Rockin’ The Suburbs, making Modern Myths

So how did one of the guys who recorded the latest Arcade Fire record end up working on Modern Myths, the debut album by local pop-rock four-piece Les Jupes?

“I’ve known (singer-guitarist) Mike (Petkau Falk) for quite a while,” Marcus Paquin explained by phone from Montreal earlier this week. “In the back of our heads we always planned on doing some sort of musical collaboration, so when he asked me to work on the record, I jumped at the opportunity.”

A former competitive swimmer with a Master’s degree in sound recording, Paquin has made a name for himself working on albums by Stars and Torngat. He also fronts his own band, Silver Starling, who are signed to Toronto’s illustrious Last Gang Records.

Paquin says his friendship with Petkau Falk made making Modern Myths a joy.

“We have similar musical tastes, and definitely working with Mike was great because he was very open-minded,” Paquin says.

“He was willing to try a lot of different ideas. So, the momentum was good. It was a really open, collaborative, (exploratory) process. And I knew it was going to be that way from the start, so the deeper we got into it, the more it became really fun.”

Petkau Falk and Paquin.

Mixing elements of pop-rock, post-punk and goth, Modern Myths is a deeply personal record. The impeccable performances and production, led by Petkau Falk’s trademark baritone, make for an engaging rock record.

“I like how he unabashedly just goes for it,” Paquin says of Petkau Falk’s writing. “He’s got a wide palette of lyrical and musical ideas, and I think he’s not afraid to just lay it all on the table and really show people what he’s thinking and what he’s feeling. I think that’s a beautiful thing.”

And about that little Arcade Fire record…

“It was awesome,” Paquin says of recording guitars, some drums and some vocals for The Suburbs.

“I don’t think anybody ever has a definite sense of whether a record is going to be a smash hit or be more of a sleeper, but I think we all felt it was a really good record when we were making it.

“That’s all you can really say when you’re working on a record like that. You have a good feeling about it, and like on any project, we gave it as much energy as we could.”

Of all the things he does, Paquin finds working with other musicians to be the most rewarding.

“Musical collaboration is what I’m most drawn to,” he says. “The cool thing (about both The Suburbs and Modern Myths) is there was a lot of collaboration, so the creativity was high and I really enjoyed that.”

Paquin with Silver Starling.