Some Party is a newsletter sharing the latest in independent Canadian rock'n'roll, curated more-or-less weekly by Adam White. Each edition explores punk, garage, psych, and otherwise uncategorizable indie rock, drawing lines from proto to post and taking some weird diversions along the way.
While on tour supporting his recent You've Changed LP Transistor Sister 2, Shotgun Jimmie took some time off the road to record a stripped-down little four-song EP with Saskatoon's Little Jack Films. The resulting set's titled VHS after the vintage tech used in its creation (a pair of late-80s cameras - an RCA CC300 and Panasonic Omnimovie to be specific - with audio recorded to cassette). The label describes the throwback sound captured in the October 11 session:
"VHS EP features four unreleased gems revealing a more vulnerable and intimate side of Shotgun Jimmie. VHS EP is a solo recording of voice and guitar enhanced with heavy doses of atmospheric tape warble and warm room tone, a vintage sound to perfectly compliment this document of Jimmie's channelling of lo-fi gurus like Jason Molina and Will Oldham."
You can stream the new tracks at Bandcamp now, with Little Jack's accompanying short available on YouTube.
The EP comes on the heels of Transistor Sister 2, Jimmie's summer sequel to 2011's Transistor Sister, and the follow-up to 2016's Field of Trampolines LP. The album featured a backing band comprised of Ladyhawk's Ryan Peters, Jay Baird of Do Make Say Think, and José Miguel Contreras from By Divine Right.
Sewercide Records first announced a 7" compilation of east coast Canadian hardcore back in the summer, but we've not heard much about it since. With the record still not due until early 2020, last week the label decided to throw out a track last week to help hold us over. "Seaside Sickness" is the first tune available from Misanthropic Minds, a Halifax-based duo comprised of Booji Boys' Cody Googoo and his Alienation bandmate Dave Brown. Gabe Beale recorded the caustic track this past September.
Sewercide previously announced that the comp would feature both Misanthropic Minds and the Booji Boys, not to mention the related group B.P.S. (Brain Pollution Syndrome - they had a tape out on Sewercide earlier in the year). That family of bands will appear on the record along with Charlottetown punk groups Antibodies and Warsh, and the Halifax D-beat hardcore acts Fragment and Cutie.
Speaking of Warsh, the PEI punk act has a searing new EP online titled Burning Urge. It's the band's first proper release following their attention-grabbing demo from February. Cassette copies of the album are available in limited supply from High Trash Media.
Warsh recorded these four tracks (about five blistering minutes of material in total) back in August at Terry's Temple Studios. The group features vocalist Sophia Tweel, guitarist Teajay Doyle, bassist Rosanna Kressin, and drummer Brett Sanderson.
Speaking of cool new punk tapes, an Ottawa five-piece dubbed Magic Mommy surfaced last week with a three-song demo that lands with a similar intensity. If I'm parsing the roster right, it looks like the band features Sof Shu from DOXX on vocals, with Felix from Liquid Assets/Bug Bites/Torpor (and may more) sharing guitar duties with Fig Reilly. Élodie from Torpor plays bass for Magic Mommy with Steinman (Ataxia/Omerta/Alcohol Fueled/Ciggie & the Darts) on drums.
Rest assured that as a writer, I'm (privately) griping about the unreadable sea of bracketed references needed to contextualize these band members. Still, the verbosity notwithstanding, it's clear from the rosters of these Ottawa bands how community-driven their whole scene is. Everyone's in everything. That's awesome.
Magic Mommy worked in the studio with House of TARG co-founder Paul "Yogi" Granger recording and mixing. I'll spare you his list of associations, but it's just as long.
On the subject of Liquid Assets, the raucous Ottawa punk group is right on the cusp of releasing their new 7". Arriving via Hamilton's Schizophrenic Records, the set carries the lengthy (and somewhat self-explanatory) title of SNC Lava Lamp EP: The Return of The Liquid Assets of Ottawa. You can preview it now at the influential YouTube punk channel run by the enigmatic Anti. The whole sounds crazy, with every lyric pretty much gargled right in your face.
Amusingly, the band's offering purchasers of the three-track record an additional seven songs if you jump through a few hoops. In particular, you need to colour the black and white cover of the EP (with your artistic medium of choice) and send them the proof via email.
Liquid Assets will support the release with a pair of shows this week: a hometown gig at House of TARG on December 13 and a trip to Hamilton's Doors Pub on December 14. The latter's a whopping six-band bill (which has to be pretty damn close to the capacity of Doors in just players alone).
London, Ontario glam rock four-piece Dong Vegan returns this month with new music on the 3 Nines Compact Cassettes label. You can preview the three-song EP, titled You're Boring!, over at Bandcamp, with tapes on the way and available sometime this month.
