Sunday July 18, 2021

Nocturne Child

Some Party is a newsletter sharing the latest in independent Canadian rock'n'roll, curated 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.

Daniel Romano's Outfit: "Nocturne Child"

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Last week Daniel Romano issued the first single from The Outfit's upcoming studio full-length Cobra Poems, a hooky psych-pop number dubbed "Nocturne Child." The track arrived alongside a delightfully silly video that finds the gang stalking the mean streets of Welland, Ontario, with baseball bats at the ready. Never one to comment overtly on his work, Romano shared a fittingly absurdist poem in a press release, stating:

What is a secret, what is a dream?
What is the truth and the in-between?
Outfit is cryptic, Outfit is shifty,
Outfit is shrouded in mystery.
Bring us wisdom, private seeds
bring us paintings, bring us sight,
bring us fruits and jewelry
Bring us the children of the night.

Due September 10, Cobra Poems features ten new songs recorded in December 2020 at the band's recently constructed Rose City studio, Camera Varda. You've Changed Records is carrying the release.

Cobra Poems follows The Outfit's recent live record Fully Plugged In, an 11-song set captured in Atlanta in those last innocent days before the pandemic brought touring to a halt. Both albums feature Romano backed by the group's now-solidified lineup of vocalist Julianna Riolino, bassist Roddy Rosetti, guitarist Dave Nardi, and Danny's brother (and fellow Attack In Black alumni) drummer Ian Romano.

These latest records arrive following Danny's milestone run of 11 distinct albums released (mostly digitally) during the various 2020 lockdowns, with a 12th (Kissing The Foe) surfacing earlier this year.

The OBGMs: "To Death"

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Fresh off the announcement that The Ends made the Polaris Music Prize short list, Toronto punk trio The OBGMs issued a video for the record's final single. Guitarist/vocalist Densil McFarlane directed the clip showcasing "To Death" through his production company Burn Industry. You can see the tension-filled piece on YouTube now.

Speaking after the Polaris announcement, which saw The OBGMs nominated alongside acts like Zoon, The Weather Station, and Cadence Weapon, the band commented:

"Last little bit has been filled with blessings. We've been on a path fighting for recognition in this game for our community. We couldn't do this without you. If you want to help us, watch our videos, stream our music. We want you to know we appreciate each and everyone of you. Each of your comments, dms, @'s to your friends, shares, do not go unnoticed. Thank you for your support. Let's take over."

The Ends arrived last fall from the Black Box label. The OBGMs play as a trio on the 10-song record, with McFarlane backed by bassist Joseph Brosnan and drummer Colanthony Humphrey. They recorded with producer Dave Schiffman (PUP, The Bronx, Anti-Flag). An EP collecting remixes of the album-opening song "Outsah" also recently landed as The Outsah Tape, featuring contributions from Oxymorrons, femdot., and Clairmont The Second.

The Nailheads: Live To See Tomorrow

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Montreal punk group The Nailheads are back in action with their fourth full-length and first since 2016. Live To See Tomorrow arrived in early July through Toronto's Dental Records and Stand Productions. At their core, Nailheads operates as a three-piece of lead vocalist/bassist Ritchy Nails, guitarist Raffy Mars, and drummer Lucky. They're joined in the studio on this outing by guitarist The Black Cat, percussionist Jason Paige, and nearly a dozen others (adding horns, keys, and other accompaniments). Nails writes from the punk storyteller playbook, a street romantic in the tradition of Joe Strummer and Mike Ness. The band likewise incorporates a swath of traditional rock'n'roll, folk, and R&B influences across these nine songs.

Live To See Tomorrow finds Nails co-producing with engineer Peter Edwards. The band recorded at Indica Records' Studio Plateau in 2019. The new record follows the band's 2016 LP Too Cool for School.

Rick White: Where It's Fine

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Rick White's revealed the full details pf his new solo LP. Where It's Fine collects solo recordings tracked at the influential indie rocker's home studio since the start of the pandemic. You can preview the entire ten-song set (and check out its wild, Ditko-channeling cover art) at Bandcamp now. A limited vinyl run is available through Blue Fog Recordings.

