Volume 90, Issue 75

Thursday, February 06, 1997



Another wet shot at world domination

Gazette file photo
HE'S JUST SO CUTE!!! Moist gives a typical David Usher-in- forefront-pose and will find itself at Centennial Hall with Ginger tonight. The show is sold out. Sorry girls.

By Lukas Hudecek
Gazette Staff

In 1993, Moist came out of nowhere and with huge support from MuchMusic, became a household name in Canada. After the success of Silver, Moist embarked on a lengthy touring stint.

Keyboardist Kevin Young admits he is relieved at the response to Moist's follow-up effort, Creature. The band still has fans in Canada after the long break in between CDs (are you listening Doughboys?)

"You get concerned, 'Are the people still with us?'" he says. "And they are definitely with us. So that's good."

Many things have changed for the band since its virgin tour of Canada. For starters, Moist is now signed to a major label (EMI), has sold over 350,000 copies of its debut CD and is in the middle of a seven-week, 32-city Canadian tour. Another difference is Moist has moved east, relocating from Vancouver to Montreal.

"We'd been in Vancouver for quite a long time but at the same time we hadn't been able to spend that much time there having been on the road a lot," Young explains. "We were in the midst of writing Creature and decided it was time for a change. Montreal's a great city and it conforms to our lifestyles very well."

Moist has always had an urge to do things differently. Many people were surprised to see the band release the very relaxed song "Leave it Alone" as Creature's debut single.

"We just looked at the songs and said 'Where do we want to start this album?'" Young reflects. "We wanted to come out with something a little different from where we had started our last album ("Push"), so we decided to come out with a more relaxed tune."

To add to listener confusion, the band included the song "Disco Days" in the middle of its moody and unpredictable sophomore CD. The ballad features only lead singer David Usher and Young on piano.

"I sat down and played a bit of it one day for the guys and they liked it," Young recalls. "And we just started to work on it lyrics wise and it came together fairly quickly. It's something a little different to put on the album."

Canada is not the extent of Moist's ambitions – the band would like its sound to go truly international. First step to world domination: Moist decided its best strategy would be to invade the musical hotbed of Thailand.

Though usually a very difficult market to break into (as many great bands have tried and failed), Moist managed to defy the odds – partly due to the fact that Usher is part-Thai.

"We love it [in Thailand] and we are going back there after this tour," claims Young. "It's very strange. It's a different situation in Thailand when you come there. You know people are hanging around the hotel waiting and they follow you around downtown."

After achieving more success in three years than most Canadian bands see in their careers, one would figure Moist to be a happy group of campers. However, Usher's onstage demeanour does not suggest he is very happy.

"He has been known to be [violent]," admits Young with a laugh. "It's a very unpredictable thing and sometimes things get a little out of hand on stage, that's all.

With all this success, it is refreshing to see a Canadian band that still feels it is important to make touring Canada its first priority – as opposed to the 12-city tours that some of the bigger Canadian acts seem to do these days (eg. Alanis, Neil Young).

"We wanted a good long tour and get to places we had never been to. We felt that it was important for us to get to markets that other bands often don't play.

"But for now we are just taking care of Canada," he insists. "Because it's home."

To Contact The Entertainment Department: gazent@julian.uwo.ca

Copyright The Gazette 1997