Sunday, July 31, 2011

Botany - Feeling Today (Hype 074)

Interesting glorious shimmering cut and paste track taken from their Feeling Today EP out on Western Vinyl soon.


Beats Rhymes & Life - the film on ATCQ

Took in this documentary on 90s hip hop pioneers A Tribe Called Quest with DJ IKvsDK on a balmy sunday afternoon at Dundas Square. The film is the first by Michael Rapaport and succeeds in providing a perspective on this key member of the Native Tongues hip hop movements.

The doc is organized chronological, starting with a few childhood remembrances of Q-Tip and Phife Dawg and progressing through to high school where they meet the Jungle Brothers and get their first big contact in DJ Red Alert.

The group gains some profile with Bonita Applebaum but it's the release of their second album, Low End Theory, (with tracks like Buggin' Out) that blows up.

The follow up Midnight Marauders (with tracks like Electric Relaxation) was also well-received but the next two releases are less so and the band dissolved after the fifth album.

The doc does a decent job of balancing the perspectives of the two central figures Phife and Q-Tip. Pacing is very consistent. The visuals start with some interesting animation effects but this is replaced midway with a barrage of interview clips.

There was a good mix of contemporaries (Prince Paul, De La Soul, Beastie Boys, Busta Rhymes, etc.) as well as next generation (Pharrell Williams, Common, The Roots, etc.) giving their perspective. There are hints that more material is available and hopefully the full director's cut will make this available. Good job!

Memorable segments:

Q-Tip with the Lonnie Smith album
Jarobi on Phife Dawg
Phife Dawg and Wife
Candid talk from De La Soul after the 2008 Ring the Bells tour
Pharrell Williams with his unabashed respect for ATCQ

Foxes in Fiction Out Of The Box Toronto Underground Theatre July 31, 2011

Took in day two of the three day Out Of The Box music festival here in Toronto courtesy of fellow blogger Indie Machine. This festival is definately just out of the box. I only heard about this very recently and I'm guessing that's potentially why the event was slightly dead. Maybe 30-40 people were around during the opening three bands slot of 9 PM to 12 PM (friends of the bands). Unfortunately, at midnight I was done and missed the last two bands. I also picked up some free old skool 3d glasses to watch the 3d shows they had on in the background including an excerpt from Dawn of the Dead. Here is who was playing

Foxes in Fiction
Human Bodies
Trap Tiger
Heartbeat Hotel

Foxes in Fiction was definately my fav and he only played for about 15 people at 9 PM and went through about 5 of his ambient chillout type tracks.

Here is what people said (or in this case, the only other person taking in the shows):

@IKvsDK Out of the box.chilling to foxes in fiction #undergroundtheatre #toronto

@AdhamGhanem Great 2 sets there from @foxesinfiction. Human Bodies up now at @TO_Underground for Out of the Box. #3D

@IKvsDK Out of the box early. Foxes in fiction epic. Thanks to indie machine for the hook up

@AdhamGhanem Btw, there's popcorn and beer here at @TO_Underground along with live bands and #3D films for Out of the Box fest. (IKDK: I don't know if this was really selling it)

@AdhamGhanem What a great set from Human Bodies. Trap Tiger rocking out now at @TO_Underground for Out of the Box fest. #3D @heartbeathotel next.

@AdhamGhanem @heartbeathotel using not 1, not 2, not even 3, but 4 guitar amps for their set! Right now at @TO_Underground for Out of the Box fest. #3D

@AdhamGhanem Here we go, @papermaps close out a great night 2 of Out of the Box fest at @TO_Underground. Come down before its too late. #3D

Foxes In Fiction - Bathurst


Saturday, July 30, 2011

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Wolf Gang - The King And All Of His Men (Hype 070)

Another jangily epic pop from Wolf Gang taken from Suego Faults. Why does this remind me of Florence and MGMT. Good track though which follows up the brilliant Lions in Cages.


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Monday, July 25, 2011

Southern Shores - Night is Young (Hype 068)

Essential cool cut and paste indie track from Southern Shores that brilliantly samples an old nineties Cathy Dennis dance track All Night Long. Nice!!


