Something else coming out of Canada that you can all cherish (and replace Celine with): Born Ruffians. Can we begin with the band name? There’s nothing I love more than the word “ruffian,” and these guys clearly agree, fit the description of “ruffian,” and probably were born that way…like feral children. The cheering, the shouting, and the Luke LaLonde sounding like he could break into a yodel at any given second—it all adds up to a musical experience that can be likened to the monkey cage at your local zoo. Okay, these guys aren’t that wild. You will realistically listen to them without getting annoyed or freaked out; in fact, they are perfect for the car ride where jumping around is more important than steering, so you can just make your poor innocent passenger take the wheel.
Born Ruffians’ first complete album, Red Yellow And Blue, came out in March 2008 and is full of your typical instruments made fantastically interesting. The first half of the album is arguably the most accessible, most tracks being driven by complex rhythms and yodel-shouting (what is this, some kind of Canadian vocal technique?). “Hummingbird” is like the band’s fight song, “I Need a Life” like the band’s anthem, and “Little Garcon” a pretty adorable love song for such a rambunctious group. This isn’t to diminish the second half of the album. On both “Hedonistic Me” and “In a Mirror” the combination of LaLonde’s higher-pitched (not quite Barry Gibb but we’re getting there) voice and the choppy melodies makes for some incredibly interesting tracks. Overall, this album will do the opposite of bore you…by the end, you’ll be shouting and clapping right along.
With Red Yellow And Blue comes music incomparable to anything else you’ll find today. There’s no “if you like Born Ruffians, you may also like this artist,“ because these guys stand alone in their sound with their wild voices and fast-changing melodies. Keep your eyes and ears open, because I have a feeling we’ll be hearing more from them in the near future! In the meantime, check out their myspace.