Nick Thorburn performing with Islands in Stockholm, 2012.
|Also known as||Nick Thorburn
November 27, 1981 |
Campbell River, British Columbia, Canada
|Associated acts||The Unicorns
Th' Corn Gangg
Nicholas Thorburn (born November 27, 1981) is a Canadian musician originally from Campbell River. He has fronted numerous bands such as The Unicorns, Th' Corn Gangg, Islands, Reefer, and Human Highway. Thorburn occasionally goes by the stage name "Nick Diamonds".
Thorburn was born in 1981 in Campbell River, British Columbia, Canada, which he says has influenced his songwriting. Nature, in particular whales, are a subject of interest; his lyrics include references to rivers, swans and frogs. He also had a formative experience in a visit, along with his father, to see the killer whale Luna; his memories of the visit became an influential part of Islands' debut album Return to the Sea.
His vocals have been noted as a distinguishing feature of The Unicorns and Islands. His production technique involves dark personification over enjoyable music, though he is "usually wary of composing dance tracks." This contrast is observed in his live performance as well.
In 2005, he co-wrote with Adam Gollner the satirical charity song "Do They Know It's Hallowe'en?" organizing the collaboration of many artists. He guest performed on Les Savy Fav's 2007 album Let's Stay Friends.
Thorburn has made an album with Honus Honus (aka Ryan Kattner) of the band Man Man: "One thing that has been floated around is Honus Honus from Man Man and I making a record in a new (sub)genre we are developing, called Doom Wop, which is essentially low frequency, and extremely slowed down music atop traditional doo wop harmonies. Or something." The project, called Mister Heavenly, also involves drummer Joe Plummer of Modest Mouse and The Black Heart Procession and has had actor Michael Cera playing bass on the tour.
Thorburn was featured on the 2012 El-P album Cancer 4 Cure, singing the chorus of the track "Stay Down". He has performed the song live with El-P on multiple occasions.
- Who Will Cut Our Hair When We're Gone? with Alden Penner & Jamie Thompson as The Unicorns (2003)
- Return to the Sea as Islands (2006)
- Arm's Way as Islands (2008)
- Reefer with Daddy Kev as Reefer (2008)
- Moody Motorcycle with Jim Guthrie as Human Highway (2008)
- Vapours as Islands (2009)
- Out of Love with Honus Honus & Joe Plummer as Mister Heavenly (2011)
- I Am an Attic solo album as Nick Diamonds (2011)
- A Sleep & A Forgetting as Islands (2012)
- Ski Mask as Islands (2013)
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- "Nicholas Thorburn Credits". www.allmusic.com. Allmusic. Retrieved 6 December 2011.
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- Jim Withington (12 July 2007). "Up & Coming". The Portland Mercury. Retrieved 30 December 2007.
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- CHARTattack, Staff (22 August 2005). "Sum 41, The Arcade Fire And Beck Collaborate On Anti-Halloween Single". Chart (Toronto: Chart Communications). chartattack.com. ISSN 1198-7235. Retrieved 30 December 2007.
- Katie Hasty (21 August 2007). "Les Savy Fav Thinks Big On First Album Since '01". Billboard. Retrieved 30 December 2007.
- Weiss, Evan (20 October 2009). "Music: "Vapours" by Islands". theartssection.com. The Arts Section (blog). Retrieved 20 October 2009.
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- Michaels, Sean (2 December 2010). "Michael Cera joins real-life indie band". The Guardian (London: Guardian News and Media). guardian.co.uk. ISSN 0261-3077. OCLC 60623878.
- Review: Everyday Is Like Sunday - Exclaim!