Friday, October 24, 2014

Recording: Margarita Night

Artist: Margarita Night

Song: Focus Group

Recorded at Array Space ("Somewhere There's Second Sunday Series"), September 14, 2014.

Margarita Night - Focus Group

Full review to follow. Margarita Night don't know any songs, but they do take requests. In fact, they insist on them. Cuddly noise explosions (noisy cuddle explosions?) courtesy of Thom Gill, Colin Fisher and Weaves' Spencer Cole. The songs tended to end when all three members surprised each other with a simultaneous sudden stop that would cause them to break out in laughter.

Recording: Ryan Brouwer's Improv Wind Ensemble

Artist: Ryan Brouwer's Improv Wind Ensemble

Song: [excerpt]

Recorded at Array Space ("Somewhere There's Second Sunday Series"), September 14, 2014.

Ryan Brouwer's Improv Wind Ensemble - [excerpt]

Full review to follow. Ten deep, this improvised big band was under the guidance of conductor Christine Duncan, who was using a stripped-down version of the hand signals she employs with Element Choir. Performance-wise, the frenetic parts were the most entertaining to watch in real-time, with Duncan weaving the players into several cacophonous crescendos. But listening back, it was the quieter parts that resonate most, with subtle textures playing off against each other.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Recording: Teenanger

Artist: Teenanger

Songs: Fly On The Wall + Twisted

Recorded at The Garrison, September 12, 2014.

Teenanger - Fly On The Wall

Teenanger - Twisted

Full review to follow. Never resting on their laurels for too long, Teenanger have returned with twenty-four minutes of new music (a length that probably explains that inbetweeny title) building on some of the elaborations that emerged on Singles Don't $ell without abandoning the energy of their core sound. Bassist Melissa Ball gets a lead vocal on "Mild Survivor", and, as heard here the band juts into new wave/no wave territory with a guest saxophone turn from Nancy Bocock in "Twisted". [Teenanger will be opening for Texans The Marked Men at Sneaky Dee's on November 23, 2014.]

Recording: Crosss

Artist: Crosss

Song: unknown*

Recorded at The Garrison, September 12, 2014.

Crosss - unknown

Full review to follow. The lineup has shifted since I last saw 'em (with The Soupcans' bassist Nick now holding down the bottom end) but the core sound — call it Syd Barrett's Black Sabbath — remains in place. As vocalist/guitarist Andy March howls "recalculate my destiny", one can verily imagine a crew of teenaged AD&D players rolling the d20 to see who takes the next hit off the bong.

* Does anyone know the title to this one? Please leave a comment!

Recording: The Beverleys

Artist: The Beverleys

Song: unknown*

Recorded at The Garrison, September 12, 2014.

The Beverleys - unknown

Full review to follow. The Beverleys have just added a new single to their official discography, but they have a whole buncha others as yet untapped in their setlist. This one leans on a familiar little guitar change, and as with the last time I saw the band at The Garrison, Steph's drums were especially thunderous.

* Does anyone know the title to this one? Please leave a comment!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Concert Listings Roundup #67

You can read more about why I'm doing listings here. Long story short: This curated and decidedly non-comprehensive list contains nothin' but shows that I am going to/would go to if I had more time.


Gig of the week:

Wavelength 623 (feat. Ben Frost / Nick Storring) / The Garrison 2014-10-24 (Friday) [FB event]

Some Wavelength shows are raucous parties and some are island reveries, but this one is a more composerly affair, highlighting the cutting edge of the intersection between the "indie" and "new music" worlds. Australia-via-Iceland composer Ben Frost's music has minimalist/experimental cred, but isn't far removed from some of the icier, austere corners of the rock/electronics realms — plus I'm told it's gonna be loud. Meanwhile, in a fine pairing, Nick Storring (also well known for his work in the improvised and pop realms) is releasing his long-gestating (and very tasty) Gardens album as well.


