Inspired by love and mourning, the trials of good people feeling isolated and life in city chaos, Culture Reject grew from myriad Toronto home recording sessions with O’Connell at the console accompanied by several guitars, a loop pedal, a glockenspiel, and whatever else produced a sound when it was struck. Guests include Jim Guthrie (drums, vocals), Karri North (background vocals), percussion virtuoso Dave Clark and a horn section consisting of Michael Barclay, Bradley Fauteux, and Venezuelan/Canadian saxophone star, Bernardo Padron. Most of the songs were then sent off for further mixing at London, Ontario ’s House Of Miracles by the sure ears of Andy Magoffin (Constantines, Great Lake Swimmers).
On stage, as witnessed at this year’s CMJ Music Marathon in New York City, Culture Reject recreates the songs with an impressive and unique use of a loop pedal and an intricate finger picking style that creates a bed of syncopation and harmony under O’Connell’s powerfully dynamic vocal range. He is sometimes backed up by vocalist Karri North or a thick wall of saxophone and trumpets.
Claude Munson is a Canadian singer songwriter from Ottawa, ON who performs his own brand of independent and alternative folk-rock music. Claude sports a near-falsetto voice and performs his songs on acoustic and electric hollow body guitar. His lyrics tell the loose story of a young man’s turbulent journey of self-discovery through self questioning in which he searches to find peace within himself and with the world around him. In 2012, Munson and his band released their self-titled debut “Claude Munson & The Storm Outside” which mixes contemporary folk rock with an alternative ambient edge and uses the metaphor of a being caught in a storm to represent the songwriter’s dilemma.