Well, I must say it's been quite the journey seeing all of our photo archives up on Flickr. To think that Paint as we know it is the product of so much refinement over years of, at best, sporadic communion and the slow process of trimming and narrowing the vision... it feels like the 2009 lineup here in Toronto has absolutely no connection whatsoever to the first one of 2001 in Vancouver. I know the one thing that's probably changed the most is me from the humble beginnings of Paint as a folk-based political entity when I was 18, to the introduction (cheered along by Matt Laforest) of vintage tube amps, distortion pedals, screaming electric guitars, and a general "wall of sound" more true to my inner noise... Maybe it's not such a bafflement after all when I take the journey Paint has gone through in tandem with my own personal journey into adulthood: the band in its various incarnations represents different stages in my young life, like choosing awful outfits and hairstyles; attempting to tease out existential questions like, "What's it's all about?"; seeing the inside of some of North America's harshest and most violent prisons and urban settings as a social activist; and, ultimately, stumbling through most of it with the assistance (or crutch) of whatever easy cure I could get my hands on -- and now through the lens of clear eyes and commitment to my wife and what is, in the inner circle, referred to as "Paint Toronto."
Can You Hear Me? is a loud record, yes, but so basic in its melody and structure. I doubt there are more than 6 chords on the entire album. As much as I wish this sound and vision had been discovered right off the bat, I hardly doubt I would appreciate it as much, or feel that I earned it, had I not gone to hell and back to see it become what it is now... Enjoy the photos!
All my relations,