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"You know, I honestly can't remember how old I was when I started playing guitar.......I think I was around 6 or 7 years old", muses Dennis when asked when it all began. "I do remember though, that I was gigging at 11 years old", he says as he produces a photo from his scrap book.

The photo was taken at a grade 6 public school concert that Dennis' (far right) and his band played for,"We played a
set of 7 Kiss songs from the 'Kiss Alive' album....to a completely stunned audience. The Principal of the school was a Catholic Nun and had asked the drummer (a classmate) and I to come in with our band and play some songs for the graduating class.......she was expecting two guys with harmonicas and acoustic guitars......I think we disrupted the whole school that day".
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Dennis finished out his teens playing in various bands performing cover songs and touring the local club circuit, then at age 21 he had an epiphany which led him to desire something more original musically. So at 21 he left his band and spent the next couple of years writing songs as well as honing his skills as a guitar player.

By the Winter of 1988, Dennis had written an album's worth of material with a local singer/songwriter Andy Lyon. Together they recorded a 5 song demo which he had shopped to record labels in both Canada and in the U.S. under the band name Angelica, "I still have all of the rejection letters from the labels that replied negatively.....some of them are pretty funny. One that comes to mind is the letter from CBS Records in Canada that looked like it had been kicking around on the production floor for a while.....it's a 100th generation photocopied form letter that's really crooked on the page."

Of the several offers presented, Dennis settled on and signed with Frontline Music Group (FMG) out of Southern California, on their subsidery metal label Intense Records. "From 1989 to 1992 I wrote and produced four albums for Intense Records with various singers. The entire deal basically turned into a studio project for me. I had tried to put a band together to support the second and third records, but the pieces just weren't in place for something on an international scale."
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"I had become a little burnt out creatively having done 4 albums back to back, not to mention being slightly discouraged, given the limitations of the record deal I had, so I decided that a temporary change was as good as a rest"

With his obligations to FMG fulfilled, Dennis decided to take a break from the industry and enrolled in a local college to pursue his growing interest in electronics. "My 4-track had broken one day so I opened it up and was immediately intrigued by all of the electronic components. It wasn't long after that that I enrolled........". Just into his first year and while on Christmas break, Dennis got a call from a friend who asked if he'd be interested in a gig as a lead guitarist for Michael Sweet formerly of Stryper. After much deliberation Dennis finally decided to take the offer and took a leave from college, "The whole time I was making Angelica records I waited for an opportunity like this......how could I pass it up?", and with that he left once again for California to start rehearsals for a North American Tour.

Dennis played the first leg of the tour then returned to school, "...Mike's management didn't want to have to deal with all of the immigration red tape, so they decided to use an American player for the rest of the tour......so I went back to finish my schooling, graduated and entered into the high tech workforce".

Having laid down music for a couple of years he started to get the itch to write and record again, "I didn't play guitar much for a couple of years......then I picked up my Jackson one day, the strings were like barbwire they were so corroded, and realized just how much I really missed it". It wasn't long after that that Dennis put together plans to build his home studio. "The whole plan for my studio really snowballed......I mean REALLY snowballed. I had originally planned to just buy the Akai DPS 24 which was a self contained mixer/multi-track recorder, but Akai kept pushing back the release date. So I started thinking that if I was going to spent $10G's, why not spend $20G's.....then it was, if I'm gonna spend $20G's why not $30G's?....and so on....". Not wanting to have to rely upon a record company's money before getting himself back into the studio, Dennis built a 72 channel, 24 track fully automated digital recording facility based around the Mackie d8b console and the HDR24/96 digital multi-track recorder in his house, "It's was two years in the making, but DRC Music Productions has been up and running for a year and an half now".

In January 2002 with another album's worth of material in hand, Dennis started to seek out members for his new band Cynical Limit. By December 2002 the lineup was complete, "I was very determined this time around to make sure that all the members were local....or at least Canadian. By August I had a drummer (Phil Elliott) and bass player (Bob Pallen) and that was enough to start recording bed tracks". The band started production in August and wrapped up all of the music by mid October. The search for the singer was still ongoing and Dennis was thinking that they might have to start looking in the U.S., "Finding a good singer has always been my Achilles Heel.......we auditioned quite a few people from August to December....it was getting discouraging. Then I got a call from a longtime friend (Jeff Martel) who told me that he heard through the grapevine that I was looking for a singer and that he wanted to audition.....so we set a date for December 14th....the rest is history in the making".

Cynical Limit is currently finishing up production on their debut album and are planning a spring 2003 release date.


 
   

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