The Besnard Lakes Are the last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings album cover
The Besnard Lakes Are the last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings
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The Besnard Lakes

The Besnard Lakes Are the last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings

Pre-order on new pressing ships by July 2, 2021

2021 | CD / LP | FLCR045

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  • The Besnard Lakes have passed through death and they're here to tell the tale. Nearly five years after their last lightning-tinted volley, the magisterial Montreal psych-rock band has sworn off compromise, split with their long-standing label, and completed a searing, 72-minute suite about the darkness of death and the light on the other side.

    'The Besnard Lakes Are The Last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings' is the group's sixth album, now on preorder as a gatefold double vinyl.

    1. Blackstrap
    2. Raindrops
    3. Christmas Can Wait 
    4. Our Heads, Our Hearts on Fire Again
    5. Feuds With Guns
    6. The Dark Side of Paradise
    7. New Revolution
    8. The Father of Time Wakes Up
    9. Last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings
  • The Besnard Lakes have passed through death and they're here to tell the tale. Nearly five years after their last lightning-tinted volley, the magisterial Montreal psych-rock band have sworn off compromise, split with their long-standing label, and completed a searing, 72-minute suite about the darkness of dying and the light on the other side.

    The Besnard Lakes Are The Last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings is the group's sixth album and the first in more than 15 years to be released away from a certain midwestern American indie record company. After 2016's A Coliseum Complex Museum - which saw Jace Lasek and Olga Goreas attempting shorter, less sprawling songs - the Besnards and their label decided it was time to go their separate ways; with that decision came a question of whether to even continue the project at all. What use is a band with an instinct for long, tectonic tunes - rock songs with chthonic heft and ethereal grace, five or 10 or 18 minutes long? How do you sell that in an age of bite-sized streaming? How do you make it relevant?

    "Who gives a shit!" the Besnard Lakes realized. Ignited by their love for each other, for playing music together, the sextet found themselves unspooling the most uncompromising recording of their career. Despite all its grandeur, ...The Last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings honours the very essence of punk rock: the notion that a band need only be relevant to itself. At last the Besnard Lakes have crafted a continuous long-form suite: nine tracks that could be listened together as one, like Spiritualized's Lazer Guided Melodies or even Dark Side of the Moon, overflowing with melody and harmony, drone and dazzle, the group's own unique weather.

    Here now, the Besnard Lakes finally dispensed with the two/three-year album cycle, taking all the time they needed to conceive, compose, record and mix their opus. Some of its songs were old, resurrected from demos cast aside years ago. Others were literally woodshedded in the cabanon behind Lasek and Goreas's "Rigaud Ranch" - invented and reinvented, relishing this rougher sound. Some of that distortion makes its way into the final mix: an incandescent crackle that had receded from the Besnards' more recent output. 

    Rightly - nay, definitively! - The Besnard Lakes Are The Last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings is a double LP. "Near Death" is the title of the first side. "Death," "After Death," and "Life" follow next. It's literally a journey into (and back from) the brink: the story of the Besnard Lakes' own odyssey but also a remembrance of others', especially the death of Lasek's father in 2019. Being on your deathbed is perhaps the most psychedelic trip you can go on: in Lasek's father's case, he surfaced from a morphine dream to talk about "a window" on his blanket, with "a carpenter inside, making intricate objects." That experience pervades the album, catching fire on the song "Christmas Can Wait"; elsewhere the band pays tribute to the late Mark Hollis and, on "The Father of Time Wakes Up," they mourn the death of Prince.

    In these scorched and pitted times, as the world smoulders, there might be nothing less trendy than an hour-long psych-rock epic by a band of Canadian grandmasters. Then again, there might be nothing we need more. ...The Last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings is a bright-blazing requiem: nine tunes that are one tune and six musicians who make one band - unleashed and unconstrained, piercing and technicolour. At the end of the golden day, the Besnard Lakes are right where they should be. 

    Liner Notes

    Written, produced and composed by Jace Lasek and Olga Goreas
    Recorded at The Rigaud Ranch and Breakglass Studios
    Mixed by Jace Lasek at Breakglass Studios
    Mastered by Philip Gosselin

    Artwork by
    Corri-Lynn Tetz (Front & Back Cover)
    Todd Stewart (Inside Gatefold Design)
    Dave Thomas (Album layout)
    Olga Goreas ( Handwritten font)

    Track by track 

    Blackstrap
    Drums – Kevin Laing
    Bass – Olga Goreas
    Guitars – Jace Lasek, Robbie MacArthur
    Gtr Solos – Robbie MacArthur
    Synthesizers and keyboards – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas
    Vocals – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas, Sheenah Ko
    Omnichord – Jace Lasek
    Drone Commander – Jace Lasek
    Found Sounds – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas

