Concert Reviews

The Wooden Sky @ La Sala Rossa

Presented by POP Montreal, Blue Skies Turn Black, and CMW


Ty Segall + La Luz + The Nymphets @ Club Soda

Presented by POP Montreal, Blue Skies Turn Black, and CJLO 1690AM


Panda Bear + Blues Control + Ramzi @ Rialto Theatre

Presented by POP Montreal, Blue Skies Turn Black, Monster Energy, and Urbania


Ty Segall + La Luz + The Nymphets @ Club Soda

Photo by the illustrious Susan Moss, courtesy of POP Montreal

The hot ticket at POP Montreal this year was undoubtedly Saturday night's triple bill at Club Soda. A sold-out crowd gathered on the corner of Saint-Laurent and Ste-Catherine street, amongst the hookers and hustlers, ready to show their love for the garage psych powerhouse, Ty Segall and his band.


Have Metal, Will Travel: Kvelertak in Ottawa & NYC

Kvelertak

A couple of Sundays ago, a friend and I made one of the best/worst decisions in recent memory. Norwegian mixed metal arts masters Kvelertak delivered a swift karate chop of heavy rock to the chest of Canada's capital city, and we, at the cost of sleep, sanity and safety, had ringside seats. That's the good stuff, but more about that later.


Red Mass @ Quai des Brumes

For the past six years, since the demise of his last band CPC Gangbangs, Roy Vucino has been crafting an ongoing music and art project known as Red Mass. With a revolving door membership both on stage and on record, Red Mass has finally evolved into what Vucino had envisioned almost a decade ago. With a core of himself, Hannah Lewis (keyboards/vocals), Jonathan Bigras (drums), and Phillippe Caouette (bass), set to tour this summer and their first full length album, A Hopeless Noise: The Story of Diamond Girl, soon to be released, Red Mass took to the stage at Quai des Brumes on Friday night and showed all in attendance that this band is ready for the next step.


The Head and the Heart + Basia Bulat @ Theatre Corona

On a Saturday evening in late March, Basia Bulat played to a sold out crowd at the Corona Theatre in Little Burgundy. Her performance was incredibly pleasurable both audibly and visually. The packed audience was quite a mixed demographic of both older and younger folks. She performed on stage with a bass player and drummer, while she played keyboards. For a three piece they presented an astonishingly powerful, unanticipated sound. They played really well together, kicking out tight grooves, playful rhythms alongside Basia Bulat's almost lofty cloud-like vocals.


Noah Gundersen + Armon Jay + Cade @ Petit Campus

Armon Jay is a self-described hillbilly originating from Chatanooga, Tennessee. His southern accent is mild and undistinguished in a city like Montreal, but he likes to use it as a conversation pitch. Mixing stereotypes of hillbilly and urban hippy, he gulps down half a "mystique" cider, laughs at the irony of a redneck drinking a cider, then switches voices and advocates for a gluten free diet.


Andrew W.K. + Biblical @ Foufounes Electriques

I have lived in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside and travelled solo through the Middle East, but for some reason, since moving to Montreal four years ago, I have been terrified to set foot in les Foufounes Électriques. I didn't even know it was called Foufounes until the night of the show. I always just thought of it as "that place on St. Catherine's that seems like it's seen a lot of knife fights." That's probably not fair. If you have never been to Foufounes it's actually pretty impressive on the inside, meaning huge. It has that sickly sweet bar smell and gives off an air of stickiness.


Childish Gambino @ Metropolis

I never really listened to rap growing up; I had a hard time relating to the lyrics. In the last two years, however, I have developed an appreciation for the genre, and I owe most of that to Childish Gambino. Although I shared almost none of the experiences described in the lyrics from his 2011 album Camp, I related to the tone, the nerdy Nintendo and cartoon references, and the jazzy R&B music. Most of all, it was Gambino's quick wit that hooked me.


Dance Laury Dance + Aly + Barrel Proof @ Petit Campus

Dance Laury Dance is energetic heavy metal and rock 'n' roll that is sorely missed these days, and the punch I received to the neck in their mosh pit goes to show their fan-base is always down to party. Dance Laury Dance took the stage at Petit Campus March 22nd with fellow Quebec band Aly (or so their album states, though their Facebook page will tell you it's "Aly The Band") and Montrealers Barrel Proof.


Cut Copy + Jessy Lanza @ Théâtre Corona

Upon entering the Théâtre Corona, I had no idea that my ticket of admission also doubled as a one-way train ticket to an elevated state of mind. Before the show, I was stressed about the school year coming to an end, and all of the exams and final papers piling up made me question whether or not going to a concert in the midst of the mayhem would serve me any good.

Nonetheless, Cut Copy and Jessy Lanza obliterated my self-doubt. They conducted a fast-paced joy ride, which allowed me to travel from a dark and troubled mind to a land of care free-joy.


Snarky Puppy + Funky Knuckles @ La Sala Rossa

I had an embarrassing moment a couple of weeks ago. My buddy sent me an excited message that Snarky Puppy was coming to Montreal, and I had never heard of them. Knowing that this friend usually shares my taste in music, it definitely merited investigation. A few YouTube videos later, I was completely hooked. Snarky Puppy turned out to be right up my alley: the perfect mix of funk, soul, hip-hop, and jazz. I knew this was not a concert to be missed.


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