If you keep up with the Canadian punk scene, you may be wondering who A Gentleman’s Pact is. Formed in Beaumont, Alberta, this quartet has released four albums to this day. Their most recent album, Who the Fuck is AGP? was released this past May in the band’s hometown. Songs in this album are fast-paced with driving drum rhythms. Some songs like “Ex’s Chainsaw Massacre” are amusingly written and cheeky. Kaleb Kaiser (lead vocals), Jacob Kachowski (guitarist and secondary vocals), Darren Guy (drummer), and Scott Love (bassist) comprise this spunky group.
Kaiser and Kachowski met through a mutual friend in high school some time in 2007. The two began writing songs together but had never formed a band. Guy later joined the band when Kaiser, who manages the bar Live City, booked Guy’s older brother’s band to perform at the venue. Guy was part of his older brother’s band.
“I was 18 and I was drunk on Tequila for the first time. Kaleb and Jake were playing an acoustic guitar at the end of the night and my drums were still set up behind them from our set. So I basically just jumped behind them and started playing along,” said Guy.
Since gaining prominence, the group has played at Canadian Music Week twice. Kaiser said that the first time the band played at CMW, the band line-up was much different. At the time, there were five members: three guitarists, a bassist, and a drummer. Two members had left the group before the group’s appearance in Toronto, as a result of personal decisions. Due to the departure of two members, Kaiser said that the band scrapped the songs played in that year. In the two months until their performance at CMW 2016, the band had written nine new songs.
Kaiser said, “Our performance at Sneaky Dee’s [while at CMW] was well-received and it did spawn a little magazine interview so that was exciting for us. There are so many little details and stories that make that first trip what it was. There were beautiful moments, ugly moments, breakdowns, and arguments. To me, that initial trip made us better friends and a better band.”
On their most recent album, Guy described all the songs to be “in a punk rock vein,” and thought that the album has been well-received by fans. Kachowski described the album as an eclectic mishmash of hardcore, punk, and alternative music. In addition, Kaiser described the songs as a mixture of humorous and dark themes, with drug addiction being a main theme.
“I try to explore dark themes in my lyrics in order to let the listeners not feel so fucked up for having negative thoughts or dark thoughts. Addiction is a big theme in the album. We’ve been there. We’ve seen it go horrifically,” said Kaiser.
When I asked the band where the cover art for Who The Fuck is AGP? came from, Kaiser praised artist Jill Hollett from Calgary. He said that the cover art pays homage to the NOFX live album I Heard They Suck Live. In terms of how the album received its title, Kaiser related a humorous story: “The name of the record is taken from an actual drunk heckler at one of our shows in Edmonton. He just yelled, ‘Who the fuck is AGP?’ And we felt that was simply perfect.”
In the cover art, Guy is featured as having a broken snare drum laid over his head. According to Guy, this is because his nickname, given by fans, is “The Animal.” Guy said this depiction of him in the cover art is fitting of his nickname and the subsequent related persona.
“I’m also the shy one, so having my face covered was intentional,” Guy added.
One of the songs on the “Ex’s Chainsaw Massacre” is comical, to say the least. In short, the song talks about waking up in the basement of one’s ex-girlfriend and “tied to a lawn chair / praying to the gods she wasn’t there.” When I asked Kaiser if the song was based on a real-life experience, which I jokingly added that I hoped it was not, he said that it was not.
“I have never been tied up to a lawn chair as an ex appeared with a chainsaw to murder me,” Kaiser said more specifically.
“Yeah. My ex tried to murder me,” Kachowski joked.
Most recently, AGP has played at Night of the Living Punks in Beaumont, Alberta.