Category Archives: news

Sam Roberts Band’s NEW ALBUM TerraForm is coming October 28th!

Behold! This is the cover of TerraForm, the long-awaited seventh album from SAM ROBERTS BAND.

Sam Roberts Band Terraform

STOP YOUR LIFE, and go pre-order this record right now. You’ll get TerraForm the title track, and it’s just the most beautiful wall of sound ever. We’ve got a release date – October 28th –  we’ve got the title track, and we’ve got this track listing  . . .

1. TerraForm
2. FIEND
3. If You Want It
4. Black Spark
5. Roll With The Spirits
6. Ritual Dance
7. Tourist Trap
8. Rogue Empire
9. Lake Effect
10. The House Inside
11. Spring Fever

Beyond the amazing news of a beautifully official release date and a gorgeous new song, we’ve also got NEW TOUR DATES – SRB is bringing their flawless live game and NEW RECORD to eleven cities across Quebec, Atlantic Canada (with Adam Baldwin!), and the Eastern US in November, and tickets are ON SALE NOW. (Check the band’s FB for the most complete listings, including the American dates).

We don’t know much about TerraForm yet, but here’s what Sam said in the Universal press release:

“Terraforming is the concept going to another planet and making it viable and livable for humans.  But in a sense, for this record it can be seen as planting the seeds for that sort renewal in your own life – that regardless how much you have broken the parts your life along the way, there is always a chance to start over.”

And here’s what he told  The Leader-Post before the band’s triumphant return to Regina Folk Fest in July:

“In terms of this record, like the nature of it, I really think that it’s very much an album and not just a collection of songs. It’s meant to be listened to from start to finish. I think in some ways, part of the inspiration behind it, was to make a bit of a musical journey in a way — something that would induce a state of mind that you occupy for the duration of the album — I hope that people hear it and listen to it in that way.” 

TerraForm the title track is THE perfect start to any musical journey, and a start-to-finish listen is exactly how I’d describe my very, very most favourite SRB album Chemical City.

Now go pre-order TerraForm the album, because TerraForm the song will blow your mind and steal your heart all at the same time. If you haven’t heard this song yet, brace yourself.

And if you haven’t seen the TerraForm merchandise yet, then you better sit down.

There’s two (2) limited edition records – a glow-in-the-dark limited press from samrobertsband.com, and there’s also a translucent splatter limited press from Paper Bag Records. Only 500 of each record will be available – unless you enjoy hunting limited edition vinyl down when it’s nearly impossible to find (trust me – you do not), your best bet is ordering right now before everything sells out.

There’s a box set and a t-shirt and a signed guitar and a lithograph and it’s enough to satisfy even the most raging of SRB addictions, including my own. All this fun stuff is available on the band’s website.

Perhaps most importantly, all this delicious pre-order swag comes with a pre-sale access code for tickets to select dates on SRB’s upcoming TerraForm tour, and this will come in handy later.

TerraForm is available October 28, and the tour kicks off November 2 in Sherbrooke, Quebec.

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NEW Sam Roberts Band! IF YOU WANT IT is finally here!

And just like that, the summer of #SRBLP6 started on Saturday with the release of IF YOU WANT IT, the tremendous new single from Sam Roberts Band we’ll hear absolutely everywhere this summer.

If You Want It

This is not a REVIEW of SRB’s new single IF YOU WANT IT, because a review would be silly. I’ve got a raging SRB addiction, and I wear my heart on the sleeve of my Canadian tuxedo when it comes to those guys and their music.

This is a CELEBRATION of SRB’s new single IF YOU WANT IT, because if early signs are any indicator, this infectious sing-and-dance-along gem just might become the song of the summer.

If I may be so bold, I would like to throw the term “perfect Sam Roberts Band song” out there. If you don’t like it, you can send it right back, BUT judging by the overwhelmingly positive response on social media this weekend, absolutely everybody wants IF YOU WANT IT.

From the Twitter . . .

In Ontario, good taste runs in the family  . . .    Tweet_Shannon And our American friends will hold out as long as it takes for iTunes to give up the goods:Tweet_Karen In other news, the merch demands started already, because that’s what happens when the artwork is so rad.

