The Artist Life Interview & Show Review

The Artist Life wasn’t the big appeal for the big show over the weekend. But damn did they impress me. The show was high energy, rocked out, and despite a guitar problem, you would never know that anything was wrong. They were on queue, the band knew how to control a crowd, and everybody went absolutely nuts for The Artist Life.

If you haven’t heard their music, their EP is a great way to sample them. Sharing a name with their latest single, Let’s Start a Riot is like a big bang of music crammed onto a CD. But with titles like “Beach Towns and Foolish Clowns”, you know that this isn’t your typical rock. You can check out the band at or go to buy their album right now (iTunes Link)! They’re another Underground Operations band, but they offer a different sound than the usual UO funky-pop.

I was lucky enough to sit with Dean and Ian of The Artist Life to chat about Stereos, music, life, and of course, nutella. I must say that these two guys are some of the most genuinely great people I’ve ever met. They are so appreciative of every person, every fan, every show. And I must say it is blatantly apparent that they love what they do. This kind of honesty and love for the job is rare but these guys are definitely some of the most deserving people to be in the industry. I can’t say enough nice things about them.

Alright, enough with the mushy mushy – check out the interview below, the audio, and then head past it for some fantastic photos of the night!

Eggplante: So let’s not beat around the bush; where did you guys come from? You’re not the biggest band in the world, but you’re not a small time band either. You guys have some pretty big sounds, you’ve kind of started a riot, you’re connected to Stereos and Midway State, so what’s next?

Ian: Well after we dropped the EP in October of 2008, we sort of toured, working hard, paying our dues, so what’s next is full-length.

Dean: And how everything worked with Stereos was that our management and record label is Underground Operations and obviously they manage Stereos as well so when they moved to Toronto and found a house and signed their deal, we started hanging out with them and it turned out that we all loved the same bands and we got along with each other really well. We all talked about the first time they go across Canada, we’d do it. The best thing about being in a band is being able to tour with your friends, so we became really good buddies and they were like ‘yeah, we’re gonna take you guys on tour!’

E: That’s how it starts, right? So you guys are pretty chill guys, but your music is pretty heavy. In comparison, you’ve got The Midway State which is kind of like the love bug guys, Stereos which are more of the pop stuff, you guys have more of the punk and the hard edged rock stuff. But you’re kind of goofy guys; how do you jump from one to the other?

D: Uhh, I don’t know, we’ve always just wanted to be that really light hearted fun punk band, even if our lyrics might deal with some pretty heavy subject matter sometimes.

I: I think the thing about us is that we’re not ironic comedy, no offense to some bands. I mean, some bands are like ‘let’s work at this really hard to make this funny’ and we’re not like that.

D: When we do something comedic and fun like shooting Let’s Start a Riot [which Eggplante is in by the way], running out of a tree bush and I’m only in my underwear, that is honestly spur of the moment, we were like ‘oh, who wants to get down in their underwear?’ It’s not like this pre-planned notion of comedic activities. We take our stage so serious, and we also have fun with it too, that we have to.

E: So let’s talk about your tattoos. What’s the big one; what’s your favourite?

D: Well, this one is pretty cool; everyone in the band has this one. Tattoo depicts and anchor overlayed with the text “We’re Not Alone”

I: I’d agree; Even though it is aesthetically my least favourite tattoo, I like it the most!

E: Alright, so that’s enough with the bullshit inspirational questions, so let’s get down to it. Nutella or Peanut Butter?

D: Uhh, peanut butter. Sweet stuff gives me a stomach ache.

I: I like them both to be honest with you.

E: But you’ve gotta pick one. Like, Lights told me Kraft dinner when I asked her, and I’m like ‘how did we get to Kraft Dinner?’ You have to pick one!

I: Nutella.

D: (pointing to Ian) This is also the guy that, when we get to a restaurant, asks for peanut butter packets and opens them up and eats them before the breakfast gets there.

E: Only because they don’t make nutella packets, though, right?

I: They do make nutella packets.

E: Don’t toy with me. Hahaha, would it be the ultimate form of flattery to see The Artist Life in Rock Band or Guitar Hero?

I: Oh, dude! I would love to have some songs on there! That’s the new medium, right? Kids playing fake guitar on a video game. What am I gonna do, sit here and go ‘oh, that’s so stupid!’, no, I’m going to embrace it!

E: And it’s a way to reach like twenty million more people! If you could be a superhero, what power would you have?

D: I would like to have the power not to die. I’m like super scared of death, to get like deep here, I am, so I’d like be able to not die.

I: I’d like to be Spiderman and shoot webs from my arms.

Ian says this with the straightest face, no planning, no jokes; he actually wants to be Spiderman. Alright, I can dig it.

E: You just want to be Spiderman, eh? It’s not even about the powers, you just want to be Spiderman!

I: Well, call it the Power of the Spider then. Climbing up walls and stuff.

E: Awesome; what’s the next video?

D: We’re not sure yet. It’s going to be when the full length record comes out. We’re going to be in the studio all Winter.

E: When can we expect that?

D: I’d say realistically, end of Spring/early Summer? Hopefully we’ll have a single and a video and release to coincide with the album!

E: So you guys are all on Twitter; @theartistlife. Thanks so much guys!

As usual, check out the audio from the interview at the link below and of course, the pictures as well! Please follow Eggplante on Twitter (@eggplante) and the Eggplante Facebook Page so you can get all the latest updates!

EggplanteInterviewsTheArtistLife1209.mp3 (6.9MB, MP3 Audio)

This is Eggplante wishing everyone a Merry Christmas! I will definitely be posting about The Midway State before the new year, and hopefully another post about this wonderful city that I’ve been putting together for a while. Happy Holidays!

PS. Some sweet GIFness right here: