Lovers talk

We Were Lovers reveals plans for their new album

The self-managed band We Were Lovers gets a little hometown help. Last month, they received a $10,000 grant from Rawlco Radio, a local radio station in their hometown of Saskatoon. Vocalist and keyboardist Elsa Gebremichael said the money would go towards recording their upcoming album.

The $10,000 came out of Project 10K20, Rawlco’s $1 million initiative supporting independant musicians across the province. The station awarded 20 artists with the prize — $10,000 every year for four years.

“Unfortunately, we still have to work to keep the bills paid,” Gebremichael said. “That’s the goal though, to be able to devote a hundred percent of our time to our music.” Gebremichael and bandmate Ash Lamothe both work at Saskatoon’s Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon.

The pop-rock duo recorded a self-titled EP with New York producer Chris Coady last year, after which they decided to self-produce their debut album. Despite being incredibly grateful for Rawlco’s support, Gebremichael said the extra money hasn’t changed their decision.

“We don’t need a high budget studio with a lot of money behind us,” Gebremichael said. “We still want to stick with doing it ourselves.”

While on tour this month, the band plans to record in unconventional places, like barns and open fields. Their full-length debut is set for release in spring 2012.

Gebremichael said the album has a new upbeat sound. Songs destined for their new album will be previewed on their tour that starts today in Winnipeg, and documented for posts on their Myspace and Facebook pages.

Originally a six-person line-up, We Were Lovers has shortened its roster to two. According to Gebremichael, the biggest difference with the two-person set up is their songwriting.

“It’s less of a rock and roll show and more of a refined pop, dance, party vibe,” Gebremichael said. “[Before] there were more ideas in the mix and we would jam those out. Whereas now that it’s just the two of us we can pay attention to more detail.”

We Were Lovers split because of members’ families and personal commitments that took priority over the band. However, Gebremichael said there is a positive aspect to the departures. Gebremichael and Lamothe are romantically involved.

“I think it’s probably changed for the better,” Gebremichael said. “Imagine being with the person that you truly care about and that you love as girlfriend or boyfriend, husband or wife, and being able to do what you love to do with that person, it’s kind of the perfect scenario.

“Music wise, we’ve always connected musically but I just feel like the fact that we’re in a relationship enhances the ability to be a hundred percent honest with each other and not hold anything back.”

We Were Lovers play the Mansion on Oct. 13 at 9 p.m.

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