Entries tagged with: Yamantaka Sonic Titan
Austin Psych Fest 2013 (more by Tim Griffin)
The 6th annual Austin Psych Fest happens from May 2-4 at the Carson Creek Ranch (where it took place last year), and this year's lineup includes Primal Scream, Loop, The Black Angels, The Zombies, of Montreal, The Horrors, Black Lips, Avey Tare's Slasher Flick, Liars, Mono, Destruction Unit, Oneohtrix Point Never, Moon Duo, TOY, Earthless, Shannon and the Clams, La Femme, Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, Quilt, Gap Dream, Circuit Des Yeux, and more. Tickets (including a camping pass option) are on sale now.
Let's hope that means a Loop (who just played ATP End of an Era) and Primal Scream will have other North American shows while here. French band La Femme mentioned they'd be doing a two-month North American tour in 2014 and this is the first actual date we've seen.
Full Austin Psych Fest 2014 lineup below...
by Bill Pearis
Murray Lightburn @ M for Montreal 11/20/2013
Here I am again at M for Montreal, the now eight annual edition that is part music festival and part industry conference. Right now it is more of the latter, with "international delegates" (of which I am one) in from around the world attending panel discussions, sanctioned schmoozathons and seeing the night's "official selection" of bands. Over the weekend it becomes M Fest and more resembles CMJ or Pop Montreal, with bands playing at a variety of clubs across the city.
Last night six bands played in the "official selection" at Casa Del Popolo and La Sala Rossa which is right across the street. The night started at Casa with Dusted, a new-ish project from Holy Fuck's Brian Borcherdt and drummer Leon Taheny. With Dusted, Borcherdt trades electronics for a more traditional rock format. Though the setup usually means bluesy garage, Dusted are much more atmospheric and emotive. The set started a little rocky, but the duo found their footing and the last couple songs were quite good. You can stream Dusted's debut album, Total Dust, below.
Shuffling over to Sala Rossa, it was very new, very young MTL band Seoul, who I was told had formed just a few months ago and had played less than 10 shows total. Dominick had caught them at Pop Montreal last month and told me they were good and I might like them and I did. "I hear there are a lot of people in from out of town," the keyboardist told the crowd. "Just like a bar mitzvah. Please enjoy our special day." Young they may be, but they really seemed to have it together, making airy, crystaline pop that was funky and soulful in an '80s kind of way. Wild Nothing is an obvious current comparison but my mind drifted to actual Reagan-era Prefab Sprout and The Blue Nile. You can stream "Stay With Us," the only song they've offered up the public so far, below.
Back at Casa, it was Black Atlass, aka Montreal based Alex Fleming who is a neo-R&B crooner, a la Sampha, Sam Smith, or The XX. The performance was just Fleming and a guy providing the beats, and I liked the production work in general (it's on the lo-fi side, but never what I'd call murky) but am not a fan of shows like this and it takes someone with supercharisma to pull it off. Black Atlass' video for "Paris" is below.
I don't know if I'd call what Majical Cloudz singer Devon Welsh has "supercharisma" but his performance style is utterly magnetic and had the liquored-up crowd of industry folk hushed for their entire set. Welsh's performance style almost borders on spoken word, punctuating accented sylables with a downward stab of his clenched fist, and sometimes stomping, not so much for percussion as emotion. Intense. Check out photos from Majical Cloudz recent set at Glasslands here.
In between those two, Yamantaka // Sonic Titan played over at La Sala Rossa and, having seen them twice last month during CMJ, I will admit to being checked out a little. But I do like what they do. The evening ended, officially, with a theatrical performance from Murray Lightburn who has fronted The Dears since before Montreal became a "thing." Lightburn's first solo album, MASS:LIGHT, came out earlier this year and while the songs are his typical anthemic style, musically its pretty much a synthpop album.
For the show, his only backing was two singers wearing masks and angel wings, with jingle bells on staff as occasional percussion. Lightburn, meanwhile, was all in black wearing an eyepatch with a light on it. With a carefully lit stage, he was cast in silhouette the whole time. At one point he knelt by the monitors, and someone wearing a pig mask came out and draped a cloak over him. It was at this point I thought "oh boy this is going to get good" hoping things would go full Phantom of the Paradise, but that was as kooky as the night got. If you're going to have something like that happen, personally I feel like you gotta follow-through and gleefully drive the train off the rails. That said, Lightburn does possess that supercharisma gene, and his voice remains a weapon of choice.
Thursday's official selection includes Born Ruffians, Odonis Odonis and Solar Year -- and I'll be spending the afternoon watching a bunch of bands I know zilcho about, which can be exciting -- so look forward to a report on that (and more of my signature blurry iPhone pics) to come.
Streams and videos from Dusted, Seoul, Black Atlas and Murray Lightburn, below...
photos by Chris La Putt
Yamantaka Sonic Titan / Omar Souleyman / Speedy Ortiz
New Williamsburg venue Baby's All Right, after canceling CMJ shows scheduled for Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday (they found them other venues), had its opening day Friday (10/18) with our free BrooklynVegan day party, the first of two parties we threw at that venue for CMJ.
