Archive for the ‘Music’ Category
The wonderful folks at Ottawa Fringe Festival have been bringing the free live music programming. Last year, it was The Elwins and this year is Crissi Cochrane. To my own surprise, I didn’t expect her to be in Ottawa. I usually get into a semi-NXNE withdrawal and would need some live music to bring on the recovery.
For those who don’t know, Cochrane is originally from Halifax, Nova Scotia but is living in Windsor, Ontario since 2010. She has made a great 2014 as she released her second full-length album, Little Sway in January and was in the top 10 of CBC Music Searchlight contest.
It was my first time to see her perform live in Ottawa. I did see her perform at an unofficial fan picnic in Toronto’s Trinity-Bellwoods Park last year. It’s her first time playing in Ottawa.
The setting at Fringe Fest’s Downtown Rideau Stage was quite intimate. Cochrane played some tracks from her current album and played cover tracks from the likes of Billie Holliday, Amy Winehouse and The Bee Gees. Her style of music brought an influence of jazz, soul and R&B. It was definitely a nice Thursday night to go out and enjoy live music.
You can check out the photos posted over at Flickr.
There was lots happening in the downtown core. The TD Ottawa Jazz Festival had the legendary Earth, Wind and Fire while Mugshots had the Rehab Pizza Party with Ottawa’s Silkken Laumann playing and a DJ set by Cadence Weapon. Exciting times in the Nation’s Capital with festivals going on.
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It started last year when I brought along the Fujifilm Instax and shot some instant photos. It became more a fun thing to do and to bring some nostalgia. Since digital photography is more prevalent, I decided to shoot with analog photographs to make things interesting. The response has been brought with surprise.
For the 2014 edition of NXNE, I decided to bring along the Polaroid camera and stacks of The Impossible Project films in various coloured frames. It was to provide shots to the artists, bands and friends as a way to cherish memories. I finally tried out the Black & White film for the SX-70 camera and it looked vibrant. I had been weary of using black & white because it didn’t interest but I found out that it develops faster than color. It has this artistic feel to it.
it was great to bring stacks as a few of the packs were made in late 2013 and best to use them as soon as possible.
Overall, it’s nice to bring some old-school flavour into photography.
I took photos at a couple of shows, at the CBC Radio 3 Fan Picnic and from Saturday’s MiO Squirtcar. Also in one of the photos, I got to meet one of The Strombo Show team during NXNE.
You can view the photos from below. There’s one photo that didn’t turn out too good due to the bright sunlight.
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It was an exciting weekend being in Toronto and attending NXNE. What I forgot to mention in the previous entry that the festival celebrated its 20th anniversary this year and it’s a become a major hub for the Toronto music scene and abroad.
Onto the events I went to on Saturday. The first was attending the unofficial CBC Radio 3 Fan Picnic in Trinity-Bellwoods Park. This year, Grant Lawrence was unable to host it as he’s busy with the CBC Beetle Roadtrip Sessions. In his place was the lovely Lana Gay. The performers for this year were the Ottawa band, Loon Choir and Vancouver’s Skye Wallace. It was a fun time and good to see people that I know that were at the picnic.
After the picnic, I headed off to the Microsoft Surface Cafe. It’s a coffee shop where the company offered a first look of the Surface Pro 3. I was there for the Surface Harmony with the 2014 Polaris Music Prize Long List nominee, The Darcys. Jason Couse performed several tracks at the coffee shop and chatted along with bandmate, Wes Marksell about their musical upbringing and other things. It was quite an intimate setting and great to surprise them in showing up for the support.
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What a way to end April on a soggy note. Things weren’t too bad as I went to Mercury Lounge on Wednesday night for Jessy Lanza. On a previous entry, Lanza’s opener was suppose to be Ricky Eat Acid but due to a change, it was local DJ, Jas Nasty who helped spin groovy tunes on a rainy Wednesday night. Overall, it was a great show and there was a good turnout as the crowd enjoyed and danced to the electro-R&B tunes from Lanza. I was checking on Instagram and someone said that she sounded like the late Aaliyah’s secret love child.
