October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Silvergun and Spleen are a band with visual impact. They like to dress up. I wonder where they're trick or treating tonight.

Listen to "Crack".

And "An Eye For An Eye"

Trick or treat.

October 30, 2012

Ash are comin' to town

Ash are an Irish rock alternative band who have been putting out great songs since 1996. They're coming through Toronto, playing at Lee's Palace on November 17 and I'm looking forward to the show.

Just to keep me hyped, here are a whole bunch of great tunes from the band.

"Girl From Mars" and "Goldfinger" from their 1996 album 1977.

"Shining Light", "Sometimes", "Burn Baby Burn", and "Candy" from 2001's Free All Angels.

"Orpheus", which I first heard in a driving video game, "Clones", "Starcrossed" and "Renegade Cavalcade" from 2005's Meltdown.

"You Can't Have It All" and "I Started A Fire" from 2007's Twilight of the Innocents.

If you like their tunes, they have a Best of...album out. And I'm going to have to catch up on their song-a-fortnight project A-Z Series from 2009 which is being released on vinyl on November 6.

And stay tuned here for my usual craptacular pictures from the live show.

October 29, 2012

If churches were like Chvrches, I might go

I recently happened upon Chvrches. I'm at a loss for descriptive words right now, so I'll just suggest that you hit play and enjoy the sounds of Chvrches.

"The Mother We Share"


Looking forward to the album they're planning to release in early 2013.

October 28, 2012

Paul Banks is Young Again

A while back, I put up a post about Paul Banks and his recent output, including his latest solo album Banks. Here's the new video for the track "Young Again". He's a meanie.

October 27, 2012

Metz with Wet Blanket

This band has been getting tons of buzz. They're loud and aggressive and they're called Metz. Probably no relation to Belinda Metz.

Here's the track "Wet Blanket" from their eponymous début.

October 26, 2012

Some Kinda Love from Nude Beach

Nude Beach have released a new tune from their album II. The song is "Some Kinda Love" and the video kinda spells everything out for ya.

They're in Toronto at Lee's Palace on November 3.

October 25, 2012

New song from Thao & The Get Down Stay Down

I started drafting a post on Thao & The Get Down Stay Down about a year ago. I guess I was waiting for something newsworthy to post along with the lovely music.

Well, as luck would have it, Thao is releasing a new album this February. It's called We the Common and it's out February 5. For now we have a preview track. It's called "Holy Roller" and it is, like all of Thao's music, Lovely, Quirky, Heartfelt, Fun, Funky, Danceable, Emotional, and Pretty.

Enjoy the new song along with some from their previous release, 2009's Know Better Learn Faster.

"Holy Roller"

"When We Swam"

"Body" The video itself starts after about 3 minutes...

"Cool Yourself"

And "Bag of Hammers" from We Brave Bee Stings and All, which was released simply under the artist name of Thao.

October 24, 2012

New Gaslight Anthem video

The Gaslight Anthem have released a video for "Here Comes My Man" from Handwritten. Yes, that's Canadian actress Elisha Cuthbert of such movies as The Girl Next Door starring in the video. There's also a new iPhone/Android app out if you're into that sort of thing.

I guess the nostalgia of handing down physical music is coming to an end...

And it looks like I missed this vid for the song "Handwritten".

October 23, 2012

Official video for Chained by The xx

In my continuing effort to make The xx one of the most posted about bands on this site, here's the official video for "Chained" from Coexist.

October 22, 2012

New track from The Joy Formidable - This Ladder is Ours

Yes! Yes! Yes!

It's another new song from The Joy Formidable's forthcoming album The Wolf's Law. The song's called "This Ladder is Ours".

Can't wait for their show here in Toronto with The Gaslight Anthem. And of course for the new album in January. And for them to come back through town for a headlining show.

October 21, 2012

Ellie Goulding Halcyon released

Ellie Goulding has a new album called Halcyon out. In case you're not sure who Ellie Goulding is, she released a fun album called Lights in 2011. The title track is a great song that has reached huge levels of popularity. You've probably heard it. It's got just shy of 30 million views on YouTube. Her cover of Elton John's "Your Song" is up there too.

Here's the track "Anything Could Happen" from her latest.

