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First Play: Alvvays, Antisocialites

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Holly Gordon

Press play on this Antisocialites stream, then head over here to read a full interview with frontwoman Molly Rankin.

“When we put out the first single, I didn't think anyone was really craving another 35 minutes of my voice,” says Molly Rankin over the phone from Toronto.

The Alvvays frontwoman is in the midst of a day full of interviews, one month before her band’s heavily anticipated second album, Antisocialites, drops on Sept. 8. The band had been quiet on its social media channels for months earlier this year, dropping a hint of the upcoming album online with a cryptic animation — complete with the Hermit tarot card and what would be the new album cover — on June 2.

The first single, “In Undertow,” came out less than a week later — and it turns out, people really were craving Rankin’s voice and a mid-summer burst of Alvvays’ surf-pop melancholy.

“I guess I just didn’t expect people to be watching,” she says, laughing a little.

But after its explosive 2014 self-titled debut, it’s hard not to watch the Toronto-based band with a Rankin Family protegé at the helm. Alvvays landed on plenty of best-of lists at the end of that debut year — including Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, Exclaim! and CBC Music — and peaked at No. 1 on the U.S. college charts. The band toured heavily in 2015, to a point where Rankin says that “I knew, as we were touring, that we would have to stop [laughs], so there was a little bit of pressure to slow down the train.”

Now — three years after that acclaimed debut album and a lot of time spent ignoring outside pressures — Antisocialites is ready, and a sophomore slump is nowhere in sight.

Listen to the new album’s 10 tracks in the player to the left one week ahead of Antisocialites’ release, and click here for a full interview with Rankin on the new album.

More to explore:

Molly Rankin on becoming 'a hermit' to write Alvvays' new album

Watch Alvvays perform live at the 2016 CBC Music Festival

Guided Tour: Alvvays takes us track-by-track through their breakthrough debut