The Tourist Company has outright rejected the idea of being confined to the limits of one genre or sound. Chalk it up to living in Vancouver that this eclectic group feel far from settled. The group has toured multiple times across Canada, sharing the stage with several of Canada’s elite rock and alternative groups including We Are The City, Dear Rouge, and Fast Romantics, and garnered extensive radio airplay. “We truly feel as though we have had a wild first chapter as a band and are ready for the next musical mission”, said lead singer and songwriter Taylor Swindells.
Their next offering to the world? Apollo, the group’s long awaited debut LP.
In itself, the word Apollo can conjure up many images, the most obvious being the US space missions of the 1960’s and 70’s, which ultimately put man on the moon. In Greek and Roman mythology, Apollo was known as the god of music and poetry as well as one of healing and truth. The themes of idealism, skepticism, venturing into the unknown, and a longing for home, all bleed into The Tourist Company’s new music.
Opening the record is the achingly beautiful string and harp intro of “1957” leading into “Sputnik”, where The Tourist Company waste no time in making a musical impression by adding everything from bright piano plunks to tambourines, bass synths and trumpets, yet never once sounding lost in their musical landscape. The tune carries an urgency and directness, much like a spacecraft tearing away from Earth’s gravity towards a singular goal. This group isn’t shying away from the dramatic either, as evidenced by “Astronaut”, which features a heavy drop into pulsing bass and distorted Rhodes halfway through the track. As experimental as these approaches may be, elements of pop can be found scattered throughout, in songs such as “Sidelines” and title track “Apollo”. Those who are privy to the US space missions will know that the album closing song title is pulled from the last words spoken in the televised Apollo 8 mission broadcast.
This group has built their sound and identity around the concept that outer space is more than a vast, dark space. To the band, "outer space encompasses our ideas and questions about humanity, and one’s own journey and struggles."
Photo by Christopher-Paul