Rock Plaza Central
Vish Khanna, Exclaim Magazine
“If [Are We Not Horses] doesn't elevate [Eaton] to the ranks of [Toronto’s] more celebrated songwriters, then it'll be an oddly fitting fate for a musician who embraces his underdog status like it was a religion. ”
– Stuart Berman, Eye Weekly,
“Just beyond the reach of verbs and adjectives … surefooted and evocative, Are We Not Horses remains accessible, supremely affecting, and unique. 8.4 / 10”
– Stephen M. Deusner, Pitchfork
“There is a grandeur, a timeless beauty to the songs … and while the swelling collective of multi-instrumentalists has in recent years gone to the rule from the exception, Rock Plaza Central's sincere appreciation for music and themes gone by add a depth to their melancholy that is all too rare.”
– Allan Wigney, Ottawa Sun
“This record really is a massive achievement - it all hangs together brilliantly with moments of orchestrated chaos and passages of quiet beauty. 8 / 10”
– Now Magazine
Rock Plaza Central is a seven-piece Toronto-based racket inspired by carnival sideshows and dustbowl ballads, playing with the confused jubilation of a blind-drunk Salvation Army band. Their critically acclaimed third LP Are We Not Horses is now available through the blossoming Outside Music Label.
In 2003, Chris Eaton, author of The Inactivist and The Grammar Architect (Insomniac Press), booked a show at Toronto’s fabled Sneaky Dee’s. Without anything but his guitar and some songs ideas, he asked members of the other bands on the bill to join him on stage with old friend Donald Murray and drummer Blake Howard. Without even knowing each other’s names, something clicked. Two weeks later, they were in the studio.
The results of that session were The World Was Hell To Us. Recorded in two days in August 2003 at Andy Magoffin’s House of Miracles studio in London, the record is mostly first takes and completely unrehearsed. Several songs were written on the studio floor and recorded immediately.
World Was Hell To Us was about a war between humans and angels that left the world in a state of constant loneliness. Are We Not Horses, conversely, is an album of hope, told through the eyes of the six-legged robotic horses caught in between. Convinced they are real horses, and confused about their part in the earlier destruction, theirs is a story of confession, redemption and the triumph of happiness over loneliness. The album was produced by Dale Morningstar and recorded at The Gas Station on Toronto Island, and featuring a Grade 3 class on backing vocals.