above: Image by Laura-Lynn Petrick.
Incorporating elements of jazz, R&B, and funk music into an eclectic, chilled-out indie sound, Peter Sagar’s HOMESHAKE project is an intelligent blend of pop songwriting and rolling rhythms. Originally hailing from Edmonton and now based in Montreal, Sagar has spent the last few years touring the world with Captured Tracks’ Mac DeMarco. Now, he’s buckling down with his solo project and pseudonym HOMESHAKE, banging out lo-fi indie pop packed with jazzy drums and addictive bass lines.
Previously releasing albums like the hazy, Dragonball Z-infused The Homeshake Tape via bandcamp, Sagar’s calm, often-quirky songs have earned him a signing with Captured Tracks sister label Sinderlyn Records. HOMESHAKE’s record label debut In The Shower, recorded this winter at Montreal’s Drones Club, is out today, October 7. In The Shower employs Sagar’s dreamy guitar quality and cloudy, warped samples in the same spirit as its predecessor within cohesive songwriting and a more hi-fi sound. While HOMESHAKE’s new album succeeds in its addicting instrumental mixture – funky bass, jazzy drums, and warbling guitar – it is often driven by its delicate, understated vocals and subtly-melancholic lyricism. Sagar has created a unique sonic landscape crafted with occassional amounts of melancholy, love, and apathy; still, it remains equally mellow and personal throughout. I had the pleasure of interviewing Peter before his album’s release, here’s what he had to say:
Alternative Nation: HOMESHAKE is usually labeled simply as ‘indie’ in the press, but there’s definitely undercurrents of other styles, like jazz and funk, in your music. What artists influence HOMESHAKE?
Peter Sagar: A few would be Ann Peebles, Roy Orbison, The Band, D’Angelo and Thelonious Monk.
For the past several years you’ve toured with Mac DeMarco. What’s it like touring with Pierce, Mac, and Joe?
It was amazing, those guys are the best. I would get pretty bummed out and homesick being away from home so long, but they kept me feeling good through the tough times.
I feel like you and friends like Alex Calder, Mac DeMarco, and Walter TV are channeling a similar sound and spirit. How do you describe your style of music?
I think we all share a sense of humor about our music and ourselves, nobody takes anything too seriously. I’m lucky to have such a talented circle of friends.
I really enjoyed The Homeshake Tape. What makes In the Shower different from other music you’ve made?
It’s much groovier than everything I’ve made previously, also a lot higher fidelity than I’ve ever recorded before, thanks to my guy Mike Wright. He’s a real whiz on the mix.
Is In The Shower a concept album?
It wasn’t supposed to be, but a friend of mine pointed out that the subject matter is basically a timeline of the last year I spent touring with Mac and recording it. I had no idea!
How have Canada and its local music scenes influenced you?
Immensely, this country is so huge but also so small, everyone knows each other but live so far apart. There’s a good community of people. Also it’s really fucking cold half the time, which is a great reason to stay inside and record.
Your debut album is out this week. What’s next for Peter Sagar and HOMESHAKE?
I’m going to start recording my next album really soon, I’ve finished all the demos I think, but for now I’m just hanging out at home watching a million movies eating the delicious meals my sweety cooks up.