The set follows White's 2019 "psych fairytale" record The Opening with Elyn Sof and his front-to-back cover of Sloan's Peppermint. White's label has shared several archival releases from his past bands throughout the pandemic - including vinyl reissues of Eric's Trip's debut EP Peter (expanded into an LP), and the Elevator/Elevator to Hell records Eerieconsiliation and August.

Where It's Fine is one of several new projects to arrive (or in the wings) from the ranks of the Moncton legends. Chris Thompson's had a busy spring, with a new single now available from the shoegazy Diamondtown and numerous EPs available from the Halifax garage trio Gemstones. Julie Doiron continues to incubate the results of pre-pandemic studio sessions with Dany Placard and the above-mentioned Romano brothers, material we're eager to hear sometime this year on her next LP.

Shadow Folk: "Contemplation"

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Halifax psych-pop group Shadow Folk returns after a long studio absence this summer with Holiest Of Days. You can preview "Contemplation" now, one of seven songs slated to appear on the album. Shadow Folk features the core trio of Justin McGrath, Jordan Murphy (both of Walrus), and Ian Bennett (of Roxy + The Underground Soul Sound). Bennett's singing lead on this track. The record features several other musicians from Walrus' orbit, including Keith Doiron, Keith McFadden, Bryson Chisholm, and Ryan MacKay, with Truro blues mainstay Garrett Mason appearing on lead guitar.

Speaking to The East, Bennett commented on the new single:

"'Contemplation' is about being undecided. It's about the things that get in our way of getting or being who or what we want—whatever that may be. The chorus is about putting aside the things that might be in your way and getting past your own ego. The swirling reverse vocals at the end are like all the voices we hear in our head so just listen to the guitar solo and you'll be fine."

Holiest Of Days is due on cassette through Atlanta's Human Sounds Records, with a new label, Mother Nature Records, launching in the coming weeks to handle the CD version. It's been some time since Shadow Folk's last record, a 2015 split with Keith Doiron's Sunny Beaches.

Brain Itch: Forced To Pay

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Windsor hardcore group Brain Itch returned last week with Forced To Pay, a new 5-song EP, and the caustic band's first new material since their pre-pandemic Total Punk Killer split with Detroit's Shroud. The group recorded at Kaiser Sound Productions in 2020, with the set now available on cassette and digitally at Bandcamp. Forced To Pay finds Brain Itch tossing bomb after grimy, raw-throated bomb in the early-80s UK tradition.

Brain Itch features lead vocals and guitar from Matty Menard of Psychic Void, Disco Assault and No Fix.

Part-Time Cool: Five Four Three Two One

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Innes Wilson's delightfully uncomplicated pop-punk alter-ego Part-Time Cool is back with a new EP. The four-song Five Four Three Two One follows May's similarly-styled Fell In Love at The Punk Show, presenting a playful-yet-political set of tunes born from COVID-boredom. You can find the set now at Bandcamp. Like the earlier EP, Wilson recorded these tracks at home, with Pillea's Micah Brown mixing and editing from Montreal.

Last summer, wearing his decidedly less hyperactive singer-songwriter hat, Wilson shared a seven-song set of isolation recordings titled Deference. Those tracks followed the solo EP The Heart That Holds This Up, a 2019 release through Out of Sound Records. Part-Time Cool's sound grew from Baloney Mulroney, an earlier punk outing Wilson quietly released in September of 2019.

