Weekend Concert Picks: April 30-May 2

CARIBOU (Daniel Snaith)

CARIBOU (Daniel Snaith)

FRIDAY APRIL 30

YOUNG RIVALThe Horseshoe • Refreshing, raw and memorable. Local band from Hamilton. Listen to ‘Your Island’.

THE TWELVES The Mod Club • From Brazil, The Twelves produce  not only outstanding remixes, but their original tracks are equally impressive. Check them out if you’re a fan of Daft Punk, Simian Mobile Disco, Justice.

JONSISound Academy • Saturday’s show was cancelled, but your tickets will be honoured tonight. Sigur Ros frontman, Jonsi is getting lots of buzz.

SATURDAY MAY 1

YEASAYER & SLEIGH BELLSLee’s Palace • I’ve been so excited for this show since it was announced. It’s sold out but you can buy tickets at the door. Make sure to bring your appetite to Big Fat Burrito while you’re waiting in line. The old Lee’s artfully graffitied facade has made way for a second location of this tasty burrito shop. It’s my favourite burrito in the city. You’ll need your energy topped up before this show.

And into Monday, just because I can….MONDAY MAY 3

CARIBOUThe Phoenix • Dan Snaith a.k.a. Caribou (or Manitoba pre-2004) got his start on a stolen, dusty sampler from his high school. This Dr. of Mathematics (yes, believe it) creates candy for your ears. His music is so interesting to listen to. Even if you turn out not to be a huge fan, Caribou is a lesson in musical education.

Just Released: New ¡Borracho! remix

The ¡B!-Boys have done it again with a stellar new remix just in time for the weekend.

It is a remix of the song ‘Crazy’ by German group I’m Not a Band. You can download it here. I’m Not a Band frontman, Stephen J. is classically trained and it’s not hard to pick up on this with the interesting instruments woven throughout. The ¡Borracho! remix of Crazy is as explosive as it is smooth. There is something about it that reminds me of The Teenagers….after five energy drinks and a helluva lotta good bounce and beat.

¡Borracho! has made a video of the remix as well:

UPCOMING: May 7 • Mod Club • ¡Borracho! EP Release Party

I’m Not a Band on MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/imnotabandmusic 
Viva Borracho on MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/vivaborracho 

Interview: Tundra Fun

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Photo credits: Lucia Graca

TUNDRA FUN IS:

Jay Richards: Guitar, vocals • Emory Martin: Drums, vocals • Josh Kohler: Bass, vocals • Rob Sills: Keyboards, piano, vocals.

Location: Queen West rooftop. They play next at Czehoski’s on May 4. Worthwhile to go see ’em.

T: How did you all find each other?

Jay: I met Josh through our ultimate frisbee team. We started playing together, and one night we were playing at Not My Dog and Emory was there drinking, and jumped in on drums for a song, and he quickly became the drummer. We had a residency at Not My Dog and Rob works there, and plays in another band with Emory. He came in recently as our keyboardist.

T: So for those who are yet to listen to your music, what would you say your sound is like?

Jay: A little eclectic, but jammy, and funky. Definitely danceable.

Rob: And I’d say the addition of a keyboard player is also built on that. I saw them play a long time ago, and I wanted to be in the band, after hearing them perform. Their sound was really different.

T: An article I read recently described your music as, “slinky fusion of jamdom that opens the door to 70s vinyl.” What a great way to be described.

Emory: We should get that guy in the band. Laughs. Maybe spoken word, and he can just read out the review. And we’ll play background music.

T: What are the songs about?

Jay: They’re about different things. There’s some pretty serious content for sure, like loss and redemption. But there’s also songs about bong hits and bathing suits. I think that’s part of what we do, who we are.

T: Tell me a little bit about your writing process.

Jay: That’s the million dollar question I guess. People always get asked that and you’re never really satisfied with the answer. But I think for everybody it sort of happens differently each time. I do a lot of the writing, and then I come to the guys, and we flush it out, jam it out.

T: If you could make music in any other decade, what decade would it be?

Emory: 70s for sure.

Jay: Or maybe New Orleans in the 1930s, that’d be pretty cool.

Rob: Or maybe the future? Like Deltron 3030.

T: So did you always know you wanted to make music?

Rob: Yeah. I did a business degree then came to Toronto to work in sales. When I was 27, I changed everything, started playing guitar, moved to Parkdale, writing songs. And then I started playing piano again a couple years later and went from there.