It would be impossible for the mad, mad fan love to burn any brighter on the band’s Facebook page. Here’s a random sample, but it’s all exactly like this . . .
If You Want It Facebook

There’s also no way I can keep up with the Facebook views, and the shares are endless, too.

No official #SRBLP6 release date yet, but after this weekend’s beautifully flawless release (Apple Music! Beats 1! The Strombo Show!) of such a ridiculously impressive first jam, it’s probably best we’ve got some time to brace ourselves before we hear anything else.

Until then, you can download IF YOU WANT IT on iTunes, and if you use Apple Music, you can relive the song’s premiere on The Strombo Show over and over again.

Your first possible chance to hear IF YOU WANT IT live – if it makes Sam’s setlist, of course – is this Thursday at Winnipeg Folkfest.

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Sam Roberts Band just shot a video for their NEW SINGLE

We must be closer than ever to new music from Sam Roberts Band, because our beloved SRB just filmed a music video for the first single off their new record this weekend.

The SRB’s new (!!!!) single is called IF YOU WANT IT, and here are some very mysterious photos from the SRB’s video shoot on Sunday at Pie In The Sky Studios in Toronto . . .

Video Shoot_Eric

Video Shoot_James

Video Shoot_Dave

Video Shoot_Sam

Video Shoot_Josh

My mind is still kinda blown from watching videos of Sam crowd surfing his way across Ontario this weekend, and my video production knowledge is very limited / non-existent, but if that’s green screen, anything is possible. Also, I counted exactly five (5) members of the SRB in these photos – does this mean we’re returning to the days of I Feel You, when videos featured the entire band?

And if there’s a green screen, what can we expect for visuals? What about special effects? When will we see the video? And when will we hear the single on the radio, exactly?

So many questions! So few answers! Only SRB knows for sure.

All I know is a delightfully official hashtag appeared online Sunday, and we’ve gotta be close if there’s an official hashtag, right? I sure hope so, because the summer of #SRBLP6 can’t get here fast enough for me.

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If You Want An Update On The New Sam Roberts Band Album . . .

Good news if you’re not-so-patiently waiting to hear new music from the Sam Roberts Band.

The wait is almost over.

This is not a fantasy, lo or otherwise. This is straight from Sam himself – I’m just repeating what he told Jack FM’s Rick Lee in this interview about the SRB’s free show at Sun Peaks on July 8th.

It’s a good interview. If you didn’t get the chance to listen yet, here are some of the things Sam and Rick talked about . . . 

Sam is listening to the master of the new record before it’s forever and ever.

Their new single is going out to radio in the “NEXT FEW WEEKS” (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

This single will be the first song the SRB “pull out of the bag” and play live.

We’ll hear the rest of the record live when the SRB tour starts this fall.

Tl;dr: NEW SINGLE, NEW RECORD, AND NEW TOUR? Yes, yes, and yes! 

There’s a longer version of the interview right here. It covers other important stuff, like Father’s Day and Game of Thrones and a gender-neutral Canadian anthem.

And that free Sun Peaks show? There’s more info here, and you can buy Front of Stage Access tickets – if you’re into that kinda thing – here, too.

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Happy Birthday, Chemical City!

When the Sam Roberts Band released Chemical City in 2006, the critics used words like “magnificent slab of psychedelia flavored rock”, “sumptuous,” and “anthemic” – their “most ambitious work to date,” they said.

Some loved the new stuff – the evolution, if you will – while others just wanted Sam to make another We Were Born in A Flame, and who can blame them, really? Change is hard – scary, even – and We Were Born In A Flame is so very, very good.

Sadly, there will never be another We Were Born In A Flame, just like there will never be another Chemical City. Happily, the evolution will no doubt continue with the SRB’s new, yet-to-be-released sixth studio album. Before we go crazy because there’s a NEW ALBUM in the works, let’s celebrate the last ten years of Chemical City with ten random facts about the SRB’s sophomore album, shall we?

