This is an mp3 blog attempting to document the gross amount of music I listen to. About once a day, I'll post something I like. If you're a copyright holder on anything I host, get in touch, and we'll settle things in a steel cage instead of a courtroom.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The Weakerthans - or - more Canadian goodness for your ears

From my list of good Canadian rock bands, I can't believe I left out the Weakerthans! In an effort to correct that, I offer you this humble posting in the the hopes that you get turned onto one of the best bands of this modern age.

Back in the early 90's, anarcho thrash-punk band Propagandhi was looking for a new bassist after their second one had departed. I guess it seemed like a good idea at the time to hire a bookish, poetic guy named John Samson, but in retrospect, it seems a little weird. (Just see the Propagandhi song "Showdown," and you'll get an idea of what I'm talking about.) Anyway, he amicably left the band after their second album to write and start a publishing company.

In 1997, he started the Weakerthans as an outlet for some of the songs he was writing. Their debut album, Fallow, was released to positive reviews on his former bandmates' new label, G7 Welcoming Committee. Three years' time saw the release of the astounding Left and Leaving, one of my favorite records of all time. Punk-influenced, melancholic, mournful, folky, introspective, and heart-rending all in one, Samson's trembling singing voice gives even the simplest imagery and observation unbelievable weight. It's a perfect solo road trip album, soundtracking a long drive for someone with everything to think about.

2003's Reconstruction Site, released on mega-indie Epitaph, spit-shined the production and saw the band move in a more streamlined direction, but it was still better than the records most of their peers are putting out. It also got them on the radio in their home country, and stands as their best-seller. They've yet to release a follow-up, with Samson saying it takes him a long time to write songs. The other three members of the band moonlighted as Greg Graffin's backing band on his last solo album, and Samson himself has been involved with projects with his wife, fellow musician Christine Fellows. I'm pulling for a 2007 release, but quality's always worth waiting for, kids.

Confessions of a Futon Revolutionist:

Letter of Resignation:

Everything Must Go!:


This a Fire Door, Never Leave Open:

Plea From a Cat Named Virtue:

One Great City!:


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