Monday, September 30, 2013

Concert Listings Roundup #12

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:

The Saffron Sect (Biblical / Ostrich Tuning / Tess Parks / Elissa Mielke) / The Silver Dollar Room 2013-10-04 (Friday) [FB event]

Progressive Atavists/Psych cult legends The Saffron Sect return to headline this silver screen fundraiser ("All proceeds go to the production of MINOR, a rock n' roll road movie and a love letter to the teenage dream.")


This week's noteworthy shows:

Soundstreams with Tõnu Kaljuste + Choir 21: "The Music Of Arvo Pärt" / Koerner Hall 2013-10-01 (Tuesday) [FB event]

Ronley Teper's Lipliners / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2013-10-02 (Wednesday)

Dust Adam Dust (Moonwood / roboteyes) / Clinton's 2013-10-02 (Wednesday) [FB event]

MV+EE (Tess Parks & The Good People) / The Shop under Parts & Labour 2013-10-02 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Wavelength 576 (feat. Our Founders / Heartbeat Hotel / Bad Channels) / The Piston 2013-10-03 (Thursday) [FB event]

Drainolith (Tarpit / Father Dust) / Holy Oak Café 2013-10-03 (Thursday) [FB event]

P.Y.O.T.: Photographs by Colin Medley [not a gig! still very rock'n'roll!] / 2186 Dundas 2013-10-03–2013-10-16 [FB event]

Cellphone (Gay / Shark? / Alpha Strategy) / The Shop under Parts & Labour 2013-10-04 (Friday) [FB event]

Teen Tits Wild Wives (Elos Arma / Omhouse / Baku, Eater of Dreams) / 961A College 2013-10-04 (Friday) [FB event]

Nhapitapi / Waterfalls Indian Tapas and Bar 2013-10-04 (Friday) [more info]

Ghost Hole V Fundraiser (feat. Fresh Flesh / Dr. Ew / Wake Island / Crhymes / Rambunctious) / Double Double Land 2013-10-04 (Friday) [FB event]

Cluttertones (See Through Trio) / Array Space 2013-10-04 (Friday)

Kosher Dill Spears (Body Help) / Holy Oak Café 2013-10-05 (Saturday) [FB event]

Dany Laj and The Looks / The Sister 2013-10-05 (Saturday) [FB event]

Rock The Line (feat. Sarah Harmer / Hayden / Minotaurs / more TBA) / Mel Lastman Square 2013-10-06 (Sunday) [more info]

New Music Concerts: STEFAN meets ANTON and MORTY meets JOHN / Betty Oliphant Theatre 2013-10-06 (Sunday) [FB event]

Crosswires (feat. Moonwood / Pale Eyes / This Mess) / Handlebar 2013-10-06 (Sunday) [FB event]

Horse Lords (Sook-Yin Lee/Brandon Valdivia/Adam Litovitz / Clarinet Panic / New Fries) / The Boat 2013-10-06 (Sunday) [FB event]


Add these to your calendar:

Crystal Stilts (Zachary Cale / The Auras) / The Horseshoe Tavern 2013-10-08 (Tuesday) [more info]

Feast In The East 30 (feat. Picastro / Khôra / Loom / Jason Doell) / Gerrard Art Space 2013-10-10 (Thursday) [FB event]

Weaves (Bizzarh) / The White House 2013-10-12 (Saturday) [FB event]

Child Abuse (Thighs / Bbigpigg / Staer / Lea Bertucci & C. Lavender) / The Boat 2013-10-23 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Marine Dreams [Record Release Party!] (Alvvays) / Izakaya Sushi House 2013-10-24 (Thursday) [FB event]

Wavelength 579 (feat. Tails (from the Crypt) / Light Fires / Himalayan Bear / Adverteyes) / Monarch Tavern 2013-10-31 (Thursday) [FB event]


Consumer advice:

The New Music Passport is back! You pay $39 up front, and then you can see more than 10 concerts for $5 each at the door. (Plus! A free issue of Musicworks!) A very worthy investment for anyone that wants to get a little deeper into contemporary classical/new music. You can grab one for yourself or get more info here. This is really good value for the money, and last year, I got to see some pretty decent high-class shows on the cheap.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Recording: Interstellar Orchestra

Artist: Interstellar Orchestra

Song: Crackstarter

Recorded at the Imperial Pub's back room, September 27, 2013.

Interstellar Orchestra - Crackstarter

Full review to follow. Given that everyone here has a whole bunch of other stuff on the go, I can only imagine that it must take some organizational skills to convene this ensemble, even with its expanding and fluid lineup. And given that this band contains some of the city's finest players, every show they play should be an event. The Interstellar Orchestra got a smaller audience than they deserved this time out, but the avant big band still had a blast playing for each other. And although there's some controlled chaos on stage, with saxophonist Jay Hay calling out solos and sections like a traffic cop, the underlying melodic structures tend to keep the excursions grounded. When they get gathered together again, do make a point of coming out and digging this.

PS: Just for posterity's sake, I should note that the lineup at this show was:

  • Jay Hay - Tenor & Baritone Saxophones
  • Jeremy Strachan - Tenor Saxophone
  • Karen Ng - Alto Saxophone
  • Nick Buligan - Trumpet
  • Nicole Rampersaud - Trumpet
  • Tom Richards - Trombone
  • Scott Peterson - Bass
  • Mike Gennaro - Drums

PPS: More shows at the Imperial, please! I like that cozy little back room.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Recording: Dieter Moebius

Artist: Dieter Moebius

Song: unknown*

Recorded at Double Double Land, September 26, 2013.

