Southeast Engine's folk-rock aesthetic emerged from the Ohio underground in 1999. The Wrens discovered SEE in 2006 and led Misra Records to the band later that year. The esteemed A Wheel Within a Wheel was released in 2007 and followed with 2009's From the Forest to the Sea. The latter received an 84 – Universal Acclaim – from rating aggregator Metacritic.

While preserving the signature sound that garnered Forest/Sea critical acclaim, Canary marks a dramatic step forward in regards to both songwriting and arrangement. In 2010 the band toured extensively with Deerhoof and is preparing an elaborate
2011 tour schedule as well.

Principal songwriter Adam Remnant, who's spent many years in the Appalachian town of Athens, Ohio puts the influences for the new record thusly: 'In the early part of the 20th century Southeast Ohio was full of little booming mine towns that revolved around the economy of the mines. In general, Appalachia was being exploited for its natural resources for quite a long time, and by the time of the Depression these systems were no longer sustainable.'

Canary marks the first release of the partnership between Misra Records and Bloodshot.