Friday, March 24, 2017

Recording: Lîla Ensemble

Artist: Lîla Ensemble

Songs: [two excerpts]

Recorded at The Tranzac's Main Hall (Somewhere There Creative Music Festival – Show 2), February 25, 2017.

Lîla Ensemble - [excerpt 1]

Lîla Ensemble - [excerpt 2]

The festival's first afternoon show was focused on improvisation in movement and its relationship to music. This set from the Lîla Ensemble was nestled between a solo dance from Amelia Ehrhardt and a panel discussion on the topic. Although co-inspired improvising collaborations between dance and music aren't uncommon, Lîla takes things further than most by dissolving the musician/dancer separation. With the exception of dancer Jessica Houghton, everyone else in the ensemble's participation moved back and forth between playing and moving, creating a fluid and shifting dynamic.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Recording: Body Double

Artist: Body Double

Song: unknown*

Recorded at The Tranzac's Southern Cross Lounge (Somewhere There Creative Music Festival – Show 1 late-night afterparty), February 24, 2017.

Body Double - unknown

Once again, the Somewhere There Music Festival offered an oasis of local creativity, tightly bundled into five events over three days. Leading off, as always, with a community member's reflections, the first show featured a talk from David Dacks on building relationships and finding a project's true purpose while striving to program forward-looking music. Healing Power was given the task of programming the late-night sets in the Southern Cross after things had wrapped up in the Main Hall, presenting the debut of this new collaboration between New Positions' Vic Cheong and Bile Sister's Julie Reich. There were elements of each of their bands' sounds in play here, in a set with a few already-polished gems (like this melodica-driven reggae number) alongside some tracks that felt more like works in progress. "Don't show me the rough cut, show me the final version," a sampled/looped conversation between the pair cheekily intoned between songs. That recorded banter was a repeating presence, making this feel like a glimpse into the pair's scrapbook, mindspace and practice space with chatter about identity and reality being processed into Bechdel-tested avant-pop.

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

Recording: Craig Dunsmuir and Dun-Dun Band

Artist: Craig Dunsmuir and Dun-Dun Band

Song: unknown*

Recorded at The Tranzac's Main Hall (Somewhere There Creative Music Festival – Show 1), February 24, 2017.

Craig Dunsmuir and Dun-Dun Band - unknown

Once again, the Somewhere There Music Festival offered an oasis of local creativity, tightly bundled into five events over three days. Leading off, as always, with a community member's reflections, the first show featured a talk from David Dacks on building relationships and finding a project's true purpose while striving to program forward-looking music. Craig Dunsmuir's meticulously-patterned grooves once again were a standout, with the seven-piece band moving through a tasty set of polyrhythmic riffs. Brodie West was filling in on alto here for Karen Ng, adding a bit of his own sound to the mix.

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

Recording: Nick Fraser New Quartet

Artist: Nick Fraser New Quartet

Song: Sketch 43

Recorded at The Tranzac's Main Hall (Somewhere There Creative Music Festival – Show 1), February 24, 2017.

Nick Fraser New Quartet - Sketch 43

Once again, the Somewhere There Music Festival offered an oasis of local creativity, tightly bundled into five events over three days. Leading off, as always, with a community member's reflections, the first show featured a talk from David Dacks on building relationships and finding a project's true purpose while striving to program forward-looking music. From there, the music took over, with several sketches from Nick Fraser's quartet, which is maybe not "new" and certainly subject to some versatility in its lineup — though I had seen this same foursome at least once before. Tasty layers of sound, anchored by Fraser's percussive approaches ranging from sproingy spring ratchet sounds to abstract beat patter.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Recording: Phèdre

Artist: Phèdre

Song: unknown*

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 3), February 19, 2017.

Phèdre - unknown

The festival's last blast saw the stage stripped of the previous night's drumkit and stacks of amps — no surprise, as this was co-presented with Silent Shout, putting the accent on electronic rhythms and just a few dance grooves. Adding their own shiny foil and projections to the mix, Phèdre closed things out as if they were hosting their own post-apocalyptic guerrilla street party. Hinting at their next evolution, the pair brought out a series of rappers (Han Han, Casey Garcia, Arowbe and Lil Gae) to throw down on some new tracks, including an all-in posse cut. They had plenty fun when they were on their own, too, as this ode to Tinder suggests.

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

Recording: HanHan

Artist: HanHan

Song: Kailan Kaya

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 3), February 19, 2017.

HanHan - Kailan Kaya

The festival's last blast saw the stage stripped of the previous night's drumkit and stacks of amps — no surprise, as this was co-presented with Silent Shout, putting the accent on electronic rhythms and just a few dance grooves. After seeing HanHan take over the dancefloor at Long Winter, I had a bit of an idea what was in store for this set — though that made me all the more excited to watch her win over a crowd (who mostly didn't know her stuff) cheer her like a seasoned headliner by set's end. Again sharing space with a trio from the HATAW dance crew, this was a high-energy, closely-choreographed set that was a joy to behold. And HanHan's tracks have choruses that you can sing along to, even if you might have to wait 'til you get home to read up on her empowering lyrics.

Recording: Emay

Artist: Emay

Song: Bakkah: The History of Humankind

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 3), February 19, 2017.

Emay - Bakkah: The History of Humankind

The festival's last blast saw the stage stripped of the previous night's drumkit and stacks of amps — no surprise, as this was co-presented with Silent Shout, putting the accent on electronic rhythms and just a few dance grooves. This Hamiltonian producer + MC was the night's key discovery for me — I was taken with his cerebral flow right from the start, but when he dropped a Leonard Cohen sample I was fully convinced. Although there were some bip-bap rappity-rap tracks, Emay's main mode was more in the realm of woke sleepwalking, dropping rhymes with eyes closed as if he were dreaming the lyrics as he paced up and down the stage. As the track title here implies (and on the rest of his brand new Ilah album), he's got his mind on the macro, looking at the cosmic big-picture.

