When the Our Lady Peace frontman released The Hunters Lullaby in 2007, he surprised rock fans with an album that relied heavily on spoken word, drawing inspiration from both the beat poets of the 1950s and the slam poets of the new millennium. “It was so raw back then,” Maida explained, “and these guys [from the new movement] are just as raw and relevant now. Politically, culturally, socially.”
While less reliant on spoken word, Maida’s sophomore solo album boasts much of the same urgency. Recorded with his wife, Chantal Kreviazuk, who provides piano accompaniment and backup vocals, songs like the driving “S.O.S.” promote social action while the Radiohead-like “This is Gonna Hurt” is a stirring cautionary tale. Best of all is the elegiac, horn-laden “Montreal,” about standing strong in the face of adversity. An outspoken supporter with Kreviazuk of the War Child charity, Maida is admirably putting his principled beliefs into song.