Updated: Feb 1, 2020
Words by Carly Trinier
Roovs, the Toronto indie group, is made up of five members, each with their own unique tastes that help create the diverse range of music that is sure to steal the spotlight from bands like the Arkells and Hippo Campus. The group got together after meeting at IMC music camp and what happened at band camp did not stay at band camp. They came back to the city and set up shop. After having their first show in December 2018 they already have a dozen original songs and a sound that is distinctly their own.
“I think slowly throughout the couple months after that first show the sound kind of narrowed. [We found] our sound as a five piece instead of just being like okay, we all play together. Now we are trying to create our own unique sound.” Ethan, the lead singer, says while the others nod along.
They are an energetic, optimistic group of teens – yes, teens – whose taste come from bands that were long over before they began. Despite their age, their looks are classic rock star: laid back, long-hair, vintage button ups covering up vintage tanks and tees. Their performance is classic rock star: unabashed singing, nonchalant strumming on vintage guitars, and drummer jokes mid set. Their music – you guessed it – is classic rock star. It is a mix of old school influence and inventive modern sounds.
These inventive sounds are usually the biproduct of an unusual practice for the band. Drummer, Matt, explains, “When we get bored, we just switch around. All of us can play a lot of instruments. When you’re on [an instrument] you’re not as comfortable with, you come up with more interesting things. When you’re on the instrument you always play you tend to do the same things. If you move it around you can kind of … free the creative spirit.”
“What makes our sound cool is that we all write to some extent.” Ethan adds.
With influences spanning over indie rock legends like The White Stripes to the Motown greats, each member brings a singular flavour to the group, which they have dovetailed into a cohesive sound that is uniquely Roovs.
Without one lead writer or producer to dictate the direction of the group, they have to work together to decide how every song is written and produced. Having such different tastes in music and being self-produced, Roovs says the thing they focus on most is compromise. “At the end of the day majority rules,” they say.