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Also known as SoPac
Origin Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Genres Space rock, shoegazing, dream pop, post-rock, instrumental rock
Years active 1997 (1997)–2000 (2000)
Labels Turnbuckle
Associated acts Frihavn
Members Graeme Fleming
Joachim Toelke
Phil Stewart-Bowes

Southpacific (colloquially, "SoPac") was a Canadian space rock band with prominent dream pop/post-rock leanings, originally based in Ottawa.


Its members were multi-instrumentalists Joachim Toelke (primarily electric guitar), Graeme Fleming (primarily drums/percussion), and Phil Stewart-Bowes (primarily bass guitar). The trio formed in 1997, began playing live in 1998, and went on to release two recordings on the Turnbuckle label. (The label was also home to noise rockers Bailter Space). Their self-titled 1998 EP/mini album (also known as 33) was supposedly recorded in a ski chalet. Southpacific soon relocated to the more musically-fertile community of Toronto. Full-length album Constance was recorded in early to mid-1999, and made it to stores in early 2000.


Southpacific's guitar-oriented music was generally psychedelic in nature and filled with reverb, yet at times contained sheets of noise and heavy drumming. Their music was highly recording studio-intensive, using many layers of guitar tracks and subtle samples to create a dense overall sound. This drew the band comparisons to Sonic Youth, early Verve, Slowdive, Mogwai, and My Bloody Valentine. However, only one of the band's songs ("Built To Last") had vocals, making the band favorites of post-rock and ambient music aficionados. The band never released any singles.


They performed at the 1999 Canadian Music Week Festival, and embarked on a cross-Canada tour with indie rockers Tristan Psionic and Crooked Fingers between April and May 2000. The band's last performance was on August 26, 2000, with shoegaze band SIANspheric.


After disbanding in August 2000, Toelke focused on an experimental recording project entitled Frihavn, although only a few song excerpts have surfaced on the Internet. Turnbuckle Records soon folded, leaving the band's albums both out of print. Fleming and Stewart-Bowes are both currently residing in Toronto, while Toelke has been living in Europe since 2003.



EP/ Mini-album[edit]

  • 33 - self-released on 15 August 1998; promo release (green cover) on Turnbuckle, 1999; re-pressed (purple cover) in 2000

External links[edit]