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Idol charts new course

<p>As the first Canadian Idol, Ryan Malcolm depended on call-in-votes and text messages to launch his solo career.</p>

Ryan Malcolm fronts rock group Low Level Flight

Ryan Malcolm, centre, is back with a new band, Low Level Flight. The group’s debut album, Urgency, in now available in stores.





As the first Canadian Idol, Ryan Malcolm depended on call-in-votes and text messages to launch his solo career.


It only fits then, that the Kingston, Ont., native would turn to another intersection of technology and communication, the Internet, to launch his new incarnation as a front man.


“Basically I was checking out some really cool stuff on My Space,” says Malcolm, explaining how he found the other members of his band.


Malcolm now fronts rock group Low Level Flight, which is rounded out by bassist Shaun Noronha and guitarist/keyboardist James Rooke.


The singer, made famous by Canadian Idol, says his experience with Low Level Flight, which released its debut album Urgency this month, has been refreshingly new.


“It’s so much fun. I get to experience these great things with four friends,” says Malcolm (Dave Carter and Brandon Merenick tour with the band). “As a solo artist, when something really cool happens you’re by yourself.”


The dynamics of being in a rock band also means Malcolm has the opportunity to create music alongside his peers. “We’re like best friends. If somebody had a really good idea, we would embrace it. If someone had an idea that didn’t work, we would be straight up about it,” he says.


“This album was more of a collaborative effort,” adds bassist Shaun Noronha, saying the band really worked well together. The members of Low Level Flight all say they are thrilled with their new album, a collection of high energy songs with heavy guitars and ‘80s-style synthesizers.


“(Listeners) will be completely surprised with the direction of the album not only with myself, but with some of the other guys as well,” says Malcolm. “It’s a pretty cool driving record because it keeps you awake.”


As for Canadian Idol, Malcolm has completely removed himself from the franchise after signing a new deal with indie label Maple Music. Still, he maintains the show was a positive experience. “Idol was a great opportunity for me. I’ve learned so much being in the industry.”


 
 
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