Canis Majoris Release Date Announced
UPDATE: Canis Majoris is available for presale now on iTunes at a discounted price with five instant gratification tracks, so download today and enjoy!
The wait is nearly over! Canis Majoris, Esquela’s third studio album, is set for release on February 20th, 2016. After once again teaming with producer Eric “Roscoe” Ambel, Esquela continues its exploration of musical roots embedded deep in the grit of rural America.
With this latest album, founder, bassist, and vocalist John “Chico” Finn approached the song writing process from an entirely new angle, which resulted in a more collaborative end product. “I brought ideas to the table,” Finn said, “and the band provided input to shape the final arrangements. We’ve grown a lot and these songs are more fully evolved.” What’s also clear is that this group of musicians is growing more confident with each new step they take.
In advance of the February 20th release date, Esquela is offering its fans an exclusive track-by-track preview of this 10-song album:
1. It Didn’t Take
Canis Majoris starts off strong with a call back to the Doo-Wop classics of the 1950’s. “It Didn’t Take” tells the story of a toxic relationship, but keeps the mood light with spirited backing vocals, rhythmic piano licks, and saxophone solos that would set any sock hop to jumping.
2. Too Big to Fail
There’s a strong undercurrent of anger in “Too Big to Fail,” Esquela’s commentary on corporate greed and the wreckage it inevitably brings. Throughout the song, an ominous guitar lead underscores the band’s pointed lyrics and echoes their notes of sorrow and disgust.
The protagonist in “Sorry,” is… really, really sorry. He “screwed up” in a “moment of weakness” and promises his lover it will never happen again, and just when you think he’ll get away with it all, the song takes a delicious and hilarious turn. “Sorry” harkens back to the old call-and-response songs of classic country and western music and features “Chico” Finn and Becca Frame sharing lead vocals.
4. Pine Tar
George Brett’s infamous pine tar incident is one of the most outrageous moments in baseball history and fertile ground for a fantastic story song. Accompanied by a lazy guitar lead, Becca Frame’s smokey-voiced retelling gives this song a surrealistic sense that must have matched the feelings of everyone in attendance that day.
5. Valentine’s Day
In what’s probably the most traditional love song on Canis Majoris, “Valentine’s Day” is brimming with the kind of energy and joy you feel when you’ve finally found the truest of loves. “Because every day is Valentine’s Day/Whenever I’m with you.”
6. Need Not Apply
The jaunty pace of “Need Not Apply” provides a stark contrast to the tragedy and injustice present in its lyrics. The song speaks to the trials, tribulations, and eventual triumphs of early Irish immigrants and is set to the recognizable guitar, fiddle, and tin whistle sounds of traditional Irish folk music.
7. Gold Digger
This classic kiss-off song burns slow with the relentless criticism of a no-good, lazy, gold digging partner before climaxing in a blazing crescendo of 70’s style guitars and Becca Frame’s soaring vocals.
At its core, DKC is a song dedicated to the unique love that forms between friends who are something closer to brothers and the sorrow that sometimes comes in equal measure with joy.
Written by Chico and his young daughter after a weekend expedition, “Animals” is filled with the kind of sweet and simple observations of a child, enamored by the entire animal kingdom.
10. Blue Canoe
Canis Majoris closes with Esquela’s cover of the Blue Mountain classic “Blue Canoe.” Again, Chico and Becca take turns on lead vocal and the lush and layered guitar sounds brings the album to an upbeat and satisfying end.
When you listen to Canis Majoris you’ll hear great songs played by skilled musicians, but you’ll also come away with the overwhelming sense that this a band who loves what they do.
Rebecca Frame of Esquela has a lovely voice: rock & roll with a heavy dose of sound — especially so on the shining album openers “Free Beer” and “No Questions.”