Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Podcast 37 (29 April - 3 May 2009).

Tyler and Jen welcome Lowell Sostomi and Andrew Kekewich from the Toronto band Great Bloomers to the podcast. In between chatting we play songs by Ponytail ("Beg Waves"), John Doe & the Sadies ("Are the Good Times Really Over for Good?"), Green Go ("Put Your Specs on Boy"), Sports ("Warn Me"), Great Bloomers ("Speak of Trouble"), and The Rural Alberta Advantage (untitled song, WOXY [Cincinnati radio station] live recording).

Great Bloomer's new album, Speak of Trouble, is now out from Maple Music. It's super great. If you're at all into, well, "Canadiana"---lyric-driven pop with a country-roots flair---grab a copy for yourself at your local independent record store, or buy it online.

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[Photo of Great Bloomers taken at a show at the Trepid House in Waterlook last weekend, by Owen Cherry.]

Oh, and I should add this video my friend Colin Medley took of the band not long ago in Toronto:

Indie Music 78 (28 April-5 May 2009).

Like this list? Join my Google Group to get my weekly Toronto indie music listings. Or, the Facebook group. Subscribe to my weekly podcast (or download the episodes) here, or through iTunes. Or just listen to the latest one, and all the other ones, at Zygiella. Make sure to check the rest of this blog for show reviews and photos, giveaways, and downloads.

Welcome to my weekly roundup of inexpensive indie(ish) musical happenings in downtown Toronto, all for $10 or less. If I'm missing something you think I should list, or you have any comments, let me know. I star (*) shows that most interest me.

There are quite a lot of good $10-or-less shows on this week. I've starred only the ones that really appeal to me, but everything on this list is potentially worth checking out for a variety of reasons. If I had my way, this is what I'd do: Music Gallery show on Tuesday; show-hop between the Drake and the Ponytail shows on Wednesday; Thursday I'd go see the Sadies & John Doe at Sonic Boom, stop in at the Weather Station CD release, and then go to Wrongbar for Green Go; come Friday, I'd go see Chris Yang and Diamond Rings at Tranzac; Saturday, Great Bloomers CD release; and then on Sunday I'd have to start at The Theatre Centre, then decide between Wavelength or the strong lineup at Rancho. Ouff. Fantastic/hard choices.

What is you plan for the week?

Seriously, this week is amazing. Go out and enjoy a little part of it!

TUESDAY (28 apr)

St. Dirt Elementary School @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7:30pm, pwyc.

Drumheller @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Winnebagos of Death w/ Quincy Le Palm, and The Runaway Catholics @ Free Times Cafe, 8:30pm, $5.

David Baxter w/ Dolly @ The Dakota Tavern, 9pm, $8.

The Music Gallery presents Mountains (drone duo from Brooklyn NY / Thrill Jockey Records) w/ Matthew “Doc” Dunn and Ayal Senior’s Spacechurch @ The Music Gallery, 7pm, $10 (or $5 for members, students, seniors).

WEDNESDAY (29 apr)

Granny Boots feat. Emma McKenna and The Torrent, w/ DJ John Caffery, and debut of videos for Final Fantasy, Kids on TV, $100, Katie Stelmanis, The Phonemes, Bob Wiseman, The Torrent, Hank, and The Pining @ The Gladstone Hotel (Melody Room), 7:30-10:30pm, free. “The videos were made by kids from City Alternative high school.”

Download: The Torrent, “Leopold Bloom” (Building Block Compilation 1, 2009).

PWYC Weds feat. Honest I's (w/ The Coyote Boxcar Fox Choir), The Ministry of the Environment, and Airheart @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, pwyc.

Mark Pesci presents Teen Anger, Gardens (Detroit), DCT, and Magic Cheezies @ Sneaky Dee's, 8:30pm-midnight, $8. Afterparty @ Oddfellows (Queen & Shaw) starting at midnight. After the bands are done, What's Poppin' (dance party/DJ night) takes over at Sneaky Dee's, doors 11:45pm, free.

* Primary Colors presents Ponytail (Baltimore), Romo Roto, and Brides @ The Deleon White Gallery (1139 College, west of Dufferin), 8:35pm, $10.

Download: Ponytail, “Celebrate the Body Electric (It Came From An Angel)” (Ice Cream Spiritual, 2008).

* Valery Gore, B. Knox, and Evening Hymns @ The Drake Hotel (Underground), 8pm, $10.

THURSDAY (30 apr)

Everything is happening this Thursday. You can't not go out... unless you are paralyzed by indecision, which is possible.

* John Doe & The Sadies (in-store) @ Sonic Boom, 7pm, free. All ages. Bring a donation for the Daily Bread Food Bank.

Bluegrass & Old Time Thursday w/ Makita Hack & The Log Rollers @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 7pm, pwyc.

Megan Hamilton w/ Eric Welton @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Indie Credit 2 feat. The Wilderness, RecordBreaker, and Alright Alright @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $5. Proceeds to Kiva.org.

Marianne Turner, Madelaine Slate, and Brian Passmore @ Holy Joe's, 8:30pm, $5.

In Support of Living, Picturesound, and Rich Girl @ El Mocambo (First Floor), 9pm, $5.

* No Shame presents Green Go (CD release), The Magic, Everything All the Time, and OPOPO DJs @ Wrongbar, 9pm, $5.

Download: Green Go, "Fool Me Once" (Borders, 2009). And win tickets and a copy of the new disk here.

B'MO Crazy, The Lovely Killbots, and La Casa Muerte @ The Boat, 9pm, $5

The Champion Heartache, Deromantic, Wildlife, and Dave Schoonderbeek @ The Silver Dollar Room, 9pm, $5.