Dieter Moebius - unknown

Full review to follow. Moebius, known for his solo work as well as his collaborations with Cluster, Roedelius, Harmonia and Brian Eno casts a long shadow over electronic music. Nearing seventy, he's not playing for nostalgia, touring with a minimalist setup (CD players, kaoss pad and sampler) similar to many young DIY artists. Some of the music he played here might serve to suggest how broad his influence is (one song sounded something like Flying Lotus, another could have easily passed for a track from, say, Dirty Beaches or US Girls) but though the crowd was demonstrably abuzz with his performance, there wasn't a lot here to suggest that he's transcending the work now being done by those descendants — or even stuff that you could see around the city on a weekly basis.

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

Recording: Brr

Artist: Brr

Song: unknown*

Recorded at Double Double Land, September 26, 2013.

Brr - unknown

Full review to follow. Moshe Rozenberg (also of Absolutely Free) might have been a little nervous on getting the nod to open for kosmische/electronic godhead Dieter Moebius. But in a successful case of Kill Yr Idols, this set contained the night's most interesting music, with Ryan Dodgson's hand-cranked fabric art speeding up and slowing in time to the waxing and waning synthesizer ripples.

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

Friday, September 27, 2013

Recording: Kyle Brenders Quartet

Artist: Kyle Brenders Quartet

Song: Sparrow

Recorded at Array Space, September 25, 2013.

Kyle Brenders Quartet - Sparrow

Full review to follow. Brenders' compositional style might be "quirky and mechanical" (as he jokingly referred to one of his pieces) but they're also bursting with ideas and vitality. This show saw the first performance of his "re-complied quartet", with Heather Segger (trombone) joining alongside Wes Neal (bass) and Mark Segger (drums).

Recording: Mike Gennaro + Nigel Taylor

Artist: Mike Gennaro + Nigel Taylor

Song: [Third Improvisation: "Ballad"]*

Recorded at Array Space, September 25, 2013.

Mike Gennaro + Nigel Taylor - [Third Improvisation: "Ballad"]

Full review to follow. Local percussionist Mike Gennaro might play with a stripped-down kit, but given how he uses every single surface (sides and cymbal stands and what have you) — as well as showing a propensity to get an elbow in on occasion — means that he's never lacking in expressive options. This set saw him in a duo with Montréaler Nigel Taylor on trumpet. After a particularly labour-intensive bit of music, Gennaro called for a ballad, and you can hear Taylor begin here playing with a mute. That doesn't last too long, though, as things escalate quickly after that.

Gennaro will be playing another duo set tonight (with the marvellous Jay Hay) to open things up at tonight's performance of the Interstellar Orchestra ("Toronto's own all-star free jazz orchestra") at the Imperial Pub.

* So far as I know, the material in this set was all spontaneous, untitled improvisations.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Recording: Omhouse

Artist: Omhouse

Songs: Long Live + Gutterbird

Recorded at Monarch Tavern (Wavelength 575), September 24, 2013.

Omhouse - Long Live

Omhouse - Gutterbird

Full review to follow. In between his other band and his side gigs, Steven Foster has been working on this project for more than a year now, and with an album due out next month, it's developed into something quite inneresting. More stripped-down and scrappy than D+M, the band's something of a hard folk/power pop hybrid that brings to mind the songcraft of his bandmate/peer Carmen Elle, or, say, hints at the vague Beatles-isms of Sam Phillips — all tossed in a blender and sent out to busk on the sidewalk.

Recording: Justin Walter

Artist: Justin Walter

Song: Lullabies & Nightmares

Recorded at Monarch Tavern (Wavelength 575), September 24, 2013.

Justin Walter - Lullabies & Nightmares

Full review to follow. The last-minute cancellation by headliner Nat Baldwin kept more than a few people away from this Wavelength show, but it turned out to be rather exciting regardless. His tourmate Justin Walter did make it up and impressed with the unusual sounds of his EVI. The electronic valve instrument (looking something like a cross between a bong and a Nintendo controller) is a breath-activated MIDI device that looks rather like what the OMNI-reading public of 1983 might have assumed would be ubiquitous by 2013. Probably most commonly found in the jazz/fusion scene today, Walter's application was closer to the New Age-y end of ambient — these tunes sound like they could soundtrack some particularly abstract NFB nature documentaries. His impressive new album just came out on the Kranky label, and hopefully we'll have a chance to hear him around these parts again soon.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Recording: Lemon Bucket Orchestra

Artist: Lemon Bucket Orchestra

Songs: Lemon Bucket Orchestra - Nese Halya Vodu / Calusari

Recorded at Christie Pits ("Bloor Ossington Folk Festival"), September 22, 2013.

Lemon Bucket Orchestra - Nese Halya Vodu / Calusari

Full review to follow. Starting out in living rooms and basements in its first year and piggybacking on the local street festival in its second, The Bloor Ossington Folk Festival took a big step up in size and complexity this year, all while holding fast to its mantra of "free music in shared community space". Settling into the topography of Christie Pits, this year's festival included two stages, a beer garden, food vendors and more. Sunday was chilly but dry, and the stages were busy all day, squeezing in a couple extra acts that were bumped from the day before. There were more people around all day, whether up front with the bands, hanging in the beer tent, or just wandering through the park. Kudos to Saving Gigi and the other locals who pitched in to make this a reality. And remember: "folk music" isn't a genre tag, but a description of music that lives in a community, shared between performer and audience. [Also: you can check out a few more pictures from the day at the MFS facebook page.]

