Orchid Tapes label head Warren Hildebrand, who records as Foxes In Fiction, is getting set to release a death-haunted new album called Ontario Gothic, and we’ve already posted the early track “Shadow’s Song.” Like that song, the album’s title track features string arrangements from Owen Pallet. It’s a song about a friend of Hildebrand who died, and it’s gorgeously rendered dream-pop with waves upon waves of gossamer synth, with keyboards and strings and voices all blurring into each other, shoegaze-style. Below, listen to the song and read some words from Hildebrand about it.
Musicially, “Ontario Gothic” begins where the previous song on the album, “Shadow’s Song” lets off. The the same melody – made from cutting up & copying and pasting singular guitar notes forms the melodic basis for the majority former. The instrumental elements of the middle / transition section make up the Foxes in Fiction song “Breathing In” found on the first Angeltown compilation. And like “Shadow’s Song” it features violin arrangements by Owen Pallett.
Lyrically, “Ontario Gothic” is written about a close friend name Cait who died in 2010 and to whom the album is dedicated. Cait was one of the closest friends that I had for many years when I was a bit younger. She and I became really close after I had moved back to my hometown in the suburbs of Toronto, away from a farm in rural Ontario that my family lived on from 2001 until 2004. I was coming away from what was the worst and most emotionally tumultuous period of my life at that point and I carried a lot of fucked up anxiety and deep sadness about my life and myself as a person. But more than anything else, getting to know, open up to and spend time with Cait during those first years helped open me up to kinds of happiness and a love for life that I didn’t think was within the realm of possibility at that point in my life.
She was one of the most remarkable, open and truly good people I’ve ever known, really. The song “Flashing Lights Have Ended Now” was also written about her just a point where we’re drifting apart; a year later she was gone. I wrote this song to crystallize the better parts of our friendship and to remember the healing effect that she had on me as a person which without I would not be the same person or have the same acceptance for life that I do now. I miss her enormously and I feel her influence and presence constantly.
Ontario Gothic is out 9/23 on Orchid Tapes.