It was also good to see people from the likes of Eventful Capital and a few members of Fevers attend the event.
As usual, you can view some photos below. There’s two black & white instant photos that I shot and it was used by The Impossible Project.
It’s been awhile I have written something about music. For those who haven’t been in the know of things, I no longer host a weekly radio show due to differences with the campus community radio station. They haven’t dealt with me on the issue and that’s all I will say for the time being.
Onto the music side of things.
The kind folks at Pop Montreal and Arboretum Festival will be holding a concert at Mercury Lounge on April 30th. It’s Jessy Lanza from Hamilton, Ontario. Her music is described to be electro-R&B. Lanza released her debut album, Pull My Hair Back on September 2013 and released by Hyperdub, a London, UK based record label. Reviews from Pitchfork have been favourable so far.
Her music can be similar to Grimes and Purity Ring as it resembles the use of electronic, synth pop music. There seems to be an influence of 80s new wave music to it as her tracks are very infectious to listen and dance to. One of the tracks that stands out is Keep Moving.
Since the release of her debut album in 2013, Lanza has been getting a lot of exposure and coverage. She played at festivals like Pop Montreal and performed throughout Europe.
She was one of the finalists of the second annual Prism Prize for best Canadian music video. Her music was Kathy Lee (video posted below). Her music video joined the likes of Arcade Fire (Afterlife was the winner), The Belle Game, Shad, Drake, and Young Galaxy, just to name a few.
The show presented by Pop Montreal and Arboretum Festival at Mercury Lounge on April 30th will have Ricky Eat Acid as the opener. Doors open at 7pm, show time at 8pm and admission is $15 at the door.
Be prepared to dance throughout the concert.
Lastly, speaking of Arboretum Festival, they were listed as one of Canada’s Top 10 Summer Festivals, according to CBC Music. Kudos goes out to them as one of the rising festivals in Ottawa.
Have a great week!
It’s been an exciting weekend with the lion dance performances and continuing to celebrate Chinese New Year. Monday was an off-day for the lion dance troupe but I had the radio show with the annual Chinese New Year show. Lauren returned to do the Chinese New Year show as I had Candice join me on last year’s edition.
Being year of the horse, it’s Lauren’s favourite animal as she kind of owns a horse. I got to explain the strengths and weaknesses of anyone who’s born year of the horse.
We also got to talk about food and there’s one I’m not fond of and it’s red bean. I know I will get some backlash as it’s their favourite food and dessert. To keep some happy, I played the song by the late Teresa Teng as part of the CNY show.
As usual, there were the familiar Cantopop tracks played and there were several band and song names with the word, ‘horse‘ in it. I was able to find some Canadian indie tracks with the particular animal name.
The best “horse” song would have to be Horses Fell by The Darcys. It’s still new but the band has become a favourite of mine.
I took a couple of instant photos by Impossible and finally got to use the gold frame. There are a few from Sunday, February 3rd. You can see the photos from below.
You can check the playlist over at this link and the audio is posted below.
Lastly, don’t forget about the Winterlude Lunar New Year Parade on Ottawa Chinatown. Happening on Saturday, February 8, 2014 and starts at 1pm. Hope to see you there.
Again, Kung Hey Fat Choy!
January is coming to an end and it’s been a slow month in terms of new music releases. This is a short entry for this week.
This week’s radio show was a retrospective show as I relived some moments from past seasons (there’s a hint to this as I told some good friends). Relived some moments as I played You Say Party, Dan Mangan, and Malajube.
Joining me as usual was Lauren and we got to mention how we got to interview Mangan when he released his album, Oh Fortune and it was her first music interview. As for Malajube, it was quite fitting to play Montreal -40C as we’re still continuing with cold temperatures. Aside from that, the reason for playing them was that I’m still fond of seeing them live in Montreal at a rooftop.
