When listening to The City Harmonic, you instinctively turn up the volume and join the chorus as the music dynamically bounces from sparse intimacy to soaring celebration and back again. It's a musical metaphor for the band that plays it with their feet in the dirt and their eyes toward the heavens.' It isn't long before you find yourself singing along and not because you ought to, but because you want to. Like a spontaneous outbreak of Hey Jude around the campfire, you want in on the moment. And getting people in on the act hearts pounding and feet moving is at the core of what The City Harmonic is about.
The Canadian band's sound is a nostalgic Brit-pop meets campfire sing-along mix that features raucous, gang vocals along with agile, soaring anthems crafted to include the listener.' Consisting of front man Elias Dummer, bassist Eric Fusilier, guitarist Aaron Powell and drummer Josh Vanderlaan, The City Harmonic isn't as interested in finding fans as they are looking for participants in the journey. Both art and worship are participatory acts not consumptive acts, says Elias. What is meaningful for people is the experience, that creative moment when art is shared.
Even the band's name is partly derived from the sense that in communal worship we catch a fleeting glimpse of the world that we pine for. Elias explains: C.S. Lewis said this thing that's always stuck with us: "If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.'' It's like there's this hopeful nostalgia within us all for the way things ought to be. It's great when coming together feels like that " like it's the unveiling of something bigger and better than ourselves. If we can somehow spark in people a dream, something they just can't shake, then that will inspire them to sing like every word matters, to live like every day matters, and having tasted heaven they'll get on with helping this world feel more like home.
With a sound influenced by mainstream acts like Coldplay, Keane, Arcade Fire, and The Beatles, The City Harmonic seek to create music they enjoy themselves. "I guess we didn't worry too much about whether these songs were 'singable' or not," admits Elias. "People don't sing along to old hymns because they're 'singable,' the songs move them and mean a lot to them. They weren't simple in the way that people sometimes suggest worship songs should be, but people connected with them anyway. We can't make worship music formulaic, we have to move and inspire people. I hope we can write songs that are creative and honest. The kind of songs that capture people's hearts and minds - then I believe their voices will follow. I pray people can connect with them and make them their own. Hopefully they aren't worship songs simply because we say so, but because they come from honest, worshipful lives and inspire the same in others."
Listen to The City Harmonic here
|Introducing The City Harmonic EP||2010||Kingsway Music|
|I Have a Dream (It Feels Like Home)||2011||Kingsway Music|