Exclaim! ‘There’s A Light Review’

Posted on: No Comments

The Karpinka Brothers get more ambitious on their sophomore release, but still exhibit the same freshly scrubbed charm that filled their 2008 debut, One Brick at a Time. The Saskatoon, SK brothers have stepped it up this time with a full band album that does justice to their simple melodies and vocal harmonies. There’s nostalgia in the air, along with rich arrangements and a modern edge that add depth to this solid crop of catchy, up-tempo pop songs. In opener “Save it for a Rainy Day,” the sonic sparkle is paired with yearning lyrics that add a hint of salty to the sweet. The undercurrent of sadness is most evident in the slightly spicier “By Your Side” and in the disconnect between chorus and verse in “Everybody Wants To Be My Friend.” The Karpinkas also temper the cheeriness of their compositions with covers of lovesick ballads, such as Nick Lowe’s “Rome Wasn’t Built in a Day” and Iron and Wine’s “Each Coming Night.”

Source: www.exclaim.ca/music/article/karpinka_brothers-theres_light

Brotherly Love

Posted on: No Comments

Craig Silliphant – Planet S

Published Thursday October 4, 2012

The Karpinkas are great musicians — and even better friends

I got a call from the receptionist at work on my birthday, telling me that a package had arrived for me.

“I wonder what it is?” I asked her. “Hate mail? A bomb? Anthrax?”

“It looks more like a record,” she laughed.

It was indeed a record — the new Karpinka Brothers album, There’s a Light.

As soon as I listened to it, I was reminded once again of why The Karpinka Brothers are one of Saskatoon’s favourite musical groups. Even the most cynical of hearts will be softened by this music; it’s just so damned earnest, likeable, and musically sound.

For those familiar with The K-Bros, the song that stands out right away is “Everybody Wants to be My Friend,” which could be ripped right from the lives of brothers Shawn and Aaron Karpinka. Not only do they share their love of music with the rest of us, they’re endlessly supportive of other musicians and writers — which is why pretty much everybody does indeed want to be their friend.

“The song comes from asking what real friendship is,” says Shawn Karpinka, “and we’re happy to be friends and bros to everyone.”

“I’m glad they love us,” adds Aaron Karpinka, “because we can only be the people that we are and we can only sound the way we naturally sound.”

That sound is a Saskatchewan take on sibling duo acts like The Everly Brothers or The Louvin Brothers, full of buoyant acoustic guitars and mandolins. At centre stage are pure voices and dulcet melodies that remind you of the comfort of family and friends. Their sound has evolved since the first album, but only in that it’s delivered with more confidence.

“On the first album we were like a young Anakin Skywalker,” jokes Aaron. “Now we have that Vader swagger.”

They shed their Padawan braids by testing the songs in some unique locations, rather than just sneaking them into the odd set at a bar gig — playing them in care homes, at libraries for kids, and anywhere people wanted to be moved by music. It helped them craft the songs by seeing what people responded to (and it didn’t hurt their lovable rep either).

“We started to play often in a care home, and heard people who have a hard time speaking sing along,” says Shawn. “Others have told us how our songs have helped them get through hard times, so we’ve realized how we can affect people with our music, and how much of a gift it is to play for them.”

For the first time, The Karpinka Brothers will be spreading the word outside Saskatoon, with a full band on a western Canadian tour. You can see them prior to their departure at the album release show at Amigos on October 12th, with Sarah Farthing opening.

“Aaron will be playing electric guitar for the first time with us,” says Shawn, “and it will be the first chance to buy our album on vinyl, which took a lot of time and effort to make.”

“[It’s the] K-Bros return,” says Aaron. “It’s going to be the Return of the Ukrainian Jedis!”

Source: www.planetsmag.com/story.php?id=971

Local Folk Duo Release New Album

Posted on: No Comments

by Chris Morin – Ominocity

Saskatoon’s Karpinka Brothers have quietly released their latest full-length album entitled There’s A Light.

Although rumour has it the boys are waiting on some vinyl pressings of the new album, it is likely that an actual album release show is likely imminent on the horizon. After all, it isn’t official until there is a party. Just sayin’.

Additionally, the Brothers will be appearing at MoSoFEST on Saturday, June 16 opening for Regina’s Andy Shauf.

Musically, having already garnered comparisons to Simon & Garfunkel, The Everly Brothers and Tom Petty, There’s A Light is an easy listen that is life-affirming, and laden with plenty of vocal hooks and breezy acoustic guitar leads.

Lead track “Save It For A Rainy Day” is an optimistic equivalent of a hug – an anthem for the Karpinka Brothers if there ever was one – and could easily contain a few handclaps along with the chorus. Just sayin’. The rest of the album follows suit with a flowing, intimate folk style that works in both rock venues and house shows.

But, having been entrenched into the local indie rock scene and being a fixture at pretty much every show no matter what genre, who exactly are the Karpinka Brothers?

Besides being hands down the nicest guys to ever don matching western wear shirts in Saskatoon.

Ominocity caught up with the dynamic duo for a quick infomercial-style chat presented Q ‘n’ A style.

You’re welcome.

Ominocity: First band you were in?

Aaron Karpinka: “As a young boy I put some elastic bands on a hockey stick and shredded some solos. So technically my first band was a solo project.”

Shawn Karpinka: “I was the front man in a cover band in high school that did all the grunge hits.”

OM: Favourite food?

AK: “Kraft Dinner. Usually over the pot while sitting in the dark.”

SK: “Post gig poutine at Vangelis after rocking. The poutine routine.”

OM: Eye colour?

AK: “Brown. They have also been described as ‘dreamy’ in color.”

SK: “Green as the promise of spring.”

OM: What board game are you best at?

AK: “Fireball Island. It’s from the 1980’s. Very rare. Very amazing game.”

SK: “Jenga. Where are we going? Higher.”

OM: Most memorable Karpinka Bros show?

AK: “Playing at TCU place for the Gordon Lightfoot concert. It felt like a dream the whole time. We brought our parents and met him after the show. There were cheesecakes in the greenroom. They were huge.”

SK: “The Parkridge Centre in Saskatoon, a care home we love to play, hearing their voices sing back to us.”

OM: Which K Bro would win in an arm wrestling match?

AK: “Contests and competition between us is forbidden.”

SK: “Shame on you.”

OM: Boxers or briefs?

AK: “Boxers. Sometimes.”

SK: “Briefs. Always.”

OM: Do you have any cool scars?

AK: “Only mental scars of being rejected by women.”

SK: “Mine are all healed. (Through music.)”

OM: Ideal line-up featuring you and any band who would open for you?

AK: “I always feel bad when people have to open for us. I don’t want to do that to them.”

SK: “We would just let them go last. Then we’d help carry their gear.”

And there you have it!

Source: www.ominocity.com/2012/06/05/karpinka-brothers-theres-a-light-review