On Our Radar: Bob Sumner proves it's all a matter of perspective in the gorgeous "Didn't We Dream"

    1 of 2 2 of 2

      In the name of all that’s decent and holy, enough already. Because really, there’s only so much a person can take, even with the bottle there to dull the endless insanity.

      In case that’s too vague, let’s start with COVID-19, the gift that keeps on giving. Remember how, around six months ago, the pandemic seemed like the beginning of the end of days? Especially if you lived around Commercial Drive, where the only people roaming the largely deserted streets in March were those living on the fringes: Opera Man, Topless Woman, and Vito the Rug.

      For a while things almost returned to normal—hell, even restaurants were busy. (And no, we’re not just talking the Lunch Lady). But just when it seemed safe to go into the liquor store again all hell has broken loose again. COVID-19 is ripping across the province with a vengeance that’s somehow scarier than March.

      And impossibly the grimness doesn’t stop there.

      With wildfires raging hellishly out of control in Portland, Washington, and California, Vancouver’s air quality this September is making Kanpur, India look like the Rocky Mountains on a windswept clear winter's day.

      The second the sun goes down, the skies look like the final reel of Mothra. And if all that isn’t bad enough, Superflux is out of its Coconuts beer until sometime in October. If only there was some way to rewind the clock to a kinder, gentler, and less-frantic time.

      That’s unfortunately not going to happen until Al Gore invents a time machine to go along with that Internet thing he gave the world a few years back.

      So in the meantime, settle in with an Old Fashioned and get ready to be transported by Bob Sumner’s video for “Didn’t We Dream”.

      On the visual side of things, trainspotters and trivia experts will recognize the backdrop as a former East Van convenience store famous for a cameo in Juno.

      These days the spot is better known as the cozily atmospheric antique store The Found & The Freed. You want retro? Think everything from the vintage lights bulbs to the old-school lettering on the windowfront. And, of course, antiques.

      That makes a totally fitting setting for “Didn’t We Dream”. A sepia-toned exercise in classic Americana, the track walks a line between melancholy wistfulness and world-weary hopefulness.

      As for the video, it flips between two worlds: clearer than 4K colour and heavily distressed black and white.

      What’s more gorgeous? That’s all of matter of perspective. Much like what passes for life these days on the planet we all call home in these endlessly bizarre times.

      The good news is that no matter how bad a day you’re having at this particular point in your life, “Didn’t We Dream” will convince you that, maybe, something good and beautiful is around the corner. All you have to do is hold on.