Two innovative TO music icons are collaborating to release a pretty rad document of the Canadian indie scene. Selections from the music series “Live at Massey Hall” will be complied and released on Arts and Crafts Records. Volume One includes Destroyer “Foam Hands”, Constantines “Nighttime/Anytime (It’s Alright)”, Hayden “Almost Everything”, Dan Mangan + Blacksmith “Vessel”, Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton “Fatal Gift”, Andy Shauf “The Magician”, Cœur de pirate “Place de la République”, Bahamas “Like A Wind”, Japandroids “The House That Heaven Built” and Whitehorse “Die Alone.” Liner notes are supplied by Michael Barclay, author of the the Hip bio, “The Never-ending Present.” The Live at Massey Hall was a series of concerts by Canada’s best indie musicians which were filmed and then presented as short films on YouTube. Tickets were 18.94 in homage to the year the Grand Old Lady opened. She has closed up shop for a touch-up but these album (plus more I’m guessing) should hold you through.
Peterborough player Nick Ferrio’s new album, “Have A Nice Day” has a song on it called “Quit The Band.” Is it a reply to Sappyfest alumni Shotgun Jimmie’s “ Join The Band” - is this a feud!!!
Not so fast Hombre. . .
"Quit the Band is a story song all about how everyone should join a band.” (Nick says in a press release) “The first verse tells the story of the first band I played in, and how amazing it felt to start a band with friends. The second verse is about a turbulent tour I did in Europe, where we were robbed and had our window smashed out of our van, but we kept on, because the show must go on! It was a wild experience, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world! So everyone: start a band!"
Two of the best sources for thoughtful modern music, publicist Killbeat Music and DJ, VJ and PJ Laurie Brown collaborated on a podcast earlier this year and they have done so again. Ponderbeat 2 includes Begonia, Folly and the Hunter, Great Lake Swimmers, Dan Mangan, Rae Spoon and others including a cover of the Cranberries, “Dreams’ by Liza Anne.
Those sons of the Hammer have a new album, Rally Cry, forged and ready. Singles are being issued, “People’s Champ”, “Relentless” and now “Only for a Moment.” There’s movement in the camp, they are as the Hawk says, heading for the Big Time, Its right around the corner.
"There’s a line in our tune “Come To Light”, 'The underpass would keep us from harm.' It’s that moment when you’re driving through a rain storm, and you have a second of respite from the chaos outside. I find myself writing and thinking about those moments of calm, and how important they can be. “Only For A Moment” is an extension of that idea. My friend’s mom was struggling with some oppressive mental health issues. It was tough for everyone in her family. But there was a moment we were out one night, where my friend seemed to leave the trouble behind - just for an hour - and could just enjoy her life. The stress in her face seemed to disappear. And I was happy she could have that." - Max Kerman
Also the Ham fam have released the video for “Relentless”
Between the notes I see long easy Fall nights in a blue house on King St. There a crew of string players scratched and strummed their way into my heart and gave me hope for a city. A hope long gone but it never did need my hope nor help anyway. But I know the crew of red shoes are still there, scattered but still singing, still playing and in those notes they find again that velvet comradery. Leave me in the dark dark dark. and wake me up when September ends.
Slowcity.ca pal, Nick Ferrio, has released a video for his single, “How Will I Know”. All of us involved in the arts wonder whether what we make is of any relevance - but then we say fack it and keep on keeping on.
In a press release Nick says:
‘“How Will I Know” is a philosophical song; it’s about my relationship with music and thinking about why I’m drawn to make it, especially in today’s day and age, with the music industry changing. We’ve all heard over and over again about how the music industry is in the pits and how culturally music isn’t as valuable as it once was. I guess the nagging question in this song is, is music still worth something? The answer to that is yes. Music has the power to transform, to give meaning, to create connection, to make change. Ultimately, music is powerful. And because of that, music will survive whatever happens to the music industry.’
Riff ready Shwa-rockers continue to their diesel-powered rock with the new track, “Black Hill Creek”. The duo are all fired up on this - its what we called back in the day, a head-banger.
Congrats to Meghan Patrick on her award at the Canadian Country Music Association Awards held Sep 9 in Hamilton, ON. That’s two in a row for Patrick who also won the 2017 Female Artists of the Year. She was nominated for five, the FORD Album of the Year, Female Artist of the Year, Single of the Year, Video of the Year and Songwriter(s) of the Year Awards.
Patrick performed her new single, “Walls Come Down” at the award show which was hosted by global Country star, Shania Twain. Canadian Country legend, Terri Clarke, was inducted into the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame and Patrick took part in a tribute performance along with Suzy Bogguss and Jessica Mitchell as well as Terri Clark herself.
Shwarock City two piece Crown Lands are going from strength to strength. Kevin Comeau and Cody Bowles are heading east from VanCity with Protest The Hero and Coheed and Cambria through Canada and then heading through the States with Primus. Just before all of this kicked off I had a chance to hang out with the Crown Lands as part of a TV show on the arts in Oshawa. Its called Renaissance Man and was produced by Empty Cup Media. It is now available on Bell Media Fibe TV1. Curiously one of the bands discussed was Protest The Hero.
Last I recall of K-Os was he was digging views from the stix but he's back to the city, the T Dot, for his new video - leaving his sweet woodsy hideaway and moving on in to Toronto. What he is back for, I'm not sure, but he's an interesting kat so always up to give a buck or two to hear him jam out. He has a new track "No Bucks", from an upcoming EP. Tune in.
“There's this common idea that to be a rapper you have to be from the city, and that to be perceived as ‘hard’ you need to create some kind of street identity,” comments k-os (in a press release). “However, it may take a harder nerve and resolve to spend a few nights in nature under the stars alone. This music video investigates the idea that to get to know your city streets better you might have to leave them behind. Not for another city, but for a road less travelled. I never really focused too much on what everyone in my city was doing. Not because I didn't enjoy their work, but because a lot of us Canadians are trained to imitate American sensibilities. I was never good at that. The concept of trying to be an original artist that doesn't chase cash is obviously not something I invented. I just spend a lot of time in nature, and as far as the eye can see…money doesn't grow on trees.”
One thing about Shwarock City artists, only the most determined survive. Oshawa is such a deadzone for culture, creative folks either give up completely or stubbornly persevere and carve out their own path. My pal J. is walking her own path, one with a beauty soulful soundtrack. This is our Jenny from our block and this sister is doing it for herself. R.E.S.P.E.C.T. The track is from her forthcoming album, Glimpses of Indigo.
Ask Dany Laj and the Looks - I'm a sucker for 70s era pub rock Nick Lowe Costello - bit Small Faces/ Faces, bit of denim bellbottoms, lotta pints and no future but what you make - love it and love this from Fucked Up - so so good. . . settle in and dig the evolution of this revolutionary band.
The rockabilly can be grease and Eddie Cochran but it can be letter jackets and varsity frat a la Happy Days too I guess as TO's bro-billies, The Dreamboats, make out. They cruise into the Legendary Horseshoe Sept 8 2018. Get ready to swing.