Also on the show were new music from Phantogram, Jeremy Fisher and Robyn Dell’Unto. The audio for this week’s radio show can be listened below. You can check the playlist over at this link.
Chinese New Year is happening this Friday. It will be a great time to celebrate the year of the horse.
Have a great week!
As the so-called polar vortex returns to freeze up Ottawa and the surrounding regions of Ontario, this week’s radio show was more of a full music show. The theme was warming up and listen to new songs as we deal with minus double digits again.
There was new music from the likes of The Balconies, Teenage Kicks, Tokyo Police and Warpaint. Also played this week were Hurt Me Now by Austra and If I Were A Ship by Hey Ocean! Both tracks were recently released as music videos. Towards the end, a slight blast from the past as I decided to play Lykke Li. She will be releasing a new album sometime this year. It’s been three years since her last album was released. Played was one of my favourite songs by her. It was I Follow Rivers and it was The Magician remix.
Lauren joined me on the show as usual but she’s under the weather and at least made an effort to be on the airwaves.
The playlist for this week’s show is over at this link. You can listen to the audio below.
It’s a light entry this week. Stay warm and enjoy good music.
After two week of the best of 2013, it’s back to the usual music show and being live on CKCU. OK, there was another hour but it was pre-taped and the playlist will be coming for it. January is usually thought to be a slow month in terms of new music. Apparently, I’m wrong as this week’s radio show had some new music being played. Certain bands haven’t released for four years and there is some buzz as we expect new material.
Returning to the radio show for the second half of the live show was Lauren. Back from her Christmas holidays. It was great that she was there because there were new songs from Coeur de Pirate and announced on social media & music sites, a new song from Tokyo Police Club. The band will be releasing the album, Forcefield on March 25th. The verdict on the new song is quite different than previous song on their albums. It sounds more poppy and not as rockin’ from the previous works.
As for Coeur de Pirate, she’s releasing a new album which is mainly cover songs and based on a CBC French TV show, Trauma. For the first time, Beatrice Martin (known as Coeur de Pirate) releases an English album through cover songs.
Also played were Crissi Cochrane as she released a live track which was posted on YouTube (Little Sway on January 28th), Robyn Dell’Unto (Little Lines on January 28th) and Warpaint (second self-titled album on January 21st).
The playlist for the second hour is at this link. You can listen to the audio from below.
2013 wasn’t finished yet on this week’s first radio show of 2014 on CKCU-FM. This time, it was the Top 10 Non-Canadian Indie Music of 2013 and considered to be the fourth part of the year end countdown. It’s become a yearly tradition to do two different year-end countdowns. One strictly for Canadian music and the other being non-Canadian music. The non-Canadian list is shorter as I place more emphasis on the Canadian music scene.
Myself and Lauren were counting the best albums from outside of Canada. There were good releases from the top 10 played.
Bands like The Naked and Famous, Vampire Weekend, Yeah Yeah Yeahs and The National had highly anticipated albums and there were surprises from HAIM as their popularity exploded in 2013.
There are two different versions of the countdown. The one aired on CKCU was the top 10 while the entry from the Best of 2013 page is the top 13 Non-Canadian Indie music of 2013.
The radio show version had three new Canadian indie tracks for 2014, they were Crissi Cochrane, The Balconies and Silkken Laumann.
The blog version has Hot Natured (recommended by the host of CKCU’s The Cloud), Best Coast and Foals played on the top 13 of 2013. At the end, leftovers of 2013 were “Your Life Is a Lie” by MGMT and Byegone by Volcano Choir.
To check out the CKCU-FM version, you can go to this link. The On-Demand audio is available to listen over there.
To view the full list, go to The Top 50 of 2013 page is over at this link.
This wraps up the best of music for 2013. Onwards to 2014!
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