The bustling Winnipeg underground scene is having an epic start to 2019. After a scintillating cut from hotly-tipped synth-pop band Warming last week, one of the other most cherished acts on the city's scene, solo artist Micah Erenberg, has unveiled a video for his song 'Somewhere Beyond The Ocean'. Watch it on Gigwise below.
Erenberg may only be known by a few people here in the UK, but the below streaming video is of hot interest over in Winnipeg, Manitoba: the Prairie city in the geographical centre of Canada. We've felt this momentum behind him because he's tipped to break by the Manitoba Music export organisation. He was selected by them as one of a handful of artists from the city to showcase at the prestigious Breakout West festival last year – the festival with a reputation for highlighting the best music from all the Western Canadian talent, and providing a launch pad to further artists’ careers.
At said festival, Gigwise was fortunate enough to witness an intimate record shop in-store appearance he did there with just an acoustic guitar – it was a night that inspired us and encouraged us to keep an eye out for his future releases.
Listening to this latest track - a sophisticated, neatly-crafted indie rock, folk-tinged gem - we’re bowled over. It's fantastic to hear a mix of the singer’s experimental guitar and roots/Americana influences come across. There’s shades of Kevin Morby and Sparklehorse, but this is a musician who comes across as a commanding solo artist in his own right, one of the best indie artist in Canada we’ve heard in recent times.
The sonics heard in the track go some way to inviting the listener into Erenberg's background as a key figure on the Winnipeg scene, where he is lending his deft hand on guitar and vocals to bands with a rootsy/Americana bent, and to those with a more cutting-edge experimental side.
Of the track streaming above, which has just been given more legs thanks to its accompanying video, Erenberg says:
“This is a song that I wrote almost ten years ago. I remember the house. I remember the party. I remember the reports of my friend getting knocked out after I left. I remember the face of the person who did it. Around that time, the opening lyrics described a lot of the people in my social circles, and probably myself more than I would like to admit. I wanted to write about the feeling you get when you step away from that lifestyle. Bad habits are still habits and it's harder to walk away from them than it seems.”
“I remember being asked the meaning of the closing lyric,” adds Erenberg. “I had initially imagined it in a conversation between lovers and had never quite understood its placement. After being asked to explain it, I realized that it was more accurately describing a common situation in modern Social Justice. It wasn’t until then that I may have truly understood what the song meant to me. More likely is that I still do not know.”
And for the video, which stars Erenberg as lead actor, Erenberg says: “Colin [Medley, the director] wanted a diner, an industrial park and a toboggan hill. The Oldie, Gimli Airport, and Pope’s Hill. We conjured up a group of lovely hooligans, embraced the cold and had a blast.”
Director Medley adds: "Sometimes it can feel like we're stuck in our lives, whether that's working a crummy job, or living in a country where it's cold most of the year. With this video I wanted to show that there's always an escape, whether it's escaping into your own imagination or ditching work to go tobogganing with all your closest buddies."
Discover more about Micah Erenberg