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Local band ‘in disbelief’  after winning Juno Award

Juno winners - Local metal band Mandroid Echostar won a Juno Award for best metal/hard music album of the year on April 2 in Ottawa. Band members, with two RCMP officers are, from left: Sam Pattison, James Krul, Michael Ciccia, Matthew Huber-Kidby, Stephen Richards and Adam Richards.  Submitted photo

Local band ‘in disbelief’ after winning Juno Award

by Jaime Myslik

GUELPH - Local progressive metal band Mandroid Echostar has won a Juno Award.

On April 2, the Guelph-based band members received the surprise of their lives, winning the Juno Award for best metal/hard music album of the year for their first ever full-length album, Coral Throne.

“We were honoured just to be nominated,” said guitarist and Arthur native James Krul.

“A couple of the other bands in the category we’re really big fans of, like Devin Townsend and Protest the Hero. So just being nominated alongside them was awesome enough ... none of us expected to win.”

Attending a Juno Awards ceremony, held this year at the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa,  was a first for Mandroid Echostar, whose category was near the end of the show.

“We had to wait quite a while so we were getting pretty nervous, but it was all worth it,” Krul said. “We were just laughing and looking at each other in disbelief.”

The entire band, consisting of Krul, Sam Pattison, Michael Ciccia, Matthew Huber-Kidby, Stephen Richards and Adam Richards, worked together to write Coral Throne.

“We usually write the instrumentals first and then come up with the melodies and write the lyrics to that,” Krul said.

“Our drummer Matt actually writes all the lyrics and this one was sort of inspired by the history of colonialism in North America.

“So much of what we have is built on the backs of Native Canadians ... so that was sort of our inspiration for writing the album.”

Krul said the collaboration works because of the respect the band members have for one another.

“I think everyone really enjoys everyone’s ideas,” he said.

“We have a lot of shared influences and we really like the kind of stuff that each other come up with, so I think ... just that mutual respect I guess is probably where it comes from.”

While the majority of the band has been together since 2011, Krul said he was in a band with Stephen and Adam Richards from Grade 7 through high school, when they all attended Arthur Public School, Arthur High School and Wellington Heights Secondary School.

“We’ve been in other bands and stuff like that when these guys started hanging out with Sam and [Matt] our drummer and starting this,” Krul said.

“I really wanted to be involved so I sort of just started showing up and they let me stay in the band, which was pretty cool.”

Now the band is working on writing its second album but Krul doesn’t think the Juno win will impact the process.

“I don’t think it’s going to change the amount of pressure we put on ourselves,” he said.

“We’ve never written expecting that we’re going to get an award … we just write what we think sounds cool, so I think that’s certainly not going to change now.”

April 7, 2017


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