“We’re Very Proud Of What We Have Created Here”- The Triumphant Return Of New Jacobin Club
By Will Yannacoulias
Photos by Aaron Brown Photography
As pandemic restrictions were lifted last year many indie artists rushed back to the stage, eager to reconnect with audiences and share new material. Saskatoon's horror-punk veterans New Jacobin Club, long known for walking a line between theatre and music, were surprisingly absent from that spotlight. Their icy silence was finally shattered in September as the group announced that their long-anticipated album Empire Of Dis was ready for release and would be unveiled in spooky style with a Halloween live performance.
The October 28th release party at Amigos Cantina for Empire Of Dis was a welcome return from a troupe celebrated for their exciting stage show. All the macabre mayhem of New Jacobin Club's classic circus were on display; fire eating and freak shows, sacrificial offerings and showers of sparks. Painted lips sneered through an electric 14 song set, including seven tracks from the new album and four choice covers. A packed-house audience of costumed fans pressed against the stage, passionately cheering on a set of songs that overshadowed the theatrics, makeup and garb.
The audience's enthusiasm for the new material performed at the release show was warranted; Empire Of Dis is an exciting, dynamic record, well worth the wait. Musically New Jacobin has always sat comfortably at the intersection of Horror Punk, Goth Rock and classic old school Heavy Metal. Like the Misfits or Motörhead but more playful and fun, the band's signature sound has always been unique yet highly listenable. The songs on Empire of Dis are in the same vein as New Jacobin Club's earlier material but more developed, with memorable melodies, tighter chemistry, more satisfying complex arrangements. Thrash-tinged stomps such as "In Crimson Snow" and "Gloriana Engine" share space with gothic epic tracks such as "The Priestess" and "What Is The Night" or the punk swagger of the titular "Empire Of Dis" or fan favourite "Behind The Veil". The production is the best yet on a New Jacobin Club album, open and rich, lending the songs the majesty and drama they deserve. More than ever the studio has captured the eclectic energy and frantic fun of New Jacobin Club's infamous live show.
"This album has literally been 3 years in the making" The Horde told NSMZ. "Something happened during that time… without the ability to perform live, we really got to sharpen our skills. Once or twice a week a couple of us would get together and just run song parts we wanted to improve upon. I think you can hear it on the album - the entire band levelled up. The precision, the delivery, the songwriting.. we are very proud of this one. I am proud of my bandmates and what we have created here.
Unavailable on streaming platforms or in stores, Empire of Dis is available to purchase directly from the band here https://newjacobinclub.com/empire-of-dis-pre-order