Friday, December 29, 2006
teach me sweetheart

From Blown Speakers' End of Year Listfest, Vol. 3: Shows

Consider this the final installment (I think) of every music blogger's favourite past time, the masturbatory end of year lists. I saw somewhere in the range of 75 shows this year, which is somewhere between 150-200 bands (although some of them were repeats). The venues ranged from art galleries to clubs to theatres to stadiums. Some of them were awesome, some of them were terrible, some left me wanting more, and some drove me out the door early. But these were the ten that I enjoyed the most. Actually, these are the ten that happened in Vancouver that I enjoyed the most. Sleater-Kinney's second last show ever might have been the best thing I've seen in my life.

1. The Fiery Furnaces @ Richard's (June 12th)
If I never see the Fiery Furnaces again, I'll be disappointed that this was the lone time that I managed to catch them. Not because the show was sub-par, but because it was so very different from what I expected. Sans any keys, the Furnaces ripped through a loud, snotty, punked up set that left my ear drums buzzing. Not everything worked when it was driven by a fuzzed out guitar, but the things that did (almost everything) were taken to a whole different place and a whole other level.

2. The Hold Steady @ the Plaza (October 20th)
I had more fun at this show than at any other show in Vancouver the entire year.

3. TV on the Radio w/Celebration @ the Plaza (May 6th)
Their Commodore show was good, but their hastily rescheduled-after-a-shooting-at-richards show at the Plaza was transcendent. To top things off, rather than Grizzly Bear (snoooooooore), Celebration opened and got the party started properly.

4. Final Fantasy @ the Norm Theatre (September 19th)
No matter what you think of He Poos Clouds, if you missed this you should be kicking yourself right now. The music was exquisite, but it was an experience for both the ears and the eyes. The nation's inaugural Polaris Prize winner was silhouetted against a shifting backdrop of cutouts and colours as he recreated songs of sorcery and soothsaying. The result, fittingly, was pure magic.

5. Akron/Family @ the Media Club (March 4th)
During Akron/Family's first visit to Vancouver they managed to tread the line between "freak" and "folk," never meandering to far into Phish territory, nor playing it too straight. The result was one of those shows that leaves you explaining yourself to friend's from various locales who weren't fortunate enough to catch the hit or miss band on a good night.

6. A Silver Mount Zion @ Richard's (August 16th)
This show was a pleasant surprise. For one reason or another I'd lost interest in ASMZ, only picking up a ticket a few days before in some vein attempt to fill the musical void left by godspeed you! black emperor's hiatus. They weren't godspeed, nor could one have rightfully expected them to be. What they were, however, was fantastic in their own right. The encore rendition of "Blind, Blind, Blind" was one of the finest single moments I witnessed this year.

7. Jeff Tweedy @ the Commodore (January 31st)
The thing about a Jeff Tweedy solo show is that in addition to Wilco standards, a healthy dose of covers and more neglected numbers from all of his bands' catalogues, you also get Jeff the comedian. And while he's not likely to quit his day job anytime soon, he was way funnier than Janeane Garofalo was at the Comedy Fest.

8. The Constantines @ the Pit Pub (January 14th)
I'm pretty fond of their recorded output, but on a stage the Constantines are truly something else. I totally regret hugging the barricade at Sasquatch while Neko Case gave in to Mother Nature after two songs, when the Cons were up the hill rocking 'til the power blew out. As a consolation, I can remember being crammed into the dingy confines of the Pit while a couple hundred people shouted along to "On to You."

9. Jolie Holland @ St. James Hall (June 18th)
This show was special because it didn't feel like you were watching a performance, as much as you'd just found yourself privy to the jam session of some very talented friends. The former Be Good Tanya was joined by her former bandmate, Samantha Parton, CR Avery, and Geoff Berner, as she ran through a set that spanned her three full-lengths and beyond. No setlist or carefully rehearsed sequences, just a couple of hours of beautiful, spontaneous music.

