Sunday July 30, 2017

Come What May

Tomorrow (July 31st) marks the 10 year anniversary of the release of Attack In Black's first LP Marriage. If you're of a certain age and happen to take part in the southern Ontario music scene, this was a record that had seismic impact. Living in the Niagara region it certainly feels that way. The stories and struggles surrounding this release are a pretty essential part of the scene lore around here.

Despite its influence it's odd to think nostalgically about this album, particularly because the four members of the band have themselves moved (both collectively and as solo artists) so aggressively away from this sound. One never got the impression that Marriage, ostensibly a pop-punk record with a few potentially radio-friendly singles, ever sat comfortably with the group. It was only four months before the folky, eclectic, low-fi follow up The Curve of the Earth was released, and it's that record, not so much Marriage, that foreshadowed the last 10 years of Daniel Romano, Spencer Burton, Ian Kehoe, and Ian Romano's musical output.

I hate to write this on the cusp of an announcement and find myself immediately behind on the news, but there may or may not be something announced tomorrow. Dine Alone's released a short video on their social channels commemorating the 10 year mark. That's probably all it is, just a little nod to mark the date. But it's possible that something's up. Marriage did see a Record Store Day reissue a few years back, but could something further be in the works? I've never considered the Attack In Black members to be particularly sentimental about their own output, so I have my doubts about some of the more fantastical speculation I've seen online, but we'll see Monday.

Of Note

Speaking of Dine Alone, the label has announced the debut LP from Julie & The Wrong Guys. The band, lead by former Eric's Trip member Julie Doiron, features the rhythm section of Toronto hardcore band Cancer Bats (Mike Peters and Jaye Schwarzer), along with Edmonton singer / songwriter Eamon McGrath. While this project's been percolating for some time now (there are two 7" singles floating around from as far back as 2012), this album and the supporting tours will mark Doiron's major return to music after some time away. A video for the new song "You Wanted What I Wanted" is now online to check out. Full details on the 10 song record and a fairly in-depth account of its recording can be found at the label. Look for the album on September 8th.

The debut 7" from Vancouver's Sore Points arrives this week on Hosehead. The band, which features members of Nervous Talk and Spectres, churns out a tough, fast take on late 70s punk (the Ramones and Damned are namedropped in the album announcement, and not without merit). In a modern context, the band feels a little like Night Birds without the surf guitar. The four song 7" was recorded by Felix Fung at Little Red Sounds, and it's pretty damn fun. Check it out.

Hamilton alt-country trio Elliott BROOD are an important band in my personal pantheon. Their Tin Type EP (everyone knows "Oh Alberta") arrived in my life just as I was starting to seriously explore the Canadian indie music world outside of the punk umbrella. The band announced that their fifth proper full length, titled Ghost Gardens, will be available on September 15th via Paper Bag. One of the 11 new songs is "`Til The Sun Comes Up Again," which you can hear below.

Welland, Ontario hardcore band Zero have unveiled a new single titled "Can You Help Me?" paired with the b-side "Confounded." The four-piece, which features Ross Miller of The Dirty Nil, Single Mothers, and SIDEMAN, is following up their 2016 Say No More EP. Cassettes of the new material should be available soon. Amusingly, to me at least, Discogs lists this as the 81st band with the name Zero in their catalog.

Toronto garage / psych / noise-pop act Fake Palms have announced a September 15th release date for their new full length Pure Mind, a joint release between Buzz Records and Pleasence Records. The band recorded the follow-up to their self-titled 2015 debut with a pair of big name Canadian producers: Graham Walsh of Holy Fuck and Josh Korody of Beliefs (the latter of which produced the recent Dilly Dally and Dirty Nil records). The first track from the new project, titled "Glass Walls," brings some of their 60s influences to the fore (just listen to those harmonies in the chorus).

Pleasence has also announced the signing of Toronto post-punk act WHIMM. The band's frenetic new single "Town Hall" was produced by Dean Tzenos of Odonis Odonis at Union Sound. It will appear on the record A Stare Ajar which will see a release later this year. While we don't know a lot about that album as of yet, it will feature some added strings from guests such as Anna Mayberry (HSY / ANAMAI).

Ghettoblaster debuted the video for New Swears' "Halos in Hell," which appears on the Ottawa band's recently released third LP and the Magic of Horses (Dine Alone). The band continues to tour in support of the record, with upcoming shows including an appearance at the Wolfe Island Music Festival.

Punknews.org premiered the new EP from Oakville's Dead Broke. The three song set, titled Nice Words, is now available over at BandCamp. The four-piece will be touring their indie rock / punk sound down to The Fest in Gainesville, Florida this October.

While you're at Punknews, make sure you check out the second new single from Vancouver's Woolworm. "Seer" will appear on the band's sophomore LP Deserve To Die, due out on August 25th on Mint Records. It gives a pretty good sense of the album's "hardcore band plays moody alt-rock" vibe and shows off some of the big production values they got working with Jesse Gander at Rain City (White Lung, Japandroids).

The site also premiered a video for the stomping rock'n'roll song "Sticks & Stones" by Montreal punk / psychobilly group The Creepshow. The song will appear on Death at my Door, a September 15th release through Stomp Records.

Montreal pop-punk act Mansbridge have announced a new 10 track LP titled Juxtapose. It'll see an August 18th release from My Fingers! My Brain! Records and Maps & Continents Records. The anthemic single "Cheese Is Wasted on the Rich" was premiered over at Dying Scene this week.

Winnipeg's Propagandhi have announced headlining tour dates in support of their upcoming LP Victory Lap. They'll hit a handful of Canadian cities (London, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Vancouver) and both coasts of the US in October and November.

Toronto's Career Suicide will take their Machine Response tour to Europe in early August, playing Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Russia, and Ukraine in a whirlwind two weeks of shows. You can find those dates at Facebook.

Finally I'd like to give one last thanks to St. Catharines, Ontario's Warehouse concert hall for sponsoring the July month of Some Party. Look for shows this week at Warehouse from Bleach Bath, Plagueworm, and Heavy Hearts.

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