by Shanell Dupras
For Slow Dancers, things have gotten off to a bit of a slow start. Guitarist and songwriter Jesse Hill, bass player Marie-France Hollier, and drummer Cole Woods set up in the studio and recorded their debut full length album, Day After Rain, two years ago, but the album was never officially released.
And now, Day After Rain is finally going to come out from the darkness.
“I’m excited that it’s finally getting released. It was recorded a long time ago. I have a sort of weird distance to the whole thing because of the time,” said Hill.
Hill said he doesn’t have any extravagant plans for the album release; he’s just excited to share the music with others.
“I wanted to release it because I’m proud of it, and also because I have friends who want to hear it,” Hill told Stylus. “I guess with these band promo pictures, it just seems like there’s a lot of vanity in it, and I’m reluctant to do that sort of thing.”
That’s exactly what Nick Liang of Departures likes about Slow Dancers.
“Most bands fall prey to outside considerations,” Liang said, “be that expectations, willingness to satisfy an audience, or vanity. Slow Dancers are instead insular and not concerned with anything but satisfying their own artistic whims.”
For Hill, the whole point of the band is for them to move slowly.
“I started touring when I was 15 years old and went kind of hard into music and doing this sort of thing. I kind of almost burnt myself out doing it. [With] Slow Dancers the whole idea was to do things slowly and not force it, just have it be as it is.”
Hill will be leaving for grad school for the next school year, so it was time to share Day After Rain with Winnipeg. But don’t worry, even though Hill is leaving, he doesn’t expect Slow Dancers to stop.
“Realistically with me going away, it’s not really going to slow us down. We’re already going so slowly. I’ll be back in Winnipeg every few months probably, so I assume we’ll jam at those points and continue being as much of a band as we are.”
Hill wrote all of the songs on Day After Rain, some of them he even wrote when he was only 18.
“I’ve always written a lot of songs since early adolescence, so this is just some of them. I wouldn’t want this to be stressed too much, but a lot of the songs were written immediately after a break up with a long-term girlfriend of mine.”
Otherwise, Hill said there aren’t any recurring themes within the album.
Since Day After Rain was recorded two years ago, Slow Dancers has almost a full album’s worth of new songs as well. Hill said he does want to record those songs, but said they wouldn’t be releasing another album until at least a year after this release.
Hill said that the recording process for Day After Rain was easy and they recorded all of the songs within a couple of days. They worked with producer Cam Loeppky, who’s also worked with Winnipeg musicians like the Weakerthans and Greg MacPherson.
“The best thing about the band is that we have a certain sort of chemistry. I think that the three of us just play well together, whether that’s just because we’re old friends or whatever. It was easy to record, we just recorded it live,” Hill said.
Liang said that each of the band members adds their own personality to each of the songs.
“Jesse, Cole, and Mef, inject their own personalities into each song, which in turn makes their music an extension of both their attitudes and selves,” he said. “Jesse is the sweetest and perhaps most well-read person I know. Marie-France is the coolest and has perhaps the best taste of anyone I know. Cole is one funny motherfucker.”
Slow Dancers doesn’t have a release party date set in stone yet, but keep an eye out for a release party sometime in May. Liang recommends seeing Slow Dancers whenever you have the chance.
“Slow Dancers’ existence, like most great bands, will likely be ephemeral. You’d be doing yourself a favor if you saw what they are about while you can.”
For more information on Slow Dancers, you can check them out atwww.disintegration.ca/artists/slow-dancers-2/. And don’t miss the release show Saturday May 24 at the Rudolph Rocker up at 91 Albert St!