Ten Second Epic is a Canadian five-piece alternative rock band from Edmonton. The band formed in 2002 consisting of Andrew Usenik (vocals), Daniel Carriere (guitar), Craig Spelliscy (guitar), Sandy MacKinnon (bass guitar) and Patrick Birtles (drums). TSE released three full-length albums in the course of their career, Count Yourself In, Hometown and Better Off. The band officially announced their breakup on February 25, 2014, but will be doing a farewell tour across Canada in May 2014.
Early years (2002–2006)
The band started in 2002 as a casual project for 5 high school friends, practicing in basement of drummer Patrick Birtles parents' house. After playing a handful of local shows in Edmonton at various all-ages venues, the band recorded the 'Your Famous Last Words' EP with friend and current Shout Out Out Out Out member Nik Kozub. The EP was a 5 song disc pressed by the band members and sold at shows. The band began playing shows across Western Canada and eventually committed their next release to local Edmonton independent record label 'Farway Records'.
The band soon after returned to the studio to record the One More for the Road EP with friend Real Cardinal. For the release of the EP in 2004, the band played a free show at the Edmonton Events Center which ended up filling the venue to capacity at 1600 people, leaving hundreds more outside. The show caught the eye of the Edmonton media and sparked several featured on the band including being voted the "Best Band in Edmonton" by SEE Magazine. Soon after the release, Farway Records closed their doors and the band re-released the EP independently.
One More for the Road went on to sell nearly 4,000 units across Canada & the US (mostly through offstage sales at shows). As well, the band began to gain a presence online through the popularity of the song Home In The Heartland. The band's long-standing commitment to touring endlessly across Canada was well served during the release, with highlights including playing all of the Canadian dates on the Warped Tour and opening multiple Canadian dates of the Taste of Chaos tour.
Count Yourself In (2006–2009)
Following the moderate success of One More for the Road, Ten Second Epic explored the possibility of recording with an experienced producer for their next record, which led to catching the ear of Canadian super producer Garth Richardson. However, his schedule seemed to prevent them from working together. In March 2006, the band played a showcase at Canadian Music Week, and on the drive home from Toronto to Edmonton they received word that a project Garth was working on had canceled, and that he could do their record if they began production immediately. Despite all members still working jobs or attending post-secondary school back home, they decided to keep driving straight to The Farm studios in Gibsons, BC to begin recording. Still with no record label, the band took out personal loans (from banks, friends, & family) to fund the project.
Shortly after the record was done, Ten Second Epic signed a licensing agreement for Canada with Blackbox Recordings, originally dubbed Black Box Recordings. The result of Richardson’s collaboration with the band was Ten Second Epic’s first full-length album, Count Yourself In, released on October 10, 2006.
The music video for the first single "Suck It Up, Princess" was shot by friend Colin Minihan. The video was shot on an abandoned transport boat near Mission, BC with an $800 budget. During the 12 hour shoot, the band traveled to Langley, BC in between daytime & night scenes to play the final show of a tour they were on. The video was given 'Light Rotation' on MuchMusic, which was later upgraded to 'Medium Rotation' based on the demand from viewer requests. The video is considered the starting point for a strong history of MuchMusic supporting the band and their music videos.
The subsequent singles furthered the success of the album. "Count Yourself In" was the first single to gain substantial radio airplay for the band, breaking into the Top 50 on Active Rock on Canadian Radio. The song was nominated for Rock Song of the Year by Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB) for the 11th Annual Canadian Radio Music Awards, and was included on the MuchMusic compilation disc PunchMuch. The video received a nomination for Best Independent Video at the 2007 MuchMusic Video Awards. The video for "Old Habits Die Hard" was the first video by the band to break into the MuchMusic Top 30 Countdown and the song was included on the Big Shiny Tunes 12 compilation, which was certified Gold in Canada (50,000 units) on July 30, 2008. The album also garnered a nomination for Best Rock Group at the 2008 Canadian Independent Music Awards.
During the album cycle the band had several Canadian tours including tours with The Spill Canvas, Hedley, Moneen, Living With Lions, Cartel (US Tour), and playing Virgin Festival (Calgary), Cutting Edge Music Festival, and Wakestock (Toronto).
Leading up to the release of their next record, Blackbox Recordings released The Virtual EP for an exclusive digital release on October 16, 2008. The EP features two remixes of songs from Count Yourself In (Suck It Up Princess & Boys Will Be Boys), as well as two songs from Hometown: Yours To Lose & Life Times. Their second full length album Hometown was released January 27, 2009 and debuted at No. 16 on the Canadian Album Chart. It has since been released in Japan & Europe.
