New Music from Before The War
Before The War have just released their first two songs and will be performing this weekend as part of the 7th annual FeelsGood Xmas Party.
“It will be an amazing party,” said Camilo Villamzar, guitar player and vocalist for the group, “and we will have discs at hand for the first time.”
But a recording from the group wasn’t originally in the cards. In fact, just a few months ago the band was still on the fence about entering the studio at all due to the popularity of live and homemade recordings.
“There is an emergent taping scene in New Brunswick has started to document smaller local bar and festival shows,” said Villamzar. “Leading to the creation of BTW, I was taped a couple of times with other acts, and I had also started taping my own gigs for content and reference. Because of that, for a while it seemed viable for us to rely on live recordings to promote our music, but we got impatient. You never know when a taping is coming or how it will turn out, and certain pitches are just easier with a packaged studio recording under your arm.”
The story of Before The War reads almost like an accident at first. An unplanned arrangement between fellow musicians who, for the past few years, had been playing together in other outfits. Then, a chance opportunity presented itself.
“We first performed to cover a last minute schedule conflict for Evolve 2013. We were lucky enough that [Evolve organiser] Jonas Colter welcomed us back in 2014. At that point we were Before The War, and had only performed one show with that name, so we often joke that our second gig was at Evolve.
“In reality, we began rehearsing as BTW late last year and got our first gig in May, but we have been collaborating together for years.”
So, where does the name come from?
“Our drummer Jason was looking at common Latin expressions for the band’s name,” said Villamzar, “but quickly realized that is way too metal for our style. He did find the word ‘Antebellum’ which loosely translates to ‘Before The War’, a fitting English name. I supported the name because most of the big label music I love comes from before ‘The Loudness War’ – the unfortunate, ongoing trend in commercial music production were audio dynamics are sacrificed for volume.”
The group’s first EP, Tip, features two songs that blend the ensemble’s diverse combination of influence and background, with first-class musicianship. A strong addition to the city’s music scene.
Looking ahead, Villamzar hopes to keep performing and put the band before as many sets of new ears as they can handle.
“Shows, shows, shows,” he said. “We need to get the band road-worn. Lots of writing too. We hope to play every stage in Fredericton, including the big ones.”