Posts Tagged ‘Montreal’
It was a wonderful weekend with to end September as I was in Montreal for Pop Montreal and my expectations exceed for this year because I checked out several bands and went to several venues. It was all in thanks to using Airbnb as the gracious host was accommodating and I was able to use the Bixi bike to get around to places.
The first live music to check out was at Divan Orange and it was Michael Feuerstack. It was unexpected because the place I was staying at was close by. Afterwards was getting to Pop Quarters to get media pass and later going for two discussion panels. The first was a panel called “Some of the Smartest People We Know Discuss: Musicians, What Are your Intellectual Property Rights Now, and What Do We Want That to Really Mean?” That’s such a long title. It was formative discussion as the panellist consisting of Patrick Watson, Justin West (Secret City President), Susan Abramovitch (entertainment lawyer) and moderator, Reuven Ashtar (new media lawyer). It was quite informative as musicians like Watson need to get money to feed his family and how companies are using music for use as a property.
The second panel I went was definitely the one I wanted to check as it was The Polaris Music Prize Salon. Finally got to meet Polaris founder, Steve Jordan. The funny thing was that he thought I would be at the Ottawa salon as I was away to Toronto. The Montreal salon was one of the surprises to appear and it was a way to make up to missing out the Ottawa salon. Jordan was joined by Montreal jury members, Pierre Landy (CBC), Christine Fortier (CISM) and Erik Leijon (freelance/Montreal Gazette)
It was days after Godspeed You! Black Emperor! won best album for the 2013 edition. All were in support of GYBE winning and still being a good album. The band’s statement on their win and criticizing Polaris still left a lot of debate and discussion.
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I had the opportunity to go down to Montreal for the yearly Pop Montreal music festival. I went on fewer dates this year because there was a Polaris Music Prize Salon which took place at the Mercury Lounge on the Thursday night. Compared to last year, I was able to conduct an interview with a band but it’s returning one. It’s been awhile I have seen The Belle Game as they are now reside in Vancouver. Aside from not seeing them for a couple of years, they got a brand new album to be out soon. It will be called Ritual Tradition Habit. Their performance at O Patro Vys on Saturday night had a funny start. The band were fully covered in smoke and I could barely see them because of the heavy smoke from the smoke machine. There was a joke that it was the Vancouver fog followed them. Overall, it was great to see the band live as I previously saw a different incarnation of The Belle Game. The audio interview will be posted below for anyone interested.
Other acts at Pop Montreal were checking out Chairlift, The Elwins and other bands. One surprise that I encountered was a music writer residing in Montreal. Luckily, I had my MOO minicards with me for networking. To my amazement, the writer is from the States and pretty interested in the Montreal music scene. You can check the writer out at Vesper Magazine | Montreal section.
Another person I almost forgot to meet was Ohara Hale because I had her on Facebook and when I went to Pop Montreal last year, I totally forgot about finding her. Unfortunately, I didn’t see her perform but I bumped into her at Puces Pop as she was displaying her posters.
I had a great time being in Montreal and I really wished my co-host, Lauren came along as it’s tough going to shows on your own. All I can say that Montreal has such a vibrant music scene and Pop Montreal brings the excitement for music fans.
On the radio show at CKCU-FM, I played moon songs as Mid-Autumn Festival is on September 30th. It’s fitting to play a moon songs but I didn’t bring along moon cakes to studio.
The Wild 10 Countdown, the new number one is The Fighter by Jenn Grant. She released a brand new album called The Beautiful Wild. The entry for the Wild 10 Countdown is over at this link.
Starting off the show was playing The Bad In Each Other by Feist as her album, Metals won the 2012 Polaris Music Prize. All of the 10 short listed album were great. It’s not a surprise for Feist to win it as her album was beautifully made and very creative.
The playlist is for this week’s show is over at this link.
The September 26, 2012 Radio Show – Press play to listen.
