Published Jan 27, 2012With Bleating Hearts' membership culled from a number of other Vancouver-area indie outfits (Fine Mist, SSRIs, Role Mach), getting the group together can be a bit of a hassle, but the symphonic popsters have finally managed to make their full-length debut.
The outfit's self-titled album, which they will self-release on March 6, has actually been in the can for quite some time now, with the recordings having taken place from late 2010 to mid-2011 at both drummer Kevin Romain's house and guitarist Jay Arner's home studio, Tonehenge. The delay, as singer/guitarist Hasan Li tells Exclaim!, came in the post-production, pre-release stage.
"The actual recording part went really quickly," he admits. "We only did a couple takes of everything which in total took about four days with a few extra days for mixing. Most of the delay in releasing it was just getting ourselves organized enough to get the record mastered and printed, which is surprisingly difficult when your band is the size of a small Caribbean nation."
Even since the recording of Bleating Hearts, the group have increased their heft. While Brave Irene member Rose Melberg (of the Softies fame) contributed vocals to the record, it wasn't until after the album was completed that she joined the band full time on bass. The addition found Arner swapping his four-string for a guitar, though apparently internal shake-ups are nothing new.
"I played bass on the album, but switching to guitar was not too too hard; I used to play drums in the band before Kevin joined so I've never really thought of the songs in terms of what instrument I was playing," Arner explains. "But I've never been the 'guitar player' in a band before, so it's pretty fun trying to come up with complimentary parts that aren't some awful guitar cliché."
While the now eight-piece act's new album often showcases bright, upbeat and brass-heavy pop tunes, Li confesses that his lyrics unintentionally came out much darker.
"I actually never consciously had a theme for the album, but it turns out all the songs deal with either death, the apocalypse, or some sort of tragic love," he says. "Wow that sounds so goth, but I guess they're all pop songs with horns so it's not as depressing as it could be."
You can check out album track "Walls Come Tumbling Down," as well as Bleating Hearts' tracklisting below and the cover above.
1. "When Those"
2. "Walls Come Tumbling Down"
3. "Maybe We Can"
5. "T.V. Changed Our Lives"
6. "Savoir Faire"
7. "Closer Further"
8. "Molotov Kasparov"
9. "Call An Ambulance"
10. "Sand In Our Pockets"