April’s Band of the Month is SAID THE WHALE, plus new album As Long As Your Eyes Are Wide reviewed!

Said the Whale is a local BC-based band that has gained a big following nation-wide. After four years without any new music they just released a new album on March 31, and they’re touring Canada all month long. So check out my thoughts on As Long As Your Eyes Are Wide below and find out when they’ll be hitting up your town!

This felt like a big return to form as an album of experimentation and versatility, although a lot more poppy than their previous releases. Under the overarching elation and brightness that came through in the whole album, you can find a little of everything here. There’s some deeply moving, sad pieces like ‘Miscarriage’ and happier turns from ‘More than Ever’ and ‘Confidence.’ It’s a different take on a breakup album, looking positively towards the future instead of moping in the heartbreak of past or present.

We start out with their first single ‘Step Into the Darkness’ which is a little more upbeat than the title suggests. Despite coming from the inspiration of a bad breakup it’s poppy and bright – and feels like the perfect song to listen to as you drive through Canada this summer.

They pick up on a lot of their previous indie folk-rock origins throughout while bringing something new to the table. You’ll find a lot of the usual acoustic sounds mixed with some new synth-pop dance-floor influences, especially in songs like ‘I Will Follow You.’ But no matter how positive their songs might be, they never lose their contemplative musings. ‘Heaven’ proves this in one of their best of the album, looking at nostalgia as a necessity for eternal paradise.

They aren’t afraid to shy away from private topics, like in ‘Miscarriage’ that is just as heartfelt and upsetting as you would expect. Although more morose than the rest of the album, it’s a grounding force and provides an incredibly moving and uplifting sentiment. By the end, they prove the ability to move past heartbreak and overcome tragedy: It’s already our tomorrow/And the midnight sun will drive us home/And everything is beautiful.

You can clearly track the evolution of Said the Whale to their production of this album, As Long As Your Eyes Are Wide. It’s polished, fresh, and a beautiful addition to their discography without stripping away what came before.

April 4 – Rum Runners at London Music Hall – London, ON
April 5 – Bronson Centre Theatre – Ottawa, ON
April 6 – Petit Campus – Montreal, QC
April 7 – Centre In The Square – Kitchener, ON
April 8 – The Red Dog – Peterborough, ON
April 11 – Iron Works – Buffalo, NY
April 12 – Mercury Lounge – New York, NY
April 13 – Kung Fu Necktie – Philadelphia, PA
April 27 – Hope Bay Studio – Pender Island, BC
April 28 – Sugar Nightclub – Victoria, BC
April 29 – Vogue Theatre – Vancouver, BC
May 3 – The Habitat – Kelowna, BC
May 4 – Commonwealth Bar – Calgary, AB
May 5 – Starlite Room – Edmonton, AB
May 6 – Cosmopolitan – Saskatoon, SK
May 7 – Park Theatre – Winnipeg, MB