Album of the week: Ada Lea – what we say in private

Ada Lea’s music is like textures on a quilt, with different fabrics all meshing into one. On her debut indie rock album, “what we say in private,” released on Saddle Creek, Ada Lea is musician-come-property-developer treating each song like a house bought on the cheap, stripping it out entirely and rebuilding it from the ground […]

Album of the week: Joanna Sternberg – Then I Try Some More

Joanna Sternberg is a life saver. It was a quality they discerned in Elliot Smith when hearing him for the first time, a moment that inspired the then freelance musician to make the step centre-stage, writing and performing their own songs. A self-drawn portrait of their bedroom adorns the front cover and that’s indicative of […]

Track by track: Necking

Necking’s debut album ‘Cut Your Teeth’ was borne out of a necessity to start again. Three of the Vancouver quarter went through break-ups during the making of ‘Cut Your Teeth,’ turning to the band not only to get out all that indignation but also as an essential support mechanism. “The band got me out of […]

Album of the week: Erin Durant – Islands

On album opener ‘Rising Sun,’ Brooklyn-based singer Erin Durant casually sings “I’m going far / I’m going wide” in her balm-like voice. Those words are the mantra of ‘Islands,’ a wide-ranging exploration of lands and life. The music itself may be small-town and rooted in the traditions of the south, but its scale is immeasurable. […]

Album of the week: Palehound – Black Friday

Ellen Kempner’s music has been a source of comfort to me for nearly half a decade now. Having first seen her back in 2016, with some band called Amber Arcades supporting, Kempner’s music has barely left my side, helping me navigate times both light and dark. From the moment Kempner sung ‘You made beauty a […]

Album of the Week: Christelle Bofale – Swim Team

In ‘Swim Team’, Congo-American songwriter Christelle Bofale has generated an all-consuming swirl. Rather than journeying from one destination to another, ‘Swim Team’ quite simply circles, its circuitous structures representing steam rising in the distance or the flow of a river changing directions as its water clashes against rocks. Bofale puts this formless, malleable flow down […]

Album of the Week: Slingshot Dakota – Heavy Banding

As Lorde reaches the halfway point of her show, just before she plays ‘Liability’, she takes a pew and launches into a huge speech: “It was such a simple thing, a million people had been in that situation before me, had been sitting in the back of a taxi, listening to a sad song, crying […]