George Pettit Says Alexisonfire Were "Lucky" to Come Up in MuchMusic's Heyday

"At that time I think there was a great number of people in Canada that were ready to hear something different or something real"
George Pettit Says Alexisonfire Were 'Lucky' to Come Up in MuchMusic's Heyday
Photo: Chris Gee
George Pettit has had his hands full in 2022 to say the least — with Alexisonfire's comeback going full steam ahead, plus a new album from Dead Tired on the way, not to mention holding down a full-time job, being a dad and husband — he's got a lot on his plate. Still, the AOF vocalist has found time to shout out the institutions that brought him up, paying homage to MuchMusic's alternative programming in a new interview.

Speaking with Metal Injection, Pettit shared that he and his AOF bandmates were "lucky" to rise to popularity in tandem with the peak era of MuchMusic's late-night programming, where he had learned about formative new music as a kid and would later go on to become a featured artist.

Paying homage to '90s/'00s late-night alt-videoflow series The Wedge, as well as MuchLoud and City Limits, Pettit shared that he "would have been a profoundly different person if I didn't have the secret corners of late-night television to show me the good music."

He said:

Traditionally as Canadians I think we tend to prop up mediocre horseshit in music a lot of the time. I just think that that's it. Like our national beverage is the Tim Hortons Double Double. It's disgusting. Every once in a while somebody kind of sticks their foot in the door and gets to kind of get in there. And we were lucky enough that at the beginning of our band we had MuchMusic and MuchMusic had some secret corners of late night that would allow a band like Alexisonfire to exist. And at that time I think there was a great number of people in Canada that were ready to hear something different or something real.

You know, there were kids in Yellowknife that had felt different or felt like music didn't appeal to them. And then they saw us play on MuchMusic and they were like, "that's who I am now." And that kind of built the ground floor of, I think, our fan base here.

I would have been a profoundly different person if I didn't have the secret corners of late-night television to show me the good music. There was
The Wedge and City Limits and MuchLoud and that sort of thing to present that to me. Even a lot of the major radio stations late night would have like the punk show or they would have some sort of different thing.

They were still giving deejays the ability to pick songs and that was like a big deal. For everybody who wants something a little different you have to look for it and feel like you're finding something secret and that's just for you. and I think we kind of appeal to people who like that sensation from music.


Elsewhere in the interview, Pettit reflected on 20 years of Alexisonfire, making their self-titled debut when most of them were still teenagers, fans getting tattoos of Catholic school girls, and the band's incredibly dedicated fandom who kept their legacy going throughout their period of relative inactivity.

"What a gift for our fans to give us is relevance, the ability to go and play a show somewhere to a full room of people and not struggle to sell tickets and stuff like that," the singer added. "I'm really grateful that we're still capable of doing that."

Alexisonfire recently received a hero's welcome in Toronto, where they filled the city's east-end venue, History, playing through the hits for free in preparation for their current North American tour. That trek is due to bring them home to St. Catharines over Canada Day weekend, where they'll play their Born & Raised concert series alongside some of the country's best and brightest.

This is all, of course, to mark the release of their forthcoming fifth studio album Otherness, which arrives June 24 through Dine Alone Records.

Read Pettit's interview with Metal Injection here.