The Wilderness of Manitoba: “Orono Park”
The Toronto-based five-piece folk outfit The Wilderness of Manitoba came from the big city, but the band’s complex, lush harmonies and backwoods instrumentation evokes the cold, rugged beauty of wide-open North American vistas.
The Wilderness of Manitoba formed in 2010 in a studio-slash-rehearsal space-slash-musical crash pad in Toronto called the Delaware House. Late night folk jams at the house yielded a full-fledged band that lived and wrote songs together. The band plays a variety of acoustic instruments, but the focus is really on the vocals. According to the band, they craft their songs from the “top down,” beginning with harmonies and melodies and letting the arrangements grow from there.
Today’s song of the day “Orono Park” opens The Wilderness of Manitoba’s first full-length record When You Left the Fire, released in May. The song really showcases the band’s vocal chops. For almost two minutes the band riffs with four-part oohs and ahhs over gently plucked guitar and banjo. Then singers Will Whitwham and Melissa Dalton trade sweet, breathy lyrics as the band starts stomping, albeit politely. It’s a song perfect for a winter’s frolic along some snowy, wooded path somewhere in the Great White North.
You can see the Wilderness of Manitoba this Saturday, Nov. 12, at the Parish.