Perhaps you've seen Exclaim!'s bright orange cover in street boxes contrasting against the snow, Father John Misty's sunglasses blocking out the glare of light from winter's white blanket and suggesting that maybe — just maybe — warmth and sunlight are on its way. That new cover also tells you it's time to get caught up on this month's wealth of artist interviews and album reviews, hot off the press in the April Issue of Exclaim!. This edition includes our usual slew of music we're tuned into, including notable upcoming albums and reviews, as well as 2017's hot box office films and more.
As mentioned above, you can feast your eyes on Father John Misty on the cover, who in our print-exclusive cover story ponders the question: "Are we not entertained?" The sardonic folk-rocker's forthcoming album, Pure Comedy, has a lot to say on the matter. In our story, we unpack the politics behind Joshua Tillman's thought-provoking and sharp-witted album. The former Fleet Foxes drummer says that while Pure Comedy is "existential," it also "really is a love letter humanity."
Also included in the issue is our in-depth Timeline of the history of Glaswegian rock vets the Jesus & Mary Chain, whose sizable influence on alternative rock is demonstrated in the hearty feature. From their humble start in East Kilbride, Scotland to reaching the heights of rock'n'roll stardom and then brawling until the band finally succumbed in the late '90s, we unearthed all the crazy stories leading up to their reformation and long-awaited seventh album, Damage and Joy.
The end of the month marks the release of a new indie album for Canadian musical chameleon Nelly Furtado. In our monthly Questionnaire, Exclaim! put Furtado in the hot seat, as she detailed her involvement in a "mind-altering" MOMA PS1 performance art installation last year, which Toronto record store made her love music again and her strange movie theatre encounter with Michael Moore.
On the brink of their 25th anniversary as a band, Spoon are undergoing their biggest sonic change yet on their psychedelic-leaning, Dave Fridmann-produced LP, Hot Thoughts. Speaking about the increased role of keyboardist Alex Fischel on the record, singer Britt Daniel remarks, "I think a lot of good things came together at once and we were able to make this record that goes in different directions."
Of course, our new issue is loaded with plenty more interviews. Following the release of their latest, self-titled album, we got a chance to chat with David Longstreth of Dirty Projectors about the album's strong R&B influences and his response to songwriting post break-up. Then, folk trio favourites Elliott Brood hint at new material, discussing the positive effects their Hamilton, ON practice space has had on their growth and progression as a band in our latest edition of Music School.
We also got a close glimpse into the mysterious persona of Toronto-based noir&B up-and-comer Allan Rayman, the brains behind the scintillating Roadhouse 01, while Montreal electronic producer Jacques Greene walked us through the making of his danceable first full-length album, Feel Infinite, and discussed the temptations of sticking to your roots versus branching out.
On the film side of things, we spoke to actor Jay Baruchel, who fulfilled his dream of directing a feature film with Goon: Last of the Enforcers, his sequel to Michael Dowse's original Goon. Baruchel is confident the film will measure up to the first one, as he knew that the cult following would have high expectations: "There are people getting Goon quotes and characters tattooed onto different body parts; that's not lost on us."
Detailing the steady success of songwriter Daniel Caesar, we've compiled a list of must-know facts about the R&B up-and-comer to celebrate his first Juno nomination. Also in the issue, you can read up on reviews and interviews concerning freshly released albums by Power Trip, King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard, Thundercat, the Magnetic Fields, Rhiannon Giddens, Jidenna, Nathan Fake, London O'Connor and Leif Vollebekk.
Next time you're heading to your favourite coffee shop, record store or to a concert venue for a show, be sure to grab a fresh April issue of your own. You can also find Exclaim! in our boxes lining the streets countrywide.