Entries tagged with: Misteur Valaire
photos by Amanda Hatfield; words by Bill Pearis
YT//ST / Foxxtrott @ Arlene's Grocery 10/29/2013
The 2013 M for Montreal happens at various clubs across its namesake city from November 20 - 23. Like last year, in addition to it's industry conference/showcase side earlier in the week, the Friday and Saturday shows are part of M Fest which like a smaller scale CMJ or Pop Montreal with over 75 bands playing over those two days. This year's bands include Mac DeMarco, Born Ruffians, The Dears' Murray Lightburn, Thundercat, Thus:Owls, Laura Mvula, Young Galaxy, Pat Jordache, A Wilhelm Scream, Grand Analog, High Dials, Damien Robitaille, The Damn Truth, Kandle and more.
After partnering with the M folks at CMJ, SXSW and other festivals, BrooklynVegan will be co-presenting (with CMJ) our first show at the actual M for Montreal with We Are Wolves, Duchess Says (who've played M/BV shows at CMJ and SXSW) and Solids (who we've written about) at Cabaret Underworld on November 22. This will be the first time in ages that We Are Wolves and Duchess Says shared a bill together in Montreal. Tickets are on sale now, and the poster for that show is below.
You can check out the full M for Montreal line-up below and tickets for some of the other shows are on sale too. We'll be there the whole week so look for coverage then.
Some of the artists playing this year's fest were down for CMJ a couple weeks ago, playing the official M for Montreal showcase which happened at Arlene's Grocery on October 18. Our photographer was there for Yamantaka // Sonic Titan (who played our party earlier in the day), and A K U A, plus Kandle (who played last year's M) and Foxtrott (who we've written about), both of whom will play M for Montreal. Pictures from their sets are in this post. Later in the night there were sets from Pat Jordache and related soft rock project CAMP, and others.
Full list of M for Montreal 2013 peformers, the flyer for the BV presented show, and more pics from the M4M CMJ showcase, below...
Osheaga Festival is returning to Montreal's Parc Jean-Drapeau from August 2-4. This year's lineup includes The Cure, Mumford and Sons, Phoenix, New Order, Vampire Weekend, Kendrick Lamar, Hot Chip, Alt-J, Beach House, Explosions in the Sky, Big Boi, Baauer, Father John Misty, Disclosure, Frightened Rabbit, Angel Haze, Jessie Ware, DIIV, Guards, and many more.
3-Day passes go on sale Friday (3/15) at noon. There are still over 20 artists TBA, but you can browse the complete initial lineup below...
By Bill Pearis
Half Moon Run
As an "international delegate" at M for Montreal, by Friday you start to get a little worn out. Your day is booked with meet-ups, panels, something called "speed schmoozing" and loads of bands. Most of it's fun or interesting but I went to sneak a catnap on Friday afternoon and ended up sleeping through one whole showcase. (Sorry, I.No and Bobby Bazini.)
But there was a lot of good in what I did see, including what most agreed was the best new band of the week, Half Moon Run. The Montreal trio match songwriting (and harmonies) of '60s folk rock with the atmospherics of Radiohead. A little too like Radiohead occasionally, but for the most part Half Moon Run had found their own way. I was instantly impressed but it took me a day to get their name right: I tweeted praise for something called Full Moon Circle, which I later realized was partially from one of their songs "Full Circle." (That song and another are streaming at the bottom of this post.) Maybe the name's not so memorable but their music sure was.
Buddy McNeil and the Magic Mirrors
The afternoon show Half Moon Run were part of also featured Buddy McNeil and the Magic Mirrors, punchy twang-n-roll dressed in Nautical outfits; Toronto four-piece The Midway State who make commercial-sounding alt-rock (clearly talented but definitely MOR); and the widescreen roar that was Passwords, who all the Brit journalists in attendance seemed to go gaga for.
After the unplanned three-hour konk-out and some much-needed dinner it was off to La Sala Rossa again for the official evening showcase, which was co-presented by CMJ. Hollerado headlined the show and are a lot of fun. And know their way around a giant hooks, the kind that would've made them hugely popular in the mid-'90s. Songs like "Americanarama" and "Juliette" (from their debut Record in a Bag) would've fit perfectly in between "Seether" and "Sucked Out" on a mixtape. As it is, Hollerado are merely Very Popular in Canada and fans are vocal and rowdy in a good-natured way. The band encourage it with confetti cannons, glowing beach balls and a cover of "Fat Bottom Girls." They also had awesome t-shirts at the merch table co-opting the Wu-Tang Clan logo and the Heisenberg sketch the Cousins pray to in Breaking Bad.
