When Autumn Hill, Mike Robins and Tareya Green’s JUNO and Canadian Country Music Association award nominated group, went on hiatus in 2016, Robins wasn’t sure what to do next. The guitarist and singer-songwriter considered embarking on a solo career but couldn’t shake the feeling of wanting a band. And then he got a phone call.
Bassist Randie Van Gorp and former Autumn Hill drummer Andrew Mackay are childhood friends and have played with the likes of Fefe Dobson and Shawn Desman. Like Robins, they both were in between projects and looking to start a new band. They got in touch with Robins and East Adelaide was born.
“Everything just came together in this serendipitous moment,” says Robins. “They had a few songs and I had a few songs and we re-worked everything to create this East Adelaide sound.”
Toronto-based East Adelaide are a country band at their core. On their debut EP, East Adelaide, inspired by country music’s storytelling roots, recount honest tales of love and heartbreak. But the trio’s varied respective past gigs have bled into their music, splashing it with pop and rock sounds.
“You Don’t Get To Love Me” has a murky rock undertone to compliment the track’s melancholic narrative about an affair’s end. The nostalgic “Young Hearts in Old Cars,” on the other hand, is euphoric and full of a youthful energy - it begs to be played while driving down a country road with the windows down - while “Heaven” is a poppy celebration of finding perfection.
The East Adelaide sound created by veteran players Robins, Mackay, and Van Gorp is a fresh spin on country traditions. Together, they are keen to share it and get back to doing what they love, playing music.
“The three of us have such an extensive background in live touring - it’s our favourite thing to do - so I think our dream here to get our music out there and play in front of as many people as we possibly can,” Robins says. “This is a thing that the three of us love and is deeply rooted in us.”