July Talk stormed the airwaves with the flinty radio-ready rock of their debut and the
volatile siren songs of Touch, with its sawtoothed pop + convulsing tension. For album
three, the band cracks their equilibrium open to find a thrilling new balance in
asymmetry. With their signature snarl, July Talk is back to reaffirm the cathartic power
of self-determination, in sound and spirit.
Resolute in their vision and unafraid to escape the cage, July Talk’s path has never been
through fitting in. Their music, viscerally, blisteringly hot, sliced right through the
alternative and rock charts for multiple number one singles. Their churning and fiercely
physical performances make spaces hiss and hum, spit and seethe in glorious, artful
Pray For It commits to the possibility of alternate endings in the sanctuary of humility.
The album opens with the hope-soaked ink bloom of “Identical Love,” a mix of a
distinctly 1980s brand of romanticism – gated drums + cityscape sax – with an entirely
of-the-moment ache for renewal. In opening themselves up to the unknown, the
uncomfortable and the unfamiliar, July Talk performs a radical sacrificial act, surrendering themselves to the higher powers – sacred, ecological or even intergalactic – as a way to begin again.
Black + white and vividly complex, Pray For It is about breaking patterns of action and
reaction. “Hard to break these ancient habits,” Fay sings in the hazy, balletic whirl of
“Pay For It,” the first offering from the new record. Conflict, a major theme throughout,
drives the story behind this song, a steel-toed shoegaze swoon. “Pay For It” bears
witness to the machinations of aggression as it tenderly licks those wounds.
Conflict also informs “Champagne,” a gospel-guided collaboration with Toronto artists
James Baley and Kyla Charter. One of the album’s most startling, urgent tracks, “Champagne” presents potent truths about exploitation and privilege in wincing, self-owning clarity. With the intensifying layers of Baley and Charter’s choir of two, in sound and sentiment, “Champagne,” is about greening that grass for all.
Pray For It also reckons with vulnerability as a superpower. With a wash of beach sunset
synths, “Good Enough” is about depressive spirals, and the elusiveness of light; in
unblinking hollowed helplessness, “Life of the Party” is a love song for lovers of
substances. Part surrealist thought experiment, part commentary on precarity, the idea
of lives given – and taken – to service is a connective tissue throughout this body of
work. “Governess Shadow” and “Pretender” also explore the dynamics of giving and
taking through imbalances of power, wealth and authenticity.
With Pray For It, July Talk continues to rise with purpose and poise. From the start, the
band has fostered a community of creators and collaborators on stage, on film and
among those also challenging systemic inequities. July Talk has also grown in their
roles as advocates of an urgent and fundamental music industry recalibration, through
curatorial partnerships with festivals and by defining their own parameters for safer
spaces at rock shows.
Pray For It
Produced by Burke Reid (Courtney Barnett, The Drones, Julia Jacklin),
Graham Walsh (Holy Fuck, Metz), David Plowman (Brendan Canning, Young Clancy,
Michael Rault) and Milan Sarkadi (Mute Choir, Said The Whale)
Mixed by Rob Schnapf (Beck, Cat Power, Andy Shauf)
Pray For It will be released by Sleepless Records in Canada and BMG worldwide.
July Talk is Leah Fay, Peter Dreimanis, Josh Warburton, Ian Docherty + Danny Miles.For tour dates and more visit: www.julytalk.com/