After much Google detective work that should not have been necessary, I believe I've sussed out a few details on N0V3L. The band's newly signed to Flemish Eye in Canada and Meat Machine Records elsewhere. Officially, they have a pair of songs online, "Will to Power" and "Suspicion," both of which are a great deal of fun in a retro Devo-influenced new wave mode. Other than an extremely Kraftwerk band photo and a slate of European tour dates, nothing else has been revealed.
Unofficially, it appears that the group is from Victoria. It sure sounds like the five-piece features the talents of one Jon Varley of Painted Fruit and potentially members of Vancouver mixed-media collective Crack Cloud. There's a dead-ringer for Patrick Flegel (Women/Cindy Lee) in that photo too. Who knows though, we're in the mystique-building stage of the PR cycle. Here's some delightful pseudo-revolutionary nonsense in that regard:
"N0V3L is an engine of entertainment and social criticism weaponizing rhythm and melody against the unsound powers that be. Rigid new-wave, angular funk, polyrhythmic disco and intellectual punk together approximate a radical new sound that forms the principal means of ideological circulation. Drawing influence from such mindful predecessors as Devo and Public Enemy, N0V3L offers an empowering, politically-charged stance in fierce opposition to the modern cultural landscape, a forceful call to mindfulness and moral resistance."
One day I'll get it straight, but regardless these songs are pretty great. That's all that matters.
"Mildew Mildew fearlessly creates songs that unravel like stories; their structures being both dynamic and deeply colourful as they unfurl. This track particularly, is not a far cry from the spastic and borderless creativity delivered by the early works of both Modest Mouse and Built to Spill or the trademark rhythmic tension seen in the carefree demeanour of Pavement's percussionists."
Mildew Mildew features vocals and guitar from Nolan Jakupovski, Tristan Sousa on percussion, and bassist Cameron Leslie. The group is set to play the Dupe Shop on November 16 with Spirit Desire and Fond.
Weakerthans frontman John K. Samson appears on a new split single with Brooklyn singer-songwriter Kevin Devine. The set will feature Samson covering the Christine Fellows song "Saturday Night on Utopia Parkway," with an original by Devine on the flip titled "I Wrote It Down for You."
The release is set for November 30 from Bad Timing Records, part of an ongoing series of splits featuring Devine and likeminded artists. Past editions have featured Craig Finn, David Bazan, and Petal. Samson and Fellows meanwhile are slated to release the latter's new record Roses on the Vine later this week on their label Vivat Virtute.
Toronto psych-pop act ZONES has a new video online for the song "Wine Cop." It appears on The State of Light, an 8-track set released October 5 on Hand Drawn Dracula. In the premiere at Tiny Mix Tapes ZONES principal Derek McKeon commented:
"This was the first track I wrote for the LP and its loose, off the grid feeling rhythm section completely inspired the direction and sound of the record. It emerged out of a series of magical jams and opened a door to a whole sonic world I needed to explore, full of midi slap bass and all"
Australian animator Benjamin Portas directed the "Wine Cop" clip. A ZONES release show is coming up at Toronto's Dance Cave on November 22, featuring support from New Chance, Moon King's Daniel Benjamin, and World Sounds.
The new full-length from Vancouver's Autogramm came and went at the end of the summer, and I missed it entirely. The band's first full-length What R U Waiting 4? is a polished power-pop record, brimming with sunny, synthy rock songs sporting a smooth 80s sensibility that draws from the Cars and Gary Numan. The album arrived on September 21 from Nevado.
Autogramm's a trio with quite a busy, jet-setting pedigree. On vocals, guitar, and synth you'll find Jiffy Marx of Brooklyn’s Hard Drugs and Vancouver’s Blood Meridian. CC Voltage of Berlin’s Dysnea Boys, London’s Loyalties and Vancouver’s Black Halos and Spitfires plays bass for the group. Behind the drum kit, Autogramm features The Silo, previously of Black Mountain, Lightning Dust, and Destroyer.
Speaking of things I missed, Toronto four-piece hardcore punk act Choices Made released a scorcher of a three-song EP in September titled Don't Settle For Them. The band (rightfully) claims influence from vets like Good Riddance and Sick of It All. The group recorded this past August at Toronto's Overkill Studios with frontman Josh Marostega producing. Steve Rizun (The Flatliners, Junior Battles) mixed and mastered the set.
Choices Made features Marostega on vocals with guitarist Steve Medeiros, bassist Andrew Wright, and drummer Dicky Siregar.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, Toronto's Brendan Ferrie has released his first track under the name Dance Move Cops. "Party Boys" is a moody synth-backed alt-rock tune, the first track from an upcoming EP titled Spy Plane.
...and from there you can whiplash back to some absolutely tortured anger from Hamilton's Stay Down. The band recently released a blistering six-song EP titled Artless Whimper. Vince Soliveri engineered, mixed, and mastered the set. There's a galloping 45-second song on here called "Gripping" that's pretty fucking awesome (and pretty fucking dire).
New Pleasure, the sophomore record from Montreal garage-punks PRIORS is out this Friday, and the PR push is in overdrive. You can now preview songs from the record premiering over at Stereogum, The Joy of Violent Movement, and Raven Sings The Blues, not to mention the track I ran a few weeks ago at Punknews.
New Pleasure arrives November 16 on Slovenly. On this record, PRIORS are Chance Hutchison, Drew Demers, Seb Godin, Alan Hildebrandt, and Stuart Buckley, members who've (currently or formally) played in Sonic Avenues, New Vogue, the Steve Adamyk Band, and The Famines.
Fuudge is the brainchild of David Bujold and he's credited with most of the songwriting, instrumentation, and recording on the new record. The band shows some serious range on Les Matricides: go compare a loud and crunchy track like "On est une gang de moumounes" to the breezy pop of the single "Toi aussi."
Toronto post-punk group FRIGS recently recorded a TOURPARTOUT Session in the Belgian city of Ghent, performing their song "Gemini" in the striking ’t Kuipke, a world-famous cycling track in Ghent's Citadelpark.
The studio version of "Gemini" appears on the band's recent Arts & Crafts LP Basic Behaviour.
Finally this week, I wanted to give a shout out to This Is Pop, the radio show that runs on Edmonton's CJSR FM hosted by Benjamin of Real Sickies. To celebrate 100 episodes the show put together a compilation LP titled This Is Pop Canada Vol 1, with a track listing that's about as Some Party approved as you can get.
It makes me want to get in the game...