Anachronism Stew: The video for "The Darkest One" has Downie's character paying Don Cherry's deliveryman for an order of Kentucky Fried Chicken (which has packaging from The Eighties) with the "old-style" Canadian bills that were discontinued in the late 90's and early-00's.
Asshole Victim: "38 Years Old" is about a man imprisoned for murdering his sister's rapist.
Blatant Lies: During live shows, Downie has the tendency to insert long, rambling, and obviously untrue monologues over instrumental breaks, usually in "New Orleans Is Sinking". The most famous tells about how he used to work at Sea World but had to quit after a killer whale bit his arms off, and another tells about how he drowned while trying to pull a family from a car during Hurricane Katrina.
The Big Easy: "New Orleans is Sinking", "If New Orleans Falls", and the "Neworleansworld" segment of "The Depression Suite".
Canadian Music: One of the most famous examples. Their songs mention a lot of Canadian landmarks, people and places, to the point that it can be anathema for listeners who aren't familiar with the source material or their music videos:
"Bobcaygeon" is an actual town in Ontario, but Downie has admitted that he only picked the town name because it sort-of rhymed with 'constellations'.
"The Darkest One" has cameo appearances from the cast of Trailer Park Boys and Don Cherry.
"Fireworks", a song about not getting too hung up on nationalism, which is actually a very Canadian sentiment. It begins with a line only Canadians could understand:
Twenty years for nothing Well, that's nothing new Besides, no one's interested in Something you didn't do.
Early Installment Weirdness: Though "Small Town Bringdown" from their debut EP does somewhat foreshadow their style for the following 10 or so years, the rest of the album sounds absolutely nothing like anything else they've done.
That night in Toronto with its checkerboard floors Riding on horseback and keeping order restored 'Till the men they couldn't hang Stepped to the mike and sang And their voices rang with that Aryan twang
It may also be a reference to the band called The Men They Couldn't Hang.
"It's A Good Life If You Don't Weaken" plays with this concept. The video follows the band as they drive to a private residence, meet a family of wealthy snobs who give them lavish accommodations, dress in all-white suits and perform the final verse of the song for a group of socialites who look utterly bored with them.
"Silver Jet" has a teenager (played by Downie's own daughter) sneaking out of her family's house to see one of the band's performances.