Canadian award-winning string ensemble The Fretless are bringing their innovative sound to the Tractorgrease Cafe on April 14, nearing the end of a string of B.C. shows.
Featuring Karrnnel Sawitysky and Trent Freeman on fiddles, and Eric Wright on cello, this unique band is taking string music to fascinating places as it transforms fiddle tunes and folk melodies into intricate, beautiful, high-energy arrangements.
With their debut album Waterbound (2012), which features their fresh styles, compositions, as well as collaborations with singers Ruth Moody and Norah Rendell, the quartet (with former member Ivonne Hernandez) grabbed the attention of critics and fans across many genres.
That initial release fuelled a busy summer of Canadian festivals, a tour across Germany, global sales and radio play, and critical acclaim. In 2012, The Fretless received the Western Canadian Music Award (WCMA) for Instrumental Recording of the Year as well as the Canadian Folk Music Awards (CFMA) for Ensemble of the Year and Instrumental Group of the Year.
With fiddles and cello in hand, the group aims to expand the rhythmic, harmonic and structured arrangement style of the many folk genres they play using only string instruments.
The Fretless released their “bold leap forward” sophomore self-titled album in 2014, and have been touring extensively across Canada, The United States and Europe promoting it ever since.
Steadily building on their already stellar reputation, they once again earned the WCMA for Instrumental Recording of the Year and the CFMA for Ensemble of the Year in 2014.
When they finish up their B.C. tour, they’ll take a short break to wrap up the mixing and artwork for their forthcoming 2016 release Bird’s Nest.
“We’re involving a lot more original music on this album, while still including some of those traditional Irish and old-time American tunes,” Wright explained.
“It still sounds like Fretless, but we’re pushing it a bit further.”
The Fretless puts on an innovative “kitchen fiddle jam” that must be heard. They harbour all the energy of fiddle tunes, while shattering expectations in writing, creativity and performance.
The Fretless will premiere all new music at The Tractorgrease Cafe (48710 Chilliwack Lake Rd) on April 14 at 7 p.m., with special guest Ben Plotnick.
Tickets are $12 available by phone at 604-858-3814 or at the door.