I love close harmonies. I’m sure it will certainly be said enough on this blog, but I’d like to emphasize my point. I LOVE CLOSE HARMONIES. Canadian bands seem to have a penchant for such vocal majesty, especially those of the indie-folk genre.
There are no better close harmonies on the planet Earth than those sung by the duo Tegan & Sara. Why, you ask? Because they’re literally identical twins. If that wasn’t enough, their melodies are catchy, their lyrics refined and smart, and their guitar harmonies and arrangements are all put together by Chris Walla (at least on the last couple of albums). The White Stripes covered these guys, and everyone from Passion Pit to The Rentals has remixed them! Hell yes.
Another excellent close-harmony folk band from north of the border is The Wailin’ Jennys. This, kids, is REAL folk music, the kind that isn’t just Scrubs singer-songwriter with an acoustic and a gainy mic plug-in. The YouTube track is off their first album, released with vocalist Cara Luft, not Annabelle Chvostek–who takes her place to similarly excellent results on the other albums–on one of the three parts, practically indistinguishable from one another among the closeness of the harmonies. The YouTube track is rollicking, whereas the download track is hauntingly beautiful. They have serious versatility.
Last, but not least, is a band that I had the pleasure of opening for (as a guest of another band) in Vancouver this January . They’re all super nice, and their live performance skills ain’t something to scoff at. No downloads, but they’ve got a Juno award, which makes them about 5% more Canadian. This track is super joyful and makes you feel all warm and cuddly inside. Meet The Good Lovelies.