Toronto’s Indie Rock band Fast Romantics have announced their fourth album, Happiness + Euphoria, for a September 27, 2023 release and have unveiled the second in a two-part single series, “Happiness”. Its counterpart “Euphoria” arrived last month. The new single is accompanied by a video. The idea behind the dual album title and singles is that happiness and euphoria are two quite different things that we pursue in different ways for different reasons, but the two songs also have stylistic differences and point to a duality in their forthcoming album, too.
Discussing “Happiness”, the group’s co-founder Matthew Angus states:
I’m not really sure where ‘Happiness’ came from. I must have been in some kind of trance. I wrote it a long time ago and it always traveled with us as we recorded other material, waiting for the right record to be on. We’d play it live sometimes. It would evolve and shift in meaning. But whatever the state I was in when I wrote it, I know it meant a lot to me.
It might sound like gibberish or like a paradox or something to everyone else. But to me it feels like an anthem for the first half of my life. An ode to the things I thought would make me happy when I was a kid, and at the same time, an oddly optimistic eulogy for how little those things actually turned out to matter, and what might really matter in its place. That’s really all I can say about it. The truth is it’s more of a bundle of feelings than a pile of thoughts.
The two singles introduce audiences to what is, in essence, a two-part album, divided into distinct side A’s and side B’s. “Side Euphoria,” was mixed by Los Angeles-based producer Dave Schiffman (The Killers, Haim) and is characterized by jubilant Pop anthems, delivering “a renewed sense of self and purpose.” “Side Happiness” was mixed by Marcus Paquin (The National, Arcade Fire) and is a lyrical collection of songs reflecting very “personal explorations”.
The two overlapping but distinctly different concepts also capture the relationship between Angus and long-time musical and personal partner Kirty.
Matt is a man of many extremes. When it comes to music he gushes for big sounds and ambitious production and arrangements. I, on the other hand, like to keep things preserved, stripped down, and as close to the original idea as possible, for better or worse. In a lot of ways, Matt and I are two sides of a coin in the way we think about music. Now, after almost ten years of influencing each other, we’ve ended up with a record that celebrates the contrasts between us.