Canadian indie alt-rockers The Minimum Wage recently unveiled their debut EP, Small Stakes.
“Small Stakes is a collection of songs we wrote and recorded very DIY. The mindset being “let’s see what 3 guys from different musical backgrounds and taste can put together…no bullshit egos, no expectations”. If it didn’t work…- “ah well! we kept the stakes small and at least we had some fun right?” As we progressed and started to build a catalogue – it seemed like that lack of expectation really helped us to not take ourselves too seriously and allowed us to flourish as a cohesive unit.
As we progress and grow as a band we think it’s important for us to keep that vibe front of mind…”
On top of the EP release, the band unveiled their single, “Afraid of Everyone.”
“”Afraid of Everyone” is kind of an obvious handshake with pandemic life – during and post. People just seemed to line up on either side of seemingly ANY issue…no matter how trivial and find reasons to disagree and bicker – and to what end ya know? What did either side ever accomplish?
Here we are on the other side – through the looking glass – and instead of celebrating it we just find reasons to fear or hate each other.”
We are The Minimum Wage – from the bowels of hell…or Niagara, Ontario…either works, really! Up until recently, we (Sandro Rocco, Branden Sterling, and Nolan Jodes) were a three-piece band without a rhythm section…however we are pleased to introduce Dave Haley and Warren Jenko as the keepers of time and rhythm in the band. We, as a five-piece, have been hard at work putting together a live show and a follow-up to our newly released EP.
That’s what we call a segue! The new EP Small Stakes is a collection of some of the songs we released over the pandemic. They represent the more aggressive/upbeat rock vibe we can take on…we’ve saved some of the more dynamic songs for a future release. The title “Small Stakes” is how we started this band – no real expectations, not a whole lot of looking ahead…just being comfortable with “let’s see what happens…” That philosophy is how we’ve managed to see the success that we have achieved thus far…we didn’t see ourselves putting out a single when we started – let alone a collection of them. We are incredibly proud of how things have come together for us. Some bands are a look and an image with no real substance first…for us, we had no images and no design…just music. That’s what this band and these songs are about.
Good question….the content communicated today is so aggressively left or right-wing biased that it is easy to ignore or be consumed by it. Where I draw a lot of interest or inspiration is in the HOW it is communicated. The binary, closed nature of opinion now is one of the most concerning trends in our culture. If people listened ostentatiously to each other, we might actually start repairing and really progressing as a culture.
Currently, we are putting a live show together. No big dates to announce just yet. But with the addition of a powerful rhythm section in Warren & Dave (whom also play in a band called Stellar Ash that everyone should go check out immediately!), we are itching to get this beast of a band out there to the masses. It won’t be long now before we’re playing to empty rooms and bartenders across Ontario.
Our goal for 2022 is just to reach more music fans by playing live, releasing a new batch of songs, and getting into a studio as a five-piece to see what happens. Now, if we’re taking 2023 – well…that’s world domination, and anything less would be unacceptable.
I’m Jenna, and I am the founder and editor of Canadian Beats. I have had a strong love for Canadian music, which started many years ago. I have a passion for promoting these talented Canadian bands and artists, and that’s how Canadian Beats came to be. I am so proud of what it has become over the last few years, with many talented music lovers and writers coming together to spread the word of Canada’s music.