Marianas Trench, Sheepdogs come to Edmonton

Marianas Trench GigCity EdmontonIt’s no coincidence that Marianas Trench sounds a little like Nickelback. The shiny pop-rock band from Vancouver was initially signed by 604 Records – owned by Nickelback frontman Chad Kroeger, who knows a hit when he hears it.

And so it’s no surprise we now have one of the biggest pop-rock crossover successes of the 2010s. Marianas Trench is coming back to Edmonton to play Friday, April 1, 2016, at Rexall Place, with the opening act Walk Off the Earth. Tickets are $35 to $70 and go on sale Friday. The VIP pre-sale starts Tuesday.

Led by the flambouyant frontman Josh Ramsay, the band floats the Never Say Die tour behind their latest album, which is not called Never Say Die, but Astoria. Apparently there’s some sort of 1980s theme here. Ramsay says in a press release, “Mousse up that hair, throw on your best ripped acid wash, and get ready to join the fight to make dancing legal once again. When this baby hits 88 miles per hour, you’re gonna see some serious shit. Can you survive Astoria? The only other thing capable of generating that much energy is a bolt of lightning.”

Still don’t know what Astoria means. Find out at the show.

Meanwhile, a number of the Trench’s other songs continue to scorch the radio airwaves – many of them dealing with love – plus the diabolically clever Pop 101, in which the art of pop songwriting is parodied as it’s celebrated in a perfect piece of pop songwriting. So clever it hurts. Frank Zappa would’ve loved it.

Sheepdogs barking at the door

Next up on the 2016 concert schedule is a beloved indie rock band from that hotbed of indie rock, Saskatoon: The Sheepdogs.

From a kick-start on the cover of the Rolling Stone, the band has backed up the hype with solid Southern-fried Northern prairie rock. You know if when you hear it. The Sheepdogs are touring to support their latest album, Future Nostalgia, whose title alone says a lot about their appeal.

The Sheepdogs play Monday, Feb. 15 at Union Hall. Tickets to this no-minors show are $32.50 and go on sale Friday.