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Ford Pier

Having cut his teeth playing a variety of instruments in a host of bands in a panoply of styles throughout his youth, Ford Pier set his hand in earnest to writing and performing his own songs in the mid-1990's. His stated objective was to effectively fuse Black Flag and Richard Wagner in a pop song, but kept on thwarting his own design with a melodicism he was powerless to escape, and a deft lyricism which drew attention to itself. In a good way.

His '95 debut release on Wrong Records, Meconium, was a 14-song mosaic of raging post-punk, true-blue country, folk balladry, and avant-garde soul of which The Vancouver Sun's Katherine Monk was moved to write, "If one indie release could speak for the West Coast, this is the one."

Former bandmate Joey Shithead of D.O.A. released the sophomore offering, 12-Step Plan, 11-Step Pier, in 1999 on his Sudden Death label. The record's denser, almost symphonic character was a nod to the amount of chamber music Pier had been composing, and the neo-classical-inflected orchestrations he had been doing for Vancouver songwriter Veda Hille, with whom he toured Europe and North America extensively.

The performing rhythm section he had built up around himself at this time formed the basis for a deliberately scaled-down thirteen-song collection released gratis on his website in 2000. Entitled Besides, it acted as a clearing-house for some of Pier's more straightforward genre-identifiable songs, and commenced the bow-drawing process for the next full album.

That record was entitled Pier-ic Victory, and was released in 2004 by Six Shooter Records. Working for two years on and off with producer Michael Phillip Wojewoda, Ford issued his strongest statement yet of true pan-disciplinary pop, playing up formerly latent groove-oriented elements in the music to compliment the expanded orchestral colours and more extreme noise elements. It was enthusiastically received by press and public alike, and led to more touring throughout Canada and Europe, sharing the stage with the likes of The Organ, The Weakerthans, NoMeansNo, Daniel Johnston, The Constantines, and Sarah Harmer.

He also found time to appear on records by Buttless Chaps, Great Aunt Ida, and Martin Tielli, perform regularly as a guest with The Sadies, The Rheostatics, Carolyn Mark and others, continue to produce chamber and orchestral arrangements for artists such as Ron Sexsmith

Summer of 2007 saw Volume I of his next collection of work, a six-song EP, released electronically and on 12" vinyl through Calgary's Saved By Vinyl Records. Entitled Organ Farming, it diplays a comparitively austere sonic pallette, as Ford, drummer Don Kerr, and the returning Michael Phillip Wojewoda, as well as guests from Weakerthans, Rheostatics, FemBots, and others, seek to answer the question, "If you were to ditch all those bassoons and stuff and make a Rock album, what would it sound like?"

Volume II is a full-length 10-Song album entitled Adventurism, to be released in March of 2009. Several of the songs from both are already live favourites and are being hotly anticipated by many around the globe.

Upcoming Events for Ford Pier

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