“Cherish him, cherish him, for there really is no one like him. Fantastic.” Billy Bragg
Vancouver-based Geoff Berner is well known as a highly regarded, international touring singer/songwriter, accordionist, writer, political activist and all-around weirdo. The autumn of 2017 will reinforce all those credentials at once.
Canadiana Grotesquica is something of a departure for Berner. His previous five albums have been forays into the genre of klezmer/punk. This record is more of a country-tinged singer- songwriter affair, in the style of his first full-length We Shall Not Flag Or Fail, We Shall Go On To The End.
Songs like “The Ghost of Terry Fox” and “Rule of the Road” come with a melancholy twang, due in part to the crucial role of Paul Rigby as guitarist, pedal steel player and producer. “Hustle Advisory” also features Frazey Ford on guest vocals, and violin parts throughout the album are supplied by Diona Davies, formerly of Po Girl.
A download code for the album will also be included with The Fiddler Is a Good Woman, Berner’s second novel, set to be published Oct. 14 by Dundurn Press. Berner will be touring the world following the album’s official launch on Sept. 9 at the 10th annual Accordion Noir Festival at Vancouver’s Russian Hall.