Recording: FIN

Artist: FIN

Song: Opula

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 3), February 19, 2017.

FIN - Opula

The festival's last blast saw the stage stripped of the previous night's drumkit and stacks of amps — no surprise, as this was co-presented with Silent Shout, putting the accent on electronic rhythms and just a few dance grooves. The open stage created more room for General Chaos' swirling visuals to stand out, and Rebecca "Fin" Simonetti (a savvy visual artist herself) worked with that, taking the stage all in white. Expatriated from the city, it's been a treat to see her back in town for a couple gigs lately and on this night she seemed to bring some extra energy to her tracks. They'll finally be getting a life off the stage as well, with the imminent release of Ice Pix.

Recording: Hush Pup

Artist: Hush Pup

Song: unknown*

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 3), February 19, 2017.

Hush Pup - unknown

The festival's last blast saw the stage stripped of the previous night's drumkit and stacks of amps — no surprise, as this was co-presented with Silent Shout, putting the accent on electronic rhythms and just a few dance grooves. With Hush Pup playing as a duo on this night there was some extra room on stage as well. That didn't throw the band off their pace as they shared their ethereal textures and 4AD dreams. The band's rhythms evoke more swaying than outright dancing but they're at their best when the songs lose all contact with terra firma and start to float skyward.

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

Monday, March 20, 2017

Concert Listings Roundup #192

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:

Crosswires [series relaunch!] (feat. Baa / Good Conduct / Dave from Ghostlight) / The Baby G 2017-03-20 (Monday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Just showing up and being a little enthusiastic are two of the most profound and revolutionary things you can do — that's at the heart of the social gospel as taught by Doc Pickles, a longtime MC and show presenter as a part of Wavelength (in its "classic" era) and his own spin-off Crosswires. The series is fundamentally democratic from both sides of the stage — just PWYC and come hang out... then start a band and get up and play. This longtime labour of love is shifting over a night (Mondays are are new Sundays) and settling into a new home at The Baby G.


This week's noteworthy shows:

Riverrun / The Emmet Ray 2017-03-20 (Monday) [FB event]

Jab Band [Liam Mitro/Luan Phung/Chris Pruden/Matthew Chalmers/Julian Anderson-Bowes — "March Rexidency"] / The Rex Hotel 2017-03-21 (Tuesday – early set @ 6:30! PWYC!) [FB event]

Billy Moon (Fresh Snow / CO/NTRY / WHOOP-Szo) / The Horseshoe Tavern 2017-03-22 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Bellwether 4 / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2017-03-22 (Wednesday)

Ashkenaz Festival, Small World Music & Batuki Music present (feat. AvevA Dese / The Barnes/Woldemichael Ethiojazz Quartet) / Lula Lounge 2017-03-23 (Thursday) [FB event]

Artificial Sounds presents (feat. Schwefelgelb / Kontravoid) / Bambi's 2017-03-23 (Thursday) [FB event]

Paul Linklater and José Contreras / The Cameron House 2017-03-24 (Friday – early set @ 6 p.m.!) [FB event]

The Two Koreas (Not Of) / The Dakota Tavern 2017-03-24 (Friday – early show!) [FB event]

Long Winter 5.4 (feat. Deliluh / Leanne Simpson / Protruders / Doom Tickler / Bonnie Trash / Bunny / HEX / Midge / Clamaglamza / Joel Eel / Sistem) / Gladstone Hotel 2017-03-24 (Friday – all ages! PWYC!) [FB event]

Corrodesion presents: Audio Bleed (feat. Inchoate / Hybrid Frequency / Johan Seaton / Panic Engines) / Belljar Café 2017-03-24 (Friday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Zuze & Iva [folk-jazz ensemble merging Iranian melodies and afrobeat rhythms meets Rankin Inlet throat singer] / Small World Music Centre 2017-03-24 (Friday) [FB event]

Faster Presents: Spring Sounds (feat. Heraclitus Akimbo / Faster / Deenzi) / Gerrard Art Space 2017-03-25 (Saturday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Continuum Contemporary Music: PIVOT [new music from emerging composers Rebecca Bruton, Maxime Corbeil-Perron, Juro Kim Feliz, Beavan Flanagan, Evelin Ramon, Bekah Simms, Cindy Chen] / The Music Gallery 2017-03-25 (Saturday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Kristian North Group (Fountain / Man Made Hill / Greydini) / The Baby G 2017-03-25 (Saturday) [FB event]

Fire in Heaven: Label Launch (feat. Jay Holy / BABEL / Bodies That Matter / Man Meets Bear / David Jones / YlangYlang) / Array Space 2017-03-25 (Saturday – PWYC! all ages!)POSTPONED![FB event]

The Courtneys (Jay Som) / The Garrison 2017-03-26 (Sunday) [FB event]

Toronto Creative Music Lab Fundraiser Launch Party (feat. Patchwork / Stereoscope) / Array Space 2017-03-26 (Sunday – PWYC!) [FB event]


Add these to your calendar:

Reminder: This post only contains this week's updates — the full listings can always be found over on the right-hand sidebar!

Array Session #46 (feat. Nidus) / Array Space 2017-03-28 (Tuesday – PWYC!) [more info]

Piano Party #10 (feat. Tom Richards / Laura Barrett / Kat Goldma) / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2017-03-29 (Wednesday – early!) [FB event]

ΔNZOLΔ / Pursuit Grooves / Josh Grant) / Handlebar 2017-03-30 (Thursday) [FB event]

Wearenotwhoweare (Ghostkeeper / Father Christmas / No Frills) / Monarch Tavern 2017-04-02 (Sunday) [FB event]