The showcase also had Parlovr on the bill who I've seen a handful of times over the last three years and have become a really solid live band. There's a lot of flying hair and the drummer is crazy tall with long arms flying the whole time. I'm not sure they have yet to write a song as catchy as "Heaven/Hell" which opens their set. If they have, they're not playing it yet.
Uncle Bad Touch
Also on the La Sala Rossa bill: Montreal's Uncle Bad Touch who recently signed to JEFF the Brotherhood's Infinity Cat label and that probably tells you a lot about their sound. (Riffy, sneery, Nuggets-y party rock.) For those in NYC, Uncle Bad Touch play Death By Audio on November 29.
We also got duo TONSSTARTBANDHT who started off Animal Collectively but became progressively more prone to dissonance. I still don't know how to pronounce their name.
Like the previous night, they had us running across the street to Casa Del Popolo to see more bands. Toronto's Doldrums (aka Alrick Woodhead) was wonderfully ADD, twiddling knobs, hammering sample triggers and pacing around the stage. Too many ideas crammed into one 20-minute set? Maybe, but it was exciting seeing talent that is only just now beginning to show its potential.
The other band at Casa Del Popolo was Candian/Swedish combo Thus:Owls, the only band of the week to use a colon in their name. The band stay busy in Montreal, backing Patrick Watson and Marie Pierre Arthur (who would play the next night). Here, fronted by harpsichord-wielding Erika Angell, they are delicate and stirring and swoony. Angell's got some pipes.
After the Salla Rosa show, we headed over to the late-night after party at Club Soda, one of Montreal's many amazing venues. (Seriously, no city I've visited has more clubs with great sound, great lighting and intelligent layout as Montreal.) I walked in about three songs into Plaster's set which was pretty great. Squelchy and banging, they do live dance music right. If there was a little more flow in their set, they'd give Soulwax a run for their money.
Next was Misteur Valaire who some of you may have seen at one of our day parties during SXSW this year. Seeing them on their home turf, however, is something else. Montreal loves Misteur Valaire who, like a lot of groups genuinely popular with the locals, come with a thick slice of fromage coating everything they do. They definitely put on a show, complete with costume changes. Hipster nerd Franco-Canadian boy band who have serious musical chops applied totally in the pursuit of a good time. The crowd was going mental for the entire set, which didn't finish till 2AM.
At that point I was finished and left before Bran Van 3000 started, choosing instead sweet sleep.
Click through for a few more pictures from Friday's showcases, plus the Half Moon Run streaming player and some video of Hollerado and TONSTARTSSBANDHT in action.
by Bill Pearis
As I mentioned briefly yesterday, I'm heading out to the M for Montreal festival which happens tonight through Saturday (11/16 - 19). This is the 6th Edition of the fest, and the fourth that I've attended. Once a showcase for up-and-coming Montreal bands that the festival organizers deemed "export-ready" and that took place primarily at one club (the two-stage Juste Pour Rire), M4M has expanded to include other parts of Canada in the last few years.
Juste Pour Rire closed shortly after last year's festival, so this year has expanded to other venues while also widening in scope. They've partnered with other international festivals (Osheaga, CMJ, SXSW) and have more bands than ever (including a few not from Canada). Bands this year include M83, Karkwa, The Barr Brothers, Active Child, Bran Van 3000 (remember "Drinking in L.A."?), CLAASS, Misteur Valaire, Anoraak, Random Recipe and the debut of Absolutely Free, the new band from 4/5s of DD/MM/YYYY. Full line-up is here.
In total there's nearly 60 bands playing, which might not seem like a crazy amount for a festival. But M for Montreal is designed with little to no overlap, so if you attend the whole thing you see all the bands. It's going to be a busy week. Look for more coverage (including my lovely point-and-shoot photography) coming later this week.
Adventure (by Tim)
Braids (by Tim)
As discussed and/or pictured HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, and HERE, we threw a free, three stage party with M For Montreal at Swan Dive and Barbarella in Austin on Saturday, March 19, 2011.
Thanks to everyone who stopped by, to all the bands who played and to Ramesh for DJing. Sorry to Bass Drum of Death for not getting to play due to some confusion. Thanks to the cast of Workaholics for stopping by and for doing some hosting (catch their show on Comedy Central now!). Thanks also to Izzoz, Sensible Portions, Honest Tea, VegAustin, Raw Revolution, NadaMoo, Firefly Vodka, Line 6, Korg, Vox, Blackstar, Nudie Jeans, and ASCAP. Thanks to everyone else that helped and to anyone I forgot.
