Reassuringly familiar, if a little bit flashier, the longsuffering but thankful NQ Arbuckle wins another battle against the urge to cut and run with “Love Songs For The Long Game,” his first new music in six years. For an artist whose songs have always grappled, at least in part, with the panic that comes with both asking and answering the question “Why am I doing this?” NQ Arbuckle has found his place writing sea shanties songs for drinking on dry land, for our labours of love large and small. These are songs to magic our straw into gold, songs to keep the dread at bay. Songs that keep promises, long after those ships have sailed.

Not fully nostalgic, not simply regretful, “Love Songs For The Long Game” is for those who seek balance between constancy and recklessness, between last call and first light. The song, like the rest of NQ Arbuckle’s catalogue, is both a grand gesture and a humble offering, honouring our commitments to family, to love and to keeping that creative spark flickering. This is no bird’s eye view, but a view from the ground, in all its messy wonder.

NQ Arbuckle is a Toronto songwriter and namesake of a twice JUNO Award nominated Toronto band. His 2002 Six Shooter cult classic debut Hanging The Battle-Scarred Pinata, produced by Luke Doucet, launched a fervent fanbase devoted to shouting his lyrics back at him, an impressive collection of print clippings, and a sporadic touring career in which NQ Arbuckle careened from Italy to Northern Alberta, Huntsville to Nashville. On “Love Songs For The Long Game,” NQ Arbuckle’s newest song, Doucet returns as producer. Recorded at The Bathouse in Kingston, ON and mixed by Howie Beck, new music also features playing by original members of NQ Arbuckle band Peter Kesper and Mark Kesper, and superlative keyboard player Robbie Grunwald.

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All Apologies
No Hands Bicycle
I Liked You Right From The Start
I Can See The Moon
Cheap Town

Love Songs For The Long Game
Officer Down (Dakota Sessions)
Sun’s Hanging Low


Shauna de Cartier

Helen Britton

Kim Temple kim[at]sixshooterrecords.com


Love Songs for the Long Game (2023)

The Future Happens Anyway (2014)

XOK (2008)

The Last Supper in a Cheap Town (2005)

Hanging The Battle-Scarred Pinata (2002)