The day began pretty big with an acoustic set by Sub Pop-signed folk band The Head & the Heart who just released a new album called Lets Be Still. The first-ever performance at the new venue Friday at noon was a stripped down performance ahead of their much bigger sold out shows at Terminal 5 and Webster Hall. They also played a sold out CMJ showcase at Music Hall of Williamsburg the night before.
Then things took a turn for the weirder when the eccentric Kirin J Callinan (now backed by a band, unlike last year) came on. He was followed by the sneering UK post-punks Eagulls. Their pals/fellow Leeds band Hookworms came next, upping the psych/noise quota for the day.
Due to a last-minute scheduling change, Syrian pop singer Omar Souleyman came on next, characteristically not doing much on stage but still taking control of the room with an unforgettable set, and he was followed by the captivating, face-painted genre-defiers Yamantaka // Sonic Titan. Finally to wrap things, indie rockers Speedy Ortiz came on and showed off some new songs (like they've been doing at other CMJ shows too). Not a bad way to spend a Friday afternoon.
Complimentary drinks were provided to those in attendance by Sailor Jerry who also brought in the Three Kings Tattoo artists who were giving out free tattoos for six hours straight in the venue's side bar. Plus, if you were hungry, free Raw Revolution organic live food bars were scattered around the venue for your taking. Thanks also to Vinny's Music for supplying the gear.
Saturday we were at the same venue with the NYC debut of Ex Hex (new band fronted by Mary Timony of Wild Flag, Helium, Autoclave), a solo set from Mac McCaughn of Superchunk, Pallbearer, Joanna Gruesome, Hop Along, Nothing, Public Service Broadcasting, Torres, King Dude, Pity Sex, Yuck, Courtney Barnett, Drowners, Spires and more. Pictures from that day coming soon.
Pictures from our Friday party are in this post. More below...
photos by Dominick Mastrangelo
Yamantaka // Sonic Titan & Angel Olsen - Pop Montreal Day 3
Back before Montreal was in NYC for CMJ, NYC was in Montreal for the annual Pop Montreal festival which we began by seeing DIANA and Empress Of followed by The Dodos, Braids, Suuns, Patrick Watson & more. Day three continued like this...
Pristine, cloudless blue skies, temperatures in the 70's . . . Indian summer in Montreal. It's officially the best weather I've experienced in any of my three trips to Pop Montreal. All five days would be exactly like this. How appropriate, then, that I would see How Sad at Friday's Passovah-sponsored day party at Divan Orange, as their new EP is entitled Indian Summer. Their infectious, buoyant pop, including the title track, was a lot of fun and as people got off work for the weekend and filled up the space. The end of their set was almost full-on dance party.
The earlier part of the afternoon at Divan featured Valleys, Mori, Michael Feuerstack, The Highest Order and more. Valleys impressed as did Mori, who I saw two nights earlier opening for DIANA on the first day of the festival. The hushed folk of Michael Feuerstack provided a welcome pause between the louder full-band sets performing on either side of him.
Rewinding a bit, my afternoon started at Little Italy Park with a nice set by Toronto's GROUNDERS (who are in NYC for CMJ) followed by the rootsy pop of Katie Moore.
For the evening part of the program I opted to catch several artists I'd seen before (though I skipped Local Natives, Wild Nothing, and Majical Cloudz).
First off was the trancy, glitchy Solar Year who I saw open for Julia Holter and Tim Hecker at last year's Pop, followed by 2012 Polaris Prize-nominated Yamantaka//Sonic Titan (who play a BrooklynVegan CMJ day party TODAY - 10/18). Dressed in a strictly adhered black, white, red color scheme their sound overpowered the tiny Breakglass Recording Studio (much like it probably will at Arlene's Grocery tonight.) These were epic, theatrical songs that are meant for bigger venues. The floor-level stage meant nobody within the first several feet of the sold-out show could see the band or the handmade, cardboard props that were placed about the stage.
I ducked out halfway through their set to get over to the Ukrainian Federation for Angel Olsen and Leif Vollebekk. Angel's set was a predictably assured performance. I've seen four of her shows - all at Glasslands - so it was great to hear that arresting voice of hers echo about the much bigger Federation venue, one of my favorites in Montreal.
And then it was Leif's turn. He was my big discovery at my first Pop in 2010 and I was happy to see him headlining his own festival slot this year.
He and his band, which featured brass and strings, worked through material from his new record, "North Americana." Gorgeous versions of "From the Fourth" and "A Wildfire Took Down Rosenberg" were lump-in-the-throat moments and his cover of The Killers' "Read My Mind" made the original sound very ordinary.
Begging off the late-night portion of the festival (because there was scant chance of anything else topping the previous few hours) I went in search of food with some new friends. And, being so close, we ended up at the excellent burger joint, Nouveau Palais, where the DJs were spinning classic hip-hop. Three excellent days in Montreal down with two still to come.
More pictures from Day Three, below...
set times are at the bottom of this post...
Okay, so we might be a little late with this announcement (and someone cancelled while I was writing this post), but we are now very excited (and relieved) to finally announce most of the lineups for our 2013 BrooklynVegan CMJ parties.
