Over the past four years, Winnipeg moodpop trio Nova has been playing sporadic shows as well as recording, but is set to see a lot more action with the release of its debut LP Midnight Midnight.
Made up of friends Jackie Hogue (drums, vocals), Molly McCracken (keys, vocals) and local working-class hero Greg MacPherson (guitar, vocals, percussion), two of its three members had never really been in a band before.
Working with MacPherson, an established solo musician with 20 years of touring and recording experience under his belt, might be intimidating to some.
“I try not to think about that,” McCracken says with a laugh. “It was a very gentle start in that it was just casual, getting together to play some music.”
MacPherson brought in the songs that he thought would fit the band dynamic and the three of them would get to work.
“It became a place for a certain style of songs to get workshopped,” she says. “I play the piano, but I’ve never played the keyboards in a band before. The things that we were looking to do I was able to fit in within our sound. Jackie was also learning to play the drums.”
Initial sessions for Midnight Midnight began two years ago at Mid Ocean where bed tracks for three songs were recorded by Braden Salt and Jason Gladu. Those songs were mixed by Cam Loeppky (John K. Samson, Federal Lights), who then recorded the seven other songs that make up the disc.
“It was good because we got experience with doing the recording at the beginning so when we went in to do the rest we knew a little bit more about the studio and how we work in the studio,” McCracken says. “It was my first real experience with one and it was a good one.”
Midnight Midnight is the third disc in about a year from Disintegration Records, the label Loeppky and MacPherson founded. Bands on the roster also include Haunter, Slow Dancers and Cannon Bros.
“I think it showed a lot of foresight by Greg and Cam to create Disintegration Records because there’s a lot of amazing music in Winnipeg that is needing a vehicle to bring it forward,” McCracken says. “Greg’s got the skills to do it on his own but having that label infrastructure certainly helps. There’s a certain camaraderie and mutual support among the artists on Disintegration.”
As being a musician is something that McCracken does as a fun way to spend time with her friends, the record is a nice way to document and represent those experiences.
“Everybody’s got a lot on the go,” she says. “Living in the city and experiencing the struggles we see around us, it’s really nice to have a place to come together to create music that reflects our experiences as a group of friends. We’ve put our hearts into it and we’re really excited to share that with people.”
Published in Volume 67, Number 7 of The Uniter (October 17, 2012)