Published Aug 27, 2020It's been too long since we've been able to pile into cozy venues to watch bands play the hits. That's why Exclaim! has teamed up with Dan Burke (with the support of the City of Toronto and Great Lakes Brewery) for the Class of T.O. video series, featuring Toronto bands hitting the Monarch Tavern stage to cover their favourite songs (with social distancing in place, of course). Earlier this week, we saw Witchrot's Lea Reto cover Mazzy Star; up now are For Jane covering Blur.
For Jane are a Toronto-based quintet helmed by Natalie Panacci and Julia Wittmann. "Blur are one of our favourite bands. We especially love Damon Albarn, and Julia happened to have his haircut. Julia is obsessed with Damon Albarn," said the band in a statement. "We chose 'Girls and Boys' and 'Beetlebum' because they're our favourite Blur hits that are closest to our sound as For Jane. It would have been hard for us to pull off something like 'Song 2' (especially without an audience). They are also two very different songs, so it was nice to have some contrast."
Though For Jane have stayed relatively low-profile over the last few months, the band members have been keeping busy with their own endeavours. Say the band about their lockdown-induced endeavours, "Throughout the pandemic, Julia recorded and released a collaborative cover EP with her partner Jesse Crowe called Two Gays Shoegaze. The pair also recorded an original EP (yet to be released), and Julia finally finished a solo project (called Loganism) she had on the back burner for months." Wittmann and Crowe also covered Portishead for Class of T.O., which will be released on September 8.
As for the other members, "Natalie has been listening to a lot of music gaining inspiration for our new album. Brad [Connor], our drummer, did a huge amount of personal practice, listening to a new record every couple of days. Zach [Stuckey], our bassist, invested a lot of time into production and continued practicing guitar, his main instrument. He went up north for a month when quarantine started and did a lot of writing and reading. Candice [Ng], our keyboardist, currently living in Japan, spent a lot of time singing karaoke at home alone and listening to Japanese indie bands."
Moving forward, however, the band members are getting ready to focus on For Jane again: "We're getting ready to release new music! We haven't released music since 2018 and have 10 songs that are almost ready to go. Expect new music and visuals from us early in the new year."
Watch For Jane perform "Girls and Boys" and "Beetlebum" at the Monarch Tavern below, and stay tuned for more performances coming soon, including Mother Tongues covering Broadcast on Tuesday, September 1.