Interview – Neon Bloom

Canadian rock outfit Neon Bloom has unveiled their new single, “A Bullet In Tomorrow”, along with a video to accompany the release.

An uptempo, electronica-fused rock anthem exploring the macabre uncertainty of what tomorrow may bring, the song arrives from their recent sophomore EP, Still Life. In it, the Toronto-based group lushly score an undeniable truth behind an undeniable groove, and the result is non-fiction prose on possibility — or lack thereof.

“Lyrically, it’s meant to question the type of future we want to live in,” the band explains, adding it was largely inspired by the pandemic, the effects of overconsumption, our treatment of animals and our planet, and the consequences of this behaviour.

“The song is meant to encourage listeners to question their role as responsible co-habitants of an interconnected planet with finite resources,” they continue. “It encourages listeners to consider what sort of future they’re willing to work toward.”

Neon Bloom’s Jen Simpson [vocals], Fred Yurichuk [bass], Simon Chow [guitar/keys], and Chris Romano [drums] are no strangers to the music community of Canada’s indie scene mecca; their charismatic stage presence and insatiable ability to write earworm soundscapes have garnished attention from Alan Cross (102.1 The Edge, Ongoing History of New Music) to Rob Sanzo (Sum 41, Treble Charger), and more.

Their recently released EP Still Life also features “Novocaine,” “Tangerine,” and “Our Faces,” and follows their 2018 debut, First Fever. Written near the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Neon Bloom had to adapt their creative process for the four-track offering.

“Like many other bands, we were unable to see each other, practice, or play shows,” they share. “We wrote and recorded from our individual homes, and sent clips of ideas back and forth.

“We eventually pieced the songs together in a way that was very different from our usual in-person songwriting sessions; for ‘A Bullet in Tomorrow,’ specifically, Fred and Simon switched roles and came up with the initial musical melody that way.”

Much like the songwriting, even the production on the track and album came differently than the band’s previous efforts; “A Bullet in Tomorrow” focused on building and tweaking layers of loops, rather than recording full, or long takes of the song.

Plus… Listeners are offered an additional treat at the end of the drop.

“There’s an underlying ambient sample playing at the end,” the band confesses. “It’s an audio recording from Fred’s younger sister’s house party. We felt it helps to compliment the party-vibe at the end.”

Check out the video for “A Bullet in Tomorrow” below, and find out more about Neon Bloom via our mini-interview.

Care to introduce yourself to our readers?

Hi! We’re Neon Bloom, a four-piece rock band based in Toronto. We are Jen Simpson (vocals), Simon Chow (guitar/keyboard), Fred Yurichuk (bass), and Chris Romano (drums).

What do you love about being in a band?

[Jen] I love almost everything about being in a band. From writing and recording to performing and even just practicing together. Playing a good show is probably my favourite thing, where you really connect with the audience and there’s an obvious energetic exchange.. which sounds weird, but it’s an incredible feeling. I also love the camaraderie that comes with being in a band. You get to know each other as creative beings and build things together, whether it’s a song, a video, a photoshoot or something else.

[Simon] I’ve loved the mini-tours we’ve planned and taken together – in Taiwan, Czech-Republic, and Canada. It was such a great time experiencing these countries together. We got a feel for the different cultures while getting to play some great shows.

What can one person do to help the planet?

[Fred] To help the well-being of our planet we can modify our diet to be plant-based. Compared to a diet that includes animal products, an animal-free diet significantly reduces the amount of loss of natural habitat, greatly reduces greenhouse gases, decreases waste, and most importantly, removes most animal suffering. I have a Masters in Environmental Studies from York University, so have been contemplating this issue for quite some time.

Keeping with the title of the song, what are you doing tomorrow?

[Jen] Literally tomorrow? …not much. Groceries, laundry, writing. Ha. The figurative and larger “tomorrow”, trying to make better decisions about how to navigate through life in a more responsible and informed way. Thematically, that was the impetus for “A Bullet In Tomorrow”, learning to question our lives and make more conscious choices. Particularly amidst a global catastrophe and changing planet.

You get to see one Canadian artist, anytime, anyplace, in concert – who would it be and why?

[Fred] I never got to see Leonard Cohen in concert, and I wish that I had. Of course, a Montreal dive bar would be the perfect setting!

[Chris] Rush would be great. Neil Peart is a legend and a total innovator. It would have been great to see him.

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