out of the darkness and into the fire
Since it's almost that time, here's a quick recap of what's going down on New Year's Eve:
The Biltmore hosts the 4th(?) edition of the Winter Social, Ice Cream Social's annual December 31st bash. Tix are available at Scratch, Red Cat, Zulu, and the Biltmore off-sales counter.
Unfamiliar, eatArt, Love Dancing, and Arbutus records are throwing a pretty great looking party at the eatArt labs. Paula from Silly Kissers, Blue Hawaii, Grimes, Resorts, Makeout Videotape, and Sean Nicholas Savage all play live and Cadence Weapon and No Gold both take turns behind the decks. Tix are... sold out. Sorry.
NYE at the Waldorf features John Maus, Geneva Jaccuzi, and TRS-80 live, along with a whole wack of DJs in the various rooms. Tix are available here.
Goody and the Winnie Cooper gang host Blood Diamonds, Oh No! Yoko, and Autacoid. Tix are available here.
The Railway hosts Fuzzcat, Go Ghetto Tiger, and Strange Magic. Tix are available at the Railway or by phone at (604) 681-1625.
And, the Astoria welcomes 2011 with Rad Times New Year's. Tix are at the door.
now playing: the Walkmen - "In the New Year"
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
This isn't a live show, but Saturday, if love all things Morrissey, or alternately, like me, think he's a bit of a dick, but love his music, head down the the Astoria on Satruday for Merry Smithsmas: the Smiths Xmas Party. It's $6 to get in, but if you wear a Moz style shirt or come clutching a bouquet, you'll get a break on cover. It's free if you have a Smiths or Morrissey tattoo.
Speaking of free, Zulu hosts a free show with the Salteens on Sunday. Show starts at 6pm.
Oh, and it wouldn't be right for me to neglect mentioning Chris-a-riffic's set at Ben Lai's birthday soiree at the Railway last night. The music, which was, as per usual, pretty great, wasn't the story, but Chris had some comedy gold going with his stage banter. Here's hoping the wisecracks sneak their way into all of his sets from here on out.
now playing: Robyn - Call Your Girlfriend
Monday, December 06, 2010
hastings sunrise: another poll of local favourites
Earlier this month, I put out the call to let some people know that after a three year hiatus, I was bringing back the (once) annual poll of local favourites.
As with past lists, contributors were asked to list their top ten "hottest" local acts, ranked 1-10, with 10 points being assigned to 1st (9 for second, etc) and both "hottest" and "local" being up to them to define.
In the end, 84 bands all got at least one of the 150 possible votes. So, while there was some agreement at the top, opinions reflected just how awesome and varied the local scene is right now.
This year, Discorder drove that point home even further by doing a similar poll among their writers. While there's some crossover, you'll also find a lot of names that aren't here and vice versa.
Thanks to Eric Axen from Weird Pop Vancouver and Hermetic, Gregory Adams from the Straight and Healthy Students, Trevor Risk from ION and the Good News, Tristan Orchard from Winnie Cooper and DBL Dragon, Cameron Reed aka Babe Rainbow from Music Waste (and too many other things to list), Aaron Schubert from the Biltmore, Mark Richardson from Expressway to My Skull and Pop Drones, Dustin Bromley from Damaged Goods, Prohab and Keep Tidy, Shea Dahl from AMS Events and the Vogue, Sean Orr aka Tassels from Scout, David Mattatall from NMR Records and Zoo Zhop, Sean Owen from A Reminder, Alex Hudson from Chipped Hip and Exclaim, Tyler Fedchuk from Radio Zero and Wild Zero, and Gord McCullough.. umm.. man about town.
Since some of the judges also make music, it should be noted that nobody voted for their own band (though some of them probably should have) and I didn't vote for Fine Mist.
And, hey, it's Christmas time, why not give the gift of local music? A lot of these acts have music out that's available at the many fine, independent retailers around town, and you're about to get a whole wack of great suggestions.