A whole bunch more pictures from the whole day are below...
words & photos by Chris Gersbeck
!!! @ the BrooklynVegan/MFM Day Party Saturday
By the time Saturday rolled around in Austin, I was admittedly starting to tire of the massive crowd that had been occupying 6th Street since I arrived on Tuesday. That didn't stop me from hitting up as much live music as I could in that final day though. Thanks to an insane amount of free day parties, this was a relatively easy task, albeit an exhausting one.
To start things off, Jonny Corndawg (who has a Brooklyn Bowl residency coming up) was playing a Fiji Water-sponsored, artist-only brunch in the upstairs of Barbarella where the BrooklynVegan/M For Montreal Day party was happpening downstairs (with !!!, Trail of Dead & more). Though I've seen Corndawg several times before, it goes without saying that he's an entertaining performer/songwriter, and his intimate set was well received by the early morning brunch-eating fans.
After that I jetted downstairs to the outside Barbarella stage to catch one of the weirder performances I'd seen all week. Misteur Valaire, a five piece Canadian dance-punk outfit energetically jumped around stage, switching instruments on nearly every song, and often breaking out into choreographed dance sequences. To say it was odd is an understatement, but nonetheless I had a smile on my face the entire time. It was also a great way to embrace us for the crazy dance party that ensued when !!! (chk-chk-chk) took the stage next.
Nic Offer, easily the greatest short-shorts wearing frontman in indie rock, made no hesitation in getting the increasingly packed outdoor crowd dancing for !!!'s set. Though he did express his dismay of there being a couch on the dance floor (yes, for some reason there was a couch in the middle of the dance floor), Offer used it as a prop to jump into the middle of the crowd several times. And their tribute to the late Nate Dogg, a cover of "Get Up", was a great way to conclude their set.
Up next on the Barbarella outdoor stage was Austin's own Trail of Dead, who initially suffered from sound/equipment problems, but eventually got it together to play a pulverizing set to the still packed outdoor stage. Though short in length, it was in no way short on enthusiasm, and Trail of Dead blasted through their set as they flung themselves around on stage. Bassist Autry Fulbright III even broke a bass string towards the end of their ecstatic concluding song, a feat I've rarely seen accomplished.
After an ill-fated trip to the free Mess With Texas party where I hoped to catch the Dead Milkmen and Odd Future (the location was so dusty and packed it was unbearable), I was able to make it into the official Red Ryder SXSW showcase at the Central Presbyterian Church on 8th Street in time to witness a jaw dropping performance from Sharon Van Etten.
Sharon Van Etten @ the Red Ryder SXSW showcase
Van Etten was one of the more talked about performers of the entire SXSW festival, and I couldn't have been happier to catch her set after missing her at the BrooklynVegan showcase earlier in the week. The church made for absolutely breathtaking acoustics. Members of Wye Oak and TV on the Radio's Kyp Malone watched from the balcony. I cannot stress it enough, do not miss her upcoming show at the Music Hall of Williamsburg on April 16th.
Portland, Oregon super-sized group Typhoon followed Sharon Van Etten, and though that may have been the problem, it was also a reminder that often less is more. Not to say they didn't put on a heartfelt performance, or that the massive church setting wasn't perfect for their big, full sound, but their enthusiasm at times came off as a bit much. Though if you're a fan of the Polyphonic Spree or We're From Barcelona, Typhoon is likely right up your alley.
After catching them at the Bowery Ballroom the week prior, I was definitely excited to see the Rural Alberta Advantage again. They didn't disappoint. Stating that they played the same venue at SXSW in 2009, keyboardist Amy Cole expressed a slight feeling of déjà vu, but said they were happy to be performing in such a space for a second time. What was apparently a repeat of that '09 performance, the band returned for an encore of a stripped down performance of their song "Good Night" surrounded by the crowd, completely un-mic'd and unplugged. It was an entrancing and honest moment from the Canadian band, and a perfect way to end a long, long week of live music where I also caught sets by The Kills and Atlas Sound.
Pictures from everything mentioned above, below...
If you've been following along, you know that this is finally the NINTH and FINAL BrooklynVegan SXSW 2011 show announcement! This one happens on Saturday, March 19th in Austin, at both Swan Dive and Barbarella (they connect). It runs from noon-6pm and is 100% free. We are doing it with our friends from M For Montreal and it looks like this:
STAGE 1 (SWAN DIVE)I'm ready to fall over.
