Olympic Symphonium returns to Moncton

Boasting a melodic, passionate take on folk-pop, the trio that makes up Fredericton band The Olympic Symphonium had a wealth of music experience behind them before they had even played a note together. When not playing in this group, members Graeme Walker, Kyle Cunjak and Nick Cobham are a part of other bands including Grand Theft Bus, David Myles, Share and more. But with the group’s third full-length record, The City Won’t Have Time To Fight, slated to drop a mere three days after their upcoming Metro Moncton show, the group that was once a side-project to their other bands is quickly becoming a primary concern for all involved.

The Olympic Symphonium will be performing tomorrow evening at Café Aberdeen in the Aberdeen Cultural Centre, located at 140 Botsford St.

Speaking from his Fredericton home, Olympic Symphonium’s Graeme Walker admits that the band just “sort of happened” in the midst of each of the guys performing with others.

“Things just kind of happened with this band. Initially, we had all agreed to try something different where we all come from rock-oriented backgrounds musically,” he says. “We started writing songs together in a living room, sharing songs that didn’t really work within the confines of our other projects.”

Soon enough, Walker says, something strange happened: people started liking the music the trio was coming up with.

“Any momentum that the band has picked up has happened entirely by mistake,” he deadpans. “But as we saw things were moving ahead, we started dedicating more time to it.”

Though each of the Symphonium’s members have plenty on their plates to keep them busy, they still manage to eke out the time to make beautiful music together. Walker says that as promotional efforts behind their other bands’ records wind down, it opens the prized window of opportunity for the Olympic Symphonium to become their primary project for a period of time.

Since their last release in 2008, Walker says the most noticeable difference that fans will notice is the fact that the band went back to basics with this newest batch of songs. He says their last record was dense in terms of having the sound being very layered and they didn’t want to repeat that this time.

“This new record is definitely a more concise, stripped back release. Where our last record had a lot of guests playing on it, this new one is just us.”

Recorded in an abandoned house in Fredericton last winter, Walker says the band imposed a relatively quick deadline upon themselves with the hopes that the quick session would elicit a more focused effort.

“Some of these songs had been played live but others were just sketches when we began recording. We wanted to get a snapshot of where we were at musically at the time.

“The nice thing about how we made this record was the fact that we could record whenever we wanted to. When we have made records in the past, it has been more individual recording sessions due to our varied schedules but with this record, we were all able to make the record together and I think that the cohesion shows with the end result.”

Article published in January 21, 2011 edition of the Times & Transcript