Secret Broadcast – NXNE 2012 Emerging Artist Spotlight

Secret Broadcast

Check out our recap of Secret Broadcasts’ EP Release party here and also check out our complete NXNE Coverage here
June 10 2012 – For the 18th straight year, North By Northeast (NXNE) is happening in Toronto from June 11th to the 17th 2012. NXNE is a music festival, conference, and even a film festival all rolled into one. NXNE is the most anticipated summer music event in Canada and aims to bring exposure to Canadian music of all genres and in general to support the Canadian music industry.  Over 650 bands and 40 films converge for 7 days in Toronto and put us on the map in terms of large artistic and creative gatherings. Modeled after the fabled South By Southwest (SXSW) in Austin, we are very pleased that Toronto is hosting NXNE and we are certain that NXNE will grow in both number of attendees and stature in the music industry (much like Toronto’s International Film Festival has). SXSW is plagued by over-commercialization and unless you’re deeply embedded in the industry you can forget about watching the big names. NXNE will also feature large free performances at Yonge-Dundas Square for four nights with the Flaming Lips being the main attraction on June 16.
After we weeded through all the bands bios found here and listened to their music, we were still left with a long list of bands that we were interested in finding out more about. We approached some of our favourite bands to request interviews for our Artist Spotlight series. Today we set our focus on a band from Calgary (now Toronto) named Secret Broadcast. All bands we talked to are asked similar questions to each other so we can get to know them better. The description on Secret Broadcasts’ NXNE bio page reads:
“Blending influences from last decade’s post-punk revival and more conventional classic rock, The Secret Broadcast sounds like a late-eighties, Chicago-based Radiohead”
(From the NXNE website)
Here is what they had to say to us:
1.    Hey Secret Broadcast, thanks for taking the time out to talk to us. Let’s start off with the obligatory introductions. Who’s in the band and what instrument does everyone rock?
Secret Broadcast: Matt Lightstone sings lead and plays guitar, Keith Heppler’s on the drums, Jeffrey Lewis is on bass and sings backup, and we’ve recently added Joshua Parrett to the lineup as second guitarist.
2.    How about the history of the band, when did you get started and how did it happen?
Secret Broadcast: We always enjoy telling people that we met in a hot yoga class, but the story really isn’t that sexy.  We formed in Calgary in 2006 through an ad in the paper. We built up a pretty strong following out west and things started to happen pretty quickly for us. We played festivals like Virgin Fest, CMJ, NXNE and CMW, opened for acts like Metric, Tokyo Police Club, Matthew Good and The Stills, and started to sell out our hometown shows. About a year ago we relocated the band to Toronto, recorded a new EP with Jon Drew (Tokyo Police Club, Arkells, Fucked Up) and signed to eOne Music Canada. Our new EP was released May 22nd and we’re currently touring in support of the album.
3.    Who are some of your musical influences?
Secret Broadcast: Our influences are pretty diverse and would likely be different depending on what day you asked us.  Right now I would say Jack White, Queens of The Stone Age, David Bowie, Broken Bells, Nirvana, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Talking Heads, and The Dandy Warhols.
4.    We found you as we were searching through the mountain of artists being featured at the 2012 NXNE. Why should a music fan come and see your show instead of all the other choices available to them?
Secret Broadcast: Two words: Spontaneity and Energy. Our shows can be unpredictable and the crowds seem to get a bit crazy during our sets.  Keith might end up in the crowd with his drums, one of us might jump off the bass drum, and on more than one occasion there has been public nudity (not us). People enjoy seeing an engaging live show. They want to feel like they are a part of something, and we do everything we can to deliver that experience.  
Secret Broadcast

5.    What is your favorite single line of lyrics the band has written and why?
Secret Broadcast: “I don’t believe a thing they say even though you are covered in kerosene, the talk of the town. We could light up the city or burn, burn, burn it down.”

That’s a lyric from the song, “Don’t Feed The Crows” from our new album which I particularly like.  It’s an unconventional love song about two outcasts running away together, and I think this lyric has a great flow and really communicates the feelings I had when I wrote it.

6.      What does the rest of 2012 and 2013 hold for you?
Secret Broadcast: We’ll be touring, writing and recording our new full-length record.

7.    Imagine that you were asked to be the opener for any band’s world tour (both current and historical). Which band and tour would be your dream opening gig.  
Secret Broadcast: My vote would be to open for Nirvana during their In Utero tour. No other band has been able to match the energy and intensity of Nirvana’s live show, and I wish I would have had a chance to see them when they were around. 
Secret Broadcast
8.    What is the future of the music industry? With the concept of the album and physical CD’s facing extinction, how will we be consuming music in 10 years? Are the economics feasible for emerging artists?
Secret Broadcast: Your guess is as good as mine. The future is very uncertain in the music industry, but as long as people are making good music you’ll find someone that will want to listen, whether it’s on a CD, streaming service, or chip implanted in our brains.
9.    Where can people get your music/CD, is it being sold anywhere? 
Secret Broadcast: Our new EP, Hungry Ghost is now available in stores across Canada, on iTunes and at our shows.

10.  At the end of 2011 we did our picks for top 10 albums of 2011. What album do you think we should include in our top 10 albums of 2012 article? 
Secret Broadcast: You should definitely include Jack White’s ‘Blunderbuss’. From start to finish this album is incredible and it’s more addictive than popping bubble wrap.
Secret Broadcast
11.     Any closing remarks for our readers?

Secret Broadcast: We’ve decided to do the unthinkable and call every single person that buys our new EP.  If you purchase a physical copy of Hungry Ghost, you’ll find an email address under the CD. You just need to email us your phone number, and Keith, Jeff, Josh, or myself will give you a call to thank you for your support. We’ve called about 50 people so far and it has been a lot of fun! Check out the video about the band call.

Thanks so much to Secret Broadcast. We hope that you can see them live. They are playing Friday June 15th at the El Mocambo (Upstairs) at 9pm for NXNE. The band’s website is and as you would expect they are on Twitter and Facebook. In the meantime check out their video below from YouTube.

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