Sled Island: The Pack A.D. ‘jalapeno cheese poppers good’
Gritty Vancouver garage band duo The Pack A.D. made their Sled Island debut Friday night. While this group may be extremely minimalist (with only drums, a guitar and some raspy vocals) their sound is anything but soft. The group’s drummer Maya Miller spoke with The Reflector about their show at The Palomino.
The Reflector: Based on what I have read, your music is tough to conform to one genre. How do you view your style? Is it undefinable?
The Pack A.D.: Hmm, well if you ask some critics — it’s completely definable. Personally, I think it’s a little bit of everything or at least it’s really evolving into that. For instance, we’ve started recording our next album and it’s pretty, uh, heavy. I think we both bore very easily, and it’s only natural that the music is going to reflect our need to try new things and styles.
R: What can audiences expect from your show? What do you say to reviewers who call your style gritty and even frightening?
Pack: They will be terrified and they may pee themselves a little. On a serious note, an audience can expect to find the answer to life, a recipe long forgotten and perhaps a small poodle that they can turn in for a handsome reward. To reviewers, I say: ah, yes, but our fears only make us stronger.
R: How long have you been together? What’s the story of how you two came together?
P: Well you know it’s just one of life little gifts . . . we were both heavily involved in the quilting community three years ago and a project came up that we both unbeknownst to each other volunteered for. The project’s goal was to incorporate the color mauve and string beans into a cultural representation of Vancouver as depicted through the art of quilting. Well, honestly, we both just started chatting away while working on our sections and we just hit if off famously. Then, really, it was a just a hop skip from quilting to rock n’ roll. I think Becky really misses the simplicity of the quilt though.
R: Are you Sled Island rookies? How is your reception generally in this part of the country?
P: We are noobs. Don’t pone us. We think our reception is good, like with jalapeno cheese poppers good, though we have not played a show anywhere in Alberta since 2007. So, in which case, our reception could be bad like with jello and aspic. We’re aiming for somewhere in between, like with those little pizza bagels.
R: How and why did you get involved with Sled Island ’09?
P: We are doing this because anyone worth anything wants to play this Festival — because Sled Island is hot. Plus, bonus, we get to see people we haven’t seen in a while and we can drink all we want because we won’t have the van with us. Oh, and also, I read that Zak (Pashak, festival organizer) plays Magic: the Gathering and we do too and we challenge him officially. The Pack is calling out Zak Pashak.
R: What’s coming up after Sled Island? What other projects are you working on?
P: BIG HUGE CANADA TOUR. Huge, because Canada is huge. We are touring Canada, starting with Edmonton on July 2 and ending with The Green Mountain Music Festival on Aug. 9th in Nanaimo.
In between those dates — we are playing every Canadian venue we can get our hands on.
But directly after Sled Island, we’re flying to Whitehorse to play the Sunstroke Festival. Woohoo, drinks with toes in them.
R: How was the show at the Palomino? Was the crowd really receptive to you guys?
P: I’d say the crowd was receptive, and kind’ve rowdy in a good natured way and all up in our grill kinda spilling onto the stage … translation: show good.
R: You guys seem to work in unison quite nicely? How did you work to develop that?
P: First, thanks. Second, er, we didn’t work at it. We just have always really um, worked well together. I think if we start trying to analyze it – it’ll lead to ruin.
R: Will you return for a future Sled Island?
P: Hells yes. But in the meantime — we’ll be back on Aug. 5th at Broken City.