Toronto doesn't dance. The resistance by some of the city's populace to its own after-hours music scene has hamstrung the efforts of DIY artists to nurture a lively, healthy scene. The greatest weapon wielded by these fun-wreckers is noise complaints, and that's the struggle Scarberian artist Just John is seeking to illuminate in his new track "NOISE."
Produced by Fevra of Bedroomer, the song's a joy, with a refrain of "so lit I got a noise complaint" speaking profoundly to the Toronto experience. Of course, with its jazzy keys, percolating hand drums, and infectious rapping making it sound like a new-age Neptunes jam, you wonder why anyone would ask to turn this song down in the first place.
"There's a crisis happening in Toronto when it comes to D.I.Y venues closing down because of complaints," Just John told Noisey about the track's deeper message, "and we wanted to send a message that even if one unhappy tenant may try to shut us down that we should uplift ourselves and keep going because people show out to these functions to free up themselves, share their stories, feel safe and vibe. The city's got to pay attention to these parts too in order for the industry to thrive."
"'NOISE' all started from a conga groove that I recorded with my boss and mentor Kevin Pooler of the sound design company I work for called LP24 Audio," says Fevra on the creation of the song. "We rented a bunch of percussion for the pack and through multiple performances of various grooves I came back to this one for my own production. I started programming some drums over top then began some chord ideas. After that it all came natural, I added the bass line and synths to fit the vibe. I had my friend Trevor Tokola try some stuff on his alto sax for NOISE and was really pleased with what he sent. John, Cheffy & I built around the original instrumental for a couple months until it was perfect to all of us."
Listen to "NOISE" as loud as you want to below.