John K. Samson posted two 13-year-old Weakerthans demos

Here's a little gem for you from 2001: a slow, solo piano 4-track recording of The Weakerthans singer/songwriter John K. Samson playing "Benediction." The song got country-rock treatment with backup vocals from Sarah Harmer on 2003's Reconstruction Site, their best record (after Left and Leaving of course). This version of "Benediction" showed up on John's site two days ago at the end of a post about a published collection of art from the Idle No More movement from ARP Books, the publishing house where he's the managing editor. This version ends with different lyrics: "Pick a point on this horizon / Go / Or if you want to stay / I'll be waiting where we lost our way."

Four months ago he posted another demo of a song that would eventually make it on Reconstruction Site. This take on "Our Retired Explorer" is from April 2001, a solo recording closer to its album version than the "Benediction" demo. John strums an electric guitar to what sounds like a drum machine. The singing is softer, too, like he was trying to record quietly.

Is this a sign of New Weakerthans material? Probably not. Outside of three shows last year, there hasn't been much activity to speak of. Talking with John K. Samson in 2012, he said it was just a matter of time before the follow-up to 2007's Reunion Tour. Hopefully it'll happen before they double the time between the release of Reunion Tour and Reconstruction Site.