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You Say Party! We Say Die!
You Say Party! We Say Die relax from the worries of world conquest.

You Say Party! We Say Die!

You Say Party! We Say Die! have exlpoded out of Vancouver to take on the world (except for the USA)

by Scott Thomson

Vancouver’s You Say Party! We Say Die!  seem to have a lot on their plate these days.

Between releasing their latest record, entitled XXXX, earlier in the year and finishing up yet another cross Canada tour, you could assume the band would be looking at some time off. But, when you are dealing with immigration lawyers, and gearing up to play a show at the 2010 Vancouver Olympic games, you won’t likely find much down time.

We like the intimacy of the small venues.We get really charged up when we can really connect with the crowd.

This is the current reality for the band. In October of 2006, the band found itself in a situation no band wants to see themselves in. Just a few months before releasing their second record, 2007’s Lose All Time, founding member, and bassist Stephen O’Shea  was denied entry into the United States for a period of five years.

Currently, the band is working with lawyers to get the ban lifted, but the group has had to focus on other markets, other then the world’s largest.

“We got to do a lot of Asia and Europe (touring) because of our ban.” says vocalist Becky Ninkovic. “We just focused more on those areas. We get to see a whole lot more of the world.”

Speaking from somewhere in Quebec, via a phone call, Ninkovic says they “are working really hard with our immigration lawyer right now to get Stephen in.”

“We are just trying to make the best of it and try as hard as we can to get it (the ban) lifted.” she says. “To play without him would be so weird. It is a discussion we keep coming back to, and problem solve it, but there is no easy answer, obviously.”

We were able to communicate more freely with each other, and with less fear.

The band is finishing up their latest tour. It has been one of many times they have traveled across this country. Along the way, they are playing a large variety of places. From little in-store performances, to larger venues like Toronto’s Phoenix nightclub, she says    “For the most part our show stays strong and energetic, despite the size.”

“We like the intimacy of the small venues.” Ninkovic says. “We get really charged up when we can really connect with the crowd. When you are on higher stages you lose that connection, or it is harder to attain that connection.”

You Say Party! We Say Die!
You Say Party! We Say Die!

The band is on the road to promote their latest disc, XXXX, which has found itself firmly on the !Earshot charts since its release. Ninkovic says she feels “proud” of this record. “I feel a sense of pride and accomplishment that I have never felt with any other recording.”
 
“You are your own worst critic.” she says. “When I listen to them (the older material), I can hear the tension in my voice and remember the feeling I had in the studio. With this album I can listen to it and feel happy the whole way through. It just feels so good.”

A lot of reviews have mentioned a change in the band’s direction, noting a much softer sound then You Say Party! We Say Die! are known for.

“It was something we couldn’t help.” Ninkovic says. “We were growing so much as people. It wasn’t something we thought about doing but it just started happening. We did consciously choose to be open hearted with each other during the songwriting process. In the past, people were wanting to write their own parts and not be told what to do.”
 
“We were able to communicate more freely with each other, and with less fear.” she says.

Along with trying to get their bassist across the border, the band is gearing up for a performance at the the 2010 Vancouver games. A decision the band did not take lightly. The band’s drummer Devon Clifford has worked with the homeless, in Vancouver, in his non-musical life, and with all of the controversy surrounding the city’s plan to clean up the streets for the games, the decision to play a show was one the band had to talk about at length.

“It is a mixed feeling.” Ninkovic says. “Devon works on the Upper East Side (of Vancouver) and he sees the effects of the Olympics the most right now. There was a big talk in the van and we were going to decide whether we were going to do it or not. It was a good amount of money, and it seemed like a good opportunity, yet we were all feeling this hesitancy inside, as well. We know how it is effecting the homeless community.”

To come to grips with their decision, the band has decided upon spreading some good will with their paycheque from that show.

“The way we were able to come to some peace about the decision to do the show, was that we decided we were going to donate half of the money, from that show, to an organization, The Pivot Legal Society (www.pivotlegal.org) that helps provide legal aid to the homeless.” Ninkovic says. “It will directly help them with that they are dealing with.”


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