Canadian indie-electronic musician Rich Aucoin is bringing his Death Tour to Winnipeg on Nov. 28, debuting the final instalment in his death album trilogy, Release. Though, the version of Release Aucoin will play is not what he had intended to show the world.
In early 2017 — after months of recording — his laptop was stolen, and with it the entirety of his then-forthcoming album.
“I thought I had it backed up,” Aucoin said.
“But I didn’t, and so then, I had to remake the record.”
Aucoin said he spent the next six months recreating what he could and making peace with what he couldn’t, whether it was an elusive keyboard figure or a particularly inspired bass rhythm.
“I had to let go of the idea of trying to remember,” he said.
“I would sit at the bass every day and try to let go but it just came back.”
After a half-year of recording and constructing his record all over again, Aucoin was finally done. However, Release wouldn’t see the light of day until May 2019.
With label woes delaying the process, Aucoin spent the two years following the re-recording biking across the U.S. and recording an entirely new, unrelated album.
“I’ve already written my next record, and recorded it, so I know where the next direction’s going,” he said.
Aucoin said he considers Release the closing of an artistic period — the end of an idea about life, death and existence that began with his 2011 debut We’re All Dying to Live.
“In addition to [Release] being a record about how we live and how we prepare for death and how we mourn the death of loved ones, it’s also kind of like an end and a new beginning, starting in 2020,” he said.
Aucoin said he feels relief in finally playing these songs live and having them breathe out in the open, allowing him to move forward into a new chapter.
“It’s a nice moment to be touring [Release], kind of like hanging out with an older friend and then knowing that they’ve got to go off and do their own thing after this,” he said.
Naturally, after such a long and convoluted gestation, Aucoin said Release has a distinctly different energy than his previous records, an energy that he’s enjoyed exploring on the Death Tour.
“Ephemeral was such a high energy record,” he said, “and the songs are all fast [beats], and that made the live show really high energy the whole time.”
Aucoin said he’s found it interesting to read the energy of the room when playing Release “and seeing it doesn’t always have to be high energy for the entire duration of the show.
“You can break it down and then build it back up.”
This newfound sense of energy will likely carry into Aucoin’s future endeavours.
He said he plans to release one record per year for the next five years, perhaps an antidote to the long journey that led to his latest.
For now, Aucoin is left to close this chapter of his musical life from the stage, bringing his death-conscious, human-made electro to the people, breaking it down and building it up — finally reaching release.
The Good Will Social Club will be hosting Aucoin’s Death Tour Nov. 28.