Technophilic Norwegian duo Datarock (who's newest song titled, simply and effectively "newest song", and has some fairly obvious lyrical swipes from Japan new-wave group The Plastics) perform tonight at the suburban church-like Main Hall (5390 St. Laurent) along with lupid also-rans, We Are Wolves and Statuepark. $8.
Tuesday, November 30, 2004
Monday, November 29, 2004
San Francisco's Tussle is a group who's name will be on your lips pretty soon for one of two reasons (if they're not already)... The first and least relevant being that bassist Andy is currently touring as a member of hug-happy Devandra Banhart's band, and the second being that their debut album is full of dubbed out polyrhythmic tracks, bringing to mind certain Killing Joke tracks, Cabaret Voltaire's hypnotic Breathe Deep (from 2x45, one of my favourite albums), Liquid-Liquid and more recent updates on such sounds, like the DFA-produced Pixeltan track Get Up/Say What. In other word, more of the same of what I've been listening to for the past three years or so.
TroublemanUnlimited jumped on the group, and has released the Don't Stop EP, Eye Contact 12", the Here It Comes 12" (with locked-groove remixes on the B-side) and most recently, the Kling Klang LP.
Sunday, November 28, 2004
Last night's event, the first ever at the 100-Sided Die, was pretty fun all in all, though still suffering from a hangover I wasn't able to muster up enough energy to stick around for the post-performance iTuned dance party. Another time, perhaps. Wolf Parade was the highlight of the night, of course, but a rejuvenated AIDSWolf pulled off an impressive performance, specifically in comparison to their splinter group, Cousins of Reggae, who performed prior to them. Uninspired and banal, self-indulgent noise that brings to mind just what you think when I type that. Of course, a noise band is possibly the easiest target for off-handed criticism (the exact sort of criticism I specialize in, in fact). Though the genre's barnhouse is packed to the rafters with black-clad misanthropes, largely indifferent (perhaps hostile) to the opinions of anyone other than their own cardre of friends, they're still desperately seeking post-humous recognition for their groundbreaking grade 11 band's debut, hopefully in the form of a re-issue with liner notes by Thurston Moore or Byron Coley.
I snapped some photographs of Wolf Parade, which I'll post when I get around to developing the roll. They played one request, the NewMusicCanada favourite Dinner Bells and a couple of new songs, which were more than likely debuted on their West Coast dates earlier this month.
The Tödliche Doris, early to mid-80s group of German avant-garde noise no-wavists... Grew out from the Throbbing Gristle/ENB mold into something uniquely their own, reaching a pinnacle with the release of a 1986 LP "Seches" (Six) meant to be played along with the 1984 LP "Unsichtbare" (Our Debut), which was thematically about an ambitious pop/new-wave group's Faustian bargain. Of mention before that was the 1983 "Chöre & Soli" release - a package of 8 toy records (sparse, elliptical recordings of children's songs) along with a battery-powered "miniphone" device that played the records (photographed above). Jesus...
Stümmel mir from the untitled LP, released in 1982.
Not True from the 1986 "Seches" LP.
Friday, November 26, 2004
Last night I dreamt that I was on an island in California with my friend Chris, eating a pickles and fish from a jar, and having a conversation with Frank Zappa, who told us that we didn't have to worry about snakes when we were walking around in the tall glass with barefeet because since the Kennedy's came out to California, all of the snakes had been removed. Was that some sort of subtle dream-time stab at Irish Catholicism? Below's a well-loved track...
Tomorrow (Saturday) night will mark the return of Wolf Parade to Montreal and the opening of a new collectively run art-space and venue, in the same building as the Gray Room, dubbed the 100-Sided Die. Spearheaded by Chloe and Yannick of Seripop, and Matt Moroz and Morag (who's last name has escaped me, sorry), with (I'm sure) plenty of help from other like-minded folk. Other bands are AIDS Wolf, the digeridoo combo DIDGERIDOOM and Cousins of Reggae. Doors at 10pm, $5 to get in. Come on time, lest ye be left behind.
Room 1202 - 5334 de Gaspe
Also this weekend, Expozine and the SAT's annual record-swap on Sunday.
