The John Holmes Book Club 'Skin to Skin' (album stream)

The John Holmes Book Club 'Skin to Skin' (album stream)
Although the John Holmes Book Club released their debut EP shortly after forming in 2010, it took nearly four years for the Toronto indie rock outfit to put out another recording. It appears to have been worth the wait, as the band's forthcoming full-length, Skin to Skin, combines the punk rock energy of its predecessor, while expanding their sonic palette to evoke such Canadian favourites as the Tragically Hip, Sloan and the Guess Who. Hear for yourself by listening to the LP in full on Exclaim.ca.

According to a press release, the album is meant to sound like "a variety show of epic proportions," and we couldn't agree more. Whether it's the drunken sea-shanty swagger of "Fight Tonight" and "Two O'Clock," or the hard-rocking vigour of "Pride & Patience" (which previously appeared on the band's first EP), each of the album's 13 tracks surpasses its own influences.

Anchored by the Mike Mills-ian melodies of backing vocalist Ian Strung (of Starship Experience fame) and the bombastic vocal styles of lead singer Cam Switzer, Skin to Skin feels close and comfortable to CanRock's glory days while still sounding surprisingly current.

The album won't be out on iTunes until May 27, but while you wait, stream Skin to Skin in the player below. Also, help celebrate the band's long-awaited LP by checking out their album release party on May 24 at Toronto's Rancho Relaxo.