Sloan has just released their 13th album: Steady. Steady is a word that could also describe the band’s career and their consistent output of great songs.
Chris Murphy, in a statement that accompanied the release of the album’s first single, said “they say if you want to go fast go alone, but if you want to go far go together. I don’t know if there are many other bands you can name that are still making records with their original lineup 30 years in.”
That original line-up: Jay Ferguson, Chris Murphy, Patrick Pentland, and Andrew Scott, have been responsible for many rock-solid records. They’re a band with four unique songwriters, who could all front their own outfits, and who contribute to the elevation of the great songs that Sloan has been releasing since the early 1990s. An example of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts. If you’ve been to Canada at any point in the past 30 years, you’ve undoubtedly heard their music. And, like the twelve albums that came before it, Steady is enjoyable from the attack of the opening chord to the decay on the final note.
When did you first encounter the music of Sloan? Was it a song on a compilation CD? Or a music video from the 1990s? Did you hear the song playing in an arena? See them perform at a festival? Or did someone you know come to you one day and say, “Check this out!”? Do you have a favourite song?
Maybe you’ve been a fan for decades, finding them and their distorted guitars as a rage-filled teenager. Maybe you’re a recent convert to their music. Maybe you’ve always found their lyrics to be saying the exact things you’ve been trying to express. Sloan’s songs have always felt current and immediate. Or maybe you’re an artist and musician in Canada, and Sloan is required course material for your own education.
Or maybe Steady is your introduction to the band. And that’s alright too. This album is a great gateway into a treasure trove of music that you’ll be glad you uncovered. What can we say about this new album? It’s Sloan! You know ‘em. You love ‘em! Sloan is doing Sloan things. And you should give Steady a listen.