Dragonette keep things interesting and emotionally real for fourth LP

By Erin Jardine
Dragonette remain a bit of an enigma in the fast-paced world of electronic music. Photo: Gabe Ayala

Dragonette remain a bit of an enigma in the fast-paced world of electronic music.
Photo: Gabe Ayala

VANCOUVER — “[Singing] is the only thing I’ve considered doing, I’ve always sung. It’s lucky that it worked out,” Martina Sorbara reflects on the blast-off career she has shared with Dan Kurtz and Joel Stouffer as Canadian three-piece electro-pop/indie band Dragonette. Royal Blues is their fourth LP, and perhaps the biggest departure from Dragonette’s norm. The beautiful, large pixelated tears adorning Sorbara’s face on the album cover is no small hint of some emotional themes. In Sorbara’s words, these “came from life experience. The only way I write is from what’s happening and what was happening was some pretty hard times. My emotional self lives inside and the only way it really comes out is songwriting.”

With the attention-deficit trend of music, the preference of singles and other channels of releasing music over full length albums within the electronic world, I asked about Sorbara’s relationship with the mediums of releasing music, to which she replied, “There is the question of what is the point of waiting until you have ten songs to release a full-length. I think Dragonette is a little bit outside of that world. We’ve written such a range of music on our albums, I think what our fans appreciate about us is our quirky album tracks and the weird left field shit that comes up on the album, and that’s important to us. The way we identify who we are is by that range I don’t think we’d be the same band, or interesting to ourselves.”

Amidst the personal difficulties facing Dragonette, the phoenix of the tribulation is Royal Blues. The process changed, but the bouncy beats enjoyed by electronic and instrumental lovers alike are firmly in place within the album. “The process of writing [this] record included more songwriting with others. Collaborating was something I hadn’t done a lot of before. I spent a lot of time travelling writing with basically strangers. Before it was more of a home studio writing process with [Kurtz]. The music this time wasn’t specific for Dragonette, I wanted to see what came out of it.”

Dragonette play the Pyramid Cabaret in Winnipeg on November 16, Louis’ Pub in Saskatoon on November 17, the Starlite Room in Edmonton on November 18, the Gateway in Calgary on November 19, the Sapphie in Kelowna on November 22, the Imperial Theatre in Vancouver on November 23 and Sugar Nightclub in Victoria on November 24.

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