Friday, February 29, 2008

no shame!!

I was feeling much better Thursday morning, and by the evening had decided that no matter what, I would definitely go to the Drake for No Shame. It's been too long since I went out, and last night's lineup was just too good to miss: Leif Vollebekk, boats!!, Amos the Transparent, and Two-Minute Miracles. A few friends of mine would be there, too.

After a longer-than-usual trek out to the Drake---the Queen St. fire meant the streetcar took a detour---I arrived in time to catch most of Leif Vollebekk's set. And, wow! That man is quite something. As is true of other artists who perform solo, his recorded tunes don't do justice to the near-spiritual experience that the live set was. I might be exaggerating a bit, but not much. He didn't have extra CDs with him, so I'll have to get one when his album comes out in May.

Next up was Winnipeg's boats!!, who are on a country-wide tour. I missed them when they played at the Boat last Thursday, so was keen to see them last night. Before they came on, I started chatting with a guy sitting near me. Turns out he's finishing up a PhD at York, and did archival research at the Hudson's Bay archives! We talked about history until the music started. The band was quite fun. I can imagine they have had some pretty lively shows in the past. I'd be happy to see them again, hopefully on a night when I'm feeling better and there's more of a crowd out. They are playing Sneaks on Sunday, as part of Wavelength with The Weather Station and Muscox. Now there's another reason to go to that show!

The third act of the night, and the one that drew me out, was Amos the Transparent. I like this band a lot. Their album is great, and I'll see them again in a month, when they open for Basia Bulat at Lee's Palace. Although they were really tired from driving and playing shows for the past few days, they played like they weren't. I'm looking forward to seeing them when they're well rested and don't have a long drive back home hanging over their heads. The crowd had filled up a bit more by their set, but it was still thin. It's too bad, really, 'cause it was warm at the Drake and the music thus far had been great.

In between sets, I made a new friend and generally had a fun time. (None of my friends came out to the show.) I brought a package of Lindt chocolates with me, and did my best to hand them out to everyone there. My cold was beginning to catch up with me by the time Two-Minute Miracles came on. I stayed for most of their set---and thought they were really good---but then I just had to leave. I got home just as my medicine was wearing off.

What a great show!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

A week later, still sick.

I felt better during the day, enough so that I cleaned more of the apartment and managed to get a little bit done on my dissertation. More importantly, though, I introduced CS to I Can Has Cheezburger and the NFB animation website.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Indie Music 24.

Welcome to my weekly roundup of inexpensive indie(ish) musical happenings in downtown Toronto. I try to list as many shows here as I know about, though with a preference for listing those happening at venues I especially like, or featuring performers I know something about. This list is thus not comprehensive. In addition, I rarely list shows that cost $10 or more, and never ones that require advance ticket purchases. If I'm missing something or you have any comments, please do let me know.

I didn't make it out to any shows last week. I was sick, sick, sick. But hopefully I'll be better soon---prescription drugs make me happy!---and up for some of the great shows on offer over the next few days. I'll be at the Drake on Thursday and Saturday, and either Rancho Relaxo or Sneaky Dee's on Friday. Maybe Sneaky Dee's again on Sunday. Let me know if you wanna come along.

MONDAY (25 feb)

Shoeless Mondays presents Sanity Amber @ 11:30, One Man's Opinion @ 10:30, and Lust @ 9:30. The Horseshoe Tavern, free.

Elvis Mondays presents Boxes & Bags, Allie Hughes, Julia Set Generator, Alphabot!, The Sevenate, and more @ The Drake Underground, 9pm, free.

Angela Bower w/ Christine Bougie and Dafydd Hughes @ The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7pm, pwyc.

Out of This Spark presents Nina Nielsen and Jessy Bell-Smith @ The Tranzac (Tiki Room), 9 pm, $5. This is part of the 416519 (Toronto/Guelph) festival.

Pitter Patter Nights presents I Have Eaten the City w/ Capillary Action and Whiskey Priest @ The Boat, 9pm, $5.

Bad Flirt w/ Blooming Rosebuds and tba @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm.

TUESDAY (26 feb)

Two great, free shows on offer tonight.

Maya Postepski w/ Bruce Peninsula and Katie Stelmanis @ Walter Hall (U of T), 7:30pm, free.

The Edge 102.1 Dave Bookman's Nu Music Nite presents tba @ 12:00, the 6ixty8ights @ 11:10, Clothes Make the Man @ 10:20, and Matt White @ 9:30. The Horseshoe Tavern, free.

Lina Allemano Four w/ Nick Fraser @ The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7:30pm, pwyc.

Drumheller @ The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc. Also at the Rex on the 27th, and Somewhere There on 1 March.

Lindi Ortega w/ Deromantic @ Supermarket, 9pm, $5.

LAUGHstock presents The Paper Makers, Hallelujah, and Atlas Eyes @ Smiling Buddha, 9:30pm, $5.

Maximum RNR and Ashes @ Tattoo, $7.

WEDNESDAY (27 feb)

Key Witness, Honest I's, Caylie Staples, and R.O.M.I.N.S. @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm, free. I have enjoyed Key Witness in the past.

The Earth Tones @ The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Pitter Patter Nights presents Fire Flower Revue, Idle Tigers, Jesse Matthews, Leslie Predy @ The Boat, 9pm, $5.

The Pale Horses, Our Father, and Hoosier Poet @ Smiling Buddha, 8pm, $5.

Local Alternative feat. Saigon Hookers @ 12:00, Purr @ 11:10, Fighter/Lover @ 10:20, and New Groove Orchestra @ 9:30. The Horseshoe Tavern, $5.