Still one of the hardest-working bands in the city, Lemon Bucket Orchestra are liable to pop up nearly anywhere and set off a party that anyone and their grandma can groove to. Their turbocharged Eastern European folk songs pack a powerful punch and it wasn't long after they started on this chilly evening that members of the crowd needed to start pulling off their jackets. Unsurprisingly, they ended their set in the middle of the crowd, on the hillside facing the stage, and then led the way to the nearby playground for a couple final singalongs, soliciting stories about what this spot — in their neighbourhood — meant to people.

* Thanks to Rob for passing along the title to the second song here.

Recording: The Golden Dogs

Artist: The Golden Dogs

Song: Do It For You

Recorded at Christie Pits ("Bloor Ossington Folk Festival"), September 22, 2013.

The Golden Dogs - Do It For You

Full review to follow. Starting out in living rooms and basements in its first year and piggybacking on the local street festival in its second, The Bloor Ossington Folk Festival took a big step up in size and complexity this year, all while holding fast to its mantra of "free music in shared community space". Settling into the topography of Christie Pits, this year's festival included two stages, a beer garden, food vendors and more. Sunday was chilly but dry, and the stages were busy all day, squeezing in a couple extra acts that were bumped from the day before. There were more people around all day, whether up front with the bands, hanging in the beer tent, or just wandering through the park. Kudos to Saving Gigi and the other locals who pitched in to make this a reality. And remember: "folk music" isn't a genre tag, but a description of music that lives in a community, shared between performer and audience. [Also: you can check out a few more pictures from the day at the MFS facebook page.]

Power pop charmers The Golden Dogs brought a whole bunch of new songs that were complete, thankfully, with their own customized title cards as usual. They make it seem easy (or in the case of Dave Azzolini's propensity for lurching around the stage like Angus Young auditioning for the Ministry of Silly Walks, downright goofy) but there's oodles of craft hidden just out of sight.

Recording: Bidiniband

Artist: Bidiniband

Songs: Legal Age Life at Variety Store [Rheostatics cover] + The Land Is Wild

Recorded at Christie Pits ("Bloor Ossington Folk Festival"), September 22, 2013.

Bidiniband - Legal Age Life at Variety Store

Bidiniband - The Land Is Wild

Full review to follow. Starting out in living rooms and basements in its first year and piggybacking on the local street festival in its second, The Bloor Ossington Folk Festival took a big step up in size and complexity this year, all while holding fast to its mantra of "free music in shared community space". Settling into the topography of Christie Pits, this year's festival included two stages, a beer garden, food vendors and more. Sunday was chilly but dry, and the stages were busy all day, squeezing in a couple extra acts that were bumped from the day before. There were more people around all day, whether up front with the bands, hanging in the beer tent, or just wandering through the park. Kudos to Saving Gigi and the other locals who pitched in to make this a reality. And remember: "folk music" isn't a genre tag, but a description of music that lives in a community, shared between performer and audience. [Also: you can check out a few more pictures from the day at the MFS facebook page.]

It's easy to take Dave Bidini and his crew for granted — on the surface, they're "just" a rock'n'roll band, four guys up on stage trying to amuse each other as much as they're trying to entertain the crowd. But besides their depth of experience (man, these guys can play), there's a little something in the lyrics of nearly every one of Bidini's songs, whether it's a secret whisper of Canadiana or an existential truth-bomb. Being able to reel off an impromptu version of a classic from his old band doesn't hurt either. As the sun burst out from the day's clouds in long, lazy golden-hour rays before evening made its way down to the park, this felt like a tasty moment to savour.

Oh, and P.S.: if the hockey-as-myth of the latter song here gets your heart a-flutter, do note that Bidini will be launching his twelfth book Keon and Me: My Search for the Lost Soul of the Leafs with a multimedia celebration at The Royal on October 4th.

Recording: catl

Artist: catl

Song: Family Tree Blues* Gateway Blues

Recorded at Christie Pits ("Bloor Ossington Folk Festival"), September 22, 2013.

catl - Gateway Blues

Full review to follow. Starting out in living rooms and basements in its first year and piggybacking on the local street festival in its second, The Bloor Ossington Folk Festival took a big step up in size and complexity this year, all while holding fast to its mantra of "free music in shared community space". Settling into the topography of Christie Pits, this year's festival included two stages, a beer garden, food vendors and more. Sunday was chilly but dry, and the stages were busy all day, squeezing in a couple extra acts that were bumped from the day before. There were more people around all day, whether up front with the bands, hanging in the beer tent, or just wandering through the park. Kudos to Saving Gigi and the other locals who pitched in to make this a reality. And remember: "folk music" isn't a genre tag, but a description of music that lives in a community, shared between performer and audience. [Also: you can check out a few more pictures from the day at the MFS facebook page.]

Plenty of new songs in catl's set — all signs are pointing toward their next album (to be recorded down in Memphis) being a doozy. The two-piece managed to fill the park with greasy dancin' grooves, but still invited a bunch of friends to join them on stage to close their set out — just right for this community-minded event.