The PiNG presents The Cruelest Month feat. Flowers of Hell, Beta Cloud, and visuals by General Chaos @ The Renaissance Cafe, 8pm, $6.

* The Weather Station (CD release) w/ Isla Craig & Muskox, Snowblink, Weird Weather, and Lisa Bozikovic @ Tranzac (Main Hall), 8pm (early), $8 (or $15 gets you the CD too).

* Quick Fix presents Immaculate Machine, Will Currie & The Country French, The Elwins, and DJ Shit la Merde @ The Drake Hotel (Underground), 8pm, $10.

FRIDAY (1 may)

* Out of This Spark presents Diamond Rings, Chris Yang, and M.S. @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Friends Explode present Room Party (dance party) feat. DJ Hi Mom w/ Tom Croozbeh and Animal Monster @ The Boat, 10pm, $5.

Rollin' & Scratchin' presents Parallels, TMDP (DJ set), and Smilotron @ Supermarket, 10pm, $5 (b4 11pm).

Barzin (CD release) w/ Olenka & the Autumn Lovers and Octoberman @ The Rivoli, 9pm, $6.

* TWM 40 feat. Black Diamond Bay (CD release), Make Your Exit, and The Dress Whites @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm, $7.

* Mark Pesci presents The Goodnight Loving, White Wires, The Bitters, and Little Girls @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $8.

SATURDAY (2 may)

Marienbad @ The Mod Club, 10pm, $10. You'll get in for free if you e-mail the band ahead of time and show up by 10:45pm: marienbad.musicATgmailDOTcom. (Don't be shy about this.)

Ramblin' Rose, Kyp Harness, Marquis de Amberfish, and Ruth Jenkins, w/ hosts Bo Green and Yawn Temiseva @ Renaissance Cafe, 9pm.

Clara Engel and Buligan / Jurgensen / Lewis @ Tequila Bookworm, 9pm, pwyc.

SunnyLane Records Monthly Saturday Night Ramble presents Andrew DeVillers and Dog Is Blue @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Download: Dog Is Blue, "Alligator Song" (Makes Ghost Noises, 2009).

Two Foot Falls, Vanderpark, and Left Side Drive @ The Rivoli, 9pm, $5.

Sunlit Ambush and Tenth Planet @ The Bovine Sex Club, 9pm, $6.

TWM presents Cool Dad, Cut Throat Britva, The Rhythm Method, and Witch Ever @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $6.

* No Shame presents Great Bloomers (CD release), Sports: The Band, Gavin Gardiner & the Cutting Edge, and Modernboys Moderngirls @ The Horseshoe, 9pm, $10 (or $8 in adv).

Download: Great Bloomers, “Speak of Trouble” (Speak of Trouble, 2009).

Ex~po and Tiger Lil (Susan Hutcheson) @ School (70 Fraser Ave.), 9pm, $15. Fundraiser for the Weekend to End Breast Cancer (Princess Margaret Hospital).

SUNDAY (3 may)

* Wavelength 461 feat. Josh Reichmann Oracle Band, Cursed Arrows, and Stop Time, w/ DJ Tapedeckbros, hosted by Doc Pickles, and visuals by General Chaos @ Sneaky Dee’s, 9pm, pwyc ($5-$10 sugg).

Download: Josh Reichmann Oracle Band, “Agoraphobia” (Deerhunter cover).

* SummerWorks Festival 2009 launch party feat. Bob Wiseman, Nils Edenloff (from The Rural Alberta Advantage), and Foxfire @ The Theatre Centre (1087 Queen St. W., side door), 7:35pm, $5.

* Construction & Destruction, Mathias Kom (from The Burning Hell), and Mint Julip @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $5.

EndProgram (tour kickoff) w/ Mr. Plow @ Annie's On Queen, 9pm, $7.

MONDAY (4 may)

Alarianis @ Tequila Bookworm, 9pm, pwyc.

Parkas, The Cheap Speaker, Parker & Seville, and P.S. I Love You @ Supermarket, 9pm.

TUESDAY (5 may)

* Dave Bookman's Nu Music Nite feat. Bella Clava, Boxes & Bags, Tin Star Orphans, and The Balconies @ The Horseshoe Tavern, 8:30pm, free.

GoodSoundsGood presents Moulann, Dee Planche and Tanika Charles @ Supermarket, 9pm, $6.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Ticket/CD Giveaway: Green Go (CD release) @ Wrongbar, 30 Apr.

First, I review the new album. Scroll down further for a couple song downloads for contest details.

As a live music fan rather than an avid clubber, I prefer bands to DJs—no disrespect intended. But I do like dancing, and once in a while a really top-notch electro group can get me really moving. Woodhands, of course. But perhaps my second favourite is a young Guelph band called Green Go.

Up to now, to take a bit of the party home with me, I've had to do with a smattering of demo songs, a sampler/teaser given out at shows since the fall, and their more recent remixes of some of my favourite Canadian bands. But now---well, next Tuesday---Green Go's got their debut full-length ready. And, as expected, it's great.

Standout tracks on Borders include "You Know You Want It," "Ghosts of the Future," and "Fool Me Once." "You Know You Want It" is a fast-paced number with interesting, inventive synth lines, two drummers, and multiple vocal parts. "Fool Me Once" is the high point of the album for me. It starts out slow then gets fast, moving back and forth a couple times, highlighting the importance of the vocals and lyrics on the album. Impressive synth, bass, and guitar lines play off each other, backed up by drums. I would think it impossible not to dance to this one. There's also more standard electro pop like the uber catchy "Brains for Breakfast," and the fun, energetic songs I most associate with this band: "Put Your Specs On Boy," "Cash Money Gremlins," and "Watch Your Step."