Dong Vegan last released an EP titled The He-Jobs Sessions back in 2016. The band's current lineup is playing under the delightful glam aliases of Clam J.A.M, Bobo Chanel, Jacqui Vexx, and Lottie Ritz.
My pals in the Windsor punk outfit Psychic Void have a new video online featuring "Internet Human," one of the eight songs from their recently released Skeleton Paradise LP. Guitarist Matty Menard spoke to Exclaim about the Rob Maslanka-directed clip, which features the band as a masked gang who violently, and perhaps inefficiently, dismantle one of those infernal computers:
"'Internet Human' was the first offering from the new LP, Skeleton Paradise, and we had been entertaining ourselves with the idea of filming the video for a while. Lyrically, the song speaks for itself and we had fun during the shoot. It was hard not to project a certain amount of hostility towards the disposal of such a technological terrorist."
Skeleton Paradise arrived a few weeks ago through New York's Vanilla Box Records. It followed-up the psych-punk group's 2018 debut Terminal Vacation. Insert cagey foreshadowing about a secret Some Party tchotchke to-come here. Shh.
On the heels of the lead single "Luxe," Toronto electronica group Holy Fuck recently shared another new song from the upcoming Deleter LP, this one titled "Free Gloss." Like "Luxe" before it, this track also features a guest star: Nicholas Allbrook, one-time Tame Impala bassist and current frontperson of the Australian psych-rock group Pond ("Luxe" showcased vocals from Hot Chip's Alexis Taylor). In a statement Holy Fuck had this to say about the tune:
"Our music can be dark and pummeling at times, unrelenting even. 'Free Gloss' was designed as a way for us to shed some light, and bring some bliss and buoyancy to the table whilst still maintaining that ecstatic energy and intensity that we love. We started tinkering with the main riff and structure on this one as an idea to take the listener on a euphoric sonic journey and explore the push/pull, tension and release you can take people with on the dance floor.
We were trying to step out of the corner we've been painted into. Now we're more in the dance world than ever. And this is the kind of dance music we like. In many different ways' Free Gloss' reminds us all of some kind of 90s thing. When we wrote the main keyboard riff, immediately we thought of Much Music, our Canadian equivalent to MTV, specifically their live dance studio broadcast, Electric Circus or their compilation album Extenda-Dance Mix 93. The inadvertent soundtrack to our youth. Looking back on it now, these shows explored a clash of humanity with technology, or perhaps the humanity in technology; repetitive electronic music with unpredictable human movement, which feels in keeping with the way we write and perform our music."
Columbian-Canadian electronic art-pop artist Lido Pimienta returned last week with her first new music since 2016's Polaris Prize-winning La Papessa. "No Pude" is the artist's first single from her follow-up album Miss Colombia, and the first released through the Epitaph Records imprint ANTI- (not counting the La Papessa reissue, of course).
In a statement Pimienta commented on the tune:
"No pude means: I could not. In the context of the song it means something to the effect of, 'I am tired of trying.'
The words speak directly to the sense of dread and constant anxiety my home country gives me. 'No Pude' sums up the love/hate relationship I have with Colombia. I hold Colombia close to my heart and my soul, but that loves turns into rage and shame as fast as a match takes to burn."
The track arrived alongside a video directed by Fitto Segura with art direction from Orly Anan. You can check it out below. There's no release date confirmed for Miss Colombia just yet, but you should expect it in early 2020.
Quebec garage/psych label Mothland recently announced the signing of Montreal's UUBBUURRUU. With a solid reputation for repurposing classic rock and stoner metal vibes, the quintet will next release a self-titled full-length on the label on January 17.
UUBBUURRUU was formed in 2014 by singer/guitarist Joey Napoleon (El Napoleon) and drummer Maxime Hébert (Les Breastfeeders, Ponctuation, The High Dials). The duo built out the band with producer/guitarist Samuel Gemme (Elephant Stone, Anemone), guitarist Sean Cary-Barnard (Melted Faces, Light Bulb Alley, Palmetto), and bassist Vick Trigger (Les Marinellis, Blue Cheese, Jimmy Target & The Triggers). The group released the Swamp Ritual EP in 2017. Here's what Mothland had to say about the new record's sound:
"Choosing to drink from a different well, their new direction still employs elements of psychedelia, but renders a new sonic spectrum. Using assertive songwriting with Joey Napoleon locking onto his strong 70's American and British metal influences, and precise reel printing by producer Samuel Gemme (Chocolat, Corridor, Anemone), the band's follow up should provide fans of heavy riffs with plenty to chew on."
There's no preview of this one just yet, but make sure you check out Swamp Ritual if you missed it the first time around.