October 20, 2012

Favourites: Bootsauce

Bootsauce's The Brown Album was one of the first albums I played on my college radio show. I remember them being one of the bands that started breaking me out of my mainstream rock / metal / hardcore / pop norms and broadening my musical horizons. I also remember thinking, "that album's not brown, it's definitely orange".

I guess Bootsauce's music hasn't aged overly well and their later albums were pretty widely criticized, but I still find lots to enjoy on The Brown Album and Bull. Check out "Masterstroke", "Scratching the Whole" and "Touching Cloth".

Here's one of their best songs, the laid back "Play with Me". Check out the great fretless bass work at the end. Classy!

October 19, 2012

Jack White is Shakin'

I guess we knew that Jack White was a stylin' guy since the black-and-red coordinated look of The White Stripes. On his own he's taking it to a new level, while teaching the kids about the blues.

This is Jack White's latest video from Blunderbuss for "I'm Shankin'", a song originally performed by Little Willie John.

October 18, 2012

Blast from the past: Bourgeois Tagg

I was recently reminded of the fantastic old 80s tune by Bourgeois Tagg. The song is "I Don't Mind At All" and it's wonderful.

October 17, 2012

A thing called Divine Fits

Divine Fits are a modern day indie-alternative supergroup. Britt Daniel from Spoon, Dan Boeckner from Wolf Parade and Handsome Furs, and Sam Brown from New Bomb Turks. Here's the official video for "Would That Not Be Nice" from their début album A Thing Called Divine Fits. Solid stuff.

October 16, 2012

Two Door Cinema Club bring the Sun

I'm usually much more prepared. I don't like being unprepared.

Here's the latest from Two Door Cinema Club's latest album Beacon. The song's called "Sun".

October 15, 2012

Dedication for a subway rider

This great track by Steel Panther called "Death to all But Metal" goes out to the guy with the mirrored aviator shades, mullet and leather jacket, and his buddy in 80s vintage Adidas pants that I saw on the subway the other day. Long live the 80s! And death to all but metal!

NSFW for language. If you liked that, head over to the videos page on their site for more.

October 14, 2012

Wolf Gang and all of his men

Here's a song that you may have heard already. It certainly would have been a lot more current back in June when I first heard it. It's Wolf Gang with the song "The King And All Of His Men" from Suego Faults. It's got a strong chorus, driving beat and smooth, synthy hooks. Definitely easy on the ears.

October 13, 2012

Family of the Year

I don't know how official the Family of the Year designation is, but these LA-based musicians have formed a family of their own. This is a tune called "Diversity". Something besides music that families can benefit from. Hope you enjoy this happy, if repetitive, little tune.

October 12, 2012

Favourites: We Are Scientists

Have I talked before about how much I love the first We Are Scientists album With Love and Squalor? Have I mentioned how their subsequent albums have absolutely paled in comparison? Oh, yeah, I did? Well, what's up with that anyway?

At least we have their great 2006 album and videos for each and every song on it.

"Nobody Move, Nobody Get Hurt"

"The Scene Is Dead"


"Can't Lose"


"Cash Cow"

"It's A Hit"

"The Great Escape"


"Lousy Reputation"

"Worth the Wait"

"What's the Word"

October 11, 2012

Parts and Labor

I love bands that break out of the traditional rock band instrumentation mould. Two piece bands seem to be quite popular now, with most of them going for guitar and drums, bypassing that constant challenge of finding a bass player. Parts and Labor go about it a different way with a three-piece drums-bass-keyboards approach. They still deliver a powerful, propulsive sound.

Here are a couple of songs from their most recent album, 2011's Constant Future.

"Echo Chamber"

"A Thousand Roads"

October 10, 2012

Eight and a Half with Go Ego

They're a band comprised of some members of Broken Social Scene and The Stills. They're called Eight and a Half and this is the song "Go Ego" from their eponymous début. It took a while for this song to seep into my consciousness, but seep it has.

October 9, 2012

Happy birthday, John

"Imagine there's no heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people living for today

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life in peace

You, you may say
I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one
I hope some day you'll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people sharing all the world

You, you may say
I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one
I hope some day you'll join us
And the world will live as one"

"Imagine", John Lennon

On John Lennon's birthday, I'm thinking of how he tried to set the world on the right path to peace and harmony. Sad that so many didn't listen, and that so many still don't.

October 8, 2012

The xx on Jools

You'd be right if you detected that I rather like The xx. You'd also be right that this is the third time that this song has appeared on the blog. And they don't even have an official video for it out yet.