The Belle Game in Montreal Interview
It was a marvelous time at Place des Festivals/Quartier des Spectacles as Arcade Fire performed a free show in Montreal for Pop Montreal. It was an amazing time to be there as the band capped off an incredible year. Just days from winning the 2011 Polaris Music Prize, over a 100,000 crowds packed the place. The opening acts were Kid Koala and Karkwa. I totally forgot about Karkwa opening up for Arcade Fire. Both opening bands were great, Kid Koala played a few classic tracks with his own spin. Moon River was one and it sounded touching. Karkwa rocked out their set and their lead singer did say that they only sing in French as it’s a beautiful language.
As for Arcade Fire’s performance, it was definitely amazing! I kept singing along to all of the songs. There’s too many to list out as everyone would know all of their song since they’re recognizable.
My favourite, Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains) was the final song and they had giant lighted beach balls bouncing through the crowds. I got bonked in the head several times as the balls kept flying around.
It was the best time enjoying all three acts in Montreal. Anyone from Montreal and Quebec should be proud at the band’s accomplishments and the free outdoor show was a way of giving thanks for the support.
Even though the attendance crowd is fluctuating from reports, here’s one from review from Spinner. It’s someone that I know of.
Who I got to see in Montreal?
I did not expect to see The Balconies earlier in the afternoon as I was hanging out at the Notman House. When I headed over to Place des Festivals in the mid-afternoon, I didn’t expect to bump into CBC Radio 3‘s Craig Norris and Steve Pratt. Briefly talked to them about Polaris Music Prize. It was great to see them.
From Storify, some of my tweets from the Arcade Fire outdoor show.
View “The Arcade Fire Free Outdoor Show for Pop Montreal on September 22, 2011″ on Storify
Wednesday’s radio show was the post POP Montreal edition as the top 10 countdown had some bands that attended the music festival and then later on, I aired two interviews by Grand Analog and Think About Life.
What’s new on the radio show is that I got a new co-host. Her name is Marzia and she’s an exchange student from Italy. So, be kind to her. She’s been a great addition to my show as she’s enjoying the music that I am playing.
I started off the show with a couple of Anita Mui songs because October 10th, would of been her birthday if she was still alive. It was another tribute to the “Madonna of Asia.” First song was her rendition of Stand By Me because a good friend has been fond of the original version by Ben E. King. I decided to play it again for her.
As I explained in the previous blog post about the various activities I did at POP Montreal like hanging out with two members of The Balconies and The Golden Dogs for poutine in Montreal. In the second hour, I made the new co-host happy by playing The Hundred In The Hands, Delphic and The Temper Trap. I attended Saturday’s show by checking them out. They were pretty good.
The PKG Giveaway
One thing I forgot to mention on air was who are PKG? They are a Canadian company and they make electronic accessories like laptop sleeves/bags, iPhone cases and other tech carry-on.
The fine folks from PKG had me do a giveaway for the radio show. It was grateful of them to do another one after POP Montreal. It was pretty tempting to not get hooked the messenger bag I gave away.
Congratulations to Tom Burns (of Ottawa) for winning the awesome messenger bag. Kudos to last week’s winner, Tanya Poirier (also of Ottawa) for winning the PKG/POP Montreal VIP giveaway bag.
Thanks to PKG for displaying an excellent room at the POP Montreal headquarters (Notman House) and for the giveaways.
The Interviews at POP Montreal
Grand Analog – Part 1.
It’s in part 1 because the length of the interview was long. Press play to listen or download it.
Think About Life
Press play to listen or download it.
October 7th Update: Thursday Show Guest Hosting and Ottawa Chinatown Gateway
It was totally last minute as I decided to do some guest hosting for 12pm on Thursday at CKCU-FM. Instead of 30 mins, it went to 2 hours. As I ended the show, I decided to sneak in Imagine by John Lennon. What I didn’t realize was his birthday would be on October 9th and he would be 70 years old. Talk about ironic timing.
Press play to listen and the playlist for the show is at this link.
Following the guest stint at CKCU-FM, I had to go to Ottawa Chinatown for the official opening of the Gateway. The official opening had dignitaries and politicians for the unveiling. Here are a few photos I took. The Gateway looks lovely.
