Published Jan 08, 2013A couple of years back, we reported that Montreal singer-songwriter Leif Vollebekk was prepping an album for release in 2011. Evidently the recording process took longer than he expected, since he's only now confirmed the release details of North Americana, due out on February 19 through his new label home of Outside Music.
In a statement, Vollebekk said, "I wrote the songs, I found the best band in the world, and then all I had to do was find the right studio, for the right take. And it took forever."
His journey for the perfect studio took him from Montreal's Hotel 2 Tango with Howard Bilerman (Arcade Fire, Wolf Parade, Godspeed You! Black Emperor), to New York City with Tom Gloady (Sigur Rós, Ryan Adams, Wilco), to La Frette-sur-Sein in France, and eventually back to Montreal for a song at Breakglass Studios. Vollebekk also worked briefly with producer John Simon (Leonard Cohen, the Band), although the results didn't make the final cut.
Vollebekk was joined by a number of backing players, including violinist Sarah Neufeld of Arcade Fire. He said, "I feel like I created a record from 1970-something that no one's heard before. I'm haggard and this record is all I got."
For a taste of the sound that Vollebekk struggled so long to achieve, stream the rustic album cut "Off the Main Drag" at the bottom of the page. Also below, see the songwriter's live schedule. He'll be playing a number of Quebec shows in the coming months, plus a pair of Toronto dates and a couple in the U.S.
1/25 Gatineau, QC - La Basoche
2/7 Brooklyn, NY - Union Hall (Communion NYC)
3/1 Wakefield, QC - The Black Sheep Inn
3/4 Chicago, IL - The Empty Bottle
3/20 Toronto, ON - CMW
3/21 Toronto, ON - CMW
3/22 Quebec City, QC - Le Cercle
3/23 Montreal, QC - Cabaret du Mile-End
3/30 Magog, QC - Vieux-Clocher de Magog *
4/2 Terrebonne, QC - Théâtre du Vieux-Terrebonne *
* with Patrick Watson