UNFORTUNATELY THOUGH, we still can't say the venue yet. Stay tuned for that announcement coming Thursday, but we promise it will be fairly convenient.
THE VENUE IS ANNOUNCED: It's Baby's All Right! (146 Broadway in Williamsburg)
Omar Souleyman (photo by David Andrako)
here we go...
On FRIDAY (10/18) we're going from noon to 6 PM and kicking things off huge with an acoustic set from The Head and the Heart at noon (the same Sub Pop-signed band whose upcoming shows at Terminal 5, Webster Hall and MHOW are all sold out).
Kirin J Callinan under Yamantaka // Sonic Titan (by Tim Griffin)
From there we change the energy drastically with a set by Kirin J Callinan (who is with a full band this year, unlike last year), Leeds band Eagulls who are followed by Leeds rockers Hookworms, who are followed by theatrical indie-metal-pop-prog band Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, Syrian pop singer Omar Souleyman (!), and finally indie rockers Speedy Ortiz!
Mac Superchunk (photo by Chris La Putt)
Then, on SATURDAY (10/19), we're going 10 straight hours, from noon to 10 PM, with local psych band Spires, followed by the emo-shoegaze of Pity Sex, Australian singer/songwriter Courtney Barnett, the new incarnation of Yuck, goth/noir country balladeer King Dude, Relapse-signed shoegazers Nothing, a SPECIAL heavy GUEST that will be announced Friday night, alt-folk singer Torres, folk-y emo-y rockers Hop Along, a solo set from Superchunk's Mac McCaughn, and the NYC debut of Ex Hex -- the new band of Mary Timony (Wild Flag, Helium, Autoclave)!
UPDATE: Joanna Gruesome, Public Service Broadcasting, Drowners & more added! Party now goes till 2am.
Both of these shows are 100% FREE, no RSVP necessary. No Arcade Fire. No Banksy. There is free food and drink and ink though.
Come by and pick up a free Raw Revolution bar to snack on and a complimentary Sailor Jerry rum drink, AND A FREE TATTOO. Sailor Jerry is bringing in Three Kings Tattoo artists who will be giving out complimentary tattoos right there in our venue (again)! Tattoos are first come, first served, as is admission to the shows.
1) One late announcement
2) Two free shows
3) 18 artists
4) Free drinks
5) Free tattoos till 6pm each day (designs pictured above)
A venue to be announced Thursday Baby's All right
A special guest playing Friday to be announced Thursday night Omar Souleyman
A special guest playing Saturday to be announced Friday night Pallbearer
9) JUST ADDED: four more bands Saturday!
And thanks to Vinny's Music for the gear!
See you there?
Also, don't forget, our metal blog Invisible Oranges is also hosting three shows. There's the 2-night official showcase at Saint Vitus with Pelican headlining both nights, and a number of openers each day (Ringworm included). And the late night show happening afterwards.
Full schedule for both of our parties below...
Eternal Summers at MHOW in February (more by Amanda Hatfield)
One of the best parts about CMJ is the day shows that are often free and give you a chance to see live music and grab a bev on your lunch break (or call in sick). To give you a chance to plan your early afternoon ahead of time, we're giving you tomorrow's (Wednesday's) daytime picks today (Tuesday). You can browse our full NYC show calendar for all shows, and here are some highlights...
Eternal Summers, Eagulls, Bleeding Rainbow, Beach Day, Joanna Gruesome, Valleys, The History of Apple Pie, Mood Rings @ Pianos
For fans of indie pop and shoegaze (not to mention Anglophiles), this free day party is hard to pass up with UK bands Eagulls, Joanna Gruesome and The History of Apple Pie all on the bill, plus the one-two punch of touring pals Eternal Summers and Bleeding Rainbow, and the dreampop of Valleys and Mood Rings. Beach Day too. Flyer and set times below.
Weekend, TEEN, Coke Weed, Tunde Olaniran, Flashlights @ Cake Shop
This free Terrorbird day party features shoegazey post-punks Weekend, dream pop band TEEN, the VU-ish Coke Weed and more. Flyer and set times below.
Special Guest, Arc Iris, Hunters, Jesca Hoop, Diego Garcia @ Ace Hotel
This show kicks off at noon with Elefant's Diego Garcia, followed by singer/songwriter Jesca Hoop, lively rockers Hunters, and Providence indie pop collective Arc Iris. Plus there's a special guest, and Ace Hotel says "trust us, it's good." Set times below.
The Melodic, Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, Them Swoops, Juliette Commagere @ Fontanas
The band we're most excited for on this bill is Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, whose music spans indie pop, prog, and metal (to name a few), and whose live show is quite the spectacle. They're on at 3:15 PM.
The Helio Sequence, Weekend, Cub Sport, Bear Ceuse @ Judson Church
Seattle radio station KEXP begins their annual run of free live performance broadcasts today with Bear Ceuse (whose member Adam Horne is responsible for Indie Kidz Songs), Australian synthpop act Cub Sport, shoegazey post-punks Weekend, and finally Sub Pop's indie pop duo The Helio Sequence. Set times below.
