Bidiniband

Canada, and its music, have each gone through sweeping changes over the past three decades, and Dave Bidini has been at the forefront of them all. As a member of the Rheostatics, Bidini helped sow the seeds that have grown into Canada’s independent music scene as we know it. Since the Rheos played their final show at Toronto’s Massey Hall (incredibly, 10 years ago) Bidini has continued to carry the torch with Bidiniband, comprised of himself, one-time Rheos drummer Don Kerr, guitarist Paul Linklater, and bassist Doug Friesen.

The Motherland is Bidiniband’s third album, and its most sonically diverse and lyrically compelling to date. It may not be accurate to call it a “concept record,” although the album was constructed around strong notions of what it means to be Canadian today. As a songwriter and author, Bidini has been a master of seeing Canada in ways most of us rarely perceive, from capturing the essence of gritty, small-town experiences to celebrating the simple pleasure of seeing a hungry young band perform in a small club. While scholars continue making grand pronouncements on Canadian culture, Bidini keeps accurately documenting it all with everything he writes.

The Motherland was laid to tape during an intense six-day stretch at Toronto’s Revolution Recording. Utilizing the studio’s vintage 1973 Neve console—previously housed at RCA’s New York studio—co-producer Joe Dunphy channeled the band’s raw energy into performances that blend prog-rock grandiosity and experimentalism with touches of heart-melting Americana and pure foot-stomping rawk. Michael-Philip Wojewoda mixed the album with the usual flair he’s added to the lengthy list of projects he and Bidini have collaborated on. Call The Motherland Bidini’s White Album or Quadrophenia, or call it simply a record that distills nearly a lifetime of playing every corner of the nation into a message of hope for all who still believe in the power of rock and roll to increase the volume of voices in society that aren’t being heard.

“Art becomes more important the older I get,” Bidini says. “I believe it’s the artist’s job to draw a line in the sand, and I think the songwriting choices were a little bit more primal on this album. Punk doesn’t necessarily mean just four chords. Punk is a mindset. It’s how you see yourself in the greater world.”

The Motherland definitely doesn’t hold back in criticizing the direction Canada has taken under the leadership of Stephen Harper. The military theme of the title track sets the tone, which comes to full fruition on “All Hail Canada,” a biting assessment of Harper’s attempts to reshape Canada’s image.

Those who first encountered Bidini’s work on the Rheos’ sprawling masterpieces Whale Music and Introducing Happiness will undoubtedly appreciate the initial uninterrupted flow of The Motherland, and especially a bold remake of the Rheos’ classic “Fat.” The addition of Miranda Mulholland’s fiddle makes this new version’s climax even more exhilarating. But like all of Bidini’s work, The Motherland is not without its lighter moments. His irreverence shines through brightest on “Ladies Of Montreal,” a T. Rex-style rocker that conjures up vivid images of hitting the bars on Saint Catherine Street after a Ken Dryden shutout at the Forum. (Not to worry, Bidini will always be a proud Torontonian, and frustrated Leafs fan.)

The Motherland concludes with another epic suite that returns to the album’s original musical themes, appropriately accentuated by the voice of Al Purdy, Canada’s great poet of the masses. The sample reinforces Bidini’s feelings on how far we have drifted as a nation, and how badly we need to fight the forces bent on dividing us even further.

The Motherland was forged in the heat of powerful emotions that ran the gamut from fist-pumping joy to fear and loathing. It is sure to stir up similar emotions within the listener. This is the album that Canada needs right now.

Discography

Available May 27th, 2014


Released January 31, 2012

BUY THIS ALBUM


Released June 9th, 2009

BUY THIS ALBUM

The Motherland
01
The Grey Wave
02
The Motherland
03
The Fatherland
04
All Hail Canada
05
(The Return of) Fat
06
Hey Jesus!
07
Ladies of Montreal
08
Everyday Superstar
09
The Motherland Part Two
10
Say The Names


In The Rock Hall
01
I Wanna Go To Yemen
02
On Camoragh Lake
03
Big Men Go Fast On The Water
04
Last Of The Dead Wrong Things
05
Needle Beach
06
Hey Paul and Donna
07
Popcorn
08
The Best Thing About The 80s Was You
09
Eunioa
10
Earth (Revisited)
11
In The Rock Hall


The Land Is Wild
01
Desert Island Poem
02
Memorial Day
03
We Like To Rock
04
Take A Wild Ride
05
Terrorize Me Now
06
The Land Is Wild
07
Last Good Cigarette
08
Song Ain't Any Good
09
How Zeke Roberts Died
10
Pornography
11
Continuing Story of Canadiana and Canadiandy
12
The Ballad of 1969

Photos

Contact

Management: Christian Hurst, CO.PILOT AM
T: 416-462-3977 | E: christian.hurst@copilotam.com

Publicity: Jason Schneider, MapleMusic Recordings
T: 416-718-6549| E: jason.schneider@maplemusicrecordings.com

News

Tour Dates