By Jaime Burnet
For the kids learning the opening notes of Deep Purple’s “Smoke on the Water” on guitars, using gum to tack AC/DC posters above their beds, and dreaming of rock stardom, The Reason’s Cam Bordignon has some words of inspiration.
“All we’ve ever wanted to do was play music,” says the drummer for the band. “When we were little we had the shitty beginner’s music stuff, and we all sucked, and you know, we’d dream about being rock stars, not to say we are or anything, but now we’re sort of fulfilling that dream, and it’s a total trip.”
See kids? Dreams really can come true! Although these five guys from southern Ontario are experiencing fast success as The Reason, they all worked hard in previous bands, and continue to do so to maintain their level of achievement.
“It’s cool ’cause we’ve all worked super, super hard in other bands, and so it’s rad that everything’s coming together,” Cam says. “I used to be in a band with George, from Alexisonfire. It was like a pop-punk side project–we didn’t even have a name.”
The Canadian five-piece, consisting of Adam White on vocals, Erik Mikalauskas and James Nelan, both on guitar and vocals, Sean Palmer on bass, and Cam on drums, bring together their various musical influences to create a sound they describe as “melodic venge-core”.
“I love The Police,” says Cam. “I think Stewart Copeland is a genius. He’s definitely an idol of mine. I like a lot of reggae stuff too, like early Bob Marley, just cause they do a lot of the hi-hat work, and they accent stuff differently. I know Adam likes The Cure a lot. And when we’re on the road we listen to a lot of hip hop too, cause you play shows every night with punk rock bands, so you totally gotta switch it up and get the guitars out of your ear and just MC a little groove. If you listen to one style of music over and over and over again it’s just going to get so retardedly repetitive.”
As for the “melodic venge-core” label the band has given themselves, Cam explains, “The whole core thing… it’s like all the bands are doing the ‘hardcore,’ like if you put ‘core’ at the end of the name you get extra scene points or something. So it’s kind of a joke, but along with our genre, a lot of the lyrical stuff is more kind of sympathetic, and some of it’s kind of depressing, like the emo lyrics or whatever. I know Adam’s lyrics are a lot more, like, ‘instead of crying about it let’s just stand up and do it,’ or like, ‘fuck that’ sort of thing. It’s not like we’re avenging the musical scene. It’s sort of more lyrical based. The lyrics aren’t too whiny. They may sound whiny, but in fact they’re sort of vengeful.”
With White’s candid lyrics and the band’s melodic-meets-metal sound displayed on The Reason’s first full length, dubbed Ravenna, for the city that became the new seat of the Roman Empire in the fifth century, comes plenty of touring.
“We’re going to the States for four days and we’re jumping on the Alexisonfire/Moneen/Hopesfall tour. We’re all so, so stoked about that. They’re wicked bands and I think it’s gonna be a great opportunity for us to kind of break the ice in the States. And then we’re going out west with a band called Blue Skies at War, and we’re going all the way to Whistler and back and that’ll be awesome too.”
Not only will it be awesome for Cam to play in Whistler, but he might be able to fit in a longboarding trip. Hopefully, nothing will happen to endanger Bordignon’s performance this time around, especially after he and the band have put in so much to get to this point.
“I know our girlfriends kind of get mad at us and everything, ’cause we’re too busy with band stuff, but when you work really hard at something, it’s cool to sort of sit back and be like, ‘sweet, this is working,’ and you sort of see how it’s paying off. You’re like, ‘what I’m doing, that I’m spending all my time with and putting my heart and soul into, it’s working out,’ and it’s totally wicked. It’s a good feeling.”