Compilation albums are always a bit of a tricky proposition: on one hand, they should be cohesive, a unified vision of a specific sound, scene or time; on the other hand, you don’t want things to get too similar and interchangeable, and end up with an compilation that sounds like a greatest-hits collection from one band. Fortunately, that’s not a problem with The Vancouver Connection, Vol. 1, the debut vinyl release from Van City’s newest independent label, Big Smoke, and we’re excited to be premiering it below.
Formed just this year by Adam Sharp, Big Smoke aims to establish itself as a proudly Vancouver-centric hub for like-minded musicians, and The Vancouver Connection serves as an ideal statement of purpose. Like the best comps, the record’s great strength is its diversity: The Vancouver Connection Vol. 1 has something for everyone. Craving chill summer vibes? Reef Shark’s “Mind Race” has got you covered. Need an old-school uptempo Canrock anthem? Crank up Dead Soft’s “Sometimes I Forget.” Really wish Minus the Bear were an instrumental group? Check out Zoo Strategies’ “Actual Birthday.”
“The bands on this compilation are mostly comprised of friends I have made since moving to Vancouver from London, England in 2009,” says Adam, “and I am excited to be cementing their work in time as a dynamic-yet-cohesive representation of what Vancouver indie rock sounded like in 2015.” Dynamic, yet cohesive! That’s exactly what I’m saying!
Find your new favourite Vancouver natives below: