After recently celebrating the 10th anniversary of their platinum-selling debut album, Dark Eyes , Montreal indie rockers Half Moon Run have announced they'll perform at the St. John's Arts and Culture Centre on Wednesday, July 13 at 7:30 p.m.
This was a group born between revolutions: B.C natives Conner Molander and Dylan Phillips connected with Ottawa expat Devon Portielje in the Mile End a few years after Arcade Fire had put the city on the international indie-rock map. From the moment they dropped their 2012 debut album, Dark Eyes, on Indica Records, they no longer belonged to Montreal, but to the world at large. As the album’s pulse-quickening lead single, “Full Circle,” galloped up the alternative charts in Canada, a U.S. deal with Glassnote Records landed them in the upper reaches of Billboard’s Heatseekers list, while steady BBC airplay lured the group overseas and into the welcoming embrace of Mumford and Sons’ Ben Lovett, who signed Half Moon Run to his Communion label in the UK. But as the international tour offers came rolling in (including opening stints for the Mumfords and Of Monsters and Men), the trio soon realized they would need to shore up their ranks to fully realize their widescreened sound in a live setting.
Enter Molander and Philips’ old B.C. pal Isaac Symonds, who—like the founding trio—was a talented vocalist and multi-instrumentalist, who became permanent resident of the band.
Two more full-length albums followed—2015’s Sun Leads Me On and 2019’s A Blemish in the Great Light —the latter debuting at no. 3 in Canada, their highest to date, and garnered a 2020 JUNO Award for Adult Alternative Album of the Year.
Plans for a week-long retreat gave way to an enforced international year-plus lockdown when COVID-19 hit, but Half Moon Run kept their heads above water with stopgap releases like the Seasons of Change EP (a collection of leftovers from the Blemish sessions) and their popular Covideo Sessions series on YouTube. However, behind the scenes, the band was marking the end of an era: After eight years of serving as Half Moon Run’s crucial fourth wheel, Symonds announced he was leaving the band on the most amicable of terms and the band went back to basics as a trio, complemented by a decade of recording experience that has allowed them to take control of their means of production.
The Inwards & Onwards EP’s (2021) stress-free genesis is reflected in its noticeably relaxed feel and air of effortless experimentation: the opening “How Come My Body” fuses a gentle finger-pickin’ lullaby with stalking dub rhythms, while the foggy nocturnal atmosphere of “It’s True” imagines Radiohead trapped inside the Midnight Cowboy soundtrack.
Half Moon Run have certainly come a long way—musically, spiritually, geographically—since their humble beginnings in Montreal’s Mile End. But after 10 years, three albums, hundreds of shows, and one global pandemic, Half Moon Run have truly come—in the words of their 2012 signature song—full circle.
TICKETS: $52.50 Advance | $57.50 Day of Show HST & service charge included
SHOWTIME: 7:30 pm
DATES & LOCATION:
July 13, 2022
RECOMMENDED AUDIENCE AGE: All Ages
SHOW LENGTH: TBD