Our Lady Peace – Life

The first Our Lady Peace song I heard was Superman’s Dead, and, at least at first, I didn’t like it that much. It wasn’t until they released Spiritual Machines, their fourth studio album, that I started to take them seriously. I’m glad that happened because otherwise I would have missed out on some great music from these gods of Canada’s alternative rock scene. The band has just released a remastered edition of this double-platinum certified album to celebrate its 20th anniversary, reason for which I decided to feature one of its best songs as this week’s #ThrowbackThursday entry.

All things being equal, I would probably have chosen Right Behind You (Mafia) for this entry, but Life is just as good and has a beautiful message that is more valid than ever today; message that OLP managed to transmit quite well on the music video (see below). Sure, life can be messed up sometimes but everybody is dealing with some issue, one way or another. We just have to keep moving on. Call me crazy, but I think this song comes in handy this year.

By the way, Our Lady Peace announced that they’re working on a follow-up to Spiritual Machines and plan to release it next year. Color me intrigued.

Featured on the following mixtapes:

Forest Blakk – If You Love Her

I think one of the hardest things for a songwriter to do is to write beautiful romantic songs that aren’t cheesy. Seriously, how many are there that don’t say things like “I’ll die for you” or “I can’t live without you”? Not that many. Luckily, that list is slightly bigger now with the addition of this new song from Canadian singer/songwriter Forest Blakk: If You Love Her. It is a nice song with great vocals and a good melody, but what really sets it apart, I think, are its lyrics.

I discovered Forest Blakk two years ago when Apple Music recommended its song Tread Lightly to me. He describes his style as urban folk, mixing the tranquility of folk music with the chaotic rhythm of a city. He’s been releasing his songs to streaming platforms just since 2018 but at a steady pace, so he got a good number of singles out already. Check them out when you feel thirsty for new music.

For the time being, listen to this beautiful song here.

Featured on the following mixtapes:

Rough Gentlemen – Black Gold

It is not precisely a secret that by adding contrast between different sections of a song –particularly, between the verses and the chorus–, the resulting songs will be more interesting. This is what makes Come Together so great! Yet, plenty of songwriters make the mistake of having a chorus that sounds too similar to the rest of the piece. Luckily, that wasn’t the case for Rough Gentlement, a four-piece rock band from Canada, with their latest single, Black Gold. A banger with an infectious chorus made even better by the high contrast it has with the rest of the tune.

After starting in 2017, the Canadian band has garnered a following in Quebec and this year released this new single in preparation for a future EP. Black Gold is an energetic rock inspired by the various crises the world has gone through this year and how we just have to keep marching on. Not only it is a catchy track, it also has meaning. Check it out below!

Featured on the following mixtapes:

Lizzy & the Fanatics – Les fleurs mortes

Lizzy & the Fanatics is a dream pop band from Montreal, Canada, that after playing shows around the region for three years, released last month a bilingual EP with 6 indie pop tracks that taste like candy from your childhood. You can sense some 80s and 90s vibe on the record as well with its nostalgic synths and pastel color melodies.

Even though I don’t speak French (I know barely enough to understand that the name of the song featured here means “dead flowers”), I didn’t have to in order to connect with the song being highlighted here: Les fleur mortes. Music is universal, after all. However, rest assured, the EP has also 4 tracks in English that are just as good. Obviously, it is a matter of personal taste, but if you like dreamy 80s flavored indie pop, Lizzy & the Fanatics will be right up your alley.

‘‘I wrote Les fleurs mortes while riding my bike in

the dead of November last year, while missing the

summer. The song is about nostalgia; how it can

simultaneously make you feel the sad feelings of

losing something from the past, at the same time

as feeling content of remembering something

that was good. I find that this ambivalence of

feeling is a bit like drying dead flowers, preserving

the memory of something nice.’’

Lysanne Picard (Lizzy)

Featured on the following mixtapes:

The Strumbellas – I’ll Wait

Canadian band The Strumbellas had a moderate hit a few years ago with their song, Spirits, yet they remained relatively unknown to the casual listener. Last year, they returned with their fourth album, Rattlesnakes, which included the anthemic folk single you can find below. If you haven’t listened to it yet, you must do it now because its infectiously uplifting melody will put a smile on your face and make you sing-along.

I’ll wait became an instant musical crush for me the first time I heard it. I hope it does the same for you.

Featured on the following mixtapes: