Ought has been burning with a strong and steady flame since flickering to life in Montreal in 2011. Holed up in a shared apartment that doubled as their rehearsal space, the four band members self-recorded a first EP and played their first show in these domestic confines, then busted out into the city’s loft circuit, and into the city streets during the Printemps d’Erable Quebec student general strike, in 2012. These inspired months of mass mobilization against neo-liberal austerity measures galvanized a wide and inspiring range of agit-prop expression in Montreal, and indelibly shaped the emerging sound, vision and social mandate of Ought. Guitarist/vocalist Tim Beeler, who previously had been writing poetry and folk music, drew new energy from electrification/amplification and from solidarity/protest alike; his declarative, observational vocal style ranges from wide-eyed to worried, but never submits to cool irony or emotional detachment. Ought’s earnest, stately and exuberant post-punk is dextrous, deliberate, unfussy and fluid, with debts to Cap’n Jazz, The Feelies, Lungfish, Gang Of Four and early Talking Heads, among many others. The band shifts from sharp angles and stuttering counterpoint to softer edges and chiming flow, with an economy of elements and fidelity to their basic 4-piece constitution. The instrumental interplay is consistently whipsmart, supple and deceptively simple. Beeler’s speak-singing can give way to melancholic melodic croons and ragged, desperate yelps, always driven by sincerity of feeling and connection to his subject matter, whether that’s the conundrum of our fractured interiority, or communion with others in our fractured social space – or, for the most part, both.
Ought are a righteous and humble young band, fiercely dedicated to grassroots organizing and artmaking, taking as self-evident the inseparability of politics and aesthetics; we are proud and excited to be releasing their debut full-length. More Than Any Other Day is the result of a week of recording and mixing at Montreal’s Hotel2Tango with
engineer Radwan Moumneh (Suuns, Matana Roberts, Jerusalem In My Heart) in November 2013; the album replaces the band’s previously self-released 5-song Bandcamp EP of the same name, comprised of a separate set of recordings.