Photo by Ben Kaye
Though they’ve only been together for a little over a year, you don’t get much closer to the Montréal music scene than you do with Nancy Pants. (Believe me, I’ve tried.) Bassist Adam Waito has fronted Adam and the Amethysts as well as working in the concert promoting biz; drummer Jeremy MacCuish is also a member of Parlovr and Smokes; and frontwoman Ohara Hale came up making poster art for bands around town, including her own outfit MORI. Mere months after forming, they captured their dynamic lo-fi take on ’60s garage rock with a pop edge for last year’s swiftly-recorded debut LP, Totally Nancy Pants.
Even as a fairly young band, they’ve already made a name for themselves up north and are looking to break through the borders into the US. The invasion begins today — Hale’s birthday, no less — with the release of a pair of new tracks, “Mother Mary” and “PS”. Recorded during what we’ll call the Dolphin Sessions, the tracks demonstrate the two legs of Nancy Pants.
“Mother Mary” is a brewing swirl of pop, something at once easy-going and anxious, like the expansion of consciousness. “You meditate/ You don’t know why/ You meditate to get you high,” Hale sings airily before breaking out into a barrages of “ahs”. At the same time, the instruments come together for a rising bridge, with Waito’s walking bass leading the track smoothly from its moments of wonder to its bouts of insanity. “PS”, meanwhile, tramples with a kicking punk foot. Here, Hale yelps more than sings, delivering punchy lyrics over her own slashing guitar work. MacCuish does wonders with his limited kit on both tracks, making the most of just one cymbal and a heavy-footed bass drum to produce improbable highs on “Mother Mary” and clamorous clatter on “PS”.
Both songs can be heard in the dolphin-friendly visualize below, or as separate tracks via the Bandcamp player. Take a listen, and wish Hale a happy birthday.