Onsale Times

Live Nation presents

Everybody could use a trip away from 2020 and 2021. Maybe just a weekend on the lake...even if it’s just a trip of the mind. The SheepdogsNo Simple Thing has the wattage to take you to that mental cottage with six new songs so summer-y you’ll only need to pack your jean shorts and flip flops. Recorded in Montreal at Mixart Studios (built by Mahogany Rush’s Frank Marino in the 70’s), this EP sees Saskatoon’s fave furry sons returning with their classic rock influenced sound. The rich harmonies and rounded guitar tones they’re known for are further refined, and “Like an experienced chef, the band keeps honing their recipes, constantly creating more complex yet subtle flavours,” lead singer and main songwriter Ewan Currie explains. Recorded in late summer 2020, all tracks were laid down live with every member on-site in a sprawling studio with old-school monitors on mammoth 2” analog tape. Unlike a lot of other remotely trackedpandemic rock, the Sheepdogs’ bubble of comradery enabled them to focus completely, with little else to do in Covid-restricted Montreal than kick out the jams.

Their lead-off mission statement track of “Rock and Roll (Ain’t No Simple Thing)” boogies strong out of the gate paying tribute to the mysterious healing powers of rock music, Friday nights and summer flings. To show and not just tell, the intoxicating guitar solo that kicks off with a big tempo lunge puts those title brackets where their mouth is. As with all the band’s material, it’s reverent of rock history, yet Currie’s distinctive lead vocal continues to sound richly honest and never imitative as he urges you levitate with the band as the music “soothes your soul”.

Switching gears into the stomp and sway glam T-Rex beat of the first single “Keep on Loving You” and it’s reassuring look at long-time love with a bit of sugar on top, we then get the good advice of “Talk It Over”, which just might be the Sheepdogs’ own “Share the Land” (by The Guess Who). Born out of seeing the sometimes-hideous side of human nature, it’s a gentle call to “try to listen to one another”, and was the last onewritten before recording. “We’re not overtly preachy, but this one was a reaction to seeing all the fighting on social media and everywhere else in the last year,” states Currie.