Premiere: Montreal’s Pallice returns with Aesthetic

Montreal pop outfit Pallice are set to release their debut EP Aesthetic this spring via So Sorry Records. Until then, you can listen to the first single — also titled “Aesthetic” — right here on this Mixtape premiere.  Multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Morgan O’Leary talks about Pallice’s new music and the band’s upcoming tour through the Maritimes and Eastern Canada.

It’s been a little while since Pallice released the first single Garden (we can go out) in July, 2016. What have you been working on since then?

Everyone in Pallice is involved with several projects, so while writing, practicing, and playing shows for the last year and a bit, we were also dispersed throughout Montreal and Ottawa doing the same with other bands. Pony Girl, mal/aimé, Raveen, Scattered Clouds, Napster Vertigo to name a few. We started recording the Aesthetic EP in September.

Tell us a little bit about the song “Aesthetic”, how did it come to be?

I was pursuing a master’s degree in music when I first started writing pop music—it was kind of the result of feeling like my musical output had to change to match who I was and how I was presenting myself as an artist.  “Aesthetic” is about trying to find out what it meant for me to be artistic, and all of the challenges that come with redefining yourself in a sense.

It’s about taking your time to really know what and how you want to create, and being gentle with yourself. But also about being determined to find it.

And this song is the first single from the new EP. How was recording with Andrew Woods (Basia Bulat, Napster Vertigo)?

Working with Andrew was a great experience. He was such a good match for us, and really provided a platform to realize our ideas and intentions. Not only that, but he’s someone who you know you can trust with your music—he doesn’t step on toes, but pushes you to take chances and not be held back by boundaries or expectations from the “outside world”. His enthusiasm kept us feeling consistently driven. We love Andrew!

What sort of influences and circumstances shaped the music on the EP?

A big part of this album is about feeling nostalgic for your youth, but still being young. It’s a bit of a cliché, but it’s really about growing up, loving the people in your life, parties, and dogs. Things that we know about, really. Or things we’re experiencing.

When Pallice began I felt a really deep desire to write pop music because I’ve always loved pop so much. I think that desire got to the point where —  since I hadn’t done this before, really — it needed to be concise and simple in its delivery, but influenced by my musical background as well as everyone else’s musical background in the band. It felt so special to have that sort of simplicity get shaken up in the musical elements of these songs.

What can the audience expect for your shows through the Maritimes? 

We’re very excited to play in the Maritimes again, and I think that audiences can expect a really fun set that’s a bit daring at times. Mostly fun, a bit weird, but overall I think because the Maritimes are so special to us, we’ll bring that East Coast energy to the live performance.

Who’s playing in your band with you?

Pallice will be joined by members of mal/aimé and Pony Girl (Julien Dussault, Jeff Kingsbury, and Yolande Laroche) along with Wesley MacNeil and myself.

Tour dates:

April 19 – Halifax, NS @ Seahorse Tavern
April 20 – Charlottetown, PE @ Sportsmans’ Club, Charlottetown
April 21 – Fredericton, NB @ Flourish Festival
April 27 – Trois-Rivières, PQ @ Café-Bar Le Zénob
April 28 – Montreal, PQ @  La Vitrola
April 29 –  Ottawa, ON @ Pressed

Press photo by Dan Esteban