Friday, 8 January 2010

Ten for '10: The Besnard Lakes

Inevitably, as another musical year dawns, we begin to move from the favourites that kept us company the previous 364 days and speculate at which bands might fuel our fire during the next 12 months. 

Canada provides fertile soil for a variety of enchanting indie flora and fauna, not least in the form of Montreal's The Besnard Lakes.

Many of the artists looked at thus far have been those on their debut album, just beginning their journey to the ears of the masses. The Besnard Lakes are further into the trip, releasing their sophomore Jagjaguwar effort this year. 'Trip' being the operative word, as their particular brand of progressive indie is laced with a mesmerising psychedelic streak. The newest track Albatross signals that none of this element has been lost on the next LP, The Besnard Lakes Are The Roaring Night.

MP3: The Besnard Lakes - Albatross
Taken from the forthcoming album The Besnard Lakes Are The Roaring Night, out March

MP3: The Besnard LakesAnd You Lied To Me
Taken from their debut album The Besnard Lakes Are The Dark Horse, out now

Buy it at Insound!

A slow-burning song, Albatross has a vintage charm beyond the alternately crashing and dream-like guitars. Mooted as a darker album than their first, this isn't something that comes across immediately on this track. It certainly does retain, however, the rapturous, weaving sound so associated with that album. The band have an uncanny ability to linger on a certain riff, lyric, or harmony without it ever getting tiresome. In actual fact, it's one of their most unique charms that they can accomplish this across 6 or 7 minutes and still have the listener come away humming the melody as if it were a 3 minute pop ditty. 

From the initial press blurbs, it sounds as though there are a few concepts at work behind both releases and perhaps linking them in abstract ways. Along with their visceral art work and the density of the music, there will be a lot to dig into come the release in March. Though they attracted no little critical interest first time around, it would be a pleasure to see them gaining a wider audience for their exploits with this release.

Even more so, if they travel down the darkened path hinted at by the album's evocative title.

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