Royal Canoe’s album Today We’re Believers is a fascinating mix of different sounds that veers from soothing ambient electric one moment to high energy indie-pop the next. African drum beats, violin symphonies, plucky acoustic guitar rhythms and plenty of electronic sounds, the range of instruments brought to bear produce a wide range of songs across the entire album. Whether it’s hypnotic pounding beats or oddly captivating warping and bopping electric, straight-forward pop vocals or high-pitched choruses, Royal Canoe’s tracks are continually fun and surprising.
The six-piece Winnipeg ensemble have produced an album that doesn’t dip into different genres, it picks them up and shoves them in your face. What should be a jarring change from indie-pop or electric into R&B and soul, blended with hints of jazz, is an exciting musical exploration that draws you in the further and further you get into the album. The energy slowly builds from the first song, indie-pop “Today We’re Believers,” up to the radically different R&B “Button Fumbla,” dabbles in a little funk for “Show Me Your Eyes.” Then the album moves onto deep grinding vocals and heavy drum beats in “Nightcrawlin.”
I don’t consider myself an electric or pop fan — I prefer sticking to jazz and alternative or indie rock — but I got caught up in Today We’re Believers and wasn’t let go until the very last song. I found many of the songs a little tiring by the end of each track, but when the next song came on, I was hooked all over again, exploring each new sound. No matter what kind of music you typically listen to, give Today We’re Believers a try. There is bound to be a song that pulls you in too.