While Limblifter came of during the age of Canadian first-wave alt-rock—along with Matthew Good Band, Pluto, and Ryan Dahle’s pre-Limblifter project, Age of Electric—Dahle’s project has managed to outlast its contemporaries. And that’s because, across three albums, Dahle displayed his penchant for writing pure, timeless power pop: Yes, Dahle played with power-pop tropes from the ’60s and ’90s, but it was all filtered through his own idiosyncrasies. Either way, despite a decade-long hiatus, we never wavered in our obsession with Limblifter, a fact cemented by the fact their eponymous debut was reissued in 2012 by We Are Busy Bodies (whose founder, Eric Warner, once covered “Tinfoil” with Neon Windbreaker, his post-hardcore band).
Accordingly, we were delighted to hear that Dahle was penning a new Limblifter album, and we’re even more excited to debut Pacific Milk today. Backed by a whole new band—featuring Gregory Macdonald, and drummer Eric Breitenbach—the album is Limblifter at the peak of their powers: Tracks like “Been There Done That” and “Dopamine” show Dahle’s penchant for sugary, off-kilter melodies; the sing-songy “The Fauves” and “Key of Karavana” are laid-back charmers, with the latter built around a delightful open-chord slacker riffs; keyboards freakouts, as in “Under the Riot,” bring Limblifter into uncharted territories. It’s clear that Dahle and co. aren’t content at power pop by the numbers.
So, what took him so long between albums? “I didn’t want to play shitty shows, so I just didn’t play shows for years,” Dahle told AUX. “I didn’t want to make shitty records, so I just didn’t make records for years.” Listen to Pacific Milk below.