The last few years have been surprisingly good for Kasador.
The Kingston, Ont.- based trio of Cameron Wyatt (vocals, guitar) Boris Baker (bass) and Stephen Abudofuor (drums, backing vocals) spent the early days of the pandemic writing. And writing. And then they wrote a little more, in the neighbourhood of 100 songs, give or take.
When restrictions started to lift, they teamed up with friend and fellow Kingston musician Brett Emmons of The Glorious Sons to try something new.
The result of their first writing session is “Youth,” the first single off their soon-to-be released new EP, of the same name. “Youth” is out today on all streaming services; look for the EP in the very early days of spring (aka toward the end of March) with another single in a few weeks.
“Youth” is all the things fans might expect from the Kasador they’ve known for the better part of a decade: It’s upbeat, lively, catchy and optimistic, danceable without dumbing itself down for mass appeal as some artists might want to do.
For Wyatt and Baker, it’s also an introduction to the new Kasador: Longtime frontman Will Hunter departed the band just as the pandemic settled in — he’s still a great friend and supporter of the band, popping up at shows last winter and in frequent contact with Wyatt and Baker — and they’ve done a little work with another Kingston-based musician, Jonas Lewis-Anthony, frontman of The Wilderness, who joins Kasador for shows when the musical stars align.
“We’re the same people,” Wyatt says. “I think a lot of why people like bands is they like the people in the band, what they stand for, who they are. We try to be honest with the music we put out, in the lyrics and how it’s presented. There’s a lot of consistency there — there’s a surface-level change but it’s still the same authentic type of music that hopefully speaks to how you feel and what you want to get out of life.”
“Youth” dives into that same kind of duality: the constant forward march of time that forces people to look to the future constantly while also feeling the pangs of nostalgia and wanting to hold onto moments.
“It’s two sides to a coin,” Baker says. “Part of it is living in the moment and not worrying about, I’m 28, I have to have this, this and this because I have to grow up. It’s not always trying to get to the next thing and be so focused that you can’t enjoy where you are now. But the flip side is that you don’t always look toward the future or toward the past. You can stay youthful without having to hang on to the past.”
Kasador, in all its iterations, has produced a solid set of poppy songs with really catchy lines, sometimes mixed in with complexities the casual listener might miss. In “Youth,” the gems are early and often and they don’t miss:
“I lost it in the fog and then the fog’s gone,” Wyatt sings in the first verse. Baker points out this line as a favorite and Wyatt admits he didn’t love it at first but it’s grown on him as they’ve prepared to release the single.
“I kept thinking about it,” Wyatt says. “When you lose something in the fog, then the fog goes away, the thing you saw is gone. When the fog clears, the issue you had, maybe it was never there in the first place.”
Later he sings “I can’t slow down or stop/I’m slipping through the cracks that drain away/I can’t slow down at all/I’m wasting away.”
This is a band that’s been together, Baker and Wyatt, for nearly 10 years. Drummer Abudofuor joined up during the production of their last full album, Brood & Bloom, released in late 2019, just before the world changed. To say they’ve grown as musicians, that they’ve made good use of their time and creativity and talents, is an understatement. But this is still a very young band, energetic and so excited to get out on the road and bring these songs and the handful of others they’ve written in the past few months, back to stages and their fans.
“I’m just excited to feel like a band again. I haven’t in a couple years,” Wyatt said. “I’m excited to play and work toward something. Now that I’m singing, I like to challenge myself and singing has been very challenging. I just love doing it and I’m excited to do it again.”
Adds Baker, “I’m excited for people to get to know Cam. I feel this is the first time we’ve released music that Cam’s really opened up to this degree. He’s a very good lyricist and I think people are going to be blown away.”
The timeline for Kasador includes another single release, followed by the EP in late March. They’re dreaming about a tour, maybe an opening slot for another band whose fans, like their own, really love bands and music and going out to shows, open-minded and out for a good time, ready to have fun and dance and sing along. And then, maybe, a series of smaller club shows.
Everything’s open. Everything’s possible. There’s no time to waste — they want to take full advantage of their youth.