The slow songs are some of the ones that really got me into this band, but Toronto crowds can be fickle, so the downtempo ones ("Set Me Free," "Danger Bay") aren't always performed. On the album, listeners can really appreciate the intricacies of good dance music: speed and freneticism are cool and all, but Green Go gives you a more varied workout.

Download: "You Know You Want It" (Borders, 2009).
Download: "Fool Me Once" (Borders, 2009).

Cleary, I'm a fan, and I'm thrilled the record so marvelously captures the qualities that impress me about the band's music. I last saw them at Sneaky Dee's a couple months back, and have been itching to get to their next show ever since. And now here's my chance. And yours.

To celebrate the long-anticipated release of their debut album, Borders, the band's playing next Thursday, 30 April, at Wrongbar. (This is the very venue Woodhands chose to release their album a year ago. Actually, I haven't been back since. But enough about me and Woodhands.) The party will go all night: in addition to Green Go, the bill features fellow Guelphites The Magic, Toronto synth-ers Everything All the Time, and the guys from OPOPO in the DJ booth. Stellar.

Courtesy No Shame I've got a pair of tickets to a show and a copy of the new CD to give away. For a chance at the prize, email me at historyjenATgmailDOTcom. Put "I want to dance with Green Go" in the subject line, and your full name in the body of the message. The winner will have to get him- or herself to the show, so Torontonians (at least for next Thursday night) only, please. Get your message to me by 11:59pm on Wednesday, 29 April. If you don't win, tickets at just $5 at the door.

Wee! Green Go!

Fine print: No Shame presents Green Go (CD release), The Magic, Everything All the Time, and OPOPO DJs @ Wrongbar, 9pm, $5. Facebook event.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Indie Music 77 (22-26 Apr 2009).

Like this list? Join my Google Group to get my weekly Toronto indie music listings. Or, the Facebook group. Subscribe to my weekly podcast (or download the episodes) here, or through iTunes. Or just listen to the latest one, and all the other ones, at Zygiella. Make sure to check the rest of this blog for show reviews and photos, giveaways, and downloads.

Welcome to my weekly roundup of inexpensive indie(ish) musical happenings in downtown Toronto, all for $10 or less. If I'm missing something you think I should list, or you have any comments, let me know. I star (*) shows that most interest me.

The weekly listings are shorter these weeks, as you may have noticed. I'm doing this out of a time-constraints, but it means a less intimidating list for most of you (and I know a less useful one for others). Anyways, change is good, right? And, in this case, necessary. So here goes. To make up for it, though, I've got some freebie music downloads mixed in with the listings. Enjoy!

Last week I caught Woodhands at the Phoenix. See my review for more on that show. On Sunday I heard some of Hamilton Trading Co.'s new album, and it sounds fantastic! I can't wait to get my hands (digital or actual) on the whole thing. After enjoying a bit of the Strumbella's set---a solid vocal- and string-heavy roots 7-piece band---I headed over to Rancho Relaxo where I was treated to the lovely Christina Maria, pop songstress Wendy Leung, a fantastic Boston band called The Main Drag, and the impressive debut of l'Affumer.

WEDNESDAY (22 apr)

PWYC Weds feat. Dancefloor Refraction, Thresh, and Higher Rites @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, pwyc.

Wednesday Go Pop! feat. Christina Maria, Dean Lickyer, and Chris Caddell @ Supermarket, 9pm, pwyc.

* Ronley Teper's Lipliners @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

(23 apr)

*Canaille and Bush League @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Punk 4 Parkinson's Fundraiser feat. Walk Off The Earth, Endprogram, The Burnitdowns, Corporation, and Final Thought @ The Boat, 9pm, $7.

* Words Around The Waist (acoustic), Hobson's Choice, and Jaron Freeman-Fox @ Mitzi's Sister, 9:30pm (start), $5.

TWM presents The Sideshow Tragedy , Little Foot Long Foot, and Blanc & White @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $7.

* Black Hat Brigade, Youth Group, and Bellewoods @ Lee’s Palace, 8:30pm, $8.

Download: Black Hat Brigade's “Zombie City Shake” (Fathers EP, 2009).

* Ridley Bent w/ Dustin Bentall, Mr. Rick & The Biscuits and Reuben DeGroot @ The Dakota Tavern, 9pm, $10.

FRIDAY (24 apr)

* The Oxford Hotel presents Jordan O'Jordan, Dave End, and Sarah D. @ The Oxford Hotel, 7:30pm, pwyc ($5).

Final Flammable Friday feat. International Turpentine, Edo Peled, and T.C. Folkpunk @ Renaissance Cafe, 9pm, pwyc.

The Soles @ Blue Moon Pub, 10pm.

* Ryan Driver Quartet @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

* Beth In Battle Mode, Clouds (that look like things), and The Hey Now @ The Silver Dollar Room, 9:30pm, $5.

Download: Beth in Battle Mode's “A Little-Known Fact” (Hot Science, 2009).

* TWM presents Leonids, Chang-a-Lang, Half Baked, Cedar @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $6.

* The Ghost Is Dancing (CD release), Still Life Still, and Europe in Colour @ Sneaky Dee’s, 9pm, $7. The new album is fantastic.

Download: The Ghost is Dancing's “Rogues & Heroes” (Battles On, 2009).

Ninja Gun, Mike Hale, Julia Set Generator, and Junior Battles @ El Mocambo (First Floor), 9pm, $8.

* The Rest (CD release), Ketch Harbour Wolves, and Amanda Zelina @ Tranzac (Main Hall), 7:30pm, $10. An extra $5 get you the new album.

Download: The Rest's “Sheep In Wolves’ Clothing” (Everyone All At Once, 2009).

