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Carbon Dating Service
As “the funnest 10 person band ever” (Chris Kelly, CBC Radio 3), Saskatoon’s Carbon Dating Service has a lot more going for it than just a clever name. Their ambitious and sprawling self-titled debut, released in June 2006, earned the band a comfortable seat on campus and community radio charts nationwide, while the taste-makers at Fluxblog affectionately described their sound as “layers of warm, gentle instrumentation piled on like blankets”. This cozy atmosphere of triumphant pop symphonies, quiet country gems and raucous club bangers provides a perfect arsenal for doing battle with the shivering winters of their hometown.
One year later, Saskatoon’s spring thaw flooded Carbon Dating Service out of the basement with Polyentendrii, an album that bobs on its very own raft built of duct-taped trombones, flugelhorn, harp, viola, synthesizers, thumb piano, banjo and whirligigs. Exploring their backgrounds in classical, jazz, cute things, lo-fi indie rock and Dungeons & Dragons, Carbon Dating Service spent the winter feverishly disassembling and reassembling songs like malfunctioning electronic appliances. The result is eight unforgettable compositions, with loving attention paid to Masterpiece Theatre flourishes, arm-linking choral interludes, catchy baroque canons and the odd snow-melting explosion.
The eight-member “geek rock” orchestra travelled in its trademark school bus to venues across Eastern Canada in the summer of 2008, performing material from their third album Reliquiae. Included in the tour was a CBC Radio 3 In-Session performance which is available at radio3.cbc.ca and also aired on CBC Bold. CDS also just taped a performance at the Broadway Theatre in Saskatoon alongside The Deep Dark Woods, Farideh, and Soso as a part of CBC's Concerts on Demand (On A Cold Road) series in February, 2009.
Polyentendrii forms a lyrical weave of myth and fact, sketching indelible images of solitary sea mammals, galactic phenomena and echoes of poltergeists in secondhand furniture. Melodic elements both gentle and triumphant follow in these wonderfully imaginative adventures, gleefully careening off the rails laid before them, only to find equally comfortable footing on the next set of tracks.
Carbon Dating Service
Carbon Dating Service tunes often begin as tinkly folk songs, featuring harp or keys along with plaintive vocals. Then the songs morph into full-on rockers with barreling drums, cymbal crashes, and both guitars and horns blaring. It doesn’t try to be, but it is triumphant music.
- The Saskatoon Star Phoenix
- Sea Moose from Polyentendrii (11.4 MB)
- Light Up The Synchrotron from Polyentendrii (12.0 MB)
- Lazerbear from Carbon Dating Service (7.0 MB)
- Dead Dogs Love Us Still from Carbon Dating Service (3.0 MB)
- Clap Your Awkward Hands (1.9 MB)
Lazerbear ContestIn the spring of 2006, CDS held a contest to see which of their fans could design the best album art. The winner's design was featured on their debut album, released in the summer of 2006.
Here is a diagram of the required elements for the cover: (click to enlarge)