Wintersleep wins three Music N.S. awards

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LIVERPOOL – Wintersleep, a band that two Pictou County natives play in, was a top winner at the Music Nova Scotia Awards this past weekend. Loel Campbell, who plays drums, and Mike Bigelow, on bass, are originally from Pictou County in the alternative rock band.

The band’s latest album, “Hello Hum,” was named alternative recording, group recording and recording of the year at the Music Nova Scotia Awards.

Campbell, originally from Stellarton, said the band was glad to have its record recognized in their home province.

“It’s really encouraging for us, especially on album number five,” Campbell said over the phone while on the ferry to Victoria, B.C.  “It reaffirms that people are still interested in what we’re doing and we’re glad it’s been so well received.”

In a statement on the band’s website, it describes the album as the accumulation of late night voice memos, hallucinogenic dreams of Paul Schaeffer, and sound check experiments recorded while touring.

The statement says the band “fleshed out these new ideas with Scottish producer/friend Tony Doogan and Dave Fridmann at the legendary Tarbox Road Studios in upstate New York,” late in the summer of 2011. The end product was the award-winning “Hello Hum” album. The statement describes the album as “glowing melodies… backed by rhythms that can stand as the skeletons of songs or be studied for their subtle complexities,” it reads. “Guitars and keyboards weave together in fits of sonic weirdness that somehow shine with pop charm.”

Campbell said the band was getting ready to play a concert in Edmonton when they found out about their success at the MNS awards.

“Just before we went on, we were contacted by someone at the awards,” Campbell said. “We were happy when we found out. We were just concerned about the fact that we weren’t there to accept the awards.”

Wintersleep is travelling Western Canada at the moment as part of its tour that started in Europe in September. Performing out west meant they couldn’t attend the awards this past weekend.

Campbell said the tour has been a great experience for the band. He said they’ve been well received across Europe and Canada and they’ve played for great audiences.

 “We’ve been really pleased with our performances and the tour has gone over really well,” he said. “We’re just winding down on the tour now. Our last show is Nov. 20 and after we’ll have some time off, which will be nice.”

They played a show in Victoria on Tuesday, and from there the band will go on to tour the western United States.

Campbell said he’ll definitely be spending some time in Pictou County over the holidays and he’ll be glad to be back home for a bit.

After their break, they’ll be back on tour again with a 17 concerts in the U.K. in February with the band Frightened Rabbit.

Geographic location: Pictou County, Nova Scotia, Victoria LIVERPOOL Stellarton Western Canada Europe New York Edmonton United States U.K.

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