Published Aug 16, 2011Some bands have all the luck. Then there's Regina's Library Voices. Back in 2009 the band had their gear stolen while in Vancouver. Thankfully they were able to beg, borrow and rent enough equipment to keep up with their tour commitments. However, much of that gear was subsequently lost in a flood the following year. The double whammy loss would be enough to convince even the most hardened band to pack it in (or at least put them into some serious doubt), but the group didn't think twice about soldiering on for their upcoming full-length Summer of Lust, which is now streaming here on Exclaim.ca.
"We were just heading out on a seven-week tour a few weeks after that flood," recalls the band's lyricist and synth player Michael Dawson in an Exclaim! interview. "The press we were doing at the time every interview was, 'How are you going to go on with the tour?' Until someone asked us that question we'd never even thought about it. We never considered not carrying on."
Even with Dawson's sunny outlook, the band still can't manage to shake their bad luck. "We do consciously try to keep morale high in the band but we don't have good luck with anything," he says. "Once we stepped outside of the van for maybe five seconds and someone broke into the side and stole Amanda [Scandrett, synth player]'s purse while we were all five feet away from it."
Similarly, Dawson says he wanted to avoid any negativity creeping into the writing of Summer of Lust "At the end of that tour, when we started writing this new record, it was a pretty conscious thing that we didn't want that to be part of our legacy. We don't want to be known as that band that has terrible shit happen to them. We set out to get our record out as fast as possible and make it as cheery as possible instead of some sort of sad sack story, like, 'Whoa is me.'"
Instead, Dawson focused on universal themes, including ever impending adulthood, on Summer of Lust songs like "If Raymond Carver Was Born in the 90s," the chorus of which laments, "All my friends are buying diamonds for their girls and bringing children into this world / Singing their names to a home on land they captured / Me? I'm still writing songs I'm scared you'll hear some day."
While Dawson certainly doesn't regret the choices he's made in his life -- both personal and professional -- he says that he does feel that those choices do create a certain amount of frustration. "A lot of our favourite musicians and artists have given up on it mainly due to the frustrations addressed in those songs," he says. "At the other end of the spectrum, a lot of people at the start -- friends and family -- didn't understand what we were doing and wondering when we were going to grow up and get real jobs are now looking at us through jealous eyes. We get to travel so much and do these things. I guess it works both ways."
Not everyone saw things that way, however. As Library Voices prepared to head off to a rented town hall in the tiny town of Kronau, SK to write Summer of Lust, keyboard player Karla Miller opted to stay behind.
"Karla was growing tired of the road and wanted to do other things," Dawson explains. "When we left the road, she went to Bali to become a yoga instructor. Now she's back in the city and she's expecting her first child. It was a matter of people moving on. And maybe seven people is enough, because we've never been really able to fit on a stage with eight."
You can catch the now seven-member group at any of the dates below and get set for Summer of Lust to drop on August 23 via Nevado Records. For now, you can stream the album here on Exclaim.ca.
8/19-20 Fernie, BC - Wapiti Music Festival
9/17 Edmonton, AB - Pawn Shop
9/19 Jasper, BC - Horseshoe Club
8/29 Spokane, WA - A Club
9/1 Los Angeles, CA - Hotel Cafe
9/4 San Francisco, CA - Rickshaw Shop
9/6 Salt Lake City, UT - Kilby Court
9/16 Saskatoon, SK - Amigos Cantina
9/17 Edmonton, AB - Pawn Shop
9/19 Jasper, AB - Horseshoe Club
9/20 Kelowna, BC - The Habitat
9/21 Chilliwack, BC - OAP Hall
9/22 Vancouver, BC - Biltmore Cabaret
9/23 Victoria, BC - Rifflandia Festival
9/24 Victoria, BC - Rifflandia Festival
9/25 Robert's Creek, BC - The Gumboot
9/27 Penticton - The Barking Parrot
9/28 Nelson, BC - Spirit Bar
9/29 Canmore, AB - Canmore Hotel
9/30 Calgary, AB - The Gateway
10/1 Regina, SK - The Exchange
10/13 Hamilton, ON - Casbah
10/14 Kingston, ON - Mansion
10/15 Wakefield, ON - Black Sheep Inn
10/18 Charlottetown, PEI - Baba's
10/19 Moncton, NB - Plan B
10/20 Fredericton, NB - Capital
10/21 Halifax, NS - Seahorse Tavern (Halifax Pop Explosion)
10/25 Quebec City, QC - Le Cercle
10/26 Montreal, QC - Casa De Popolo
10/27 Peterborough, ON - Trash
10/28 Toronto, ON - Horseshoe Tavern
10/29 Guelph, ON - E Bar
10/30 Windsor, ON Phog Lounge