By Nicholas Jennings on Wednesday, 24 March 2010
Category: Reviews

Music Review: Barenaked Ladies - All in Good Time

Twenty years is a long time for any partnership—longer than many marriages. For two decades, Steven Page and Ed Robertson shared vocal and songwriting duties as co-founders of Barenaked Ladies, one of Canada’s most successful pop bands. In that time, the pair—who began writing together at summer music camps—was responsible for a string of hits that mixed humor and intelligence. But the partnership ended a year ago after Steven’s arrest for drug possession.

Now, with Steven pursuing a solo career, Ed and the remaining Ladies—drummer Tyler Stewart, bassist Jim Creeggan and keyboardist Kevin Hearn—have forged ahead and released the band’s 11th album, All in Good Time. Change has been good for the group, allowing greater room for Jim and Kevin to write and sing. Meanwhile, Ed’s own songwriting has flourished. Says Ed: “It had been a huge and often dark year: an arrest, a plane crash (his own) and the death of my mother. All of these things took a heavy toll on my psyche and spurred a lot of serious exploring.”

All in Good Time features two of the Ladies’ most beloved features: witty lyrics and mellifluous harmonies. Ed serves up the heartfelt ballad “You Run Away,” the upbeat rocker “Every Subway Car” and the wacky rap of “Four Seconds” (his best since “One Week”), while Jim contributes the moving “I Saw It” and Kevin offers such standouts as the cinematic “Jerome” and the dreamy “Watching the Northern Lights.” Happily, the Ladies live on.