1. Somewhere between We Were Born In A Flame and Chemical City, in the first few months of 2005, Sam and his wife Jen traveled all over the place: South Africa, Holland, Australia. Was it wanderlust or running from themselves? We’ll never know. We do know they found an old church in Newrybar, in Australia’s Byron Bay, and the old church became one of two studios where the band recorded the album.

2. Why Australia?

“We were looking for somewhere in the southern hemisphere because we wanted it to be hot. I didn’t want to make another winter record,” Sam told Canoe.ca’s Jane Stevenson. “I honestly believe the weather influences the outcome in a big way, and it was a freezing cold winter in Montreal. So Australia was just staring right in our faces and none of us had ever been there before.”

3. Matt Mays joined Sam in Australia, and he played the guitar and sang on Uprising Down Under. (The Internet also says they surfed a lot). Matt also joined the band in CBC’s Studio 211 for their Lo-Fantasy special and a little Uprising Down Under.


4. The SRB’s friend Joseph Donovan produced this record (and he won a Juno for producing the next one, Love at the End of the World), and the band also recorded some of Chemical City at Stock Market Audio in Montreal.

5. Released in April 2006 (May in the USA), Chemical City gave us three singles – The Gate, Bridge to Nowhere, and With A Bullet. Directed by Dave Pawsey (who also directed Them Kids, Detroit ’67, Shapeshifters, and co-directed I Feel You with Jonathan Legris), Bridge to Nowhere won the Juno Award for Best Video in 2007.

6. The cover of Chemical City is a stunner.

chemical city cover art
If you wish you could create incredible art too, good news – there’s a class for that. The illustrator – Alberta-born artist Ken Dewar – is also a sessional instructor at the Alberta College of Art and Design in Calgary.  Ken took the band’s sci-fi / fantasy inspired ideas, and “came back with this incredible thing, right off the top,” says Sam in this canoe.ca article from back in the day.  “And I was, ‘Oh, my God, I can’t believe that this is going to be on our record.'”

7. There’s a Japanese release of Chemical City, with a Japanese sleeve covering alternate cover art and two bonus tracks: Fall Before You Finish, and Embrasse Moi. Good reasons to add this one to your collection (it’s around, you’ve just gotta look), include the aforementioned bonus tracks (Fall Before is especially stellar), and the cover, because Sam is wearing what appears to be a most incredible dashiki, and there’s kimonos inside.

Chemical City (Japanese Release)

8. Sam the Songwriter prepared for Chemical City by not, um, preparing for Chemical City, mostly, and it’s all because he read the Neil Young autobiography Shakey.

“You know, Neil would sit down to record with Crazy Horse or whoever he was working with at the time, and he would have a couple of riffs, and that would be it. They would make a record like that,” Sam told Vancouver’s Georgia Straight back in 2006.  “And I just love those records, where they were working through problems but the Record button was constantly on.”

9. On the List of Songs The SRB Never Play Live, A Stone Would Cry Out comes out on top. In this YouTube video of a live performance from Sonic Records, Sam himself says we’ll “never hear it,” because he’s “saving it for the retirement years.” Let’s say you can’t wait that long – you’re a master piano player who’s desperate for a live version, so you’re just going to recreate this lovely jam at home – that’s not gonna happen, either. Sam broke the bad news to the blog Apocalypse Now back in 2009:

“There’s a very specific set of things that has to happen to a piano to get that tone. We were in Australia and there was this very old Australian guy who lived out in the middle of the bush and owned a piano shop. And we went up there one day and picked out a piano that sounded perfectly fine. He put it on the back of his delivery truck a week later after tuning it, supposedly,” explained Sam. “Then he brought it by one of the bumpiest roads you could imagine and dropped it off and the thing sounded the way that it did. It went from being a very normal piano to being a very irregular piano, but to me that is what gave the song it’s personality. That sound just kinda came out.”

10. Single number three With a Bullet – or Bullet, as it’s noted on set lists – is a fan favourite, but this little gem didn’t receive the love it deserves back then.  In fact, there wasn’t even a video . . .  until the band released this incredible live version filmed at Montreal’s Metropolis in 2012, and it was totally worth the wait.

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