* At the time, this was the working title, but I've updated it to reflect the final one.

Recording: Beams

Artist: Beams

Song: White Belly

Recorded at Christie Pits ("Bloor Ossington Folk Festival"), September 22, 2013.

Beams - White Belly

Full review to follow. Starting out in living rooms and basements in its first year and piggybacking on the local street festival in its second, The Bloor Ossington Folk Festival took a big step up in size and complexity this year, all while holding fast to its mantra of "free music in shared community space". Settling into the topography of Christie Pits, this year's festival included two stages, a beer garden, food vendors and more. Sunday was chilly but dry, and the stages were busy all day, squeezing in a couple extra acts that were bumped from the day before. There were more people around all day, whether up front with the bands, hanging in the beer tent, or just wandering through the park. Kudos to Saving Gigi and the other locals who pitched in to make this a reality. And remember: "folk music" isn't a genre tag, but a description of music that lives in a community, shared between performer and audience. [Also: you can check out a few more pictures from the day at the MFS facebook page.]

Banjo-y goodness from these art-country locals, overcoming a few sound problems while encouraging the sun to peek out from behind the clouds.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Recording: Julie Doiron

Artist: Julie Doiron

Songs: Tailor + Swan Pond

Recorded at Christie Pits ("Bloor Ossington Folk Festival"), September 21, 2013.

Julie Doiron - Tailor

Julie Doiron - Swan Pond

Full review to follow. Starting out in living rooms and basements in its first year and piggybacking on the local street festival in its second, The Bloor Ossington Folk Festival took a big step up in size and complexity this year, all while holding fast to its mantra of "free music in shared community space". Settling into the topography of Christie Pits, this year's festival included two stages, a beer garden, food vendors and more. Sadly, the weather didn't cooperate on the festival's first day, with a steady rain delaying the setup and keeping the crowds away from the park. Once things got started, it was good music to drive away the cold and damp, with the skies clearing up for the last few acts of the day. Kudos to Saving Gigi and the other locals who pitched in to make this a reality. And remember: "folk music" isn't a genre tag, but a description of music that lives in a community, shared between performer and audience. [Also: you can check out a few more pictures from the day at the MFS facebook page.]

Making a return from maternity leave (congratulations!), former area resident and Saving Gigi regular Julie Doiron was, as always, filled with self-doubt and joy as she played. Backed by Jenn Grant's rhythm section, Doiron capped off the day with a ramble through both older and more recent songs, gaining confidence as she played, as if returning to terrain she'd momentarily forgotten that she knew so well.

Recording: Pick a Piper

Artist: Pick a Piper

Song: Dené Sled

Recorded at Christie Pits ("Bloor Ossington Folk Festival"), September 21, 2013.

Pick a Piper - Dené Sled

Full review to follow. Starting out in living rooms and basements in its first year and piggybacking on the local street festival in its second, The Bloor Ossington Folk Festival took a big step up in size and complexity this year, all while holding fast to its mantra of "free music in shared community space". Settling into the topography of Christie Pits, this year's festival included two stages, a beer garden, food vendors and more. Sadly, the weather didn't cooperate on the festival's first day, with a steady rain delaying the setup and keeping the crowds away from the park. Once things got started, it was good music to drive away the cold and damp, with the skies clearing up for the last few acts of the day. Kudos to Saving Gigi and the other locals who pitched in to make this a reality. And remember: "folk music" isn't a genre tag, but a description of music that lives in a community, shared between performer and audience. [Also: you can check out a few more pictures from the day at the MFS facebook page.]

Pick A Piper's rhythmically-intense grooves were just the pick-me-up required as the evening's chill descended on the park. In the past the band has expanded and contracted depending on how many extra drummers they could fit in the room, but here they were a quartet, with Brad Weber on synths and percussion joined by drummers Angus Fraser and Dan Roberts — as well as trombone player Steve Ward, who had also appeared earlier in the day with Minotaurs.

Recording: Memoryhouse

Artist: Memoryhouse

Song: The Kids Were Wrong

Recorded at Christie Pits ("Bloor Ossington Folk Festival"), September 21, 2013.

Memoryhouse - The Kids Were Wrong

Full review to follow. Starting out in living rooms and basements in its first year and piggybacking on the local street festival in its second, The Bloor Ossington Folk Festival took a big step up in size and complexity this year, all while holding fast to its mantra of "free music in shared community space". Settling into the topography of Christie Pits, this year's festival included two stages, a beer garden, food vendors and more. Sadly, the weather didn't cooperate on the festival's first day, with a steady rain delaying the setup and keeping the crowds away from the park. Once things got started, it was good music to drive away the cold and damp, with the skies clearing up for the last few acts of the day. Kudos to Saving Gigi and the other locals who pitched in to make this a reality. And remember: "folk music" isn't a genre tag, but a description of music that lives in a community, shared between performer and audience. [Also: you can check out a few more pictures from the day at the MFS facebook page.]

Hadn't heard much from Memoryhouse since the end of their album promo cycle, and though there was no new material here, their melancholy-tinged bedroom pop was a good fit for the golden hour sunlight and pre-autumnal chill in the air.

Recording: Grand Analog

Artist: Grand Analog

Song: Around This Town

Recorded at Christie Pits ("Bloor Ossington Folk Festival"), September 21, 2013.

