BOARDS OF CANADA – TOMORROW’S HARVEST

Words: MAISIE RIDGWAY
June 11, 2013

News of this arcane album dripped to the public via a series of perplexing ads. The first arrived on record store day: the day of reckoning for Tomorrow’s Harvest if you will. Stores received a basket of enigmatic, one-sided vinyl pressed with only a 30 second recording of a 6-digit number. The vinyl, dropped into […]


News of this arcane album dripped to the public via a series of perplexing ads. The first arrived on record store day: the day of reckoning for Tomorrow’s Harvest if you will. Stores received a basket of enigmatic, one-sided vinyl pressed with only a 30 second recording of a 6-digit number. The vinyl, dropped into the laps of a lucky few, ignited a viral frenzy, further fuelled by BOARDS OF CANADA’s following campaign. Incognito adverts, barcodes and source codes momentarily flashed in obscure corners of the media before trickling through the digital stratosphere, eventually amalgamating in six codes that when entered into a website, disclosed and confirmed the future release of a new BoC album.

The duo’s new album celebrates their penchant for industrial and foreboding sounds. Motifs evoking sci-fi and dystopian fiction are just a couple that feature throughout Tomorrow’s Harvest. The album is born into the public eye – eight years after their last release – covered in a mysterious ectoplasm. Try typing the title of the album as a web address, for example. You’ll soon discover that instead of leading to new information on the album, the address links to a website specialising in the sale of preparatory products for the end of the world.

Tomorrow’s Harvest is a seventeen-track colossus starring the signature BoC vignettes that bridge the longer tracks into a markedly ominous, instrumental narrative. The album establishes itself as a bleak, sonic terrain where mechanical sounds revel rather than reject ruination, appearing to celebrate the idea of society’s destruction. Take for example Palace Posy. Heavy footed and marching, the slow trudge of the track confronts a listener with inevitable doom as the score slowly edges closer to its eradication. The idea that the city will outlast the man is omnipresent throughout Tomorrow’s Harvest, removing the hope of a hero: Mad Max without the Max if you will.

Use of analogue sounds and the cool metallic clacks typical of BoC, create a sense of nostalgia for sounds gone by: it’s their soundtrack to the end of the world, if the end of the world occurred in the 70s. It leaves you wondering whether BoC are slightly out of touch with the present, intentional or not. That being said Tomorrow’s Harvest is the distinctive legacy of members Michael Sandison and Marcus Eoin. It’s the result of eight years in the studio, not for want of money but for love of the art and should therefore be considered without the constraints of time.


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