Dusted: "Baseball"

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Brian Borcherdt's solo vehicle Dusted has a new single out from the fast-approaching LP III. The contemplative, vocal-driven "Baseball" arrived last week, with the Holy Fuck member commenting:

"Baseball is not a song about baseball. Though I do mention a 'baseball bat'. Sports and religion are two vital powers surrounding rural Nova Scotian childhood that I got to be totally ignorant of. I can thank supportive parents for that. The song I wrote is more about shitty parents. My wife and I were living apart. She was taking a cinematography course while I was living in rural New York. She needed music for an assignment so I wrote and recorded three songs for her that weekend. Two of the three were secretly for her, not just for her assignment. One was probably the most 'love-song-iest' love song I ever wrote- cuz that's what we do when we miss someone. And the other was a song about growing up amidst narcissists. Though I never explicitly told her that, I'm sure she understood the meaning. It's a song of sympathy, more accurately empathy. And therefore it is still a love song. It's also a song about being really blue cuz that's how I felt when I wrote it."

"Baseball" features Borcherdt's vocals supported by Robbie Grunwald on Wurlitzer, Brett Higgins on upright bass, Shaun Brodie on trumpet, and drums from Brad Kilpatrick. Jarvis Taveniere (Woods/Purple Mountains) mixed and played organ on the track.

The 12-song III arrives June 30 as the follow-up to Dusted's 2018 set, Blackout Summer. As part of the alt-electronica group Holy Fuck, Borcherdt released Deleter in January of 2020 through Last Gang.

Beach Body: "Almost Summer"

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Regina's self-described "post-death surf choir" Beach Body have their debut full-length in the wings. The 8-song Walking Holiday's due September 24 through We Are Busy Bodies. You can preview the set now through the fully-reclined slow jam "Almost Summer."

Beach Body plays these days as an expanded version of their original lineup, with keyboardist Jon Neher and guitarist Jesse Bryksa joining founding vocalist/guitarist Rory Copithorn, bassist Ian Patterson, and drummer Gaelan Malloy. The group wrote Walking Holiday in the spring of 2020 while searching for oceanside vibes in a northern Saskatchewan cabin. They recorded at Regina's SoulSound Studio (a former funeral home) the following summer. The new record follows Beach Body's 2019 single The Southside Coyote Boys and a pair of earlier EPs.

JONCRO: Richmond Station

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Mississauga rock trio JONCRO hit a milestone this week with the release of their first full-length, Richmond Station. Following a year stuck in isolation that found frontman Daniel G. Wilson exploring a wide range of genres, the group's settled into a style that's truly their own (one they've even given a name). Wilson commented:

"[Richmond Station is] the culmination of two years of writing and a recording. a fusion of Jamaican culture and mysticism with post hardcore that I call 'Burru Punk', it is a loose concept record showing a journey from pain to salvation (or inner peace if you prefer). Each song is inspired by some aspects of my personal history/family history, and Jamaican/caribbean/Latin American history."

The 8-song record features Daniel G. Wilson on guitar and vocals, drummer Matthew Mikuljan, and bassist Kieran Christie. Wilson recorded the band at his home studio, The Lions Den, with Austin Nops of The Effens mixing and mastering at Lootbag Studios. Several guests appear on the record, including Weatherboy's Isaiah Canario, Burner's Deshaun Molloy, and perhaps most strikingly, Daniel's mother Winnifred Wilson. She performs a dub poetry piece on the album's closing track.

No Idea Head: "Somewhere Else"

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Drew Thomson has a new single from his eclectic spoken word vehicle No Idea Head, delivering the songs "Somewhere Else" and "Slab City or Busy" from his Hamilton home studio. The songs are available now from Bandcamp, following up on the project's two prior EPs (the most recent in December of 2020 and the debut in May of that year). As with those earlier outings, these new tracks find Thomson flexing his skill as a distinctively biting wordsmith to craft strings of restless, observational poetry backed by samples and electronic instrumentation.

Thomson's punk outfit Single Mothers last released the full-length set Bubble in January. In his pop-rock guise, The Drew Thomson Foundation last released the Unplugged & Live Off The Floor collection in the summer of 2020.

Matt Post Band: Habitat

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The Oshawa-based Matt Post Band continues to churn out full-lengths at an impressive clip, last week releasing their third of the year. Habitat arrives with 11 new songs and two remixes, the latter courtesy of Toronto's Birdboy and Quebec's 3X//FANTASY. You can find the full set at Bandcamp now.