This week's noteworthy shows:

AIM Toronto Presents (feat. Andy Yue / Mark Zurawinski / Raphael Weinroth-Browne) / Musideum 2014-10-21 (Tuesday)

Beams (Pistol George Warren / Patrick Grant & The Flesh Vignettes) / The Silver Dollar Room 2014-10-23 (Thursday) [FB event]

(weewerk)'s 13th Anniversary Party (feat. Art Bergmann [Songs For The Underclass EP release] / Tony Dekker / Two-Minute Miracles) / The Great Hall 2014-10-24 (Friday) [FB event]

Antoine93 (Mathematique / Ken Park) / Double Double Land 2014-10-24 (Friday) [FB event]

See Through Trio [Parallel Lights CD Release Party] (Paul Newman / See Through 5) / Array Space 2014-10-25 (Saturday) [FB event]

The Reigning Sound (catl. / Pow Wows) / The Horseshoe Tavern 2014-10-25 (Saturday) [more info]

Stüka (New Zebra Kid / Bile Sister) / Milk Glass Co. 2014-10-25 (Saturday) [FB event]

Poppy Seed & the Love Explosion (The Disraelis / Blue Cougars) / Bovine Sex Club 2014-10-25 (Saturday)

Parker Abbott Trio [Simeon Abbott/Teri Parker/Mark Segger – The Wayfinders CD release] / The Rex 2014-10-26 (Sunday) [FB event]

Work/Death (Gordon Ashworth / Manticore / Beard Closet) / Ratio 2014-10-26 (Sunday) [FB event]

The Birth of Troubling Forms [performing a live, improvised soundtrack to Nosferatu] / CineCycle 2014-10-26 (Sunday) [FB event]

King Weather / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2014-10-26 (Sunday)


Add these to your calendar:

TPC Impulse: the 2014 FUN-raiser for the Toy Piano Composers (feat. CelloPhone duo / members of TorQ Percussion Quartet) / Dave's 2014-10-28 (Tuesday) [FB event]

Lina Allemano Four / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2014-10-28 (Tuesday)

Titanium Riot (Lina Allemano New York Trio) / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2014-10-29 (Wednesday – early!)

Os Tropies [CreEPy Release and Halloween Party!] (Petra Glynt / Dead Burlesque by Sly Maria / Spoken word poetry by Angelica Né) / The Gladstone Hotel 2014-10-29 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Wavelength 626 (feat. Kurt Marble [first show!] / Suno Deko / Julie Byrne) / Milk Glass 2014-11-02 (Sunday) [FB event]

Feast In The East 42 (feat. Teenanger / The Soupcans / Hooded Fang / Rotzig) / Jam Factory 2014-11-07 (Friday) [FB event]

Building Home, Building Safety, Building Sovereignty – Legal Defense Fundraiser for Darlene Necan ("an evening of speakers, dinner and music with Amai Kuda and Simone Schmidt and MC Rebeka Tabobondung") / Native Canadian Centre of Toronto 2014-11-08 (Saturday) [FB event]

4th Annual Big Smoke Fest (feat. Dilly Dally / Blonde Elvis / Dirty Church / New Hands) / The Garrison 2014-11-08 (Saturday) [FB event]

Khôra (GREX / Clara Engel) / Ratio 2014-11-08 (Saturday) [FB event]

KASHKA [Bound Anniversary Party with two full band sets – one acoustic, one electropop] / The Drake Underground 2014-11-09 (Sunday) [FB event]

Kevin Drumm & Jason Lescalleet (Knurl / Advice [Jonathan Adjemian with Colin Fisher/Karen Ng/Matt Smith/Chris Worden]) / Double Double Land 2014-11-09 (Sunday) [FB event]

Sarah Peebles [Delicate Paths CD release!] (feat. Sarah Peebles/Nilan Perera/Kyle Brenders / Christoper Willes/Anne Bourne/Germaine Liu) / Ratio 2014-11-11 (Tuesday) [FB event]

Elephant Stone (The Blind Shake / The Auras / B-17) / Smiling Buddha 2014-11-21 (Friday) [FB event]

Spencer Burton / Rivoli 2014-11-27 (Thursday) [more info]

Aidan Baker (The Visit / Moonwood) / Ratio 2014-12-11 (Thursday) [FB event]

Viet Cong / The Garrison 2015-01-31 (Saturday) [FB event]


Bandcamp corner:

Tania Gill (piano), Karen Ng (saxophone), and Pete Johnston (bass) combine for playful/thoughtful improvisations in See Through Trio. Playing without a drummer, they're not tied down by metronomical thinking but there's still enough of a rhythmical impulse to keep things from getting too abstract. They're celebrating their new album on Saturday at Array Space (see listing above) — but you can also check it out now online.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Recording: The October Trio

Artist: The October Trio

Song: [excerpt from first set]

Recorded at The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), September 10, 2014.

