From meeting at the age of four in what they've described as "Hicksville, Nowheretown" (aka Cobourg, Ontario), Luke Gruntz and Ian Fraser, aka Canadian hard rock duo cleopatrick have a long history of defying the odds and cementing their long-standing friendship, with the pair evolving to log 77 million streams and counting sans a major label or big budget. Borne not just from literal proximity in their hometown and best friend status but also from a love of AC/DC in their early days and Drake and Kendrick Lamar later in life, cleopatrick sit in the stylistic stratosphere of fellow modern rock luminaries Royal Blood, Highly Suspect and beyond, thanks largely to their penchant for fuzzy guitars, mosh-ready drums and a fiery lust for DIY.
And while 2020 for many was a total write off across the board for many in the music industry, cleopatrick used the year from hell doing what they do best: harnessing the magic they've cultivated throughout their two-decade friendship and turn that into new sonic gold, with their impending new full-length Bummer ready to shake up the rock and roll landscape and pummel their increasingly trademark sounds into the ether.
Bummer officially unleashes on June 4 via the band's own label Nowhere Special Recordings (via The Orchard / Thirty Tigers / Cooking Vinyl Australia), but in the meantime there's an extra treat for cleopatrick fans and/or fans of rock and video games! To celebrate the pair's recent single FAMILY VAN, cleopatrick have also unveilved an accompanying video game called (obviously) FAMILY VAN: THE GAME!
Complete with an 8-bit soundtrack composed completely by the band themselves, the FAMILY VAN: THE GAME game sees cleopatrick wake up in their hometown of Coburg, Ontario, late for a headline show in Toronto. The player has to drive the duo’s trusty van Vannah Montanah to the gig on time, dodging various obstacles and challenges along the way including picking up the band and crew, major label
contracts and clingy groupies.
“Growing up, Ian and I were always playing video games. I have countless memories of our childhood sleepovers spent drinking root beer, listening to music, and shredding through some newly rented title from the local Blockbuster. We loved these shared digital adventures, always grinding through "one more level" - until we realized our eyes were red and the sun was coming up. Those were some of the best nights. After this whack last year, we felt like both ourselves, and our friends could really use a little piece of that juvenile escapism we enjoyed so often in our youth. And so we made ‘FAMILY VAN: THE GAME’. It's an 8-bit adventure for all ages and it's a dose of much needed escapism. It's a nod to those innocent childhood nights, a vehicle for our new single, and most of all; it's just dope.” -
Luke Gruntz, vocals/guitar
You can play FAMILY VAN: THE GAME right HERE, plus keep up to date with all things cleopatrick as their gear up to take over the world in 2021.
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BY TIANA SPETER