By Divine Right's José Contreras Reworks Old Material on First Solo Album

By Divine Right's José Contreras Reworks Old Material on First Solo Album
José Contreras has been fronting By Divine Right for well over two decades, and now the Canadian indie rock songwriter is finally preparing to release his first solo album. His self-titled LP will be out on July 8 through Squirtgun Records.

The collection doesn't feature any new material. Rather, it consists of stripped-down versions of songs from across By Divine Right's catalogue. It was recorded with producer Lee Maslin at Contreras' own Chicano Power studio in Caledon, ON, outside of Toronto.

The album was recorded without a band, with the emphasis instead on the singer's voice and the atmosphere of the room. According to a press release, "The resultant record is full of nocturnal warmth and a welcoming vulnerability that comforts with quiet confidence. The sparse arrangements of these old and new songs echo their isolated, almost secretive, nature, producing an album of solitary hymns lightly circled with improvisation."

See the tracklist below. It includes material as recent as last year's Organized Accidents and as old as the '90s. At the bottom of the page, stream the stark new piano version of "Past the Stars" [via Quick Before It Melts], which originally appeared on Organized Accidents.

José Contreras:

1. Listen to My Angels
2. Angels
3. Psychic Radio
4. Silver Thread
5. Past the Stars
6. Help Me Find a Place to Land
7. Twisted Crystalline
8. She Knows
9. I Want Light
10. Kick This Bummer