Friday, July 22, 2011

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Devon Williams - Your Sympathy (Hype 062)

Melodic jangily indie cut taken from the to be released Euphoria off Slumberland Records.


Cibo Matto - Lee's Palace, Toronto, July 16th

Met up with IKvsDK and PanicManual to take in Cibo Matto. It's been a while since the dynamic New York Japanese duo passed through but still some diehards showed up to take it all in.

We arrived to catch the last two songs from the openers, Tony Castles, who seemed to have started and finished earlier than the time posted on the palace site. A foursome not much into pedals. One of the guys switched from keyboards in one song to guitar in the next. I experienced some AV disconnect as the guitarist on the right was madly strumming but I still couldn't hear him. This was the END of the set mind you - anticipated a rough night for the techies.

Long wait for Cibo Matto - time enough to scout the crowd. Not full at all. IKvsDK said it was twice as full when he was here in 1996. I wasn't sure if that was just Old Man memory (e.g. in my day, the snow fell twice as high) but the crowd did seem sparse - and aged. Hipster count: 0. One dude was wearing a Celtic Nakamura jersey. No one seems to wear J league jerseys :(.

Slightly late, Cibo Matto takes the stage. Miho on the Mic and Yuka on the keyboards. We push up to the dance floor and the ladies launch into Beef Jerky. Yuka signals "volume up" to the tech and he half-asses it. Scotty in the Engine Room he is not.

I'm at the back of the dance floor dancing with the same intensity as the tech working the board. Scotty in the Engine Room I am not. There's two young ladies about 5 feet in front of me who clearly remember the band from the 90s. They are into it and dancing it up. IKvsDK and PanicManual have drifted to the right scoping for better vantage points.

Third song is Sugar Water and IKvsDK is elated. The crowd recognizes it and enjoys the soother.

A little later, Miho stops to rap a bit with the audience. They are stuck out near the airport where restaurants are legally required to charge double. $17 Pad thai - crazy food!! IKvsDK hollers a question "Was the food any good?" Ha ha - it was $17.

The band gets back into it. They try out BBQ (?) and the bassist and drummer join the ladies on stage. My favourite track of the night.

Meanwhile PanicManual has scored a great unobstructed view just to the left of the stage. The two young ladies have somehow backed up into me leaving about five feet of space in front of them. IKvsDK snags the spot and I shuffle over.

Cibo Matto tried out a few new songs during the evening. A bit slower with more singing (instead of the old school rapping) and electronic percussion from Miho who wields a mean drumstick. Kind of like a Moon Child with cowbell. The title of one song was about a girl so perhaps the food motif has run its course.

The band ends the set with Birthday Cake. Crowd is into it. Two guys in front of me shout the lyrics to each other. The chorus has everybody jumping up and down. That is those who aren't old and decrepit and holding a drink like yours truly.

Quick off stage and back on for the Encore Know your Chicken. Miho and Yuka hustle off the stage at the end of the set to sign merch. They work hard. Much luck to them on their tour.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Twin Sister-Bad Street (Hype 061)

Interesting track that has alittle bit of a Tom Tom Club feel to it. They play the El Mocambo in Toronto tomorrow night, July 19th, 2011


Sunday, July 17, 2011

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Duck Sauce - Big Bad Wolf (Hype 059)

Killer new house track by Armand Van Helden under his Duck Sauce moniker. Saturday Night, feelin alright.


Friday, July 15, 2011

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - The Body (Hype 058)

Brand new single from IKDK favs POBPAH. They are in Toronto on August 2, 2011 for a show at the Opera House with equally as hyped Craft Spells.


Thursday, July 14, 2011

Ricky Eat Acid - Balloons (Hype 057)

Low-fi Chill out affair from Ricky Eat Acid. Ricky's Biography from Last FM: sometimes at night i think about all the sunglasses i’ll never get to wear.

In honor of Ricky of Panicmanual fame. We will miss you!


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Washed Out - Amor Fati (Hype 055)

New cut and paste waterlogged indie cut from Washed Out's new album Within Or Without.