The October Trio - [excerpt from first set]

Full review to follow. Time pulls us along our various paths, which sometimes means being pulled away from old friends. The October Trio dates back to 2004 when Evan Arntzen (sax, clarinet), Josh Cole (bass) and Dan Gaucher (percussion) established themselves as regulars in Vancouver's jazz scene. Over time, various movings from/back to Vancouver kept the band from being a working unit, but they still renew their friendship and musical headspace when they find themselves in the same city. Billed as a tenth anniversary spectacular, the band played three nights in a row in Toronto in three different venues, wrapping things up at The Tranzac. There was an easy interplay here that kept things moving nicely across two sets, a testament to the enduring power of old friendships.

[Bonus! I passed my recording along to the band, and they have posted their entire second set up on their Soundcloud for you to enjoy.]

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Contest: X Avant

X Avant IX: Transculturalism

October 16-19, 2014

Kicking their season into full gear, the Music Gallery's X Avant festival is always a special occasion. This year sees it a little more compressed into one weekend, which makes for an action-packed few days. This year's theme is "Transculturalism", putting into play Artistic Director David Dacks' masterplan to explode the narrow confines of genre, of ethno-cultural barriers and more. That's explored in a musical sweep which mixes Laraaji's New Age electric zither, Ed Hanley's tabla grooves, The Julius Eastman Memorial Dinner's tribute to an under-heralded contemporary composer, DJ Ushka's global bass music and Lido Pimienta's anticolonial celebrations.

All the concerts and side events are worth seeing — especially with a $40 festival pass on offer. And do note that the afternoons see a couple intriguing panel discussions that you can check out for gratis.

TICKETS + MORE INFO

You can check out the details of all the festival's events here, and if you hadn't noticed, the MG has a user-friendly/wallet-freindly online ticketing system that makes it easy to book shows in advance. Advance tickets are also available at Soundscapes, and as always, Music Gallery members get a sweet discount.

CONTEST

But if that weren't enough, complements of the Music Gallery, I have a festival pass to give away so you can overload on the festival.

To enter, shoot me an email to mechanicalforestsound@gmail.com, with "contest" in the title and your name in the body — or if it's easier, you can enter with a retweet on twitter or a "like" on facebook. I'll randomly draw a winner on Thursday, October 16th at noon.

N.B.: Hitting the "Like" button below is appreciated — and encouraged! — but does not constitute contest entry, given that I have no way of knowing who pressed it.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Concert Listings Roundup #66

You can read more about why I'm doing listings here. Long story short: This curated and decidedly non-comprehensive list contains nothin' but shows that I am going to/would go to if I had more time.


Gigs of the week:

X Avant IX (feat. Laraaji with Scott Peterson, Colin Fisher and Brandon Valdivia / Diely Mori Tounkara) / The Music Gallery 2014-10-16 (Thursday) [FB event]

X Avant IX (feat. Drums and Drones / Phrase Velocity) / The Music Gallery 2014-10-17 (Friday) [FB event]

X Avant IX (feat. Lido Pimienta / Ramzi) / The Music Gallery 2014-10-19 (Sunday) [FB event]

Kicking their season into full gear, the Music Gallery's X Avant festival is always a special occasion. This year sees it a little more compressed into one weekend, which makes for an action-packed few days. All the concerts and side events are worth seeing (especially with the $40 festival pass on offer), but if you have to narrow it down, these three are the ones I'm looking forward to the most. (P.S. enter to win an X Avant festival pass here!)


This week's noteworthy shows:

Aurochs / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2014-10-14 (Tuesday – early!)

The Warbler, Catie Staples & L-CON / Holy Oak Café 2014-10-14 (Tuesday) [more info]

Audiopollination #23 (feat. Diane Roblin/Jonathan Culp/Raphael Weinroth-Browne / cheryl o/Barry Prophet/Arnd Jurgensen / Adriana Monti/{AN} EeL / Kayla Milmine/bora x bora ) / Array Space 2014-10-14 (Tuesday) [FB event]

OJ Pimpson (Tonkapuma) / Fountain 2014-10-14 (Tuesday) [FB event]

Aldcroft/Ng/Gennaro (Rob's Collision) / The Imperial Pub 2014-10-15 (Wednesday)

Gianna Lauren (EON [Matt Cully solo]) / Holy Oak Café 2014-10-15 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Bizzarh (Beach Season / DCF / Niko Chan) / Smiling Buddha 2014-10-15 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Arnd Jurgensen with special guests / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2014-10-15 (Wednesday)

Esprit Orchestra: Polaris / Koerner Hall 2014-10-16 (Thursday) [more info]

White Fence (Buzzard King / MIMICO) / The Garrison 2014-10-16 (Thursday) [FB event]

Dust: The Quietest Big Band in the Known World / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2014-10-17 (Friday – early!)