Crosswires (feat. Doc Pickles / Abigail Lapell / Chardon-Marie [members of Mean Red Spiders, Neck/Christiana, Soft Copy, Ghostlight]) / The Baby G 2017-04-03 (Monday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Track Could Bend #25: Second Anniversary All-Star Spectacular! [past performers return for improvised "bands from a hat" sets!] (feat. Allison Cameron/Fae Sirois/Benjamin Hackman/Michael Lynn/Aaron Corbett/Neil Wiernik/Justin Haynes/Brian Abbott/Chris Adriaanse/Patrick O'Reilly/Ian McPhedran/Laura Swankey/Jesse Levine/Del Stephen/Mike Smith/someone's memory/Bryan W. Bray/Christine Bougie and more TBA!) / The Steady Café 2017-04-04 (Tuesday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Casey Mecija (Char Aragoza) / Drake Underground 2017-04-07 (Friday) [FB event]

Come Back Barbara (Slutcode / Groin Swivel) / Monarch Tavern 2017-04-07 (Friday) [FB event]

Owen Pallett / Longboat Hall 2017-04-08 (Saturday) [FB event]

Crossed Wires (Tough Age / Klarka Weinwurm / Protruders) / Monarch Tavern 2017-04-09 (Sunday) [FB event]

Crosswires (feat. Doc Pickles / Communism / Faiyaz and the Wasted Chances) / The Baby G 2017-04-10 (Monday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Tone Deaf Culture Presents: Toronto Noise #6 (feat. Cares / Rampancy / Lumi Krysztal / Aaron Corbet) / The Smiling Buddha (basement) 2017-04-12 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Fresh Flesh (Girls Rituals / Widdows95 / Valeroo) / The Steady Café 2017-04-13 (Thursday) [FB event]

Colin Fisher/Victor Cirone (ZOË / James Beardmore/Jakob Rehlinger) / Saving Gigi 2017-04-13 (Thursday) [FB event]

Jon Mckiel (Cousins) / Monarch Tavern 2017-04-15 (Saturday) [FB event]

The Music Gallery's Departures Series (feat. Peter Evans Ensemble / Sam Weinberg/Chris Welcome/Ben Bennett / Not The Wind, Not The Flag) / Array Space 2017-04-16 (Sunday) [FB event]

Small World Asian Music Series (feat. Upanishads) / Small World Music Centre 2017-04-16 (Sunday) [FB event]

Nailbiter (Cares/New Tendencies/Johan Seaton) / The Steady Café 2017-04-23 (Sunday) [FB event]

Suuns (Doomsquad / Peeling) / The Silver Dollar Room 2017-04-27 (Thursday) [FB event]

Zoo Owl (Ghost Twin / Plazas / Loji) / Handlebar 2017-05-13 (Wednesday) [FB event]


Mixcloud corner:

  • This week's Drone Brunch mix has some profound drift in the middle, with Ann Southam's masterful "Seastill" and a response from its spiritual kin in No Colour Blue.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Recording: North Atlantic Drift

Artist: North Atlantic Drift

Song: [excerpt]

Recorded at The Gladstone Hotel's Melody Bar (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Drone Brunch), February 19, 2016.

North Atlantic Drift - [excerpt]

An interesting little sonic and social experiment offering a juxtaposition of the clatter of plates, the clink of cutlery and the murmurs of conversation with some ambient sounds. Watching the brunch crowd in their natural environment, there'd often be a moment of realization a minute or two after they sat down that there was live music being performed on stage. It all seemed to fit together into a reasonably cozy zone. Seguing seamlessly in from the previous set, North Atlantic Drift mapped some icy Eno-esque seas of before slipping into more of a Vangelis zone, as if the brunch crowd were stopping into Blade Runner's Los Angeles 2019 for their eggs benny.

[You could expect some drone-drifty sounds (and less background chatter!) at Wavelength's Don't Speak II show, this Saturday (March 18th) at The Baby G. Performances from Kyle Bobby Dunn, Off World, Bomb & Body and Zone Support in an environment where talking is forbidden.]

Recording: Kat Estacio

Artist: Kat Estacio

Song: [edited excerpt]

Recorded at The Gladstone Hotel's Melody Bar (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Drone Brunch), February 19, 2016.

Kat Estacio - [edited excerpt]

An interesting little sonic and social experiment offering a juxtaposition of the clatter of plates, the clink of cutlery and the murmurs of conversation with some ambient sounds. Watching the brunch crowd in their natural environment, there'd often be a moment of realization a minute or two after they sat down that there was live music being performed on stage. It all seemed to fit together into a reasonably cozy zone. Kat Estacio (also of Pantayo) played first, mixing MIDI sounds with some kulintang gongs — as well as some curls of quiet feedback seeping in from the mics. That might have given the set a slightly different timbre than originally intended, but it helped to give it the feeling of a warm, fuzzy sound-blanket.

[You could expect some drone-drifty sounds (and less background chatter!) at Wavelength's Don't Speak II show, this Saturday (March 18th) at The Baby G. Performances from Kyle Bobby Dunn, Off World, Bomb & Body and Zone Support in an environment where talking is forbidden.]

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Recording: Julie Doiron & The Wrong Guys

Artist: Julie Doiron & The Wrong Guys

Songs: Wanted + Farther*

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 2), February 18, 2017.

Julie Doiron & The Wrong Guys - Wanted

Julie Doiron & The Wrong Guys - Farther

Without the inexpensive energy-drink RSVP crowd jamming the place early on (and the return of General Chaos' swirling lights) this felt like a proper Wavelength. Programming-wise, this was the "rock" night, giving things a proper Saturday night feel. This collaboration between Julie Doiron, the Cancer Bats' rhythm section and Eamon McGrath has been a part-time affair for five years now, so it's exciting to see it entering a new phase. Retreating to collaborate on some new songs, there's now an album in the can and the band was eager to showcase them in this set. That lead to some new elements — more than just Doiron's songs being covered with an extra dollop of heaviness, there were signs of a group dynamic emerging. Joking that she was jacked up on Altoids and lozenges, Doiron embraced the raw punk fury of these songs. With a fully-stocked merch table and everything, there's apparently more to look forward to, whenever this album makes its way out into the world.

* These were gleaned from the setlist, so they may be partial or temporary titles — I will update as more clarity emerges.

