Interview With Sam Paquin of Sam & The Terrible News

The Quebec City alternative rock/punk rock quintet Sam & The Terrible News will be releasing their debut album, Face A, on August 20th after being delayed a few months because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. To get more insight on their forthcoming debut album, the band's sound, influences, and a little bit of what the band would like to do in the future, I had the chance to pick the brain of Samuel Paquin, the band's namesake, lead singer, and guitarist. Of course, there's some more we discussed, and it's all below!

Full band press photo for Quebec punk rock band Sam & The Terrible News. Photographed by Etienne Dionne.
Photo courtesy of Etienne Dionne.

Who are Sam & The Terrible News?

S: We are a punk rock band from Quebec City formed in 2020. Our group consists of myself, Samuel Paquin (lead vocal and guitar), Sebastien Giard (guitar), Jonathan Martel (guitar), Simon Dorval (bass) and Jonathan Racine (drums). We have been friends for years, and decided to start this band to, of course, have fun playing music together, but also to conquer the world! [Laughs].

How would you describe the band for anyone who may have never heard your music before? S: I would say that our sound is a blend of '90s alternative rock and early '00s California punk rock. Catchy songs, heavy guitars, fresh melodies.


Your debut album, Face A, is set for release this Summer after the pandemic delayed it. Is that correct? S: Exactly, Face A will be released on August 20. We had to delay the release by a few months as the pandemic started right in the middle of our recording sessions. However, the result is fantastic and was worth the wait.


It must be exhilarating to be finally releasing the album?


S: Damn right. I have been working on these songs for about two years. To me, it’s like bringing a child into the world. This is very exciting!


What are your musical influences that shape your songwriting and sound?


S: I have been inspired by a lot of bands that I have been listening to since my teenage years. Such as Green Day, Jimmy Eat World, Foo Fighters, Tom Petty, The Beatles, and John Mellencamp, just to name a few.


If given the chance, are there any musicians that you would like to collaborate with? Rather this is past or present and either to write a song/album, produce an album with, or even tour with?


S: There is a running gag between us that someday we will tour with the Foo Fighters. It's mostly meant as a joke, but that would actually be our secret dream. In terms of songwriting, collaborating with Billie Joe Armstrong would be the ultimate achievement to me. There is nothing wrong with dreaming! [Laughs].


You guys have now released three singles off Face A in the last few months, how have they been received by listeners so far?


S: The response has been awesome so far. We've received a lot of great feedback from people across the country and the USA. To receive such validation from people is really reassuring and motivating for what's coming up next.


Do you have a favourite unreleased song off Face A that you’re eager for people to hear?


S: We currently have about twenty-five songs written for our second release. We are spoiled for choices, and that's great. I have a big crush on one of those new songs called "I'm Gasoline + Fire." It will for sure be part of our second album.


I’d assume with the slow reopening of things in America, of course, a little more slowly in Canada, you must be itching to hit a stage again? S: Since the band officially started in 2020, we did not have the chance to play shows yet, because you know, pandemic obliged. We are now so ready to hit the stage for the first time. Just thinking about it makes me smile.


Do you have any album release plans? S: We are planning on touring this fall to promote the release of Face A. Hopefully, the sanitary measures will be lifted at that point. We also plan to go back to the studio by the end of this year.


Finally, how have you all been keeping busy with all the downtime this past year? S: We all have day jobs, so it has occupied most of our time, of course. Also, all the guys in the band have young kids beside me, so it kept them pretty busy. On my end, I took this time to relax, watch Netflix, and write songs. Looking back on this past year, we did not have that much of a negative impact on our lives, luckily. Thanks for the time, Sam! I hope to see you on tour in the near future! Is there anything else you may want to add before you go?


S: Thank you very much for having me, and we hope to see you soon at a show. Ciao!

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