Jamaican Queens, In The Valley Below, Float Fall, Bonzie, Misun, Luluc, Eden Mulholland @ Pianos (Upstairs)
The artist we're most excited to see here is Bonzie, who's a young Chicagoan with some pretty strong folk songs. You can stream a few of those below. She's on at 3:50 PM.
For all of tonight's shows, and tomorrow's, check out our full NYC show calendar.
For laughs, check out the NYC Comedy calendar too.
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by Andrew Sacher and Bill Pearis
Hop Along at Saint Vitus in September (more by Vladislav Grach)
Sure, NYC has a lot of great shows almost every night of the week. But CMJ definitely stacks the deck (and the stages) a little more, with some overachieving bands playing upwards of 10 times over the next five days (10/15 - 10/19). With that in mind, here are 30 bands we think are worth catching during CMJ 2013. Clicking on the artist name takes you to their corresponding page on our NYC Show Calendar with a list of all of their upcoming NYC shows. We also made a Spotify playlist featuring songs from all the bands (who are on the streaming service).
Check out our full list and a stream of that Spotify playlist below...
by Bill Pearis
Our friends at M for Montreal will be down for CMJ again for their showcase which, as in years past, happens at Arlene's Grocery on October 18 with Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, TOPS, Pat Jordache, CAMP, Kandle, A K U A and Foxtrott. Tickets are $10 at the door, or you can get in with a CMJ badge or Evening Showcase Pass (based on capacity, of course).
Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, who formed in Montreal but now reside in Toronto, are probably the best-known band on the bill, and will release their new album, UZU, on October 29. The multi-hyphenate band are better known for their theatrical live shows which you should witness if you can. They're on
late at 1 AM. UPDATE: YT//ST are now playing at 10 PM. They play 285 Kent at 1 AM later that night (see below).
YT//ST are also playing at least two other shows during CMJ: the Panache showcase at Knitting Factory on October 16 with Jacco Gardner, Saint Rich, U.S. GIrls, Slim Twig, and Arp (tickets); and the unofficial Pitchfork show with Speedy Ortiz, Priests, Joanna Gruesome, Perfect Pussy, Eleanor Friedberger (solo), and Courtney Barnett (tickets). (Currently both P4K and M have Y//ST's settimes as 1 AM, some shifting will likely happen at Arlene's.) After CMJ, they'll play Basilica Hudson on Halloween, which sounds like a pretty good time, too.
TOPS played CMJ last year and are working on the follow-up to 2012's Tender Opposites which came out on Arbutus Records (Grimes, Doldrums, Blue Hawaii). You can stream that, in all it's lite R&B indiepop splendour, below.
It's been almost two years since Pat Jordache last played NYC and they've undergone a somewhat radical reinvention since then into dark postpunk territory, though not your average influences, pulling from Jah Wobble style dub, and mid-'80s 4AD (to my ears at least). You can stream their three digital singles from this year below ("O.M.O." is excellent). You can also catch Pat Jordache at Silent Barn on October 17 with CAMP (who also play the M showcase) and Chicago's J Fernandez. More info on that show here.
Pat also plays in CAMP, who share a similar vibe, with some slinky funk -- complete with '80s-style watery bass, -- on their track "Little Boy Blue," which reminds me of, um, Kajagoogoo. (In a good way? Maybe Japan is a more palatable comparison.) You can stream it below.
Kandle is Kandle Osborne whose father, Ben, is the singer of long-running extremely popular (in Canada) Canadian band 54-40. Sam Golberg of Broken Social Scene produced her debut EP (streamable below) and plays in her live band.
A K U A spent time recently as one of Solange's backup singers and, recently, has been collaborating with Twin Shadow drummer Andy Bauer, the results of which can be heard on this year's One's Company EP, which you can stream some of below.
As for Foxtrott, that is the name Marie-Hélène L. Delorme records under. Her music is definitely dance pop but don't look to compare her to other one-named Montreal singers -- it draws from a variety of global influences and is pretty good. Judge for yourself: a few tracks are streamable below.
As M for Montreal has done every year, the night starts off with a "poutine party" that is free and open to the public. During that time (5 - 7 PM) there are a couple Francophone acts playing, Quebec city rapper Webster and VioleTT Pi.
Song streams, videos, and the M for Montreal showcase schedule below...
Speedy Ortiz at Death by Audio in July (more by Vladislav Grach)
Trad-indie torch carriers Speedy Ortiz have been doing a ton of touring this year, many NYC shows included, and that show-count will increase even more this month when the Northampton, MA band returns for CMJ.
The first of their currently announced CMJ appearances is the previously discussed Panache showcase happening on 10/17 at Baby's All Right (146 Broadway) with Hunters, Ex-Cult, Calvin Love, Homeshake and Big Ups. More info at the Facebook event. Flyer below.
Then they play Pitchfork's unnoficial show happening at 285 Kent on 10/18 with Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, Priests, Joanna Gruesome, Perfect Pussy, Eleanor Friedberger (solo), and Courtney Barnett. Tickets for that show are on sale now. Flyer and schedule below.
Lastly (for now at least), they play the previously discussed Exploding In Sound Records showcase at Silent Barn on 10/19 with Pile, Fat History Month, Two Inch Astronaut, Grass Is Green, Kal Marks, Palehound, Krill, Roomrunner, and Porches.