THURSDAY (28 feb)

I recommend Mitzi's Sister, the Drake, the Boat, or Rancho Relaxo. Sneaky Dee's would probably be fun too (and make you feel charitable). I'll be at No Shame (at the Drake), which is hosting three excellent shows this weekend.

The Primordials w/ Ethel and the Mermen @ Mitzi's Sister, 9pm, free. Yay, Primordials! An honest-to-goodness 60s beat/garage band.

The Micronite Filters, Cam Clark & the Psycs @ Smiling Buddha, 9:30pm.

Deep Dark United @ The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7pm (I think), pwyc.

Elizabeth Bruce w/ The Good Ideas @ The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm (I think), pwyc.

No Shame presents The Two Minute Miracles, Amos the Transparent, Boats!, and Leif Vollebekk @ The Drake Underground, 9pm, $7. This is where I'll be.

Pitter Patter Nights presents Whale Tooth w/ Winter Gloves @ The Boat, 9pm, $5. Whale Tooth is good. presents Ketch Harbour Wolves, Bellewoods, and Les Kilt @ Rancho Relaxo, 8:45pm, $5. So many good shows tonight.

Steers and Queers feat. Lisa Bozikovic, Miss Conception, Lex Vaughn, Male Gayze, Alpha Q, Big Eva Edna, Sigourney Beaver, and Some Random Tall Guy @ The Dakota Tavern, $5. Lisa Bozikovic is super fantastic.

Sadie May Crash, Ed the Sock, Seard Ward, Still Life Still, and For the Record @ Sneaky Dee's, 8pm, $10. This is a fundraiser show.

FRIDAY (29 feb)

There is just too much to do tonight. If you're up for dancing and venue-hopping, I'd definitely do the early Drake show and then head over to Sneaks. If you'd rather rock out, then go to the Silver Dollar. If you feel like being moved (musically) in a church, then the Andre Charles Theriault release show is a good bet. For a good, kinda dance-y, indie music showcase, you want to be at Rancho Relaxo. And that's just the stuff I have opinions on . . .

Slowking w/ tba @ Mitzi's Sister.

No Shame presents Think About Life, OPOPO, and Green Go @ The Drake Underground, 7pm (early show), $5. Sweet! Dance party....

Haggard Beast 12 inch release party feat. The Guest Bedroom, Lunchmeat, Hot Monogamy, Batler, and DJ Troublessssshhhh @ Teranga, 10pm, $5 ($10 w/ record).

Pitter Patter Nights presents Rozasia, Extra Life, and The Dead Are Those Who Have Died @ The Boat, 9pm, $5.

Foxfire Forest, Flashboyz, and DJ Shit la Merde @ Sneaky Dee's, 10pm, $5 (I assume). Well, huh. After the Drake, continue dancing here.

Tripping Hazard (EP release) w/ Cold Dead Hands, Obviously Five Believers, and Invasions @ The Silver Dollar, 9pm, $5.

Local Alterna-Pop feat. Big Ideas @ 12:00, Prairie Cat @ 11:00, and tba @ 10:00. Lee's Palace, $6.

Two Way Monologues 11 presents Basement Arms, Barons and Lengthy, and Nich Worby @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $7. Nice! B & L are one of my favourite local groups. I will be here unless I'm needed at Sneaks.

Film Jam 7 feat. The Lovely Killbots, LLIONS, Two Scoops, The WitHouts, Ali the Son of Abdul, and Acrid Ricki @ El Mocambo (Second Floor), 8pm, $10 (or $8 w/ canned food donation). More info here: I do love LLIONS, a LLOT.

2nd James Brown Tribute feat. High Plains Drifter, All Star Toronto Performers, KC Roberts, and Jay Spectre @ El Mocambo (First Floor), 9pm, $12 (or $8 w/ canned food donation).

Disco Funk Groove Insanity! feat. The Elastocitizens @ 12:00, King Clancy @ 11:00, and Scobo @ 10:00. The Horseshoe Tavern, $10.

Andre Charles Theriault "Sings The Songs of Andre Charles Theriault" (CD release) w/ Ryan Masters, Jordaan Mason, and Owl/Eyes @ The Music Gallery, 7pm, $10.

SATURDAY (1 march)

The Wanted @ The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 6pm, pwyc.

The Annex Zoo's Clothe The Homeless/Raising the Roof fundraiser @ The Tranzac (Main Hall), 7pm, $5. Details here:

John Tielli, Edgar Breau, and Neil Haverty @ The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

No Shame presents Gravity Wave, The Magic, and Burn Planetarium @ The Drake Underground, 7pm (early show), $5. No Shame's outdone herself this week. Gravity Wave is now a stage band! I will be here, for sure.

Haggard Beast 12 inch release party 2 feat. 10,000 Watt Head, Terror Lake, Ghostlight, Sailboats Are White, and DJ Product Placement @ Teranga, 10pm, $5 ($10 w/ record).

The Beautiful Unknown (CD release) w/ Tribal Sun, Lower Back, and Tatti @ El Mocambo, (First Floor), 9pm, $10.

Two Way Monologues presents The Winks, Ruby Coast, The Books Elusive, and The Superstitions @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $6. If I didn't love Gravity Wave, I'd be here.

The Northwest Division (EP release) as part of Kensington Station @ Neutral, 10pm, $6 ($10 with EP).

Alt Rock N Roll! feat. The Spades @ 12:30, We Are The Take @ 11:30, Salingers @ 10:30, and Major Grange @ 9:30. The Horseshoe Tavern, $8.

The Pickups (EP release) w/ Entire Cities, Proof of Ghosts, and Tacoma Hellfarm Tragedy @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm, $10.

