#CMPremiere - The Sun Harmonic's "To The Blue"

We're thrilled to be the first to share the latest song from Toronto-based folk-rock act The Sun Harmonic. Called "To The Blue," the song is taken from the band's forthcoming album, Coast to Coast.

The Sun Harmonic is a Canadian folk-rock outfit led by small town songwriter Kaleb Hikele, an adventurous composer and prolific recording artist based in Toronto's east end. Kaleb has finished his truly Canadian folk album, Coast to Coast, recorded cross-country over the last five years. The first single, tracked in Ottawa and Montreal, is called "To The Blue."

Befitting the name of the album, it was recorded across Canada, from Vancouver to Halifax; as you listen to the LP, you travel from Vancouver Island to Toronto, Ottawa to Montreal, then Halifax and back home to a live recording captured from the wooden stage of Massey Hall in Toronto. Coast to Coast will finally be released on vinyl, CD, and streaming services in Fall 2021.

To purchase "To The Blue" on Bandcamp, go HERE.

The fifth track on the album, "To The Blue" was tracked on the road in Ottawa and Montreal while Kaleb was on a round trip to Halifax for a recording spree in 2018. The first stop was Little Bullhorn, a home studio in Ottawa situated in a backyard shed that's packed full of instruments and analog recording gear. Kaleb brought out a trunk of hand percussions and recorded a layered and rhythmic foundation for the song first, with knee slaps, shakers, and quite a few tambourines. Next he set out to record a handful of acoustic guitar layers before jumping over to improvise on the in-house grand piano and keyboard synthesizers. Kaleb also fit in a recording of a slow jazz number, track six, "I Know", in the same studio later that day. Technical difficulties stopped him from recording the vocals in town, so when he arrived in Montreal to record the seventh track next, he sang vocals on the previous days recordings from Ottawa too. A Via Rail train took him and his girlfriend all the way to Nova Scotia overnight, where Kaleb sang for the passengers in the rear boxcar, performing mostly original songs he was rehearsing for the studio sessions. They arrived on the east coast to record tracks eight to 10 of the album, tracking upstairs in a century-old brick building downtown Halifax called The Sonic Temple. Kaleb brought all of these recordings back home to Toronto to be compiled, organized, and finished with additional tracking and mixing in his basement recording studio, established in 2009, called The Townhouse Recording Facility & Sound Studio.

With nothing to hide, Kaleb has released independent music from his home studio for 11 years, garnering rave reviews from Canadian music veterans and American music publications. The band's newest EP, It's All Okay, Thanks To You, was released on vinyl in partnership with Record Store Day Canada in April 2020, featuring an infectious single, "Sign On The Road," spinning in rotation for over 30 consecutive weeks on satellite radio.

The Sun Harmonic debuted with three solo albums in 2009-10 before quietly writing and recording an ambitious concept album (created only in the winter season, written only on the piano). After eight years of creation and downfalls, he revealed the double album through a sold-out crowdfunding campaign; it ranged from folk to jazz to classical, with a simple title, Winter. He followed up this massive project with a simple 7-in. record; A Heart So Heavy was released to rave reviews in the spring of 2019 and Kaleb set off on a solo tour to celebrate 10 years as The Sun Harmonic.

In his first decade he toured from coast to coast in Canada as a solo artist, later accompanied by opera singers and a chamber string orchestra, and now he is backed by a rock and roll trio. The band's last gig was on the main stage in Winnipeg, showcased by Canada's Walk of Fame, at Festival Du Voyageur in 2020, just weeks before the pandemic hit. The trio is booked for studio time to record their first full-length record as a band in 2021, it will be Kaleb's sixth Sun Harmonic studio album.

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Michael Raine is the Editor-in-Chief at Canadian Musician and Canadian Music Trade magazines. He also hosts the Canadian Musician Podcast.
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