After CMJ, Speedy Ortiz singer/guitarist Sadie Dupuis will take part in the Elliott Smith tribute at Glasslands on 10/21 which also features Cat Power, Cole of DIIV, Sky Ferreira, Marissa Nadler and more. Tickets for that show are still available.
And then just after that, Speedy will join Dinosaur Jr. frontman J. Mascis for another Brooklyn show at The Flat on 10/23. More details on that show TBA. Dinosaur Jr. will be back in NYC in December to open for MGMT at Barclays Center (12/13) (tickets).
Meanwhile, speaking of Pitchfork CMJ, they're doing another unofficial show at 285 Kent on 10/19 with an electronic-oriented lineup of Ryan Hemsworth, Kelela, Traxman, The Range, Jahiliyya Field, Huerco S, and Mas Ysa. Tickets for that show are on sale now. Flyer and schedule below.
All Speedy Ortiz dates are listed, along with show flyers and more, below...
Yamantaka // Sonic Titan at Mercury Lounge in 2012 (more by Tim Griffin)
Canadian costumed-face-painted-progressive-psychedelia collective Yamantaka // Sonic Titan have already announced they're coming to our side of the border for CMJ, and it's since been revealed that they'll be doing a quick North American tour after that as well. Those dates include another NYC-area appearance on Halloween (10/31) at Basilica in Hudson, NY (where the Basilica Sound Scape festival just happened). That show is with Norwegian art pop musician Jenny Hval (who also has NYC shows coming up), plus special guests Tanz Praxis (featuring C. Lavender). Tickets for the show will be available via Basilica's site soon.
YT//ST's one currently announced CMJ show is the Panache showcase happening on October 16 at Knitting Factory with Jacco Gardner, Saint Rich, U.S. GIrls, Slim Twig, and Arp. Tickets for that show are still available, and you can also try to get in using your CMJ badge.
YT//ST also just made a video for "One" off their upcoming album UZU (due out 10/29 via Suicide Squeeze), which you can watch, along with the list of all tour dates, below...
Yamantaka // Sonic Titan in Austin in 2012 (more by Tim Griffin)
As you may know, the CMJ 2013 initial lineup was just released (check out pictures from the announcement party), and following that announcement, Panache Booking has revealed the lineup for its official showcase. The showcase happens on Wednesday, October 16 at Knitting Factory with Canadian multi-genre psych freaks Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, '60s-style psychedelic pop revivalist Jacco Gardner, Delicate Steve offshoot Saint Rich, experimentalist U.S. Girls (aka Meghan Remy), her frequent collaborator Slim Twig, and electronic musician turned glam rocker Arp.
Tickets for the showcase are on sale now.
Saint Rich just made a video for their track "Officer," which you can watch below. They'll be in NYC even sooner than CMJ for their previously discussed Bowery Ballroom show with WIld Belle.
Yamantaka // Sonic Titan are releasing their new album, UZU, on October 29 via Suicide Squeeze and they recently posted the first single, "One," which you can stream below.
by Bill Pearis
Moon King at Casa Del Popolo, 11/17/2012
Saturday was the fourth day of M for Montreal and the second day of the weekend M Fest with shows spread out all over the city. It was a welcome change this year, especially on Saturday, as all previous years have ended with a big show at the Metropolis theatre usually featuring a bunch of artists aimed toward a Montreal crowd that may not appeal to those who don't live there (like, say, Pierre Lapointe who I suffered through in 2008). There was still a big show at Metropolis this year (Of Monsters and Men, who played the tiny Casa del Popolo last year) which I stopped by check out opener Sóley (both of whom are in town this week), but soon split to see other things.
CTZNSHP at Sala Rossa, 11/17/2012
From there I went back to Sala Rossa to check out CTZNSHP, a trio from Montreal who play gloomy postpunk. "I've been a sick and my voice is shot," singer Jesse LeGallais admitted before the started. "You're gonna have to put up with my Ian Curtis imitation tonight." And he was definitely singing in a froggier register than what's heard on their recordings, so I won't judge to harshly. Musically they were pretty good.
Goose Hut at Casa Del Popolo, 11/17/2012
Then it was across the street to Casa del Popolo for another Montreal trio, Goose Hut. I wasn't too keen on the name, but they won me over pretty quickly and were one of the better laptop-reliant bands I've seen in a while. All three members sang, two played drums (one of whom also played keyboards) the main vocalist/guitarist flung his arms out like he was trying to fly whenever he wasn't strumming. They also have ridiculously catchy songs heavy on "wee-oohs" and "whoah-ohs" as well as a charming, low-key stage presence. Also, people were dancing throughout their set. Goose Hut are also better live than their free download EP might have you believe (stream it below) so keep an eye out for these three.