Will Play for Food (soup kitchen benefit) @ El Mocambo (Second Floor), $10, 5pm. More info here:

SUNDAY (2 march)

Mantler and The Silt @ The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7pm (I think), pwyc.

The WoodChoppers Association @ The Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7pm (I think), pwyc.

Wavelength 402 feat. The Weather Station, Muskox, and Boats! @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm, pwyc. Excellent!

Gather Round feat. Hamilton Trading Co. @ The Boat, 9pm, pwyc.

Benefit concert feat. The State of Things, The Mahones, Elliot Brood, Stephen Stanley (Lowest of the Low) and Carla MacNeil, Andy Maize and Josh Finlayson (The Skydiggers), and more @ The Mod Club, 8pm, pwyc. Proceeds to this Iain O'Keefe-Kaufman Education Fund.

Prescription drug + me = better life.

Wow, it's been so long since I've taken a prescription drug, and I'm quite astonished at it's efficacy in making life livable again. This nasty, nasty cold that I've had since last Tuesday wasn't getting any better so Sunday afternoon I went to a clinic and two hours later a doctor prescribed me drugs. Excellent. I'm still sick, but at least I can generally breathe.

Needless to say I haven't done any work of any sort in days, and I haven't been to a show in a week.

Friday, February 22, 2008


I've been feeling quite crappy the past few days. I don't recommend it. I'd like to be better tomorrow so I can celebrate a friend's birthday and go see Tin Bangs at the Mod Club (which I dislike, but I'll deal).

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Feeling kind of crummy.

Yeah, I don't know why. It just kind of snuck up on me this evening. First a sore throat, then tiredness (followed by a nap), then general malaise and low-level headache-yness. I think it's time to go to bed.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Dissertation avoidance.

I've been avoiding my dissertation the past few days. I know, it's bad. I will stop avoiding it soon. I had a busy weekend of going to shows---meh, meh, and then FUN---and Monday afternoon I spent several hours at the Boat, being an extra for the Gravity Wave movie. That was kinda fun, and I really should have been at home working instead. But not many people showed up, and I was the only one who brought CDs (to use as props), so I think it was good that I was there.

In other news, the fridge is now working again. It keeps working and then a few weeks later not working again. It's really annoying. But at least the landlord is good and comes to fix it pretty much right away. Still, I think he just needs to spring for a new fridge for us.

I have some meetings tomorrow, which is making me grumpy. And I signed on to do some work for a prof., but now am kinda regretting it. Extra cash is good, but I really don't need more excuses not to dissertate.

Why are my landlord and his wife having an argument/discussion at 2:30am? They are old, and ought to be asleep.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Indie Music 23.

Welcome to my weekly roundup of inexpensive indie(ish) musical happenings in downtown Toronto. I try to list as many shows here as I know about, though with a preference for listing those happening at venues I especially like, or featuring performers I know something about. This list is thus not comprehensive. In addition, I rarely list shows that cost $10 or more, and never ones that require advance ticket purchases. If I'm missing something or you have any comments, please do let me know.

I'm rushing this one off so you can check out Monday happenings. Will add more comments and show listings in a bit. The Wavelength festival show on Sunday was awesome!! And tonight (Monday) you should all go to the Boat.

MONDAY (18 feb)

Shoeless Monday feat. Sukerfactory @ 11:30, Luke Sneyd @ 10:30, and Downsview @ 9:30. The Horseshoe Tavern, free.

Elvis Monday feat. Organical, Dinosaur Bones, Allie Hughes, The People Of Canada, Steve Singh, and Leh Lo @ The Drake Underground, 9pm, free.

Christen Latham and Max Canin @ Mitzi's Sister, free.

LAUGHstock presents Crimson Shadows and tba @ The Smiling Buddha, 9:30pm.

Kaeru and Mandibles @ Tranzac (Tiki Room), 9 pm, pwyc. This is part of the Toronto/Guelph (416:519) series.

Pitter Patter Nights presents Jon McKiel and The Papermakers @ The Boat, 9pm, $5.

Crimson Shadows, Of The Epic, After The Invasion, and more @ Smiling Buddha, 9pm, $5.

Approximately 3 Peters @ The Cameron House (Back Room), 9pm.

TUESDAY (19 feb)

Jeffrey Lewis (in-store) @ Soundscapes, 7pm, free.

The Edge 102.1 Dave Bookman's Nu Music Nite feat. Keepin 6 @ 12:00, Opus Road @ 11:10, The John Henrys @ 10:20, and The Redux @ 9:30. The Horseshoe Tavern, free.

The Good Rats Radio and Corporation @ The Bovine, 9pm.

Cindy Doire, Andrea Ramolo, and Ory No'man @ Free Times Cafe.

This Is Not A Reading Series feat. Dan Kennedy (author of Rock On: An Office Power Ballad) in conversation with Dave Bidini w/ music by The Bicyles, hosted by Jonny Dovercourt @ The Gladstone, 7pm, free.

Darryl Erickson and Brian Arcand @ Mitzi's Sister, free.

Lina Allemano Four @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7:30pm, pwyc.

Owle Bird and Danger Music @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

William Del Ray w/ Mel Milime @ The Cameron House (Back Room), 10pm.

Autorickshaw @ Lula Lounge, $12. This group is rather different, and they were fantastic when I saw them a few years back.

WEDNESDAY (20 feb)

Pitter Patter Nights presents Fleece Elves w/ Elvyn @ The Boat, 9pm, $5.

Camp Combo @ Cadillac Lounge, 10 pm, pwyc.

