Country-folk artist Spencer Burton has officially released a new single titled “Hard Times” following the announcement of fifth studio album Coyote, and first via Still Records, out on February 19, 2021. Premiered by Glide Magazine, “Burton offers an achingly tender wail that features Gram Parsons’ desert harmonies mixed with the contemplative twang of Jason Molina. From the crackling onset, there is a lonesome prairie sound that rises, making Burton a foremost story-teller.”
“It’s a song about how we can get through the hard times,” conveys Burton. “For me, that ‘how’ is love. It always has been. Love is a strong feeling and its ability to heal can help all of us get through the difficulties that life presents.”
Coyote represents both the excitement and fear surrounding solitude and creating art. Recorded with Andrija Tokic and in the comfort of friends on true analog equipment down in Nashville, the album is full of dualities, necessary stops, and questions on the long journey of self-discovery that is life. “Every song I’ve ever written is a place to keep a memory,” says Burton.
Burton has always been strongly connected to the natural world, carrying with him an insatiable wanderlust and deep respect for nature. Fittingly, he has partnered with Ontario Nature. $10 from the sale of every eco-friendly, Canadian-made fleece crewneck sweater will be donated to the Ontario-based conservation organization. This item can be purchased on its own or as a bundle with the vinyl pre-order. Also available is an exclusive Dine Alone version of the LP, and an original artwork test press. Purchases can be made through the Dine Alone Store HERE.
Coyote is self-reflective, a journey of finding oneself again through a soul-healing connection to nature and within the confines of being a parent, with Burton continually challenging himself to put out the best record he’s ever made. “I've been sitting well with the name Coyote because they're something I love and hate. I am intrigued and I fear them. The epitome of survival, never settling. Moving its lonesome self through cities and fields alike. Sometimes finding comfort in a pack, until the pack changes. Something that is constantly a part of my life, especially here on the farm. They give and they take, bringing excitement and also destruction. They represent family, and protection, and creation, and on top of all that, they symbolize the jokester. Which I've been told I can be. More and more these days I've been seeing them. Whether it's because I'm out in the wild more often, or something more spiritual. People say that when a coyote makes itself known to you, it's because you've lost your way in some shape or form. I've changed so much from the last album to this one, it's tough to know who I am anymore, so the songs themselves are about all of these things, including growth.”
The official videos are out now for ode to Alberta “Nothing’s Changed” with legendary Lloyd Green (Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Paul McCartney) playing lap steel; ballad-esque slow jam “Memories We Won’t Soon Forget” about loss, greed and change; and lead single “Further” which is “a composition steeped in feelings of hope and faith” (American Songwriter). From his punk rock roots as part of Attack in Black to the darker country-inspired sound of his two first solo albums under the name Grey Kingdom, Burton’s multifaceted musical trajectory has branched into indie and rock aesthetics while maintaining his folky sound. In 2012, Spencer dropped Grey Kingdom in favour of his own name, moving towards a more natural country folk sensibility.
Hailing from Southern Ontario, Burton has toured nationally, and in the United States, with City and Colour, Daniel Romano, Jenn Grant, and more. After years of living mostly in the city between long touring stints, Burton was feeling drained and uninspired. The constant hum of the city promoted a lifestyle that was entwined with work and networking, an energy that could easily push oneself into the ground. Coupled with the transient existence of a touring musician, he felt the need to plant roots. That pull led him to ‘flee the city’ for a quieter existence in the country. This simpler reality led him even closer to the earth and to the powerful freedom solitude brings. His move to Niagara coincided with his becoming a father, a shift that has permanently shaped his life and his music. 2019’s The Mountain Man is a children’s album created with his family in mind. “Making art feels pretty selfish, in a way. Having kids makes you forget about yourself, makes you care about them above anything else. It’s this insane sense of perspective—these little sources of the most intense love and happiness, but also worry and fear.” With his hankering for hankering for travel, farm life and the great beyond, Burton’s upbringings are as sincere as his demeanor.