Grand Analog - Around This Town

Full review to follow. Starting out in living rooms and basements in its first year and piggybacking on the local street festival in its second, The Bloor Ossington Folk Festival took a big step up in size and complexity this year, all while holding fast to its mantra of "free music in shared community space". Settling into the topography of Christie Pits, this year's festival included two stages, a beer garden, food vendors and more. Sadly, the weather didn't cooperate on the festival's first day, with a steady rain delaying the setup and keeping the crowds away from the park. Once things got started, it was good music to drive away the cold and damp, with the skies clearing up for the last few acts of the day. Kudos to Saving Gigi and the other locals who pitched in to make this a reality. And remember: "folk music" isn't a genre tag, but a description of music that lives in a community, shared between performer and audience. [Also: you can check out a few more pictures from the day at the MFS facebook page.]

Like most artists at the fest, Grand Analog were celebrating the neighbourhood they live in. With a persistent rain falling on the crowd, the band played a shortened set to help keep the late-starting day on schedule, leading off with a tasty cover of "Let Your Backbone Slide" (to pay tribute to Maestro Fresh-Wes' ascension to Canada's Walk of Fame), and leaving the crowd wanting more after just three more jams.

Contest: Larry Ochs & Don Robinson

Jazz Avant: Larry Ochs & Don Robinson

Saturday, September 28, 2013 at The Music Gallery

This year's Jazz Avant series at the Music gallery launches with improvised music from some experienced but vital musicians. Soprano sax player Larry Ochs plays with a variety of combos (and may be best known for his work with the boundary-pushing ROVA) but is going to be raw and direct here in a duo set with "percussive dervish" Don Robinson. I don't need to say much more to sell this when I can simply point you at the likes of this:

Opening the night will be the inspired pairing of local hero Paul Dutton (of CCMC and many other projects), pitting his throat-wrangled voice-sounds against the elastic/eclectic rhythmic inventions of Joe Sorbara. Individually, they sometimes sound like this; together they'll sound like something else entirely:

Arraymusic + Paul Dutton - Snare, Kick, Rack and Floor

Joe Sorbara and Friends - Abakos [excerpt]

TICKETS + MORE INFO

Tickets are $20 at the door, $15 in advance and only $10 for MG members. You can get more info here (or on facebook if you wanna be social about it).

CONTEST

Courtesy of the Music Gallery, I have a pair of tickets to give away! To enter, shoot me an email to mechanicalforestsound@gmail.com, with "Larry Ochs & Don Robinson" 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 first thing in the morning on Friday, September 27th.

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, September 23, 2013

Concert Listings Roundup #11

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:

Dieter Moebius [of Cluster] (BRR / Man Made Hill) / Double Double Land 2013-09-26 (Thursday) [FB event]


This week's noteworthy shows:

Wavelength 575 (feat. Nat Baldwin / Justin Walter / Omhouse) / Monarch Tavern 2013-09-24 (Tuesday) [FB event]

The Kyle Brenders Quartet (Mike Gennaro/Nigel Taylor Duo) / Array Space 2013-09-25 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Devon Sproule / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2013-09-25 (Wednesday)

Doug Tielli / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2013-09-26 (Thursday)

DIANA [album release party!] (Empress Of) / The Great Hall 2013-09-26 (Thursday) [FB event]

Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet Orchestra & Taxidermy Co. with Special Guests [September Residency – Night 4] / The Dakota 2013-09-26 (Thursday) [FB event]

Interstellar Orchestra ["Toronto's own all-star free jazz orchestra"] / The Imperial Pub 2013-09-27 (Friday) [FB event]

Comanechi (Ell V Gore) / The Silver Dollar 2013-09-27 (Friday) [FB event]

Unsigned #26 (feat. Maylee Todd / AKUA / Paradise Animals) / Steam Whistle Brewing 2013-09-27 (Friday) [FB event]

Jazz Avant Series (feat. Larry Ochs & Don Robinson / Paul Dutton & Joe Sorbara / The Music Gallery 2013-09-28 (Saturday) [FB event]

Ian Svenonius [not a gig — talk + film screening relating to his new book Supernatural Strategies for Making a Rock 'n' Roll Group] / Double Double Land 2013-09-28 (Saturday) [FB event]

Tomomi Adachi [Tokyo sound poet] / Array Space 2013-09-29 (Sunday – afternoon workshop + evening concert) [FB event]

King Weather / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2013-09-29 (Sunday) [FB event]


Add these to your calendar:

Soundstreams: The Music of Arvo Pärt / Koerner Hall 2013-10-01 (Tuesday) [more info]

MV+EE (Tess Parks & The Good People) / The Shop under Parts & Labour 2013-10-02 (Wednesday) [FB event]

The Saffron Sect (Biblical / Ostrich Tuning / Tess Parks / Elissa Mielke) / The Silver Dollar Room 2013-10-04 (Friday) [FB event]

Nhapitapi / Waterfalls Indian Tapas and Bar 2013-10-04 (Friday) [more info]

Kosher Dill Spears (Body Help) / Holy Oak Café 2013-10-05 (Saturday) [FB event]

Rock The Line (feat. Sarah Harmer / Hayden / Minotaurs / more TBA) / Mel Lastman Square 2013-10-06 (Sunday) [more info]

Surinam (Greys / Dilly Dally / Wrong Hole) / The Silver Dollar Room 2013-10-11 (Friday) [FB event]

Wavelength 577 (feat. Sapphire Slows / HVYWTR + The Deeep) / Double Double Land 2013-10-11 (Friday) [FB event]

Crosswires (feat. Deciduous / Clara Engel / Good Conduct) / Handlebar 2013-10-27 (Sunday) [FB event]

The Last Pogo Jumps Again [comprehensive documentary on the first wave of T.O.'s punk/new wave scenes] / Big Picture Cinema 2013-11-01–2011-11-06 (multiple screenings) [FB event]

Phèdre [Golden Age release + Warehouse Party] (Petra Glynt / Datu / Ken Park) / 35 Strachan 2013-11-02 (Saturday) [FB event]

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Recording: Tom Carter

Artist: Tom Carter

Song: [excerpt from first piece]*

Recorded at Double Double Land, February 21, 2013.