Thursday, November 25, 2004
I have to admit something that's been burdening my soul as of late - I've only been candid about it with my girlfriend, and she's mocked me for it (Deriding it as "such a European pop song.") After at first dismissing them, I've become quite enamored with France's Phoenix. I fell in love with the "Holdin On Together" track off of their most recent album, Alphabetical. Very slick R&B production, polished pop motifs, percussive sandpaper. I didn't give them much of a listen, but I remember Steve Bays being a huge admirer of The Push Kings, and though I loathed it at the time, I think it sounded a bit like this. Maybe I should give them another try, too.
Roman Coppola (son of Francis, director of the stylistically confusing but somewhat entertaining "CQ") directed a video for "Everything Is Everything," linked here in Real Audio Format.
They'll be heading to our Francophobic trading partners to the south, the United States at the end of this month, with (unfortunately) no scheduled dates in Canada. They've been adding new dates quite frequently, though, so ashamed Montrealers may be offered the opportunity to indulge themselves.
Sorry for the lack of mp3s, I'll try to put one up in the next couple of days...
Wednesday, November 24, 2004
I'm almost loathe to give this track away, just because I harbour such a deep and abiding love for it, but I'm sure plenty of you have already heard it, and Ice T put it on that absurd compilation of West Coast tracks he released a couple of years back (followed nicely by a fifteen minute conversation with a British faux-interviewer in which he talks about foreign policy ("eat a bowl of dicks") and the true lyrical depths and insight in his killer track Let's Get Buck Naked And Fuck), so it's pretty much fair game now.
Souls of Mischief - 93 Til Infinity
It's obviously the ultimate summer track, far beyond DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince's Summertime... Laid-back, backpacker stuff, members of the Bay Area's Heiroglyphics crew, and easily the best stuff that crew's put out.
Monday, November 22, 2004
L-R: Nicholas Diamonds and Jesse F. Keeler, during a rare tender moment.
PopMontreal fuhrer and best brother ever Dan Seligman, usually seen about town in shorts, will be DJing against The Unicorns' Nicholas Diamonds, former film-school student and evangalical Christian. Described as "the ultimate battle. Ska vs. Funk. Sam Roberts vs. Tragically Hip. Arcade Fire vs Modest Mouse. Hair vs. Cut. Randy Macho Man Savage vs. Ted Dibiase. The Stills vs. The Undercovers. Statue Park vs. Echo Kitty, Korova vs. GreenRoom. DKD vs. Constellation, Dizzee Rascal vs. Old Dirty Bastard," the promo fails to make mention of the other, more salacious dichotomy that exists in this Steel Wheel matchup, that is, Lapsed Christian vs. Lapsed Jew!
Tuesday, November 23rd @ Korova (3908 St. Laurent)
Related mp3s!The Unicorns - Les Os.mp3
The Stars - Ageless Beauty.mp3
Statue Park - Sex Batteries.mp3
Echo Kitty - Goelands.mp3
Sunday, November 21, 2004
If memory serves me correct, I believe that Future Proof off of Massive Attack's 100th Window samples the below Durutti Column song, Smile In The Crowd." I only managed to hear the album once, while incredibly stoned in the back of an acquaintance's sports-car, riding to Nanaimo. My friend Bill Stuart (he of Victoria's Monday Magazine) had driven me and another fellow up, but his car broke down prior to the end of the Malahat, and after finding our way to a bizarre country-inn, the other fellow arranged for myself and him to get a ride from his brother to Nanaimo. After foolishly agreeing to have some of the marijuana the two were smoking, I sat paralyzed in the back of the car, feeling a little too freaked out by the Massive Attack album and the speed of the car. I couldn't recall how to get to Ken's place, so I had them drop me off in a mall parking lot close to his house. It took me an hour to cross the parking lot (which wasn't that big), and I only credit my making it at all to there being a Dairy Queen on the other side. I don't really smoke marijuana. Obviously...
Durutti Column - Smile In The Crowd.mp3
...And on the nostalgic tip, here's a Ride track. I came to Ride a little late, and in a little untraditionally - while living in Victoria, I picked up a copy of Carnival of Light, that most critically reviled of their albums, (split in half between the two feuding songwriters) at Ditch Records and immediately became fixated on it. At this point I've subjected too many of my friends (and neighbouring strangers) to an extended monologue on the beauty and sublime nature of this album, so I won't repeat myself, but if you're a Ride fan and have out-of-hand dismissed the album, I urge you to re-examine it.
