Original Pairs Make A Romantic Return To Concord Avenue

The Toronto retro-rockers evoke a bygone era in their latest nostagic single & video.

Original Pairs stroll down memory lane in their new single and video Concord Avenue — showcasing today on Tinnitist.

There’s something of a bygone era about the Toronto band’s latest release — not just in its yearning for a better recent past, but in its sound. The song combines a ’50s Elvis croon with a mid-’60s rose-sunglasses filter to create a haunting and infectious ode to an apartment surrounded by intrigue.

Wandering the city at night, the narrator of Concord Avenue is plagued by the ghosts of a past romance. He recalls the warm, inviting beacon of a kitchen light, the ex-boyfriend who took his place, and the drunken writer who witnessed it all from the neighbouring porch. There’s a Byrds-era Los Angeles vibe to it all, aided by 12-string guitars, a bubbling bass line, and orchestral drum fills that put you right into the middle of this riveting, grainy-photograph romance. Producer John Dinsmore offered up a 1964 Rickenbacker 12-string that the band used to create a nostalgic atmosphere.

Photo by Rita Listner.

The song was inspired by an actual apartment on Concord Avenue in Toronto where Original Pairs’ founders Lisa Logan and Andrew Frontini first shared a secret and forbidden romance. The details of said romance may or may not actually reflect the events in the song, but that’s beside the point. The song steeps itself in the reverie of lost love, a melancholy almost anyone can relate to.

“Number 107 was where you lived back then
I used to see you tripping ’round the town
After you moved in with him
Later, when it all fell through
You got a flat just up the street…”

The video for the single, created by artists Jubal and Nathan Brown, collages live performance, grainy 16mm film footage that returns to the scene of the crime, and atmospheric found footage to create a suitable dreamscape for Concord Avenue’s nocturnal perambulations. Torontonians will recognize many West End landmarks.

The nucleus of Original Pairs is the longstanding romance between founding members Frontini and Logan. The duo shared a love of rock ’n’ roll and the Toronto indie scene, which they eventually channeled into their own music. After gigging for a year as a duo, the group evolved into a trio (with a revolving cast of bass players) before expanding and solidifying into their current quartet lineup. Bassist Lynda Krarr is an old family friend of Logan, and keyboardist Jon Loewen is Andrew’s partner in an architecture firm.

Their new album Long Play (nicknamed OPLP by the band) reflects Andrew’s experiences growing up in the burgeoning Kingston rock scene of the early ’80ss, a time when ’60s rock and rockabilly influences were reviving, and punk was morphing into New Wave and post-punk. OPLP was recorded live off the floor at Lincoln County Social Club in a period of four days, capturing the band’s onstage energy and the spirit of rock’s greatest years: 1965 and 1980.

Watch the video for Concord Avenue above, listen to OPLP below and follow Original Pairs on Instagram and Facebook.


Photo by Rita Listner.