Emory: Absolutely. Since I was a kid.

Josh: I started playing bass in grade 12, and that’s when I started thinking seriously about being in a band. Playing rock music, which is always what I loved to listen to.

Jay: I remember being super young and being at my grandparents, they had this xylophone thing but only with 4 metal keys, and one mallet. From the age of 4, I’d be at family functions and I’d rock out on these four notes, and hitting the wooden part too. That was my earliest musical experience. I see that as the beginning of a long and healthy relationship with music. I always want to have that feeling, and bring the music back to that.

T: Do you still get nervous when you perform?

Emory: Not to the same extent. I get excited. It’s like you’re taking on a certain responsibility when you get on stage and I think it should be taken pretty seriously. If you are going to be up there, you might as well take it on.

Rob: I play in lots of projects where I don’t really get nervous anymore, so when I do, I actually really enjoy it now. For our last show I actually felt legitmally nervous, hoping that I was going to remember everything as it was my first gig with the band but it was actually alright, it was good, it made it fun.

T: So what’s next for Tundra Fun?

Jay: Lots of writing and so on. Keep doing what we’re doing.

Emory: Well we have a show in a couple hours. Gotta go by Josh’s garage, pick up our stuff.

T: That’s where you play?

Josh: Yeah, that’s where we jam. Bonafide garage band. We gotta come up with a clever name for it.

T: Anything Torontette readers should know about you? Deep dark secrets?

Emory: Josh looks strikingly hot as a woman. Laughs.

Rob: We’re playing May 4th at Czehoski. Come check us out.

After the interview, it was time to see these boys do their thing under the bright lights at the Silver Dollar Room. Having not seen Tundra Fun perform live I didn’t know what to expect. It only took a couple songs for me to realize that these guys know what they’re doing, and more importantly, have fun doing what they’re doing. That small stage came alive with fun, funky, spontaneous tracks that made me pine for Venice Beach, oceanside. It’s music that is the perfect soundtrack for wind-blown hair, salty skin, top-down, golden sun Pacific Coast highway road trips. We can all use a little bit of this in our concrete jungle, can’t we? Give it a go.

Edited for clarity and length

Sunday can be your fun day

If anybody’s like me, Sundays are normally blah-filled. The weekend is setting, Monday is looming and if you live for the weekend, like me, you’re usually tired and nursing a hangover. Instead of falling victim to the “Sunday Funk” (a universal term that deserves capitalization), here are some suggestions a la Torontette.

1. Get your errands and chores, like groceries, laundry, coffee with that old friend you never really liked but feel obliged to (does that count?) on Saturday.

2. Make a brunch date. This is my favourite way to start a Sunday, even if it happens at 2 in the afternoon.

3. Find something fun to do in the evening because as research shows this is when the funk gets its stinkiest. Check out a live show (like Jakob Dylan/Neko Case show tonight), catch a flick, go for dinner or have friends over and order in.

No matter what though, even if you have to do responsible adult things, you will need a killer soundtrack. Songs that make you tickle inside. Songs that make you forget the weekend is ending. Here are 5 to get you going on your Sunday Funk playlist.

Back of the Card (James & Evander remix) – Man/Miracle (download)

I Feel Bonnie – Hot Chip (download)

A New Word to Say (James Yuill remix) – Bright Light Bright Light (download)

I Think I Like U 2 (Breakbot remix) – Jamaica (download)

Psychic Chasms (BRAHMS) – Neon Indian (download)

Weekend concert picks: April 23-25

 

TONIGHT

ECHO & THE BUNNYMENPhoenix Concert Hall • Liverpool band formed in 1978. I’m sure that’s before many of you were born. They had many UK Top 10 hits. Great 80s revival band

YUKON BLONDE feat. Sports: the Band & Fox JawsThe Garrison • They played over 300 gigs in 3 years, under their old name, AlphaBaby and have supported such bands as Ladyhawk, The Constantines and Women. Think modern-day Fleetwood Mac, or Crosby, Stills & Nash.

OK GO w/ Earl Greyhound & The BoozeThe Mod Club • They released their 3rd studio album this January with killer single “This Too Shall Pass”. Great support bands too…I was recently introduced to Earl Greyhound, and instantly loved it.

SATURDAY

HAWKSLEY WORKMANMassey Hall • I’ve been a huge fan of Hawksley for years thanks to a dear friend. Even if you don’t know the music, GO. It’s impossible not to like. And he is damn sexy ladies.

