Published Apr 03, 2019Saturday the 14th follows Partner's debut, In Search of Lost Time, a breakout success that landed them on Best of 2017 lists across the board. According to the press release, the new EP "represents the first steps toward a bold new future: the listener will find the band questioning the rules and questioning themselves."
This focus on exploration sees the duo experimenting with variety of styles, from the country bop "Tell You Off," complete with a harmonica solo and farm animal noises, to the melodramatic power-pop ballad "Les ailes d'un ange."
The high point of the EP is the lead single "Long & McQuade," a hilarious love song to the Canadian music store chain. The duo come into their own on the garage rock anthem, showcasing their signature sense of humour and killer guitar chops. Josée Caron and Lucy Niles wear their national identity proudly, both with the ode to Long & McQuade, and then their bilingual piano ballad inspired by Céline Dion.
Partner have previously been defined as well by their proud queer identity, which is less obviously foregrounded on Saturday the 14th. Simply being openly gay (but not for each other) stakes out some much-needed queer space within the music industry, but part of what made Partner so interesting was their subtly subversive lyrics. (In Search of Lost Time explored anti-capitalist sentiments, in addition to their minority sexualities.) The songs off this EP can be summed up as "let's dance, also minions are cute," "weed makes you forgetful," "don't be rude," and "this music store rocks," which brings us to the final track "Les ailes d'un ange" that is either way too sincere, or a gag that neglects to let the listener in on the fun. Either way, it feels totally out of place.
Overall, it's a lighthearted, scattered little project from two talented musicians. It misses the mark on their ambitious projections, but nonetheless has some enjoyable moments. (You've Changed)