First Class Riot; Big Fun Nearly Under the Sun

As we’ve mentioned at Stylus, Big Fun Festival is approaching quickly. The last weekend of January is when it’s happening, venues all over the Exchange is where it’s happening. Exciting times if you’re in that whole indie/folk scene here, or if you’re curious to check any of it out.

After a Softcore practice this past weekend, polishing our tunes up for the festival, David Dobbs and I listened to Big Fun’s compilation in its entirety. Each of us having been veterans of the Winnipeg scene for a handful of years, we really nerded out listening to this. The comp kicks off with three songs that are five minutes plus, which, imho, is a pretty bold move. Regardless, the Mahogany Frog track (an exciting preview of their upcoming album) is astronomical, The Departures’ grungy single (off their upcoming album recorded at Hotel2Tango) ingeniously delivers on the hype, and Narwhal Strike, a breakthrough act as of late, show off on their spaced-out pop track. Despite their length, they give a good introduction into the fest and what you can expect.

Elsewhere on the comp, it was nice to hear from other talked-about bands whose recorded stuff hasn’t been easy to find, like Slow Dancers, Atomic Don and the Black Sunrise, Jenny Berkel, and Spirit Children. And Beauchamp’s remix of Tim Hoover is some solid head-bob inducing trip-hop.

With a collection of such known and unknown local bands all in one spot, we found it impossible not to reminisce of the MySpace days. But given the way things have gone, there’s no better way to hear today’s batch of indie bands than diving into this compilation. DO IT!

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