These Kids enjoy the spotlight

British Columbian band These Kids Wear Crowns aren’t shy about letting people know that they want to make them dance. And by and large, the band has done a more than admirable job doing so with their full-length debut record, Jumpstart.

The band has earned a reputation for an energetic live show from the moment they take the stage. It will be a spectacle that fans can see for themselves when they take the stage at Moncton’s Capitol Theatre on Wednesday evening. The show starts at 7 p.m.

Formed in 2009, These Kids Wear Crowns has happened fairly quickly. The band released a self-titled EP in August of 2010 which in turn spawned the radio hit Break It Up. Leading up to the release of their EP however, the band was invited to take part in the Muchmusic television program disBand, where groups perform before a panel of industry insiders and told whether or not they feel they have “it” to forge ahead with a successful career in music. Fortunately for These Kids Wear Crowns, they were given an overwhelming approval by the disBand judges, helping to set the group’s music career in motion.

“I think that if we had not have received a positive review, I don’t believe that things would have gone as quickly as they have, if at all,” These Kids Wear Crowns vocalist Alex Johnson explains. “I don’t know if we would have had the confidence needed to continue. Things started happening really quickly for us after the show, however. The same week that we recorded the show, we secured our booking agent and started to gradually build our team.

“It has been great to surround ourselves and work with a team of people who have the same mindset that we do.”

For the making of Jumpstart, These Kids Wear Crowns enlisted production support from three different producers including Matt Squire, Gggarth Richardson and Geoff Rockwell. Each producer brought a wealth of experience to their recording sessions, having worked with artists as diverse as Rage Against The Machine, 3OH!3 and Katy Perry among others.

“Each of the producers we worked with had a different background so of course they each had their own ideas to bring to the table,” Johnson says. “We worked with each of the producers separately and we left it up to Mark Needham who mixed our record to make the songs fit together in the bigger context of a whole record.”

The group is no strangers to the road, having played what Johnson estimates to be well over 100 shows for the year to date. Once the group’s run of 10 shows in the Maritimes concludes in Fredericton on Oct. 24, These Kids Wear Crowns will be jet setting off to Australia for a brief tour.

Though the group has already spent some time down under doing press for Jumpstart, their upcoming tour will actually mark the first time they will be performing in Australia.

“We are heading down at the time their summer is starting so we are hoping for some nice, hot weather,” Johnson says.

Asked if the group noted many cultural differences when they were in Australia this past spring, Johnson says that he and his band mates actually found the culture down under to be similar to Canadian culture.

“Nightlife in Australia is a little different than here in Canada in the respect that they build a lot of bars and shops in these little alleys that would normally house trash cans here in Canada. It’s definitely part of what helps make it such a unique place to visit. As a general rule though, Australians are very nice and thoughtful. We are really looking forward to returning.”

Johnson is the first to admit that he and the five band mates that make up These Kids Wear Crowns are being given an incredible opportunity to see the world while doing something they love. Even though he equates the band to holding down a full-time job, he says that frequent contact with friends outside of the band helps him maintain perspective.

“I have buddies that work on oil rigs in Alberta that work three weeks on and then have one week off. Talking to them and hearing of what they do makes what we are being given the chance to do that much more special. I don’t enjoy long work days. I would be a terrible labourer,” he laughs.

Article published in October 7, 2011 edition of the Times & Transcript