Ronley Teper / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2014-10-17 (Friday)

Chandra with Bile Sister (Sexy Merlin / New Chance) / Double Double Land 2014-10-17 (Friday) [FB event]

Dilly Dally [7" Release Show!] (Army Girls / Wish / Bad Channels) / S.H.I.B.G.B.'s 2014-10-17 (Friday) [FB event]

Heavy Trash (Bloodshot Bill) / The Horseshoe Tavern 2014-10-17 (Friday) [more info]

The Big Sound / The Mod Club 2014-10-17 (Friday) [FB event]

X Avant IX: Jace Clayton's Julius Eastman Memorial Dinner / The Music Gallery 2014-10-18 (Saturday) [FB event]

X Avant IX (feat. DJ Ushka / Poirier) / Mojo Lounge 2014-10-18 (Saturday) [FB event]

Allison Cameron [lecture on the Arctic Circle, followed by performance with video] / Array Space 2014-10-18 (Saturday) [more info]

We Were Heads (Several Futures / Holzkopf / Arma Agharta / Alpha Strategy) / Handlebar 2014-10-18 (Saturday) [FB event]

The Shivas (Meanwood / B-17) / Smiling Buddha 2014-10-18 (Saturday) [FB event]

Lee Paradise (Marriage / Creep Highway) / The Silver Dollar Room 2014-10-18 (Saturday) [FB event]

Dog Gone Presents (feat. Secret Colors / The Auras / Sunshine & The Blue Moon) / Magpie Taproom 2014-10-18 (Saturday) [FB event]

Alaniaris / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2014-10-19 (Sunday – matinée! 3-5 p.m.)


Add these to your calendar:

See Through Trio [Parallel Lights CD Release Party] (Paul Newman / See Through 5) / Array Space 2014-10-25 (Saturday) [FB event]

Mystic Triangle [Tape Release!] (Blunt Chunks / Sean Paul [Sexy Merlin & Elrichman]) / Holy Oak Café 2014-10-28 (Tuesday) [FB event]

Blü Print: An Arachnidiscs Showcase (feat. Colin Fisher & Mike Gennaro / Holiday Rambler / Beard Closet / The Unquiet Grave) / Smiling Buddha 2014-11-04 (Tuesday) [FB event]

Ice Cream (Lee Paradise / Secret Sign) / Smiling Buddha 2014-11-05 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Wavelength 627 (feat. Petra Glynt / Jooj [Sook-Yin Lee & Adam Litovitz] / Maica Mia / Animalia) / Geary Lane 2014-11-08 (Saturday) [FB event]

Dirty Frigs [EP Release!] (Praises / Bile Sister / Sissy Boy) / S.H.I.B.G.B.'s 2014-11-14 (Friday) [FB event]

HSY (Crosss / New Fries / Boyhood) / Smiling Buddha 2014-11-28 (Friday) [FB event]

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Recording: Phookie Nijjit + Nodoubt Fersure

Artist: Phookie Nijjit + Nodoubt Fersure

Song: [excerpt from second piece]

Recorded at Array Space ("Audiopollination #22.1"), September 9, 2014.

Phookie Nijjit + Nodoubt Fersure - [excerpt from second piece]

Full review to follow. Local "improvised bonanza" Audiopollination likes to mix and match musicians who have never played together, an idea that might have found its apotheosis in its "self-curation" project, where musicians program themselves into new, recombinant performance units. These performers who closed out the night chose to present themselves pseudonymously. When pressed on the reasons why, one of them (who seemed to be making some sort of Electric Sense) held up a mangled trombone that looked like a train had run over it and said, "you'd have to be a phookie nijjit to play this thing." Backed by some spindly-skronk guitar, it sounded a bit like a junkyard In a Silent Way as performed by a moose call.

