altaThis album is the product of a unique collaboration between some of the East Coast’s finest talents. The voice is Jenn Grant (Juno-nominee and keeper of one of Canada’s finest voices) along with producers Charles Austin (Super Friendz, Al Tuck, Buck 65) and Graeme Campbell (Buck 65, Jerry Granelli).

Even as a side project, it comes off really well. The name of the album, Dreamsphere, represents the overall tone. It’s soft, meditative, and well, dreamy. Upon first listen, the vibe evoked memories of Julee Cruise and the Twin Peaks soundtrack (and her solo records). This is mood music for when the party is over and you’re resting somewhere comfortably between drunk and hung over.

There is a lot of variety in songs and approaches over the course of these 11 tracks. Awaken Waiting” is probably the most “rock” of the set, with uptempo percussion and is downright danceable. Think late-80s The Cure and you’re in the right ballpark.

Norwegian Jewel” comes off like a country-styled lullaby. BTOcean” (I really hope that’s an intentional Classic Rock pun) is the lead single and is a great pop-infused mellow track. But even if the album as a whole isn’t quite working for you, either stick around or skip over to the final song, You Were a Kid Too”. Less of the electronics on this track, it’s a mix of Primitives and Television.

As you can plainly see, this album is a healthy mix of influences with three great talents doing their best to stretch out and try something new. It doesn’t fire on all cylendars, but it’s a fine record. Album #2, and hopefully there is one, will undoubtedly gel a lot more and really kick some mellow ass.

Dreamsphere is available on iTunes and Amazon. The trio is on tour, including a stop tonight in Ottawa at Zaphods. For tour dates, see below.


Aqua Alta on tour

  • March 5th Zaphods, Ottawa. ON Tickets on sale now
  • March 7th Hunters Ale House, Charlottetown, PEI
  • March 8th The Company House, Halifax, NS

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