Expertly navigating that rarefied space between elegiac folk and accessible pop, Toronto-based singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Ben Kunder has emerged as one of the most electrifying musicians on the indie scene and a sought-after live performer. Kunder’s dazzling sophomore album “Better Human”, released on Friday, June 29, is poised to dominate 2018.
Real life anchors most of “Better Human”, the record exploring compelling themes like the birth of a child, the struggle for life balance, the workday reality propping up our outward façade, largely illuminating the human struggle to navigate through the world while sharing darkness in order to see the light.
Produced alongside Aaron Goldstein at Baldwin Street Sound, guests include Oh Susanna, Jim Guthrie, Paper Bird/Bahamas singer Carleigh Aikins, Sarah McDougall, Ladies of the Canyon’s Maia Davies and Anna Ruddick, Arkells drummer Tim Oxford, keyboardist Anthony Carone, violinist Drew Jurecka, and Wintersleep drummer Loel Campbell, among others. Propelled variously by strings, pedal steel, keyboards, percussion, guitar, bass, and those spectacular before-mentioned voices renders small moments in precise detail, making his songs both accessible and, occasionally, downright palpable.
'BETTER HUMAN' ALBUM RELEASE TOUR
AUG 30 Montreal QC // Rocket Science Room
SEP 1 Fredericton NB // Grimross Brewing Co.
SEP 2 Moncton NB // Plan B
SEP 5 Halifax NS // Carleton
SEP 7 Iona Heights Cape Breton // Iona Heights Inn
SEP 8 Charlottetown PEI // Back Alley Music Record Shop
SEP 9 Mt. Stewart PEI // Trailside Inn & Cafe
SEP 11 Canning NS // Ross Creek Centre for the Arts
SEP 13 Kingston ON // Musiikki Cafe
SEP 15 Collingwood ON // Crow Bar
SEP 18 Barrie ON // The Songwriter Series
SEP 20 Toronto ON // 18 Waits
OCT 5 Red Deer AB // The Krossing
OCT 7 Sundre AB // Chez Petervine House Concerts
OCT 8 Edmonton AB // The Aviary
OCT 11 Kelowna BC // Snedden House Concert Series
OCT 12 Vancouver BC // The Heatley
OCT 13 Duncan BC // Providence Farm Chapel
OCT 14 Victoria BC // Copper Owl
OCT 15 Port Alberni BC // Char's Landing
OCT 21 Sheffield UK // Cafe #9
OCT 22 Birmingham UK // Kitchen Garden Cafe
OCT 23 Edinburgh UK // Scottish Arts Club OCT 24 Glasgow UK // Doublet Bar
OCT 25 London UK // Green Note
OCT 26 Norwich UK // Shoe Factory Social Club
OCT 28 Sligo IRL // Sligo Live Festival
NOV 1 Dublin IRL // The Sound House
NOV 2 Ballydehob IRL // Levis Corner House
NOV 3 Cork IRL // Crane Lane Theatre
NOV 4 Ballybofey IRL // Balor Arts Centre
NOV 6 Kiel DE // Prinz Willy
NOV 10 Berlin DE // Studio Gezett
Golden (2015, independent) co-produced by Kunder and John Dinsmore (NQ Arbuckle, Kathleen Edwards, Strumbellas) at the latter’s Lincoln County Social Club studio. Nine original songs with Kunder on vocals, guitar and piano alongside marquee guests Brian Murphy (Alvvays) on guitar/piano/Wurlitzer, Rich Knox (Dustin Bentall, Danko Jones) on drums/vocals, Anna Ruddick (Ladies of the Canyon, Randy Bachman) on bass/vocals and Aaron Goldstein (Cowboy Junkies, Daniel Romano) on pedal steel. John Connolly, Kirty and Ladies of the Canyon’s Maia Davies and Jasmine Bleile also contribute vocals.
Golden charted on college radio Canada-wide and received airplay from many respected international radio programs in Spain, the Netherlands, Germany and Italy, along with airplay and interviews at BBC1 and BBC2 in the UK and at RTE in Ireland. Single ‘Half Moon’ was the #2 song of CBC Music: Sonica’s Top 50 Songs of 2015.
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