30. Joyce Collingwood (10pts/3 votes)
"These ladies were the talk of the town after Music Waste 2010, with good reason." - Dustin
"Go see them and pick up some change, if people still do that" - Gord
Watch: "Yaletown Yuppies" (live at the Biltmore)
29. V. Vecker (11pts/2 votes)(tie)
"The Leonard Bernstein of noise" - Trevor
"I think time will affirm how lucky we are to have someone this creatively brilliant in our backyard." - Gord
28. Timecopz (11pts/2 votes)(tie)
"One of the best bands in the overcrowded garage-punk scene." - Mark
Watch: "In the Morning" (live at the Biltmore)
27. My Friend Wallis (11pts/2 votes)(tie)
"Tropical mango fuzz pop harmonies." - Tristan
Watch: "Hiding" (live at Scratch on Dick's)
26. Black Wizard (11pts/3 votes)
"Tons of press, heavy ass live show, and an incredible ability to play immaculate metal riffs these guys had a pretty huge year. Thanks for the record, John." - Cam
"These guys make men want to buy guitars and women want to buy some sexist comment." - David
"The only band in town that adds inches to your dick." - Gord
Watch: "Drugs" (live at Pat's)
21. Oh No! Yoko (12pts/2 votes)(tie)
Watch: "Courtyard! Bankrupt"
21. World Club (12pts/2 votes)(tie)
"Have you heard their Two Inputs EP? No? What is wrong with you?" - Dustin
"Download their free ep if you haven't already!" - Eric
Watch: "Mountain Man"
21. Flash Palace (12pts/2 votes)(tie)
"These kids are way too talented" - Mark
Watch: live at Goody
21. The SSRIs (12pts/2 votes)(tie)
"Did you see the window display at Vinyl Records? It's fucking adorable." - Alex
Watch: "CPDEP (live at the Suicide Club"
21. Shimmering Stars (12pts/2 votes)(tie)
"I’ve only heard four of their songs but this city needs a dreamy pop band. Ranked high despite a hokey-as-shit music video." - Trevor
Watch: "I'm Gonna Try"
20. Shi Yi (13pts/2 votes)
"Dark reflections on the opposite sex." - David
19. MT-40 (13pts/4 votes)
Watch: Isabella Rossellini (live at the Astoria)"
17. Defektors (14pts/2 votes)
"I think their recent LP, The Bottom Of The City, will go down as one of the all-time great Northwestern punk records." - Mark
Watch: "Doomsday Girl (live at Vic Square)"
17. Humans (14pts/2 votes)
"I can’t wait until these guys become huge and (in classic Vancouver tradition) everybody in the city decides to hate them." - Trevor
"LP x 2011?" - Tristan
Watch: "Bike Home"
16. Myths (15pts/2 votes)(tie)
Watch: live at the Biltmore
15. Womankind (15pts/2 votes)(tie)
"Heaviest new band in the city" - Cam
"Some of Vancouver’s old hands make a stab at Amphetamine Reptile-style muscle rock and pull it off better than the originators." - Mark
"Best band in Vancouver and I am not sure if they or anybody else knows it." - Gord
13. Heavy Chains (15pts/3 votes)(tie)
"Somehow even more potent and frightening than Andrea’s other band, Nu Sensae" - Mark
Watch: live at Funky Winkerbean's
13. Black Mountain (15pts/3 votes)(tie)
"They really could earn this spot just based on the badassness Wilderness Heart's cover but the record is just as awesome. In my mind, they're the most Vancouver-y of Vancouver bands." - Sean Owen
Watch: "Old Fangs"
12. Needles//Pins (15pts/4 votes)
Watch: live at Olio
11. Teen Daze (15pts/4 votes)
"For tha kidz." - David
"Is there anyone he hasn't done a remix for?" - Alex
Watch: Watch: "Shine On You Crazy White Cap"
10. No Gold (16pts/3 votes)
"The minor lineup change was the important thing that happened for them this year. They've moved past their brand of pop-icalia and into something even more experimental and weird while maintaining their pop sensibilities. I can't wait for an official release." - Cam
Watch: live on Thunderbird Radio Hell
Photo by Luna Nuhic9. Peace (18pts/2 votes)
"I'm just glad they're alive after their van flipped on the way to Sled Island. I'm also glad they are making some of the catchiest weirdo rock in Vancouver." - Cam
"They deserve way more recognition than they're currently getting." - Dustin
8. Brasstronaut (22pts/3 votes)
"Award-winning." - Alex
Watch: "Old World Lies"
6. Babe Rainbow (23pts/ 4 votes)(tie)
"Lots of shows, lots of press, and a really fucking scary EP."
