Published Nov 10, 2008I'm not sure I've ever touched on the fantastic resource that is Daytrotter.com. Every week since the end of 2006, this extremely ambitious website has featured a new band almost every day, accumulating 20 songs to sample. In the two years it's been operating, the Daytrotter Sessions, as it's formally called, has built itself a massive and extraordinary library of exclusive performances from artists such as Vampire Weekend, A Place to Bury Strangers, the Walkmen, Tokyo Police Club, Okkervil River, Spoon, Times New Viking and hundreds more. The best thing about these sessions? Bands comment on each song and almost always premiere a brand new one or two, which you won't find anywhere else but on Daytrotter (at first). And to make it even more distinct, the website commissions specific band portraits that accompany each session, illustrated by what seems like a rotating cast of talented artists.
I just noticed the other day that one of my favourite Canadian bands, Born Ruffians, were invited for a session, where they debuted three new ones to go with a run-through of "Foxes Mate For Life," from their excellent debut LP, Red Yellow and Blue.
"Plinky Plonky" contains a springy guitar riff that complements the classic Ruffian signature title, and "Skeleton Me" demonstrates a little bit of vocalist Luke Lalonde's side-project of the same name, which doesn't stray from the band's wonky pop format. The song that stands out for me, however, is the amusingly titled "Sole Brother," where the trio combine their respective talents for one of the most buoyant examples yet of what these lads can accomplish. Lalonde's scale climbing on the guitars is what carries the tune, especially when it cuts loose at the 0:51 mark like a balloon getting away from a kiddie, floating through a playful wind thanks to the perfect amount of reverb. And I've got to give it up for drummer Steve Hamelin (I think), who gets all Sesame Street with his muppety backing vocals.
Here's what Lalonde had to say about the song:
Again a new song though this title will definitely stick. We were working on it in rehearsal and Steve had this melody in his head so I told him he should sing it. His words were all about wanting to be a soul brother, and many of his idols being rappers, etc. My half of the song was about my mom nagging me to help my grandfather rake his leaves so I decided to have a transition from one into the other about how Id like to be an only child and how I was bitter towards my sister because she never had to help do the hard chores. It only seemed logical to me to change soul to sole as a joke. Sole brother/only child.
Born Ruffians Daytrotter Session