Metric spark

While he keeps busy as a bassist for indie rock outfit Metric, Josh Winstead keeps even busier with his side-project with Metric drummer Joules Scott-Key, Bang Lime. That band, a little heavier, a little grimier, just finished a tour in support of their new album Best Friends in Love, and Metric are already knee-deep in a tour that will take them through St. John’s and around through the US.

Elling Lien caught up with Josh by phone.

Where are you now?

I’m in Capitol Music in Toronto.

What are you doing there?

I’ve got a day off and I’ve got a friend that works here and I’ve come to say hello and play some guitars and see what’s going on and see if there’s anything I needed real bad. I mean real bad. [laugh]

Seen anything?

There are a couple of acoustics I’m looking at, because we’re thinking about getting some for the tour bus, to hang out and write music in the back lounge.

You’re jumping right into this tour from another one with your side-project Bang Lime…

Yeah, [Metric drummer] Jules and I have already been on tour for a month.

How did that go?

It was really good. I think when we get up there, a lot of people don’t quite know what to expect because we’re in Metric and we’re the rhythm section… They don’t know if it will be any good or different, or whatever.

People that come, a lot of them say “I was totally prepared to hate it-I didn’t know you could sing or play guitar but I really love it-it’s fucking great.”

It’s kind of funny to hear that response, but I expect it. It’s really hard to think of what a rhythm section is going to do. Nobody really knows I am more of a guitar player and singer than I am a bass player.

Well, the drums and bass… you guys are the energy.

Sometimes, yeah. I like to think of it as the spark plug for the motor. That Metric motor was built and ready to run and just needed a little electricity like a spark plug and a gas.
That’s what we kind of were for that band.

With the reaction to Bang Lime, you know people must be honest when they said “I was totally prepared for it to suck.”

Yeah, it’s really funny to hear.

Is it tricky maintaining your energy on stage with two people?

No, not at all.
I think that’s what everyone else is really surprised by: how dynamic we are for just two people up on stage. We both knew it was going to be all right, since we’ve played together for so long we know each other’s weaknesses and strengths and know how to play off each other. It was really good. It’s going to be fun to keep doing that whenever we have breaks.

You’re really having to squeeze them in, because it seems like you’ve got quite a tour schedule going on with Metric.

Yeah. We came to Toronto had two days of practice and came right back on a tour again.
And you’re coming here on the 16th to St. John’s NL. …How do you guys deal with touring for the next little while?

Luckily for us it’s gotten easier and easier, because we’ve worked really hard touring for two-and-a-half, , almost three years, stuffed in a little van and trailer, so now to be able to afford a crew and a tour bus. It really helps out a lot. It changes the way you tour. So we actually have a little bit of time off and can enjoy ourselves but it’s still a really hard job.

Metric will play Club One on Sept. 16. Tickets $30.