Moon King at Casa Del Popolo, 11/17/2012
At this point I was going to leave to go catch Duchess Says at Katacombes but, at the urging of a new friend, I decided to stick around Casa for at least a couple song of Moon King's set and ended up staying for the whole thing. They were terrific. As you may know, Moon King are Daniel Woodhead and Maddy Wilde, both of whom were in Toronto's Spiral Beach (who I once saw open for Sloan) along with Daniel's brother Arick (aka Doldrums) and Dorian Wolf (who now plays bass with Austra). Live Moon King are a four-piece with a drummer and synth bassist and make soaring, shoegazy pop (some of it is very Lush). Woodhead is a crazy confident frontman, throwing rockstar poses which looked all the more striking with the band's stark, bright lighting setup. I hadn't really given their Obsession I mini-lp musch of a listen but was really impressed with them and it was easily one of the Top 5 sets I saw at M. NYC can see Moon King next week when they open for Twin Sister and School of Seven Bells at Music Hall of Williamsburg on November 28 and tickets are still available.
Odonis Odonis at Casa Del Popolo, 11/17/2012
Maddy Wilde also played in Toronto's Odonis Odonis who were up next and played noisey, garagey psych. I enjoyed their set but wanted to scoot back across the street to Sala Rossa for some of Yamantaka // Sonic Titan's set. Which I only stuck around for for two songs (interesting, but not really my thing), instead heading off to L'Esco for a couple Francophone rock bands.
Le Kid et les Marinellis at L'Esco, 11/17/2012
Le Kid et les Marinellis made very '60s Nuggets-y pop who were a lot of fun, and had the tiny room moving. A lot of bands make this kind of music, but not that many do it in French, which definitely worked to their advantage. Finally, it was Jesus Les Filles (who I've seen before and really like) who took the stage at nearly 3 AM. Having just got back from Iceland airwaves, the band had brought back some of that country's fermented shark delicacy for the crowd to try which, having seen that episode of No Reservations, kept far away from. There was talk of an afterparty, but I had to be at the airport at 10 AM so that was it for my fifth M for Montreal.
Philippe B at Cafe Campus, 11/17/2012
Actually, I should mention the annual Saturday matinee Francophone showcase at Cafe Campus which features bands that will likely never play America. We got three hip hop groups (one of whom, Koriass, was pretty good), cutie pie singer Maia Leia</strong> and Philippe B who played with a string quartet. Unfortunately I missed Les Trois Accords who are apparently "the Green Day of Montreal." So it goes.
In addition to everything else we posted, today, here's some more, and some reminders too...
It's also National Voter Registration Day, as miss Annie Clark has so kindly reminded us above. Did you register to vote yet? We also would like to know, however, what's the deal with the Tiny Tim photo in the background?
Speaking of St. Vincent, it's David Byrne / St. Vincent Week here in NYC. Their first of three area shows together happens tonight at the Beacon Theater, as Kelly Pratt pointed out in the latest edition of his tour diary.
Neil Young has started a Twitter account and will be taking your questions via it in October. Right now, though, @NeilYoung seems to handled by a marketing intern.
Paper Bag Records just released the free David Bowie tribute album, Paper Bag Records vs. The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, with covers by Austra & CFCF, PS I Love You, The Luyas, Yamantaka/Sonic Titan and more. Download it for free HERE.
Speaking of Yamantaka/Sonic Titan, they performed at the Polaris Prize Gala in Toronto last night, but ended up losing to Feist.
Converge is back with "Shame In the Way" a new song from their forthcoming LP All We Love We Leave Behind. Stream that new track, coupled with an interview with vocalist Jacob Bannon in the latest Show Now Mercy at Pitchfork. Look for the LP on 10/9 via Epitaph.
Sweden's Terrible Feelings have released a new video for "Next Round's On You" from their Shadows LP. Check that out below.
Field Report visited the A.V. Club's HQ in Chicago and took on the Sufjan Stevens mainstay "Chicago" for their Undercover series. Check out the clip below.
More stuff below...
Last month the 2012 Polaris Music Prize, which awards a Canadian album of recorded music each year, revealed their long list and this week the short list was revealed. Cadence Weapon, Cold Specks, Drake, Kathleen Edwards, Feist, Fucked Up, Grimes, Handsome Furs, Japandroids, and Yamantaka // Sonic Titan are the 10 artists vying for this year's Prize, which will be announced at a gala on September 24. Who's gonna win?
photos by Zach Pollack, words by Parker Langvardt
Thurston Moore/Shadowy Men.../Yamantaka//Sonic Titan at Sled Island, 6/22/2012
We started Friday (6/22) of Calgary's Sled Island Music & Arts festival at Broken City, where we caught the Toronto instrumental legends Shadowy Men On A Shadowy Planet, the secret headliners of an all ages Mammoth Recording Company show. Shadowy Men's first show in 18 years took place a couple nights before (6/20) at No. 1 Legion. Don Pyle played his hollowbody electric guitar with a twangy country edge, using the whammy bar heavily to provide the surf sound the band is known for. Bassist Dallas Good's bright tone had a slight distorted edge to it, helping to provide the sense of adrenaline in their performance, exemplified by "Having an Average Weekend" (aka the Kids in the Hall Theme, video below).
