Master of Reinvention to Hit Apollo Stage

By Melanie Larson

Hailing from Welland, Ontario, Daniel Romano is an accomplished musician, poet, visual artist, and producer whose many talents have helped solidify his role in the Canadian music scene. His seemingly inexhaustible creative drive has led him to produce eight full length albums in an eight year timespan, three of which were released in one year. His sprawling discography has garnered him long list considerations for the 2011 and 2013 Polaris Music Prizes as well as two Juno Award Nominations in 2014 and 2016. He’s collaborated musically with the likes of Julie Doiron and City and Colour, as well as produced album art for the latter.  

Romano is often pegged as a country artist, but his music goes far beyond the constraints of genre. His songs take risks, leading you in one melodic, familiar direction before taking sharp turns into distortion, sudden conclusions, and unconventional instrumentation. Even his most western material – with slide guitars and deep, twangy vocals abound – commits to a classic honky-tonk sound without coming off as kitschy. Meanwhile, Mosey and Modern Pressure depart from his generic confinements, by instead channeling eccentric rock styles of the 60s with hints of psychedelia and theatrical baroque pop. 

In November of 2018, Romano released Finally Free, an album which he has described as coming to him in a flash of “clarity,” wherein the songs essentially wrote themselves. Immediately following this prophetic burst of inspiration, he rushed home to record the album on a four-track tape machine. The result is yet another reinvention. It’s a dive into a folk-oriented sound that wraps itself around Romano’s tortured vocals and elevates his songwriting to new heights. 

Fresh off a European tour, Daniel Romano and his backing band, The Outfit, are now heading off for a four show Canadian stint. The brief tour will bring them to Thunder Bay for a show at The Apollo on July 17. For more information, visit the event page on the official Daniel Romano Facebook.