Friday Night Fires returns to Grotto

Kamloops-born band returns home for a night of rock

Sunday’s show marks the first time Friday Night Fires has played in Kamloops since this spring. (Justin Moore/The Omega)

Sunday, September 10 was a night of rock and roll and the homecoming show of Kamloops-born band Friday Night Fires. Friday Night Fires rattled the worn floors of the Blue Grotto with a set list full of heavy guitar riffs and mesmerizing drum beats.

The band started with four guys who just wanted to make music together.

“People want to hang out and make music because it makes you feel good,” said bassist Shayne Arthurs.

The band consists of four members; Jonathan Chow, lead vocalist and guitar, Devan Burke, guitar, Shayne Arthurs, bass and Adam Buchanan, drums. All four met during open mic nights hosted weekly at the Commodore in downtown Kamloops.

Through these open mic nights, the band started jamming together more frequently until January 2017 when they recorded their first song, Whiskey, thus marking the official birth of Friday Night Fires.

“It was never a goal. I was never searching for those craigslist ads looking to start a band. This just happened quite beautifully,” said Buchanan.

When asked what their sound is, there can’t just be one solid answer. Amidst the obvious rock and roll elements that hold strong in every song, the band considers their sound to be ever changing.

“The cool thing about the ‘organicness’ of how we came about is that we all had different musical interests, nothing was forced when we all started writing songs,” said Buchanan. “They all had their own little flavour.”

Friday Night Fires has begun to label themselves as Blue Collar Retro. Stating that their small town upbringings and values shaped a lot of the way they present their music. Blue Collar Retro can be easily thought of as modern rock, but often without the heavy production that can be found in radio hits.

“I struggle with that question because people will ask what kind of music is it and I’ll say ‘I don’t know’,” Chow admitted when it came to their sound.

“I think we’re still trying to figure out what our sound is. It’s been cool because we have a collection of songs now that are quite diverse and we really like that,” Buchanan added.

Since their quick and successful beginnings in Kamloops, Friday Night Fires launched their musical career into the big city with a move to Vancouver.

“We went in so blind. When we moved to Vancouver, we didn’t know anyone in the scene. We had to learn a lot really fast,” said Buchanan. “I think we spent the first half of our time there going to shows and trying to wrap our head around what was happening.”

“It’s slowly picking up. It was definitely a whirlwind,” said Chow.

Friday Night Fires credits much of their success to the immense support they’ve had from friends, family and the musical community around them; naming Shred Kelly as providing a wealth of advice.

This isn’t the last you’ll be hearing of Friday Night Fires. With one EP released, the band is looking to release more music in the near future, as well as a possible B.C. and Alberta tour to further explore Western Canada.