Vancouver's Mr. Merlot Unveils 'City Sex Volume 2' LP, Premieres New Song

The Jay Arner-produced album features members of Destroyer, Energy Slime, Supermoon and Milk

BY Brock ThiessenPublished May 8, 2019

With a debut full-length and a long string of live shows under his belt, Vancouver's Robert Ondzik is set to deliver a new album as his wine-swirling alter ego Mr. Merlot.

Titled City Sex Volume 2, the album is due out June 14, and it comes packing a seriously long list of guest stars. Not only was the record produced and co-written by Vancity pop prince Jay Arner, but it features appearances by Destroyer guitarist Nicolas Bragg, Energy Slime/Retail Nightmares' Jessica Delisle, Supermoon's Adrienne Labelle, Role March's Rich Sexton, Milk's Thom Lougheed, and Tom Whalen (a.k.a. Tommy Tone).

"City Sex is a term I came up with to describe the sexuality of the city dweller, which tends to be more progressive than the rural and often has less barriers," Ondzik explained in a statement. "Sadly, men are still afraid of love because it demands they show weakness, vulnerability, and tenderness, all things they're terrified of. Women are afraid of love because men can kill them, refuse to reveal their compassion, or deal with their ego. Love is treated like a transaction, and with that, it loses its real power to change and influence."

The album was recorded at Arner's studio Tonehenge, promising that "this dream team pour out a deep glass of the good stuff with dancefloor propelling grooves and plush instrumentation swirling beneath Ondzik's romantic croon."

The record is also described like this: "Viewed as a concept album about the tragic rise and fall of the male performer, this six-song cycle follows its protagonist from his height of excess to its resulting fallout."

For a taste of that, you can check out the premiere of the album track "Love's Going to Get You Again," which features guitar solos by both Milk's Thom Lougheed and Destroyer's Nic Bragg.

Ondzik had this to say of the track:

"Love's Going to Get You Again" is sort of a response to "Love Will Tear Us Apart." Love is more powerful than we give it credit for and its important to remember that if you close your heart off, you'll never be nourished nor will love find you as the song goes. Love is a risk that only rewards bravery and stupidity, it doesn't wait, it demands you risk yourself in order to fully experience its pleasures and joys. I don't believe it tears you apart, pain is a necessary component of love and loving and provides the difference that ultimately defines the goodness of love. I wrote this song specifically for those who maybe need a reminder. Maybe it'll take your whole life to find what you are looking for in someone, maybe it happened yesterday, but it will find you if you are searching. Maybe that's too cosmic for most people but I feel like you have to suspend your disbelief and power through your doubts in order to reach a greater truth.  

Listen to "Love's Going to Get You Again" for yourself down below.

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