Who better to navigate this winter wonderland than Father Christmas? Not jolly old St. Nick. I’m talking about Toronto indie band Father Christmas. The band’s desert-pop sound will have you channeling summer 1987. I chatted with front man Kyle Peters about the band’s next steps and their home in Toronto’s indie music scene.
You’ve been playing as Father Christmas for four years. How has it evolved?
KP: Father Christmas started out as a recording project in college where I’d often be recording / writing songs on my laptop in class just to remember them. That grew into a live band playing shows around Toronto. It’s evolved a lot over that time, going through various members, but I feel like we have a bunch of great musicians / people with our current line-up.
How do you find & give support from fellow bands in Toronto?
KP: I think the best way to lend support to other local bands is to go see them play live. Support their live shows and check out their music online. My drummer Ara and I were talking about this the other day; it’s one thing to just play a show with a band but it’s another to actually check them out before hand, listen to their music, then have a chat with them before / after the show. You may not play another show or see them again but it goes a long way to show interest and support their music.
Reviewers say your music sounds ‘nostalgic’. What does the word mean to you?
KP: Haha I kind of get where they’re coming from. I’ve always been into looking to the past for inspiration. I grew up in a music-loving household where my parents were always playing cassettes and vinyl. I even released the first LP last year on cassette through my friend’s tape label. I try and play with musical ideas / instrumentation that people have heard before and can identify with. I think I’ll always have that nostalgic relationship with music based on my influences but I just try and write catchy-pop tunes that people can relate to.
What’s next for the band?
KP: Were playing a great show this Friday with our Halifax pals. Father Christmas is putting out another record later this year and going on an eastern Canadian tour in August. We’ll probably do another music video cause those are always fun to do.
Their videos are a fun blend of old and new.
KP: Our first video we put out featured puppets and my buddy Joe from TVO Kids so I could see where people get the [nostalgic] reference.
What’s your dream show to play?
KP: Not sure if I have a dream show. I’d like to play an outdoor festival this year like a Hillside. We’re planning a tour out east this year so it’ll be great to step outside the city to play to new crowds.
What’s your favourite festival as a performer? As an attendee?
KP: Father Christmas hasn’t played any festivals yet but my favourite festival to go to is a toss-up between Coachella and Lollapalooza. My lady and I have been for the past 3 years to Lolla in Chicago and its been a great experience every time. It’d be like throwing this big multi-stage concert in the middle of Trinity Bellwoods Park.