New Canyons: Heavy Water

Chicago's New Canyons release their anticipated third full length, Heavy Water, on April 30th, 2021 through their new label home, Feeltrip Records. Andrew Marrah and Adam Stilson mold the darker parts of post punk and shoegaze into something which is all around very easy to appeal, and the entire record continues the band's long-established canny genre mixture.

The album's title track, Heavy Water, is another easy to absorb and distinctly sentimental new wave home run with an extra dark feel on the model of the band's character. The album is based on themes of darkness, existential anxiety and uncertainty, and both its first singles, Blackest and No Shame, expressed these notions without having to sound as harsh as the subjects suggested, instead they both came across rather palatable, easy to take in, and demonstrative of the duo's consistently sharp sound and powerful productions.

Tracks like Post Nothing and Adult Education could have easily been selling points and good examples of the duo's pull, and they both come bearing the most of that new romantic feel which copiously exists in the rest of the album. Also convincing singles lie in the drive of the pulsating Spirit 83 and the hard punching rhythmicality of Breathe on which the industrial element is more perceptible.

New Canyons appeared rather skilled in their earlier releases, and it's safe to say that they have moreover evolved, as time has enrooted not only their sound, but also their ability to craft a set of songs with high levels of cohesion, in such a way where levelness between genres, sentiments and moods is totally preserved. The band gives every indication of being poised and level-headed for the album's entirety, as leveled as the mixture of the few styles which they handle well.

This contradiction between the conceptual bitterness and the music's natural duende is best expressed in the devastating, yet, snappy closer, Every City, which sets the seal on New Canyons having another good one under wraps.

Feeltrip Records

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