CJLO recently launched a compilation album for their artist outreach program – which helps support local artists by recording and promoting their tracks. The launch party was a musical sweat fest. Highlights of the evening were The This Many Boyfriends Club and Blood, two local bands with decidedly different sounds, whose alchemic notes caught our attention. Below is a review of their latest releases along with the debut album of local artist Ari Swan.
Blood – Kasey/Organism and CJLO Compilation 2013
Blood is David Kleiser, Fraser Roodbol (formerly of Annette’s Beach Party), Ben Griffiths, and Andrew Bates. My ears first perked up to their sound during the CJLO launch party when Blood sang “It takes a lot of cum to find the right one”, a lyrically crass image that merges with the psychedelic smoothness of the band’s sound to create a clever insightful image reflecting on the visceral experiences of searching for connection. Their sound is decidedly retro but blends more modern elements towards a sound that’s been absent on the indie scene for quite some time. There’s often a danger when it comes to making music that refers to the rock days of old, but Blood isn’t offering a caricature, they are translating it. Of the four tracks available by Blood, “Teen Jesus” and “Kasey” are the standouts. Overall, this sound’s pretty dope and I look forward to seeing what a full length from these guys will sound like.
See Them: At CFC on October 31st, they’ll be the dudes dressed up as Neutral Blood Hotel and promise to play two songs from Avery Island and two songs from Aeroplane.
Hear them: http://bloodsongs.bandcamp.com/
This Many Boyfriends Club has been pretty darn prolific in the last year coming out with two more EPs. Tracks for “Die or Get Rich Trying”, mixed and mastered by Marshall Vaillancourt (Archery Guidld), were recorded as part of the CJLO Artist Outreach Program. The Boyfriends thoroughly nailed it when playing the tunes live – giving them an even more ragged edge that I actually prefer to the recorded tracks. That being said, since their Ep Anything Is Popsicle, the Boyfriends have added quite a bit of punk rock to their dandypunk twee pop cake mix. Danger-Winslow Danger’s grittier vocals are a pleasant surprise. Top tracks on Die or Get Rich Trying are “Sylvie” and “Alright/Already”. Available as a B Side on a limited cassette tape edition of Die or Get Rich Trying is a bonus EP A Pumpkin Like You, which feels like a musical step between Anything is Popsicle and Die or Get Rich Trying. A Pumpkin Like You, stronger as a coherent hole than Die or Get Rich Trying, boasts some fun frolicky tracks that are closer to the band’s twee beginnings. Our favourites are “a little fucking candor” and “polly anne marie.”
See Them: Nov. 2nd at CFC with Smokes and White Like Fire.
“I’ll build you a symphony, if only you’d ask” says Ari Swan’s page. Well, we’re definitely gonna be asking (politely of course) now that we’ve heard Swan’s debut album.
I first heard of Ari Swan when she played with Gabrielle Papillion, one of my favourite Canadian folk artists. Upon further research, it’s pretty clear to me that Swan has got quite a bit of experience under her belt including Folly and the Hunter, Little Scream, Heirloom, Lakes of Canada, and Chimneys. Recently, Ari Swan has released Symphony Plastique, an EP of her solo project and it’s pretty darn rad. Violin driven pop is a hard thing to pull off, I’ll admit it’s something I often find overbearing, but Ari Swan does it masterfully and with charm. Recorded by Jamie Thompson (Unicorns), Symphony Plastique seems to have been a two person album with Ari Swan on violin and vocals and Thompson on percussion and effects. A two person art pop symphony that weaves loops and experiments with all the things a violin and a voice can do. Impressive, very impressive. “I’ve Come with Nothing” and “Words that Follow” are our favourites.