Canadian electronic producer Dan Snaith began releasing his colorful, sample-heavy tracks under the moniker Manitoba in the early 2000s, but a lawsuit led him to change the project's name to Caribou in 2004. Snaith re-released much of his Manitoba material with the new name, and continued developing his distinctive sound of warm, playful electronics and blurry samples of live instruments. As time went on, Caribou evolved both on studio creations (like 2007's pastoral Andorra, 2010's beats-forward house record Swim, and 2020's sweet, wistful Suddenly) as well as in expanded live configurations.
Manitoba first surfaced with a handful of EPs in the early 2000s, eventually releasing two full-lengths, 2001's Start Breaking My Heart and 2003's critically acclaimed Up in Flames. In 2004, however, Snaith was forced to give up the name Manitoba after Dictators frontman Handsome Dick Manitoba sued for trademark infringement, despite the passing of 15 years since the release of the only material under his name. Snaith renamed his project Caribou, his two previous full-lengths were reissued under the new moniker, and he released his first new Caribou album, The Milk of Human Kindness, in 2005 for Domino. Snaith moved to Merge for 2007's gorgeous Brit psych-influenced Andorra — which won Canada's 2008 Polaris Music Prize — and 2010's more dancefloor-oriented Swim. Shortly after the release of Swim came two lesser entries in the Caribou discography, the self-explanatory Swim Remixes and a live album entitled Caribou Vibration Ensemble, both released in 2010. The latter found Snaith conducting a 15-piece ensemble that included four drummers over the course of several live dates in 2009. The live album illuminated the stark contrast between the two sides of Caribou: Snaith's streamlined textural studio creations and the busy, sometimes unhinged reading of the material the live band took to the stage. While Caribou Vibration Ensemble documented a rare, wildly expanded version of the band, contributors John Schmersal, Ryan Smith, and Brad Weber became consistent members of Caribou's regular live iteration. Sixth studio album Our Love arrived in 2014, approaching more straightforward electronic beats with an underwater production aesthetic. Over the next several years, Snaith was more active with his club-minded alias Daphni, but in 2019 he announced that the seventh studio album from Caribou would be arriving in February of 2020. Suddenly was preceded by three singles — "Home," "You and I," and "Never Come Back" — all of which twisted through multiple genres and unexpected stylistic shifts. ~ Kingsley Marshall