Recording: Fake Palms

Artist: Fake Palms

Song: unknown*

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 2), February 18, 2017.

Fake Palms - unknown

Without the inexpensive energy-drink RSVP crowd jamming the place early on (and the return of General Chaos' swirling lights) this felt like a proper Wavelength. Programming-wise, this was the "rock" night, giving things a proper Saturday night feel. Now with an EP to go along with their debut album, Fake Palms were a little evolved and streamlined since I last saw 'em. Still working more in the terrain of dynamics than hooks, things are nevertheless a bit more pulled apart — that means there's a bit of room to explore in these sonic rooms, even if the walls still come at you with the force of an onslaught of sound.

[Fake Palms will be playing the last night at the Silver Dollar on Sunday, April 30th with METZ and New Fries.]

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

Recording: FET.NAT

Artist: FET.NAT

Song: Caquette

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 2), February 18, 2017.

FET.NAT - Caquette

Without the inexpensive energy-drink RSVP crowd jamming the place early on (and the return of General Chaos' swirling lights) this felt like a proper Wavelength. Programming-wise, this was the "rock" night, giving things a proper Saturday night feel. I'd been told the past few times that Hull's FET.NAT were in town that they were a band one simply had to catch live, and this first exposure proved that to be the case. Clearly an unknown quality to most of the crowd, they elicited headliner-level approval by the end of their relentlessly-entertaining set. With no wave sax spatters, mousetrap bass grooves and catscratch guitar, this had plenty hints of the agitated funk tradition of groups like The Contortions. The selling point as a stage spectacle was the agitated collection of gesticulations from monsieur J-F No, a frontman with the right sense of absurdity (and what we might call un soupçon du jambon) gleefully mocking the band and the crowd, all while marshalling them with a series of Wile E. Coyote-esque signs and occasional bullhorn interventions.

Recording: WHOOP-Szo

Artist: WHOOP-Szo

Song: Genocide

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 2), February 18, 2017.

WHOOP-Szo - Genocide

Without the inexpensive energy-drink RSVP crowd jamming the place early on (and the return of General Chaos' swirling lights) this felt like a proper Wavelength. Programming-wise, this was the "rock" night, giving things a proper Saturday night feel. These Canadian Shield space rock road warriors sounded absolutely huge in the Garrison's PA, with thundering drums and thrumming keybs creating a howl of hurt and redemption. With a lot of conceptual heaviness on the topics their songs address, it's no wonder they're worried about when rock'n'roll is gonna soothe their souls.

[WHOOP-Szo are back in town next week (Wednesday, March 22nd), playing alongside Fresh Snow at the Horseshoe.]

Recording: Helena Deland

Artist: Helena Deland

Song: Aix

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 2), February 18, 2017.

Helena Deland - Aix

Without the inexpensive energy-drink RSVP crowd jamming the place early on (and the return of General Chaos' swirling lights) this felt like a proper Wavelength. Programming-wise, this was the "rock" night, giving things a proper Saturday night feel. Montréal's Helena Deland started the night, leading off on her own, delivering her sentiments at a mellow saunter before being joined by a band to amp things up a bit. Her uncluttered arrangements mostly putting the focus on her lyrics, but there was still room for some classic rock flourishes, like the outro to this one.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Concert Listings Roundup #191

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 726: Don't Speak II (feat. Kyle Bobby Dunn / Off World / Bomb & Body [Anna Mayberry/Allie Blumas] / Zone Support) / The Baby G 2017-03-18 (Saturday) [FB event]

The first Don't Speak event came off nicely in a space that sort of implicitly suggested a quiet listening experience. We'll see if that can be pulled off again in shifting the action to a more traditional bar-type space, but this is, in any event, a worthy lineup. Arrive early to get your auras cleansed by the Zone Support crew!


This week's noteworthy shows:

Jens Lekman (Lisa/Liza) / The Great Hall 2017-03-13 (Monday) [FB event]

Jab Band [Liam Mitro/Luan Phung/Chris Pruden/Matthew Chalmers/Julian Anderson-Bowes — "March Rexidency"] / The Rex Hotel 2017-03-14 (Tuesday – early set @ 6:30! PWYC!) [FB event]

Ornate Ornette Double Quartet -1 [playing Free Jazz] / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2017-03-14 (Tuesday – early!) [FB event]

SUNN O))) (BIG|BRAVE) / Queen Elizabeth Theatre 2017-03-14 (Tuesday) [FB event]

Tilting (Lucky Money) / The Dupe Shop 2017-03-14 (Tuesday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Curly Octopus [Nicole Rampersaud / Stephen Parkinson / Mark Zurawinski] / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2017-03-15 (Wednesday – early!)

Not the Wind, Not the Flag (Wish Tank [Pete Johnston/Liam Cole/Brendan Moratz/Mara Nesrallah/Lieke Van de Voort/Christine Duncan/Bea Labikova/Nick Marshall]) / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2017-03-15 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Burn Down The Capital presents (feat. Retired / Luge / Processor / Cutout Lover) / The Baby G 2017-03-15 (Wednesday) [FB event]

The AMBiENT PiNG (feat. Cult Eyes / URM) / Handlebar 2017-03-15 (Wedesday) [FB event]

Composer's Toolbox (feat. Allison Cameron) ["hybrid lecture / performance on standard and non-standard notation"] / Canadian Music Centre 2017-03-16 (Thursday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Casual Drones 19 (feat. Sandro Perri / Justin Small / Jess Crowe & Bria Salmena / E Adi / Zephyr) / The Baby G 2017-03-16 (Thursday) [FB event]

Bourbon & Jazz series (feat. Tania Gill Quartet) / Monarch Tavern 2017-03-16 (Thursday) [FB event]

Völur (Gates / Pale Mare / Dawn of Tyrants) / Coalition: T.O. 2017-03-17 (Friday) [FB event]

Bill Gilliam/Kayla Milmine/Ambrose Pottie / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2017-03-18 (Saturday – early!) [FB event]

