The Mohawk Lodge Crimes

The Mohawk Lodge Crimes
Ryder Havdale's White Whale Records has been quietly putting out pretension-free rock records for some time now, but the label and its small stable of artists still find themselves left out of the Canadian indie rock spotlight. Havdale's band, and the label's flagship act, the Mohawk Lodge continue to make a case that "modern rock" doesn't need be a dirty term on their third full-length, Crimes. Reinventing their sound with each release, the band have added a new layer of chiming guitars and sing-along choruses, reminiscent of Halifax, NS's Wintersleep, to their trademark low-end chugging. But where that band's songs have become more impersonal with each step towards the mainstream, Havdale uses his newfound pop songwriting chops to explore deeply personal relationship issues. Avoiding the overwrought emotion of your average emo record, a sense of paranoia pervades Crimes ― witness "Done Fighting," whose opening lines, "Breaking up/to fuck around/everyone I know has had the run around," stand in stark contrast to its joyous gang vocal chorus. Clearly, Havdale, who recently relocated from Vancouver to Toronto, has had bigger worries than his place in the Canadian musical landscape. (White Whale)