The project's industrial-tinged electronic compositions, replete with warped dance beats and hushed vocal takes, stand in stark contrast to the racket Post made as half of the Whitby noise-punk duo Deathsticks. Habitat arrives following June's Banned From The Dogpark and May's The Nest Was Destroyed In a Storm.

Deathsticks, Post's two-piece with drummer Laura Klinduch, last released the EP Soon the Troubles Will Be Over in 2019. Last summer Matt also shared a lo-fi punk EP, billed as The Gunge.

Golden Cinema: "Dead Ringer"

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This week PEI / Ontario pop-rock band Golden Cinema marks their first physical release with Reels (2016-2021), a singles collection bringing together nine of the band's previously digital-only tracks. The group marked the occasion with a video for "Dead Ringer" (one of the two 2021 additions to their catalogue, alongside "Little Sunscreen"). The track's built along a prominent bass line, bringing to mind low-end driven classics from Tom Tom Club. The accompanying clip features several Canadian music and media personalities reacting to the song, with members of TUNS, The Inbreds, Kiwi Jr., and The Smugglers among them.

Golden Cinema features former Two Hours Traffic members Andy MacDonald (vocals/bass) and Derek Ellis (drums), playing with guitarist Chris Robison (North Lakes) and keyboardist Dan Griffin (an early member of Arkells).

Faceplant: Girlfriend EP

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It's impossible to compare the new Girlfriend EP to Faceplant's preceding 20 Minute Faceplant, but that aggressive contrast is likely the point. The Charlottetown duo's set aside their brash, tongue-in-cheek punk stylings to craft a set of syrupy, clichéd love songs - material delivered so overwhelmingly without breaking character that therein lies the joke. You can find the six-song set at Bandcamp now, keeping in mind this is the same band that wrote "I Took a Shit in the Shower" two years ago.

Keegan Powell: "Hang at My House"

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Toronto's Keegan Powell has an infectious new single online titled "Hang at My House," the first preview of the Chastity member's upcoming solo LP. In a press release, the singer-songwriter calls the bright pop-rocker "an ode to keeping your cool under the most heated of circumstances." You can preview it now at Bandcamp.

Powell last appeared on Chastity's 2019 LP Home Made Satan. Over the past year he's shared a few new solo singles online, including "Rock N Roll Kind Of Night" and "There's A Mountain." He released the Headspun EP in the fall of 2019.

Calling All Captains: "Undone"

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Edmonton five-piece Calling All Captains recently shared "Undone," the technical post-hardcore group's second new single following their recent return to action, "Tailspin." In a press release, the band revealed that the track addresses a narcissist, "the person in your life that makes everything about them and takes no responsibility for their own actions."

Over the past year, the group's worked with Quinn Cyrankiewicz of Royal Tusk, their second outing with the producer after their 2019 EP Nothing Grows Here. These new singles arrive via New Damage in Canada and Equal Vision down south.

Calling All Captains features Luc Gauthier (vocals), Brad Bremner (guitar/vocals), Connor Dawkins (guitar/vocals), Nick Malychuk (bass), and Tim Wilson (drums).

Real Sickies: "Love is for Lovers"

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Real Sickies have a new video online showcasing the title track to their recent LP Love is for Lovers. The clip follows three couples in a speculative version of Canada where love is explcitly outlawed (it also features a small cameo from the mural celebrating SNFU's Mr. Chi Pig in Edmonton). In an earlier statement, vocalist Ben Disaster explained:

"I really wanted to address some homophobic comments left on some of our videos by a specific individual. So funny to troll people about that, who are very open-ended, so it was finally time to address that and the politics around love."

Love is for Lovers arrived earlier this month through Stomp Records. It's the group's first full-length since their pandemic-anchored 2020 LP Quarantined, featuring 14 new tracks with guest appearances from Dave Bacon (The Real McKenzies/SNFU) and dream pop singer Lucette. It followed the band's last proper studio effort, 2019's Out of Space.

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