Travis Porter & WeGotTheMovement.com present Today I Caught the Plague, Children of Eve, Beyond the Shadows, and Big City Skyline @ Holy Joe's, 8pm, $10.

Stuck in the City presents Naysayer, Backtrack, Bad Choice, and Get Wise @ Annies on Queen, 9pm, $10.

SATURDAY (25 apr)

Jay Clark & the Jones w/ Big City Hicks @ The Press Club, 9pm.

* Mantler, Sandro & Band @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10:30pm, pwyc.

Fourth Annual The New Grunge Unplugged feat. a whole lot of musicians @ The Cameron House, 9pm, $5 (or food donation to the Daily Bread Food Bank).

TWM presents Sandman Viper Command (CD release), The Antiqs, and Left of Zero @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $5.

* Boxes & Bags' 50th Show w/ John Milner You're So Boss, Swamp Sex Robots, and Ruzan Orkestar @ Neutral, 9pm, $5.

Late Night Live feat. Battery Point, Northwest Division, and The Little Pilgrims @ The Silver Dollar Room, 10:30pm, $5.

SUNDAY (26 apr)

* Wavelength 460 feat. T H O M A S, Univox Choral Ensemble, and The Skeletones Four, hosted by Doc Pickles, w/ visuals by General Chaos @ Sneaky Dee’s, 9pm, pwyc.

* Muskox and Jeremy Strachan (solo guitar) @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

* Cage the Elephant, Hollerado, and The Job @ El Mocambo (First Floor), 9pm, $8 (adv tix avail).

* Feuermusik @ Somewhere There, 6pm (early), $8.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Podcast 36 (22-26 Apr 2009).

Featuring Black Hat Brigade ("Zombie City Shake"), Beth In Battle Mode ("A Little-Known Fact"), The Ghost Is Dancing ("Battles On"), Emma-Lee ("Never Just A Dream"), and T H O M A S ("Feels Delight").

Listen at Zygiella
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Next week: Special musical guest(s)! Hint.

What do you think of the new intro style we've got?


For more great Canadian music, there's a new music-only (no talking!) podcast put together by the incredible Justin Beach, who runs the NxEW music blog, among many other projects. His first digital "mixtape" is now up, and the second one---with a whole lot of great tracks---will go up later this week. All the music is artist- and label-approved as free to enjoy and share with everyone, everywhere.

Slim Twig is offering up from free music, too, in advance of the release of his debut full-length, Contempt! The digital collection features unreleased songs as well as remixes of tracks from Contempt! For more info and the download link, see ST MySpace blog.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Ticket/CD Giveaway: Beth in Battle Mode @ Silver Dollar, 24 Apr.

For some reason it took me a long time to get around to seeing Beth In Battle Mode perform. Once I did, I kicked myself for not partying with them sooner! Their indie synth pop is just so catchy and danceable, and they've got stage presence and energy that match the songs perfectly. (Plus: attractive musicians!) The band has a new album out---Hot Science---and they're headlining a show this Friday, 24 April, at the Silver Dollar, a great spot for them. Opening are The Hey Now and Clouds (that look like things). It's been too many months since I last saw this band, and this bill also featuring two local acts I have yet to see (but have heard good things about) at a venue I rather like. That is pretty hard to beat. Here's to hoping I can persuade a few of you to join me at the show... with free tickets and some freebie downloads just to get you in the mood!

I got in touch with keyboardist / chief stage dancer Andrew Ennals to hear more about what the band is planning for Friday. He told me to expect "a song or two we haven't played in ages, in addition to the modern classics. Also [drummer] Dave [Gilgan] is going to wrestle a bear, provided we can get clearance from Parks Canada." Andrew will also take the opportunity the show affords "to lobby for the return of the big quart bottles they used to sell at the Silver Dollar." Sounds good to me. Live music + wildlife + consumer lobbying = recipe for a fantastic night.

Care of Beth in Battle Mode, I've got a pair of tickets and a copy of the new CD (Hot Science) to give away. To enter the draw for this BIBM prize-pack, send me a message at historyjenATgmailDOTcom with "BIBM / Hot Science" in the subject line. The deadline to enter is 11:59pm on Thursday, 23 April. I'll pick a random winner and let you know soon thereafter. If you don't win, you can still hit up the show. Tickets are $5 at the door.

Download: "A Little-Known Fact" (Hot Science, 2009).
Download: "No Feeling" (Technical Know-How, 2007).

Feeling like dancing yet? Check out the band's MySpace for more music.

Fine print: Beth In Battle Mode, Clouds (that look like things), and The Hey Now @ The Silver Dollar Room, 9:30pm, $5. The Facebook event is here.

UPDATE: I got a winner! Congrats to Tamara S. and thanks to all who entered.

Review: Woodhands @ The Phoenix; new Dancer EP.

Friday night I biked over to the Phoenix to see one of my favourite bands, Woodhands. As I told you last week, it had been a while since this duo played Toronto. That vocalist/keytarist/synth-ist Dan Werb and drummer/vocalist Paul Banwatt were playing the Phoenix this time around, a club with a capacity of over 1,000, was impressive, and I hoped they'd get a good crowd out. Well, they did, and I'm told there was lots of dancing, not just at the front (where I was) but in the middle and toward the back, too. I'm sure the band earned a whole lot of new fans that night. Lots of existing fans were out too. Everyone around me was singing along to "Dancer," "I Wasn't Made For Fighting," and other songs. (You can't see me in the above photo: Paul drumstick is blocking my face.)


(Sorry, I get excited when I think about this band.)