Coming to Montreal to attend Pop Montreal was fun. Pop Montreal is an annual music festival that showcases International and local music through various venues. Being my first time, it’s quite enjoyable. Although, I didn’t get a chance to see some of the acts I wanted to see, it was mainly due to walking and taking public transit around to various places. I seem to have gone to Le Divan Orange several times because there were free shows happening in the afternoon. My own problem was not preparing on who to check out as everything I did was on the fly and unexpected.
Friday night, I went to The Jukebox to see Grand Analog. Odario Williams and his band members (minus one) were surprised to see me and I haven’t seen them in awhile. They had a great set and it’s been awhile I heard their music. Before getting inside to The Jukebox, I finally tried Schwartz’s smoked meat sandwich. Luckily, it was across from the venue and had time to waste as I arrived early.
Saturday’s lineup was a lot to check out but I chose a few to attend.
The Notman House (Pop Montreal headquarters) had a Pop BBQ Show featuring The Whitsundays, Hot Panda, Maylee Todd, Forest City Lovers and others. I went for the food as I only checked The Whitsundays perform. Afterwards, I took the bus to Le Divan Orange to see Think About Life. It was a packed show as they couldn’t let any more people in. They rocked out a energetic half an hour set. I did the interview with the lead singer of the band and expect to be aired soon on CKCU.
After Le Divan Orange, I had to go further up to Ubisoft Montreal. Yes, it’s the videogame company. They are one of the sponsors and that event was called Pop The Roof. The photo above was Malajube performing at Ubisoft Rooftop. That was probably one of my favourites because being at the rooftop felt nice. Seeing the backdrop of Mont-Royal and downtown Montreal made it felt surreal. The secret party for Pop The Roof had good crowds and there were free food being served.
The next one was going further down to St-Catherine to go to Le National as I was recommended by a new volunteer at CKCU. She told me to check The Temper Trap and having a media pass, I didn’t need to pay. The opening acts at the show were The Hundred in the Hands (New York) and Delphic (from UK). Those two bands were electro-rock based and they had catchy tunes. Then came The Temper Trap. Their music is alternative music with grand sounds. Their first tune, it seemed epic with the drumming. I know it’s Montreal as the show was packed, but I never knew the band has a good fan following.
The unfortunate part is that the same lineup will be in Ottawa for Sunday night.
After checking out the fabulous show, I headed over to 3 Minots to find The Balconies and Laurent Bourque (along the Old Crowns gang minus their lead member) to pay them a visit. They were surprised to see me in Montreal. It was tough to get in 3 Minots as it was at capacity. I did hang out with Jacquie, Liam, their friend and The Golden Dogs for poutine.
Overall, it was an amazing Saturday I had at Pop Montreal.
Not sure what to check out on the final day of Pop Montreal.
Note: One of the proud sponsors of Pop Montreal, PKG, were kind enough to give me another giveaway for my radio show on CKCU. Keep tuned to it.
You Say Party! We Say Die! in Montreal
Back from Montreal, QC over the Easter holiday. It was a spur of the moment because You Say Party! We Say Die! was in Montreal for a show there and they skipped Ottawa and a few other Ontario cities. It was nice to go outside of Ottawa for a concert. It’s been a very long time I went to a concert in Montreal and that was back in 1993 for Duran Duran at the once famous and legendary Montreal Forum. The slight irony with these two different bands that they are in the New Wave music genre.
Back to YSP! WSD! in Montreal, they were performing at La Sala Rossa. As previously mentioned, it’s the first time to check out an indie music venue in Montreal and my lack of knowledge of the Montreal music scene and venues are minimal at best. Prior to their performance, I arrived to the venue a bit early because I am not familiar with area of Montreal and I saw some of the members and they remembered me.
Overall, their performance was energetic and lot of dancing around. It was great to remember half of the songs because I always kept playing songs from XXXX on my radio show. The crazy part came almost near the end of the set when Like I Give a Care was played and then the opening acts (Braids and Makeout Videotape) came out on stage and delivered the mosh pit/crowd surfing. Lead vocalist, Becky Ninkovic joined in the fray towards the crowd. The other crazy part was her back or leg landed on me as she was getting back on stage from the moshing.
The photo on top was when the band performed on Like I Give A Care.