In April, the Stills announced they were splitting up, after three albums that saw the Canadian rockers gradually move from post-punk revivalism to a looser, rootsier approach. In the wake of the breakup, former members Dave Hamelin and Liam O’Neil have teamed up with Broken Social Scene drummer Justin Peroff for a new band called Eight and a Half. Check out their first song here.
Hamelin sang, wrote songs, and played drums and guitars for the Stills, and O’Neil provided keyboard, percussion, and backing vocals, so a spin-off isn’t exactly a stretch for them. Still, new track “Scissors” does represent a bit of a change for the trio, who now share a name with the acclaimed 1963 film by director Federico Fellini. Lush and layered, the song is moody, synth-based pop, with a galloping drum beat beneath wounded vocals that plead for someone to “hold me, like an old friend … like an omen.”
As Canada’s Exclaim reports, Eight and a Half have an album on the way in 2012 via Arts & Crafts. The self-produced collection is reportedly being mixed by Metric producer John O’Mahony. “It’s very synth-driven, but not in a 2007 electro way,” Broken Social Scene’s Peroff told Exclaim. “It’s pretty heavy.”
Hear It: Eight and a Half, “Scissors”