Young Galaxy is shining brightly these days.
Their fourth record, Ultramarine, is one of ten albums vying for this country's highly coveted Polaris Prize. And the Montreal band couldn't be more thrilled about making the shortlist for the first time in its career.
"We are honoured and excited," explains lead singer Catherine McCandless. "It's above and beyond the validation in the work we've done, and the way we feel about it. It's so nice to know other people are liking it as well."
This all-important recognition is well deserved: Ultramarine is easily Young Galaxy's finest and most accomplished album to date.
A resplendent collection of synth-driven pop numbers, the record has earned universal acclaim with many lauding the bright, clean sound quality courtesy of Swedish producer Dan Lissvik.
Lissvik had worked with the band on a previous release, Shapeshifting, with mixing sessions taking place via Skype. This time around, however, the band flew to Sweden to work in close proximity with Lissvik.
"We knew that we wanted to be in the same space as Dan," McCandless says, "and that we wanted to be where he (Dan) would be at his best. So we thought we would go where his studio is and where his inspiration comes from."
These recording sessions were highly productive and bountiful, so much so that not all tracks make the final cut. Instead the band plans to release some bonus tracks on a forthcoming deluxe edition of Ultramarine due out this week.
Starting this week fans will also get to hear the new material live - the band is bringing the brilliant, buoyant tunes from Ultramarine to venues across the prairies, its first headlining tour of Western Canada in years.
Despite the heavy tour schedule this month, Young Galaxy will still fly to Toronto to attend and perform at the Polaris Gala on September 23rd.
And there's a strong possibility they'll leave with the starry prize.
Young Galaxy performs at the West End Cultural Centre on Wednesday September 18th.