Mike Relm @ Richard's (February 25th)
Apparently Mike Relm's shtick gets old after you've seen him a couple of times. I can definitely see that happening, but the first time you catch him with all the bells and whistles, you'll undoubtedly catch yourself during a hundred odd moments of disbelief - did he actually do that? Yes, yes he did.

Worth a mention: ...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead with Blood Brothers and Celebration @ the CCC (December 10th), Man Man @ the Media Club (September 30th), the Rapture @ Richard's (November 14th), Jenny Lewis with the Watson Twins @ Richard's (March 7th), Matthew Good @ the VECC (April 20th), Spank Rock @ the Plaza (June 7th)

now playing: Sleater-Kinney - Rollercoaster


you might be the only person I've ever met who preferred the celebration to grizzly bear.

no accounting for taste I suppose

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:36 a.m.  

: (
i somehow managed to miss all of these shows.

and - confused by no mention of Cat Power w/ Memphis Blues Band @ the Commodore?

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:49 a.m.  

no Broken Social Scene (Commodore or Deer Park) and no New Porns?

I'd have to throw in Yo La Tengo at Richard's and Wedding Present, also at Richard's

By Anonymous g, at 12:36 p.m.  

- grizzly bear literally had me nodding off

- i actually liked the solo CP shows more... and probably should've mentioned those.

- wasn't the Commodore BSS show last year? and i didn't get tickets to YLT in time (long story)

By Blogger Quinn, at 1:04 p.m.  

yea, BSS at the Commodore was 2005. I agree that the Tweedy show was awesome; I'm sad I missed ASMZ.

By Anonymous josh, at 5:31 p.m.  

Books@Richards, Michael Hurley+Vetiver@MediaClub, Joana Newsome@St.Andrews, Psychic Ills+Blood On The Wall@MediaClub, Califone@MediaClub, Liars@Richards, Music Waste, Victory Square Block Party,

By Anonymous sean Orr, at 11:30 p.m.  

why isn't your list more like my list???????

By Blogger Graham, at 5:07 a.m.  

Nice call, Graham :)

So, Quinn, if you had to choose, would you say The Hold Steady was the best in Vancouver this year? I had a hard time singling any one out.

By Anonymous Peter, at 10:15 a.m.  

Fiery Furnaces.. best show I saw.

The Hold Steady was more fun.. as in, everyone in my general vicinity was drunk (which didn't result in jerkiness), jumping around, hollering, and having a good time.

By Blogger Quinn, at 11:55 a.m.  

I also would have added the first four shows from Sean's list. Michael Hurley was the nicest surprise I had at any concert this year, especially since I managed to catch Dan & Emma opening for Jana Hunter before I headed over to the Media Club for Vetiver and Michael Hurley. That was a great night. Joanna wasn't quite what I'd hoped for, but still glorious, the Books were the same as last year (but perfect), and Psychic Ills opened my head like a bottle of champagne.

By Blogger Saelan, at 7:49 p.m.  

