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Volume 90, Issue 86

Friday, March 07, 1997



Vancouver act puts odds in its favour

©Gazette file photo
THINGS ARE LOOKING UP. Vancouver's Odds have put more of themselves into their music and video image. The band's latest, Nest, is making waves on both sides of the border.

By Ian Ross
Gazette Staff

As the ferry pulled away from the harbour without Paul Brennan and Steven Drake on board, Brennan turned to Drake and asked, "What do you think the odds are that we will ever produce an album?"

On that day Vancouver's Odds were born and with four successful albums to their credit and thousands of road miles logged, it appears that one of Canada's biggest pop bands has not missed the boat since. With the debut of their fourth album, Nest, the Odds have established itself as a stable, veteran band on the Canadian music scene, with virtually unlimited potential.

"We've always looked at our careers as having a very slow incline," bass player Doug Elliott states. "And we feel that we're just starting to hit our stride now."

This stride can be directly attributed to the growing influence and control that the four band members have taken in guiding their destiny.

"[Nest] is the first time that we've really taken true control of producing the record," Elliott says. "[And though] I suppose we've always had a hand in the production of all of records, this record is definitely the closest that we can say is us."

With the technical talents of vocalist Steven Drake – who recently mixed Trouble in the Henhouse for the Tragically Hip – the band has been able to directly influence the production of its records, an area in which many bands fail to hold much control. The Odds have pulled material from their diverse individual backgrounds to create something they want to play and hear.

Elliott cites influences ranging from The Beatles to the smooth jazz of Miles Davis to the classical composers of centuries ago, all having contributed to the style that makes the Odds stand out from many of their contemporaries.

This diverse collection of influences is not only apparent in their music, but also in the their creation of music videos that grace the screens of MTV and MuchMusic.

"The first video we ever did was with [producer] Jake Scott and we spent all this money on the video, and in the end we thought that it really wasn't that great," Elliott claims.

Since then the band has taken it upon itself to produce edgy, creative videos with well-known Canadian names like Kids in the Hall and The Pursuit of Happiness.

This creative process has established the Odds as one of Canada's more successful bands. With a new helping hand, it appears they are making their first run for the mysterious southern border.

"The record company is really going to bat for us and it's the first time we've ever felt like that with a single," says Elliott half-enthusiastically. "They will throw some money if they think they have got a single that will fly in the U.S. But if it doesn't work, that may be your only shot."

So far, the single, "Someone Who is Cool," from Nest, has gathered strong promise – breaking Top-40 charts in the states and creating small followings on some U.S. college stations.

Currently touring north of the 49th for their new album, the Odds will bring what Elliott describes as "loud guitars, loud drums, loud bass, loud vocals and lights" to The Wave Monday in an effort to display what their talents and twisted minds have created.

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

Copyright © The Gazette 1997