Members of Halifax's Quiet Parade have difficulty defining their sound—and that's how they like it. "Often, the term that I give our band is 'fog rock,'" says frontperson and lyricist Trevor Murphy in a phone interview ahead of Thursday's IDOW show. The group mixes sad and hopeful lyrics with airy instrumentals to create a sound between loss and optimism.
Quiet Parade's pianist Julia Weir, referencing CBC's description of the band, says "We're pop-folk-rock shrouded in a little fog." Weir, also reached by phone, says their songs are often about overcast places (like Halifax and Yarmouth, where Murphy grew up).
Murphy says Quiet Parade began with him presenting finished songs to friends, asking them to play music with him, almost like a backing band. Soon, lots of occasional players narrowed to a few. These few became Quiet Parade's base.
By its third album, the eponymous Quiet Parade released in October, Murphy says it changed from him offering completed songs to the group to sharing unfinished pieces, working together to "map out all the parts." This collaborative feel finalized the transition to becoming what Weir calls a "real band," and is reflected in the decision to make the record self-titled.
The music doesn't stay in one place sonically, yet recurring local lyrical themes keep the songs from travelling too far. The songs "can be taken out of time, but they are really grounded in specific places," Murphy says. And for Quiet Parade, that means no matter where the music wanders, it will always travel back to familiar, foggy shores.
Tyler Messick, Quiet Parade,
Steven Lambke, Nick Ferrio
Thursday, January 21, 8pm
The Bus Stop Theatre, 2203 Gottingen Street