Kaia Kater “In Montreal” – features Allison Russell

And now is as good a time as any to remind ourselves what comment we made on Kaia Kater back in 2019: “Kaia Kater is an incredibly poised performer, and her songs are complicated and subtle, profound and sophisticated – what levels her music will achieve in ten years time is something to contemplate. Here in a bar in Hackney really was the future of Americana – if that’s what she wants. She could also be the future of jazz. Or she might just be one of those artists that transcends genre.”  And here’s a chance to reflect how appropriate that comment was, as ‘In Montreal’ is a distinctive piece of music – still, we’d argue, Americana, but it could tip over into some other genre with the slightest nudge, so finely balanced it is on that musical dividing line between one thing and another.

Speaking of this song Kaia Kater has said: “Simply, this is a reflection on the gravitational pull of my hometown, Montreal. I’ve left and returned so many times that it now feels like ghosts of my former selves haunt the city. During the deep winter of 2021 with its short days and long nights, I wanted to write an upbeat song about a poet feeling lost and aimless, tectonic plates stacked in their sink—a nod to Leonard Cohen, Kate & Anna McGarrigle, and all the other incredible songwriters of Montreal.

 ‘In Montreal’ is the latest single from Kaia Kater’s new album ‘Strange Medicine’ (coming May 17 on Free Dirt Records), and features Kaia with her good friend Allison Russell. The two have long called Montreal their hometown, but have complicated relationships with the city of course. The two are also Canadian with Grenadian roots (Kaia’s last album, ‘Grenades’, explored that heritage on Smithsonian Folkways). Kaia grew up with Allison’s early band, Po’ Girl, so it’s especially cool that the two are able to be together on this new single.  And two banjo players – come on, are we treating you well dear reader or are we treating you great?


About Jonathan Aird 2746 Articles
Sure, I could climb high in a tree, or go to Skye on my holiday. I could be happy. All I really want is the excitement of first hearing The Byrds, the amazement of decades of Dylan's music, or the thrill of seeing a band like The Long Ryders live. That's not much to ask, is it?
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