Thursday, December 1, 2016


I made a rule this year that I wouldn't review a Christmas release until Dec. 1, and I made it. And after two winter storms the last two days, plus a stupid tree in my backyard crashing down and taking out the phone and cable and power and clothesline, I need a little cheering up. So, it's a fun little holiday EP from my favourite fog-rock band from Halifax, Quiet Parade.

The group does three covers of wildly different tracks, and adds one original to the Christmas hymnbook, the number Heavy Winter, borrowed from the group's last album. Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) is of course the Darlene Love/Phil Spector classic, stood on its head here, with the Parade bypassing the wall of sound and going for a quiet and introspective approach, which actually fits the lyrics really well. Then comes the ancient hymn O Come O Come Emanuel, but now it has a fuzzy punch in the choruses, and dream-world vocals. The third cut comes from The Raveonettes, a duet with Dance Movie's Tara Thorne, a lovely little winter's night tune, like when it's not too cold at all, and it feels great to be out late in December. Heavy Winter fits the mood just fine, with its references to snowstorms, and its easing tone, if just a bit more produced than the other tracks, coming as it is from the group's sessions with Daniel Ledwell.

The group will be celebrating the release of the EP, plus their recent win at Music Nova Scotia for Alternative Recording of the Year, with a launch show Saturday, Dec. 3 in Halifax. It's at Timber Lounge, and the supercool Norma MacDonald is playing too!

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