LooPS Remember The Mourning Girl

The B.C. acoustic-pop duo offer an ode to a love that has run its course.

LooPS bid farewell to the Mourning Girl in their heartfelt new single — showcasing today on Tinnitist.

One of the hardest things about a relationship is realizing when to let go. And when the relationship is with a song you’re writing, you can sometimes have just as much trouble knowing when it’s finished. Both scenarios are at play in Mourning Girl, the latest single from the B.C. acoustic-pop duo.

An ode to a love that’s run its course, the song has an arrow-through-the-heart immediacy that belies the long and involved path it took to reach its final form. In a full-on show of tearjerking balladry, lead singer Kevin Roy pours out a metaphorical 40 to a girl who isn’t coming back, while partner Jon Fennell chimes in with piano and backing vocals that provide a poignant echo:

“Mourning girl, filled with dreams left incomplete
A shattered soul left on my own
Mourning girl, I wish I could have seen the sign
She’s left me now, she’s never coming home.”

The song was first written years ago, when Roy was finding the strength to move on from a long-distance situation that he knew couldn’t survive his stint in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. As a writing exercise, Mourning Girl served its purpose, and Roy quickly filed it away, part of a chapter in his life that was closing before his eyes.

Photo by Alex Beckett.

Flash-forward to years later, by which time the relationship was long defunct and Roy had retired from the RCMP to pursue music. His partner Fennell came upon Roy’s old demo of the tune and suggested they dust it off and make some tweaks — like replacing Roy’s acoustic guitar with his own keys. A full-fledged LooPS song was born.

It was typical, they say, of the way they work. Hence the name of the band, which signifies the unbreakable interdependence of equal parts — and also their use of loop pedals, like the ones that insinuate themselves into Mourning Girl as its melancholic tensions mount. Not for nothing, the name is also an homage to Kamloops, the town where the two men met and formed a full-time musical partnership in 2019.

Mourning Girl made it to the group’s self-titled first album, which was produced by Juno nominee and BC Music Hall of Famer Doug Cox in spring 2022. But Roy and Fennell had always considered the 11-track LooPS to be basically a demo, and when it came time to step up their game by working at EchoPlant studios with producer/engineer David Ziehr, revisiting the song was one of their first priorities.

The newly re-redone and polished version of the number is actually the second recording to emerge from those sessions. The first was Last Goodbye, a 2023 single that was slightly sprightlier from a musical standpoint but explored similarly forlorn thematic terrain. That track has generated over 35,000 streams. While Mourning Girl is more obviously and uniformly doleful, both numbers live up to the thumbnail Roy and Fennell commonly use to describe their music: What it would sound like if Ed Sheeran and Lewis Capaldi were to have a musical baby.

Photo by Gary Winslow.

Their live shows, though, are anything but somber. In addition to their world-class originals, LooPS maintain a repertoire of literally hundreds of covers, from hits of the 1960s to today’s top 40. It’s why they always go down a treat, whether they’re playing intimate gigs in small venues or high-energy, large-scale shows. And with Mourning Girl now out, they’re back on the concert trail to prove it. Current dates are as follows:

June 27 – Deadfall Brewing, Prince George
June 30 – Valhalla Music Fest, Terrace
July 5 – Summerland Waterfront Resort, Summerland
July 12 – Scotch Creek Hub, Scotch Creek
July 19 – Portside Pub in Gastown, Vancouver
July 21 – Overlander Day, Kamloops
July 27 – Stoneboat Vineyards, Oliver
August 2 – Summerland Waterfront Resort, Summerland

These summer shows find Roy and Fennell cruising on the momentum they began to build up on their first B.C. tour in 2021-22, which saw them playing 12 shows over three weeks in 10 different cities. But that’s nothing compared to the feat they pulled off on July 8, 2023, when they broke a Guinness World Record by performing nine concerts in as many cities — starting in Squamish and finishing in Langley — within the space of 12 hours. The effort raised $18,402 for the BC Children’s Hospital Foundation.

Check out Mourning Girl above, hear more from LooPS below and circle back to their website and Instagram.