Quintile [featuring Vinko Globokar's "Limites" and world premieres by Patrick Arteaga, James Lowrie, Julia Mermelstein, August Murphy-King and Andrew Noseworthy] (feat. Caution Tape Sound Collective) / Array Space 2017-03-18 (Saturday) [FB event]

Batuki Music Society presents: Concert de musique Gnawa (feat. Les Marocouleurs) / Alliance Française de Toronto 2017-03-18 (Saturday) [FB event]

The Toronto Improvisers Orchestra feat. Christine Duncan and The Element Choir / Array Space 2017-03-19 (Sunday) [FB event]

Somewhere There Presents (feat. Eucalyptus) / The Emmet Ray 2017-03-19 (Sunday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Six Saxes Sing for Spring (feat. Monsoon Trio / Dialectica) / Burdock Music Hall 2017-03-19 (Sunday) [FB event]


Add these to your calendar:

Reminder: This post only contains this week's updates — the full listings can always be found over on the right-hand sidebar!

Paul Linklater and José Contreras / The Cameron House 2017-03-24 (Friday – early set @ 6 p.m.!) [FB event]

The Two Koreas (Not Of) / The Dakota Tavern 2017-03-24 (Friday – early show!) [FB event]

Fire in Heaven: Label Launch (feat. Jay Holy / BABEL / Bodies That Matter / Man Meets Bear / David Jones / YlangYlang) / Array Space 2017-03-25 (Saturday – PWYC! all ages!) [FB event]

The AMBiENT PiNG presents: DRONE:KLUB ["community drone immersion experience"] / Roland Inspiration Centre 2017-03-29 (Wednesday – free! participation encouraged but not required!) [FB event]

Rooted presents: Live Recording (feat. Please Plant This Band [Justin Orok/Ben Heard/Keagan Evans Eskritt] / Wire Circus [Patrick O'Reilly/Edwin Sheard/Derek Gray]) / Harbord and Bathurst-ish 2017-03-31 (Friday) [FB event]

Not Dead Yet presents (feat. Puce Mary / E-Saggila / Brigitte Bardon't / Passion Altar) / Array Space 2017-03-31 (Friday) [FB event]

Feast In The East 61 (feat. Myriam Gendron / Sandro Perri / L CON / Merival) / Matt Durant Studio 2017-04-01 (Saturday – all ages!) [FB event]

Un Blonde (Thomas / Stefana Fratila) / Monarch Tavern 2017-04-06 (Thursday) [FB event]

Ear Candy: Music in Fifths [Philip Glass' "Music in Fifths" will be performed by an exciting ensemble of musicians taken from Toronto’s pop, jazz, and classical community. It will also be paired with a brand new piece collectively composed by the performers in homage to Glass' music"] (Feat. Soundstreams) / Artscape Sandbox 2017-04-08 (Saturday) [more info]

Crosswires (feat. Eiyn Sof / Olivia Featherstone / Liz Hysen) / The Baby G 2017-04-17 (Monday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Tasseomancy (Yamantaka//Sonic Titan / Han Han) / The Garrison 2017-04-19 (Wednesday) [FB event]

You've Changed Records 8th Anniversary Celebration (feat. Daniel Romano / Partner / Richard Laviolette / Shotgun Jimmie / Misha Bower) / Longboat Hall 2017-04-22 (Saturday) [FB event]

Cosmic Soul (feat. SassyBlack / Obuxum / M.I.Blue) / The Music Gallery 2017-04-22 (Saturday) [FB event]

Buzz Records Presents (feat. Weaves / Casper Skulls / Vallens / Twist / PONY) / Lee's Palace 2017-04-22 (Saturday) [FB event]

Beliefs (Weight / TEENANGER / Eyeballs) / The Garrison 2017-04-22 (Saturday) [FB event]

Ronley Teper & The Lipliners / The Dakota Tavern 2017-04-27 (Thursday – early!) [FB event]

Silver Dollar farewell series: Last night at The Dollar (feat. METZ / Fake Palms / New Fries) / The Silver Dollar Room 2017-04-30 (Sunday) [FB event]

Boss Hog (catl.) / Lee's Palace 2017-05-19 (Friday) [more info]

Venetian Snares & Daniel Lanois (Joanne Pollock) / The Great Hall 2017-05-31 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Do Make Say Think / The Danforth Music Hall 2017-06-10 (Friday) [FB event]


Mixcloud corner:

  • The shuffle threw in an extra dose of drone pop in this one, with tracks from Grouper, John Martyn and Spacemen 3 a little island in amongst the Buddhist chants, drift-hum, prog-noodles and piano excursions.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Recording: Peeling

Artist: Peeling

Songs: Away From You* + The Model [Kraftwerk cover]

Recorded at Monarch Tavern (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Girls Rock Camp Toronto All Ages Matinee), February 18, 2016.

Peeling - Away From You

Peeling - The Model

An absurdly-beautiful spring-like afternoon saw the patios filling up along College Street — very unusual Wavelength festival weather. The mood was equally warm inside the Monarch, where this afternoon show was co-presented with Girls Rock Camp Toronto. I was happy to get a chance to catch Peeling close out the afternoon, as I hadn't seen the band since they reformulated and re-emerged last summer from their previous incarnation as Mexican Slang. Currently playing as a five-piece, Dilly Dally's Jimmy Tony Rowlinson is still a foil for singer-guitarist Annabelle Lee, but there are some new faces in the mix, including Alana DeVito (formerly of BB Guns, more recently playing solo as Bobbypin) up front adding some guitar power. The sounds are a little more textured now, the pop hooks less hidden behind the fast-crumbling wall of fuzz that featured with Mexican Slang. There's even room for a bit of groovy swagger, as heard here in a cover of "The Model" that undoubtedly owes at least as much to Big Black's take as its icy original version.

* I do believe this was the title called out before the song, but it's subject to confirmation.

