Change is a constant when it comes to the band roster of the Montreal modern rock troupe Islands. And group founder and leader Nicholas Thorburn would not have it any other way.
“There’s always a give and take; you have to suffer for your art, so maybe I have to suffer through some bad attitudes,” explains Thorburn, 28, who also fronted The Unicorns. But he quickly adds that, “Everyone I play with has, overall, had a good attitude. I’ve been blessed with really wonderful players to work with.
“There have just been some artistic decisions to make some drastically different records so Islands can continue to grow and not stagnate and repeat itself. I’ve always wanted Islands to be constantly evolving and changing, and sometimes you have to bring in different players to make that happen.”
The current version of Islands, Thorburn says, is an “amalgam” of players who worked with him on last year’s “Vapours” and its 2008 predecessor, “Arm’s Way.” Thorburn has seen a dozen musicians go through the group on its three releases, and that list may grow when he resumes working on the next album after the group, which is playing three of the new songs in concert, comes off the road this month.
But the next Islands outing is only one of several music and other artistic projects he’s planning. “I definitely need to ease up on musical things,” he says, “because I have lot of plans. I’m slowly working on a comic book. I’m also doing some script writing and other things like that. They’re all in various stages, nothing too developed.
“I’m just always looking for things to do. I like to have lots of things on the go, creatively, and hopefully people will follow me from one thing to the next.”
Islands, Steel Phantoms and Gregory Pepper perform Tuesday, July 13, at the Magic Stick, 4120 Woodward Ave., Detroit. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $10. Call 313-833-9700 or visit www.majesticdetroit.com.
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