YOUR FAVORITE ENEMIES
Pssssh, keep quiet! These noise-rockers are Canada’s best-kept secret…
What are this lot being so secretive about, then?
Well, up until now, Your Favorite Enemies have been deliberately keeping themselves out of the spotlight. After forming in Montreal in 2006, the group immediately ignited a burst of North American interest. They were plastered all over industry magazines and courted by a host of labels. “It was a crazy train we were on, and at first it was a lot of fun,” explains frontman Alex Foster (the one in the tea cosy). “Then we realised we were losing ourselves to other people’s ambitions. We made a decision to define what we wanted to do and how we wanted to do it. We wanted to take control of our own destiny.”
So they’re DIY enthusiasts?
Indeed they are. Inspired by the legacy of hardcore legends such as Black Flag, they started their own label, Hopeful Tragedy, and sold 40,000 copies of their debut EP off their own bats. They also bought an old catholic church and converted it into a recording studio. “When you’re doing interviews, it’s sexy to hold up that punk DIY ethic, but it’s actually a lot of work,” guitarist Jeff Beaulieu says. “It’s not just about making it in your local scene. You have to be organised and committed.”
Have they been over to the UK yet?
They’ve just played a brace of London shows and will be back in the spring when their debut full-length, Between Illness And Migration, gets a UK release. They’ve also played crazy shows in China and Japan. For a band with strong sociopolitical leanings (Alex is a former spokesperson for Amnesty International) the former threw up some challenges. “I had to consider what I said, but we thought it was better to talk about dreams and sow seeds than to be more confrontational, get our 15 minutes of fame, and have the concert stopped,” Alex says. “In Japan, we played a Buddhist temple in the mountains and had monks rocking out with fists in the air. It was unreal.”
That sounds pretty amazing, but what do they actually sound like?
Alex describes Your Favorite Enemies as “noise-rock with soul”, but they’ve effortlessly surfed moods and genres in their recorded output so far. From sinuous Queens Of The Stone Age grooves, to jarring Sonic Youth spills of noise, to lilting acoustics, they can do it all. Check out A View From Within on Kerrang.com to hear your new favorite friends.
MEET THE BAND
Now you know Alex, say hello to the rest of his secretive bandmates…
Jeff Beaulieu (Guitar)
“Jeff is the spark in the band. He’s always positive and brings a lot of ideas to the table. He’s the glue that holds the band together”
“He’s the craziest mad scientist ever. You should see his pedalboard, it’s full of lights, and like a Pink Floyd show!”
Ben Lemelin (Bass)
“Ben’s very passionate, and he brings both heaviness and amazing melodies to the band.”
Miss Isabel (Keyboard/Vocals)
“She isn’t afraid to look one of us in the eye and challenge us. She brings clarity when we’re heading different directions”
Charles “Moose” Allicy (Drums)
“Moose is like a quiet spirit of the forest. He keeps a low profile but, when it’s time to speaks, everyone stops to listen”