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CMW March 12: Sirius Satellite Showcase, El Mocambo

Posted on by guestwriter in Canadian Music Week, Concerts | 3 Comments

Toronto – Canadian Music week is in full swing in the heart of the city this weekend. Although sparse in the early part of the evening, the Elmo soon filled up on Thursday night for a French Canadian extravaganza hosted by Sirius Satellite Radio.

Duchess Says

Duchess Says

We arrived in the midst of the cacophony of Duchess Says, where singer Annie-Claude was serenading the crowd with her unique brand of intense scream-singing metal and dance punk. Thankfully the set was a mix of anger metal and dance-punk, which was a much more head-boppably well received. Extra points for her stage presence, but this girl is one crazy version of Peaches. Instead of hurling obscenities, she spits a melange of beer and gum.

This girl is one crazy version of Peaches. Instead of hurling osbcenities, she spits a melange of beer and gum.

Extra points for her over-the-top stage presence. At one point we thought there was some crazy drunk in the midst of the crowd causing a ruckus by hurling beer with abandon. We were expecting the bouncers to come in and deal, but then realized it was little wrath-of-Annie herself; dancing and rolling on the floor, grabbing innocent bystanders and showering them with dance punk and beer. Well done. There were no chewing-gum-hair casualties during the making of this set.

Radio Radio

Radio Radio

Next up was Radio Radio—an electronic rapping foursome from New Brunswick, recently coming of a performance at the East Coast Music Awards. This Acadian troupe sang in Chiac, a uniquely Canadian dialect of English and French—a little something we’d like to call Franglais. Although full of energy, we found the whole enchilada to be frat-boyish. One of the pledglings, Timo, sported a handlebar moustache and regaled us with stories in French about birthday parties at strip clubs. This Little man was not unlike a small horny Chihuahua that’s humping your leg that you just can’t shake off. The thought occurred to us even before he fulfilled prophecy by humping the stage. Timo, small doses only please.

We Are Wolves

We Are Wolves

From hip-hop, we moved to the music of Montreal based We Are Wolves. This band appeared on the very same stage last summer for NXNE where they were plagued with technical difficulties that caused several false starts. Thankfully this time around the absence of sound issues allow them to bring their A-game.

It was minimalist electron-rock at its best. Judging from their albums, you’d never guess that this complete sound was emanating from a three-piece. They keep it real with a simple setup: a sparse drum-set with a nary a stool to sit on, a lone guitarist/bassist, and keys. The band’s happier mood definitely made for a better performance. However, not much else seemed to be different between this and their NXNE showcase. There hasn’t been much new material since then, but that didn’t detract from a solid set.

It was minimalist Electron-rock at its best.

Malajube

Malajube

Closing out the night was French Indie starlings Malajube. This band has garnered a lot of attention since their debut album, Trompe-L’oeil. There was a musical lyricism that was missing from the night until the opening of this set. Their sound was reminiscent of a blend of Quebecois Trucker meets 80’s progrock reborn into these little indie adorables.

Big thumbs up on the grandiose sound, however thumbs down on the epileptic light-show. It was out of place for this intimate venue. Their sound and musicianship was all that was needed to attract the attention of the media and music aficionados looking for the next up and coming Canadian darlings.

Overall the showcase was strong, diverse, and well-assembled.

Unapologetically French.

Duchess Says: 3.5/5

Radio Radio: 3/5

We Are Wolves: 4/5

Malajube: 4.25/5

(Covered by Patricia and Mark)

Concert Review: Lightspeed Champion, March 4, Horseshoe

Posted on by Ricky in Concerts | Leave a comment

Toronto – WTF IS WITH THIS WEATHER! Its March. There should not be snow on the ground. I am starting to feel like those people in the Day After Tommorrow. It’s cold. Its wet. Its miserable. All these people coming here for Canadian Music Week are never going to come back. Unless they are from other parts of Canada, then I guess it just feels like home.

Even the crappy weather was not enough to stop me from attending the free Lightspeed Champion show last night at the Horseshoe. If I had to pay for the show though…. So yea, NME approved Lightspeed Champion played a free show last night at the Horseshoe. The weather was crappy outside, but I was warmed up by a nice batch of Duff wings, which left my tongue without any feeling. Luckily, I did not go for Death wings, like the people I was with did. Actually, if I had eaten death wings, I could have probably put a match by my ass and light a fire pretty easily and warm the hell up.

The crowd was rather small considering how much hype this guy has been getting lately. However, I don’t really know whats real hype, and what is ‘internet’ hype. I guess considering the weather, this was an okay crowd. Dev Hynes, the lead singer, came out with a violinist at around 9:35. Which pleased me since I was not in a mood for a late show. Thats all this band was, Dev, wearing the finest rat hair hat he could find and a sweater his grandma probably gave him, and his buddy, the violinist. Despite the lack of drums, bass and everything else though, they proceeded to play about 6 or 7 songs, including a cover of the Strokes – Heart in a Cage.

How did the music sound? it was quite good. His album is very stripped down anyways, and relies much on catchy choruses and melodies. This setup was very fitting for him I think. Also, the dude is hilarious. He had no setlist, made a bunch of jokes and told some good stories. Its refreshing to see someone on stage who seems like someone you’d joke around with at a bar or something. For example, he introduced a song about prostitution, saying its from a view of a prostitute. He then said, its not a song about like condoning prostitution and hes not trying to make a statement or anything, finishing with the words ‘im not that deep’. Fuck man, me neither.

So whats the verdict? its a free show. So thats an automatic 3 stars in my book. Combine that with decent tunes and good showsmanship, I think its a 4 star show, -0.5 stars for the weather

3.5/5

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