TORONTO’S PUNK ROCK BAND OF THE MO­MENT

Midtown Post - - Big Ticket -

Ste­fan Bab­cock, an Earl Haig Sec­ondary School grad from Toronto, joined up with Zack Mykula, Nestor Chu­mak and Steve Slad­kowski to form the punk band Pup a year ago. Since the re­lease of their self­ti­tled de­but al­bum and a scorch­ing video for the song “Reser­voir,” the band has caught fire, tour­ing the globe and play­ing to sold-out crowds. They are back in Toronto for a show on June 3.

What’s next for you af­ter com­ing back home fol­low­ing your Euro­pean tour?

We have a six-week tour in North Amer­ica with Men­zingers, which in­cludes a Cana­dian date. It’s a big tour with a great band, and we get to stop in our home­town and play a show for our fans. It should be good.

You guys ba­si­cally blew up overnight fol­low­ing the “Reser­voir” video. What hap­pened?

The cur­rent band, Pup, has only been a band for less than a year I guess, maybe a year now ac­tu­ally. It’s hard to tell what hap­pened. At the end of day you don’t know if it’s good or not. I didn’t know what to ex­pect. You just put your record out, play a few shows in nearby cities, etc., and that would be that. We’d go about our nor­mal lives. But things have hap­pened re­ally fast, and we’re sur­prised and ex­cited by it. We’re now on the road con­stantly, see­ing places, play­ing with some of our favourite bands in the world. It’s been a mind-blow­ing ex­pe­ri­ence.

So how did the band come to­gether?

The other three guys grew up to­gether, same neigh­bour­hood, started play­ing mu­sic, de­vel­op­ing tastes with one an­other. They have a re­ally strong mu­si­cal bond and a friend­ship that’s re­ally great. I’m the new­comer. We met a cou­ple years ago. Mu­si­cally and per­son­ally we all just re­ally hit it off.

And what are your mu­si­cal in­flu­ences?

Built To Spill is my favourite band in the world since I was a re­ally young kid, and I never re­ally out­grew them. I love that kind of aes­thetic. They didn’t re­ally care too much about be­ing amaz­ing mu­si­cians, just play­ing parts per­fectly, writ­ing in­cred­i­ble songs, great hooks.… All of us love bands like the Bronx, Queens of the Stone Age. Pup plays the Opera House on June 3 with the Men­zingers and Le­muria, www.pupthe­band.band­camp.com.

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