    Raindrops
    Drums – Kevin Laing
    Bass – Olga Goreas
    Guitars – Jace Lasek
    12-String – Robbie MacArthur
    Synthesizers and keyboards – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas
    Vocals – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas, Sheenah Ko
    String and horn arrangements – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas

    Christmas Can Wait
    Drums – Kevin Laing
    Bass – Olga Goreas
    Guitars – Jace Lasek, Richard White
    Baritone guitar – Robbie MacArthur
    Synthesizers and keyboards – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas, Sheenah Ko
    Vocals – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas
    String and horn arrangements – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas
    Omnichord – Jace Lasek
    Organ drone – Welkom In De Blaak

    Our Heads, Our Hearts On Fire Again
    Drums – Kevin Laing
    Percussion – Jace Lasek, Kevin Laing
    Bass – Olga Goreas
    Guitars – Jace Lasek, Robbie MacArthur
    Baritone guitar – Robbie MacArthur
    Synthesizers and keyboards – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas
    Vocals – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas
    String and horn arrangements – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas
    Therevox – Jace Lasek

    Feuds With Guns
    Drums – Kevin Laing
    Bass – Olga Goreas
    Guitars – Jace Lasek, Robbie MacArthur
    Guitar solo – Jace Lasek
    Synthesizers and keyboards – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas, Sheenah Ko
    Vocals – Jace Lasek
    String and horn arrangements – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas

    The Dark Side of Paradise
    Drums – Kevin Laing
    Bass – Olga Goreas
    Guitars – Jace Lasek
    12-string – Robbie MacArthur
    Guitar solos – Robbie MacArthur
    Synthesizers and keyboards – Jace Lasek, Sheenah Ko
    Vocals – Jace Lasek
    Organ drone – Welkom In De Blaak

    New Revolution
    Drums – Kevin Laing
    Bass – Olga Goreas
    Guitars – Jace Lasek, Robbie MacArthur
    Guitar solo – Jace Lasek
    Synthesizers and keyboards – Sheenah Ko
    Vocals – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas, Sheenah Ko

    The Father of Time Wakes Up
    Drums – Kevin Laing, Loel Campbell
    Bass – Olga Goreas
    Guitars – Jace Lasek
    Guitar solo 1 – Robbie MacArthur
    Guitar solo 2 – Mark Cuthbertson
    Synthesizers and keyboards – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas
    Vocals – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas, Sheenah Ko
    Found sounds – Jace Lasek

    Last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings
    Drums – Kevin Laing
    Percussion – Jace Lasek, Kevin Laing
    Bass – Olga Goreas
    Guitars – Jace Lasek, Robbie MacArthur
    12-string – Robbie MacArthur
    Guitar solos – Robbie MacArthur
    Synthesizers and keyboards – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas
    Vocals – Jace Lasek
    String and horn arrangements – Jace Lasek, Olga Goreas
    Organ drone – Welkom In De Blaak

  • 'The Besnard Lakes Are the Last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings' will assuredly be a favorite for longtime fans... For those willing to put in the time listening to the whole album, the payoff will be worth it in the end.

    Glide Magazine

    The Besnard Lakes Are The Last of the Great Thunderstorm Warnings, by the Besnard Lakes: This isn’t an album, it’s an invasion, hovering over Earth like a mesmeric sci-fi symphony. Light and death are ruminated upon majestically by the Montreal psyche-rock maximalists... the Besnard Lakes has unleashed a conceptual masterpiece.

    The Globe And Mail

    On this project, The Besnard Lakes explore that darkness, that light and everything in between through a masterclass in the musical and emotional push and pull that makes great prog rock so distinctly rewarding.

    MXDWN

    The beauty and optimism of it all will leave you feeling hopeful, refreshed and ready to take on the world, as well as another listen.

    Northern Transmissions

    Thunderstorm Warnings' has enough excellence going for it that no matter how much growth they display, the record is still a delight to spend time with. Anyone that has grown to love everything Besnard Lakes excel at will be thoroughly pleased with the album... The band has something truly remarkable in them...

    Spectrum Culture

    Montreal post-rockers The Besnard Lakes used their five-year break to craft their grandest statement to date, a 71-minute hurricane of an album that justifies its length.

    My Spilt Milk

    an astonishing return
    Album of the Month at Uncut (8/10)

    The first single is "Raindrops," which combines shoegaze atmospherics and Beach Boys-eque harmonies in a widescreen sound that is signature Besnard Lakes.
    Brooklyn Vegan

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