Thrush Hermit

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Thrush Hermit
Thrush Hermit.jpg
Thrush Hermit, 1997
Background information
Origin Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
Genres Alternative rock
Years active19921999, 2010, 2019
Labels Murderecords, Elektra, Sonic Unyon
Associated acts Camouflage Nights
Past members Joel Plaskett
Rob Benvie
Ian McGettigan
Michael Catano
Cliff Gibb
Benn Ross

Thrush Hermit was a Canadian alternative rock band active in the 1990s, known for their "highly energetic, humorous, and unpredictable performances," as quoted by Vice News. [1]



Thrush Hermit was formed in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1992 by Joel Plaskett (vocals, guitar), Rob Benvie (vocals, guitar), Ian McGettigan (vocals, bass), and Michael Catano (drums). Catano was replaced by Cliff Gibb in 1994; [2] Gibb in turn left the band in 1999 and was replaced by Benn Ross.

They signed with Murderecords in 1994 in time to release their Smart Bomb EP, which featured Benvie's song "French Inhale" and Plaskett's "Hated It". The former would get some rotation on MuchMusic, which then held a reputation for more alternative programming, while the latter would end up in the Kevin Smith film Mallrats . [3]

Following the release of the band's second EP, the Steve Albini-produced The Great Pacific Ocean, the group signed in 1996 with Elektra Entertainment which released their first full-length album, Sweet Homewrecker , in 1997. The Memphis-recorded album showcased the songwriting of Plaskett, Benvie and McGettigan. The album proved a disappointment from Elektra's standpoint however, and Thrush Hermit was bought out of their contract.

After their foray into the United States market, Thrush Hermit returned north to release their final album, Clayton Park , on Sonic Unyon in 1999. The album was a critical success, and was nominated for a Juno Award. [4] [5] Thrush Hermit performed as part of Humble & Fred Fest at Fort York in Toronto, [6] and at the Horseshoe Tavern [7] in 1999, but made plans to disband in September that year. [8] The band had signed up for the triple-headliner "Front Man War Tour" alongside The Flashing Lights and Local Rabbits, but had to back out because of Plaskett's health. Once he recovered, the band embarked on their own farewell tour of Canada, in December 1999, and then disbanded. [9]

Thrush Hermit were featured on the mainstage at Edgefest in 1995; rather than playing their own material they played exclusively Steve Miller Band covers. Similarly, for their first national TV appearance on MuchMusic they played a Nazareth cover instead of highlighting any songs from their album. [8]

Plaskett went on to begin a recording career with his band The Joel Plaskett Emergency. Benvie released a solo record under the moniker "Tigre Benvie", and subsequently joined The Dears, while McGettigan began producing records by Canadian rock acts such as The Flashing Lights. McGettigan also produced records for Plaskett, and later became a member of The Joel Plaskett Emergency. Benvie and McGettigan then joined the band Camouflage Nights, which features a revolving door cast of musicians.

Thrush Hermit reunited for a brief set following a Joel Plaskett Emergency show at the Marquee Club in Halifax on December 31, 2005. The band also reunited for a brief tour of eastern Canada in March 2010. Locations included Moncton, two nights in Halifax at the Paragon (originally the Marquee), Ottawa, Peterborough, Waterloo, two nights and one afternoon show in Toronto. That year New Scotland Records released a box set of all of the Thrush Hermit recordings. [10]

In 2019, the band announced that they were reuniting for 14 shows to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the release of Clayton Park. [11]

Tribute record

In 2008 a tribute album was released, featuring Thrush Hermit songs by Canadian artists including The Meligrove Band and Two Hours Traffic. The album was issued by Gooseberry Records on CD and digital download via Zunior.




7" Singles


See also

Related Research Articles

Murderecords is an independent record label that releases the music of the Canadian rock band Sloan. Originally formed in 1992 to produce just the records of that band, it later released work of other bands including Eric's Trip, The Hardship Post, Al Tuck, Stinkin' Rich, Hip Club Groove, The Inbreds, Thrush Hermit, and The Super Friendz, and with the possible exception of Sonic Unyon was Canada's best-known indie label in the 1990s. Later, the roster was stripped bare, and released Sloan albums exclusively for nearly a decade. In 2008, however, albums by Will Currie and the Country French and Pony Da Look were released by the label.

Rob Benvie is a Canadian musician and writer who has performed with alternative rock acts Thrush Hermit, Bankruptcy, Camouflage Nights, The Tennis Injury, and The Dears. He also records and occasionally performs live as Tigre Benvie.

The Super Friendz are a Canadian indie rock band from Halifax, Nova Scotia. They were initially active between 1994 and 1997, before reforming in 2003.

Joel Plaskett Canadian rock musician

William Joel MacDonald Plaskett is a Canadian rock musician and songwriter based in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He was a member of Halifax alternative rock band Thrush Hermit in the 1990s. Plaskett performs in a number of genres, from blues and folk to hard rock, country, and pop.

