Toronto DIY folk singer/songwriter Bryce Jardine set out as a promising solo artist last year after nine years playing in a local band. Thanks to two singles Jardine sent from his debut album, The Kids Are Gone, we were immediately smitten, and wondered why we hadn’t heard of him before now. Actually many extremely talented artists and bands featured on IRC haven’t received, for some reason, much or any mention on indie blogs and music sites, but often get more after their IRC profile. That’s why, this week, we chose Jarden as the DIY Artist of the Week.
Jardine, as a solo artist, is one of the most exciting DIY artists to emerge from Canada this year. His songs are crisp, seductively melodic, superbly written and produced, memorable and polished off with his impressive vocal work, where on songs like the album’s title track, and “Death in Life,” Jardine really shines. “The Kids Are All Gone” is probably one of the best DIY singles we’ve heard in 2012, and the follow-up track is a must-hear as well. We’ve been playing these two tracks – and others on his Bandcamp page – for the past few days again and again. All combined, it was a no-brainer on this side of the screen to name Jardine a DIY Artist of the Week.
“I wrote this record when everything in my life had fallen apart,” he told IRC. “I had no job, no band, and I was staying in an empty apartment on the 16th floor that my sister had rented out. I worked many times up to 12 hours a day on an acoustic guitar for about seven months and became quite isolated in the process. The result is an album that explores themes of loss of innocence, hope, redemption and love.”
“I have opened for many local indie acts, but thus far no name acts,” he said. “Although I have worked with members of The Kathleen Edwards Band, The Beauties, Serena Ryder, City And Colour in the studio.” Among his top musical influences are Townes Vand Zandt, Arcade Fire, Tom Waits, Neil Young, Bon Iver, Steve Earle, Lou Reed, and Leonard Cohen. All excellent examples of a young musician with a great taste in music.
The bet we have here in the cafe is that music lovers will catch on to Jardine’s brilliance, and the more they listen to his songs, the more they will be talking about him in the months to come. If not, something’s wrong with the universe. We certainly think there is a high potential for Jardine to have a bright 2013.