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From the Promoter
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.