Tom Carter - [excerpt from first piece]

Full review to follow. I wasn't familiar with Carter's work, either solo or as part of Charalambides, but this quickly pulled me in — slow-building gorgeousness, and a sort of tribute to the infinite possibilities of long-loop delay.

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

Recording: Beard Closet

Artist: Beard Closet

Song: [last part]*

Recorded at Double Double Land, February 21, 2013.

Beard Closet - [last part]

Full review to follow. Not one to just plunk down a heap of pedals and just tear off a different solo through the same effects, Phil Hamilton has revamped his tools into a DIY dual signal chain operation, building up a layer of noise on one set, unplugging, and working on another layer. For this outing, it suffices to say that on a night opening up for a couple visiting guitar-improv/noise heavyweights, Hamilton more than held his own.

* I'm not sure if this improvised piece had a title or not. Please leave a comment if you know!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Recording: Zoo Owl

Artist: Zoo Owl

Song: Twin Mirror

Recorded at Creatures Creating (Wavelength 574), September 20, 2013.

Zoo Owl - Twin Mirror

Full review to follow. Rounding out a night of some upstanding woozy pop sounds from Montréal was a set from this local performer (or is he a citizen of Saturn?). Shades of Doldrums' bent pop here, but this project brings cinematic ambitions and a strong visual sense to the forefront. Described as an experimental "wayfinding project", expect this Owl (who so far just has a few cryptic teasers online) to swoop in some unexpected directions.

Recording: YlangYlang

Artist: YlangYlang

Song: Liquid Warrior*

Recorded at Creatures Creating (Wavelength 574), September 20, 2013.

YlangYlang - Liquid Warrior

Full review to follow. A lovely night in the basement of gallery Creatures Creating, with several far-ranging variations of knob-twisting bent-pop on display as Wavelength played host to some folks associated with Montréal's Jeunesse Cosmique label. Catherine Debard's "noise feelings" solo project employed ethereal vocals and hazy synth pillows for some abstracted slo-jams. Hopefully this night will lead to some further exchanges from the other end of the 401.

* Thanks to Maggie Cho for passing the title to this one along!

Recording: Téléphone Maison

Artist: Téléphone Maison

Song: Tenté par Satan*

Recorded at Creatures Creating (Wavelength 574), September 20, 2013.

Téléphone Maison - Tenté par Satan

Full review to follow. There's a couple minor technical glitches here — the vocals get lost in the fog for a bit midway through, and the music gets cut abruptly at the end when a power bar got jarred. Yet somehow, that fits in alright with Alexis Brien's methods, where a slinky shuffle gets bent into something woozy and his crooning vox flip over into something you might start singing after a couple days wandering the desert. Definitely intriguing stuff.

* Thanks to a commenter for passing the title to this one along!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Recording: Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet

Artist: Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet

Songs: Fortune Tellin' Chicken / Plastics For 500, Bob / Customized + Good Cop Bad Cop / Reid's Situation / Off Our Back Conrad Black

Recorded at The Dakota Tavern (September residency – Week 3), September 19, 2013.

Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet - Good Cop Bad Cop / Reid's Situation / Off Our Back Conrad Black

Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet - Fortune Tellin' Chicken / Plastics For 500, Bob / Customized

Full review to follow. Sometimes it's a good world. Following last summer's emotional, vital reunion spectacular the reformulated Shadowy Men have stuck around. They've been playing early shows at the Dakota every Thursday this month, a casual + cozy affair with the band playing two sets of their rapid-fire songs (a couple volleys are reproduced here). There's one more week left in the run, so go catch 'em if you haven't yet. Plus, they'll also be playing alongside The Sadies this Saturday at The Garrison, reprising their full-on costumed re-interpretation of Alice Cooper's Love It To Death.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Recording: Not The Wind, Not The Flag

Artist: Not The Wind, Not The Flag

Song: [second piece, excerpt]

Recorded at The Tranzac (Main Hall), September 17, 2013.

Not The Wind, Not The Flag - [second piece, excerpt]

Full review to follow. Celebrating the release of new album Garments of Light (on Healing Power Recordings), Brandon Valdivia and Colin Fisher (who was also celebrating the release of a solo album) played an extended set. The first piece had a lot of subtle variations (including reverberating gong, flutes and saxophone) while the second was a good ol' fashioned spiritual avant-raveup for guit and drums.

No two shows are the same, so while while you can expect something rather different when NTW cross paths with William Parker at next month's X Avant festival, it stands to be an equally excellent occasion.

Recording: Forget the Times

Artist: Forget the Times

Song: excerpt*

Recorded at The Tranzac (Main Hall), September 17, 2013.

