Miracle Fortress's Graham Van Pelt lays siege to music lovers
Hailing from the mythic shores of the river Avon in Stratford (Ontario that is), Graham Van Pelt wears many a musical badge around these parts. A small crew called themselves adherents of his first project, the solo instrumental dream escapades of Hidden In Buildings, a name seemingly retired before it had even really taken off. Next up, his electronic party mashers Think About Life struck a sympathetic chord among music listeners with their self-titled release last year. The trio stormed audiences here and abroad – they just got off the road (Eastern Canada) and onto a plane (Japan) – and are now getting ready for album number two, says Van Pelt.
"We’re finishing a new EP. We tried some new things and decided we like the old thing better. We’ll make a new album when the EP comes out. Probably less punk mess and more dance floor punishment."
To these ears, the holy part of his trinity of recent bands is Miracle Fortress, another lone adventure peopled by Van Pelt and his instruments (guitar, keyboard, programming), and which has shed light on his fine-tuned pop chops and honeyed voice. Five Roses is the result of a lot of hard work, and debuts on Montreal’s Secret City label (Patrick Watson’s home) entirely written, played, produced and engineered by the lanky redhead.
In bringing the album to life on stage, he’s created a band to take us into the heart of his journey. "It’s hard to make modern musicians and equipment sound like another time, which is what I want to do," explains Van Pelt. "I don’t want to sound like another band trying to rock the crowd. I want it to be like the audience is listening in on something… People messing with sounds and their heads."
CD launch at Friendship Cove (215A Murray St.), May 16