Recording: WLMRT

Artist: WLMRT

Songs: Jumps + Brainfeel

Recorded at Monarch Tavern (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Girls Rock Camp Toronto All Ages Matinee), February 18, 2016.

WLMRT - Jumps

WLMRT - Brainfeel

An absurdly-beautiful spring-like afternoon saw the patios filling up along College Street — very unusual Wavelength festival weather. The mood was equally warm inside the Monarch, where this afternoon show was co-presented with Girls Rock Camp Toronto. This quintet brought some youthful punkrock energy to the afternoon — "punk" in the way the genre is based as much on being bored and watching TV as it is on smashing the state. That manifested in songs about podcasts and skateboarding, delivered with a sly smile, manic energy and synth-fuzz around the edges — WLMRT are the sort of punks whose audience blow bubbles at them. Enormous fun that you can check out through some lo-fi recordings on their bandcamp.

Recording: Strands

Artist: Strands

Song: unknown*

Recorded at Monarch Tavern (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Girls Rock Camp Toronto All Ages Matinee), February 18, 2016.

Strands - unknown

An absurdly-beautiful spring-like afternoon saw the patios filling up along College Street — very unusual Wavelength festival weather. The mood was equally warm inside the Monarch, where this afternoon show was co-presented with Girls Rock Camp Toronto. After the first set, the curtains were drawn, blocking out the daylight to present Rosalie H. Maheux's overhead projection art, a key component of this duo with vocalist Jasmyn Burke (who was between bursts of continuing touring with Weaves). Each song was an integrated audio-visual statement, with the loops and lyrics manifested in the images, and projected Jasmyn clones popping up like backing singers.

* The obvious guess for the title to this one would be "For Certain" — but I'll leave it blank 'til I can confirm that. Please leave a comment if you know the title!

Recording: Denim Roses

Artist: Denim Roses

Song: We Hate Cake

Recorded at Monarch Tavern (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Girls Rock Camp Toronto All Ages Matinee), February 18, 2016.

Denim Roses - We Hate Cake

An absurdly-beautiful spring-like afternoon saw the patios filling up along College Street — very unusual Wavelength festival weather. The mood was equally warm inside the Monarch, where this afternoon show was co-presented with Girls Rock Camp Toronto. This crew of past campers set the tone for the day and were truly an inspiration, both for their "We Can Do It!" moxie as well as their let's-have-fun bonhomie. The highlight of the set was this somewhat controversial take on a favourite dessert.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Recording: DIANA

Artist: DIANA

Songs: Moment of Silence + Slipping Away

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 1), February 17, 2017.

DIANA - Moment of Silence

DIANA - Slipping Away

I hadn't seen this group in action since the release of sophomore album Familiar Touch and their evolution into a seven-piece smooth-groove machine. Insisting on playing with the expanded lineup means that the album's lush arrangements are fully able to breathe on stage, especially with top-notch players like Thom Gill and Ivy Mairi in the fold. But the real star of DIANA 2.0 is vocalist Gary Beals — if Carmen Elle is the pitcher putting in a strong start, Beals is the lights-out closer, sealing the deal with a joyful rush of energy. A triumph of going big and amping things up without losing the attention to detail in the musical textures, this was a pretty glorious set.

Recording: Vallens

Artist: Vallens

Song: Consent

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 1), February 17, 2017.

Vallens - Consent

Though technically in the "down" time working on new material for their second album, Vallens are popping up enough on good local bills to serve as a reminder that they're one of the city's best right now. Cranked up in the Garrison's sound system, there was a nice balance between Robyn Phillips' guitar (sometimes bold and assertive, sometimes drifting dreamily) and Marta Cikojevic's keyb work.

Recording: Chandra

Artist: Chandra

Songs: Tish Le Dire + A Day Without Success

Recorded at The Garrison (Wavelength SEVENTEEN – Night 1), February 17, 2017.

Chandra - Tish Le Dire

Chandra - A Day Without Success

An action-packed leadoff to this year's Wavelength festival, with the first of a couple local all-star ensembles. Drawing from Bile Sister and friends in their orbit, Chandra's backing ensemble now features Julie Reich and Vic Cheong (vox), David Jones (keyb), Penny Clark (guit), Nyles Miszczyk (bass) and Jesse Locke (drums). Even playing first, they had a chance to play to a pretty full room, as the night featured discounted admission to RSVP-ers from an energy drink company (and, apparently, a long line down the block of folks hoping to get in).

With this occasional partnership stretching out over a few years now, the group were a firing on all their new wave cylinders behind Chandra Oppenheim — who herself also looked a bit more relaxed on stage, now and then dancing a little and allowing a faint smile that suggested an understanding between the self of her now and the teenaged one who had originally penned these songs. Besides featuring the songs from the reissued album, the group also tackled the unreleased "A Day Without Success", which is apparently an unreleased demo track from that era.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Recording: Alexander Moskos

Artist: Alexander Moskos

Songs: When You're in a Tight Spot a Toque Will Work as an Oven Mitt + Joyce

Recorded at The Music Gallery (A Night with Pleasence), February 11, 2017.

Alexander Moskos - When You're in a Tight Spot a Toque Will Work as an Oven Mitt

Alexander Moskos - Joyce

The Music Gallery does an excellent job of using its "institutional privilege" to boost the signal of a wide range of local culture-makers. This night saw the stage given over to local label Pleasence, whose output isn't united so much by genre as its striving-oddball aesthetic. Alexander Moskos, best known for his noisy work in AIDS Wolf (and, more recently, in Drainolith) showed off a different side in a rare solo performance in the style of Military Terms, his Pleasence album of piano compositions. Clad in a sequined Expos shirt, his short set of slightly-stoned boogie drift bumped into Sun Ra (whose "Moonship Journey" was covered) as well as Joyce Weiland (the inspiration for the latter piece here).

Recording: ZONES

Artist: ZONES

Song: VOYAGEUR

Recorded at The Music Gallery (A Night with Pleasence), February 11, 2017.