The Hardship Post was a Canadian alternative rock band, that formed in St. John’s, Newfoundland in 1992 and moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia, during the Halifax Pop Explosion of the early 1990s.

Clayton Park may refer to:

Camouflage Nights is a Canadian electronic rock band from Toronto fronted by Rob Benvie and Ian McGettigan.

<i>Clayton Park</i> (album) 1999 studio album by Thrush Hermit

Clayton Park is the second full-length album by Canadian rock band Thrush Hermit. It was released on Sonic Unyon in 1999, and is the last album they released as a band. The album produced two singles and videos for the songs "From the Back of the Film" and "The Day We Hit the Coast".

<i>In Need of Medical Attention</i> 1999 studio album by Joel Plaskett

In Need of Medical Attention is the debut solo album by Joel Plaskett, released in 1999 concurrently with Thrush Hermit's Clayton Park.

<i>Sweet Homewrecker</i> 1997 studio album by Thrush Hermit

Sweet Homewrecker is the first full-length album by Canadian rock band Thrush Hermit. It was released on Elektra Records in 1997.

<i>La De Da</i> (album) 2005 studio album by Joel Plaskett

La De Da is the second solo album by Joel Plaskett, released in 2005, following two albums released under the band name Joel Plaskett Emergency. The 2006 release also includes the three-song EP Make a Little Noise, by Joel Plaskett Emergency which was also released as a bonus CD with the Make a Little Noise DVD.

Truthfully Truthfully is the second album by artist Joel Plaskett under the band name Joel Plaskett Emergency and his third since splitting from Thrush Hermit.

<i>Down at the Khyber</i> 2001 studio album by Joel Plaskett Emergency

Down at the Khyber is the first album that Joel Plaskett recorded with his backing band The Emergency. The title was influenced by the many days and nights spent playing and recording at The Khyber.

<i>Ashtray Rock</i> 2007 studio album by Joel Plaskett Emergency

Ashtray Rock is an album by Canadian indie rock band Joel Plaskett Emergency, released on April 17, 2007.

Local Rabbits were a Canadian alternative rock band based in Montreal, Quebec, active in the 1990s and early 2000s. The band consisted of vocalists and guitarists Peter Elkas and Ben Gunning, bassist Ryan Myshrall and drummer Jay Tustin.

Ian McGettigan is a Canadian rock musician and producer. He was the bassist and a singer and songwriter for Thrush Hermit.

Dave Marsh (musician) Canadian musician

Dave Marsh is a Canadian musician, best known for being drummer of Halifax power pop group The Super Friendz in the 1990s, of Joel Plaskett Emergency in the 2000s, and as a solo artist.

Hip Club Groove was a Canadian hip hop band, active in the 1990s. Originally from Truro, Nova Scotia and later based in Halifax, the band consisted of rappers Derek "MC" Mackenzie and Cory "Cheklove Shakil" Bowles, and DJ Brian "DJ Moves" Higgins.

The Flashing Lights were a Canadian alternative rock band, active in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

<i>The Park Avenue Sobriety Test</i> 2015 studio album by Joel Plaskett

The Park Avenue Sobriety Test is an album by Canadian singer-songwriter Joel Plaskett, released March 17, 2015 on Pheromone Recordings.


  1. "An Oral History of Thrush Hermit’s ‘Clayton Park’". Vice , March 28, 2019.
  2. Michael Barclay; Ian A. D. Jack; Jason Schneider (2011). Have Not Been the Same: The CanRock Renaissance 1985-1995. ECW Press. p. 515. ISBN   978-1-55022-992-9.
  3. Josh O'Kane (1 April 2016). Nowhere with You: The East Coast Anthems of Joel Plaskett, The Emergency and Thrush Hermit. ECW Press. pp. 50–52. ISBN   978-1-77090-840-6.
  4. "THRUSH HERMIT: NEW TOUR, NEW LABEL, NEW SOUND". Chart Attack, April 22, 1999, by James Hayashi-Tennant
  5. "Retrospective Reviews: Thrush Hermit 'Clayton Park'". Noisey, by Matt Williams, Oct 10 2014
  6. "Live Reviews: Humble & Fred Fest August 28, 1999 Historic Fort York, Toronto". Chart Attack, Howard Druckman, August 28, 1999
  7. "Live Reviews: Thrush Hermit February 2, 1999 The Horseshoe Tavern, Toronto, ON". Chart Attack
  8. 1 2 Gillis, Carla. "Thrush Hermit flies again: Quintessential 90s canuck pop sensations drop a multi-disc set and hit the road for a two-week binge". NOW , March 24–31, 2010. Volume 29.
  9. "Joel Plaskett gets back to his Led Zeppelin roots". National Post, April 25, 2012
  10. "Thrush Hermit The Complete Recordings". Exclaim!, By Vish Khanna, May 25, 2010
  11. "Thrush Hermit Announce 'Clayton Park' 20th Anniversary Reunion Shows and Vinyl Release". Exclaim! , March 24, 2019.