Following up to 2006’s Never Hear the End of It, (an epic 30-track release), murderecords announced Sloan’s new full length album, Parallel Play. The album will be released on June 10th with summer live dates planned.
Less a conscious answer to NHTEOI’s ambitious unabridged length, Parallel Play is a boiled down continuation of the musical concepts put forth on their last album and a further exploration of the band’s four-songwriter dynamic. A term taken from the science of developmental psychology, parallel play is a behavior seen in young children in which they enjoy independent activities in the company of other children, something the four boys in Sloan know a lot about.
As Patrick says of the Sloan process, “… I think we create better separately than when we try to do it together. Sometimes collaboration works, but we’re such different people, and all of us are capable song writers and producers, that it doesn’t make sense to try and force the band to adhere to some preconceived idea of the typical rock band architecture.” Accordingly, Jay Ferguson, Chris Murphy, Patrick Pentland contributed three songs each to the album, while Andrew Scott brought four to the table.
A taste of the album:
JAY – Cheap Champagne: “… For this song, I tried to recreate the feeling of Everything You’ve Done Wrong, a very popular song in our oeuvre that was written by Patrick. I don’t know if I succeeded, but I’m pleased with the results. While our band may not always collaborate directly on songs, in little ways we influence each other and spark ideas in one another that may have not occurred otherwise… Most of my songs tend to be about situations or relationships, whether they last a couple hours or a couple years... I’ve been trying to keep all my songs well under the 3 minute mark. The closer to 2 minutes the better. It’s the Rubber Soul rule. Or the Harry Nilsson rule. This one falls in the middle.”
CHRIS – All I Am Is All You’re Not: “This song has been around in some form since 2002 or so but had been in 2 stalemates that prevented it from making a record until now. Firstly, the structure was “hotly debated” in the band. … The other problem was the lyrics… In the end I included my original verse structure as the bridge/guitar solo and changed the lyrics into one of my “smug Canadian (secretly) talks shit about the US” songs. I have one of those per record it seems. Are the social values of Canadians and people from The United States of America the same? Let’s listen to this song and see what I think.”
PATRICK – Believe In Me: “I’d had this song and half the lyrics for some time… I decided early on that I wanted my father to play organ on my stuff for the record, and I think what he played, and the sound of the organ itself, give the song that 60’s feel… Lyrically it deals with understanding that you can’t trust anyone.”
ANDREW – Down In The Basement: “I very rarely ever set out to write a ‘this or that’ kind of song… I am always drawn to the weirder side of things, or the more complicated side of things, but with this song I said, “Fuck it! I’m going to write a 12 bar blues song and I’m going to use Bob Dylan as my model.”… I wanted the song to be tambourine and piano driven and everything else could just sit behind those elements. The whole end result is just a cluttered mess and I love those kind of recordings.”
Track listing and songwriting credits for Parallel Play are as follows:
1. Believe In Me – PATRICK
2. Cheap Champagne – JAY
3. All I Am Is All You’re Not – CHRIS
4. Emergency 911 – ANDREW
5. Burn For It – PATRICK
6. Witch’s Wand – JAY
7. The Dogs – ANDREW
8. Living The Dream – CHRIS
9. The Other Side – PATRICK
10. Down In The Basement – ANDREW
11. If I Could Change Your Mind – JAY
12. I’m Not A Kid Anymore – CHRIS
13. Too Many – ANDREW