ZONES - VOYAGEUR

The Music Gallery does an excellent job of using its "institutional privilege" to boost the signal of a wide range of local culture-makers. This night saw the stage given over to local label Pleasence, whose output isn't united so much by genre as its striving-oddball aesthetic. Recently returning to performing as a solo act, Derek McKeon's songs might have been missing the back-and-forth vocals that made the band's duo incarnation such a treat, but there was still an immense sense of dub spaciousness and unstable wiggle-wobble in the music, all enhanced by Vanessa Rieger's lively improvised projection art.

Recording: Doom Tickler

Artist: Doom Tickler

Song: unknown*

Recorded at The Music Gallery (A Night with Pleasence), February 11, 2017.

Doom Tickler - unknown

The Music Gallery does an excellent job of using its "institutional privilege" to boost the signal of a wide range of local culture-makers. This night saw the stage given over to local label Pleasence, whose output isn't united so much by genre as its striving-oddball aesthetic. Leslie Predy, whose Spirit Fingers EP is out at the end of the month, lead things off with her monster growl throatscapes, improvising loops of animalistic grunts to driving beats while Randy Gagne's giant papier-mâché heads spun lazily from the roof beams.

[Doom Tickler will be performing at the season's final Long Winter, returning to the Gladstone Hotel on March 24th.]

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

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Recording: Clark/Kenemy/Cole/Fisher

Artist: Dave Clark/Jason Kenemy/Josh Cole/Colin Fisher

Songs: [two excerpts]

Recorded at The Tranzac's Southern Cross Lounge (Music By & For Ken Aldcroft, III), February 8, 2017.

Clark/Kenemy/Cole/Fisher - [excerpt 1]

Clark/Kenemy/Cole/Fisher - [excerpt 2]

This set at the monthly "Music By & For Ken Aldcroft" residency had a last-minute fill in with Jason Kenemy taking on piano duties. Alongside drummer Dave Clark he served as the engine getting the music revved up. Josh Cole (double bass) and Colin Fisher (tenor sax), in contrast, worked more like a brake, preferring to pull the music back towards slower textures. That lead to some inneresting meeting places — here's one quicker and one slower taste of how it all worked out.

[Music By & For Ken Aldcroft returns to The Tranzac tomorrow night (March 8th) with sets by Allison Cameron/William Davison/John Oswald and Emily Denison/Andrew Furlong.]

Recording: Brodie West & Nick Fraser

Artist: Brodie West & Nick Fraser

Song: [1st set, 2nd piece]

Recorded at The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), February 8, 2017.

Brodie West & Nick Fraser - [1st set, 2nd piece]

In his monthly slot, Brodie West presented a duo in place of his quintet, sharing two sets of improvisations with drummer Nick Fraser. Slower meditations with a few louder outbursts, with each player taking plenty chances to pause and explore the scenery of the place they were in.

[Brodie West's slot tomorrow (March 8th) in the early slot will be filled by the Chris Banks Trio (Chris Banks, double bass; Tania Gill, piano, Brodie West, sax).]

Monday, March 6, 2017

Concert Listings Roundup #190

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:

Not The Wind Not The Flag with Rob Clutton (Matias Rozenberg / Magali Meagher) / Burdock Music Hall 2017-03-09 (Thursday) [FB event]

As we've seen in the past with the likes of William Parker and Josh Cole, adding a bassist to Brandon Valdivia and Colin Fisher's cosmic jams gives a different sense of structure to the prceedings. Presumably Rob Clutton will help shape things in his own way in this special encounter. (Also on tap: opening sets from a couple beloved Blocks Recording Club veterans.


This week's noteworthy shows:

Jab Band [Liam Mitro/Luan Phung/Chris Pruden/Matthew Chalmers/Julian Anderson-Bowes — "March Rexidency"] / The Rex Hotel 2017-03-07 (Tuesday – early set @ 6:30! PWYC!) [FB event]

Track Could Bend #24 (feat. Christine Bougie / Someone's Memory / act tbh) / The Steady Café 2017-03-07 (Tuesday – PWYC! new venue!) [FB event]

Most People (No Frills / Hush Pup) / Monarch Tavern 2017-03-07 (Tuesday) [FB event]

Music By & For Ken Aldcroft, IV (feat. Allison Cameron/William Davison/John Oswald / Emily Denison/Andrew Furlong) / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2017-03-08 (Wednesday) [FB event]

The Rainbow Of Forgetting [works by Marjan Mozetich, Linda Catlin Smith, Rudolf Komorous, John Mark Sherlock, Linda Bouchard, Martin Arnold] (feat. The Array Ensemble) / The Music Gallery 2017-03-09 (Thursday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Friends of Markos / Relish Bar & Grill 2017-03-09 (Thursday) [FB event]

Dinosaur Jr. / The Danforth Music Hall 2017-03-10 (Friday) [FB event]

SlowPitchSound [THK SKN release party] / Burdock Music Hall 2017-03-10 (Friday) [FB event]

The Seams [album release!] (Ice Cream / Kiwi Jr) / Monarch Tavern 2017-03-10 (Friday) [FB event]

Silver Dollar farewell series (feat. Bloodshot Bill / catl / Pink Acid Wash) / The Silver Dollar Room 2017-03-10 (Friday) [FB event]

JLK & The Assassins [ex-Moss Lime] (Nyssa / Komodo / Sigil [membs. FRIGS + HSY]) / The Baby G 2017-03-10 (Friday) [FB event]

Ugly Beauties [Strange Attractors album launch!] / Jazz Bistro 2017-03-11 (Saturday) [FB event]

Many Visions: Plumes Deconstructs the Music of Grimes (feat. Plumes / David Jones) / The Music Gallery 2017-03-11 (Saturday) [FB event]

The Luyas [Human Voicing release party!] (Germaphobes) / Smiling Buddha 2017-03-11 (Saturday) [FB event]

