With their new record Returning Current set to hit stores tomorrow, Toronto-Los Angeles-based duo Snowblink bring their dreamy indie-pop influenced sounds to Moncton’s Plan b Lounge tonight.
With the origins of the band dating back to 2005, the duo’s new album is the highly anticipated follow up to 2012’s Inner Classics, which was released by influential indie label Arts & Crafts.
Recorded throughout the course of a year at a cabin located just north of Toronto, Snowblink’s Daniela Gesundheit says the making of their latest effort was rooted in the art of collaboration and the joys that seemingly go hand-in-hand with exploring new musical territory.
“Because the record was made over the course of a year, we had some breathing room with respect to ensuring we were serving the songs as best as we could,” she says. “A lot of the songs ended up changing and morphing from the original versions that we had come up with, but we are ultimately happy with where each of these songs landed at the end of the day. I feel that going through that year-long process before arriving at these the final versions was a big part of what makes this new record so special to us. It wasn’t about efficiency as much as it was just letting things naturally unfold.”
Helping bring Returning Current to life was an impressive list of musical collaborators, including Feist, arranger Owen Pallett and Barbara Gruska, to name but a few.
The art of collaboration is not a new prospect for the members of Snowblink. In 2012, Feist had invited the duo, along with fellow Canuck musician Aurora, to be her backing band at that year’s Polaris Music Prize Gala. Subsequent years saw the collaboration revisited, culminating in a joint tour between the three acts that hit a number of festivals.
Gesundheit shares that each of the guests featured on Returning Current brought their individual sensibilities and styles to the recording studio, and that neither she or fellow Snowblink principal Dan Goldman were interested in trying to instruct the musicians on what to play.
“Collaborations can sometimes be a tricky thing as sometimes those doors can get cast too widely open and the character of a project can get lost because everyone is afraid to challenge someone else’s ideas. Everyone that appears on this record is someone whose musicality we trust and that we are excited to engage in that musical exchange of ideas,” Gesundheit says.
“Although there were some specific string arrangements that Dan had written that we wanted to keep in tact, we were all about giving everyone as much freedom as they wanted with respect to their parts. Having everyone bring his or her own character and flavour to the song was what we wanted, as opposed to us standing over them telling them what to play. If we were going to do that, we might as well play the parts ourselves.”
What: Snowblink with Paper Beat Scissors
When: Thursday Sept. 8, 9 p.m.
Where: Plan b Lounge, 212 St. George St., Moncton