Canadian band The Backstays call for solidarity in their new single “No Hot Cargo.” Inspired by Canada’s arm trade, “No Hot Cargo” is a socially and politically charged anthem where the band infuses new wave elements into a psychedelic soundscape, yielding a mesmeric melodic statement. “The song was inspired by the small-but-mighty protests in Saint John, against Canada’s arms trade and the sale of Light Armoured Vehicles (LAVs) to Saudi Arabia while it inflicted war upon Yemen,” shared The Backstays’ Pete Johnston. “These combat vehicles are made in Ontario, and have been quietly shipped out of the Port of Saint John for the past few years.” Check it out:
Johnston further added, “The line ‘If we’re ever gonna wake the dead’ is a nod to activists everywhere trying to resurrect worker solidarity and organize broad worker coalitions. ‘No Hot Cargo’ mourns the decline of labour unions in recent decades; the roll-back of democratic bargaining rights and the rise of neoliberal capitalism in Canada. I think a lot more people are realizing we have some very serious fundamental problems, and one of the foremost is how do we take power away from these unaccountable billionaires?”
The Backstays formed in Saint John, New Brunswick back in 2018 and quickly garnered local buzz with their debut self-titled EP. Known for candid lyrics and boldness to address social topics, they draw their sound influences from new wave and post-punk. The track is from their upcoming album Tributaries, which will be released in mid-2021.