12:00 PM New Moods
01:00 PM Oh Land
2:00 PM Austra
3:00 PM Little Scream
4:00 PM Owen Pallett
5:00 PM Braids
STAGE 2 (Barbarella main stage)
12:00 PM Baths
1:00 PM Misteur Valaire
2:00 PM !!!
3:00 PM Trail of Dead
4:00 PM Mount Kimbie
5:00 PM Daedelus
HOSTED BY: the cast of Workaholics
DJs: Ramesh (of Voxtrot) & 70's Bush
STAGE 3 (Barbarella small stage)
12:00 PM Bass Drum of Death
12:45 PM Adventure
1:30 PM Versus
2:30 PM Malajube
3:15 PM Suuns
4:00 PM Weekend
5:00 PM PS I Love You
And this party will also have:
- FREE vegan Izzoz breakfast tacos while supplies last!
- lots of FREE snacks courtesy of Sensible Portions!
- a lot of FREE Honest Tea!
- FREE Raw Revolution bars to eat.
- FREE vegan ice cream from NadaMoo
- FREE Firefly Vodka cocktails all day (while supplies last.)
- more FREE DRINKS TBA.
- Our official microphone sponsor Line 6.
- and our backline sponsors Korg, Vox & Blackstar.
- our sponsor Nudie Jeans.
- and to ASCAP for sponsoring too.
To celebrate the BrooklynVegan + M for Montreal party, Nudie Jeans is also giving away 5 pairs of jeans (one pair for each day leading up to the party). For your chance to win, friend Nudie Jeans on facebook and send an email titled BROOKLYN VEGAN to firstname.lastname@example.org. For those at the party, we'll also be raffling off more Nudie Jeans you can win while you're there.
We're also happy to announce that, for the second year in a row, we'll be partnering with our friends at VegAustin to host a vegan bake sale for charity at the party. All proceeds will be donated to Compassion Over Killing.
Check out the flyer and stuff below...
DOWNLOAD: Jesuslesfilles - Fous Le Camp (MP3)
The final day of M for Montreal had two showcases, both of which seemed programmed more to locals more than the "international delegates" like myself. Mainly because much of it was en Français.
First up was an all-Francophone afternoon. This might sound like drag to some, but I see it as a window to a world most Americans don't really know exists. And while a lot of it is heavy on the fromage, there's always a discovery to be made here. The only band that seems likely to make a dent below the border was Jesuslesfilles, who make a racket somewhere between the Pixies and early Dandy Warhols. Garagey, but not the blown-out levels kind, and the songs are very catchy even with the language barrier. Check out "Fous Le Camp" at the top of this post. It's from their excellent self-released album, Une Belle Table, which you can download in its entirety for free at their Bandcamp page. There's also video of them performing at the bottom of this post.
I also really, really liked Les Surveillantes, an incredibly charming, nerdy folk quartet from Saint-Boniface, Manitoba. Huddled around two microphones, and looking like French-Canadian Quakers, they sang about girls, apathy and science. "La Racine Carree du Couer" ("The Square Root of the Heart") was kind of about all three. Though all their songs were in French, their very funny between-song banter filled in the blanks for Anglo-monolingual folk in the audience. One of my favorite performances all week.
The rest of the Francophile showcase was a little more glitzy. Damien Robataille worked his inner Tom Jones for a crowd of excited ladies, one of whom threw a bra onstage. Tongue-in-cheek, yes, but sorta not at the same time. Montreal seems to like a little panache in their rock. We also got Yann Perreau, whose 2009 album was nominated for a Juno and epitomizes Francophile rock: indebted to Leonard Cohen, with a little Vegas and a little analogue electronic edge. And in his case, a little dub too. He was good.
Alex Nevsky seemed like a younger, blander version of Perreau, which I guess makes sense as Yann produced his new album. Nevsky and his band's flowered shirts were the most memorable thing about them. Monogrenade made anthemic, somewhat pompous rock that reminded me a bit of Parisian talent Benjamin Biolay but not as good. They had a cellist. And Geneviève Toupin crafted airy, ethereal pop not unlike Beth Orton.
Later that night was the big M for Metropolis show at the Metropolis theater, one of the nicest bigger (around 2500 capacity) venues I've ever been to. Great sightlines, sound, and lots of bars. It puts Hammerstein, Roseland and Terminal 5 to shame. The line-up here is of bands who are genuinely popular in Montreal, but it's equally schizophrenic as the other bills this week, a little something for everyone.