Must Stash Hat, The Cunninghams, and The Doug Trucker Band @ The Smiling Buddha, 9:30pm, $5.

The Torrent @ Buddies In Bad Times Theatre, 10:30pm, free.

Zuku w/ Revolution Love @ Clinton's, 9pm, $6.

Jeff Straker, Katey Morley, and Heather Hill @ Free Times Cafe.

The Hunting Horns, Nick Rose (CD release), and Dan Griffin & The Regrets @ The Horseshoe Tavern, free.

Hotboxxx presents Haard @ 11:30, Persist @ 10:45, Prologic @ 10:00, Adam’s God @ 9:15, and Bolus @ 8:30. Lee's Palace, $5.

Alpha Galates @ Tattoo, $5.

Mike Glendon w/ Jaeda Kelly @ The Cameron House (Back Room), 10pm.

Eiderdown @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7:30pm, pwyc.

Lindsay Ferguson and Andy Swan @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc. Sounds good to me.

Rock for Renewables feat. Barons & Lengthy, Barn Owl, and Free Kisses @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm. This is a benefit show. B & L are loads of dance-y fun.

THURSDAY (21 feb)

Good shows on tonight. If I'm up for it, I'll go to the Drake. Otherwise, I'll check out Rancho---the Miles are great---or what's on at the Boat. Unless someone wants to grab a pint at the Cloak & Dagger with me.

No Shame presents Plants & Animals (CD release) w/ special guests The Bruce Peninsula @ The Drake Underground, 9pm, $12 (or $10 adv tix). This group's been getting buzz; one blogger has already declared them the 2008 Polaris Prize winner. We'll have to wait and see about that.

The Vestaloynes and Sisters of Mercy @ Mitzi's Sister, free.

Chris Warren & band @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7:30pm, pwyc.

Tina Sunshine, Samstag, and Linus & Lucy @ The Smiling Buddha, 9:30pm.

Pitter Patter Nights presents Rabbit Season, Boats!, Slow Hand Motem @ The Boat, 9pm, $5.

Two Way Monologues presents The Miles, Bluesky Borderline, and The Wisk @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $5. The Miles are three guys all ten years my junior, and they play tight, interesting, good music. Go see them.

The Hots, The Good Soldiers, Laganza @ El Mocambo (First Floor), 9pm, $5.

Proof of Ghosts, Cry Rumble, The Saffron Sect, David Schoonderbeek, and Doc Pickles @ The Cloak & Dagger, 9pm, pwyc.

The Parkdale Revolutionary Orchestra @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Local Loud feat. Shatterpoint @ 11:15, Effigy @ 10:15, and tba @ 9:15. Lee's Palace, $4.

Tenth Planet and Japhy Ryder @ The Bovine, 9pm, $5.

Samba in Solidarity feat. Bateria de Escola de Samba, Dane Jah Ras, Truth Is...?, La Revoluvionaire Group de Capoeia @ El Mocambo (Second Floor), 9pm, $7. Fundraiser event.

FRIDAY (22 feb)

The Heavy, The Giant Baby, and The City @ Smiling Buddha, 9:30pm.

The New State and QuiQue Escamilla @ Mitzi's Sister.

Laromlab, Robot Cowboy, and Nifty @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm, $5. Nifty was awesome when I saw them on Sunday!

Frankie Whyte & the Dead Idols @ El Mocambo (First Floor), 9pm, $5.

Groundcrew and Ash Lee Blade @ The Bovine, 9pm, $5.

Racloned @ The Cameron House (Back Room), 10pm.

Vacuity (CD release), Stirling, These Electric Lives, and In Transit @ The Horseshoe Tavern, 9pm, $8. Should be good. I need a break from the Horseshoe, though.

Local Indie CD Release feat. tba @ 12:00, Insurgentlemen @ 11:00, and tba @ 10:00. Lee's Palace, $10.

Northern Dusk Records presents Yonder (CD release) w/ Boys Who Say No and Dan Griffin @ The Rivoli, 9pm, $10.

Jubilation w. The Human Statues @ El Mocambo (Second Floor), 9pm, $10.

Kae Sun, iNSiDEAMiND, and Louwop @ Clinton's Tavern (NuJazz Festival Performance), 9pm, $10.

SATURDAY (23 feb)

Tin Bangs and tba @ The Mod Club, 10pm. Well, this is clearly where I'll be. Clearly.

Marienbad, Subculture Syndrome, The Canaries, and Antitheory @ Smiling Buddha, 9:30pm.

Wendy Lands @ The Cameron House (Back Room), 10pm.

Fidget and Krakatoa Metal @ The Bovine, 9pm, $5.

East Coast Joel Plaskett Approved Rock N Roll! feat. Two Hours Traffic @ 12:00, Wooden Sky @ 11:00, and My Shaky Jane @ 10:00. The Horseshoe Tavern, $8. Wait... maybe I don't need a break from the Horseshoe.

Aceface @ Neutral, $6.

Spiral Beach w/ Slim Twig @ WhipperSnapper Gallery, 9pm, $10 (or $8 adv tix). Fun!

CATL feat. David McMorrow, Golden Ghetto, and Horse @ Mitzi's Sister, pwyc. CATL is recommended by Dan W.

Rude Mule presents Major Grange w/ Danielle Duval and William Delray @ The Rivoli, 9pm, $5.

Maniac, Piledriver, Spewgore, and Dipsomania @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm.

Truth Explosion Magazine 4th Anniversary Party feat. DJs More Proof @ 12:30, Hell Yeah Fuck Yeah @ 11:30, Delinquents @ 10:30, and Video Dead @ 9:30. Lee's Palace, $10.

