In Corona Corner, we are asking musicians how the outbreak has effected them, how did they adapt to the situation, what did they learn. Hard Rock outfit from Saskatoon, SK, Canada, Saintvicious, participated in our Quarantine Story. Read their Corona experience.
Hi! How are you doing during corona outbreak?
We’ve been doing alright. In Saskatchewan, where we live, we’ve been lucky to not have a huge problem with COVID. There’s still the paranoia in the air, and we still catch all this political noise about it, from the anti-masks and the vaccine conspiracies, but I mean if you log off of Facebook for a minute you’ll see people are doing okay. And living here, you’re accustomed to staying inside for half the year anyway because the winter’s gross, so it’s almost second nature.
What have you cancelled/postponed due coronavirus?
We had two Canadian tours shelved, and we were looking at getting visas to cross into the States for a west coast run. It sucks, for sure, but we haven’t reached a point yet where our livelihoods are impacted by not being able to play, so we’re fortunate. We’re definitely going to rack up the miles once everything’s figured out.
How the global coronavirus pandemic is directly impacting bands?
Money only comes in from merch. I mean, there’s show pay, but that’s usually just to cover travel expenses if you’re touring. And where do you sell most of your merch? At the table in the venue, so I guess for anything we’ve had, mixing costs or music videos, it’s been out of pocket. Some bands have been doing merch online right, though, but you’re definitely more excited to drop a few bones on a shirt when the band is in the building.
How are you keeping your fans during this chaotic period?
We just released a single, “Sticks + Stones”, on November 20th, and have a few more songs ready for the final mixing and everything. We’ll try to take a lot of video when we ever get together for recording, and just let everyone see what we’re trying to get up to with these little comp videos. I usually try to get the most embarrassing stuff on them, which I’m sure nobody in the band is fond of that.
What will metal look like when we re-emerge from isolation?
I think it’ll just become how it was again. Like metal is a vibe, there’s just an energy to being in a grungy dive-bar and having the blast-beats clip in the PA speakers while some dude spills beer all over the floor in a pit. As long as the love’s there, it won’t be anything to worry about.
Who will suffer the most after all: musicians, organizers promoters…
The venues and promoters are impacted first. The venues in Saskatoon have been super creative, though, and are focusing on like breakfasts and pizza delivery, just really great food. Also, they’ll have their own merch, and are selling shirts and hoodies with the club’s logo slapped on it, like they’re being opportunistic and that’s reassuring to see for the whole music scene here.
What is your isolation soundtrack?
I’ve been diving into a lot of hip-hop. There’s been a few drops this year that have been good, like Joyner Lucas’ “ADHD” album, Big Sean’s “Detroit 2”. But also Greg Puciato’s “Child Soldier: Creator of God” is my favorite from this year.
Besides gigs, what/whom do you miss the most?
Stand-up comedy. Thankfully there’s a lot of specials out there, and I got the whole George Carlin collection, but I guess that’s the same as live music, you can watch recordings but being in the room and being a part of the energy takes it to the next level.
Do you have any rehearsals during quarantine? If yes, how do they look like?
COVID was down really low in Saskatoon, up until this past month or two, so we were lucky enough that we got to sneak in a show at Black Cat in Saskatoon in late September. It was definitely the strangest show we had, with protocols on capacity and people had to sit down. Felt like you were bombing the whole time because you couldn’t see the response, but it went great! Was a good reminder that this is going to be worth the wait again, having that onstage rush.
Thank you so much for your time. Stay safe!