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Sure Thing: The Divorcees CD launch show 

w/Laura Merriman and the Lonesome Travellers, Saturday, May 9 at The Seahorse Tavern, 1665 Argyle, 9:30pm, $10.

In music, there are two great teachers, according to singer-guitarist Alex Madsen of Moncton-based outlaw country outfit, The Divorcees. “Time and the road really matures,” he says.

The band just released its second album, Last of the Free Men, and, Madsen says, “You’re gonna hear mileage.” Most of the songs grew from a good year and a half of touring their first record, You Ain’t Gettin’ My Country.

During that time, founding member Jason Haywood left the group. Madsen took over lead vocals and to lead the way on songwriting. Though the writing load is not Madsen’s alone to carry. “Every song is a band effort. I bring them in and the band brings them to life.”

Producer Josh Finlayson also helped in the songs’ creation. The Skydiggers alumnus did so by mostly letting The Divorcees do what they do best: play live. As soon as he got the producing gig, Madsen recalls, “[Finlayson] picked up on the fact that we were road dogs.”

There were no “20th takes” with Finlayson. “He knew to step in only when necessary,” says Madsen. Last of the Free Men was recorded at The Tragically Hip’s Bathhouse Studios near Kingston, Ontario, over nine days. But, Madsen reiterates, “In reality, we spent a year and a half recording this album,” referring back to the time on the road.

Finlayson “coaxed” two songs out of the group in studio---“When I Say” and “After the Storm is Gone.” The latter features Angela Desveaux on guest vocals. There’s also a cover of AC/DC’s “Shoot to Thrill.” “Like any good ole boys, we like our AC/DC,” Madsen says.

Not surprisingly, The Divorcees will “tour this album to death,” hitting the road in July and not coming back until Christmas.

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