SUNDAY (24 feb)

Wavelength 401 feat Shitt Hottt, Brides, Nick Storring @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm, pwyc. This is worth your while to take in if you're into the sound on offer.

The Spider Dogs and The Sound Foundation @ Mitzi's Sister.

Gather Round feat. Hamilton Trading Co. @ The Boat, 9pm, $5.

Wavelength 400-4.

Well, that was excellent! And exactly what I needed. Definitely one of the best shows I've been to since I started going to shows. Congrats to all involved.

I actually really wasn't looking forward to the show, but wanted to go because I'd missed all the other Wavelength Festival events. What was I thinking?! Must be that the crowded Teranga show didn't do justice to OPOPO and Green Go when I saw them play with Woodhands (and Bocce) last month. And Donne Roberts and band was awesome, and Nifty was unexpectedly great! So I had a fantastic time. Then RN and I went to late-night Chinese, and I complained about people (in general, not in particular). I shouldn't have done that.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

I've been bad about updating this blog. Basically, life continues. Went to a couple shows in the past couple of days, and had a good time, but mostly because there were good people about. Music-wise, I've heard better. I'm itching for some good indie pop. Or something interesting and different. And, no matter what people say, I really don't much like the Horseshoe. I've had good times there, but I don't particularly dig the vibe of the place.

Laundry has sucked the energy out of me. I think I need a nap.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Small progress.

Managed to get several pages of my dissertation done yesterday. I shouldn't say "done"---it's more like vomit on the page---but at least there's something written out in the form of paragraphs. I decided to not check e-mail for 5 hours, and it was a good plan. I of course got distracted with other things, but wasn't obsessively checking the internet for updates. I will do the same thing today, and attempt to get another subsection or two written out.

Last night I really had intended to check out the first night of the Wavelength festival, but then YT came over and we had wine and baked goods and TV. And it was fun. We haven't hung out in a long time, so it was good. Tonight, though, I'll be at Rancho Relaxo for TWM's "feast of indie" for sure. I haven't been to a show in a week and a half.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


It's been snowing all day. Really. And it's ridiculous. Toronto isn't supposed to have winter like this.

So needless to say I am not going out tonight, though there are things I could be doing. I will dissertate instead. And drink hot liquids and try to stay warm.

I may not leave the apartment tomorrow. Unless we need food. Which maybe we do. Crap.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Indie Music 22 [short].

Welcome to my weekly roundup of inexpensive indie(ish) musical happenings in downtown Toronto. I try to list as many shows here as I know about, though with a preference for listing those happening at venues I especially like, or featuring performers I know something about. This list is thus not comprehensive. In addition, I rarely list shows that cost $10 or more, and never ones that require advance ticket purchases. If I'm missing something or you have any comments, please do let me know.

Here's my short list of events. I've been crazy busy in the last week. So, check venue listings on these sites: The Bovine, The Cameron House, El Mocambo, The Horseshoe Tavern, Mitzi's Sister, The Rivoli, The Smiling Buddha, Sneaky Dee's, Supermarket, and Tranzac. There's more over at Zoilus, Stillepost, and Musicologist. The Wavelength Festival runs this weekend---I will definitely check out some of it, and you should too. This week may also see me hit up The Boat, Rancho Relaxo, and The Horseshoe Tavern.

MONDAY (11 feb)

Going to bed early.

TUESDAY (12 feb)

I'm not going to a show.

WEDNESDAY (13 feb)

Rock-n-Burlesque feat. Fire Hydrant, Fine Motor Control, and some burlesque performers @ The Boat, $5. More details here.

THURSDAY (14 feb)

A handful of Valentine's-themed shows tonight. And then there's the first night of the Wavelength festival, which is where I will probably be.

Wavelength #400, Night One feat. Bruce Peninsula, Huckleberry Friends, and Terry Riley's "In C" played by the Social Music Workgroup @ Music Gallery, 7 pm, pwyc.

Lipstick, Cherry presents Loveless (My Bloody Valentine tribute) w/ Germans, Sleeping Kings of Iona, Gravity Wave, To Downcast Your Eyes, Hollowphonic, DJ Pammm, and more @ The Drake Underground, 9pm, $5.

FRIDAY (15 feb)

Good options, with good people guaranteed at each of these events:

Wavelength #400, Night Two feat. Glissandro 70 (DJ set), Bocce, Daniel Nebiat, Sister Suvi, and Abdominal @ Gladstone Hotel, 9 pm, pwyc.

Two Way Monologues Indie Feast fest. Whale Tooth, The Coast Guard, After the Weather, and Diamond Teeth @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $5.

The Boy From ET (CD release) w/ Ajay Mehra @ Tranzac, pwyc.

Kate Maki (CD release) @ The Cameron House (Back Room), 10pm.

Big Primpin' Happy Valentine's Gay Party w/ Kids on TV and special guests @ The Drake Underground, 9pm.

SATURDAY (16 feb)

Wavelength #400, Night Three feat. Lullabye Arkestra, DD/MM/YYYY, Dance Electric, Telefauna, and Femme Generation @ Theatre Centre (1087 Queen W.), doors 8 pm, pwyc.

Indie Rock Extravaganza feat. Raised By Swans, Great Bloomers, Key Witness, and First Person Shooter @ The Horseshoe Tavern, 9pm, $8. This is where I'll be, with friends.

SUNDAY (17 feb)

Wavelength #400, Night Four feat. Nifty, Donne Roberts, Green Go, Opopo, and Transylvanien @ Sneaky Dee's, 8pm, pwyc.

No list this week.

