It's always a pleasure to greet a new record from beloved power-pop supergroup The New Pornographers, especially after four years since their last effort, Together. Unlike most such projects, they're actually getting better with age (new album Brill Bruisers is their sixth). NP leader Carl Newman recently told CBC that "on this record the voices melded together more seamlessly than ever before". He's right, and with voices as strong as Newman, Dan Bejar (Destroyer), Neko Case, Kathryn Calder, and guest Amber Webber (Black Mountain), the results are indeed thrilling. A key factor in the band's success is the fact that they have a signature sound, yet it is a highly varied and multi-faceted one. "Backstairs", for instance makes cool use of the vocoder. When they formed in 1999, few would have predicted they'd still be going strong 15 years later, but we're sure grateful they are.
An extensive North American then European tour started this week. Dates include a Sept. 8 appearance at industry event Festival Music House in Toronto. Go to the band's website for tour details.