Speaking of the Taverne Tour, the Montreal psych/garage festival will return for its fifth year in early 2020, bringing over 75 bands to the city from January 30 through February 1.
The event will feature appearances from a sizable number of Some Party regulars like Atsuko Chiba, WHOOP-Szo, The Sadies, Daniel Romano, Pale Lips, Paul Jacobs, Petra Glynt, and Fuudge. US acts crossing the border include San Francisco's Deerhoof, Atlanta glam-punks Material Girls, and Detroit's Shadow Show. You can find the current lineup and tickets on the event's website.
Winnipeg glam rock trio The Sorels recently shared their new video for "She's In The Gang" via a premiere at Bust. The track's the A-side of their self-titled debut 7", which arrived a few months back as the first release on Reta Records (the label run by Jamie Rae of the Montreal's Pale Lips). Gwendolyn Trutnau directed the new video.
"She's In The Gang" is backed on that platter by "School Street Blues," both of which were recorded by Shawn Dealey at Private Ear Recording. Along with Reta release, a European pressing was also made available from Italy's Surfin' Ki Records.
"This was our first attempt at making our own video and we hope that the people who watch can find humour and joy in the mundane relatable things we see around us when we stop to take in the moment — like a man feeding Cheetos to seagulls on the banks of Lake Ontario, or late-night karaoke at the local legion"
Petrol Head is the grunge-influenced band's follow up to 2017's Clean Air EP. The group recorded at London, Ontario's Sugar Shack (WHOOP-Szo, Chastity) with mastering performed at Toronto's Lacquer Channel by Noah Mintz (Constantines, Broken Social Scene). Bad River features guitarist/vocalist Thomas Huhtala, bassist Scott Hempstead, and drummer Nathan Heuvingh.
Quebec City skatepunk group Our Darkest Days has joined the teeming ranks of Thousand Islands Records for the release of their new single "When Dust Settles." The track will be part of the band's next album sometime in 2020, a record that follows their 2016 Bird Attack release A Common Agony. Daniel X Vandal of Kreact put together a lyric video featuring the new track, which you can peep below.
Heavily inspired by speedy, technical 90s skate punk from bands like Strung Out and Ignite, Our Darkest Days has been active since 2012. The group's current lineup features vocalist Vince Fournier, guitarists Dan Greene and Seb Ladouceur, bassist Jam Gosselin, and drummer Guillaume Fortin.
The sadly defunct Edmonton power-pop act Brunch Club recently shared a full unreleased album titled Another Wasted Summer. It dates from 2017. The set features eight tracks from the trio, which featured bassist/vocalist Ellen Reade, guitarist/vocalist Patrick Earles, and drummer Owen Lukawesky. You can grab a copy over at Bandcamp.
Moon's Noel Macdonald spearheads Washing Machine's Smiths-indebted indie rock. This recording features him on vocals, guitar, and bass, playing along with guitarist Dylan Chew and drummer Tom Burke. The trio contributes "Top Aide" and "Anyone's Guess" to the split. Valerie plays more in the shoegaze end of the pool and is a project from guitarist/vocalist Palmer Jamieson (Beauts). Here he's backed by guitarist Kayla Stevens (Crossed Wires, Vulva Culture), guitarist Shawn McNally (Night Surf), bassist Caleb Schriver, and drummer Ryan Brown. Their contributions are titled "OC Hair" and "Gold Ribbon."
This material is among Washing Machine's first since their 2018 full-length Walk It Back. Valerie's following-up their April-released Thin Veil EP.
Let's try something new this week and collect a handful of notable recent podcast appearances from Some Party adjacent artists that you'll probably want to check out. Note that I'm avoiding any mention of my own sketchy podcasts here, which is probably best for everyone.
City Slang, hosted by Ottawa Explosion's Emmanuel Sayer and video director Travis Boisvenue, recently featured the Mint Records acts Woolworm and Necking. The Vancouver acts were interviewed in the capital while touring behind their respective recent full-lengths Awe and Cut Your Teeth. Check it out in episode #211.
Come For a Ride, hosted by Jesse Locke (Tough Age, Motorists) and Kritty Uranowski (Lavender Bruisers) has a pair of new episodes up. Episode #3 of the young show features Carlyn Bezic and Amanda Crist of the Toronto synthpop duo Ice Cream, speaking about their recent LP Fed Up. The show's fourth episode, their most recent, has a conversation with Toronto drag promoter Tago Mago.
Ice Cream also spoke to Vish Khanna's Guelph-based Kreative Kontrol, appearing on episode #510 of the venerable interview show. Other recent episodes have featured chats with Toronto house music collective LAL and a recording of Khanna's Long Night talk show. The latter took place before a live studio audience at a Long Winter event in November.