Fall of Romance – Imaginary Cities

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I was smitten with Imaginary Cities upon hearing a few songs from their debut album, Temporary Resident, in 2011. Since then, they’ve been nominated for the Polaris Music Prize, toured with The Pixies and won the award for best pop album at the Western Canada Music Awards. Not too shabby for a duo—multi-instrumentalist Rusty Matyas (the Waking Eyes/the Weakerthans) and Marti Sarbit on vocals—that apparently formed between sets at The Cavern in Winnipeg. For their sophomore album, Fall of Romance, Imaginary Cities recruited acclaimed producer Howard Redekopp (Tegan and Sara, Said The Whale, The New Pornographers). The 12 new tracks also feature some creative recording locales, such as Rushing River Provincial Park. The songs have more depth, and incorporate piano and horns which creates a more sophisticated sound than their earlier material. Sarbit’s voice is soulful, powerful and distinct and lends itself perfectly to endearing melodies, such as those found in “Chasing the Sunset.” And while the album represents a change of pace, change is good!

-Michelle McChristie

Rating: ★★★½☆