[As always, you can listen to the whole night over at Audiopollination's bandcamp. The next Audiopollination, another night of self-curation, takes place Tuesday (October 14th) at Array Space.]

Recording: Shahriyar Jamshidi + Raphael Weinroth-Browne

Artist: Shahriyar Jamshidi + Raphael Weinroth-Browne

Song: [excerpt from first piece]

Recorded at Array Space ("Audiopollination #22.1"), September 9, 2014.

Shahriyar Jamshidi + Raphael Weinroth-Browne - [excerpt from first piece]

Full review to follow. Local "improvised bonanza" Audiopollination likes to mix and match musicians who have never played together, an idea that might have found its apotheosis in its "self-curation" project, where musicians program themselves into new, recombinant performance units. Joining together on cello and kamanche (an Iranian bowed spike fiddle), Jamshidi and Raphael Weinroth-Browne spun out a wonderful performance, negotiating the meshing of scales and timbres on the fly — all the more surprising on hearing them explain afterwards that they had only played together once before in a practice setting. Totally entrancing and a wonderfully unexpected delight.

[As always, you can listen to the whole night over at Audiopollination's bandcamp. The next Audiopollination, another night of self-curation, takes place Tuesday (October 14th) at Array Space.]

Recording: Paul Newman, Aldwyn Hogg Jr., Peter Lutek

Artist: Paul Newman / Aldwyn Hogg Jr. / Peter Lutek

Song: [end of second piece]

Recorded at Array Space ("Audiopollination #22.1"), September 9, 2014.

Paul Newman, Aldwyn Hogg Jr., Peter Lutek - [end of second piece]

Full review to follow. Local "improvised bonanza" Audiopollination likes to mix and match musicians who have never played together, an idea that might have found its apotheosis in its "self-curation" project, where musicians program themselves into new, recombinant performance units. The night opened with veteran reedsman Newman and Lutek matched with pianist Aldwyn Hogg Jr., who began the set a bit tentatively but was soon generating some back-and-forth that sounded as informed by contemporary classical music as any school of improvisation you'd think of.

[As always, you can listen to the whole night over at Audiopollination's bandcamp. The next Audiopollination, another night of self-curation, takes place Tuesday (October 14th) at Array Space.]

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Recording: catl

Artist: catl

Song: Resistance Place

Recorded at Artscape Gibraltar Point (WL 614: "Wavelength Island Show"), September 7, 2014.

catl - Resistance Place

Surprise guests catl closed out the night (returning to the lawn they had graced a few summers before) bringing Wavelength's Island party to a close. Before sending the crowd home with the lullaby "Awake All Night", there were some raucous bursts like this one in a joyful end-of-summer celebration.

Recording: Weaves

Artist: Weaves

Song: Birds and Bees

Recorded at Artscape Gibraltar Point (WL 614: "Wavelength Island Show"), September 7, 2014.

Weaves - Birds and Bees

A fine day out on the island brought one last burst of that summer feelin' — and a reminder of times gone by. There was the formal announcement that Wavelength would be returning to the island for a full-fledged festival next summer, but the here-and-now was well-served by the bands on hand. Weaves was a definite highlight of the day, clicking on all cylinders performance-wise and sounding particularly on their game — and the newer tunes like this one are really integrated into the set by now. (A special nod should also be given to sound tech Dwayne Slack, who made AGP's backyard sound better than most clubs.)

Friday, October 10, 2014

Recording: Contact with Evan Ziporyn

Artist: Contact with Evan Ziporyn

Song: Music in Similar Motion [excerpt] [composer: Philip Glass]

Recorded at Yonge-Dundas Square (INTERsection 2014), September 6, 2014.

Contact with Evan Ziporyn - Music in Similar Motion [excerpt]

Read a few thoughts about the day as a whole here. Bang on a Can All-stars founder Evan Ziporyn's headlining status at this daylong festival was somewhat undersold, but he's a natural fit with the minimalism-loving crew who helped put the day together. After a few solo pieces from Ziporyn, this open score (not written for any specific group of instruments) from 1969 was an apt way to close out the day with the Contact ensemble. Perhaps typical of this sort of music with its extended minimal variations, I went from intrigued to mildly bored before really hitting the zone where I was grokking the repetitions. Settle in and wait for it.