14 Songs, 52 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Like much of the indie-rock that precedes them, Vancouver’s New Pornographers approach pop music with a sense of unease. Though a shuffling collective of musicians with other musical day jobs – Neko Case has her solo career, Dan Bejar works with Destroyer, and so on – the band centers primarily on the songwriting of A.C. (Carl) Newman. Newman writes indelible hooks, but he obscures them with impenetrable lyrics and carefully dressed arrangements that provide for rewarding headphone listening when they don’t immediately jump out from the speakers. “My Rights Vs. Yours” pummels out of the gate with a bright welcoming disposition, “All The Things That Go To Make Heaven and Earth” fleshes out a garage rock band’s elemental jam and “Mutiny, I Promise You” recalls the fleeting optimism of the Association or Free Design channeled through a modern rock producer. But other tracks, such as “Myriad Harbour” and Entering White Cecilia” (both written by Bejar), work with ornate, layered textures and halting movements that combine male-female vocal lines with mild orchestration and unexpected turns of melody and atmosphere. Complex pop for thinking people.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Like much of the indie-rock that precedes them, Vancouver’s New Pornographers approach pop music with a sense of unease. Though a shuffling collective of musicians with other musical day jobs – Neko Case has her solo career, Dan Bejar works with Destroyer, and so on – the band centers primarily on the songwriting of A.C. (Carl) Newman. Newman writes indelible hooks, but he obscures them with impenetrable lyrics and carefully dressed arrangements that provide for rewarding headphone listening when they don’t immediately jump out from the speakers. “My Rights Vs. Yours” pummels out of the gate with a bright welcoming disposition, “All The Things That Go To Make Heaven and Earth” fleshes out a garage rock band’s elemental jam and “Mutiny, I Promise You” recalls the fleeting optimism of the Association or Free Design channeled through a modern rock producer. But other tracks, such as “Myriad Harbour” and Entering White Cecilia” (both written by Bejar), work with ornate, layered textures and halting movements that combine male-female vocal lines with mild orchestration and unexpected turns of melody and atmosphere. Complex pop for thinking people.

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2:37
6:33
3:28
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About The New Pornographers

The Vancouver indie rock supergroup the New Pornographers feature the talents of Zumpano's Carl Newman, the Evaporators' John Collins, Destroyer's Dan Bejar, cartoonist/filmmaker Blaine Thurier, drummer Fisher Rose, and guest vocalist Neko Case. Newman started the band in 1996 as a lark after releasing Zumpano's Goin' Through Changes; one by one, the other members joined the fold, and the New Pornographers' first official rehearsal took place in 1997. By the following year, the group had completed four songs, but then Case left Vancouver for Chicago, Thurier began work on his film Low Self Esteem Girl, and the other members attended to their other bands and projects. Rose left in 1999, and Limblifter/Age of Electric drummer Kurt Dahle and guitarist Todd Fancey joined the Canadian supergroup. With a solid lineup in tow, the New Pornographers reunited and began recording again in early 2000, completing their debut album, Mass Romantic, in time for a fall release and critical acclaim. Ray Davies joined the band at SXSW in fall 2001, performing the Kinks classic "Starstruck" for the first time ever.

After a brief North American tour, the bandmembers returned to their respective projects by 2002. Bejar recorded with Destroyer, and Case headed out on the road with Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds in support of her second solo album, Blacklisted. Nobody strayed too far, however, for the New Pornographers headed back into the studio before the year's end to work on a follow-up to Mass Romantic. The pop-powered Electric Version, which appeared in spring 2003, marked their first for Matador. Twin Cinema followed in 2005 and garnered a good deal of critical praise, receiving near-perfect rankings from such influential outlets as Rolling Stone and Pitchfork. Bolstered by such a positive reception -- as well as the success of Neko Case's Fox Confessor Brings the Flood in 2006 -- the group went in a mellower direction with 2007's Challengers. In 2009, they contributed the song "Hey, Snow White" to the AIDS Benefit album Dark Was the Night. Shortly after, they released their fifth studio album, Together, which included collaborations with the likes of St. Vincent, Will Sheff, and Zach Condon. After a two-year break, they were included on the Fleetwood Mac tribute compilation album Just Tell Me That You Want Me with the track "Think About Me." It would take another two years for the New Pornographers to announce details of new material; their sixth studio album, entitled Brill Bruisers, was released in August 2014. In 2017, the New Pornographers presented their seventh album, Whiteout Conditions; after a long relationship with Matador Records, it was the group's first release on their own label, Collected Works Records, distributed in the United States by Concord Music Group. ~ Heather Phares & MacKenzie Wilson

  • ORIGIN
    Vancouver, British Columbia, Cana
  • FORMED
    1996

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