The Weakerthans have completed work on their strongly anticipated fourth studio disc, Reunion Tour. Slated for a September 25th, 2007 release through Anti-, the set was crafted among “the finest slaughterhouses, industrial sites and sub-degree temperatures” its Winnipeg, Manitoba hometown has to offer.
Again partnering with Ian Burtan, who produced 2003’s Reconstruction Site, The Weakerthans deliver their strongest song-cycle yet. Launched with the quirky, memorable rocker “Civil Twilight,” the charms of Reunion Tour quickly become evident on the rollicking “Relative Surplus Value,” the glistening, evocative indie pop of “Night Windows” and the endearing, lease-ending balladry of “Sun In An Empty Room.”
Culled from the five years worth of material accumulated since the completion of Reconstruction Site, The Weakerthans build on the strengths of that critically-lauded effort, delivering its deepest and most heartfelt record yet. And from the warm, pensive tone of “Virtue the Cat Explains Here Departure” to the reflective artful approach of the title track – replete with a steady pulse of flute and horns – Reunion Tour promises to be the indie rock record of 2007’s fourth quarter.
“This record is looking a little less conceptual and more like a collection of songs and stories,” explains guitarist Stephen Carroll. “We are all very excited about it. Having brought Ian in to help complete the record has been great, as we had been staring at most of the songs for so long that it was hard for us to see their potential. Since we decided to record the album, we have gained a lot of momentum and the fragmented parts are really coming together well.”
The Weakerthans have long been championed for fusing the best elements of punk, rock, alt-country and folk with distinct vocals and poetic lyrics. Touted by The Toronto Sun as “rich in detailed craftsmanship, with plenty of unsettling textures, daring experiments and recurring lyrical and melodic imagery,” Playboy dubbed them, “Canada’s bona-fide rock and roll poet laureates.”
Formed in 1997 in Winnipeg, when former Propagandhi bassist John K. Sampson turned guitarist/frontman aligned with drummer Jason Tait and original bassist John P. Sutton, The Weakerthans released two discs, Fallow (1997) and Left and Leaving (2000), for G7 Welcoming Committee Records. Carroll came on board for the latter, with the band inking to Anti-/Epitaph for Reconstruction Site. When Sutton exited in August 2004, he was replaced by Greg Smith.
A 2005 Chart Magazine reader’s poll named Left and Leaving one of the ten best Canadian albums of all time. In 2006, the band – sans Samson – played on Cold As The Clay, the second solo album from Bad Religion’s Greg Graffin. In addition to his efforts with The Weakerthans, Tait has performed as part of Canadian indie rock supergroup Broken Social Scene and is featured on its 2005 self-titled third studio album.
The full track listing for Reunion Tour is as follows:
1. Civil Twilight 2. Hymn of the Medical Oddity 3. Relative Surplus Value 4. Tournament of Hearts 5. Virtute the Cat Explains Her Departure 6. Elegy for Gump Worsley 7. Sun in an Empty Room 8. Night Windows 9. Bigfoot! 10. Reunion Tour 11. Utilities
For more information on The Weakerthans, contact Hilary Villa: Hilary@epitaph.com