If passion were the key ingredient for success, The Press Gang would be the biggest band on the planet. Founding member Colin McCulloch, however, is satisfied just to have survived the last eleven years, playing music he loves and building a fanbase that has grown up alongside the band. With five studio records and one live release under their belts, Colin and his mates have turned what was once an angry young punk band into a hardass rock unit with serious musical chops. Passion is the glue that holds it together.
In 2006, Colin dissolved his band Hail Damage to found The Press Gang. Like the feared press gangs of yesteryear that shanghaied drunks for duty aboard ocean-going freighters, the lead vocalist conscripted a long succession of members before finally assembling the perfect band of cutthroats. With earlier incarnations of the band coming and going, and finally settling on the solid crew of Chad Laing on lead guitar, bassist Lindsay Arnold, and drummer Derek Lindzon, Colin fused the accessibility of punk with Celtic accents and indecipherable lyrics to form a group informed by Mӧtorhead and early Maiden without being enslaved by them. Like the rowdy press gangs of yore, this crew make their own rules.
The Press Gang has been busy. Although the self-titled debut album, The Press Gang, didn’t arrive until 2009, Onward and Upward appeared in 2011, and by then the band was cooking with gasoline. In 2014, the Calgary-based group released the The Amazing Julie Strain EP, followed by Optimal Running Speed, in 2015. Late 2016 saw the release of Medusa 5, a finely crafted 10 song album that clocks in just under 30 minutes. With this release showing increased musicality and tighter riffs, Medusa 5 is the culmination of nearly 12 years of blood , sweat, and tears, and finally a sense of what should be for the band. A riff based Doom Ship ripping through the ocean without a care of the constraining laws of man and filthy mainlanders. This ship sails where she wants to.
Solid professionals who pride themselves on quick setups and teardowns, The Press Gang respect guests, promoters, and venue staff alike. Intensive set-specific rehearsals ensure that each song bleeds seamlessly to the next, and fans never have time to catch their breath. Largely unclassifiable, The Press Gang is a perfect fit with rock, punk, and metal bands of any stripe, and has played with a diverse variety of groups, including The Mahones, Nashville Pussy, Guttermouth, The Supersuckers, SNFU, and many others. 2016 saw the band tour across Canada to Sydney, Cape Breton, NS and back. Drunks leaving seaside pubs beware.
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