La Patere Rose, who also played last year's M, opens the show. She's very French, from the striped shirt to the accordion. There's also a little dance music vibe thrown into the chanson mix, as well as choreography. Very cute.
Up next was Pascale Picard Band who was so bland and forgettable I have to look up their name every time I try and reference them. If they ever made a French-Canadian remake of Dawson's Creek, Pascale Picard Band would likely be on the soundtrack.
Waking us up after that was Priestess, who -- unlike Dance Laury Dance earlier in the week -- brought some serious hard rock to M for Montreal. Though I was hoping for more mayhem. No pit, just some mild thrashing from the crowd. The band were tight and giving it their all though.
Next were The Dears whose sound is clearly designed for a big venue like Metropolis. They sounded properly epic, but played a set that was heavy on the new album, Degeneration Street, which no one has actually heard yet. (Not out till February). Maybe I don't understand how these things work, but I think if you're playing a big show like this, a festival crowd, cram your set with hits and play the best song from the new album. (That would be "Omega Dog" in this case.) Instead we only got the great "Lost in the Plot." Lost opportunity if you ask me.
Then we got the real entertainment of the night: Misteur Valaire, who I saw two years previously at M, and have become Montreal megastars. They're kind of the city's Hot Chip, in that they look like members of a high school AV club but make serious club music. Jazz trained, these guys are great musicians and have the crowd going mental the whole time. There's also costume changes and boy band style choreography.
What they don't have, however, are very many catchy songs which is where the Hot Chip comparison kind of falls apart. But in the moment, they are a one-stop dance party. But they'll need more hooks if they want to really translate to American audiences. That said, if you want to get a head start -- I think they'll be at SXSW 2011 -- you can download their album for free at their website.
The crowd kept dancing for Poirer, one of the hottest DJ/Producers in Montreal but at that point I was entirely wiped from four days of French-Canadian hospitality, music and general excess.
Videos of Jesuslesfilles and Les Surveillantes, plus some more pics, après le saut:
by Bill Pearis
The second night of M for Montreal was easily the best of the fest, with no bands I didn't like and three or four who were pretty incredible. Like the previous night, we were herded between the two performance rooms at Juste Pour Rire which is normally a comedy club, (Just for Laughs is the translation if you're French is like mine) but actually had great sound and lighting.
Judging by audience reaction alone, of which there were many locals in attendance, Beast were the most loved of the night - kind of impressive as the band only played their first live show in March. Some have called Beast "trip rock" which sort of works - you can definitely draw comparisons to Portishead or even Moloko, but they are heavier and louder. Most of the adoration, deservedly, goes to singer Betty Bonifassi, who was the main singing voice in the movie Triplets of Belleville, and who has one of Those Voices (Shirley Bassey comes to mind) - smoky, world-wear, yet powerful, enough to cause the hair on the back of your neck to stand at attention.
I also really liked Arkells who are from Hamilton, Ontario and who sounded to me like '80s heartland rock - both the Bruce Springsteen / Bob Seeger, and Replacements / Soul Asylum varieties. No pretension, just ridiculously catchy songs - I've been singing the chorus of their song "John Lennon" in my head ever since Friday.
Also on the bill: Chinatown, who were sort of a melding of The Strokes and traditional French pop with very catchy songs (in French); The night featured two new signings to Paper Bag Records (home of Tokyo Police Club and The Acorn), Winter Gloves and Woodhands. Montreal's Winter Gloves play keyboard-oriented indie rock a la TPC or Passion Pit and were definitely local favorites. Toronto keyboard-drums duo, Woodhands, were the only band to feature a laser show and were there to make you dance. You may have caught them when they played Studio B in Brooklyn with Crystal Castles.
The night's "official selection" ended with CLAASS, which is two-thirds of We Are Wolves plus a DJ friend on keyboards, have loads of style -- dressing like they were in a '40s noir film and shrouded in smoke machines. They pump out the kind of dance music I haven't heard since the heyday of Wax Trax! It's pastiche, but they do it well and I have a soft spot for this kind of stuff.
Next came the after-party which was free and open to the public. The place immediately flooded with kids, there to see Misteur Valaire, who I'd never heard of before, but are obviously massively popular in Montreal. Shout Out Out Out Out are the easiest comparison, but it's more musically varied (they're all trained jazz musicians apparently), more of a seamless dance party. Their album, which is available for free on their website, sounds more like the kind of club music you'd hear in Asian-fusion restaurants (but better) and absolutely does not do justice to their amazing live show. Hopefully they'll be bringing it across the border soon.
More pictures below...