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Canadian Tuxedo

Vancougar

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Album Review

The second LP from all-female foursome Vancougar demonstrates that the strength of their debut album, Losin' It!, was no fluke. While Losin' It!, recorded in 2005 and finally released in 2007, captured the group's scrappy blend of pop, punk, and garage sounds with a joyous immediacy, 2008's Canadian Tuxedo is every bit as passionate but boasts a dash more polish and enough chops to make their music sound significantly more potent in the second round. Eden Fineday's guitar and Megan Johnson's keyboards reveal a lot more backbone and a bit more technical accomplishment here, while the group's harmonies add a gloss to the tunes that's smooth but not slick and drummer CC Rose and bassist Becca Stewart get the job done with enthusiasm and not too much fuss. But the biggest improvement comes in Vancougar's songwriting; their melodic sense was already strong, but their lyrical skills have jumped a grade or two, and their tales of some nameless stoner ("Philadelphia"), a greedy turncoat in love ("[I Hope Your] Money [Keeps You Warm]"), the onset of adult responsibility ("Let It Go"), and long-distance relationships ("Phone Calls") crackle with understated wit and emotional force, while even standard-issue gripes about cars and vanity carry more weight than you would expect. Vancougar haven't set out to dramatically overhaul their formula on Canadian Tuxedo, but they've clearly improved on nearly every level, and this has the spunk, the energy, and the hooks to make a believer out of anyone; this is punk-leaning pop at its most purely enjoyable.

Biography

Formed: 2003 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Cana

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s

Equally inspired by classic punk and retro girl group pop, Vancouver's Vancougar was formed in 2003 by vocalist/guitarist Eden Fineday, bassist Becca Stewart, keyboardist Megan Johnson, and drummer CC Rose, also of the Pink Mountaintops. The following year, the group self-released a demo CD that ended up garnering significant airplay on college radio stations throughout Canada, as well as acclaim from local press and radio. This success led them to record at Vancouver's Hive Creative Labs studio,...
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Canadian Tuxedo, Vancougar
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