Oh well. It's a good song.

Here's The xx on Later with Jools Holland performing the beautiful "Angels" from their latest album, Coexist.

October 7, 2012

Zeus bring the good ol' Canadian rock

Zeus are an all-powerful and godlike rock band hailing from the Great White North, eh. They deliver a classic rock sound with plenty of loud guitars and more cowbell. Their latest album is Busting Visions and this song is "Are You Gonna Waste My Time?"

October 6, 2012

Favourites: White Rabbits with Percussion Gun

Here's another of my favourites for your listening and dancing pleasure. It's White Rabbits with "Percussion Gun" from their 2009 album It's Frightening.

October 5, 2012

New Diamond Rings

The new album Free Dimensional from Diamond Rings is out October 22. If you haven't heard it yet, here's the first power-synth-pop song "I'm Just Me". It's all any of us can be, really. Enjoy the 80s flashback video, too.

I've also heard that Diamond Rings will be appearing on David Letterman on October 26, so if you like what you heard, check that out.

October 4, 2012

Dirty Ghosts

Dirty Ghosts are true to their name in the dirty, gritty sound they produce. Not sure if they're ghosts.

Here are a couple of tracks from Metal Moon. 

"Katana Rock"

"Ropes That Way"

And yes, the song "Eyes of a Stranger" on the "Katana Rock" single is indeed the 1982 track by The Payolas.

October 3, 2012

Ménage with Tonight

Ménage is a band of three siblings from Toronto who put out music with a ton of energy and catchy melodies.

"Tonight" is a cool, fun, song with a gender bending video and a pessimistic chorus.

"Bury Us Young" has a powerhouse chorus and a driving beat.

October 2, 2012

Daughter with Smother

If you like the minimalist approach of The xx, you may well like Daughter as well. They've got a similar sound in the laid back and swirly guitar parts mixed with beautiful melodies.

October 1, 2012

Blood Red Shoes and DZ Deathrays at The Drake Underground in Toronto

I don't get out to nearly as many shows as I would like to. Every time I do, I think to myself that I should get out more often. I'm resolving to do a better job of that. Let's see how that works out for me.
The most recent show that I attended was last Wednesday, September 26 at The Drake Underground in Toronto. The bill was England's Blood Red Shoes with Australia's DZ Deathrays opening. They're both guitar-drums duos that continue to make me wish that my old band had gone for a two-guitar and drums configuration over the frustration of looking for bassists. When I walked in, I saw DZ Deathrays' drummer sitting behind the merch table and almost said, "Hey, I've seen you puke on YouTube!" Somehow I held myself back.
DZ Deathrays hit the stage to a small but enthusiastic crowd. They did a great job belting out their heavy alternative sounds, which they acknowledge can be compared to DFA 1979. Singer and guitarist Shane Parsons uses his voice and guitar effects to great advantage to thicken out the duo's sound. The bombast and heavy cymbal use of drummer Simon Ridley did the same. The songs are fun and have enough hooks to reel in a listener largely unfamiliar with their tunes. DZ Deathrays' album Bloodstreams is out now.
By the time Blood Red Shoes hit the stage, The Drake Underground had filled up considerably, although I don't know that the show was sold out. I was actually surprised that on their third great album, Blood Red Shoes wasn't selling out much bigger venues. Singer Laura-Mary Carter mentioned that the last time they played Toronto, there were only about 10 people at the show.
They belted through a set that spanned their three album history pretty evenly, keeping the energy level high and all our heads bobbing. I was happy to hear some of my favourites like set opener "It's Getting Boring by the Sea" and "You Bring Me Down" from their first album Box of Secrets, "Don't Ask", "Light It Up" and "Heartsink" from their 2010 release Fire Like This, and "Cold" from their latest In Time To Voices.

If you're not familiar with these awesome bands, check out some tunes below.

From Blood Red Shoes:



"Don't Ask"

"Light It Up"

"It's Getting Boring by the Sea"

"You Bring Me Down"

From DZ Deathrays:

"Dollar Chills"

"Gebbie St"

"No Sleep"

"The Mess Up" Jager!!!

"Rad Solar"


"Blue Blood"

"Play Till You're Dead"

The photos in this post are original pics by me, not the usual professional pics stolen from some other web site. You can tell the difference original art (and a POS BlackBerry camera) makes.