NEWS

EXCITING NEWS: Dan Mangan has today confirmed details of his fourth studio record, ‘Club Meds’ for release via City Slang on January 12th 2015 (Arts & Crafts in Canada & the US)!

The follow up to 2011’s highly acclaimed, award winning ‘Oh Fortune’ sees the Vancouver-based artist return after a few years out of the limelight, this time officially joining forces with his long-time -now integral- band members to play under the moniker Dan Mangan + Blacksmith. Click 'read more' for the lowdown on this exciting new release, but first listen to new track "Vessel" right here!

The name Blacksmith alludes to a craft that takes years to master and marks the start of a new era in Dan Mangan’s work, where the band play a larger role than ever before and the result is their heaviest, most intricate and most fearless work to date.

“I used to be emotionally crippled at times by the need for others to enjoy my work” Mangan says, explaining the palpable sense of freedom in the recordings this time round. “I trust my gut more now, and end up happier with the product.”

The album title, ‘Club Meds’, is a pun on one of the driving lyrical motions of the record; the idea that we’re all on vacation from having to be honest with ourselves – that sometimes it’s easier to medicate than deal with reality.

“CLUB MEDS is about sedation” Mangan writes in the record’s liner notes. “Sedation can be chemical, but not exclusively so. There is a great vacation from actuality going on. Maybe there always has been. It seems like everybody else is already at the party and that life is somehow easier or more fun under the fog.”

During the course of the album’s 11 tracks, the record sees Mangan and his band move from topics such as the use of the word Kitsch (originally a political concept of promoting an ideal aesthetic & glossing over any unacceptable realities), through to painting a picture of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette on top of Wall St tower during the Occupy movement in the track ‘XVI’.

And yet for all its social commentary, ‘Club Meds’ was never intended as a grandiose political record, nor is the outlook overtly cynical; more a touching & thought-provoking collection of deep-rooted sentiments & observations.

As Mangan words it: “As I get older, I get less and less inspired by any art that isn’t inherently political in some measure. I start to wonder what is the point if you’re not saying something?

“I think music (or art in general) allows us to transmit ideas and engage in discourse that would otherwise be limited by language. Words fail us. They fail me all the time. But if you send your smoke signal way up in the sky and somebody else sees it and says “fuck I feel the same way”, then cosmically, you’re both less alone. It doesn’t even matter if you even ever meet. “

In his home-country of Canada, Dan Mangan has grown up in the public eye since garnering attention with his 2009 record ‘Nice, Nice, Very Nice’. Produced by Colin Stewart and Dan Mangan, ‘Club Meds’ now sees him step from the singer-songwriter bracket, into the Technicolor splendour of a full band with poise, self-confidence and a new found depth & complexity.

Blacksmith is Kenton Loewen (drums), Gordon Grdina (guitar), John Walsh (bass) and often JP Carter (trumpet), Jesse Zubot (violin) and Tyson Naylor (keys). They bring an unmistakable character to ‘Club Meds’; a stark glassy edge that swells and sways like a roaring ocean. Through a fog of analog feedback loops and synths, the band's performances breathe deeply and steadily like a dragon at rest.

CLUB MEDS TRACK LIST:

1. Offred
2. Vessel
3. Mouthpiece
4. A Doll’s House / Pavlovia
5. Kitsch
6. XVI
7. War Spoils
8. Forgetery
9. Club Meds
10. Pretty Good Joke
11. New Skies



Caribou 'Our Love' is out now across Europe! Get yours now via iTunes, Amazon, or direct from City Slang.

Caribou 'Our Love' is out now across Europe! Get yours now via iTunes, Amazon, or direct from City Slang.



MOMENTOUS NEWS: new Get Well Soon music is on its way to you!

3 EPs,’The Lufthansa Heist’, ‘Henry - The Infinite Desire of Heinrich Zeppelin Alfred von Nullmeyer V’ and ‘Greatest Hits’, will be released on the 10th, 17th and 24th November respectively, and will be available exclusively on limited edition 10" vinyl, as well as via all the usual digital platforms.

The band will also be back on tour in January 2015! More info after the jump, but first, watch "Staying Home", from first EP 'The Lufthansa Heist' here:


Konstantin Gropper, artistically known as GET WELL SOON, announces today that he’ll be releasing three different EPs on three consecutive Mondays this coming November. These EPs will be available exclusively on limited edition 10” vinyl, as well as in the usual digital formats at iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, Deezer, Wimp and the likes. Each EP has its own theme and its own release date.

Konstantin Gropper explains: “These EPs are projects I’ve been meaning to do for quite a long time, but neither “concept” would have been suitable for an entire album, nor would they actually all add up to a coherent album, plus I do love these smaller formats. What’s more beautiful then three nice little 10 inches with gorgeous black and white artwork all by the same artist (in this case, celebrated German painter Hermann Schenkel)?” he asks. And continues: “With the LUFTHANSA HEIST EP, I don’t exactly remember what prompted it. Whether it was a much too early midlife-crisis, a second wave of puberty, or simply a rush of nostalgia, something led me to the question: why did I start this in the first place? Inevitably I ended up at the place, or rather, the music that inspired me to pick up the guitar in the first place. I think it was called “College Rock” back then, and it sounded like Buffalo Tom or Lemonheads or Pavement.” (Editor’s note: Gropper is obviously way too young to have been around when the first wave of college rockers and slackers hit the scene, so how in hell he managed to record these songs, these crashing guitars and euphoric chords like this, is beyond us).

“The “Henry…” EP is a reverence to one of my favourite German writers: Arnold Stadler, who has just turned 60. His novel “Death and I, the two of us” (“Der Tod und ich, wir zwei”) has been accompanying and inspiring me for quite a while now. These five songs are a musical tribute to this incredibly romantic, dark, smart and funny book. Self-pity, crooked biographies, fear of being alone, the ridiculousness of life and most of all the great longing. I could probably go on forever about this masterpiece, but I’d rather recommend reading the novel. And I do hope that the music will work on its own.”

And then, of course, there are the covers. Playing other people’s songs has always been a good tradition at camp Get Well Soon. At one point I wanted to record a whole bunch of just mega-hits. I mean, real über-hits. Somehow that idea got lost in the making and I ended up recording Italian soundtrack obscurities instead, plus some songs everybody knows, and either loves or hates. Hey, if you take the saxophone out of “Careless Whisper” you actually end up with a pretty great song with meaningful lyrics. So I tried to de-cheese that one. But overall these songs have come up over the course of many years. I do hope the selection is controversial enough.”

So much from Mr. Gropper himself, though the quintessential statement we’ve left out so far. Presenting these three records to us he also pointed out: “I’m simply not ready for a new album – I’m sorry, I can’t put it any better.” No surprise here, because the man hasn’t had a real break since his last album “The Scarlet Beast O’Seven Heads” came out in 2012. Just a reminder: he produced German rapper Casper’s last platinum selling album, scored the theatre-music for “The Master And Margarita” at the Schauspiel Frankfurt, produced a theme song for the internationally celebrated film-debut “Oh Boy”, collaborated with the Orchestre National d’Ile de France in, erm, France, and so on and so on. The list is endless. And here he is, tossing out 16 new songs, seemingly without effort, because he “doesn’t feel ready for the next album”? Well, that’s what we call prolific.