The words “scenic route to Alaska” likely inspires images of never-ending highways and mountain vistas, not Canadian indie music. However, the band Scenic Route to Alaska is hoping to change that. The Edmonton-based trio is embarking on their biggest tour yet, and Fernie is the first stop on the Canadian leg.
According to band member, Trevor Mann, it is hard to describe the genre of music they play.
“Lately people have been putting it in a new genre of prairie indie or prairie folk. I feel like in this day and age, genres are hard to put yourself in because everyone is kind of doing a big mix of things,” he told The Free Press. “I would say our sound is the product of the three of us playing music together and growing up together and listening to the same music. I think it is hard for us to describe because it feels very organic and natural, but it is just the accumulation of a lot of time.”
Mann, along with his band mates Shea Connor and Murray Wood, has been playing music since he was a child. The three grew up together and have known each other for nearly two decades, and formed this band roughly five years ago.
“It is not new anymore, but I feel like we are still very inspired and we have a lot of distance to cover that we haven’t covered yet. Things are definitely still moving forward and still moving up so it seems like we must be doing something right,” said Mann.
On Sept. 23, the band released its sixth record, and third full-length studio album. Titled Long Walk Home, Mann hopes to tour as much as possible in support of the new record.
“I want to play over 100 shows this year, if possible, and push this new record as much as possible, because I feel like we have come to a cool crossroads in our lives, where we are all fully committed to doing this,” he said. “We want to make this the big focus.” According to Mann, all three members play a part in writing the music, although he pens most of the lyrics. Their name was inspired by a highway sign in between Hinton and Jasper, Alta.
“We used to drive by it all the time when we were kids. We just thought it would be a picturesque and a fairly fitting name for an indie band. It inspires and invokes a lot of imagery,” he said.
The last time Scenic Route to Alaska played in Fernie was for the 2015 Griz Days festival and they are excited to return. Mann says they have had some memorable shows and experiences in Fernie, including an emergency trip to the dentist and car troubles.
“We are going to erase all of those experiences and we are going to start fresh. We love Fernie, I love having an excuse to go through there,” he said. “It is so beautiful.”
Scenic Route to Alaska will be playing at The Northern Bar and Stage on Sept. 30.