I missed the first performer-- solo act Golden Girls, who does 80s-inspired synth pop---but got there for for the start of Creature's set. This Montreal party band (for lack of a better description) played to an already-healthy crowd, and their kinda-funky, kinda-pop, kinda-rock set was filled with antics that the youngsters at the front ate up. It wasn't totally my thing, but the foursome certainly created a positive party atmosphere. Next up, after a long wait, was The Carps, a duo originally from Scarborough (so they said) consisting of a drummer/vocalist and a bassist/synth-ist. I was told later that they sounded a bit off their game, and man I hope so because I did not get it at all. It was just weird, and not in a good way. Ah well. They seemed to have a good following, though, so ... well, I guess it's just not for me.

Woodhands took the stage at around ten to 1am. It was worth the wait. They played extended versions of many of the tracks of their full-length, the awesome Heart Attack (Paperbag, 2008), one new songs, plus their cover of "Electric Avenue." Brilliant! It took a few minutes for me to really get in the mood, but once I was warmed up, the band had me jumping up and down like a fool like most people around me. No crowd surfing (that I noticed) this time. Just a sweat-soaked dance party like only Woodhands knows how to host. After closing out with "Dancer," featuring vocalist Maylee Todd, who sang the song on the record, but who rarely joins the band on stage these days, there was a two-song encore. Gentleman Reg sang a great version of "Sailboats," my favourite track off the album. The show's promoter, the night's DJs, Maylee, and some of the band's friends---as well as a couple photographers who put down their cameras---were doing the same crazy dancing at the back and sides of the stage that those of us in the audience were doing. Wow. What a great set.

[Photo Credit: Garry Tsaconas. Click on the photo to see the original and Garry's other shots from that night.]


I've got one more bit of Woodhands news to tell you about: their Dancer EP, released back in February. It's a collection of reworkings by other artists of "Dancer," plus a couple different Woodhands's versions of that song. Available in digital form only, there are 7 tracks:

1. "Dancer (Extended Mix)"
2. "Dancer (Bit Funk Remix)"
3. "Dancer (DJ Rexford Mix)"
4. "Dancer (Feat. Reeseman Kackalak)"
5. "Dancer (Soundsmith Remix)"
6. "Dancer (CFCF Remix)"
7. "Dancer (Instrumental)"

The vibes represented are pretty diverse here. The extended version of "Dancer" gives you a much better sense of Woodhands's live show than the record. This is the song that the duo tends to end with, and I've seen they play it for 20 minutes. Extended jams are one of the best elements of Woodhands in concert. The Bit Funk remix is my favourite of re-done track. It takes an already great dance song and changes it up a bit, replacing the freneticism of the original with a solid dance track that could be a staple of the club scene. Hip hop fans will dig Philly MC Reeseman Kackalak's take on the song's subject. The Soundsmith remix struck me a bit odd at first, but after a few listens I think it's an interesting dance track with a couple different moods that showcases how good the original song really is. Woodhands's labelmates CFCF offer up a happier tone, like a more peppy, chill Woodhands, but still eminently danceable. Woodhands's fans and DJs/dance party hosts will want these reworkings.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Saturday is Record Store Day.

I've got some things listed in this week's listings, but here's a full description of what's going down this Saturday for Record Store Day at a few independent music shops in Toronto.

Podcast 35 (15-19 Apr 2009).

On this episode, Jen and Tyler welcome Rancho Relaxo's talent booker, Dan Wolovick, to the podcast. Featuring songs of Dan's choosing (and a couple others) including B'MO Crazy ("Baristro"), BBQ / Mark Sultan ("Hold On"), Burn Planetarium ("Young Chameleons"), The Sound of Sea Animals ("Act 17, Chapter 2 Almost 3"), Snowblink ("Rut and Nuzzle"), and The Main Drag ("Love During Wartime").

This weekend Dan's celebrating his 2 year anniversary of putting on shows. Congrats to Dan and his Two Way Monologues series.

The Snowblink song comes from a charity compilation project called Hibiscus & Rosehips.

Listen at Zygiella
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Indie Music 76 (15-19 Apr 2009).

Like this list? Join my Google Group to get my weekly Toronto indie music listings. Or, the Facebook group. Subscribe to my weekly podcast (or download the episodes) here, or through iTunes. Or just listen to the latest one, and all the other ones, at Zygiella. Make sure to check the rest of this blog for show reviews and photos, giveaways, and downloads.

Welcome to my weekly roundup of inexpensive indie(ish) musical happenings in downtown Toronto, all for $10 or less. I try to list as many shows here as I know about, though this list is not comprehensive. If I'm missing something or you have any comments, let me know.

I'm going to have to make a few changes to the text above. You may have noticed that my listings have gotten shorter over the past few weeks. I'm not able to devote the time compiling these things that I used to. I think this is sad, but I've had a good run, and so although I still want to put out some suggestions each week, I will miss things. If you have a show you want me to list, definitely send me the details so I can be sure to include them. And, as always, I'll accept music for podcast play.

Last week I only got out to one show, but it was a good one: Megan Hamilton & the Volunteer Canola's CD release at the Rivoli, which also featured Olenka & the Autumn Lovers. The din from the chatty crowd was distracting during Olenka's set, unfortunately, but Megan et al. rocked things up, playing the new record from start to finish, and closing off with an older tune for the encore. I nice night; I only wish the noise from the bar didn't travel so easily to the stage. Ah well.

Here's what I'll be choosing from this week. Scroll down to find a few downloads thrown in:

WEDNESDAY (15 apr)

Ben Spencer, Bramwell Park, and Sarah Burton @ Graffiti’s Bar & Grill, 9pm, pwyc.

PWYC Weds feat. The Shotgun Wedding Band, The Wilderness of Manitoba, and The Magnificent Sevens @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, pwyc.