Forget the Times - excerpt

Full review to follow. The night's visitors (up from Kalamazoo) set the stage for headliners Not The Wind, Not The Flag by showing they can play with shred-y aggression but also know how to ease off and let some space in between the sounds.

* I am assuming this was an untitled improvization, but I'm not familiar enough with FTT's m.o. to be sure. Please leave a comment if you happen to know if it indeed has a title.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Recording: Sun Stone Revolvers

Artist: Sun Stone Revolvers

Song: She Gets Back

Recorded at El Mocambo, September 14, 2013.

Sun Stone Revolvers - She Gets Back

Full review to follow. With their name recently expanded (from plain ol' Revolvers) and their sophomore album finally being released, the band had time to celebrate in a stretched-out headlining set. It's also no surprise that the band has yet more material up their sleeves, with a third of their set composed of songs newer than the ones on their long-simmering album.

Recording: SPECTRE

Artist: SPECTRE

Song: On The Telephone

Recorded at El Mocambo, September 14, 2013.

SPECTRE - On The Telephone

Full review to follow. This local quartet throws together a few genres in their self-descriptive tags, but "blues glam grunge" goes some way to getting a handle on their sound — as if the leather-jacket toughs immersed themselves in Roxy Music before passing around the whisky bottle and cutting loose. It was mentioned that there's a video for this song (just posted to their bandcamp) forthcoming, which will presumably complement some of their previous sexy efforts.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Contest: Wavelength 574

Wavelength 574

Friday, September 20, 2013

It's nice to see that WL is mixing up high-concept/higher-profile shows with good ol' fashioned nights in a basement with five bands on offer for five bucks. It's shows like this where you really get to see stuff you've never heard of before and make some new discoveries. Partnering with Montréal label Jeunesse Cosmique (specializing in "musique spatiale") means that chance for new discovery is even greater, with locals Zoo Owl and Bile Sister opening and closing the show in a big T.O hug for visitors YlangYlang, Téléphone Maison and Hazy (Trafalgar) Mystique.

I'm not too familiar with any of that stuff, but once again, that's half of the charm here. Plus, some digging around suggests this should be tasty — I'm already partial to the tinny haze in Téléphone Maison's recordings:

TICKETS + MORE INFO

This will be going down in the basement of Creatures Creating (822 Dundas W.) and will indeed only set you back five bucks. (Any other information you could want is probably over in the facebook event.)

CONTEST

But as if that's not cheap enough, courtesy of the shadowy WL cabal I'm giving away a free spot (plus one!) on the guestlist. To enter, shoot me an email to mechanicalforestsound@gmail.com, with "Wavelength 574" in the title and your name in the body. Or, to make it easier, you can also enter via twitter or facebook. I'll randomly draw a winner before I go to bed on Thursday, September 19th.

Concert Listings Roundup #10

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:

Not the Wind, Not the Flag (Forget the Times / Matt "Doc" Dunn) / The Tranzac (Main Hall) 2013-09-17 (Tuesday) [FB event]

Healing Power album release party, good vibes, and music from some of the city's finest improvisers. If you've never seen NTW,NTF in action, this is a great time to get on board with one of the best bands in T.O.

Bloor Ossington Folk Festival (Saturday feat. Julie Doiron / Pick A Piper / Memoryhouse / Sandman VC / Grand Analog / Minotaurs / Alex Lukashevsky and Sunday feat. Lemon Bucket Orchestra / The Golden Dogs / Bidiniband / catl / The Schomberg Fair / Ken Whiteley / Beams) / Christie Pits Park 2013-09-21/22 (Saturday/Sunday) [FB event – Sat/Sun]

Now in its third year, the community-minded BOFF brings together a tasty variety of music. There's a full weekend of smaller, late-night shows in various venues worth checking out, but the cream of the crop is at the (free, all-ages) main stage in Christie Pits.


This week's noteworthy shows:

Audiopollination #10 (feat. Nilan Perera + Ted Phillips / Germaine Liu/Karen Ng/Bea Labikova) / Array Space 2013-09-17 (Tuesday) [FB event]

Pere Ubu / Lee's Palace 2013-09-18 (Wednesday)

WedGoPop (feat. catl / Beams / Taylor Knox) / Supermarket 2013-09-18 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet Orchestra & Taxidermy Co. with Special Guests [September Residency – Night 3] / The Dakota 2013-09-19 (Thursday) [FB event]

Prince Nifty (Weaves) / Holy Oak Café 2013-09-19 (Thursday) [FB event]

The Whirly Birds (The Auras) / The Sister 2013-09-20 (Friday) [FB event]

HSY [EP release!] (the beverleys / John Milner You're So Boss / Dirty Frigs) / The White House 2013-09-20 (Friday) [FB event]

Wavelength 574 (feat. Zoo Owl / Ylangylang / Téléphone Maison / Hazy (Trafalgar) Mystique / Bile Sister) / Creatures Creating 2013-09-20 (Friday) [FB event]

Tony Malaby/Nick Fraser Quartet / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2013-09-20 (Friday) [FB event]

Bloor Ossington Folk Festival, Night One (feat. Taylor Knox / Jessy Bell-Smith / Stephanie Cameron / Omhouse) / Saving Gigi 2013-09-20 (Friday) [FB event]

The Big Sound [2 Year Anniversary!] / The Great Hall 2013-09-20 (Friday) [FB event]