The Album Shortlist - July

The Album Shortlist - July (Although not that short)

54-40 - Lost In The City
Bass Clef - Rollercoasters Of The Heart / So Cruel 12 Inch
Bell - Diamonite
Blouse - Shadow 7 Inch
Burning Hearts - Into The Wilderness EP
Bvdub - Songs For A Friend I Left Behind
Cults - Cults
David Kilgour And The Heavy Eights - Left By Soft
Hoop Dreams -
Kaiser Chiefs - The Future Is Medieval
Kyte - Remix Works
Peter Murphy (Bauhaus) - Ninth
Pictureplane - Thee Physical
Pulseprogramming – Charade Is Gold
Ronettes - Be My Baby - The Very Best of the Ronettes
Soft Metals - Soft Metals
Sons And Daughters - Mirror Mirror
Spoons Static In Transmission
Stars - The Bedroom Demos
Still Corners - Cuckoo 7 Inch
Teams - Teams Versus Star Slinger EP
Thievery Corporation - Culture Of Fear
Throwing Muses - The Season Seasons - Summer
View - Cutting Corners EP
Washed Out - Within and Without

Monday, July 11, 2011

Gang Gang Dance Horseshoe Tavern Toronto July 10, 2011 4AD

Hot night with a very air conditioned Horseshoe for once. Turntabalists NGUZUNGUZU and TOTAL FREEDOM opened the night with some tribal jungle reggae cut and paste dub. Have to admit I was only partially feeling it which may have been due to it being a Sunday night. Gang Gang Dance took to the stage without a change and a seamless blend from the openers set into their booming sound system. Lead singer at one point was adventurous and headed out to dance with/explore the crowd during a long instrumental segment. The band is currently touring their latest album Eye Contact on the 4AD imprint. Definately a wild energetic concert. Here is what the crowd said:

@iKvsDK: Why does the horseshoe feel like a freezer? #4AD Gang Gang Dance (IKDK: It got warm quick once Gang Gang Dance hit)

@itsbigmitch: This is gonna be a big one, at Gang Gang Dance with @Dustin_Costain and @JimnTonic waiting on @PhilthySpicoli and @Partybumbler

@seanmackay13: Gang Gang Dance at the horseshoe, going to be sweaty but amazing

@henryfaber: The scene on a hot and humid Toronto Sunday night? Bangin at The Horseshoe Tavern anticipating Gang Gang Dance's arrival.

@IKvsDK: Okay I've had enough of the openers. Bring on gang gang dance #horseshoe #4AD (IKDK: Okay I was alittle impatient last night)

@DiamondAtlas: Gang gang dance show is really fun

@PrinceNifty: There is yet another festival this weekend in Toronto. Bro-fest w headliners gang gang dance (IKDK: maybe a commentary that most of the people at this concert were guys? Which was true)

@IKvsDK: Gang gang dance is just one neverending extended song #4AD #horseshoe (IKDK:True, no breaks between songs)

@itsbigmitch: "Hi, I'm a dumbfuck who didn't go see Gang Gang Dance" -not me

@brightcorners: Whoa whoa! Three girls just took their shirts off at the gang gang dance show! Maje fun! (IKDK: hmmmm it was hot)

@IKvsDK: Gang gang dance just ripped the roof off the horseshoe literally. Dancefloor mayhem #4AD

@IKvsDK: Shades of rhythm cover? Gang gang dance #horseshoe #4AD

@_anupa: eardrums are blown after that so sick gang gang dance show.

@sam_chater: white shirts at gang gang dance turned into an involuntary wet top comp

@tylerball: After seeing Gang Gang Dance tonight I understand religion.

@PorkyStClair: Gang Gang Dance... What a show. Lizzi Bougatsos and crew killed it. All for a measly $10. And people pay hundreds to see Lady Gaga? Pfff.


