Calgary born, Toronto based indie rock band the Fast Romantics finally make it to Lethbridge, April 25 at the Slice.
They were last scheduled to play Lethbridge in 2013 to open for Cowpuncher, but weren’t able to make it.
This time they have new music and a reinvigorated band to bring to Lethbridge.
The tone of the songs on the new CD “American Love,” which will officially be released April 28, changed from poppy love songs to something more serious as they toured the U.S in the midst of a vicious election year and subsequent election of Donald Trump to president.
While frontman Matthew Angus and bassist Jeffrey Lewis formed the band in Calgary, they moved to Toronto three years ago and formed a new version of the Fast Romantics with a variety of Toronto talent including Kirty (vocals, acoustic guitar, synth), Kevin Black (guitars), Lisa Lorenz (keyboards) and Nick McKinlay (drums).
“I’ve been playing with Jeff for years, seven years with the Fast Romantics when we lived in Calgary and we were in other bands before that. It‘s great to have a dear friend like that. He’s a bud,” Angus said, adding his other bandmates joined one by one beginning with Kirty, who immediately impressed him with her other musical project.
“So it was pretty organic. But instead of making a record right away, we wanted to tour together and become good before we recorded,” he said.
“When we started, I wrote a bunch of songs that I wanted to sound like love songs in the ’60s, so they had a Motown feel. But we were touring during that election madness and during Trump’s inauguration, so it didn’t feel quite right to sing them. Some of the lyrics got changed on the road,” Angus added.
“By the time we were done touring, and ready to record, the songs had more of an edge to them,” he continued.
“I wanted to talk about the political situation without it sounding like a university speech,” he said.
The video for the first single “Why We Fight” reflected the new feel of the songs.
“I’ve always had this obsession with manipulating old footage and was lucky enough to find a reenactment of Abraham Lincoln doing that speech. So it looks like he’s singing our song,” he said.
“I did the same thing with our song ‘Julia’ I found some video of Fred Astaire that seemed to fit the song. So it looks like we‘re dancing with Fred Astaire. I love that video of him. It really suited the song” he said.
Radio has embraced the Fast Romantics a sCBC has been playing “Why We Fight” and listed the band as one to watch.
“ A lot of people have been giving us positive feedback on it,” he said.
The Fast Romantics have been touring with Said The Whale.
“It feels good. They are great dudes. We also toured with the Zolas and the Matinee,” he said from a tour stop in Montreal.
“ That’s what we’ve been doing. Touring a lot. Some drives are shorter than others. This one was two hours.”
He noted other videos are on the way.
“ We can’t tell you which one yet. But the next one will is very Alberta-centric. It should be released by the time we get there,” he said.
The Fast Romantics play the Slice with the Matinee, April 25 at 9p.m. Admission is $10 at the door.