I would understand if Sam Roberts feels he was born in the wrong time and place. His accessible, smartly-produced, effortlessly melodic brand of rock’n’roll would’ve been all over the radio 40 years ago. Today, such music struggles for air. And it’s not like SRB is selling nostalgia; their songs have as crisp and contemporary a sound as music can have in 2014 while making no effort to pander to the EDM crowd. Good thing these guys happen to be from Canada, where they have a good strong following, and where popular taste remains admirably catholic, at least compared to what goes on here in the U.S.
“We’re All In This Together,” in any case, is an assured piece of quasi-funky neo-psychedelia, complete with ear-grabbing guitar licks, a brain-sticking chorus, and the buoyant vibe of a quintet still happy to be playing together. (I love, as one example, how the spiffy lyric “It’s a phenomenon/That goes on and on” [1:23] is so casually offered and moved on from; this is a band used to having tricks up its sleeve.) While the verses sound like a sped-up retake of David Essex’s “Rock On” (not a bad thing!), the song breaks open on the unexpectedly aspirational chorus, which—neat trick—encourages joining in both literally and figuratively, working as an almost touching reminder in our hyper-partisan times. I mean sheesh, yes. We are: in this together. How oblivious or narcissistic do you have to be to disregard this most basic truth? And sorry. Didn’t mean to get all soapboxy. It’s just a pop song. Have fun.
“We’re All In This Together” comes from the fifth Sam Roberts Band album, entitled Lo-Fantasy, which was released in February on Paper Bag Records, but lacked any free and legal downloads until recently. You can grab the song above, as usual, or download it via SoundCloud. The band was featured previously on Fingertips in 2006.