Autumn years

New pop trio features some familiar faces

Sean Perkins

While Autumn Still only formed last November, members of the pop-rock trio have been kicking around the Winnipeg music scene for quite some time. 

Thirty-year-old vocalist/guitarist Trevor Graumann (SitDown Tracy, All of Your Friends) and 28-year-old vocalist/bassist Bethany Swanson have been loosely jamming on and off since they were in high school.

“I came back to the city a few years ago from out west in Lethbridge and eventually started to jam together with Trevor again,” Swanson says. 

“We were both doing our own thing for a while and then it just made sense to come together and think about forming Autumn Still,” Graumann adds.

The trio also includes drummer Roger Arseneault, who also plays with Swanson in Roger’s Arsenal, and is also her partner.

“We needed a drummer who would work with what we were doing and he was the obvious choice,” Swanson says. “There’s been some friends that have come and gone, but Autumn Still is just the three of us now.”

In June, the band released a self-titled EP on its Bandcamp page, which holds three songs that took about six months to write.

“We just recorded it in my basement actually,” Swanson says. “Roger did all of the gruelling, nitpicky recording work. He has a good ear for that sort of thing and we’re really pleased with the results. It was really great to have been able to have hashed it out amongst ourselves.” 

“When you do home recording you have more control over what everything sounds like, mostly because you have all the time you need. We really had the time to flesh everything out and make it sound like how we wanted it to,” Graumman adds. 

Overall, the band writes songs it labels as pop-rock with a little bit of folk thrown in.

“We don’t have many direct influences, I’d say our influences are more symbolic. Like for example we’re all really big fans of old school Motown and Fleetwood Mac,” Graumann says. “Our lyrics are really important to us and I think that’s kind of where the folk influence comes in.” 

“I’m a giant Leonard Cohen fan,” Swanson adds. “I think things just filtered their way in organically, though we have certain things we strive for in our music. I think vocal arrangements are one of the big things we focus on.” 

The band has two shows booked in November and also has an official EP release show happening on Dec. 4 at the newly opened Good Will Social Club.

“This EP is like our introduction obviously, we just want to get it out there and make a push to get ready for some touring and stuff like that,” Swanson says. “Hopefully next year we’ll start working on a full-length.”

“We’re really proud of this EP and just want to get the word out about the band,” Graumann says.

Published in Volume 69, Number 9 of The Uniter (October 29, 2014)

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