Montreal’s electro-pop duo Young Galaxy have announced the upcoming release of their first fully independent, “punk spirit” album. Down Time stories Young Galaxy’s shift into complete independence and positions the band as a countercultural beacon during the current climate of isolation, corruption and despair.
Showcasing the band’s new independence is lead single, “Under My Wing”. The track intentionally blurs what listeners have come to expect from the band. Musically it’s cloudy and swirling, the lyrics obscured, almost unintelligible by design. As the band puts it, “it’s a song that sleeps during the day and walks the empty streets at night. It’s about the failure of capitalism, the isolation of suburbia, and the drive to discover sensuality, connection, and a spark of life in the face of despair.”
Young Galaxy began writing Down Time with a sense of reinvention in mind. In order to stay ahead of the ever-shifting landscape of the music industry, the band felt the need to step away from the industry entirely and take stock of and control over their career. Tired of the industry’s exploitative, conservative nature, the band started their own label in an effort to create a sense of community, and to stay true to an ethos of experimentalism and independence.
Young Galaxy’s Catherine McCandless says: “Beginning to write and record is always a question of seeking the headspace that will manifest the life that we want to live – it feels essential that we get up against what feels most valuable to us: love, art, subversion, risk and vulnerability. Those are the tools of the work of writing for us. In immersing ourselves in a kind of daily labour that brings about questions of whether we’ve gone far enough, left out enough, left bare enough, said too much, sweated enough, bled enough, I think we are putting out into the world powers and vulnerabilities that could be the balm, or even antidote to it. The music industry needs it, politics need it, people need it. It’s love and sex and comfort and blood and unity amongst seekers on the outside of what seems to be an absurd and lonely state of normalcy currently.”
Young Galaxy’s reverence for love and art are the driving forces behind each of their albums, and it’s from this perspective that Stephen Ramsay and Catherine McCandless decided to attack the subjects of late period capitalism, the rise of nationalism and neoliberalism on Down Time. The album is full of images of satellite towns, ring roads, empty halls, shuttered windows, abandoned train stations, suburban decay – of existences without prospects. In juxtaposition to that, there is sensuality and longing at the heart of the record. Themes of transgression, and desire are explored. Despite the challenging nature of our day to day lives, passion and inspiration are never far from the surface.
Like it’s title, the music of Down Time is ambiguous enough to evoke the desire to relax and find peace, as well as images of struggle and darkness.
The album will be available in full on April 6, 2018 via the band’s own imprint. A full list of tour dates is below - tickets available January 16th at 10AM EST.
April 4 - Vancouver, BC at Venue
April 7 - San Francisco, CA at Rickshaw Stop
April 9 - Los Angeles, CA at The Echo
April 13 - Brooklyn, NY at Knitting Factory
April 14 - Washington DC at DC9
April 19 - Hamilton, ON at The Casbah
April 20 - Toronto, ON at Velvet Underground
April 21 - Montreal, QC at PHI Centre