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Five Roses by The Weather Holds

Montreal, a city known for its vibrant arts scene and rich history, has given birth to yet another musical marvel: The Weather Holds. This supergroup, the brainchild of the prodigious Montreal-based producer and composer, Devon Bate, has recently unveiled their debut LP, ‘You Couldn’t Ask For a More Beautiful Day’. This album is not just a collection of songs, but a tapestry of memories, emotions, and stories that transport listeners to a different time and place.

The LP is a delicate blend of Bate’s folk roots and the electroacoustic influences from his extensive musical training. It evokes a sense of nostalgia, reminiscent of days spent busking in Winnipeg, the meticulous selection of CDs for long bus rides, and memories enveloped in fog that resonate with the sounds of experimental country and the poignant aroma of forest fire smoke.

The standout track, “Five Roses”, is a heartfelt ode to Montreal and its thriving community. This song is not just a melody; it’s a gathering. With over 12 musicians contributing their unique sounds and voices, it feels like a musical festival in itself. The chorus, a simple yet profound line, “I wrote a song”, is sung in unison, creating a sense of unity and camaraderie. The song offers listeners a peek into the collaborative spirit of the album. From Beatrice Ferreira’s fiddle explorations to Alex Rand’s captivating banjo solo and Jean-Michel Blais’ improvisations, every note tells a story.

Bate, in discussing the album, touches upon the myriad themes it encapsulates – from nostalgia and heartbreak to bicycles and rosacea. But the overarching inspiration, he reveals, is his beloved community in Montreal. “As time goes on I’ve become an increasingly rare minority as an anglo who moved here for university but never left. The biggest reason I’ve been able to stay here and make a life off art is thanks to the community around me,” he shares. This sentiment of gratitude and mutual support is palpable throughout the album.

Devon Bate’s illustrious career is peppered with covert contributions to contemporary Canadian music, theatre, and dance. As the genius behind Juno and Polaris prize-winning albums, and award-winning dance and theatre productions, his influence is undeniable. The Weather Holds is a testament to his versatility and vision, bringing together the talents of artists like Common Holly, Jean-Michel Blais, Jeremy Dutcher, and composer Beatrice Ferreira.

‘You Couldn’t Ask For a More Beautiful Day’ is more than just an album; it’s an experience. It’s a journey through memories, a celebration of community, and a testament to the power of collaboration. The Weather Holds invites listeners to be a part of this journey, to find a piece of themselves in the melodies, and to be swept away by the magic of “Five Roses”.