Steam Whistle Unsigned – The Burning Hell

Posted on by Wade in Concerts, Everything | 2 Comments

the burning hell
*The Burning Hell
(Toronto) This Friday night another installment of the Steam Whistle Unsigned charity concert series for the Artists’ Health Centre Foundation is happening. If you can manage the trek downtown, the lineup includes The Framework (new-wave rock), Lioness (soul-punk quartet) and The Burning Hell (electric-ukulele orchestra). We wrote about the Burning Hell earlier this year when Mathias Kom released his latest, Happy Birthday on Weewerk. The Burning Hell features Mathias on his electric ukulele and up to 12 people on stage. Has potential.

Friday, September 19th
Steam Whistle Brewing
(255 Bremner Blvd, across from the Skydome and CN Tower)
Doors at 8:00, tickets $5

I other beer news, here is a pretty useful how-to video I found lurking on the brewery’s site. Hey, if they don’t find you handsome, they should at least find you handy.

Concert Review: Goldfrapp, September 14th, Danforth Music Hall (Toronto)

Posted on by guestwriter in Concerts | 3 Comments

Written in conjunction with Christabel Jackson.

Toronto – With my New Year’s resolution of making 2008 my busiest year for concerts ever fresh in my mind, when I found a pair of tickets to Goldfrapp at the Danforth Music Hall offered to me at cost price, I quickly made an offer. One round trip to Royal York subway station and $90 in cash later and the rights to potentially see Alison Goldfrapp wear a horse’s tail on stage were mine.

I’ll tell you right now: The horse’s tail thing didn’t play out. Sorry. It’s history for real. It was still a good show though, and a polka-dotted muumuu made its appearance, so keep reading.

The Danforth Music Hall is a pretty ideal venue to watch a show like Goldfrapp. It’s large – slightly below the capacity of Massey Hall – but with far more comfortable permanent seats. Aside from the orchestra seating area, there’s a balcony for latecomers to use, as well as four box seats that are probably strictly for show. Seating was unassigned and first-come, first-serve, so my concert-going partner Christabel and I quickly established ourselves three quarters of the way back on the right side of the orchestra section. A well-stocked bar in the lobby ensured that drinks of every type were available, but bringing anything other than water bottles into the seating areas was restricted. I wasn’t in the mood for anything other than Dasani-branded Brampton tap water anyways. Shortly thereafter we were underway.

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Virgin Festival 2008 – Spiritualized, MGMT, Bloc Party

Posted on by Ricky in Concerts | 9 Comments

Toronto – What an exhausting weekend. Weekend festivals don’t give Ricky a time to relax, and now it’s Monday and I’m just so damn tired. So as you migh have guessed by now, this weekend was the third incarnation of the Virgin Festival here in Toronto. I was lucky enough to go as a media member and here are some random impressions of the set.

First off, let me say. The people at the Virgin Festival treated us well. We had all the spaces (wifi area, charging stations, photo access) we needed to do our work, our own ferry (well, the vip/media/artists had their own ferry). The registration was quick. It would have been quicker if Jian Gomeshi didn’t decide to skip the entire lineup process and go straight to the front of the line. But that’s CBC personalities for you. I think I most appreciated the fine folks at Baccardi. They were in charge of the dance tent and well, the Baccardi people had a tent with an open bar. That is very much appreciated, as Mojitos (w/ maple syrup!) are definitely a way to recharge your energy.

Saturday recap

Spiritualized – For some reason, Jason Pearce decided to take his sweet ass time, getting on stage about 15 minutes late. When you have a one hour-ish set, being 25% late is quite unacceptable. Despite the lateness, Spiritualized came out with backup singers and proceeded to lay on the space-rockness. Playing songs mostly from the last two albums to start off the set (including Sweet Talk), Spiritualized sounded pretty good. However, as the clock gravitated towards 5, I became distracted and ultimately, made my way over to the main stage to go see MGMT.

MGMT – Looking like extras from the 70s show, MGMT brought their retro inspired glam rock act to a pretty packed crowd on the mainstage. I have to say, they have quite a range of fans – from the teeny MTV crowd to ginos wearing sideways baseball caps and uber trimmed beards, everyone seemed to be really into their music. Playing all the songs they have in their arsenal, MGMT officially put people into “Festival” mode. People were dancing, fist in the air, that kind of stuff. Fans went into a frenzy for singles ‘Time to Pretend’, ‘Kids’ (with an extended guitar solo) and ‘Electric Youth’. Probably one of the highlights of the festival. I think I was correct in thinking they should have been slotted these guys a bit later.

Flosstradamus – Caught the end of this set, they seemed to have the crowd dancing. I wanted to catch the Sebastien DJ set, but he missed his flight. As did Switch. MSTRKRFT and Bang the Lime filled in admirably though, the dude from MSTRKRFT was channeling that Javier Bardem character from No Country for Old Men I think, only with a handlebar mustache.

Against Me They seemed to play good loud music. I was eating at this time.

Bloc Party – The English foursome came out as the sun was setting to a large crowd, and then immediately played some song. I’ll be honest, I was not expecting too much from Bloc Party, but they really impressed me. Not much for words though, as they barely said anything to the crowd the entire time. I guess when you have a limited time to play, you get down to business (It’s business…it’s business time). Playing songs from all three albums, it was pretty obvious that older songs like “Banquet”, “Helicopter” and “Like Eating Glass” were the most popular. Props to Kele for mentioning it’s Owen Pallett’s birthday (of Final Fantasy) and then complimenting his cover of the song “This Modern Love” before launching into the song itself. Overall, I came away from the Bloc Party set impressed with their ability to rock a crowd of this size, considering they are not really a traditional rock band.

The Kooks – Over on the other stage, The Kooks tried their hardest to not sound boring. I didn’t really see them, but I heard them sing ‘Eddies Gun’ and ‘Always Near Where I Need to Be’ while waiting for the ferry. I am sure a lot of girls swooned to them and it sounded quite like the album version, not a bad thing.

Overall, Saturday was a pretty good day for music, I would have liked to see Sebastien DJ, but MSTRKRFT in his own right is pretty good. Bloc Party were solid and MGMT was as good as advertised. I heard Foo Fighters was okay too.

Pictures to come.

Virgin Festival 08: Matt Costa and Moby

Posted on by Gary in Concerts | Leave a comment

Toronto – Well. Around the time that Vik reported about Oasis’ Noel being pushed on stage, we were walking out of the gig feeling a bit robbed. No Champagne Supernova, and an acoustic Don’t Look Back In Anger. I suggested if each person who purchased a ticket gets to punch the guy once, he’d be very very sorry.
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