After a couple hours off, we saw Yamantaka//Sonic Titan at Grand Theatre Junction. The Montreal band's set was similar to their performance at Schubas in Chicago, where I saw them kick off their first North American tour, though it was much more polished. Near the end of the set the whole band broke into a hypnotic chant over rolling drums, with the occasional counter-chant from drummer Alaska. After "Hoshi Neko," they broke into the punishing and noisy "A Star Over Pureland". Yamantaka//Sonic Titan also played Saturday at the same venue after How To Dress Well."
Thurston Moore and his new band Chelsea Light Moving walked on stage, and Moore said, "We're the Cowboy Junkies," referencing the beloved, mega-selling Canadian folk-rockers. As a black and white video ran in the background, they began with the dissonant and crunchy "Pretty Bad" from Moore's 1995 album Psychic Hearts which ended, like a lot of Moore's work, with feedback and droning. Moore furiously vibrated his whammy bar and Samara Lubelski quickly bowed her violin. In the middle of "Ono Soul", Moore left his guitar feedback on his stage monitor to locate something as the rest of the band improvised noise. He casually wandered around the stage until he found a pair of sticks, which he used to scrape his strings before they fell back into the song. They then played their new song "Burroughs." One of the last songs I caught before heading to Feist was another new one, which I believe was called "Groove and Linda." Moore remarked that "all songs will be free this year until some record company makes product out of it, which may happen," and by "may happen," he means it will definitely happen courtesy of Matador Records. Videos of two songs are below.
I caught the last few songs of Calgary native Feist, who performed backed by female trio Mountain Man, as well as a drummer, keyboardist, and a guitarist/multi-instrumentalist. That said, most of the members were playing tambourine during the first song I heard. The show happened at Olympic Plaza, the outdoor main stage of Sled Island, which was a giant puddle after the rain that occurred earlier in the evening. Video from her set is below.
We headed back to Broken City for Dirty Ghosts, who also played at the venue earlier in the day before Shadowy Men On A Shadowy Planet. Guitarist and singer Allyson Baker played a lot of distorted off-beat chords over live bassist Erin McDermott's melodic lines, providing a positive feel to their punk sound. The Strange Boys closed the night with their country-tinged garage rock.
More photos from Day 3, plus a few videos, are below.
photos by David Andrako
Yamantaka // Sonic Titan at The Garrison - 6/15/12
Like a Japanese Kiss, the self-described "Noh-wave" seven-piece were as much about the live spectacle as about their music, which oscillated between standard, straightforward rock and doom metal atmospherics. Not surprisingly, the band were better when they practised the latter, incorporating jabs of keyboard and harmonized group vocals into their full-bodied sound. They started weak -- plodding tempos and too-simple drumming did the band no favours -- but by the end, they'd won over the venue, using phrase cycling and repetition to build and release tension. -[Exclaim]NXNE's second night (June 15) included shows at more than thirty venues across Toronto. Pictures from shows at The Garrison, with Yamantaka//Sonic Titan (the subject of the above review), Doldrums, Art vs Science, and Peter Kernel, and at Silver Dollar Room, with TOPS and UN, are below.
If you missed it, check out pictures from Thursday's shows HERE.
photos by Tim Griffin
Yamantaka // Sonic Titan at Mohawk - 6/6/12
Yamantaka // Sonic Titan just finished up a tour with Xiu Xiu and Father Murphy. That tour didn't come to NYC (Xiu Xiu and Father Murphy played here with Dirty Beaches) but it did hit the Mohawk in Austin on 6/6, and YT//ST stopped by for their own show at Mercury Lounge on Wednesday (6/13). Pictures of Yamantaka // Sonic Titan from their Austin show are in this post, and pics of Xiu Xiu and Father Murphy from that show can be found on bvAustin.
More pics from the Mohawk show below...
The long list for the 2012 Polaris Music Prize, Canada's annual award for a great album, has been revealed. It includes Leonard Cohen, Cold Specks, Drake, Feist, Fucked Up, Grimes, Japandroids, The Weeknd, Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, and more. Check out the full list below. Who's your money on?
photos by Joe McCabe
Xiu Xiu at Bowery Ballroom 5/4/12
Xiu Xiu and Dirty Beaches (whose live show is no longer a one-man affair) are wrapping up a tour together which hit NYC on May 4 at Bowery Ballroom with support from Father Murphy. Xiu XIu's set covered pretty much his entire catalog, reaching as far back as "Suha" off his 2002 debut, Knife Play, through stuff off this year's Always, and also threw in a cover of Joy Divison/New Order's "Ceremony." He returned for an encore to cover Suicide's "Frankie Teardrop" (video below). It's too bad he didn't bring out his Suicide-worshipping tourmate to help him on that one.
After Xiu Xiu and Dirty Beaches finish their run together this week, Xiu Xiu will continue to tour into next month with Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, who we recently interviewed on bvChicago. That leg of the tour won't return to NYC, but as discussed, YT//ST will play their own show here on June 13 at Mercury Lounge with YVETTE. Tickets for that show are still available.
More pics, videos, and setlist from the Bowery Ballroom show below...