WE ARE WOLVESThe Garrison • Montreal indie-rock band who released their 3rd album this past October. They played their first show at Concordia and have been frequently playlisted on CBC Radio 3. Thumbs up for franco-indie.

DIGITAL/MAJOR LAZERSound Academy • Sure to be a wild show, get ready to sweat, dance and be blown away. And wear good walking shoes…it’s never easy to catch a cab from the Docks.

SUNDAY

JAKOB DYLAN & THREE LEGS feat. Neko Case & Kelly HoganThe Phoenix Concert Hall • Son of the great Bob Dylan, Jakob has branched off from his previous band, The Wallflowers to go solo. Not surprisingly, his voice is magnetic. He performs with special guests Kelly Hogan and Neko Case, who does the solo thing and is also part of The New Pornographers.

What a great RAC

Remix Artist Collective, better known as RAC is made up of three young blokes who don’t let international waters get in the way of them making music.

Andre Allen Anjos (pictured above) is originally from Porto, Portugal but now lives in in Portland. He is the founder of RAC and has been remixing, producing and writing music for years, regardless of his young age. Andrew Maury, only in his 20s, comes to us from NYC and has been the live sound engineer for Ra Ra Riot since February 2008. And Crookram (Chris Angelovski) is a musical producer from the Netherlands. Together this trio brings us new incarnations of the songs we love. They started making their own remixes out of boredom for the current ‘club’ remixes that were out there. RAC is known for transforming songs into something different, something that hopefully, stirs up emotions rather than the brazen and over-produced mash-ups coming our way.

In a recent interview with Stereo Subversion Anjos said, “I’m really trying to make good music, you know? I don’t… I mean it’d be nice to get people to dance, but that’s not my point. I just want people to appreciate music for what it is. I think we’ve gotten lucky with this whole thing because people are getting into this: they’re liking something with a little different angle than a club mix or something. I don’t mean to bash club mixes, they have their time and place, but there’s nobody else trying to do what we do.”

Anjos makes most of the mixes himself (with collaboration of course) but Maury and Crookram have their own tags as well: (RAC Maury Mix) and (RAC Crookram Mix) respectively. Here is a compilation of RAC remixes. Some of them I even prefer to the original. Perhaps you might too. And perhaps you might discover that there can be more to remixes than club beats, “vs.”, parties & bullshit. Sorry Miley.

Sleeping Lessons (RAC Mix) – The Shins (download)

Home (RAC Mix) – Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros (download)

Magnificent (RAC Mix) – U2 (download)

Carrie (RAC Mix) – Speak (download)

Sweet Disposition (RAC Mix) – The Temper Trap (download)

Worse it Gets (RAC Mix) – Penguin Prison (download)

Reminder (RAC Mix) – Honeythieves (download)

Heavy Cross (RAC Mix) – The Gossip (download)

Too Fake (RAC Mix) – Hockey (download)

Catch ’em on myspace: http://www.myspace.com/remixartistcollective

Weekend concert picks: April 16-18

White Hinterland 

TONIGHT

D-Sisive, Okay City (hip hop)
The Drake Underground
$8 at the door
www.myspace.com/dsisive
http://www.myspace.com/okaycityhiphop

Lullabye Arkestra and Guests (garage rock/metal)
The Garrison
$10 at the door
www.myspace.com/lullabyearkestra

 

SATURDAY

The Tallest Man on Earth, Nurses (acoustic folk)
El Mocambo
$13.50 at the door
www.myspace.com/thetallestmanonearth
www.myspace.com/nurses 
 
The Coast, Dustin Bentall (indie pop-rock)
The Horseshoe
$8 at the door
www.myspace.com/thecoastmusic
www.myspace.com/dustinbentall
 
The Junction, The Darcys & Amos the Transparent (indie-rock)
Lee’s Palace
$10 at the door
www.myspace.com/thejunction
www.myspace.com/itsthedarcys
www.myspace.com/amosthetransparent
 
PS I Love You, Nich Worby and the Milkwood Sparrows (indie pop-rock)
Garage behind 102 Ossington
$10 at the door
http://www.myspace.com/psiloveyouband
www.myspace.com/nichworby

 

SUNDAY

DOSH, White Hinterland, Foxes in Fiction (experimental indie/electronica/folk rock)
The Drake Undergound
$12 at the door
www.myspace.com/doshanticon
www.myspace.com/whitehinterland