6. Watermelon (23pts/4 votes)(tie)
"Goth surf." - Tristan
"This twice unfortunately named group of ne'er do well youngnz blew the shit out of every band at music waste and write great songs." - Gord
Photo by Ben Marvin5. White Lung (26pts/6 votes)
"Mish Way is a snarling, dream of a front woman, and can bury any other punk lady in the contemporary world. The hidden treat of White Lung is guitarist Kenny McCorkell, who shreds like nobody else in the city." - Trevor
"New guitarist, new releases, and grinding on the road for the better part of the year has put White Lung in position where it feels like they could blow up at anytime." - Cam
Watch: "Loose Heels"
4. Japandroids (29pts/3 votes)
"With all the touring they do, they're a little more like nomads than "local". Dave is quite possibly one of the most friendly Vancouverites I know." - Dustin
"What else needs to be said? Best band this city has produced in ages." - Shea
"Even without a new album to promote, Japandroids still managed to be my favourite local act of the year. Three new seven inches, a vinyl reissue of those early EPs, and some memorable shows in Vancouver all reminded me why I love this band so much. Oh yeah, Younger Us was one of my favourite songs of 2010." - Sean Owen
Watch: "Racer X (Big Black Cover - live on KEXP)"
3. Nu Sensae (30pts/4 votes)
"Going really strong for two years straight." - David
"This band plays 13 times a week and has an ethic that makes everybody else look stupid." - Gord
Watch: "Don't Panic (live at the Peanut Gallery)"
2. Fine Mist (35pts/5 votes)
"No other Vancouver band has such a devoted fan club." - Dustin
"Hard not to love the songs." - Shea
"Bollocks to conflict of interest! So hot." - Alex
"First up, Public Domain is a great record. Second, when I think about Vancouver bands I never think about a band that sounds like Fine Mist. This is, of course, one of the reasons they deserve to be on the list." - Sean Owen
Watch: "Murder Murder (live at the Cobalt)"
1. Apollo Ghosts (58pts/8 votes)
"They owned this year" - Eric
"If they were able to commit to being a touring band, they would have had a massive year. Probably the album of the year (and their Olio gig was incredible)." - Shea
"One or two 'big' reviews away from blowing up." - Sean Owen.
"Old folks make good music." - David
"I've spent almost two years justifying why Apollo Ghosts are the best band in Vancouver/Canada/the world. They just are." - Alex
Watch: "Thing You Go Through (live at the Princeton Pub)"
And finally, here's the list of bands that received at least one vote:
Walter TV, Animal Bodies, Boogie Monster, Dead Ghosts, Duffy & the Doubters, Gigi, Sun Wizard, Top Less Gay Love Tekno Party, Young Liars, Supercassette, Sex Church, Pointed Sticks, The Pack AD, You Say Party!, Dan Mangan, Eating Out, Abramson Singers, AHNA, Aunts & Uncles, Bad Fate, Baptists, Basketball, Blood Diamonds, B-Lines, Bogus Tokus, Boy Voyage, Bummer High, Channels 3x4, Christopher Smith, Congress, Cowards, Crystal Swells, DB Buxton, Dbl Dragon, Friendshop & the Fawn, Gross Misconduct, Hot Moonbeams, Iam Wyatt, Junior Major, Koban, Lord Beginner, Manic Attracts, Megasoid, Milky Way, Mode Moderne, Mother Mother, n.213, No UFOs, The Pack AD, Pointed Sticks, Reflektionss, Shearing Pinx, Slam Dunk, Speakerbruiser Rob, Stefana Fratila, Student Teacher, Twin Crystals, Vincent Parker, and Woodhands
Friday, December 03, 2010
and if i seemed to be confused, i didn't mean to be with you
Leah Abramson - "Joey (Concrete Blonde Cover)"
This and a whole bunch more photos from the CiTR Fundrive Finale at the Biltmore on the CiTR website.
Thursday, December 02, 2010
I'm working on something else right now, but here's a quick recap of Black Mountain last night.
I made it to the Commodore about halfway through Black Angels' set, which was, as expected, a very droney affair. They did a good job of complimenting the headliners without being too similar, dialing back the Sabbath influence and filling it in with a healthy dose of Spacemen 3.
If you're from Vancouver, you probably already know that Black Mountain are one of the best bands in the city. And, they had no trouble proving it again last night. I could have done with a little something from the earlier part of the catalogue, but the last two full lengths seem to fit together a little better stylistically, and since they're supporting their newest, the setlist choices made sense. Besides, the show closing cover of "Tomorrow Never Knows" with the Black Angels made up for any minor quibbles with the song choices.
On an unrelated note, congratulations to White Lung, whose amazing record, It's the Evil was named Exclaim's punk record of the year.
An on a semi-related to that note, I wrote the write-up for Sleigh Bells's Treats which was voted the 16th best pop/rock record of 2010.
Big update... I was going to say tomorrow, but who am I kidding... big update soon. In the spirit of the (year end poll) season.
now playing: the Walkmen - Angela Surf City