I've no time to compile my listings, but I will probably do something to at least let you know what I'm planning on checking out.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Conference is done.

It went really well! But I'm totally exhausted and am not going to do anything today.

Friday, February 08, 2008


Conference is in the morning. I can't sleep . . . nervous, excited, freaked out, a million things on my mind. Will be happy when Friday is over.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Good life, busy life.

I know I've been delinquent about updating this blog. It's been a busy few days. The grad conference I'm helping to organize is coming up soon---Friday and Saturday! This week is also a tutorial week for me, which means I'm on campus more than I'd like to be.

Last night I went to the Silver Dollar for a Beach Boys tribute show. It was so much fun! Some of the music was fantastic, and what I didn't get didn't bother me in the least: I was just happy to be there taking it all in. There was a bunch of people I knew, which made the whole thing that much better. Thank you to all the organizers and performers. Fun, fun, fun.

Highlights: Ken Farrell (Gravity Wave), Picnicboy (because I just have no idea), The Bicycles (yipee!), and the "supergroup": ex-OPG (Ontario Power Generation) with Laura Barrett and backup singers/percussion. Also, Great Lenin's Ghost! were good too: I must see them perform again. (They play tonight at the Cameron House and then on Friday at the El Mo.) What a great group of performers.

Ok, I need to get going.

P.S. I neglected to mention earlier that on Saturday night (at the Horseshoe) I ended the show on stage with the band, dancing with a maraca in my hand. So that was different. :-)

And it's snowing outside:

Monday, February 04, 2008

Mix disk.

I've just finished putting together a mix CD for a Massey exchange thing. It was a fun process, but a long one! Being obsessive, I of course had to go through lots and lots of music, much of which I hadn't had a chance to really listen to yet. I made a few loose rules for myself: I wanted the list to be a bit varied in terms of musical style, but in general broadly "indie"; I wanted to highlight bands that I've seen live, and local bands in particular, but I didn't want to be strict about this; I wouldn't include any bands that I put on a mix CD I made for an earlier exchange; and everything had to have been released in the last year or so.

Here's what I came up with:

This was hard . . . the disk includes some stuff you will probably have heard, and other stuff you may not have. These are all songs I like, from bands I like. Many of these groups/performers you can see play in Toronto, usually for not too much money. If you like what you hear, you don't have to wait too long to go see Amos the Transparent (based in Ottawa), Basia Bulat (Toronto/London), Bon Iver (Wisconsin), Born Ruffians (Toronto), Chromeo (Montreal/NY) The Diableros (Toronto), Justice (France), Laura Barrett (Toronto), Metric, Miracle Fortress (Montreal), The Primordials (Toronto), Vampire Weekend (Brooklyn), and Yeasayer (Brooklyn) play live in local venues; The National's coming in June with R.E.M. and Modest Mouse (!!). I've only put on new(ish) songs on this disk. Some are from albums that haven't been released yet.

1. Amos the Transparent - Title Track (Everything I've Forgotten to Forget, 2007)
2. The Apples in Stereo - Energy (New Magnetic Wonder, 2007)
3. Basia Bulat - Snakes and Ladders (Oh, My Darling, 2007)
4. Bon Iver - Skinny Love (For Emma, Forever Ago, 2007)
5. Born Ruffians - Hummingbird (Red, Yellow and Blue, 2008)
6. Chromeo - Fancy Footwork (Fancy Footwork, 2007)
7. Cuff the Duke - Surging Revival (Sidelines of the City, 2007)
8. The Diableros - Nothing Down in Hogtown (Aren't Ready for the Country, 2007)
9. Holy Fuck - Royal Gregory (Holy Fuck LP, 2007)
10. Justice - D.A.N.C.E. (+, 2007)
11. Kate Nash - Foundations (Made of Bricks, 2007)
12. Laura Barrett - Robot Ponies (Earth Sciences EP, 2008 re-release)
13. Metric - Hardwire (Grow Up and Blow Away, 2007)
14. Miracle Fortress - Have You Seen In Your Dreams? (Five Roses, 2007)
15. The National - Fake Empire (Boxer, 2007)
16. Of Montreal - Gronlandic Edit (Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?, 2007)
17. The Primordials - That's, If You Want Me To (Fourteen Prime Numbers, 2007)
18. Spoon - Don't You Evah (Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga, 2007)
19. Vampire Weekend - Oxford Comma (Vampire Weekend, 2008)
20. Wintersleep - Weighty Ghost (Welcome to the Night Sky, 2007)
21. Yeasayer - Sunrise (All Hour Cymbals, 2007)

And here's the disk I made a few months earlier. I think it's good, but the new one is I think reflective of my growing interest in discovering new music.

Indie Extraordinary! A selection of songs I’m listening to at home and at shows.

1. Homework - The Bicycles (The Good, The Bad & The Cuddly, 2006)
2. The Crash - The Craft Economy (All On C EP, 2007)
3. Hang Me, Oh Hang Me - The Deep Dark Woods (Hang Me, Oh Hang Me, 2007)
4. Narcissist In The Forest - Foxfire Forest (Foxfire Forest, 2007)
5. My Ghetto Noise - Ghetto Pony (Without A Name)
6. Thick Atmosphere - Ghetto Pony (Without A Name)
7. Footprints - The Gravity Wave (Martyr’s Brigade)
8. Cure for the Common Cold - Ladyfingers (My Prom, 2006)
9. The Sun The Stars - LLIONS (demo EP, 2007)
10. Righteous Heart - Nathan Lawr & The Minotaurs (A Sea Of Tiny Lights, 2007)
11. My Right Versus Yours - The New Pornographers (Challengers, 2007)
12. Walk In The Park - Oh No! Oh My! (Oh No! Oh My!)
13. Parables - Rebekah Higgs (Rebekah Higgs, 2006)
14. Edmonton - The Rural Alberta Advantage (The Rural Alberta Advantage EP)
15. Made Of Stone - Spiral Beach (Ball, 2007)
16. Odessa - Tin Bangs (Nice Backpack . . . You’re So Weird EP, 2007)
17. White Lies (Timekiller) - Tin Bangs (Ontario In Stereo EP, 2007)
18. The Age Of Pretending - The Mission District (Youth Games)
19. Dancer (Extended) - Woodhands (Dancer single, 2007)
20. I Can’t See Straight - Woodhands (Woodhands/Peter Project split single, 2007)
21. Little Fool - The XYZ Affair (A Few More Published Studies)