Off! @ NXNE 2011 (more by Natasha Ryan)
The most memorable thing that happened the year I visited Toronto for NXNE was Iggy Pop & The Stooges playing their big, outdoor, free, no-ticket-or-badge-required show downtown at Yonge-Dundas Square. Last year the Descendents did it. This year they've landed the Flaming Lips which should be an amazing spectacle. And:
NXNE Music has confirmed that Bad Religion, Raekwon & Ghostface Killah and Matthew Good will headline free shows at Yonge-Dundas Square (YDS) throughout the seven-day festival. The NXNE Music line-up also includes performances at YDS and in the clubs by Of Montreal, No Use For A Name, Purity Ring, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Death Grips, The Men, Bleached, Good Riddance, METZ, Ceremony, Plants & Animals, The Death Set, The Sadies & Andre Williams, Oberhofer, Reigning Sound, Action Bronson, 2:54, Yamantaka/ /Sonic Titan, The Hundred in The Hands, Rival Schools, Killer Mike, Young Magic, Hayes Carll, Friends, Hollerado, Bran Van 3000, The Black Belles, Doldrums, Odonis Odonis, Mac DeMarco, Bass Drum of Death, Porcelain Raft, Exitmusic, Violens, Grass Widow, Eight and a Half, DZ Deathrays, Jonathan Toubin, Art vs. Science, B L A C K I E, The Nils and Ivan Julian (ex-Richard Hell & The Voidoids).Jonathan Toubin!!
This year's fest takes place at multiple venues across Toronto from June 11-17, 2012. Tickets are on sale.
Last year BrooklynVegan co-hosted a boat party with M For Montreal and Bruise Cruise.
by Andrew Sacher
Yamantaka // Sonic Titan
Canadian duo Yamantaka // Sonic Titan (aka Alaska B and Ruby Kato Attwood) wrapped up 2011 with a self titled album that's been picking up more and more speed into the new year. The band combines progressive rock, psychedelia, sludge metal, noise, and a handful other genres, coming out with an undeniably eclectic sound. Both members are of Asian ethnicity and are practicing Buddhists, which they openly express as having influenced their sound. Redefine Mag are fans, but are a bit cynical about it saying, there is a degree of intense Asian fetishism present in YT//ST's schtick that translates to their image in an arguably trite way." Meanwhile, Now writes that "Yamantaka//Sonic Titan purposely position themselves at the nebulous centre of multiple dialogues about identity politics, culture, genre, discipline and even what it means to be a band," and Pitchfork calls them "stoner-rock imaginings of Chinese opera." The Grid says that the band explores "Asian, Indigenous and diasporic identities, riffing on and sending up stereotypes while crafting their own unique and utterly compelling ways of telling stories."
The band's desire to fusion Eastern and Western cultures does bring to mind Japanese bands Boris and Boredoms, and if either of those bands had Lizzi Bougatsos of Gang Gang Dance singing, it probably wouldn't sound too far off from YT//ST. Their Pitchfork interview also mentions that their band name references a Buddhist deity and a Sleep song, and that their self-penned genre, "Noh-wave" is a reference to the Japanese musical drama form Noh, and obviously, No Wave.
Referencing that many things from across the globe, history, and a wide musical palette and putting it all into one cohesive album (which clocks in just over 30 minutes with 7 songs) sounds great on paper. But if you're wondering if Yamantaka // Sonic Titan can actually accomplish it, stream the entire album at their bandcamp. It's as weird as it is catchy, as heavy as it is soft, and as modern as it is nostalgic. Also check out the video for album track "Hoshi Neko" below.
Their live shows, which include tons of theatrics like face paint, masks, costumes, and visuals, feature other members in addition to Ruby Kato Attwood and Alaska B. Their facebook credits Ange Loft, John Ancheta, Brendan Swanson, Alana Ruth, and Walter Scott. Note that three of the members include "art" as one of their "instruments" and that they also have members to handle lighting, stage, and costume.
You can catch them at one of their upcoming dates which include the Jeff Mangum-curated ATP Minehead UK in March and a run of US dates with Xiu XIu on their upcoming tour. Yamantaka // Sonic Titan don't play at Xiu Xiu's Bowery Ballroom show (5/4) (Dirty Beaches does) but they'll play their own NYC show just after the tour ends. That show happens at Mercury Lounge on June 13. Tickets go on sale Friday (3/9) at noon with an AmEx presale starting Wednesday (3/7) at noon.
All dates and video below...
Xiu Xiu in Boston in 2010 (more by Benjamin Lozovsky)
Xiu Xiu and DIrty Beaches are set to release a limited edition split 7" on Record Store Day which includes Xiu Xiu covering Erasure's "Always" and Dirty Beaches covering Francoise Hardy's "Tu Ne Dis Rien."
The two will also team up for a number of dates on Xiu Xiu's international tour including a NYC show happening on May 4 at Bowery Ballroom with support from Father Murphy. Tickets for the NYC show go on sale Friday (3/2) at noon with an AmEx presale starting Wednesday (2/29) at noon. All dates, including some with Canada's Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, are listed below.
And, "Always" isn't just the name of the Erasure track that Xiu Xiu is covering. It's also the name of Xiu Xiu's new album which comes out on March 6 via Polyvinyl. The album was produced by Greg Sauiner of Deerhoof and you can stream the entire thing below.
All dates and album stream below...