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upcoming shows
2/8 Twin Sister, Eleanor Friedberger, and Ava Luna @ the Media Club
2/9 David Choi @ the Rio
2/10 Secret Chiefs 3 and Dengue Fever @ the Rickshaw
2/13 White Buffalo @ the Media Club
2/14 The Ballyntines and Pleasure Cruise (TT) @ the Biltmore
2/18 Grimes w/Born Gold @ Fortune (early)
2/18 Cruel Young Heart, Young Liars, the Oh Wells, and Matiation @ the Dodson Rooms (AA)
2/18 Cursive w/UME @the Media Club
2/19 The Asteroids Galaxy Tour w/Vacationer @ Venue
2/20 Veronica Falls w/Bleached @ the Media Club
2/26 DJ Krush @ Fortune
2/29 Trevor Hall @ the Media Club
3/6 Slow Club w/Signals @ the Media Club
3/7 Cloud Nothings w/Mr. Dream @ the Media Clubr
3/8 Islands @ the Rio
3/10 Memoryhouse @ the Waldorf
3/17 William Fitzsimmons @ the Biltmore (early)
3/18 Magnetic Fields @ the Vogue (AA)
3/21 Plants & Animals>/b> @ the Rickshaw
3/22 Drive-by Truckers @ the Commodore
3/23 White Rabbits @ the Biltmore
3/23 Loney Dear @ the Media Club
3/24 Sharon Van Etten and the War on Drugs @ the Biltmore (early)
3/25 Nada Surf and An Horse @ the Rickshaw
3/27 The Ting Tings @ the Commodore
4/5 House de Racket @ the Electric Owl
4/6 Chairlift w/Nite Jewel @ the Electric Owl
4/7 Heartless Bastards @ the Media Club
4/8 Metronomy @ Venue
4/8 Gotye @ the Vogue (AA)
4/9 Cults @ Venue
4/10 First Aid Kit @ Venue
4/10 Andrew Bird w/Laura Marling @ the Vogue (AA)
4/13 The Odds and the Grapes of Wrath @ the Rickshaw
4/14 The Joel Plaskett Emergency @ the Vogue (AA)
4/24 School of Seven Bells w/Exitmusic @ the Electric Owl
4/26 Justice @ the PNE Forum (AA)
4/27 M83 @ the Vogue (AA)
4/27 Yukon Blonde @ the Commodore
4/28 Neon Indian @ Venue (early)
5/6 Delta Spirit w/Waters @ the Electric Owl
5/9 Yann Tiersen @ the Rickshaw
5/11 Great Lake Swimmers w/Cold Specks @ the Commodore
5/12 The Boxer Rebellion> @ the Biltmore
5/27 Coeur de Pirate @ Venue

AA = all ages
DG = @damaged goods
DFTK = @dirty for the kids
FJW = @fake jazz wed
EN = @easy now
GD = @glory days
HL = @higher learning JH = @junior high
JY= @junkyard
RRPP = @rocknroll pizza party
SD = @shindig
TT = @toonie tuesday
NW = @no worries

more shows
the biltmore
the railway
the red room

club action
culture club
damaged goods
east van soul club
glory days
ice cream social
no more strangers
wild zero

local favourites

mostly music
a day in the life of...
a reminder
chipped hip
duncan's donuts
expressway to my skull
goodnight neverland
hero hill
the indie files
my indie world
radio zero
the skinny
weird pop vancouver
winnie cooper

red cat

formed a band
the abramson singers
black mountain
the clips
fine mist
no gold
nu sensae
twin crystals
white lung

dj kicks
betti forde
cam dales
dg djs
expendable youth
john cougar
paul devro
tyler fedchuk

everything else
beyond robson
chez nous presents
linds & nicola
ryan walter wagner
safe amplification site society
the straight
twee death
urban diner
vancouver is awesome
vanity presents

everywhere else

brooklyn vegan
copy, right
feed your habit
for the 'records'
good weather for airstrikes
gorilla vs. bear
i am fuel, you are friends
i (heart) music
largehearted boy
mad decent
mcnutt against the music
more cowbell
music (for robots)
my old kentucky blog
the outernet
palms out sounds
pop (all love)
rock, paper, pixels
said the gramophone
soul sides
songs: illinois
weird canada

you ain't no picasso

cbc radio 3
coke machine glow
glorious noise
schedule two
tiny mixtapes




on repeat
i'll make you a tape
one song
promo pile

previous posts
your face is like the sun sinking into the ocean
but the very next day you gave it away...
this is hardcore
smash your head on the punk rock
all or nothing
hit it & quit
i'm fast as lightning bro, you better use your nik...
i'll love you until my veins explode
one more minute to midnight
ross ross ross


mp3s are for preview purposes, if you like what you hear, buy it at your favourite indie record store. please don't direct link to photos. click for more.

writing by Quinn
unless noted

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