Image by Gabe Alaya
A possible-Trump-Presidency-fueled spate of threats by more progressive Americans to “hit the North” have been abating with the unraveling of his hideous campaign. But even if we won’t be moving to Canada come November, we will be ever keeping an ear out for its music scene.
Toronto’s Dragonette, for instance, has been a particular favorite, With their shiny, metallic synth-pop, inescapable hooks, and Martina Sorbara’s alluring vocals, they’ve decisively won the hearts of hip kids on both sides of the border. They’ll have a new album out next month, intriguingly titled Royal Blues.
As they prep to launch a North American tour in early November (they’ll be at Warsaw in New York on December 10), we caught up for a chat wit Martina. We’re also premiering here their groove-monster of a new track “Darth Vader” – which might not actually be about Darth Vader.
Regarding the new album title, why do you have “Royal Blues?” Is there a specific significance to that?
The blues are just the blues…. But the Royal Blues are a sublime sadness full of beauty and creative insight.
What were some of the inspirations behind the new album? People? Places? Politics?
Royal Blues is an exploration of love in all its confusion and contradiction. There’s so much to learn about people and life once we let go of the fantasy of pristine pure love and see it in all its messiness. That’s where writing these songs took me.
Any new collaborations on the album we should know about?
We have a tune with Mike Mago who we did “Outlines” with. Got that gang back together….
Synth-pop was its own zeitgeist for awhile. Are you trying to transcend that tag?
It seems like all pop now falls under the broad umbrella of synth pop…. I’m trying to come up with a super pretentious sub-genre name for what we do… How about Pop-impressionism?
Are Dragonette Star Wars fans?
YES. Absolutely…. but not of the 3 middle ones….. we’re purists.
Is “Darth Vader” really about Darth Vader?
No. It’s about me, obviously.
Is Dragonette a good Halloween band?
I like to think we are…
What are you dressing up as for Halloween?
Last year I went as flasher Santa Claus. I haven’t come up with anything to top that yet…. I’m nervous that I’ve peaked.