I happened upon some Yoko Ono mp3s on Rhetoricpig... Stuff from 1983, I can't link to the post directly, so I'll link to the mp3s below, but you should really go check out the website, too.
Let The Tears Dry.mp3
I See Rainbows.mp3
I didn't manage to get to the St. Henri vernissage last night for Matt & Jim's household creation (with the Sons of Warsaw: Bartek and Krzysztof DJing), but it's around for quite some time yet. There's a story in the most recent Mirror's Arts section.
Friday, November 19, 2004
Below's an amazing Yoko Ono track, a rarity available in a couple of places - in the recently released box-set and the 1992 "Walking On Thin Ice" collection. Nice evening outside - go and enjoy the relatively balmy weather.
Yoko Ono - O'oh.mp3
Novelty version of Lou Reed's Walk On The Wild Side.mp3
I'll be DJing tonight @ The W Hotel's Wunderbar (901 Square Victoria), come on by...
Wednesday, November 17, 2004
Last night was the grand opening of the W Hotel in Old Montreal. Fittingly housed in the old Bank of Canada building, where they incinerated the money. 1000 people plus tossing back far too many cocktails and glasses of champagne at the open bars, oysters and pastries upstairs. One gentleman, positioned by the Oyster bar, told me in heavily accented French, that this was "the place to be in Montreal," and I nodded while my companion Derek berated him with anecdotes about the difficulty of novel writing. (Derek later passed out on the couch in the Wunderbar and was helpfully escorted outside, where he tried to force his way into a Hummer).
And tonight I'll be DJing there - from around 10:30 till 3:30 or so, dropping the post-punk/new-wave/hip-hop/soul/psych/garage pastiche mix you've heard every night out for the past two years or so. 901 Square Victoria.
Tuesday, November 16, 2004
It's a bit late, but if I'm reading this correctly, a writer at tinymixtapes named Mr. Emo referred to evolution as "so-called science" in a blurb about Greg Gaffin's PhD dissertation. Jesus Christ, they really are in trouble down in the United States! With all this emphasis on Creationism, I'm counting the months until Alchemy is the next belief based on "established faiths" to be taught in American high schools.
Sunday, November 14, 2004
If anyone denies the true value of the internet as a medium for the open and valuable discussion of the political matters of the day, they probably haven't been exposed to the two hot-spots of interaction and strong-headed discourse on the internet right now... sorryeverybody.com and werenotsorry.com (I assume there's a missing apostrophe there).
A typically opinionated American (in national dress) throws his two-cents into the heated "E-Debate" on post-electoral apologies.
"What for the documentary film?" / "What for the Youth?" / "What for the Toronto Media Professional?"
The 7th annual Recontres internationales du documentaire de Montreal is still on until Sunday, November 21st... With the exception of a documentary on tree-planters, tomorrow looks like as promising a day as any other to check the offerings out. More info on the page, of course.
Until September of 2005, the McCord Museum of Canadian History will be exhibiting Growing Up In Montreal, exploring "the daily lives of young urban-dwellers in the last century", and more than likely not mentioning the formation of Vice Magazine. A fine companion for that is the NFB film, Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr. Leonard Cohen, now available on DVD. Cohen walks and stalks the streets of his native Montreal in the early 1960s, speaking in a clipped and delicate manner, discussing his love of latenight dining at Ben's Montreal Deli.
A Candid Photograph of Members of Canada's Media Cabal
Interns, students, job-hunters and cranky bloggers have only two days left to plan their infiltration of the MediaBistro's Drinks for Toronto Media Professionals shindy. Smoking pot in the bathroom with Heather Mallick, a Merlot-soaked fracas with Leah McLaren, round-table discussion on Barbara Amiel's oral sex techniques, Evan Solomon and jello shooters? Hit the page up and falsify references for a splendid Tuesday evening.
Vancouver artist Mark DeLong now has a website!
Portland, Oregon's The Prids are a group of who've been busy in that corner of North America for a number of years penning world-shaking, sweeping songs with equal parts post-punk, new-wave and shoegazing allusions. The easiest and more obvious points of reference are Wire, My Bloody Valentine and Echo & The Bunnymen (ubiquitiously), but there's something a little more earnest and valuable than PoMo pastiche going on here, evident in a couple of the songs that I'll post below.