Blood Orange - Sutphin Boulevard (Hype 054)

Funky soulful indie track from Blood Orange


Sunday, July 10, 2011

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Upcoming Concerts as of July 9, 2011

10 July Gang Gang Dance (Horseshoe Tavern)
14 July Cold Cave / Cult Of Youth (Horseshoe Tavern)
16 July Cibo Matto / Tony Castles (Lee's Palace)
17 July Gomez (Phoenix Concert Theatre)
19 July Soft Moon (Wrong Bar)
22 July Disappears (Sneaky Dees)
22 July Grimes (Garrison)
23 July Ema (Garrison)
02 August The Pains of Being Pure at Heart / Craft Spells (Opera House)
09 August Doughboys (Air Canada Centre)
02 Sept Peter Bjorn And John Show 1 (Lee's Palace)
03 Sept Peter Bjorn And John Show 2 (Lee's Palace)
11 Sept Erasure (Sound Academy)
24 Sept Peter Hook / Dirty Beaches / Frankie Rose & The Outs (Phoenix Concert Theatre)
27 Sept Horrors (Lee's Palace)
29 Sept Wild Beasts (Mod Club)
30 Sept James Blake (Phoenix Concert Theatre)
01 Oct Foster The People (Sound Academy)
03 Oct Twin Shadow (Mod Club)
14 Oct Braids (Horseshoe)
16 Oct Dum Dum Girls / Crocodiles (Lee's Palace)
23 Oct Friendly Fires (Phoenix Concert Theatre)

Shindu - Happy House (Hype 052)

Saturday Night Dancing. Happy House. Siouxsie Cover? Yes. Risky? Yes. Success? Yes. Funked up club track giving the Banshees classic some steel drum action. On Kitsune out of France.


Thursday, July 7, 2011

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Vetiver - Wonder Why (Hype 046)

Nice alt-country indie track from Subpop outfit Vetiver taken from their Subpop release The Errant Charm


Coheed & Cambria / Soundgarden at the Molson Amphitheatre, July 2nd 2011

The Spin caption pretty much says it all. It's been ages since Soundgarden split (1997) and now, with the absense of any new creative outlets, the boys appear to be looking for a steady gig. No worries, this fan obliges nostalgia.

The last time I saw them was 1996 at Varsity Stadium. They were on their "Down on the Upside" album tour. (The openers were Rocket from the Crypt.) This go-round is at the Molson Amphitheatre. A nice bonus are the openers progressive outfit Coheed & Cambria who passed through Toronto a few months ago.

Got there on time. Decent crowd filing in; the grass section seems to have more people than the lower sections. A mix of older and not so old in the crowd.

The show started promptly at 7:30pm with Claudio Sanchez et. al. taking the stage. Claudio, working a white Dean, is a mass of frizzy hair. C&C blow through the first two songs in rapid succession before the crowd starts to loosen up and respond. Still alot of people getting their drink on (at $10 a pop) and trying to scoop better seats.

The acoustics are decent; the top end is clean but swimmy. The lead guitarist can really tear and the levels from the drummer and bass are distinct and separate. (Good Job tech people).

C&C blow through another track keeping up the rapid pace. The equipment changes between tracks is F1 pit crew calibre. Claudio gets a dark wood grain Dean before launching into another track. (Sorry still working on a C&C setlist).

More people file in and the lower sections start to fill out. Alot of concert shirts out there. I spot some older heads rocking Bob Seger tour shirts but alot of 2011 Soundgarden and Badmotorfinger shirts. Saw one guy with a Soundgarden/NIN tour shirt from Molson Park, Barrie 1991.

Last track. Claudio puts his hair in a ponytail and brings out the double neck for Welcome Home. Great prog track. The crowd recognizes the tune and gets into it a little. Claudio plays the outro behind his head.

Whole set took about 45 minutes. Got to say C&C really brought it but the audience here is mostly oblivious. They deserved a much better more attentive less distracted audience. Still the show went on and they carried themselves very professionally. A+ for the band. D- for the audience.

Intermission and a few inane movie trailers fill the screens. A colder wind starts to blow through the place.

I overheard some dude saying he likes Audioslave more than Soundgarden. Recall Homer Simpson likes Wings more than the Beatles. Kids.

By this time everyone is seated. Night falls and the sound check starts around 8:30pm.

