While rowdy Vancouver vagrants Ladyhawk’s live shows may be lacking in frequency these days, they more than make up for it in ferocity and fun — at least, that’s what bassist Sean Hawryluk thinks.
“Just getting onstage with those guys, you get jazzed,” Hawryluk says. “We just love playing music together and love each other, we’re all such good old friends that any time we get together, it’s just crazy. It’s funny, though, because when you really think about it, we’re also friends who have matured a lot in ten years, it’s crazy.”
Since releasing their seething and murky masterpiece, No Can Do, in 2012, the hard-hitting grimy indie-rock quartet have lain pretty low, mostly due to lead singer Duffy Driediger moving to Summerland B.C. with his girlfriend that same year. Since then, their raucous live shows have been few and far between, even more so since Driediger decided to take a trip to Asia this year.
While it may seem like they’ve been left high and dry, the band is actually enjoying some downtime and Hawryluk thinks that these days, there’s a bit too much expectation placed on bands to be constantly churning out work, anyway.
“I think that record labels would love to see that, you know, a record every one or two years, but it’s just not realistic. There should be an emphasis on quality not quantity,” he says. “I do feel like taking your time and making something great is very valid, it’s super valuable. It’s been nice to watch our music resonate and, you know, we put out that last record two years ago and it’s been cool to see how it’s evolved and how people react to it, just how it exists out there.”
The band is celebrating their 10-year anniversary this year, a milestone that Hawryluk has a hard time wrapping his head around, saying it kind of just snuck up on them.
“You’d be surprised how fast time really flew by. But yeah, I’m glad it still feels rad to be in a band at this point. It feels like a mark of distinction, you know? Like we’ve aged well,” he says, laughing.
“I think we’re less self indulgent then we used to be as a band, you know. I think we’ve matured a bit, and things got a lot more concise. We don’t indulge in two- or three-minute-long guitar rock-outs,” he says, chuckling again. “I guess that’s one noted difference.”
As for the inevitable question about making a new record, there were plans in place but Hawryluk says they’ve taken kind of a detour as of right now.
“The original concept was to get us on the road, so we could get a bit of money in place to record a record, but we haven’t really been having the time to do that. I mean, Duffy’s still in Asia, so I’m not really sure at this point, we’re going to have to talk about it when he gets back and we start getting ready for the tour.”
Whatever the future may hold, the immediate future of a Canadian tour with eclectic troubadour and national treasure Shotgun Jimmie has the band pretty stoked, regardless of what transpires afterwards.
“Jimmie’s an old friend, so that’s going to be great, and a couple of the Ladyhawk guys are going to be backing him up on tour, so that’s cool. It’s always crazy to see him play with different people,” Hawryluk says. “We’re doing a lot of small shows this time around, playing with a lot of regional bands; it’s going to be really fun. I’m honestly just excited to get back out there and start ripping it up. But, yeah, as for the future, that’s some pretty open stuff, I guess!”
Catch Ladyhawk on tour at the Windsor Hotel (Winnipeg) on April 24, at the Pawn Shop (Edmonton) on April 26 and at Commonwealth (Calgary) on April 27.
You can also catch them in Vancouver at the Biltmore Cabaret May 2.
By Nick Laugher