Emerging singer-songwriter Victoria Houser, a talented, Toronto-based country/roots artist hailing from the tranquil coastal town of Hubbards, Nova Scotia, unveils her latest single, ‘When You’re Sober.’ This upbeat, unusually melancholic, and infectious track is the first single from her upcoming 4-song EP, titled ‘Somewhere Close to Home’, set to be released Tuesday, November 14th, 2023.
Accompanying the single launch is a music video, which was recorded with live audio from The Root Down in Toronto.
Victoria Houser’s musical journey began organically, influenced by her East Coast upbringing. She seamlessly combines country and folk elements with an East Coast flair, drawing inspiration from musical luminaries such as Gillian Welch, Neko Case, Lucinda Williams, and Anne Murray.
“Victoria Houser’s music is a rich blend of traditional country, modern folk, deep roots, and singer-songwriter influences, delivering authentic and heartfelt storytelling at its core.” ‘When You’re Sober’ perfectly reflects this blend, delivering a catchy country song everyone can relate to.
Victoria shares her inspiration behind ‘When You’re Sober’: ” I love to write songs that tell a story, and for ‘When You’re Sober, I aimed to tell a tale that would make listeners feel a little sad and a little amused, juxtaposed with a catchy melody, to showcase the complexities of relationships (and couples who drink) in a light-hearted way.”
This heartfelt single was born out of a challenging relationship. Still, it captures the resilience of the human spirit and the power of music to heal. ‘When You’re Sober’ is a testament to music’s magic in expressing those emotions and experiences that words alone cannot capture.
Victoria adds, “The song touches on something many of us can relate to–staying blind to problems in a relationship… at all costs.”
Victoria’s musical talent shines through in ‘When You’re Sober,’ with each instrument acting as a character in her story, including Victoria’s delicate, warm vocals. The single and soon-to-be-released EP features an entirely Canadian team, with key collaborators like Toronto-based musician Chris Staig who co-produced the EP. The song, a snapshot of a couple’s night out at the bar, is a candid exploration of the complexities of human emotions and relationships.
Musically, ‘When You’re Sober’ delivers a warm palette of sounds. Acoustic guitars are accompanied by walking bass, bell-like electrics, train track drums, Calexico-style trumpets, and dancing fiddles.
Layered at the top of the track are Victoria’s lyrics, which, in her own words, “explore the idea that a drink at the bar can feel like the comfort of old friends, and will leave you wondering if you should laugh or cry.”
Her songs offer a unique blend of storytelling and musical artistry. Victoria’s favourite lines of the track appear in verse two.
“The comfort of some old friends who’ve seen us through time and again.
I’ll take a Bulleit to the heart, Jack and Jamie do your part.
Don’t you leave us all alone,
’cause if we go home, it’ll all fall apart.”
‘When You’re Sober’ is set against an addictive melody that will stay with you long after the song ends. Its humour and honesty make it a captivating addition to Victoria Houser’s growing repertoire.
Key members and musicians on this sonic adventure include Victoria on lead/background vocals and acoustic guitar, Chris Staig on electric and acoustic guitars, Dennis Mohammed on bass, David MacDougall on drums, Shelley Coopersmith on fiddle, and Tim Hamel on trumpet. The recording took place at the Lincoln County Social Club in Toronto, Ontario, with sound engineering and mixing duties taken up by John Dinsmore with mastering expertise from Andrew Seok. The music video was shot and directed by Joy Webster and Nick Tiringer, with sound engineering by Michael Legere.
“Beneath the whiskey and wine-soaked facade of ‘When You’re Sober’ lies a poignant narrative of a relationship held together by a fun night out, even as it teeters on the brink of collapse,” says Victoria.
The song cleverly disguises a tale of love’s demise with the cheerful clinking of glasses and lively tunes, offering a humorous glimpse into the fragile veneer of a failing romance.
Victoria Houser’s ”When You’re Sober.’ is a refreshing and authentic take on the complexities of love and relationships, wrapped in an unforgettable americana melody. Be prepared to embark on a musical journey that will make you laugh and tug at your heartstrings This is an artist to watch in roots and country music.