Written by: Rob Latham
Popular Vancouver rockers Venice Queen will be headlining a major Winter Olympics 2010 launch party, a mark of their progression to becoming one of the most exciting bands in the city.
The Richmond four-piece, who started life as a covers band in high school, are enjoying a growing reputation on the Vancouver music scene evolving into one of the city’s best loved bands and ultimately culminating in them landing the headline spot for the Olympics opening night at The O Zone, in Richmond, on Friday, February 12.
Part of the attraction of Venice Queen is their unique blend of music, which sees their style and sound switch abruptly from song to song.
Lead singer Ryan Bloom explains: “The way we do it keeps things interesting, we have a lot of different influences and none of our songs sound the same as the others.
“We try to keep that diversity to keep it interesting and keep us on our toes, to stop us getting bored of doing the same thing over and over.
I also think it makes it more interesting for people listening to us for the first or second time or more – when I go to a show the biggest problem is if they become monotonous.”
The band’s style is certainly difficult to pin down, which makes them intriguing to listen to as you never know what is coming next. From the simple ballad “Best Friends” to the happy-go-lucky “Summertime No Show” contrasted by the darker, heavier “The Fury Within” and the deliciously catchy, rocky “Rehab” Venice Queen is an exciting mix of Alice In Chains meets Red Hot Chili Peppers meets Avenged Sevenfold.
Bloom is adamant this is the way the band will continue to operate, as that is the way their music naturally evolves.
He said: “It may hurt us in the long run because we’re not hitting the same target demograph every time but I figure at the same time people will appreciate it – good songs are good songs right?”
Having grown up in Richmond, Bloom bemoans what he believes is a poorly organized music scene that blunts the progress of up and coming bands in Vancouver.
“It’s fluctuating and ever changing, constantly closing one club and moving the equipment to another,” he said.
“I just think there are some really good bands around here and maybe the promoters should be putting on better bills with a few clubs playing all the best bands.”
The band has plans to tour Eastern Canada and into America, particularly California, through 2010 in order to build their reputation outside of Vancouver and Bloom explains he believes the current music scene requires bands to harness a business-minded approach.
He said: “If you want to do your art form for a living you’ve got to look at it from a business point of view. You’re selling yourself, your music, your image, your t-shirts – not that I want to steal everybody’s money.
“Everyone talks about selling out but its got to the point where you could dress me like a NASCAR and put sponsors all over me if that’s what it’s going to take to stop me from doing a regular job and allow me to do what I love doing for a living.”
A second album is also in the pipeline as the band has some tracks already on the back burner and they are constantly writing new music for their fans, of whom Bloom is much appreciative.
“A lot of people are looking forward to the new album,” he said. “We have a solid fan base and the best fans in Vancouver and we can sell out any club in Vancouver on that basis.
“On the last album we took our time and we feel we’ve got a product because of that. Many bands’ second album is forced upon them and it’s more rushed but we want to deliver stuff we feel strongly of.”
Venice Queen is constantly improving as a band and their landing the Olympics gig in February is testament to the their evolution as one of the most exciting up and coming bands in Western Canada.
To check out their music and upcoming tour dates, including a gig at the Commodore Ballroom on Tuesday, December 8, visit their MySpace page.