SONG PREMIERE: Blue J Conjure Indie Rock Gem with Dreamy Tune “How Long Will It Take”

What does a city sound like? To some, a city’s sound is defined by its ambient noise: car horns, ambulance sirens, the grumble of a motorcycle, voices speaking over each other, the clink of outdoor dining. For others, cities provide ample inspiration for great art. This is the case for Justice McLellan, lead singer of Canadian indie-rock outfit Blue J, who drew significant inspiration from spending the last 10 years in Vancouver on his band’s gorgeously arranged debut album, A Sign Of Good Luck

Just as you can hear Glasgow in the music of indie torchbearers Belle & Sebastian, not to mention New York City in the music of The Strokes and The Walkmen, Blue J’s A Sign Of Good Luck is a romantic reflection of its urban surroundings, from Vancouver’s myriad parks, beaches and gardens to its ubiquitous glass buildings.

Recorded live over five days at Afterlife Studio with bandmates Lindsay Sjoberg, Mark Whiting, and Adam Fink, plus producer John Raham (Destroyer, Frazey Ford), A Sign Of Good Luck also marks McLellan’s official reentry into band life. “I just love being in a band playing music, which is what Blue J is to me,” he says. “I also think it’s an amazing thing to collaborate with people and to have their musical imprint. I have my own imperfections, which makes me sound like who I am, but so does everybody else in the band. With A Sign Of Good Luck, there’s almost no overdubs. You can hear a guitar note that didn’t quite make it. It’s all there. To me, I‘ve always liked that in music, where you go, ‘Huh, they didn’t fix that.’ Like, hey, you could do that too.”

Just as A Sign Of Good Luck is a love letter to Vancouver, it’s also a look at a life in transition. Written in the wake of a long-term relationship ending, the album offers a peek into McLellan’s psyche as he learns to spend more time with himself and learns to find hope in new beginnings. “Peaks and valleys in your life are inevitable. It’s part of our human experience,” he says. It’s about finding a good luck sign, then keeping that optimism alive.”

Today Glide is excited to premiere the standout track “How Long Will It Take.” Dreamy and mellow, the song finds the band sharing lyrics that speak to self-reflection. The song builds slowly into a catchy peak as the band lays down harmonies that are somehow both depressing and uplifting at the same time. Almost as if taking place in an altered state, the song is a true indie rock gem with a big shining chorus.

The band reflects on the inspiration behind the tune:

“This tune came together after an important relationship in my life ended. Walking around the city, watching movies, reading in bed and most things I enjoyed with that person lost their sparkle as I was processing their absence. It’s about being on your own, grief and feeling through the moments of self-reflection that aren’t always easy.”


Photo credit: Annaliese Feininger

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