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Indie Music 21.

Welcome to my weekly roundup of inexpensive indie(ish) musical happenings in downtown Toronto. I try to list as many shows here as I know about, though with a preference for listing those happening at venues I especially like, or featuring performers I know something about. This list is thus not comprehensive. In addition, I rarely list shows that cost $10 or more, and never ones that require advance ticket purchases. If I'm missing something or you have any comments, please do let me know.

There's a lot of good stuff this week, as I've come to expect. And there's always lots of stuff that I'm not listing. Like shows that cost more than $10, for example. If I were to go out every day this week, I'd do the Tranzac on Monday; The Beach Boys thing Tuesday; the Drake on Wednesday; the Supermarket or the Boat on Thursday---maybe both, depending on the timing of the bands; Rancho Relaxo on Friday (you should def. go); probably one of the El Mocambo shows or the Silver Dollar on Saturday; and Wavelength on Sunday.

Note that my listings shouldn't be relied upon as the gospel truth. I and obsessive and try to get things right, and I'll update if I find out about changes, but if you're keen on something, I'd double check just to make sure.

MONDAY (4 feb)

Spectrum (Sonic Boom from Spaceman 3) (in-store performance) @ Sonic Boom, 7pm, free.

Angela Bower w/ Christine Bougie and Dafydd Hughes @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7pm, pwyc.

Shoeless Monday feat. Loud Love @ 11:30, The Heavy @ 10:30, and Littlefoot Longfoot @ 9:30. The Horseshoe Tavern, free.

Elvis Monday presents Still Life Still, Boxes & Bags, The People of Canada, The Human Statues, and The Labour Of @ The Drake Underground, 9pm, free.

John Allaire and Emily Weedon @ Mitzi's Sister, pwyc.

LAUGHstock presents The Flying Museum Band, Soul Rebel Sound, and Jesse Cairns @ The Smiling Buddha, 9:30pm.

Out of this Spark presents Matias and Chris Yang @ Tranzac (Tiki Room), 9 pm, $5.

TUESDAY (5 feb)

The Edge 102.1 Dave Bookman's Nu Music Nite feat. Secret Japanese Girlfriend @ 12:00, Wild Sweet Orange @ 11:10, The Whigs @ 10:20, and Hello Operator (CD release) @ 9:30. The Horseshoe Tavern, free. Huh. I predict this will be good!

Lina Allemano Four @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7:30pm, pwyc.

Newberry vs Newberry
, Canary Mine, and Violet Lyal @ Mitzi's Sister.

Peter James Fox, Alex Woodrow, Darrelle London, Trick of Disaster, and Brooke Fraser @ The Smiling Buddha, 9:30pm.

The Beach Boys/Weezer Tribute Night feat. The Bicycles, Laura Barrett, PDF Format, Shawn Jurek, and others @ The Silver Dollar, 8 pm, $5. Well, clearly this is a show I must go to. Clearly. See you there! More deets here.

LAUGHstock presents Dinosaur Bones, The Metacomets, and Alphabot! @ The Boat, 9pm, $5.

Great Aunt Ida, Jack Breakfast, and Balderdash feat. Dan Goldman @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Pink and Black presents Lifestory:Monologue and Sons&Lovers @ The Bovine, 9pm, $tba.

Good Sounds Good feat. Sarah Shafey, Styrofoam Ones, and Mike Celia @ The Cameron House (Back Room), 10pm, $6.


BC3000 and Sonic 500 with Greg Hambleton @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7:30pm, pwyc.

Marcel Aucoin w/ Mantler and Michael J @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Local Alternative feat. tba @ 12:00, Terns @ 11:10, In House Mavericks @ 10:20, and Craig Smith & The Saints @ 9:30. The Horseshoe Tavern, $4.

Pitter Patter Nights presents Jenn Foster, Winhara, and Black Hat Brigade @ The Boat, $5.

Andre Ethier and Ghosthands @ Supermarket, 9 pm, $5.

Little Women (New York City, member of Zs), Nifty, Cow Tongue, and DJ Daniel Vila @ Teranga, 10 pm, $5.

The Michael Parks and Tres Bien Ensemble @ The Smiling Buddha, 9:30pm, pwyc.

Baby Dee w/ Sandro Perri @ The Drake Underground, 8pm, $12 ($8 in advance from Rotate This and Soundscapes). Read an interview with Dee here.

The Cheap Speakers w/ Great Lenin's Ghost! @ The Cameron House (Back Room), 10pm. Both bands are worth seeing.

THURSDAY (7 feb)

Infighter, The Hots, and Public @ Supermarket, 9pm, $5. I've been waiting a long time to see Infighter again.

Local Rock feat. Bury The Bully @ 11:15, Hello Beautiful @ 10:15, and Apollosdown @ 9:15. Lee's Palace, $4.

