By: Sheena Lyonnais
July 29, 2007
“The first set was kind of interesting because 1:30 is kind of early for me, I usually wake up at 1:30 in the afternoon,” says Brent Jackson, the tall, scruffy-haired singer/guitarist of Brampton’s the Junction. He just finished playing his second set at Wakestock on Toronto Island and can’t help but point out how many things seem interesting these days about his band: the early starting times, playing large festivals and more importantly, the progress of their recently released self-titled album.
“We just did it barebones, as quick as we could, as true to our live show as possible,” he said. The album is in clear contrast with their first EP, which was polished and well received, but not an accurate representation of their live performance. So for the new album they switched it up, paid attention to the mathematics of performing and recording and attempted to incorporate raw but professional sounds into the album so that it reflected their true style.
“I don’t really like hearing a band writing the same record over and over. We were kind of a different band at the time the other record came out. At that time we were a four piece, whereas we’re a three piece now. I think people really connected to that first EP and I think, you know, we’re just a band that always wants to grow and do what we love doing and hopefully people will stick it through with us,” Jackson said.
The Junction has been around the Brampton scene for several years now, but breaking into Toronto has proven more difficult. They’ve been playing numerous shows and making a name for themselves, but the current success is not on par with their ambitions.
“I feel Toronto for us is a place we’re still to tap. As much as our name may be out there, we haven’t achieved what we want to achieve and it’s going to be hard work,” Jackson said.
And what does the Junction want to achieve? They pretty much want to change the world through music. It’s an old fashioned sentiment that is frequently disregarded as cliché, but Jackson is not discouraged. He wants the Junction’s music to inspire people one city at a time.
“I feel music to me is the best language that was ever given to humanity. When I write lyrics I never write about myself, I write reflecting ideas and situations that personally happen to me in ways that hopefully can inspire someone else,” he said.
Perhaps this notion is actually what makes the Junction unique. It’s a working class, Beatles-esque mindset made for the people.
But then one day in a very SLC Punk fashion, a friend played Jackson Moneen’s EP and Jackson’s eyes were opened. He couldn’t believe they were from his hometown, more specifically his high school, and he went out and bought their EP that day.
"I watched them so many times in Brampton and it really has nothing to do with where they’re from or the fact that we share the same hometown, it’s that they’re flat-out an amazing band and it’s an honour and a privilege to play shows with them and even see them and know they come from our hometown,” he said.
Both Moneen and the Junction played Wakestock and they will be playing together again this weekend in Grand Bend for the Cutting Edge Festival, something Jackson is stoked about.
“Whoever organized it, it’s amazing. This seems to be like all of our friends’ bands playing. We all know each other, we’ve all played together at other shows and it’s a festival, but you get to get excited by saying “we’re going to get to just catch up with our friends, have some drinks, watch their shows and it will be great,”.
The Junction will be playing in Toronto one last time at the Ex on August 26 before heading overseas to Japan.
“I imagine in the new year we’ll get cracking on another record because we really want to have the material to be able to tour. That’s all we really want to do,” Jackson said. It is evident how important an aspect music is to the philosophical singer.
“I know if there was no music in my life, I don’t even know how I could live or even be happy. It’s so amazing.”