Kasador to debut new single ‘Lock On,’ release of award-winning music video to follow

A still from the music video for Lock On, a soon-to-be-released single by Kingston’s Kasador. Image via Kasador

Fresh off winning Best Music Video at the 2023 Kingston Canadian Film Festival [KCFF], local band Kasador will release a new single from their upcoming album this week, with ‘Lock On’ hitting streaming services on April 7, 2023. Four days later, the band – with Cameron Wyatt on vocals and guitar, Boris Baker on bass, and drummer Stephen Adubofuor – will also be releasing the award-winning music video for the track, which is set to debut on April 11, 2023. 

The video, produced in partnership with Outpost 12 and Visual Menace, was funded in part through the Slaight Music Video Initiative, a program that pairs local bands with Kingston-based film production companies. As part of the 2023 showcase, Kasador teamed up with the local groups to produce a captivating video for their single ‘Lock On.’ While the video and track have proven to be an early hit, especially among members of the initiative’s jury, according to Boris Baker, the band never actually indeed to release ‘Lock On’ as a single. “When the record was finished, it was probably one of the last songs we would have picked to be a single.” 

While the members of Kasador liked the song, Baker said they felt the chorus “was trying to make too much sense.” So, the band actually ended up removing the chorus from the track, creating a sound the group was happy with. “It was just, like, cooler without a chorus. I think that was a freedom we allowed ourselves, when we weren’t like, ‘This has to be a single.’ We just kind of let it be what it was.”

Once the track was finished, Baker said the band began to think of it as a realistic option for a music video. “It was really the only song on the record that we had a vision of [doing] a music video [for].” After plans for a Toronto-based company to produce three music videos for the band fell through, Kasador was approached by Braden Dragomir of Outpost 12, who wanted to work with the group as part of this year’s music video initiative. 

“Outpost 12 reached out to us and they said… ‘We can get this [funding] from [KCFF]… if you guys want to make this video.’ We [knew] exactly what song we wanted to make for it. It was kind of [a] freedom that now we have a chance to make a video for this song.” 

While Baker said the band was initially hesitant about submitting its video to a competition such as the Slaight Music Video Showcase, which features a juried grand prize, the musician spoke positively about the entire experience. “It was actually a positive, because… you get to make a music video for this, and you get to have it premiered at a festival. So, that was actually really nice.” 

‘Lock On’ officially had its debut screening on March 4, 2023, inside the Regina Rosen Auditorium at the Grand Theatre, alongside the initiative’s 10 other videos, as part of a showcase during KCFF 2023. According to Baker, the premiere was “a little bit scary.”

“I still have a lot of those feelings about judging art, so it was honestly a little bit nerve-wracking. None of us placed any stock in winning or even considered that we would win, because it’s all just so subjective,” he admitted.

L to R: Kasador’s Boris Baker, with Melissa Eapen of Visual Menace, and Braden Dragomir of Outpost 12. Image via Kasador.

However, win the band did. After the premiere screenings, the festival held its closing night awards reception on March 5, where ‘Lock On’ was named Best Music Video by a jury featuring prominent Canadian musicians Sarah Harmer and Hugh Dillon, as well as Toronto-based production manager Javiera Quintana.

The video itself is a visually stunning piece, featuring an intricate and colourful set designed by Melissa Eapen of Visual Menace. “Truly everyone that worked on the film was amazing. [For] Visual Menace… there aren’t really words to describe the amount of time they spent building these incredible props, [most of which] had a maximum of four seconds on screen in the video,” remarked Baker.  

Following the success at the festival, the band began to put in motion a plan to release Lock On as the third single from their sophomore album. “We kind of changed our whole release plan as a result of it… It wasn’t all just about the win, but I think that getting the award, and just seeing the backdrop of people excited [as they were] about this thing coming out, we really re-thought this whole thing.”

“Initially, the video was just going to come out after the record [was released]. And, [we thought], maybe the smart thing to do is not just blindly adhere to a plan that we established four months ago. Maybe it’s good to pivot,” Baker added. 

After moving up the release plans for the single, Baker noted, there was a tight turnaround to ensure the band was able to release the song on the intended date. “Anything we’re going to change last-minute, it needs about a month [of] lead-up time to be effectively released to [streaming services]. So, this decision was kind of made the day after we won. The song comes out on April 7… I don’t know if we would have been able to do it even a day sooner.” 

By the time ‘Lock On’ officially debuts, Kasador will have released three songs from their upcoming record, a follow-up to 2020’s Brood & Bloom. On January 27, the band premiered ‘Youth,’ their first new single in almost three years. Then, towards the end of March, Kasador put out ‘Crawling,’ which currently has close to 4,000 listens on Spotify.

Before recording the new material, the band wrote close to 100 songs during a rather productive two years over the course of the pandemic, Baker noted. “We did have a lot of time to refine [our] sound and refine that identity over the pandemic, and we spent a ton of time doing it.”

Lock On will officially be released on April 7, with the track now available to be pre-saved on major streaming services. The music video will debut on April 11 on the band’s YouTube channel. Kasador has yet to announce a release date for the subsequent full-length studio album. 

Local music fans can catch the band in person this summer, as the Kasador was recently announced as one of the headliners for the 2023 Skeleton Park Arts Festival (SPAF), taking place June 21 to 25. 

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