New Release: Marine Dream – “Marine Dreams”

New Release: Marine Dream – “Marine Dreams”

December 5, 2011 | Posted in: Marine Dreams 0


Marine Dreams is a record of modern pop songs written by former Attack in Black bassist, songwriter, and lyrical contributor Ian Kehoe. A debut of precise athletic force, Marine Dreams serves as a testament to the idea of songwriting as a craft by unexpectedly destroying the expectations we have in songs. So strange and unlikely is the emotional space it occupies, Marine Dreams appropriates the sound and scope of bubble gum pop songs if Werner Herzog wrote bubble gum pop songs. These songs are grandiose and intricate in the midst of their seemingly idiotic simplicity. Two drum kits. Dreams of Greece. Violent reactions. Astral planes. Rock and Roll music.

The album was recorded in two sessions in Welland, Ont at the home studio of Daniel and Ian Romano with musical contributions from all former Attack in Black members.

New Release: Daniel Romano – “Sleep Beneath the Willow”

New Release: Daniel Romano – “Sleep Beneath the Willow”

December 3, 2011 | Posted in: Daniel Romano 0

This album was recorded stereophonically. The vocals were reproduced through a Sennheiser 421 microphone; rhythm, Royer 121; piano and organ, Royer 121, violin, Royer 121; and guitars, Royer 121. The session was first recorded on Ampex audio tape at 15 inches per second.

Sleep Beneath the Willow mixes timeless songwriting with late ’60s AM country arrangements baring the influence of artists such as Lee Hazelwood and Wichita Lineman/Galveston era Glen Campbell. The album is constructed around flourishes of fiddle, honky-tonk guitar, banjo, and sweeping harmonies courtesy of a trio of Toronto singers; Misha Bower (Bruce Peninsula), Tamara Lindeman
(The Weather Station) and Lisa Bozikovic. The songs tell stories of regret, sorrow, love, and yearning; the stuff of life. They tell of ex-wives, bluebirds, and finding the strength to do the right and proper thing. It’s a big, warm sound.

Approaching his music like a true craftsman, Daniel produced, engineered, and performed the majority of the instruments on Sleep Beneath the Willow. It was recored to two inch tape in his home studio in Welland, ON.

New Release: Shotgun Jimmie – “Transistor Sister”

New Release: Shotgun Jimmie – “Transistor Sister”

December 2, 2011 | Posted in: Shotgun Jimmie 0

World traveler, collaborator, under-dog, hard-working man, Shotgun Jimmie stakes his claim for the hearts and minds of millions with Transistor Sister. A much anticipated addition to a growing discography, following the solo debut The Onlys (Delorean) in 2007 (featuring the CBC Radio 3 and college radio chart-topping single “Bedhead”), and the much loved Attack in Black backed Still Jimmie (You’ve Changed) in 2009, Transistor Sister sounds a new confidence in Shotgun Jimmie, a confidence earned by the mile, by train or by busted up mini-van, on countless Canadian crossings and a couple of recent tours overseas.

Transistor Sister was written on tour in Europe and you can hear Jimmie in this new environment, telling the people he meets about back home, what it looks like, what falling in love there feels like, how we think about things like songs, and peace, and love. It’s a good way to see the world; packing light, a bunch of two minute blasts of pop perfection (“Late Last Year,” “Suzy,” “Transistor Sister”), a few all out anthemic rock hits (“King of Kreuzberg,” “Swamp Magic,” “Peace and Love”), and a couple of stellar collaborators: Ryan Peters of Ladyhawk and Lightning Dust on the drums and harmonies, and Jay Baird of the Feist live band and Do Make Say Think on bass and flute.

Transistor Sister is also the first Shotgun Jimmie album recorded in a fully operational professional studio, at Riverport NS’s The Confidence Lodge by Diego Medina, but it maintains the experimentation and spontaneous sense of creation of the best home recordings. Run down the stairs, slamming doors, grab a weed whacker from the shed and mic it through a wah pedal. It just sounds better doing it than it has before. The album was tracked and mixed in a couple of weeks at the end of August 2010, hurricane season, as the unusually warm waters off the south shore crashed and waves broke.

New Release: The Weather Station – “All of It Was Mine”

New Release: The Weather Station – “All of It Was Mine”

June 24, 2011 | Posted in: The Weather Station 0

This album was recorded stereophonically. The vocals were reproduced through a Royer 122 Microphone; rhythm, Royer 121; violin, apex 210; and guitars, Royer 121, Sennheiser 421. The session was recorded in December 2010.

At first glance, the second record by The Weather Station is a humble thing, gentle, warm. The elements are simple, finger-picked acoustics and three part harmonies, an unexpected snare drum, a stray electric guitar – the very opposite of songwriter Tamara Lindeman’s first record, the painstakingly arranged and darkly expansive The Line. And yet, All of it Was Mine is a record that appeared stubbornly.

She’d entered a studio, attempting a follow-up but was getting nowhere. Trying to do too much to the songs, trying to make them into something they weren’t. So, she took up Daniel Romano on his long-standing offer to record a few demos at his home studio in Welland, ON. The two played the songs one by one, arranging on the spot, recording with a couple of ribbon mics to a digital 8 track. From time to time, the incomparable Misha Bower (Tamara’s bandmate in Bruce Peninsula) came downstairs to sing harmonies.

Freed of expectation and ambition, safe in the hands of friends, the songs revealed themselves as folk songs, and it started to come easy. A good record is all timing, and this one was caught at just the right moment – the moment when a musician sets aside old habits and expectations, strips away the excess and finally just gets to the guts of the matter. In a matter of days, studio album abandoned, there was the record.

Lindeman’s lyrics stay close to home, detailing a creaking house in disrepair, a quiet side street, a seemingly idyllic summer; but also the heartache that comes in slyly, inexorably, as it always does, softly, like the moths that attack the flour. It’s beautiful, certainly, unabashedly so, but unsettled, all creeping nature, dirt and sweetness, accusation and acceptance. Short, small in scope, and curiously complete. Ten songs doing nothing more than speaking for themselves, quietly perhaps, but with grace, not one word out of place.

Polaris Prize Longlist

June 20, 2011 | Posted in: Daniel Romano, News, Shotgun Jimmie 0

Congratulations to Shotgun Jimmie and Daniel Romano – Transistor Sister and Sleep Beneath the Willow have been named to the 2011 Polaris Prize long list! And also to our good pals Frederick Squire (of Daniel, Fred, and Julie) and the Luyas for their nominations. We couldn’t be any happier, and have got all available fingers crossed for an invite to the party – because we like parties.

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