The Night is Young. The Young is You. The You is Awesome.

…Frankly, no one in Canadian music these days makes a sound like this. Sylvie did, with synthesised keyboard loops and teasing washes of guitar squall over the driving beats from that amazing rhythm section. Arenas, cold and silent as tombs, await their crazed sound.

Renowned for an unbelievable live show and praised for their blend of post-punk structures and indie-pop melodies, Sylvie is finally back in the saddle again.

Three years since the release of “An Electric Trace”, Sylvie is brimming with anticipation to present “Trees And Shade Are Our Only Fences”  to the world.  Recorded and produced by the legendary J. Robbins (Against Me, Jets to Brazil, Jawbreaker) in Baltimore, MD, “Trees And Shade Are Our Only Fences” is true to form, succinctly balancing a rich musical complexity and persuasively melodic harmonies. 

Noticeably more focused, the album’s gorgeous arrangements have a more finely tuned sense of precision.  The addition of Erin Passmore on keyboards and vocals results in a welcomed new layer of pop happiness and stunning group harmonies.

Lyrically the band expresses a sense of cautious hope for the future through songs about environmental fears, war, heartbreak and the passing of time. Lead singer Joel Passmore explains,

“The lyrics on this album tell more stories; they reflect the reasons we have to open our mouths, not just filler.  In some ways they have a more somber tone, but in other cases songs talk about first loves and coming home.  There is a bit of trepidation about the future at times, but I think it’s balanced with a light heartedness in the music.  I guess it reflects our hopes as well.”

Formed in Regina, SK in 1999, Sylvie debuted with their first full-length album I Wish I Was Driving in 2003, garnering the band a nomination for outstanding independent album of the year at the WCMAs. “An Electric Trace” was released in 2005 through Smallman Records.  Sylvie has played with Minus the Bear, Pony Up, Hot Hot Heat, Controller Controller, Death From Above 1979, Wintersleep, and Small Sins, and has showcased at CMJ, NXNE, CMW and SXSW. In 2006 Sylvie won the CBC Galaxie Rising Star Award, which was presented to the band during a live CBC recording at NXNE.  Sylvie was deemed ‘The star attraction’ by the Toronto Star in advance of Canadian Music Week, 2006. 

“Trees And Shade Are Our Only Fences”, the bands second full length on Smallman was released in late 2008. Wednesday Records in the USA picked up the album for a US release in March 2009, and since that time the band has been playing across North America on their own and with the likes of headliners such as Minus The Bear.

Band Members

Joel Passmore - vocals/guitarist
Riva Farrell Racette – bassist/vocals
Chris Notenboom – guitarist/vocals/keys
Jeff Romanyk - drummer
Erin Passmore - keys/vocals

Trees And Shade Are Our Only Fences

Trees And Shade Are Our Only Fences
SMR038 | CD, Released 10/21/2008
Buy CD | Buy on iTunes

  • The Fences EP
    The Fences EP
    SMR 040 | Digital, Released 9/29/2008
    Buy on iTunes
  • An Electric Trace
    An Electric Trace
    SMR029 | CD, Released 10/25/2005
    Buy CD | Buy on iTunes
  • I Wish I Was Driving
    I Wish I Was Driving
    Does Everyone Stare? | CD, Released 10/30/2003

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Rob Wright @ SL Feldman
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