As their home country burns (quite literally) and pandemic fatigue ravages the hearts and minds of most Canadians, Toronto-based Ducks LTD. releases, or re-releases, in this case, an album that is powerfully optimistic in the face of emotional and physical decay.
Село (Selo) is the second EP to come from Tired Cossack, AKA Stiv Halas. Meaning “village” in Ukrainian (yes, I did have Google translate that,) the title sets the conceptual tone for the EP. A village provides a binate metaphor which can be soothing and stifling all at once: a support system of love, kinship, and friendship on one hand, but also a small, stagnant coop.
WEED MAN SON is the second album from Dill the Giant, Winnipeg based rap artist and first generation Jamaican-Canadian. Judging by the name of the album, the most glaringly obvious theme is smoking up, and the album doesn’t fall short at every attempt to fulfill its ethos.
Ghost Twin released their newest album, Love Songs for End Times, on Friday, June 4th via Artoffact Records. Their first single and video, “Pet Cemetery,” is a real step up the magical ladder for this local heartwarming duo. The sound is dialed in and focused. It’s powerful and dark, mixing with quirky and sad lyrics. Each song works perfectly with the rest as part of a bigger picture and the visuals are so tight. I had a chance to call them up on the video phone and have a chat about it so I took it.
Back in April, Ian Bell found himself in a pickle. When his background in sociology couldn’t guarantee him secure employment due to a global pandemic, paired with any and all plans for attending live music/art gatherings evaporated in front of him for similar reasons, Bell found himself taking up manual labour in the outdoors.
Since 1988, Washington D.C. artist Kurt Heasley has been rocking through genre and style with his band Lilys. Call them shoegaze, dreampop, post-rock, or grunge, the spirit of Lilys is to pursue the purity of art. Over the years, Kurt and Lilys have been compared to My Bloody Valentine, The Monkees, and The Zombies, but there’s no pinning down the sound of Kurt Heasley.
As its title suggests, the debut album by Toronto-based saxophonist Jesse Ryan sees the gifted young instrumentalist building musical bridges between traditional jazz idioms and the Afro-Caribbean rhythms of his native Trinidad & Tobago. The improvisational nature of jazz always appealed to Ryan, as it provided, in his own words, “a space for collaboration, cultural exchange, and [a place] where old and new worlds meet.”
Jazz, like folk and blues, is a form of music in which one is largely indebted to the contributions of one’s musical forebears. Ultimately, the goal is to take the lessons learned from past traditions and inject them with new life while still paying homage.
Wild Pink invites listeners to a festival of sonic dancing on A Billion Little Lights. Their unique brand of synth-y folk blends strings with pads and everything in between. As one song melts into the next, Wild Pink slowly constructs a clear ambience that cerebrally targets the feeling associated with chasing bliss.
Number One is a dreamy, heavily electronic reconstruction of pop music. Littered with industrial influences and, at times, hyper pop motifs, the debut album of Carlyn Bezic, aka Jane Inc, is one hell of a statement.