The Rural Alberta Advantage not only releases catchy songs, but can also put on one hell of a show

The Rural Alberta Advantage may be another Canadian Indie Band, but they are one worth keeping an eye on. Currently on tour in Europe and the United Kingdom in support of their fourth album titled The Wild, they bring an interesting take on what it means to be an Indie band. Crafting tunes full of passion, their records are an emotional ride filled with tears, joy, and a lot of fun, even though they sometimes contain grim lyrical content. Boasting catchy song structures that lend themselves nicely to massive chorus sing-alongs, this is the perfect recipe for fans to connect with the band in a live setting. Nils Edenloff, Robin Hatch, and Paul Banwatt have a natural chemistry, so it is not hard to see how they craft music together so well. Robin Hatch recently joined the band in 2016 after Amy Cole announced her departure. Nils handles the main vocals and the rocking and melodic guitar playing. Robin is a whirlwind of talent handling the bass, keyboards, and backup vocal duties. Paul is a phenomenal drummer. He brings this raw punk energy that, when paired with Nils emotional and powerful vocals and Robin’s beautiful keyboard melodies and bass lines, it creates this punk-folk enigma that compiles the best elements of those worlds into an entirely enjoyable and intense joyride. Their current album, The Wild, is worth every bit of its runtime.

Back in November, they were joined by Yukon Blonde for a fantastic show at the Kelowna Community Theatre. Local favourites Yukon Blonde opened up the show with a substantial turnout, which has become somewhat uncommon in modern live music consumption. The majority of live performances that I’ve attended have a pretty sad attendance during the opening acts, so this was good to see. Their sound was fantastic and they played really well. When the Rural Alberta Advantage took the stage, the crowd was ecstatic. Everyone was on their feet and sang along to almost every song that they played. Their live sound added so many layers to the band it was almost like experiencing something completely brand new. The production on their albums is not weak by any means, but there is something that just is not captured as well that you have to experience in person. The emotion from lead vocalist and guitar player is amplified 100 times, and you almost get a Gord Downie vibe from him. Paul’s drumming, as previously mentioned, was extraordinary, and had such a larger than life sound that filled the entire theatre. It’s hard to put into words just how amazingly each member complimented one other, so you will just have to catch them the next time they are in town. Canada has become overrun with Indie bands in the last few years, but this is one of those rare groups that stand above the crowd. If the albums haven’t made you a fan yet, take a chance on the live experience and you will not be let down.