Entries tagged with: Rah Rah

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by Bill Pearis

Featureless ghost

The seventh annual M for Montreal festival happens next week (November 14 - 17) in its namesake Canadian city. Previous years, M4M has featured mainly Montreal (and other parts of Canada) artists, being showcased to a group of "international delgates" (talent buyers, journalists, music supervisors, tour agenents and other industry types) in a tightly controlled set of shows, this year's fest expands its scope with nearly 100 performer at 16 venues, giving it more of an actual festival feel than an industry conference that has music showcases the public could by tickets to.

The line-up is much more global this year as well, with musicians from France, Iceland and, for the first time, the United States playing alongside bands from all over Canada. Artists playing the 2012 edition include Death Grips, Of Monsters and Men, Mac DeMarco, Suuns, Mykki Blanco, Sun Airway, A Place To Bury Strangers, Cadence Weapon, Memoryhouse, Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, Bleeding Rainbow and Blue Hawaii. Full list of performers is below and daily schedule is here and advance tickets to shows and panel discussions are available.

Like in years past (2011, 2010, 2009, 2008), I'll be heading up for the M fest, and will be reporting the goings-on.

If you want a taste of Montreal this week in NYC, beyond the snow we're currently experiencing, Montreal rapper Cadence Weapon plays Glasslands on Friday (11/9) with Fat Tony. Tickets are still available. Cadence Weapon tour dates are listed below.

Continue reading "2012 M for Montreal Festival: full line-up (Death Grips, A Place to Bury Strangers, Of Monsters & Men, Mac DeMarco + more)"

DOWNLOAD: Blessed Feathers - "Winter Sister" (MP3)

Blessed Feathers

Wisconsin folk duo Blessed Feathers released their debut EP, Ocean of Weeds, earlier this month, and you can stream the entire thing below. The EP was produced by Kevin McMahon (Titus Andronicus, Real Estate) and also features Thor Harris of Swans. You can also grab a free MP3 of one of its tracks, "Winter Sister," at the top of this post, and check out the video for another, "Holyoke/Springfield," below.

The band just landed in NYC for CMJ, and you'll have a number of chances to see them, including the free BrooklynVegan day party on Friday (10/19), where they'll play an opening set in the back room at noon.

In addition to that, they'll play the SESAC showcase at Cake Shop tonight (10/17); the Popular/MCT day party at Bowery Electric on Thursday (10/18) with GHXST, Savoir Adore, Ambassadors, Santah, and Royal Canoe; the Fred Perry Artist Lounge at Stratosphere Sound Recording Studios on Thursday with The Luyas, Poor Moon, Foxygen, Ape School, So So Glos, Slug Guts, and Bleeding Rainbow; the Planetary Group day party at Pianos on Friday (10/19) with The Orwells, The Intelligence, San Cisco, Turbo Fruits, Rah Rah, Twerps, The Trouble with Templeton, Tim Chaisson, Skipping Girl Vinegar, Elephant Stone, and Ditka; and the Bowery Presents day party at Pianos on Saturday (10/20).

A list of all Blessed Feathers dates, a flyer for their CMJ shows, EP stream, and video are below...

Continue reading "Blessed Feathers are here for CMJ (including BV Friday day party) -- dates, EP stream, video, MP3"

photos by Kurt Christensen

John K Samson @ Bowery Ballroom
The Weakerthans

As previously discussed, The Weakerthans completed their four-night stint at Bowery Ballroom on 12/10. We talked at length about the third show, which Rah Rah opened, but only posted pictures from night one and night two. Here are some pics from night three.

If you missed these special shows, you can still catch The Weakerthans' John K Samson on tour, including Bowery Ballroom on March 15th with Shotgun Jimmie (tickets are still on sale). Look for his new LP Provincial on January 24th via Epitaph. Listen to the first track released from that album, with more pictures from Bowery, below...

Continue reading "more pics of The Weakerthans @ Bowery Ballroom, a new song from John K. Samson"

photos by Amanda Hatfield words by Andrew Sacher

The Weakerthans

When The Weakerthans walked on stage at the sold out Bowery Ballroom Friday night (12/9) to play their 2003 album, Reconstruction Site, you could see the appreciation of the crowd's enthusiasm on John K. Samson's face before he even picked up his guitar. And from the first chord of album opener "(Manifest)," it was obvious that the band were going to feed off of that enthusiasm for the entire show. Things picked up even more on the very memorable "The Reasons," which left no one out of the venue-wide sing-along.

As Ted Leo has pointed out, often times when bands play their older albums in full, it can come off as a cheap attempt at nostalgia. But what The Weakerthans did at Bowery Ballroom was the exact opposite of that. They played through the 2003 album's songs with the energy of a band touring their debut. And they were in great spirits all night, cracking jokes and coming off as totally genuine. Reconstruction Site is also the most carefully orchestrated of all their records, which came across flawlessly as they interwove pedal steel, trumpets, and glimpses of folk rock into the power chord driven fun they were having throughout the show.

After a couple slower cuts, the band and crowd hit their highest peak on "Plea From a Cat Named Virtute." When the distortion-charged song led into its much softer ending, the crowd's energy was still so high that they were even louder than John Samson as they belted along, "I swear I'm going to bite you hard and taste your tinny blood." When the band got to the second of the three hospital sonnets, "(Hospital Vespers)," they appropriated the reverse guitar of the album version to crashing chords and cymbals, turning the song from one of the album's most introspective tracks into something way more anthemic. They did keep things toned down a few songs later, when the band minus John left the stage so he could play "One Great City!" on his own. Before he began the track, he thanked NYC for our Occupy Wall Street movement and said it has inspired many others around the world, himself included. He opted to play the track on his electric guitar, despite having an acoustic on stage, and if anyone wasn't singing along with him the whole time, they definitely joined in on the refrain, "I hate Winnipeg."

The band closed their set with a few songs off of their other albums which they played in full on one of the other three nights, the last of which was last night (12/10) when they played their 2007 album, Reunion Tour.

The Friday show opened with a set from fellow Canadian band Rah Rah. Their set was full of upbeat indie pop songs culminating in pretty huge choruses, which often brought to mind I'm From Barcelona (if they had like, 23 less members). The members did a lot of instrument switching and almost everyone in the band sang lead on at least one song. And just in case their catchy songs weren't enough, their stage antics are sure to be remembered, which included throwing "R" "A" & "H" ballon letters into the audience, shooting out confetti, and breaking open a piƱata at the end of their last song.

Weakerthans frontman John K. Samson will be back at Bowery Ballroom as part of a tour in support of his forthcoming solo album.

We didn't take any pictures at the last two nights of the Weakerthans Bowery residency, but we did post some from the first night, and we took some on the second night when Dinosaur Bones opened. Those continue, along with a shot of the limited edition NYC poster, below...

Continue reading "The Weakerthans played 4 NYC shows at Bowery Ballroom (night 2 pics, night 3 review)"