Published Jan 01, 2006Take a look at Winnipeg's independent music scene and one thing becomes very clear, very quickly. To outsiders, the scene appears defined by a small and extremely active group of like-minded artists, overtly political in their songs or actions and generally tied to the G7 Welcoming Committee family Propagandhi, the Weakerthans, Painted Thin, Malefaction and I Spy all proudly hail from the 'Peg. But preconceptions about what a Winnipeg band is supposed to sound like or sing about are about to be crushed with the release of Anthem Red, the fuzzed-out Ian Blurton-produced first full-length disc from Sixty Stories. Falling somewhere between the riot grrrl umph of Bikini Kill and the simple, driving melodic pop of Weezer, the female-fronted trio is an anomaly in the testosterone-fuelled scene.
But for singer/guitarist Jo Snyder, it's an odd fit that works just fine. "I don't think we don't fit in," she says during a brief break between European and Canadian tours. "Winnipeg is such a small community, so everybody knows everybody else and rips off everybody else, but we're all OK with that. It's a good thing, but I like to think that we're doing our thing too."
She said the notion that she, drummer Paul Furgale and bassist Sarah Sangster are different from their neighbours really hit home during a month of touring in Europe where the crowds were a mishmash of punkers, indie rock fans and geeks.
"We don't get a lot of hardcore kids at our shows because obviously we're not hardcore, but sometimes they come," she says. "At our last show in Stuttgart, Germany, there were a ton of crusty punks there, which was really weird. Normally it's a college or university crowd and music nerd crowd, which we like."