Andrew Hunter @ 11:40, Stone River @ 10:50, Peaceful Soldier @ 10:00, and Chris Gauthier & The Wolves @ 9:10. The Horseshoe Tavern, 8:30pm, $4.

Stuck In the City presents Braindead, Black Birds, Molested Youth, and Death Adders @ Siesta Nouveaux, 7-11pm, $8.

THURSDAY (16 apr)

Manitoba Music feat. Oldfolks Home, The Details, and Tele @ The Rivoli, 8pm, free.

The DoneFors w/ Nick Zubeck @ Not My Dog, 10pm, pwyc.

Hopeful Monster w/ Larry Thomas @ The Local, 9pm, pwyc.

Broken Tree Fort fundraiser show feat. Slim Twig, Broken Tree Fort, Wet Dirt, and Trudy Poot @ The Boat, 9pm, $5.

Download: "Young Hussies," the new single off Slim Twig's forthcoming full-length, Contempt! (2009).

TWM presents B’MO Crazy (album release), Ninja Funk Orchestra, Sounds Like BS, Hush Money, and hosted by Anna Sudac @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $5.

Horses, The Little Millionaires, B.A. Johnston, and Hijack Delta @ Sneaky Dee’s, 9pm, $7.

The Framework, Senor Kasio, and Afterparty @ Tattoo Rock Parlour, 9pm, $10.

Awesome New Republic, Styrofoam Ones, Dawn of Humans, and Sam Bradley @ The Drake Hotel (Underground), 9pm, $10.

DD/MM/YYYY (record release) w/ Metz and Black Feelings @ Lee’s Palace, 8:30pm, $10. (Admission includes a copy of the new album, Black Square.)

Download: "Infinity Skull Cube" (DD/MM/YYYY, Black Square, 2009).

FRIDAY (17 apr)

At Odds With Even, Kosher Dill Spears, and The Stepfathers @ The Imperial Pub, 9pm, pwyc.

Tommy and the Tall Girls, Anna Sudac, Bitter City, and Errand Boy @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

The Pack A.D., The Speaking Tongues, and Orangutan, @ The Drake Hotel (Underground), 8-11pm, $5.

Download: "Bang" from The Pack A.D.'s Tintype (2008). This is a brilliant song.

Thee Diet Pills, Lunchmeat, Terror Lake, and Plastics Inc @ The Silver Dollar, 9pm, $5.

Pop Noir (dance party) w/ Uncut @ The Boat, 10pm, $5.

Catl and Bradley Boy (2 sets each, alternating) @ The Dakota Tavern, 10pm, $5.

Saddle Up! (dance party, 2nd yr anniversary) @ Canadian Corps Hall (201 Niagara St.), 10:30pm, $5.

Natasha Watermam (CD release) W/ Dane Hartsell, The Rosewoods, and Mandippal @ The Rivoli, 8:30pm, $8.

BBQ (aka Mark Sultan), Box Elders, Pirate/Rock, and City Sweethearts @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $10.

Woodhands w/ The Carps, Creature, Golden Girls, and Famous Players @ The Phoenix, 8pm, $10. Win tickets to this show and grab free music.

SATURDAY (18 apr)

Record Store Day feat. Slim Twig, Lullabye Arkestra, Sunparlour Players, Gentleman Reg, Green Go, Hooded Fang, Steamboat, Little Girls, and DJ Shit La Merde @ Sonic Boom, 4-9pm, free. Bring a donation to the Daily Bread Food Bank.

Record Store Day feat. Great Bloomers (7pm) and Chris Eaton (from Rock Plaza Central, 6pm) @ Criminal Records, free.

Record Store Day feat. Josh Reichmann / Oracle Band and others @ Sunrise Records (336 Yonge St.), free.

Terror Lake, Deaglan, and Husbands @ The Press Club, 9pm.

Octoberman, Sister, and Samir Khan @ Tranzac (Southern Cross Lounge), 10pm, pwyc.

Vitaminsforyou (CD release) w/ Stop Die Resuscitate, and Politique @ The Drake Hotel (Underground), 8-11pm, $5. Followed by Lipstick, Cherry (dance party).

Download: Vitaminsforyou, “B4U (Stop Die Resuscitate remix)". V4U is playing with a full band these days, and they're just back from tour.

Hold a Grudge, Eating Glass, Bad Choice, and Molested Youth @ 751, 9pm, $5.

The Sound of Sea Animals, Dinosaur Bones, and Broken Bricks @ Canadian Corps Hall (201 Niagara St.), 9pm, $5.

Base War 16 feat. Times Neue Roman, Alias, Geoff Snack, Errol, and DVSN @ Z (812 Dundas St. W), 10pm, $7 (or $5 each for groups of three of more).

No Official Capacity presents Monarque, Csejthe, and Adversarial @ The Annex WreckRoom, 7-10pm, $8.

TWM 39 (and 2nd year anniversary) feat. La Casa Muerte, The Love Machine, Whale Tooth, and Burn Planetarium @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $7.

Download: Whale Tooth's "Hibernation Song" (Whale Tooth, 2009).

Late Night Live feat. Electrick Empire w/ Commandeers and Dolls @ The Silver Dollar, 10:30pm, $6.

Friendly Rich & the Lollipop People w/ Mary Milne @ Tranzac (Main Hall), 8pm, $12 (or $10 adv).

SUNDAY (19 apr)

Hibiscus & Rosehips Tea Party Fundraiser / CD release feat. Owl Eyes, Erin Lang, Snowblink, Luxury Pond, The Youngest, and Jesse Smith @ The Resistor Gallery (284 College Street, 2nd floor), 1–6pm, $8. All ages. Free for kids. There will be a arts, crafts, and a bake sale, in support of The Hibiscus Fund for Hope, a lymphoma cancer charity. For more information on this project, check the website. The album is fantastic.

