Canada-based Skatepunk band Handheld is back after a 14-year hiatus with a new LP titled A Canadian Tragedy, due out June 14th, 2022, via Digi/LP/CD on Canada’s Thousand Islands Records. Their first single “Bend The Iron” has been released with a music video dropping on March 31. The new track features Emilie Plamondon (Canadian radio/podcast host) and is about the Lac Megantic, QC rail tragedy of 2013.

Handheld released siz albums and EPs from 1998-2008 and then took a 10 year hiatus. A few members went on to form Curbside. Handheld reformed with the same line-up +1 in 2018 with the goal of playing a few reunion shows, but the pandemic led the band to write and record a new album.

Of the upcoming album, the band says:

Yes, Sorry we know we are friendly folk full of maple syrup and cheese curds. But Canada is not without its fair share of issues. A Canadian Tragedy is full of songs about love, irony, coverup, scandal, folklore and tradition all with a Canadian twist. 11 Fast melodic punk songs written with sing-along melodies and lyrics that make you go hmmm.

In regards to the first single “Bend The Iron,” the band explains:

You’ve heard the story, bare minimum safety protocols, inadequate staffing, and corporate oversight leads to tragedy. Bend the iron tells the true tale of how the lack of attention caused one of the worst rail disasters in Canadian history, claiming the lives of over 45 residents and destroying a picturesque lake-side town in Quebec.