A GIRL IN TEEN CITY, DUE OUT MAY 26 VIA STELLA RECORDS
PHOTO CREDIT : Heather Pollock // DOWNLOAD HIGH-RES
From kicking down gravel strewn alleys to evenings tinged with salt air, Oh Susanna’s new album A Girl In Teen City, traverses to the most personal place yet: a conjured, vivid past. Searching for identity is the hallmark of youth, and Vancouver in the 1980s was a place on the verge of knowing.
Due out May 26, on A Girl In Teen City, Oh Susanna (aka, Suzie Ungerleider) discovers what it means to be undone by love, the exuberant freedom under the cover of night, and music bursting with riotous rebellion. “Trying to find out who she is while trying to be something she isn’t,” says Ungerleider. “Falling in love, getting drunk, having her heart broken, hanging out with friends in bedrooms, basements and parking lots, sneaking into shows in burnt out warehouses, watching the waves, walking home over bridges and railroad tracks in all that endless rain.” Like a coming of age novel, A Girl In Teen City, is both piercingly specific and exhilaratingly familiar. No matter where you grew up, or where you live, the songs will bring you home.
Today, Oh Susanna shares the first single “Tickets On The Weekend” which “tells the true story of us West Side brats gearing up to see our favourite band, DOA, at the New York Theatre over on the East Side of Vancouver,” says Ungerleider. “Our plans are foiled by some undercover cops busting us for buying liquor. They call our parents and they pick us up and all our bravado is deflated. I wanted to capture our excitement of being immersed in the punk scene but also reveal the delightful drama of us soft middle class kids pretending to be tough and cool. The clincher is that I convinced my Dad to buy me a ticket to the DOA show the following night so my eight bucks wouldn’t be wasted. Talk about brat!"
A Girl In Teen City reunites Ungerleider with producer Jim Bryson. The pair collaborated on her previous release Namedropper, an album featuring the songs of Canada’s top songwriters written specifically for Oh Susanna to interpret. This time, with the urging by her friend and co-conspirator, Bryson, she embarked on a time machine to visit her teenage self in a sleepy port town that she thought no one had ever heard of.
From cheeky rock pop to quietly beautiful love songs, A Girl In Teen City reflects Oh Susanna’s songwriting breadth. Her brilliant vocals float through the sensuous instrumentation to create a cinematic soundscape. The album finds Ungerleider working with longtime friends and musicians Eli Abrams on bass, Cam Giroux on drums, Gord Tough on guitar, and Jim Bryson on guitar and keyboards. Guest harmony vocalists include Holly McNarland, Gabrielle Giguere, Ungerleider’s sister Jessie and niece Sofia. Drummer Paul Brennan makes an appearance on the shiny scrappy pop song “My Boyfriend”, a song about being a girl on the sidelines watching a failed high school band rehearsal – a band where Paul himself was a member.
“This record, Suzie’s most vulnerable, captures that time when you have so much emotion and no where to put it,” relates Bryson. “It’s like leaving a movie, awash in feelings and with a new understanding so that your world almost made sense. But if you walked through your door at home it would all go away…so you sit outside just for a little while. It transports me.”
The JUNO Award nominated and Genie Award winning Canadian songstress began performing as Oh Susanna in the mid-1990s, crafting a persona that matched the timeless qualities of her music, sounds that drew from the deep well of early 20th Century folk, country and blues, yet rooted in her finely-honed storytelling skills.
A GIRL IN TEEN CITY TRACKLIST
02 Wolf Boy
03 Lucky Star
04 My Boyfriend
05 The Darkroom At The School
06 Getting Ready
07 Tickets On The Weekend
08 Walked All The Way Home
09 Waiting For The Blossoms
11 Puget Sound
12 My Old Vancouver