In the new spirit of melding together different music genres, comes a talented young Montreal band not afraid to create their own sound and be themselves. Time to take a ‘NightDrive’ to The Liquor Store – no, not the place that sells mild beverages like mojitos and beer (or a New Jersey rock band by the same name), but, rather, the next Sunfest source of potent danceable sounds, containing elements of soul, hip-hop, electronica and funk as well as jazz textures, improvisation, and complex chords. The group “seeks to offer explosive performances as well as intricate, well-thought, and more intimate rendering when in studio.” Since 2015, The Store has been promoting its groovy energy through major events (FIJM, Festival de Jazz de Lévis, Festijazz de Rimouski etc.) and homegrown tours in Ontario, New-Brunswick, Québec and Prince Edward-Island.
After two extended plays and countless collaborations, The Liquor Store’s latest album NightDrive arrived in 2020 as the culmination of years of work since the two founding members (both accomplished jazz artists) met each other in a CEGEP (publicly funded Quebec college) and formed the band in 2011. Following the success of NightDrive, which earned the band a GAMIQ for Best Jazz Album of the Year, they currently are working on their next album, titled Colossus. It is the first of two recordings scheduled for a 2021 release.
For all its high-quality jazz-funk, The Liquor Store isn’t just for music connoisseurs. “Even in trying to tap into virtuosity we try to hold back and make music that’s fun to listen to, at the end of the day,” says the band’s trumpet player Rémi Cormier. Or as Forget the Box’s Joseph Mclean put it: “Bring grandma, bring your kid, bring your hipster buddy who spends way too much time talking about gentrification. They’ll all have a good time.”