The Maylee & Slippers Sweatshop Hop II w/ Woodhands @ The Boat, 10 pm, $5. Come for the sweaty workout, stay for the sweaty dancing! Ok, that was way lame. But seriously: fun!

NudE as the nEWs w/ Geraldine and Sandro Perri @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Odyssey (Gerry Alvarez from The Gruesomes) w/ Obviously Five Believers and The Invasions @ Mitzi's Sister, pwyc.

No Shame presents Jane Vain & The Dark Matter, The Parkdale Revolutionary Orchestra, and Anhai @ The Drake Underground, 9pm, $5. Definitely recommended if you're up for something a smidge different.

Effigy, Trigger Effect, and tba @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm, $5.

The Ryde and High Voltage @ The Bovine, 9pm, $5.

Quadrophonic w/ Joanna Mohammad @ The Cameron House (Back Room), 10pm.

Wolff and Tuba w/ Doc Pickles (Secret Japanese Girlfriend) and Hollowphonic @ El Mocambo (First Floor), 8pm, $10.

FRIDAY (8 feb)

Little Brown Bat and To Downcast Your Eyes @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Tin Roof Rusted w/ Lucky Fool @ Mitzi's Sister.

Salarymen, The WG's, 122 Greige, and DJ Anousheh @ Smiling Buddha, 10pm, $5.

Ten Kens, Metz, For that Day, and Hijack Delta @ Sneaky Dees, 9pm, $5. I didn't like Ten Kens when I saw them live, but I do like their recorded tunes. Maybe they've changed up their act, or maybe I just didn't get it. You decide.

Two Way Monologues presents The Schomberg Fair, The Stables, and B.A. Johnston @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $7. This is where I'd be for sure if not for the need to be a history grad student Friday night. The Schomberg Fair is rock 'n banjorific with just the right balance between murder ballads and songs about hobos (their descriptions). One of my faves. Plus, B. A. is a guy you gotta see, so I hear (and believe).

Ska, Pop & Rock feat. Two Scoops @ 12:30, After The Anthems @ 11:30, SCOBO @ 10:30, and The Blame-Its @ 10:00. Lee's Palace, $5.

Two Scoops, The Class Riot, and Personal Circus @ Lee's Palace, doors 10 pm, $6.

Local Alternative feat. tba @ 12:30, The Joys @ 11:30, Free Press @ 10:30, and tba @ 9:30. The Horseshoe Tavern, $6.

Macro Fiesta and other bands tba @ Cadillac Lounge, $5.

Ill Of Day (CD release) w/ All The Brightness, Rise For Order, and Great Lenin's Ghost! @ El Mocambo (First Floor), 9pm, $5.

Jeremy Robinson w/ Andrew Heintzman @ The Cameron House (Back Room), 10pm.

Shortwave w/ Slim Pickens and Opopo @ The Rivoli, 9pm, $6.

SATURDAY (9 feb)

Castlemusic, Ryan Driver, Anna Linda Siddall, and Alex Lukashevsky @ Eastminster United Church, 4pm, $5.

Nadja (in-store) @ Sonic Boom, 6pm, free.

The Horables @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 6pm, pwyc.

The Weather Station, Casey Mecija (from Ohbijou), and Lisa Bozikovic @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc. If you're looking for something awesome, this is it.

The Watter Bros., Rebellion, and The Felines @ Mitzi's Sister.

The Rosie Jones Band and The Shalyn Gray Project @ The Smiling Buddha, 9:30pm.

The Hoa Hoas, The Disraelis, Picturesound, and The Superstitions @ The Silver Dollar, $5.

The Von Drats, Trole, The Primordials, and The Sisters of Mercy @ El Mocambo (Second Floor), 9pm, $5.

Minority and Stolenowners @ The Bovine, 9pm, $5.

Ministry of the Environment w/ Adam Warner @ The Cameron House (Back Room), 10pm.

Local Alternative feat. Shenanigans @ 12:30, Moore @ 11:30, Virtue & Vice @ 10:30, and Honky @ 9:30. The Horseshoe Tavern, $6.

Bob Marley Tribute / Daily Bread Food Bank Benefit feat. lots of people @ Lee's Palace, 9pm, $15 (or $10 w/ non-perishable food donation). You can also get adv tix ($9) for this. Details here. There's also a Bob Marley tribute night at the El Mocambo on Thursday.

This one is now sold out: Yeasayer, MGMT, and Foxfire Forest @ El Mocambo (First Floor), 10pm.

SUNDAY (10 feb)

Lazy Sunday Matinee with Olenka @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 2:30pm, pwyc.

Laura Hubert @ Mitzi's Sister, 3-6pm.

Wavelength 399 feat. Megan Hamilton & the Volunteer Canola @ 11:00pm and Jane Vain & the Dark Matter @ 10:00pm. Sneaky Dee's, pwyc. Good stuff. I will probably go.

Sandbox @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10:30pm, pwyc.

Linda Mercer, Nik Beat, Joani Paige, Ernest Lee, and Deanna Prall @ Mizti's Sister.

Gather Round feat. Silver Speakers and Hamilton Trading Co. @ The Boat, 9pm, $5.

Vitamin X (Holland) w/ Reprobates, Hazardous Waste, and tba @ Rancho Relaxo, 8pm, $8.

Back in TO; FBP show.

I'm back, and just in time to catch a fun lineup at the Horseshoe last night. Five Blank Pages were headlining and celebrating their last show with Rajiv (bass, excitement) and Chelen (drums, cuteness). It was loads of fun. I will miss them. But they'll be back with some new people in a few months.