War Baby was born in the grimier passes of Vancouver, where, before the formation of the band, friends and collaborators Brock Allen (bassist and singer) and Jon Redditt (guitarist and singer) had arrived from the Texas-North like atmosphere of Calgary. It was Vancouver, the city that was home to Canadian punk veterans like NomeansNo and SNFU, which, in its gloominess and frustration, fostered in the future band-members the idea of revisiting the loud and aggressive music which had been so seminal in the city in the past.
Struggling to find work and keep a roof above head in admittedly one of the most expensive cities in the world, further desertion seemed likely until a chance meeting in 2008 between Jon and Kirby Jay Fisher (drums and back-up vocals), an Australian who had just landed in Vancouver and never intended to stay, finally ignited War Baby in its first formation as a duo. It was while the two sifted through dead people clothes for vintage gems in a rag warehouse that the two had discovered a musical kinship, and they began envisioning a band that encompassed the most obscure and odd personal interests of the past decades.
After sneaking into and being kicked out of a half dozen jam spaces, a sound quickly emerged that combined the punk heavy noise of Aussie acts like the Scientists and Cosmic Psychos with the precision and ferocity of American Noise Rock, ranging from the overlooked (Glazed Baby or Live Skull) and the obvious (Jesus Lizard and Shellac). Four years of rough education passed, as well as the addition and parting ways of bassist Aaron Weiss, before War Baby’s first LP Jesus Horse was realized, helmed by Jordan Koop (recently awarded a “Masterclass” session in France with Steve Albini) at the Noise Floor Recording Studio in 2013. As a nod to their past employment as vintage pickers, they had narrowly managed to fund the costs of the album by selling a pair of 1930’s buckle-back Levis.
2013 through 2014 proved to be hallmark years for War Baby- traveling and playing in China, as well as tours throughout Western Canada with NoMeansNo proteges (and tourmates) Invasives, having Jesus Horse selected for many end-of-year lists (including Huffington Post’s top ten Indie albums of 2013), becoming the 30th anniversary winners of Vancouver’s prestigious Shindig! contest (put on by CiTR, the home of Nardwuar) and crushing audiences at spring festivals such as Sled Island and CMW. Throughout their history, War Baby have been fortunate to share the stage with local Vancouver legends like White Lung and SNFU and out of town greats such as DZ Death Rays, The Dune Rats, Big Business, The Blind Shake, King Tuff, Helms Alee, The Shrine,The Men, and Eagles of Death Metal to name but a few.
Early in 2014, War Baby returned to the care of Koop to begin work on their sophomore LP titled Death Sweats, ultimately mastered by the legendary Bob Weston. Brock, had in the interim joined full-time as bassist and song contributor, carrying with him his own collection of savage songs. Probably no other song could introduce the new mood and direction of the album better than “Master Blaster”, the amelodic yet indescribably catchy leadout single and opening track. With all members swapping roles on vocals between verse and chorus, the song gives the listener a vision of the brilliant mutant that War Baby has become.
Halloween 2015: Death Sweats was unleashed in North America on the band’s own imprint Bummer Records and will be available soon in Europe on Germany’s legendary punk label, P.Trash Records. In 2016 the band engaged on a nation wide “Don’t Happy Be Worry” Canadian tour in support of Death Sweats. A new EP “Coma Kid” recorded by Jesse Gander (White Lung, Japandroids, Bison BC) was released in early 2017.