Hamilton Trading Co., The Strumbellas, and HTC album listening party @ The Boat, 9pm, pwyc.

L’Affumer, The Main Drag, Wendy Leung, and Christina Maria @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $6.

Wavelength 459 feat. New Feelings, Flowers of Hell, and Snowblink, hosted by Doc Pickles, w/ visuals by General Chaos @ Sneaky Dee’s, 9pm, pwyc.

Marcel Aucoin and Michael Holt present the Piano Salon feat. Kristin Mueller-Heaslip (music), Anya Yushchenko (talk), and The Scott Marshall Jazz Trio @ 85 Armstrong Ave., 7pm, pwyc. Feel free to bring food and drink to share.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Ticket Giveaway: Woodhands @ The Phoenix, 17 Apr 2009.

My favourite pairing, Woodhands, is back in Toronto, headlining a show this Friday at the Phoenix (!). Paul Banwatt and Dan Werb haven't given Toronto too much love since their sold-out CD release show last spring at Wrongbar. But after playing a whole lot of shows elsewhere in Canada, south of the border, and in Asia, it's about time they headline again in the town of their founding.

The last time I saw Woodhands was during Pop Montreal in early October. The show featured some crazy crowd surfing, guest vocalist Aleks (from Chicago band Aleks & the Drummer), and freestyling courtesy LA's rap duo The Knux. The last time they played Toronto they opened for Cadence Weapon, who joined them on-stage during their set. Back in August they brought out a lazer as part of their live show. Paul's been known to join The D'Urbervilles for some live guest rapping . . . my point? I wonder what tricks these guys have up their sleeves for us this time.

Courtesy The MuseBox, I've got a pair of tickets for Friday's Toronto show to give away to one lucky reader. For a chance to win, e-mail me at historyjenATgmailDOTcom. Put "Woodhands" in the subject line and your full name in the body of the message. Deadline to enter is noon on Thursday, 16 Apr. I'll let you know soon thereafter if you're the winner. If you don't win, tickets are $10, and also get you in to see The Carps, Creature, Golden Girls, and DJs Famous Players. Doors are at 8pm; the Phoenix is at 410 Sherbourne St.

To get you in the dancing mood, here are a few tracks: two originals and one cover. I'll have more on Woodhands later this week. I'll see you at the show, right?

Download: "Dancer (extended)" (Dancer EP, 2009).
Download: "Can't See Straight" (Heart Attack, 2008).
Download: "Electric Avenue" (Woodhands remix).

Here's the music video for "I Wasn't Made For Fighting":

UPDATE: Got a winner! Thanks to all who entered.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Indie Music 75 (7-12 Apr 2009).

Like this list? Join my Google Group to get my weekly Toronto indie music listings. Or, the Facebook group. Subscribe to my weekly podcast (or download the episodes) here, or through iTunes. Or just listen to the latest one, and all the other ones, at Zygiella. Make sure to check the rest of this blog for show reviews and photos, giveaways, and downloads.

Welcome to my weekly roundup of inexpensive indie(ish) musical happenings in downtown Toronto, all for $10 or less. I try to list as many shows here as I know about, though this list is not comprehensive. If I'm missing something or you have any comments, let me know.

I had a great week of show-going: The Burning Hell, FemBots, and Wax Mannequin @ The Horseshoe last Thursday; Casey Mecija (from Ohbijou) and Chriss Sutherland @ Tranzac last Friday; The Whitsundays @ Sneaky Dee's last Friday; and Julie Doiron, Meligrove Band, and Sports: The Band @ The Ford Plant in Brantford last Saturday.

Just a few suggestions this week:


Thunderheist (in-store) @ Sonic Boom, 7pm, free (but please bring a donation to the Daily Bread Food Bank). All ages.

PWYC Weds feat. Slow Down Molasses, Before the Flood, and Debbie Suede @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, pwyc.


Wrongbar Holiday Weekend Party feat. Foxfire (live), Alixander III & Dirty 30, Jaime Sin, Dinamo Azari, Produzentin, and others @ Wrongbar, 9pm, $5.

The Miles (CD release), Sadie May Crash, The Craft Economy, and Broken Bricks @ The Horseshoe, 8:30pm, $6.

Megan Hamilton & the Volunteer Canola (CD release) w/ Olenka & the Autumn Lovers and Kathleen Phillips @ The Rivoli, 8:30pm, $7.

We Are Busy Bodies & Travis Porter present Crippled Black Phoenix, The Ascent of Everest, Siberia, and Lifestory:Monologue @ Sneake Dee's, 9pm, $10 (adv tix avail.).

Lickpenny Loafer (2 extended acoustic sets) @ The Cameron House, 9:30pm (start), $10 (includes free CD). All proceeds to the Crohns Colitis Foundation of Canada.

The Sadies @ The Dakota Tavern, 9pm, $15. (Tickets at the door... go early and join the lineup!)

FRIDAY (10 Apr)

The Hots (acoustic) @ Bread & Circus, 9:30pm, $5.

Mean Red Spiders, Husband & Knife, PacificTV, and Rat Tail @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm, $5.

Honest I's (EP release) w/ Mina May, Videotape, and LAN Party @ Cinecycle, 9pm, $5 (or $8 will get you the CD too). The band promises "cheap PBR and free apples."

First Person Shooter, The Get Down Sound, Corduroy, and Hue @ Lee's Palace, 9pm, $6.

