The Tea Party

A Canadian band originating from Windsor Ontario, Jeff Martin, Stuart Chatwood and Jeff Burrows have been piquing my imagination since the mid-nineties. Their music had altered over the years, from the Moroccan Roll vibe to the more metal touches in later albums, but its stayed familiar, and more than a few songs are constantly in my mental demand.

To describe them in one paragraph is impossible. The three musicians are each individually gifted, and guest artists frequently make appearances in their works. The few times I’ve seen them play live, they always had someone new to introduce, and when I saw the lead singer in a solo show, he still took the time to showcase others’ works.

My favorite time to listen to this band is on a dark country road, on a fall evening, with crisp air coming in through the vents of the dash, and the tunes belting out through the speakers until my body shakes with the tempo of the music, not the rumbling of the chassis.

Now, while I could talk about each song they’ve ever crafted, what I want to do, instead, is focus on the 3 of their songs that have helped me create.

Perhaps their most famous song, Heaven Coming Down, is one of my favorite songs to wake up to, and it was this song in particular, with its ticking clock opening, rising strains, and repeating riffs that feel mystical and hopeful all at once, that led to an entire scene which had helped to create a plot of royal intrigue, powerful ancient warriors, and loyalties tested. Every time I hear the song, my mind plays the very image in my head, and it has never become boring. I hope that, when I ever get the chance to write out that story, I can do what I see, justice.

Going from the gentle, to the savage, Gyroscope too, starts with one sound, but it is more discordant, and as soon as the music flies into your ears, you know it is an entirely different work. Strangely enough, not one scene was built around it, but every time I hear it, I get pumped. I get images of snidely talking dragons, demons mocking those who stand against them, or a great serpent coiling itself about a vulnerable child, singing whispers of promises.

Empty Glass has one of my favorite references to other songs, ever, in it. For those not in the know, it touches on David Bowie’s “Space Oddity”, as it has almost a prayer to Major Tom, and I love the call out or Easter egg, or whatever you want to call it. But that’s not the only reason I love it. It’s been mentioned that Genmos has several generations planned, and it was this song that inspired the final battle. I see the knights of Cerberus, linked arm in arm, defending each other from the hordes of the nano-live, I see the order of the Bushido putting a valiant stand alongside the cast general, all in the hopes to cease the activities of corrupted technophiles. The song plays to its entirety, and I almost cheer when I see the descendent forced to take the one final shot, to destroy her ancestor.