Kevin Drew | | June 3, 2016
Broken Social Scene's co-founder, songwriter, and front man Kevin Drew released his newest solo album, Darlings, on March 18, 2014, on Arts & Crafts.
Darlings shows Drew growing from his role in indie vanguard Broken Social Scene to create a breakthrough statement of personal artistry. Darlings is also his first solo album that is truly, to put it bluntly, solo. If Drew's 2007 effort Spirit If... was his inaugural step beyond the decade-long shadow of his former band, Darlings spotlights Drew with seven years more experience and maturity. Darlings reveals a more focused and refined sound; more honest, revelatory songwriting, with Drew's craft concentrated on lyrical and emotional connections, less so than guitar pedals and studio jams.
This isn't to say these aren't classic Kevin Drew songs. His unorthodox lyrical explorations of family, hope and disappointment, skin and spit, intercourse, cultural infection and the death of communication, figure clearer than ever into the hallmark of his infectious melodic phrasing. Darlings is a fist-pumping fight for the euphoria of the after-party and the crush of pre-dawn passions. It's a best friend's zealous pep talk to not give up, and bring youth back into the fresh focus of life. On Darlings, Kevin Drew casts reflective inspiration forward into the brightness of the future with a soundtrack to kick everything into high gear.
Darlings features longtime collaborators Charles Spearin and Ohad Benchetrit (Do Make Say Think, Broken Social Scene) along with Dean Stone (Apostle of Hustle) and Dave Hamelin (The Stills). Darlings was co-produced by Dave Hamelin, Kevin Drew and Graham Lessard.
Kevin Drew on Darlings:
“I made this record surrounded by mountains and lakes with the greatest people. Charlie and Ohad have been with me since I began making records. I call their style "river and canoe." They have been playing together since high school and move around each other with an original melodic grace and ease. There is no one out there like them. Working with Dean Stone was something I've wanted to do ever since watching his old funk band on speed during my late teens. I met Graham Lessard in Banff and he is a wonderful engineer who inspired great sessions from us. We spent a couple of weeks at the Banff Centre and then put the recording on hold so I could finish up the album I was making with Andy Kim. Andy became a big inspiration for me. He reminded me about the magic of making records. Without working with Andy Kim I am not sure Darlings would have happened.
One of the real golden moments was introducing Dave Hamelin to the project. Turning him into a mixer/producer was amazing to witness. He brought such incredible energy into it and really helped me find my songs. This record is a celebration of memories. It's about the rise and fall of love and sex, in my own life and in today's society. This topic has been with me for years. I approached it focused purely on the songwriting, leaving all the tricks and explosions behind. I hope you like it... and if you don't, give to someone who will. “