When I lived in Victoria, I heard of the Prids thanks to Jack Duckworth - I was playing in a band called Ghosts at the time and he invited us over to play with The Prids and his group, A Luna Red at the Pic Pub in Vancouver. The Prids had brought along an affable Chicagoan with a apple green Dodge Charger who spoke knowledgeably of the history of the American twenty-five cent piece, and they played a sparkling and shimmering set, complete with epileptic-fit inducing light-show. The next time I saw them, my friend Dan and I put a show on for them in Victoria, and their light-show and amplifiers blew the fuses at Logan's, cutting their set short.
The Prids - Love Zero.mp3 from the Love Zero EP.
West Coast residents can catch The Prids in Seattle on November 28th, while most East Coasters will have to wait until they fill out the dates around their appearance at the Magnum PR showcase in New York on the 16th of December.
Saturday, November 13, 2004
Thursday, November 11, 2004
I skimmed over an Edward Said essay last night in an Adorno Reader book I picked up - rambles on a bit about Adorno speaking of the lateness (and proximity to death) of Beethoven's final works being supremely artistic, assaults on bourgeoisie society - not so much shattered, splintered and unfinished, but rather exploded pieces that pointed to the way towards Schoenberg's work... Made sense. Anyway, voices and pianos and strings below.
Symphony 8 in F Major, Allegretto Scherzando.mp3 Jaunty!
From Sergei Rachmaninov's Opus 37, Blazhen muzh (Blessed Is Man).mp3
From Sergei Rachmaninov's Opus 3/2, The Bells of Moscow - Prelude in C sharp Minor.mp3 The ever-popular piano piece
Billie Holiday - Gloomy Sunday
The Kinks - Afternoon Tea.mp3
Adriano Celentano - 24000 Baci.mp3
Lagoons, swaddled babe of proud father David Lindquist (and step-papa Etienne Alexander), redefines the omnipresent lo-fi bedroom aesthetic (brings it outdoors, lets it breathe, run around, get some sunshine), smothers it in a despondent and morose new-wave fog (in the vein of The Cure's "Disintegration") and then revives it with airy synthesizers and studio trickery culled from the back catalogue of Lee Perry. Add to that some of the psych-pop allusions of the Bevis Frond, some cabaret leanings, and the listener finds her or himself knee-deep in some moody, evocative swamp. Barely out of the starting gates (Lagoons has been around only since this summer), if the duo manages to board the Tsawwassen-Swartz Bay ferry route every now and then to prostelyze and convert, there should be little lacking for the group in the way of appreciative fans or fawning critics. One imagines a natural kinship with Vancouver's My Project: Blue, who also have V. Island origins.
The group's next performance is later this month (November 27th) in Victoria, BC at the Gary Oak Room, with The Redscare and Pushing Up Daisies.
Lagoons - Our Love Is True.mp3
Lagoons - Bathroom Wall.mp3
Wednesday, November 10, 2004
Tobias Carroll edits The Scowl blog and also writes and reviews for publications like Earlash, The Copper Press and Rocket Fuel. A while back he gave this blog a mention, and I'd like to do the same, though admittedly I'm a bit late in reciprocating...
From his blog, you'll be able to get access to pieces he's done on Radio Berlin, Lion Fever, Pleasure Forever, Frog Eyes and the lumbering psych-rock giants of the West Coast Black Mountain, amongst others... As well, plenty of blog-like stuff.
I caught Hot Snakes last night at the Sala Rossa - a set of just over 20 songs from all 3 albums, including a 4 song encore, delivered in a quick and clipped manner without any unnecessary stage banter or theatrics. Rick Froeberg looked a bit like an angry Stephen Wright and the place was packed, testament to the cross-genre appeal of the group, which attracted both the Franco-garage and post-hardcore crowds, but not so many females, which probably goes to prove my earlier assertion about the Hot Snakes/Drive Like Jehu pairing being to this generation what Shellac/Big Black was to the one previous.
Your favourite Bote-Noire clerk tells me that Dan Bejar (ya know, Destroyer!) is in town, possibly renting movies with his mother. Below are some random mp3s, pretty standard stuff. Russians love Nick Cave.