And Soundgarden hit the stage a few minutes later. Chris Cornell, Ben Sheppard, Kim Thayil and Matt Cameron. Chris and Matt have stayed musically (and professionally) active. I have no idea what Ben and Kim have done. There's always a kind of reckoning with a reunion and the onus was on Ben and Kim to bring it.

The set starts with Black Rain and it's pretty clear that Kim's guitar levels are too low. Chris has got the hair like the Jesus Christ Pose video. Ben has filled out a little but still has this wild-ass on-stage bass moves. Matt is, of course, amazing.

A small note on guitarists and that divide between studio work and live recordings. Some guitarists choose to trot out the same licks used in the studio in their live recordings. Thayil doesn't. I remember this from the last concert where alot of licks turned out differently. It's a risk - some tracks don't lend themselves to ad libs and improv.

Next track is Searching with My Good Eye Closed - "Do you hear a cow?" "A rooster says" "Here is a pig". Still can't hear Kim. Fortunately, by Spoonman they had fixed the levels.

The crowd is into it. I'm into it now that I can hear everything. Back to 1994. After Gun, Chris acknowledges the crowd. Points out a guy in the front that mouthed "I love you" to Chris - Ha ha, happy pride week dude.

The crew lowers the stage lights and points them into the crowd for "Blow up the Outside World". Shades of the video (an homage to A Clockwork Orange).

After this track, I notice about four cameras at the front cutting between shots on stage and the audience with B&W palette. Nice work on the two screens above the stage.

A few more tracks and then a brief break. I caught this huge nose of weed which foreshadowed the start of Outshined. Recall Floyd from True Romance.

The next track was the only one from UltraMega OK but is arguably one that sets Chris Cornell apart from most other singers of his era. It's a screaming track which showcases Cornell's "full head" sound while employing some resonance/echo kind of effects; great for this kind of venue. I was enraptured - this was the highlight track for me.

Alot of whooping and hollering from the audience after this one - they know what it's about. Chris raps a bit with the audience mentioning his son who is just off stage glued to Matt Cameron's drumming. Nice!

The next track is Fell on Black Days and the rain starts to fall as if on cue. It's festive out there and a few yellow-jacketed security guards scramble up top in response to an idiot.

A few more tracks and we are into Black Hole Sun with Matt doing the backing vocals. Kim's guitar is subdued once more. It seems some of his pedals are audible and others aren't; very annoying.

The next track gets a little context from Chris as we head into 4th of July. The crowd loves it. Great line: Light a Roman Candle and Hold it in your Hand.

A few more tracks and a brief break before Soundgarden are on stage for the encore. It's Slaves and Bulldozers. Fortunately, the guitar setup is audible and Kim shows up. Best guitar work done in the show. He's still got it.

Soundgarden Setlist

Black Rain (Telephantasm)
Searching With My Good Eye Closed (Badmotorfinger)
Spoonman (Superunknown)
Gun (Louder than Love)
Rusty Cage (Badmotorfinger)
Blow Up The Outside World (Down on the Upside)
Let Me Drown (Superunknown)
Jesus Christ Pose (Badmotorfinger)
My Wave (Superunknown)
Day I Tried To Live (Superunknown)
Outshined (Badmotorfinger)
Beyond The Wheel (Ultramega O.K.)
Fell On Black Days (Superunknown)
Ugly Truth (Louder than Love)
Burden In My Hand (Down on the Upside)
Superunknown (Superunknown)
Black Hole Sun (Superunknown)
4th Of July (Superunknown)
Face Pollution (Badmotorfinger)
Like Suicide (Superunknown)
Slaves And Bulldozers (Badmotorfinger)

Best Songs: Beyond the Wheel, Slaves and Bulldozers
Best Concert Shirt: Kyuss Lives
Songs I would have liked to hear: Limo Wreck, Hands All Over

Friday, July 1, 2011

Spoons - Escape (Hype 044) Canada Day

New track by the Spoons taken from their new album, yes new album, called Static in Transmission. Vocals are done by Sandy Horne and this track sounds alot better than their lead off single You Light Up which sounds like a very bad nineties rock n roll goth synth tune. Happy Canada Day!!!