Countdown to MANITOBA AT NXNE – Interview with Attica Riots

By: Jenna Melanson

On June 18, 2015 Manitoba Music is hitting the NXNE at the Rivoli in Toronto. We thought it would be fun to countdown to this event by interviewing four of the bands, we have already featured The Crooked Brothers and JP Hoe, and now it’s time for Attica Riots. This Winnipeg based band is made up of Bobby Desjarlais, Anders Erickson & Kyle Erickson. The band is set to release their anxiously awaited full-length debut album later this year.

How did you meet and form the band?

We’ve been playing in bands along side each other for years. It got to a point where it made sense to be in one together.

How did you come up with your band name?

The prison riot in one of my favourite Vonnegut novels, Hocus Pocus, was  based on the Attica State prison riots. It was a tragic riot over human rights. The name serves as a bit of a bookmark for where I was at and what I was reading when we chose the name.

You will be part of the NXNE 2015 Manitoba Music Showcase on June 18, how does it feel to be highlighted for your music at this showcase?

It feels great. Coming from a music scene as diversely talented and professional as Winnipeg’s is something to be proud of. You have to work hard to even be in the mix in that city.

There are many more bands from Manitoba that are not showcased; do you have any bands you’d like to suggest to our readers?

Well, The Bros. Landreth just won a Juno. Royal Canoe are pretty great and I commend them for marching to the beat of their own drum. My boys in The Revival always blow the roof off, but I’m biased from sharing vans, stages and beds with them on tour. There’s a lot.

If you were asked to give a new Manitoba artist/ band some advice, what would your advice be?

Nothing profound. I’d probably yell something like “Just love music, ya know?” or “Play! Play! Play!” after a couple drinks at their show. People deserve to make their own way without me mucking it up.

One thing that is a major marketing innovation these days is social media, making it possible for artists to connect with their fans by a simple touch of the keyboard. Do you feel this is a vital tool that all artists should partake in?

It all depends where you’re at as a band, really. I highly recommend it, though. It’s makes life a lot easier. Like a shoehorn.

Besides this showcase, when can fans expect to see more live shows?

We have the honour of closing out the Canada Day celebrations with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra at The Forks (Wpg). I’m so curious as to what our songs will be like with the WSO on boar.

Last but not least, is there anything you’d like to say to your fans?

Enjoy yourselves.

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