The Bills are back? Yes, please

New album Yes Please brings deeper groove and danceability

Richard Moody, Chris Frye, Adrian Dolan and Marc Atkinson are The Bills. Catch them live Thurs., Sept. 6 at the Alix Goolden Hall.

Richard Moody, Chris Frye, Adrian Dolan and Marc Atkinson are The Bills. Catch them live Thurs., Sept. 6 at the Alix Goolden Hall.

What did fans of The Bills say when they heard the two-time Juno nominees were making a new album? “Yes, please.”

After eight years of waiting, fans of the freewheeling roots phenoms are rejoicing because the waiting has come to an end. The Bills new album, Yes Please, was released Sept. 4, and Marc Atkinson, Adrian Dolan, Richard Moody and Chris Frye are hitting the open road to bring their new music to eager ears.

“We went for quality over quantity starting in about 2008, where we just honed it down to key festivals, mostly in the U.S. and Europe and spending the rest of our time with other projects, so everyone is excited to bring it back together and focus our energy back on The Bills,” says Frye. “We’re a very busy group of people and somehow the stars aligned this year, and it all came together and I think it’s the best music we’ve ever made. It’s the right time to do this again because the songwriting, the playing and the excitement is at the highest level it’s ever been.”

There is a very high level of collaboration between the four core members, with each sharing the songwriting duties, either on their own or as a team.

“We each bring our best ideas to the band, then it goes through The Bills filter, and out comes these songs,” says Frye. “Most are collaborative, so it’s a very challenging process, but when it works, it brings out something that I think is greater than the sum of its parts.”

The Bills is a five-piece band with four core members and a rotating bass player. Glen Manders, who played bass in the band for almost a decade has since left for medical school. Scott White (also known as Gramps), moved to Europe and plays with the band when they’re touring across the pond. Locals Joey Smith, Oliver Swain and Joby Baker fill in during recording and at gigs, depending on where it is and who’s available (Smith will be playing the Victoria show).

And Frye says the songwriting on this record is at a higher level than ever before, with a much deeper groove and more percussion that adds a level of danceability to what they do.

“There’s a quality control thing in The Bills. We really shoot for what we think is great song-craft, great lyrics, really hot licks, great arrangements, so you come in a bit daunted by that standard we keep, but it’s great to have that standard because we don’t let anything slip through,” says Frye.

“The key to the final product, I think, is Joby Baker. Not in terms of the composition, but in terms of realizing the potential of the compositions.”

Baker produced, recorded, mixed and mastered the album at his Saanich studio, and he also played upright bass and percussion on many of the tracks.

“You go through all that hard work, and then you go see Joby,” says Frye. “He’s magic in the studio and helps it all come together. He’s like the sixth member of the band for sure.”

Baker will be playing percussion at the Victoria show and Frye says to keep your eyes open for other special guests who may make an appearance on stage. M

 

The Bills

Thurs., Sept. 6

Alix Goolden Hall

7:30pm

Tickets $20 advance or $24 at the door

available at rmts.bc.ca

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Tomo Vranjes, a Greater Victoria musician and longtime fan of late rock guitar icon Eddie Van Halen, joins artist Paul Archer behind the latter’s Fort Street gallery. Archer, whose airbrushed paintings of rock greats have made him many connections in recent years, painted a likeness of Van Halen following the guitarist’s death last month from cancer. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)
Victoria artist’s king-sized tribute to Eddie Van Halen draws on personal connection

Paul Archer had an up close and personal day with the legendary guitarist in 1980

A sample of some of Lou-ann Neel’s jewelry.
Lou-ann Neel wins the Fulmer Award in First Nations Art

Originally from Alert Bay, Neel’s family is steeped in renowned Kwakwaka’wakw artists

I-Hos Gallery manager Ramona Johnson shows some of the paddles available at the retail outlet. Photo by Terry Farrell
I-Hos Gallery celebrates 25 years of promoting First Nation artwork

K’ómoks First Nation-based outlet has art from all over the country

Bard to Broadway Theatre Society may stage shows outdoors next summer. (PQB News photo file)
Qualicum Beach’s Bard to Broadway group may stage shows outdoors

Theatre society plans smaller productions due to ongoing pandemic

A new short film festival called MORVENFEST is encouraging B.C. secondary students to step into the world of film during their Christmas break. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
New film festival gives Victoria students exciting opportunity

MORVENFEST is open to all B.C. secondary students over Christmas break

Port Alberni author Diane Dobson has put together a collection of childhood memories, with proceeds going towards the Ty Watson House. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Port Alberni writer looks through the eyes of a child

Book raises funds for the Alberni Valley Hospice Society

The Old School House Arts Centre in Qualicum Beach has temporarily closed its doors to the public as of Nov.18. (Mandy Moraes photo)
COVID-19: The Old Schoolhouse Arts Centre in Qualicum Beach closes until 2021

TOSH takes proactive approach to ‘protect the well-being of the community’

Edie Daponte and Joey Smith share the stage Saturday at the Sid Williams Theatre. The show is also being livestreamed. Photo supplied
Edie Daponte brings show up-Island

Second World War tribute live and livestreamed in Courtenay and Campbell River

Most Read