Blurred Lines

Friday FTW: Blurred lines? Ask first!

You’ve probably heard the tune, though you may not even know it—it’s definitely a candidate for 2013′s song of the summer, alongside Miley Cyrus’ also contentious We Can’t Stop. It’s floating in the air on every patio, blasting from cruising cars, oozing along the sidewalks in the club districts. “#BLURREDLINES” billboards loom over this city…. More »

Laura Lloyd, Jasamine White-Gluz, Ben Rayner, Alaska B. Melissa Auf der Maur

Does the music industry need a gender count?

It probably comes as no surprise that an audience for a discussion about women and music would be filled with, well, women. Such was the case in mid-June when Melissa Auf der Maur led a thoughtful conversation at Toronto’s NXNE festival titled “Women in Music: More Than Ever Before.” Auf der Maur was joined by… More »

Wavelength Roadshow Artist Incubator participant Fresh Snow

Wavelength Roadshow hits the road

Where do you go after you’ve successfully presented upwards of a thousand bands at hundreds of shows and festivals in Toronto, including notable early sets by some of this century’s most beloved independent Canadian musicians? If you’re Jonathan Bunce and his fellow Wavelength programmers, you get out of town—literally. This weekend, the Wavelength Roadshow hits… More »


One Track Mind: Anciients – Heart of Oak – Raise The Sun

While crushing stoner metal is the easiest way to describe the vast, fuzzed-out sound of Vancouver-based Anciients, to limit them to this description is a disservice. Beneath the fat, distorted guitar tone and acrid smokiness is a deep vulnerability. There are moments of wonder, of tentative exploration on their debut, Heart of Oak, that speaks… More »

jay smith

Remembering Nova Scotia musician Jay Smith

This year’s Canadian Music Week was memorable for its surprises and pleasures. Easily overwhelmed by packed schedules, I narrowed my festival picks down to acts I probably wouldn’t get a chance to see again. There was Iceland’s electronic Apparat Organ Quartet, a keyboard-heavy band whose surreal performance swung from fist-pumping metal to Daft Punk–driven electronica…. More »

One Track Mind: Eyeswithoutaface — Warguts — Beautiful and Cruel

Eyeswithoutaface is not a subtle band. They take their name from a 1960 French horror film wherein a demented doctor cuts the faces off young women in a series of botched attempts to graft them onto his disfigured daughter. The album title for their latest full-length, Warguts, depicts a soldier, dog tags around his neck,… More »

One Track Mind: Purity Control – Coping EP – Remote Viewing

Coping is the latest EP from experimental hardcore act Purity Control. Released on November 20th as a High Anxiety/ No Ideas joint venture, only 550 copies of the six-song 7” were pressed. Based in Toronto, the group refer to themselves as “aneurysm-core,” and for good reason, their songs are difficult, broken things that challenge the… More »

Best albums of 2012

Among the artists who made my 10 favourite albums of 2012, one takes listeners to the ocean, one is dirty and one is a doctor. No, I don’t mean Frank Ocean, Dirty Projectors and Dr. John, though all of these deserved consideration. For me, the standout records included those by Hey Ocean!, Dirty Ghosts and Dr. Dog… More »

Screen Shot 2012-12-11 at 4.56.53 PM

WTF Wednesday: Katy Perry announces that she’s not a feminist

Katy Perry was recently named Billboard’s Woman of the Year, but she’d like you to know that she’s not a feminist. Billboard tweeted part of the pop singer’s acceptance speech, which goes: “I am not a feminist, but I do believe in the strength of women.” As you might have guessed, this caused quite an angry… More »


More than a pretty postcard: Jem Cohen’s Cape Breton obsession

If you spend time in any of the Maritime arts communities, chances are you’ll meet a back-to-the-lander. In the early 1970s, many artists, hippies and draft dodgers left the comforts of urban life to head east in search of fresh air and cheap land. I’ve heard amazing stories of long-haired painters trying to fit into… More »