The Maladies of Adam Stokes


[From Original Website] Since forming in 2009 , The Maladies of Adam Stokes have extended their reach from back-alley clubs to sold-out shows at legendary Toronto venues like The Horseshoe Tavern and Lee’s Palace. They’ve formed a strong fan-base by consistently producing and publishing new music and bringing it to fans new and old through touring and local live performances.

The first full length album from this six-piece folk-rock powerhouse, ‘City of Trees’, released in late 2012, was over a year in the making. The thoughtful and masterful songwriting displayed on record is a testament to the band’s live performances. Organic, open, warm and raw, the songs on this album are fresh and vibrant new entries for the Canadian folk-rock cannon. With too many standout tracks to mention, the overall flow of the record takes the listener on a journey, weaving personal tales through a vibrant musical tapestry created by an accomplished group of players.

Lyrically, the songs are compelling portraits of lead singer Mikey Hill’s personal and musical histories. Dividing his time between The Maladies and his training as a pediatric resident, the themes relayed in the songs display emotional depth that reveal a double-life filled with love and loss. Reading their liner notes, you’ll notice that there isn’t anyone bearing the name Adam in this cryptically named band. The Maladies of Adam Stokes started as a group of friends jamming out their favourite songs using cigarette lighters for slides and hoarse singing voices. These six friends have put their heads and hearts together, working hard toward finding their own sound.

Today, Kohji Nagata has traded in a make-shift slide for a multi-instrumentalist approach, including electric and slide guitars, trumpet and glockenspiel. Kohji and Mikey have a long history of making music together, first meeting in, during which they played shows as large in scope as ‘Taste of Chaos’ and recorded with amazing people, including Juno-award winning producer Dan Achen. These two have a musical relationship that goes beyond words and is best felt in the compositions of their songs.

The soundscape is layered further by lead guitarist Josh ‘Square’ Awerbuck. Fresh with experience from his previous band, Leaders and Dreamers, Josh’s tenacious guitar solos have developed into a strong signature for The Maladies, repeatedly being hailed as a highlight of their live show. Brett Harris literally picked up the bass for the first time for The Maladies and almost immediately found a rhythm that would define the group as a whole…and his beard is like something out of legends. Working with Kohji and Mikey to record demos in, Ted Turner has made the transition from an aspiring sound engineer to picking up the sticks and becoming the drummer for The Maladies. As a new player, his fresh outlook has only emboldened the subtle folk/rock feel and his experience recording is heard in the band’s production. Emily Anderson, a seasoned pianist, and pub-influenced fiddle player, provides the final touch with arrangements that gives texture to The Maladies’ stomp-along tempos.

From the humble beginnings of a guitar and a lighter, The Maladies of Adam Stokes have made tremendous headway in the Toronto folk/rock scene and enjoyed a successful tour to the East coast around the launch of their first full-length record. With a full album under their belt and an eagerness to take on future projects, the band is ready to share their sound with everyone willing to listen.

Artist / AlbumYearCreditPurchase
The Maladies of Adam Stokes
City Of Trees
Oct 2012
Noah Mintz