Contest:: Win 2tix to see The Sadies & Darker Circles review

A career. Considering that most people get into music long before the realization that a steady pay cheque is a basic requirement to survival, it’s hard to imagine the Good brothers starting a band and working on that now trademark blend of psych, country, surf and straight up rock hoping to make a living from the experience. But 12 years, an ever growing catalog of discs, countless impressive collaborations and one of Canada’s most smoking live shows later, that’s exactly what The Sadies have and why the quartet is an underrated Canadian musical institution.


It almost feels like any commentary critics offer up should be pushing for some sort of lifetime achievement award, hoping to give the band a fraction of the credit they deserve.  The thing is with the constant flux of people The Sadies work with and the subtle shifts in sound, it becomes impossible to look back. Sure, when you hear a Sadies song, you know it is a Sadies song, but looking at their career arc from the start to where they are know is fairly remarkable.


Case in point, when Darker Circles is released, long time fans are going to be surprised by how the vocals have been pushed forward in the mix and force you to pay attention to the weight and despair from which the the songs grew. Even though the band revisits the focused sound I took from Favourite Colours and at times paints with the same orange and browns hues, the larger influences are the black, grey and the dark purples that hide our deepest thoughts and most private secrets.


Darker Circles starts with some of the bigger songs; leading off with the huge atmospheric Another Year Again and letting the chaotic Another Day Again hit third - but really the LP is a restrained effort, stripping back most of the extra layers. Instead of hitting the listener with loose, cranked up country fried rockers, the band focuses on setting a mood that drives the record forward, forcing you to absorb the alienation. The songs come from the perspective of a tormented soul, but even as the darkest clouds roll in, tasteful flourishes - the harmonies and mandolin on Tell What I Said - and energy give you the glimpse of hope you need to keep going and they lighten the load with fiery, finger picked country melodies like Postcards, Idle Tomorrows (a track that could easily sneak into a Deep Dark Woods set) and Violet and Jeffrey Lee.


I don’t know if it’s the comfort they had working with Gary Louris again or the simple desire to keep pushing themselves, but Darker Circles finds the band offering their strongest collection of narratives and willing to jump without the safety net of huge guitar riffs and spirited instrumentals (the inspired album closer is the only one). It’s hard to tell people unfamiliar with The Sadies why they are so important to the Canadian music scene, but this record is another wrinkle that lets fans both new and old fall in love with the legends. Is it the blue-collar feel the band thrives on - non-stop tours, collaborations and new material - or the dedication and talent they emit every time they pick up their instruments? I’m not sure, but these guys somehow give us something new each and every time out but are still the most consistent outfit I know.


A Sadies show is one not to be missed, and thanks to the good people at Sonic Entertainment we have (3) sets of tickets to give away. All you have to do is leave us a comment with your contact info, or drop us an email [herohill AT gmail DOT COM] and keep those fingers crossed. Of course, it couldn’t hurt to throw this up on your twitterz or buy one of herohill’s snazzy shirts, but those aren’t requirements.


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MP3:: The Sadies - Another Year Again

Tags: The Sadies

This entry was posted on Monday, May 10th, 2010 at 9:57 am and is filed under 2010, Best-of '10, Canada, Halifax, Music, News, Reviews, Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

5 Responses to “Contest:: Win 2tix to see The Sadies & Darker Circles review”

Music Laura May 10th, 2010 at 11:28 am

The Sadies played the little ol’ Danube Folk Festival back in the early 2000s at the Garrison Grounds and I haven’t been the same since…

Where Can I Find Carne Asada Albuquerque? | Southwestern Home Decor May 10th, 2010 at 7:08 pm

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Aaron May 11th, 2010 at 11:14 am

it will cool to see them at sappyfest too

twiggs May 17th, 2010 at 9:05 pm

I love the sadies, such amazing Canadian Talents!

Nathan May 17th, 2010 at 9:09 pm

Awesome! About time!

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