South By Southwest

SXSW Preview: Eliza Doolittle

Posted on by Ricky in South By Southwest | Leave a comment

Toronto – With Lily Allen on the constant verge of collapse, it would seem that the door has been left wide open for many artists to capture the heart of the UK and indie nation with sharply written bubbly summer pop music. Enter Eliza Doolittle, a cute twenty two year old brunette whose pop songs seem to channel the good time vibes of 60s girl bands and motown while sounding somewhat modern at the same time. Eliza’s self titled debut record has already done extremely well in the UK charts and she is now ready to take her act to the shores of America. It looks like Austin, Texas will be her Normandy, only instead of blood and guns, she’ll be making a landing armed with a cheery voice and music perfect for spring.

SXSW Schedules:
Thu-Mar-17 Pure Volume House 504 Trinity Street – 3:00pm Capitol Idolator Party
Thu-Mar-17 Malaia 300 East 6th Street – 6:15pm Entertainment Weekly
Fri-Mar-18 The Belmont 305 West 6th Street – 8:00pm West Rocks
Sat-Mar-19 Tap Room 311 Colorado Street – 6:00pm Hotel Café / Official SXSW Showcase
Sat-Mar-19 Cedar Street Courtyard 208 W 4th Street – 8:00pm Steve Madden Party

Check out her hit single Pack Up

Eliza Doolittle – Pack Up
Uploaded by EMI_Music. – See the latest featured music videos.

SXSW Preview: Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.

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Oil portrait by Joanna Marie Care

Toronto – First of all, you know your band is doing something positive when someone does an oil portrait of you. Dale Earnhardt Jr Jr is a two man project composed of Joshua Epstein and Daniel Zott. I had been receiving emails about the buzz that the band is generating since last June but because their band name reminded me of Dale Earnhardt, which reminded me of Nascar, I promptly ignored it. How stupid is that?

It was quite stupid. I rediscovered (or discovered?) this band whilst listening to a SXSW compilation. Amongst all the mediocre music you would expect from a compilation of a thousand or so songs, I was delighted to hear a catchy melodic track named Vocal Chords that evoked memories of jogging along the beach, buying a mango milkshake and eating an avocado sandwich. Of course, I have never done this before, but I can live vicariously through someone who has.

While it might seem like I’ve only been gravitating towards summery, breezy tracks that remind me of warmer times, one can’t deny this tracks overall quality. Many bands has done the whole “light folky pop backed by computer dance beats” tracks before, but few tracks come across as catchy as this one. The band’s debut album, It’s A Corporate World comes out April 26th and like all the other bands with albums out this year, they will be taking their show to SXSW. Here are the set time(s):

Wednesday March 16th, The Phoenix, 9PM

Check out the song I was talking about:
Vocal Chords-Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. by TimeOutNewYork

SXSW Preview: Tahiti 80

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Toronto – With the recent popularity of Phoenix and some valerie bands, it would only seem natural for more French electro pop acts to come out of the woodworks. One of those bands that is enjoying a bit of a renaissance is Tahiti 80. If that name sounds familiar to you, that’s because Tahiti 80 was around when French electro pop bands first started invading the shores of America in early 2000s. Their single Heartbeat made them many fans in that era, as the effortless playful summer tones of that song was a nice contrast to all the other music that was popular at the time. You have probably heard this song. If not the original, then the popular Cornelius remix that exists.

Tahiti 80 – Heartbeat by Hipstersw/kids

Since that time, the band has released four more albums but were unable to obtain similar success on the rugged shores of America. The new infusion of French talent in recent years has once again opened the doors for Tahiti 80 to try to reclaim what once was theirs, if for only a fleeting moment.

The Past, The Present, and The Possible is Tahiti 80’s new album. Their sixth effort, the album is filled with electro laden, hooked fill indie pop tracks that brings in a nice warm current to the winter time air. I don’t know what it is about French bands, maybe it’s the wine, maybe it’s the cuisine. All their music sounds so effortless and fun. Tahiti 80s new album is no exception. While it’s easy to compare this band to current French pop kings Phoenix, one has to remember that these bands have basically been around for the same amount of time. Luckily for us, Tahiti 80 is touring North America this year and you can make these comparisons yourself!

Tahiti 80 will be playing SXSW. Here are their scheduled times:

03/16, SXSW: Official Showcase @ 512 Rooftop
03/17, SXSW: Trumer Pills Afternoon Social @ Klub Krucial (1:30pm)
03/17, SXSW: BUREX Party Brush Square (5:00pm)

They have other dates. None of which is Toronto, sadly. Since I’m so nice I called up all these clubs and got the set times for you.

03/09 CHICAGO, IL The Abbey (11:30pm)
03/10 NEW YORK, NY Mercury Lounge (11:00pm)
03/12 SAN DIEGO, CA Bar Pink (10:30pm)
03/13 SAN FRANCISCO, CA Rickshaw Stop (10:45pm)
03/14 LOS ANGELES, CA Troubadour (10:00pm)

Here is a video for their new single

Darlin’ (Adam & Eve Song) from Tahiti 80 on Vimeo.

CMW / SXSW Preview: Austra

Posted on by Ricky in Canadian Music Week, South By Southwest | Leave a comment

Toronto – Watching the The Wedge last night, I was fully introduced to Austra, a new band featuring talented singer Katie Stelmanis. The song played was called Beat & The Pulse. The song was very appropriately named, as it had a ridiculously dirty beat that instantly captured my attention. Combined with Katie’s tremendous, sometimes haunting vocal work, this is one mesmerizing tune. The video captured the essense of the song nicely, coming across as a mix of a risqué American Apparel commercial (pointed out by Melody from Singing Lamb) and a scene from those illegal night clubs in Eastern Europe. You can watch the video here.

Austra’s debut album Feel It Break comes out May 17th on Paper Bag Records in Canada and on Domino Records everywhere else.

They will be playing at the Wrongbar on March 10th for Canadian Music Fest

The event page for that show is here

Their official showcase at SXSW will be March 17th, Emo’s Main Room, at 9:00 PM, although I suspect they’ll be playing 5 or 6 other shows like every band who makes it down there.

Austra – Beat & The Pulse (Extended Version) by DominoRecordCo