An Interview with The Balconies

The Balconies – Photo Credit: Courtney Lee Yip

Most recently, I was given the opportunity to interview an Ottawa based rock trio called the Balconies. Unsure of what to expect, I agreed, hoping to find answers to life’s more challenging question. And, although these questions were skipped, other intriguing questions were answered in their place. The Balconies will be opening for Big Sugar at the North 40 on November 9th in promotion of their latest EP, Kill Count. Drummer Liam Jaeger provided the answers below.

Q: How did you come up with the name The Balconies? What does it mean to you? What role have/do Balconies play in your lives? Do you prefer Maltese or Juliet balconies?

LJ: It is a memorable, simple name, and most importantly was not already taken by another band! We also believe a balcony is always a bonus in any apartment, hotel, et cetera!


Q: How is it being in a brother and sister duo, and at the same time, a trio? Does anyone feel left out at times? I’ve heard that siblings often fight when they are in a band together.

LJ: The best thing about it is the lack of personal barriers. When working together on creative projects, it is great having such close relationships between members. There are little quarrels here and there, but our sibling duo is very good at being mutually respectful.


Q: I’ve read that you all have an interest classical music. Will there be some experimentation with a fusion between classical and rock music in the future? Something along the lines of The Moody Blues’ Days of Future Passed?

LJ: We all grew up playing various kinds of ‘rock’ music (punk, alternative, classic rock, et cetera), but each of us have also always studied classical music. Each of us attended the University of Ottawa for classical music, so we all have similar musical backgrounds. After University, we decided it was the best time to focus on the band since it’s best to be touring while you’re still young! Occasionally we perform our songs in acoustic settings, in which case we play our songs using our ‘classical’ instruments. It presents the songs in a very different way and is a lot of fun for us.
Q: How do you feel about music nowadays and how do you see yourselves fitting in with today’s popular trends? You’ve recently covered Justin Bieber’s Baby with Hands and Teeth, would you like to discuss this?

LJ: As entertainers, we all feel it’s important to keep up with popular culture. We want our music to reach as many people as possible and feel it’s important to be aware of how our music ‘fits in’ to the grand scheme of things. We decided to cover Baby because we felt it would be fun to show the song’s classic roots and present it as a rock song.


Q: How do you go about writing music? How often do you write new songs and how many of these actually make it to records?

LJ: We all work together on songs. We each bring a different voice to the mix, and that’s what we feel is what makes us “us”. We like to think that all our songs will end up recorded and released eventually. When working on a record, it’s really a matter of what songs we decide fit together well as a group.


Q: What are you expecting the show at the North 40 in Brandon with Big Sugar to be like? Have you heard anything about Brandon before? If so, what? Dish out the dirt! Is it your first time here?

LJ: We’re looking forward to visiting Brandon and sharing our music with an entirely new audience. It’s an honour to be sharing the stage with Big Sugar, a band that is famous for their live shows. We hope people will enjoy our hi-energy live show too!


Q: What is your most memorable road trip experience or show?

LJ: It was pretty amazing to get to play two nights in a row at the Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver last week with Big Sugar. It’s such a gorgeous venue, and I don’t think many bands get to do that!


Q:Any final remarks?

Check out our video for our new single “Do it in the Dark”!!!


To learn more about The Balconies, visit their website: