Whatever happened to that one band?

Looking back at 25 local artists to watch

Every January since 2009, the Uniter has been putting the spotlight on local artists to watch (2008 profiled Canadians to watch, but included late locals the Liptonians). We thought we’d take a look back at the past picks and see what they’re up to.


Del Barber
Facebook likes: 2,670
Accolades: Nominated for a 2011 Juno Award, winner of two Western Canadian Music Awards.
Recent activity: Released Headwaters in 2012 on Six Shooter Records.

Facebook likes: 5,480
Accolades: n/a
Recent activity: Singer Bekki Friesen moved the project to LA in 2011, was featured on a Billy Ray Cyrus album and played on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno a few times. New record set for a 2014 release.

The Lytics

Facebook likes: 4,200
Accolades: 2010 and 2013 nominees at the West Coast Music Awards
Recent activity: They Told Mecame out in 2012 on Camobear Records. This month saw the release of a stop-motion animated music video created by the Proctor Bros.

Diana Pops
Facebook likes: 360
Accolades: n/a
Recent activity: Self-released the For Bright Minds in Dark Corners EP in 2012.

Sights and Sounds
Facebook likes: 6,400
Accolades: Has toured with Billy Talent, Moneen, Misery Signals and more
Recent activity: Released the Silver Door EP in 2013 on Pure Noise.


Facebook likes: n/a
Accolades: n/a
Recent activity: The band moved to Europe a few years ago to make it big and were apparently never heard from again.

Kingdom of Sleep
Facebook likes: 365
Accolades: n/a
Recent activity: The band’s last Facebook post from October, 2010:

“so last update was in august... yeah we’re still alive, still drinking heavily, working on newer material that i know all you sludge fans will enjoy! we’ll start doing some shows in the new year, maybe with some merch! stay tuned and invite your friends!”

Jodi King
Facebook likes: solo - n/a, as Love & the Outcome - 12,061
Accolades: Nominated for five GMA Canada Covenant Awards in 2013
Recent: Moved to Nashville with her husband Chris Rademaker to form Christian duo Love & the Outcome, which released its self-titled debut in 2013.

Royal Canoe
Facebook likes: 6,237
Accolades: In 2013 the band made Best Of lists from The New York Times, KCRW and Consequence of Sound. “Bathtubs” video featured on CBS.com.
Recent: Released Today We’re Believers in 2013 (on Roll Call, Nevado and Nettwerk) to critical acclaim. Next up is a North American tour with Bombay Bicycle Club.

Facebook likes: 450
Accolades: Blogs and magazines across North America enjoyed the band’s All These Choices EP.
Recent: Shows and singles throughout 2013, still going strong as far as we know.


Facebook likes: n/a (84 Twitter followers)
Accolades: n/a
Recent: Dana Bean did some music in a short film called Chump Change and her last YouTube video was two years ago, but her Twitter says she’s working on some new tunes and playing the odd gig.

Cannon Bros.
Facebook likes: 816
Accolades: 2011’s Firecracker/Cloudglow was long listed for the 2012 Polaris Music Prize.
Recent: Members keep busy in and out of such bands as Departures and Haunter (RIP) when not backing up Shotgun Jimmie and playing their own gigs.

Facebook likes: n/a
Accolades: n/a
Recent: The band seems to be done, but vocalist Nick Wiebe and guitarist Michael Fardoe now front Waster, which is a pretty awesome metal group. You can get the group’s 2013 LP Thunder Pit for free at waster.bandcamp.com

Facebook likes: 1,800
Accolades: Voted Best New Solo Artist in Uptown’s 2011 reader’s poll.
Recent: Lorenzo went back to his given name of Leonard Sumner and put out the Rez Poetry album in 2013.

This Hisses
Facebook likes: 770
Accolades: Lots of showcasing at various music conferences (NXNE, etc).
Recent: The band released its sophomore LP Anhedonia in 2013 on Transistor 66 Records and played its last show with guitarist Patrick Short in December.


The Blisters
Facebook likes: 240
Accolades: n/a
Recent: The band’s debut full length Are You Awake? finally came out, while various Blisters keep busy with solo projects and other bands (The Hoots, Bad Nerves, Lyzie Burt).

The Burning Kettles
Facebook likes: 274
Accolades: n/a
Recent: The band is working on the follow up to its Unlikely Event EP, playing tons of shows and frontman Bryn Rieger has a noise-pop offshoot called Euro Vaca. Catch them at the Big Fun festival on January 26.

Fire & Smoke
Facebook likes: 578
Accolades: n/a
Recent: The duo is kaput, but Claire Morrison has a flourishing solo career and Daniel Péloquin-Hopfner keeps busy in Red Moon Road.

Facebook likes: n/a
Accolades: n/a
Recent: The band ended but its members are busy with various bands, films and art projects.

Still Lights
Facebook likes: n/a
Accolades: n/a
Recent: After an EP in 2012 the band seems to be donezo, but former members Kris Buhrer and Jean-Louis Wittinger are focusing on electro pop duo Kezdet.


Animal Teeth
Facebook likes: 252
Accolades: n/a
Recent: The quartet released an EP in 2013, toured and shared its members with a few other bands, including Boats.

Eagle Lake Owls
Facebook likes: 396
Accolades: n/a
Recent: 2013 saw the release of an EP, a tour and an opening slot with the Rural Alberta Advantage. A new EP is in the works.

From Giants
Facebook likes: 387
Accolades: n/a
Recent: The band played a slew of gigs in 2013, released an EP through Head in the Sand and shared members with Eagle Lake Owls and Man the Selector.

Oldfolks Home
Facebook likes: 845
Accolades: n/a
After plenty of tours and a very well received LP, Black & Blue, the project called it a day after a December 2013 Christmas show.

The Famous Sandhogs
Facebook likes: n/a
Accolades: n/a
Recent: We fell in love with the lo-fi goodness of 2013’s Vol. 2 and when Vol. 3 appeared in our mailbox, complete with handmade liner notes, we were just as impressed.

Published in Volume 68, Number 16 of The Uniter (January 15, 2014)

Related Reads