Constantines / Constantines - SP652
Rock ‘n’ roll has always been about transcending the banality of your everyday surroundings. The Constantines know this; it comes through in their lyrics, in their ethic, in their performances and particularly on this their debut album. When this record was first released in 2001 it was only available in their native Canada. It went on to be nominated for a Juno Award (Canada’s answer to the Grammys) and very nearly broke the record for the longest charting album in Canadian campus radio history. And it garnered universal praise from the Canadian music press: ‘…Light[s] a fire beneath the post-Fugazi underground’s ass that At the Drive-In promised but didn’t deliver. Hard to imagine Canada producing a better album this year’ Toronto Star. The response was just as glowing from those who managed to track down the record in the States: ‘The antidote for every boring and insincere rock record I’ve heard this year’ Magnet. Following the success of the Constantines’ second album (first for Sub Pop), Shine A Light (“As diverse and intriguing a record as the North American underground has produced for some time” Observer (London); “Shine A Light is truly thrilling; an inventive and addictive blend of growling riffs, frantic rhythms and deranged vocals, and it’s going to make you fall utterly head over heals for them” Kerrang!), their self-titled debut is available outside of Canada for the first time.
Released: 2004-08-10 (CD), 2004-08-10 (LP), 2009-08-12 (MP3s)
Constantines / Shine A Light - SP569
The first pressing of the The Constantines’ self-titled (and Juno Award-nominated) debut (released on Three Gut Records in 2001) was fittingly packaged so that, upon opening the red cardstock booklet, you’d find a single strike anywhere match. In an effort to not ruin the beauty and poignancy of a thing through over-explanation, suffice it to say that if your relationship with rock and roll is not fundamentally a quest for fire (elemental, transformative, consuming), you’ve missed the point. This from Magnet magazine: "They’re young offenders with sharpened teeth who make grinding, literate punk with the elasti-to-explosive guitars heard on Fugazi’s “Smallpox Champion,” the stark lyrical economy of a Vonnegut-penned newspaper obituary…" And: “The Constantines are old souls in young bodies-guys in their early 20s who sound like Joe Strummer backed by Fugazi – making music that wakes the sleeping and the dead.” Shine a Light is The Constantines’ second full-length and first for Sub Pop (Three Gut continues as the band’s home north of the border).
Released: 2003-08-19 (CD), 2003-08-19 (LP), 2009-08-12 (MP3s)
Constantines / Tournament of Hearts - SP669
Having wandered across our world’s vast oceans and mountains, having discussed the truths of love with saints and with swine, Toronto’s Constantines have returned with Tournament of Hearts, their third release for Sub Pop Records. Deep in manners, a band of gentlemen truly, this is not the telling after the kissing. These are the secrets locked away, an album heavy with the knowledge that the only truths worth telling are those truths told by lovers. Truths told in whispers and moans, truths lost and found under covers. Laid to tape amid the ghosts and wreckage of Toronto’s east end as Jeff McMurrich (Sea Snakes, Picastro, Hidden Cameras) cursed modern man’s technological alienation and Fat Bobby Matador (Oneida) wrestled the beasts, this is a record made for the chaos of days. A physical record, the thunder of battles of love. Against the immense falsehoods of the known and against the bloodless conventions of the unknown, against a dull world forever, this is an album of truth in desire. A record in filthy communion with mermaids and disorder, betrothed to the world with a sweetheart’s tender touch.
Released: October 11, 2005