The first single, Life Times received a nominated for Rock Video of the Year at the 2009 MuchMusic Video Awards. While still maintaining the support of Canadian Rock radio stations, it was also the first single by the band to receive significant adds to Canadian CHR radio stations. The 3rd single, which features fellow Canadian and long-time friend LIGHTS was nominated for Best Independent Video at the 2010 MuchMusic Video Awards and was featured on the Big Shiny Tunes 14 compilation. Ten Second Epic also received a nomination for Best New Group at the 2010 Juno Awards
During the album release party for Hometown on February 22, 2009 at the Starlite Room in Edmonton, the band announced the show was being filmed and released as a live DVD. The band has since disclosed that the DVD will be released surrounding the release of their next record.
To support the album the band toured Canada, Japan, Europe & the US with bands including A Day To Remember, You Me At Six, Silverstein, and Theory of a Deadman. They have also played various festivals including The Bamboozle, 1000 Islands Music Festivall, and Virgin Festival (Montreal)
Better Off (2011–present)
The band released their third studio full-length album on September 19, 2011 in Australia & Europe on Hassle Records, September 20, 2011 in Canada on Blackbox Records, & September 21, 2011 in Japan on Bullion. The band filmed the music video for first single, Young Classics, at an Edmonton area dirt biking facility.
Shortly after the release of the album, the band also released a studio documentary of the making of Better Off, as well as a brief history of the band. The DVD was nominated for 'Music DVD of the Year' at the 2013 Juno Awards.
After the release, the band toured through Asia with Simple Plan in January 2012. After touring Japan, they returned home to film the music video for their song Better Off, and then immediately set-out on a tour that took the band across the USA, UK, & Canada. The following summer, the band again continued the US, this time on the Vans Warped Tour.
On April 28 at the 2012 Edmonton Music Awards, they were nominated for 4 categories, Group of the Year, Album of the Year, Rock Album of the Year, and the People's Choice award. They won Group of the Year.
Early in 2014 the band announced they would no longer be active, and they would be doing one final tour across Canada in May 2014.
- Andrew Usenik – vocals
- Daniel Carriere – guitar
- Craig Spelliscy – guitar
- Sandy MacKinnon – bass guitar
- Patrick Birtles – drums
|Year||Album Details||Chart Peak Positions|
Count Yourself In
- Your Famous Last Words (2002)
- One More for the Road (2004)
- The Virtual EP (2008)
|2006||"Suck It Up, Princess"||—||—||Count Yourself In|
|2007||"Count Yourself In"||—||—|
|"Old Habits Die Hard"||—||—|
|2009||"Welcome to Wherever You Are"||—||—|
|"Every Day" (featuring Lights)||—||—|
|2011||"Young Classics"||22||37||Better Off|
|"—" denotes a release that did not chart.|
|Year||Title||Album||MM CD||Video Premise||Director|
|2006||"Suck It Up, Princess"||Count Yourself In||—||Performance||Colin Minihan|
|2007||"Count Yourself In"||—||The band ponders leaving their deadend jobs|
|"Old Habits Die Hard"||No. 19||A family battles with addiction|
|"Avenue Days"||—||The band takes over a small town when a scheduled show is canceled|
|2008||"Life Times"||Hometown||No. 15||The band raises an infant they discover left outside their garage|
|2009||"Welcome To Wherever You Are"||No. 10||The band films a music video around an unsuspecting couple||Marc Ricciardelli|
|"Every Day"(featuring LIGHTS)||No. 12||A young man attempts to ask his girlfriend for forgiveness||Sean Michael Turrell|
|2011||"Young Classics"||Better Off||—||Performance||Michael Maxxis|
|2012||"Better Off"||—||The band trains for a hockey game against a mystery opponent||Ben Knechtel|
|"Runaway"||—||Performance in Japan||Chady Awad|
- “Better Off” - Studio Documentary DVD (2011)
Awards and nominations
|MuchMusic Video Award||2007||Best Independent Video||Nominated|
|Canadian Radio Music Award||2008||Rock||Nominated|
|Canadian Independent Music Awards||2008||Rock Band of the Year||Nominated|
|MuchMusic Video Award||2009||Best Rock Video||Nominated|
|Juno Award||2010||Best New Group||Nominated|
|MuchMusic Video Award||2010||Best Independent Video||Nominated|
|Edmonton Music Awards||2012||Album of the Year||Nominated|
|Group of the Year||Won|
|Rock Album of the Year||Nominated|
|Juno Awards||2013||Music DVD of The Year||Nominated|
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