Michael Rault left Edmonton for the bustling big city of Toronto in 2012, but his story is not one of small town boy meets big city success. Rault had already attracted a sizable following with releases on a smattering of Canadian indies. His manager had been bugging him to move to Toronto for a while when he finally caved.
Toronto was a by-product of buzz, not its original source, but that doesn’t mean themes of leaving home aren’t plentiful on Rault’s newest album, Living Daylight. The opening track, “All Alone (On My own)” has Rault singing “I’m so damn tired I don’t wanna go out, I don’t wanna stay in all alone,” and “I’m so tired of being on my own.” Even if he did make a lot of friends, and a good-sized splash, after landing in Toronto, the alienation of a new city still seems to haunt him.
The other thing that seems to haunt Rault is the first thing most young males consider when moving to a new town: a woman to keep him company. At least six of the ten tracks on the album are explicitly about searching for love, and it doesn’t take much reading between the lines to bump that number up to the full ten.
Although there is some fuzz, some reverb and a few inventive guitar solos on the album, it is a clear departure from the noisier garage rock of past records and of past record label mates. There’s a strangely psychedelic doo-wop in these songs, the Beatles if they had been raised on fuzzed-out jukebox hits.
Rault’s show in Portland this month is one of only five stops in the U.S. this tour (another is in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, because, of course) and his live show is rumored to be a helluva good time, so you’d be strongly advised to get there. »
– JP Kemmick
Michael Rault plays with Boone Howard at Bunk Bar 10/27.