Sonic Youth - Victoria.mp3 (A Kinks cover, from 1988 Peel Sessions)
Echo & The Bunnymen - Bring On The Dancing Horses.mp3
Nick Cave - Red Right Hand.mp3
Bauhaus - Bela Lugosi's Dead.mp3
Christian Death - Romeo's Void.mp3
Queer Crypto-Fascist Corner!
Death In June - What Ends.mp3
Death In June - All Pigs Must Die
Boyd Rice & Friends - People.mp3
Current 93 - Holy Holy Holy.mp3
The Legendary Pink Dots - Neon Mariners.mp3
First there was Crisis, the lefty political punk band. Shortly thereafter, Death In June formed, with Douglas Pearce, Tony Wakeford and Patrick Leagas. They released The Guilty Have No Pride and Burial before Wakeford left for his rather erratic and more-miss-than-hit Sol Invictus. After Nada, Leagas left as well, joining 6th Comm... After that, Pearce carried on, conspiring with like-minded sorts, such as David Tibet (Current 93), Boyd Rice and whatever plump and pasty music nerd with a buzzcut might be around to great effect, essentially charting a whole genre of creepy as hell, pseudo-nationalist groups (such as Michael Moynihan's* Blood Axis
) that exists concurrently with Nick Cave, has some roots in the droning solo albums of Nico and the writings of 19th century neo-Pagans on pre-Christian civilizations, and makes a great deal many allusions, in album design and performance, to an idea of a mythologized Europe that never existed. Of course, putting all that into a blender, and adding a dash of misanthropism, is a fairly solid recipe for an ideological musical form that recalls, oh, I don't know, the Nazis, but really, there's nothing to worry about from these people, unless you live in Eastern Europe or Russia. People care about this stuff there, although I can only speculate whether Death In June fans will ever reach the level of fanaticism that characterizes the Manowar fanbase, whereas in North America, most fans will be kids who put the Magic (The Gathering!) cards away at an earlier age than their friends and picked up a Nietzsche book.
*Some more astute readers might recall Moynihan as the author of "The Lords of Chaos", a book which chronicled the Northern European Black Metal scene, and which, having read, one imagines was written with a smirk on the author's face.
And all of this brings us to tomorrow night, when, after Devandra Banhart and 6 Organs of Admittance perform a hallucinogenically-inspired set of Olde Invisible Folke ballads and Mountain Songs, Pavilion Projects will present (in co-operation with PopMontreal and Warrior Magazine) The Ten Commandments at Korova, from 12-4am. The Ten Commandments is the plural manifestation of one singular David Lewkewitch, former resident of Victoria, BC and source-point for songs about Rivers of Blood and Divine Retribution. In the lineup, Ami Brousseau (formerly of Victoria's Ghosts), ConU film grad Matthew Law, visual artist Michael Doerksen and saw-player Samara. In the wings, Michael Gira and Young God Records?
Monday, November 08, 2004
I'm 24 minutes into this "Anchorman" film, and I really can't muster up any enthusiasm to laugh about it... Juvenille humour I've got no real problem with (I mourn the passing of Mr. Show as much as anyone else), but this really isn't funny. Is there some vindication on the way in the next hour or so?
20 minutes later... Nope, still not very funny. Remember when people loved Dana Carvey?
SERIPOP EATING photograph by guy talked about below...
I think the Marauder's a two piece. They're from Toronto, that Mammon to the West of our Montreal, beloved and enlightened Venice. Konrad takes photos (look here and above, at the photo of the Seripop Twins) and gets photos taken of him, and I don't know about the other guy.
The Marauder - A Song.mp3
The Marauder is now a one piece, myself. The other guy is in Ninja High School now. Too cool for school. Our last show was this past Wednesday at Rancho Relaxo. I did a puppet show, HBO like biography on the history of the Marauder.
If any of you are interested, it's available @ http://www.konradj.com/fin.mp3.
Also, happy birthday to Konrad!
Saturday, November 06, 2004
Hmm. Some election, huh? Oh well, the Canadian dollar's doing well and Hot Snakes are playing in Montreal on Tuesday. Below's some more DFA idolatry (the first LCD Soundsystem track from 2001 and an UNKLE remix) and a truly wretched Spanish version of New Order's Bizarre Love Triangle.
LCD Soundsystem - Losing My edge.mp3
Unkle - In A State.mp3
Clotta - Triangulo de Amor Bizarro.mp3