Michael Morley [of The Dead C!] (Tom Carter / Beard Closet / Double Double Land 2013-09-21 (Saturday) [FB event]

WTCHS + DAS RAD [joint 7" release!] (I Smell Blood / p0st3rb0y) / Handlebar 2013-09-21 (Saturday) [FB event]

Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet + The Sadies [performing Alice Cooper's "Love It To Death"] (Legato Vipers) / The Garrison 2013-09-21 (Saturday)

Bloor Ossington Folk Festival, Night Two (feat. Public Animal (ft. Ian Blurton) / By Divine Right / Little Foot Long Foot) / Baltic Avenue 2013-09-21 (Saturday) [FB event]


Add these to your calendar:

Dieter Moebius [Cluster] (BRR / Man Made Hill) / Double Double Land 2013-09-26 (Thursday) [FB event]

Unsigned #26 (feat. Maylee Todd / AKUA / Paradise Animals) / Steam Whistle Brewing 2013-09-27 (Friday) [FB event]

Ian Svenonius [not a gig — talk + film screening relating to his new book Supernatural Strategies for Making a Rock 'n' Roll Group] / Double Double Land 2013-09-28 (Saturday) [FB event]

Soundstreams with Tõnu Kaljuste + Choir 21: "The Music Of Arvo Pärt" / Koerner Hall 2013-10-01 (Tuesday) [FB event]

Dust Adam Dust (Moonwood / roboteyes) / Clinton's 2013-10-02 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Crosswires (feat. Moonwood / Pale Eyes / This Mess) / Handlebar 2013-10-06 (Sunday) [FB event]

New Music Concerts: "STEFAN meets ANTON and MORTY meets JOHN" / Betty Oliphant Theatre 2013-10-06 (Sunday) [FB event]

Ketamines (Mexican Slang / Freak Heat Waves / Viet Cong) / Izakaya Sushi House 2013-10-07 (Monday) [FB event]

Toy Piano Composers: "TPC Turns 5!" / Gallery 345 2013-10-12 (Saturday) [FB event]

Spectrum: The World Through Frames Without Lenses / The Annex Theatre 2013-12-12 (Thursday) [more info]

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Recording: Walk North

Artist: Walk North

Song: Heart Attack

Recorded in the basement at a house party, September 13, 2013.

Walk North - Heart Attack

Full review to follow. The dissolution of Anagram has led to much-anticipated/fuckin'-good-right-outta-the-gate Surinam, but has also bequeathed us Walk North, wherein Anagram bassist Jeff Peers has moved to guitar in this post-hardcore-ish trio. They've only played a couple local shows so far, and those have been on the same bills as Surinam. Makes sense, as there's a some musical common ground at play, though in Walk North the guit/bass/drums stay interlocked in more evenhanded tussle with Peers' growly vocals fighting their way through the morass. The band doesn't have much of an online presence yet, so here's a taste of what you can expect.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Recording: Spectrum's "Interface"

Artist: Spectrum's "Interface"

Songs: Touch (composed by Dave Wall / Featured Improviser Matthew Roberts) + Looking Back (composed by Heather Segger / Featured Improviser Jim Lewis)

Recorded at Measure ("2013/2014 Season Launch Party"), September 13, 2013.

Spectrum's "Interface" - Touch [edited excerpt]

Spectrum's "Interface" - Looking Back [edited excerpt]

Full review to follow. Taking their musical ideas out of the concert hall and into the bar on a Friday night, local "chamber jazz" composers' collective Spectrum also pushed into some new technological/musical territory with Matt Roberts' "Interface". This audience-participatory system involves an improvising musician in the centre of a ring of eight speakers, each with a contact switch. The circuit is switched on and a pre-recorded loop will play whenever anyone touches the switch and the musician at the same time. As more people take part, impromptu collaborations are possible as longer chains of human contact can be used to set off multiple samples at once. This creates an ever-shifting tableau for the player to react to.

These field recordings give just a taste of The Interface in the wild, with some crowd murmurings audible in the background. The best spot to hear this is right inside that circle of speakers, and as an audience member, you're welcome to do just that. A successful experiment with hugely flexible potential, this definitely calls for a re-mount. In the meantime, you can check out a few more photos at the MFS facebook page.

This night also served as the launch of Spectrum's third season of programming, with three concerts of new, local compositions on the horizon. If you want to support fresh musical thinking from a decidedly non-fusty ensemble, this is for you. And they're keeping things affordable, with tickets running a reasonable $15 each — another reason to show your support.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Recording: Toronto Homicide Squad

Artist: Toronto Homicide Squad

Song: It Takes a Lot to Kill a Man

Recorded at 961A College St., September 13, 2013.

Toronto Homicide Squad - It Takes a Lot to Kill a Man

Full review to follow. The sound of a riot after you've taken a cosh to the head and there's blood running into your ear canal. Something's getting woozy, and you can't tell if it's the world or just in your mind. Noise, panic and confusion provided by drummer Gideon Steinberg (ex-Soupcans) and bassist Brandon Lim (HSY, Teen Tits Wild Wives).

Recording: Man Made Hill

Artist: Man Made Hill

Song: Speed Dating

Recorded at 961A College St., September 13, 2013.

Man Made Hill - Speed Dating

Full review to follow. Some eras get the James Brown they deserve. Some eras get the James Brown they need. Our era gets Randy Gagne, a.k.a. Man Made Hill.