Honky Night in Canada III feat. Drunk Woman (members of Lunchmeat, Make Me Young, and others), Dwight Schenk, The Mark Inside, and The Hunting Horns @ The Silver Dollar Room, 9pm, $6. Performing "The Flying Burrito Brothers' The Gilded Palace of Sin in it's entirety along with other country classics."

TWM 38 feat. Azeda Booth, Braxton Clover, Sound & Structure, and Saskatoon Guitar Destroyer @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $7.

Nevado Records presents The Paint Movement (CD release) w/ Fox Jaws, Make Your Exit, and Provincial Parks @ The Rivoli, 8:30pm, $8.

Jordaan Mason & the Horse Museum (CD fundraiser show) w/ Sarah D., Okay Guard & the Whatever Jailer Choir @ The Oxford Hotel (117 Oxford St.), 7pm, $10 (to reserve a CD).


TWM presents Rep By Pop, The Racoon Wedding, and Your Volunteer (CD release), 9pm, $6.

Holly Andruchuk & the Elliot Brothers (CD release), Luke Sneyd & the Deed (EP release), Bernadette & the North, and Chasing Arcadia @ Lee's Palace, 9pm, $7.

Nightbringer, Burning Love, Curx of Aux, Bastard Child Death Cult, The Endless Blockade, and Vile Intent @ 751 Queen W., 9pm, $8.

SUNDAY (12 Apr)

Wavelength 458 feat. Olenka & the Autumn Lovers, The Thing Is, and Tight Ship, w/ visuals by General Chaos and hosted by Doc Pickles @ Sneaky Dee's, 9pm, pwyc/$5.

Late Night Live feat. The Job, Dead Sexy Sheila, and tba @ The Silver Dollar Room, 10:30pm, $5.

TWM presents The Bronzed Chorus, The Cast, Sleep for the Nightlife, and The Weathermaking Challenge @ Rancho Relaxo, 9pm, $6.

Mike Smith/Jeremy Strachan @ Somewhere There, 6-8pm, $8.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Podcast 34 (8-12 Apr 2009).

The CD release episode! Featuring bands that are celebrating new disks this week, including The Miles ("Murder"), Megan Hamilton & the Volunteer Canola ("Cat Tail Legs"), Honest I's ("Wristwatches"), The Paint Movement ("Faults"), Luke Sneyd & the Deed ("Fightsong"), and Your Volunteer ("Oh Sweetheart").

Six local bands! Six new albums! Six good shows! Six songs you've never heard before (probably)!

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Pitter Patter Festival lineup announced.

This is a short note to say that the lineup for the Pitter Patter Music Festival (28-31 May) is up on this website. There are shows in 9 Ontario cities, from Belleville and Brantford to Lindsay and London. Most of the venues hosting the festival are in Toronto, including all the regular live music spaces in Kensington Market. Some stellar bands are playing, as well as a whole lot of bands that have yet to make it onto my radar. And this is exactly the point of the festival: a pay-what-you-can affair that prides itself on helping young bands get exposure in the big city and elsewhere. The whole thing is carefully curated---and the bands chosen based musical merit---so that shows makes sense as whole experiences.

Here are some of the bands confirmed (in alphabetical order): Brent Randall & his Pinecones, The Darcys, The Diableros, Dog Day, Flotilla, Great Bloomers, Jordaan Mason & the Horse Museum, The Kettle Black, Llions, The Miles, OPOPO, The Owle Bird, Parlovr, Pick A Piper, The Racoon Wedding, The Speaking Tongues, Spiral Beach, The Vulcan Dub Squad, and Whale Tooth. Plus so many more! Great stuff.

I'm excited to see how the Toronto shows shape up!

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Ticket/CD Giveaway: Megan Hamilton & the Volunteer Canola @ The Rivoli, 9 Apr.

Local songstress Megan Hamilton has a lovely new album out with her backing band, the Volunteer Canola, and here's your chance to get in on the celebration---for free! See Your Midnight Breath in the Shipyard is a little bit rock, a little bit weird folk, and a little bit whimsical, with a touch of psychedelia thrown in. Megan's voice is a big part of her sound on this and her previous albums (Feudal Ladies Club, 2006; How We Think About Light, 2007). It's pretty great. Just trust me on this one. Or, download the track below and check out Megan's website and MySpace for more.

Download: "Figure It Out" off See Your Midnight Breath in the Shipyard (2009).

Hmm, I totally want to give you other tracks to download. But that's not fair. Come to the show! Buy the record!

The CD release show is this Thursday at the Rivoli in Toronto. Openers are the fantastic Olenka & the Autumn Lovers, and local comedienne extraordinaire, Kathleen Phillips. Should make for a great evening full of laughter, love, and rocking out.

Download: "Flash In the Pan" by Olenka & the Autumn Lovers (Papillonette, 2008).

Thanks to Audio Blood Media, I've got two fancy prize-packs to give to lucky readers. Each prize consists of two tickets to the show and a copy of the new album. To enter for a chance to win, e-mail me at historyjenATgmailDOTcom. The subject line should read "Megan Hamilton" and include your full name in the body of the message. (That way we know the name to put on the guestlist with a +1.) The deadline to enter is Wednesday, 8 April at 11:59pm. I'll announce the winners soon thereafter. If you don't win, you can still go to the show. Tickets are available at the door (8:30pm, $7), and you can pick up the CD for $10.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Podcast 33 (1-5 Apr 2009).

Featuring Gravity Wave ("Mobilize [The Pink Tide (My Baby And Me)]"), Canaille ("Francophonie"), The Burning Hell ("Old World"), In-Flight Safety ("Actors"), The Whitsundays ("It Must Be Me"), and Meligrove Band ("Ages & Stages").

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Have a listen, and let me know what you think!