Today, Canadian indie-rock royalty, Sloan are excited to kick-off their mighty return with their new song, “The Day Will Be Mine.” The track is released as part of the band’s announcement of their 12th studio album appropriately titled Sloan 12.
Sloan are one of the rare bands to make it to their 12th album with all four original members who are equally prolific songwriters and all still working at the top of their respective games, sounding utterly ageless in the process. Sloan 12 includes three songs written by each member with the band being eager to initiate more creative cross-pollination in their songwriting. Each of the four individuals contribute unique qualities that play into their core strengths: Patrick Pentland with the soaring rock anthems, Chris Murphy with the playful, participatory sing-alongs, Jay Ferguson with the jaunty prog-pop gems, and Andrew Scott with the whimsical innerspace explorations. In comparing their last album Commonwealth (2014) Ferguson says, “That album was more of everyone retreating to corners to produce and sequence a side of their own material, this one would potentially have more collaboration than usual.” While the 12 songs on Sloan 12 greatly emphasize each member’s distinct personality, they’re all ultimately united by their lean economy and punchy precision.
Produced by Richard Swift (Foxygen, The Shins), Uncle, Duke & The Chief is a record less concerned with what sounds hip than what feels good. In the Ruffians’ case that meant shedding some of their more arty influences (the Pixies, Talking Heads) and reconnecting with the sounds they first heard on their parents’ turntables as kids: Buddy Holly, The Everly Brothers, and pre-psychedelic Beatles. “It’s about going back to the deepest, most satisfying itch to scratch,” says lead singer Luke Lalonde. And in doing so, the album takes you back to a time when the Ruffians sounded less like a band and more like a gang, raising a wild ruckus and speaking in telepathic tongues.
Dave and Serge Bielanko have led Marah through lots of changes since their alt-country garage band debuted in 1998. Angels and devils, detox and drink, stray dogs and distant loves, New York and Spain: Angels Of Destruction! presents enough recurring and unifying details to qualify as a song cycle or thematic opus. But those touches are for lyrics-obsessives. Mostly, Angels just rocks.
Recorded in the basement of Dallas and Travis’ parents’ home north of Toronto over the winter of 2015, the familiar surroundings and lack of distractions resulted in a consistent feel, despite the eclecticism at the heart of The Sadies sound. The psych-folk flourishes on tracks such as “Riverview Fog” are no mere homage; this is the sound of our inscrutable world, and how we manage to survive in it. Kurt Vile appears on “Easy (Like Walking).” The Sadies are a band that fans cling to like a closely guarded secret, with each new release fulfilling the promise to reach further, for all of our sakes, not just their own. With Northern Passages, the time has come to make room for more on this wild acid-folk-country-punk trip, and trust me, we’ll be better off because of it.