Pop Montreal

Preview: Pop Montreal [Sept. 29 – Oct. 3, 2010]

Posted on by Paul in Pop Montreal | 4 Comments

So it’s that time of year again – time for Pop Montreal, now in it’s 9th year and still bringing you a fine selection of bands old and new.  The Panic Manual will be there and as a service to those of you who will also be attending, here are the bands that I think are worth seeing.  Perhaps you will agree.

Wednesday, Sept. 29

Menomena/Suckers/Tu Fawning @ Sala Rossa:  Ricky’s a big fan of  Suckers and I’ve heard a bit of buzz about Menomena.

Glen Matlock @ Divan Orange:  The original bassist for the Sex Pistols will be playing tunes from his latest album Born Running.  Who knows, maybe he’ll throw in a Sex Pistols or Rich Kids tune along the way.

Gigi French @ Quai des Brunes:  This woman has been through 1000 musical identities before stopping at her current incarnation as a jazzy French pop singer.  Her song Jardinier is kind of catchy.  Check her out before she changes genres again.

Look At What The Light Did Now @ Ukranian Federation: Or if you’re in the mood to sit back and enjoy a film, why not check out Anthony Seck’s documentary about the making of Feist’s The Reminder?

Thursday, October 30

Karkwa @ Metropolis:  If you’re an anglophone from outside Quebec, you’re probably wondering who the hell those guys were who won the Polaris Prize this year.  Well, it’s these guys.  Check them out to see if they’ve got the goods live.

SappyFest Suitcase @ Cagibi: So many great performers in this showcase presented by the Sackville, NB based Sappyfest, mostly of the solo singer/songwriter variety.  Shotgun Jimmie, Dan Romano, Fred Squire and Snailhouse are all great. 

The Hoa Hoa’s @ L’Abreuvoir:  The Toronto band plays a sort of shoegazey, melodic brand of psych rock that draws from a wide range of influences spanning from the ’60s to the ’80s and ’90s and beyond.  They’re part of a pretty interesting bill featuring among others Turbogeist (featuring the son of a Rolling Stone) and a band called USA Out Of Vietnam, who are worth seeing for their retro-protesty name alone and for the fact that they have no website or Myspace or anything.  Perhaps they are luddites.  Or time-travelling 1960s war protesters who don’t understand what this “internet” thing is all about.

Municipal Waste @ Club Soda: I can’t let a festival like this go by without checking out just a little bit of metal and these guys seem like just what the doctor ordered.  The Richmond, Virginia based band’s form of retro-thrash has been dubbed “party metal,” their press photo has them all wearing bathrobes for some reason, and drummer Dave Witte is pretty much amazing.  Joining them will be Detroit hardcore legends Negative Approach, who are also worth a looksee.

Bear In Heaven @ La Sala Rossa:  An indie rock band from Brooklyn is not such a rare thing these days, but they’ve got a pretty interesting sound and they’re proof that bands haven’t run out of animal based names yet.

Van Dyke Parks/Clare and the Reasons @ Ukranian Federation:  This guy has worked with Brian Wilson (and had his lyrics poo pooed by Mike Love, perhaps the douchiest of The Beach Boys), arranged for Joanna Newsom, and cowrote the songs for the Popeye movie (which is kind of an odd film, but totally worth watching).  He’s a pop legend of sorts and well worth checking out.

Friday, Oct 1

Danielson/Deerhoof @ La Tulipe:  Two bands that are definitely originals.  Expect some interesting stuff sonically.

The xx @ Place des Arts:  If you can show me photographic evidence of this band smiling at their show even once, I will totally buy you a beer. 

Swans @ Le National:  These guys are legends.  Their new album, My Father Will Guide Me Up A Rope To The Sky is really good too.  I expect  this one to get pretty noisy.  Get there early for opener Lily Fawn, who usually wears antlers when she performs.  Strangely, she’ll also be opening for Fred Penner on Sunday.  That shows she’s diverse.

Technical Kidman @ 3 Minots:  For the name alone.

Saturday, Oct. 2

Marnie Stern @ Cabaret Juste Pour Rire:  Marnie Stern is a ridiculously good guitar player.  One might even say she shreds.  And her songs are quite good too – quirky and noisy, yet kind of poppy too.  Parlovr are on this bill as well and they put on a great show.

Atari Teenage Riot @ Foufounes Electriques:  I haven’t listened to Alec Empire’s insanely over the top digital hardcore band in a long time but I recall liking their stuff quite a bit back in the day.  Hopefully they play “Deutchland (Has Gotta Die).”  Opening for them will be Montreal Nintendo Orkestar.  They make music using two Nintendo DS units. 

Light Fires @ Divan Orange: Gentleman Reg and Ohbijou’s James Bunton play electro-pop.

Solange: Sadly, what would have been one of the highlights is just not gonna happen.  Beyonce’s less famous yet arguably more interesting sister has cancelled her appearance at Pop Montreal.  Too bad.

Sunday, Oct. 3

Sacred Sunday @ Ukranian Federation:  Yes, Patrick Watson and friends will be playing gospel music.  This should prove to be interesting, especially since one of these friends is Klezmer/Hip Hop guy Socalled.

Immolation/Vader @ Foufounes Electriques:  Or if your Sunday music tastes veer less toward the heavenly and more towards the blasphemous, check out some old school death metal.


Concert Review: Hot Chip, Pop Montreal, Oct 1, Metropolis

Posted on by Mark in Concerts, Pop Montreal | Leave a comment

Hot Chip

Montreal – So there I was in Montreal for the Hot Chip show last Wednesday at the Metropolis. Before I talk about Hot Chip, let me first tell you about the Metropolis. Even though I haven’t yet been to many of Montreal’s live music venues. I can tell you one thing, the Metropolis rocks!

The Metropolis is an amazing old building with a balcony. It’s large enough to host a decent crowd but can still offer a relatively intimate live music experience. First constructed in 1884 as a skating rink, the Metropolis has also moonlighted as a movie theatre, a theatre house, a discotheque, and even a porn house! Is there anything this building can’t do? The answer is no.

So anyway, before I talk about Hot Chip, let me next tell you about Pop Montreal. Pop Montreal is a great 5-day international music festival in our favourite sister city: Montreal. There’s all sorts of great live music over the city in great venues. After experiencing Toronto’s music festivals like CMW and NXNE, I have to say that my first impression of Pop Montreal was that it was a relatively grassroots and low-key affair. Most of the venues I went to were extremely intimate, and the tickets were very accessible in terms of price and availability.

OK, so how was Hot Chip? The show was certainly one of the more anticipated shows at Pop Montreal this year. This London-based band showcased their brand of very danceable rock to a crowd of enthusiastic fans. I kind of wish that “Over and Over”, being an amazingly fun song to dance to, would have occurred somewhere later in the set (or in the encore) instead of mid-set. But apparently they always do that, so I suppose they’re not going to mess with a formula that works. Their encore included a rendition of “Nothing Compares to You”. A nice little retro throwback combined with sly wink that this up and coming band doesn’t take itself too seriously. Nicely done.

Metropolis: 5/5
Hot Chip: 4.5/5
Pop Montreal: 4.5/5