Audiopollination #52.2 (feat. Andrew Kay/Max Donaldson/David Shelly / Diane Roblin/Thomas Hainbuch/Harrison Vetro / Brian Abbott/Karen Ng/Zach Clark / Vladimir Luchansky/Rick Sacks/Glen Hall/Branko Dzinovic) / Array Space 2017-03-11 (Saturday) [FB event]

Polka Dogs / Relish Bar & Grill 2017-03-11 (Saturday) [FB event]

Tone Deaf Culture presents: T.O. NOISE #5 (feat. Samesex / Marion / Excrement Binge / Corrodesion) / Belljar Café 2017-03-11 (Saturday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Burger Revolution V T.O. (feat. Paul Jacobs / The Knees Up / The Sulks / Seance Sisters) / The Silver Dollar Room 2017-03-11 (Saturday) [FB event]

The Sadies [Northern Passages album release – two sets!] / The Royal Cinema 2017-03-11 (Saturday) [FB event]

Orchard Mist [Tom Richards/Karen Ng/Scott Peterson/Brandon Valdivia] / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2017-03-11 (Saturday) [FB event]

Somewhere There's Second Sunday Series (feat. Adolescence [Harrison Argatoff/Emily Denison/Meghan Gilhespy/Dan Pitt/Jacob Thompson/Harry Vetro] / Array Space 2017-05-12 (Sunday)


Add these to your calendar:

Reminder: This post only contains this week's updates — the full listings can always be found over on the right-hand sidebar!

Jab Band [Liam Mitro/Luan Phung/Chris Pruden/Matthew Chalmers/Julian Anderson-Bowes — "March Rexidency"] / The Rex Hotel 2017-03-14 (Tuesday – early set @ 6:30! PWYC!) [FB event]

Tilting (Lucky Money) / The Dupe Shop 2017-03-14 (Tuesday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Composer's Toolbox (feat. Allison Cameron) ["hybrid lecture / performance on standard and non-standard notation"] / Canadian Music Centre 2017-03-16 (Thursday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Bourbon & Jazz series (feat. Tania Gill Quartet) / Monarch Tavern 2017-03-16 (Thursday) [FB event]

Bill Gilliam/Kayla Milmine/Ambrose Pottie / The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge) 2017-03-18 (Saturday – early!) [FB event]

Jab Band [Liam Mitro/Luan Phung/Chris Pruden/Matthew Chalmers/Julian Anderson-Bowes — "March Rexidency"] / The Rex Hotel 2017-03-21 (Tuesday – early set @ 6:30! PWYC!) [FB event]

Billy Moon (Fresh Snow / CO/NTRY / WHOOP-Szo) / The Horseshoe Tavern 2017-03-22 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Ashkenaz Festival, Small World Music & Batuki Music present (feat. AvevA Dese) / Lula Lounge 2017-03-23 (Thursday) [FB event]

Long Winter 5.4 (feat. Deliluh / Leanne Simpson / Protruders / Doom Tickler / Bonnie Trash / Bunny / HEX / Midge / Clamaglamza / Joel Eel / Sistem) / Gladstone Hotel 2017-03-24 (Friday – all ages! PWYC!) [FB event]

Corrodesion presents: Audio Bleed (feat. Inchoate / Hybrid Frequency / Johan Seaton / Panic Engines) / Belljar Café 2017-03-24 (Friday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Faster Presents: Spring Sounds (feat. Heraclitus Akimbo / Faster / Deenzi) / Gerrard Art Space 2017-03-25 (Saturday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Kristian North Group (Fountain / Man Made Hill / Greydini) / The Baby G 2017-03-25 (Saturday) [FB event]

Toronto Creative Music Lab Fundraiser Launch Party (feat. Patchwork / Stereoscope) / Array Space 2017-03-26 (Sunday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Opus:Testing: Period Piece (feat. Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra) / Canadian Music Centre 2017-03-26 (Sunday – free with RSVP!) [FB event]

Jab Band [Liam Mitro/Luan Phung/Chris Pruden/Matthew Chalmers/Julian Anderson-Bowes — "March Rexidency"] / The Rex Hotel 2017-03-28 (Tuesday – early set @ 6:30! PWYC!) [FB event]

Corey Gulkin (Omhouse / Merganzer) / Monarch Tavern 2017-03-30 (Thursday) [FB event]

Decorum (YI / The Whisper Game) / Smiling Buddha 2017-04-05 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Emergents III (feat. Castle If / Laura Swankey) / The Music Gallery 2017-04-07 (Friday) [FB event]

You'll Never Get to Heaven (ZONES / SWANES) / The Baby G 2017-04-07 (Friday) [FB event]

Summer Isle Presents: Providence Basement Electroniques (feat. Timeghost / Craow / Death Kneel / E-Saggila / Burglar) / Smiling Buddha (basement) 2017-04-16 (Sunday) [FB event]

Crosswires (feat. Kelvin Wetherell / Brian Abbott / Catholic Wilt) / The Baby G 2017-04-24 (Monday – PWYC!) [FB event]

Wavelength 728 (feat. Del Bel / Saxsyndrum) / The Great Hall (Longboat Hall) 2017-04-29 (Saturday) [FB event]

Laser Background (Norwegian Arms / Champion Ski) / The Baby G 2017-05-03 (Wednesday) [FB event]

Brokeback (Fresh Snow) / The Garrison 2017-05-05 (Friday) [FB event]

The Art of the Piano (feat. Ali Berkok) / Gallery 345 2017-05-11 (Thursday) [FB event]

Invocation Residency Series (feat. Sir Richard Bishop / Robert Millis / The Glass Orchestra) / Array Space 2017-05-20 (Saturday – all ages!) [FB event]


Mixcloud corner:

  • Here's this week's Drone Brunch mix! Tunes from Lubomyr Melnyk, Kronos Quartet, The Deeep, BABEL, Brian Eno, Ravi Shankar and more!

Bandcamp corner:

  • Some further feminist free-jazz explorations from Elisa Thorn, Jessica Ackerley and Laura Swankey — and another ace release from Hamilton's HAVN collective.