By Mar Sellars
VANCOUVER — Duotang, once heralded as Winnipeg’s best-dressed band, are back after a 15-year hiatus. Known for their sharp hooks and even sharper dressed attire consisting mostly of tailored suits, the infamous indie duo often came across more like an old married couple than a band. Duotang’s original run went from 1995 to 2002 until, as legend goes, an argument over pizza or chicken led to the band’s initial break-up and long hiatus. Or maybe it was just that they had run their course, releasing three albums on Mint Records, touring extensively across Canada, the United States and Europe. You can’t ask for much more from a Canadian indie band. After the break-up, drummer Sean Allum went back to school and bassist Rod Slaughter went on to front Novillero and a few other projects.
In December 2014, at the request of Mint Records, they reunited for a show in Vancouver and then followed it up with a hometown Winnipeg show. The excitement of playing live again led the duo back into the jam space. “There was no goal, we just started jamming,” says Slaughter. And without any pressure or goals in mind they just happened to write a whole new album.
“We could have made more money if we called it a reunion tour, we could have played more shows, because people would think this is the only time to see us, the price of the ticket goes up and you get more crowds. But when you say we’re back and we are making a new album, people think I won’t catch them this time, I might catch them next time. It’s a continuation.” Sean Allum explains.
So the reunion is definitely not about the money. Fifteen years after their last release, Duotang’s newest album New Occupation is being released on October 14th via Stomp records.
We at BeatRoute.ca are pleased to premiere new song “The Mentors.” A song as Slaughter says is about, “the musicians we grew up listening to, it’s an ode to rock and roll.” The chorus goes: “When I need some inspiration, hey, perhaps some new direction, hey, it’s the mentors who are guiding me.”
“It’s definitely not about money. We don’t make money, we didn’t make money back then, how could it be about money?” – Rod Slaughter
Fans of Duotang can give a big shout out to the mentors for guiding Rod & Sean back into the studio and, like the song proclaims, “everything is going to be alright.”
Be sure to catch Duotang on their Canadian tour this fall and winter. We can guarantee there will be a lot of sweat, suits and rock ‘n’ roll.
Duotang perform at The Palomino on October 28 (Calgary), 9910 on October 29 (Edmonton), Canmore Hotel on November 2 (Canmore), The Biltmore Cabaret on November 3 (Vancouver) Copper Owl on November 4 (Victoria) and The Good Will on November 12 (Winnipeg). To purchase New Occupation, head to stomprecords.com. Stay tuned to BeatRoute.ca later this month for Duotang’s interview with Letters From Winnipeg editor Juljiana Capone, which will also appear in BeatRoute’s Alberta October print edition.9910, AB, Alberta, BC, Biltmore Cabaret, British Columbia, Canmore Hotel, Copper Owl, Duotang, Good Will Social Club, Manitoba, MB, New Occupation, Palomino, The Mentors