Interview: Toronto's The Holy Gasp


Created by Benjamin Hackman, The Holy Gasp has recently blessed the ears of the city with their two-track-mini-release that is available for download on their bandcamp. If you haven't seen this band live, please add it to your "Summer 2014 Bucket List". You will not regret it.

Why should Toronto become a fan of The Holy Gasp

Holy Gasp Promo Shot - Nika Rae ZelinaPhotography: Nika Rae Zelina

"We are like a band of beatnik jazz junkies singing 'Surfing Bird' with a bad case of the shits. I don't think Toronto should listen to The Holy Gasp. I think we are renegotiating the instrumentation that is typical of a pop or rock group. Sebastian plays the only electric instrument in the band. We are calling upon a lot of African rhythms and seeing how they fit into contemporary rock. We take a lot of my poems and we make them a bit more character/narrative driven and a bit more influential through our performance."

That awkward moment you have individuals in the band that are in other bands

Live at the Trinity Lounge, Sarnia - Darin WhitePhotography: Darin White

"That is a provocative question. A band is a lot like a romantic relationship, the breakups are as messy, the intimacy is as crucial, and the level of communication needs to always be on. We talk about it all the time and are very transparent. Toronto’s music community is very polyamorous. Everyone is jamming with everybody."

'Bed Bugs' as the single

Live at the Coffin Factory, Toronto - Jenny Bundock
Photography: Jenny Bundock

"At the beginning of the year, I was thinking about what I wanted to put out on the LP, so I looked at the songs that I would like to use that were brand new songs. Bed bugs seemed most accessible and seemed to be the funniest. There was the interplay between the grossness and anger. I was not aware as to how topical it was."

Rehearsal - Nika Rae ZelinaPhotography: Nika Rae Zelina

"People who have had bed bugs really appreciate the song; the character that I took on was an angry man that is easy to laugh at.  It is really psychologically frustrating and emotionally exhausting having bed bugs. But there is a long term game plan that I am concealing from you and it may become more apparent by the end of the year as to why we are releasing the songs that we are."

Watch The Holy Gasp live as they perform opening night of the Canadian Music Week at the Silver Dollar on May 6th @ 9 p.m.


For more information on The Holy Gasp, visit here.