Madame Psychosis is a five-piece indie rock/soul band from Toronto that took shape over several years. It started with guitar player and songwriter Bret McCaffrey, and drummer Jaina Tharakan, who both played in the band Howl Your Heart Out. When that band came to an end they decided to continue playing together as a duo until they could recruit new members.
Bass player Giovanni Paola joined the band in November of 2014 after a drunken conversation at a wedding resulted in an unlikely jam session that included Bret, Jaina, Gio and friend of the band Tara-Lee. It was all just for fun, but after finding out Bret and Jaina needed a bass player, Gio jumped at the opportunity and auditioned with them.
A year went by, but still no luck with a singer that would commit to the band. That was until Michelle Mondesir came into the fold in early 2016 after connecting with Jaina. Michelle instantly left her mark with her incredible voice, and it was at this point that the band took on the name “Madame Psychosis”. The band played a few gigs over the summer, but felt they needed another layer to their sound.
Meet Rene Ip, a dynamic guitar player who was friends with Michelle and joined the band just weeks after moving to Toronto from Ottawa. It only took Rene and the rest of the band a few practices before they were ready to play their first band competition at Revival Bar – and they won.
After playing their biggest show yet at the legendary Opera House, and cracking Alan Cross’ top 11 playlist for the song ‘Space Motorcycle’, the band continues to play shows around Toronto in support of their debut album, which was released on June 16th, 2017. You can find the album on Spotify, Apple Music/iTunes and Google Play.
Band members include:
- Michelle Mondesir – Vocals
- Jaina Tharakan – Drums, Backup Vocals
- Bret McCaffrey – Guitar
- Rene Ip – Guitar
- Giovanni Paola – Bass
Special thanks to the Rehearsal Factory for giving us a space where we can do what we love.
Photo credit: Tomas B Photography