MFS has turned six! My introductory thoughts on this landmark can be found here, but long story short: I asked some folks to pick some of their favourites to help me celebrate.
Today's list is from James Lindsay, who I know as a well-dressed man and co-proprietor of beloved local label Pleasence Records.
Beautiful recording of what's become Black Walls' signature piece. In the right environment "PTSD" is intensely affecting, silencing the crowd as guitar and vocal loops build on top on themselves until reaching a climatic, otherworldly wall of sound. I've seen people publicly cry during this song.
I can't think of another current band I enjoy watching live more than New Fries. I also love this song and was disappointed it didn't make the Fresh Face Forward EP, though you can find it on the Mechanical Forest Sound compilation I put out with Reel Cod. I think this recording nicely captures their live show, where their jagged post-punk teeters, at times assertively awkward, on slipping into performance art.
This was my first time seeing Moonwood as a four piece, at Feast in the East's short-lived home in Little India. The band had a lot of energy that night. I, along with everyone else I spoke to, was completely gobsmacked by this set, which never seemed to let up, charging from one motorik voyage to the next without interruption.
Toronto supergroup comprised of Sexy Merlin, Man Made Hill, Jesse Locke (Century Palm/Tough Age), and Brandon Hocura (Polyphasic Recordings and Studio). They firmly capture the mutant-disco of '80s NYC, invoking flavors of Arthur Russell, ESG, and Liquid Liquid. This is from their first public performance, jamming on Sexy Merlin's "Heater", and by the crowd's reaction, you can tell people were feeling it.
Brides blew many a mind in their brief existence. Channelling the controlled chaos of the Contortions, but much darker, they helped pave the way for much of the no-wave inspired art-punk in Toronto right now. I saw them every chance I got.
The free-psych of Colin Fisher and Brandon Valdivia must be seen live to be fully experienced. At this point is safe to say that they are two of the city's best players, with jazz-tight chops, who are associated with countless, diverse artists, and have their own notable solo projects as well. They come from the tradition of explorative guitar and drum duos, yet every time I catch NTWNTF my mind struggles to grasp that human beings are capable of making this music. Intensely meditative. Vociferously introspective.
You can always click on the tags below to look for more stuff from these artists. Has there been a half-dozen songs posted here that made an impact on you? If you'd like to get in on the action and make a list, feel free to send me an email: firstname.lastname@example.org.