Circus In Flames
Garage string band music of the Canadian south from Vancouver BC
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Past Shows (26)
In a career that began in the Vancouver independent music scene in the early 1980’s, over the years Doug Andrew has performed all over the US and Canada, sharing the stage with everyone from the Ramones, to Raffi, to Ramblin’ Jack Elliott. He is recognized as an accomplished singer-songwriter and respected by critics, peers and music fans alike. His current band, The Circus In Flames has produced two critically acclaimed CDs:
• The Circus In Flames - “Four-stars” (All Music Guide) - “A strong argument for indie release of the year” (Dirty Linen)
• A Little Bit Of Gasoline - “Brilliant. 9 out of 10” (Americana UK)
As well, The Circus In Flames were honoured to join such artists as Blue Rodeo, Gordon Lightfoot, Chris Hillman, and Corb Lund on the Stony Plain Records release of The Gift: A Tribute to Ian Tyson, and further honoured to have The Toronto Star choose their interpretation of “Someday Soon” as the Top Track on that album. All three CDs have received significant airplay on college radio and the CBC.
Andrew formed The Circus In Flames in the mid-90’s when asked to play at a friend’s St. Patrick’s Day bash. It has since grown to include various musicians, frequently touring Western Canada, appearing at several folk and music festivals and garnering critical acclaim. The band currently includes Brian Barr on mandolin & electric guitar, Phil Addington on bass, Brian Thalken on banjitar, and Ed Goodine on drums.
The group’s “unique but rooted musical vision” (Vue Weekly) has inspired the description “garage string band,” but its sound can be difficult to pin down. Although there is a certain familiarity about the music, stemming from its roots in traditional country, folk, and blues, at its heart are Andrew’s songs. The “slightly twisted, always interesting storyline lyrics” are delivered “with an energetic thrust that falls just shy of reckless abandon” says Peter North of The Edmonton Journal. He is “an untapped talent for wryly observant story-like essays,” writes The Vancouver Province’s Tom Harrison while Warren Footz of See Magazine says Andrew’s songs “should shuffle him off into the Canadian musical songwriting hierarchy.” The songs stand on their own, performed solo on guitar, or can work within the context of a band.
“Sheet metal country,” Doug Andrew describes the music. “It bangs and rattles and booms, generally making a fair amount of noise, but it can also be light and quiet. It can go from sounding like a runaway locomotive thundering down the mountain without any brakes, to a wind slipping through the forest at midnight.”