Not many Canadian artists can say their journey started in a cramped and sweaty apartment in Thailand.
At first glance, it seems counterintuitive: Among Millions’ music is unmistakably Canadian, born of the atmosphere and influences that are part of life growing up in rural Ontario. Singing honest and heartfelt songs about trials and triumphs, loves and losses, frontman Joshua Doherty is a man well attuned to the heartbeat of his home in St. Mary’s. Sometimes, however, we only truly see things in focus from afar.
Doherty spent two years teaching English in Thailand, during which he had little to occupy himself besides a guitar and an iPod full of music. A long-time member of hard-rock and metal bands, Doherty found himself looking for an artistic change of pace. Drawing inspiration from the melodic and intricate indie folk rock of artists like Frightened Rabbit and Sufjan Stevens, Doherty purchased some recording equipment, taught himself to use it and quickly wrote and recorded a five-song EP entitled “Circles to Squares.” Upon returning home, and with encouragement from friends and family, Doherty hit the road for a tour of Eastern Canada, and Among Millions was born.
Sometimes playful, sometimes wistful and always thoughtful, Among Millions’ music is both thought-provoking and instantly familiar. Doherty is not one to shy away from deeply personal lyrical content, occasionally offset by a wry and surprising humour. Songs like “I Can Dream” and “Effortless Struggle” deal honestly with relationship conflicts and the temptations of the flesh, and they sound equally at home exploding from a stage in a Toronto rock club or strummed around a Muskoka campfire.