Anne-F Jacques & Tim Olive. Tooth Car. Creating music that’s like the soundtrack for a building-site documentary, sound artists Anne-F Jacques of Montreal and Kobe-based Canadian ex-pat Tim Olive use magnetic pickups and amplified rotating surfaces to generate industrial-style improvisations. It’s ironic that the work[...] Read more

Recordings Ken Waxman

Avec le soleil sortant de sa bouche. Pas Pire Pop, I Love You So Much. “Theme and variations” isn’t exactly rock ‘n’ roll’s modus operandi, unless you count the retrograde lyrical motif of “cars, girls, repeat.” But thanks to this modern-day Montreal quartet, it’s no longer the exclusive domain of Mozart and[...] Read more

Recordings Jonathan Bunce

Tanya Tagaq. Retribution. To follow her Polaris Music Prize-winning album Animism, Tanya Tagaq has gathered her considerable resources—her talented backing band of producer and violinist Jesse Zubot and drummer Jean Martin, plus her astounding vocal skills, musical inventiveness, electric energy, and powerful,[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie

Unsound Toronto. Part of Luminato Festival. For over thirty years, the Richard L. Hearn Generating Station was something of an urban myth in Toronto. A massive, decommissioned power plant, shuttered in 1983, it sat there at the edge of the city’s consciousness on the industrial Port Lands, loved only by urban explorers of[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Jonathan Bunce Issue 126

Sound Symposium XVIII. Audiences at Sound Symposium XVIII in St. John’s, Newfoundland were treated to a full spectrum of improvisation, including free improvisation, graphic scores, and directed improvisation. We heard a vast range of music for electroacoustic soundscapes, Javanese gamelan, contemporary art[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Clinton Ackerman Issue 126

Benedict Schlepper-Connolly. The Weathered Stone. At a time when rhythmic repetition in chamber music is so often co-morbid with cloyingly banal indie-isms, The Weathered Stone, from Irish composer Benedict Schlepper-Connolly, offers a rather bright glimmer of hope.   From the outset, with its first and titular track (a[...] Read more

Recordings Nick Storring Issue 126

James O’Callaghan. Espaces tautologiques. Montreal-based James O'Callaghan confirms his position as a world-class composer with the release of Espaces tautologiques, his first album on the Empreintes Digitales label. Composed between 2011 and 2015, the four acousmatic pieces on this fifty-minute recording are further proof of O[...] Read more

Recordings Pierre-Luc Senécal Issue 126

Jason Sharp. A Boat Upon Its Blood. Baritone and bass saxophonist Jason Sharp is a long-time collaborator with poet Kaie Kellough and has been involved in the Montreal music scene for several years as a member of large ensembles (Sam Shalabi’s Land of Kush, and Nicolas Caloia’s Ratchet Orchestra), playing with[...] Read more

Recordings Daniel Glassman Issue 126

Amy Brandon. Scavenger. Truro-based guitarist and composer Amy Brandon is a quietly singular figure whose musical language hovers softly between numerous familiar styles—notably outside jazz, fingerstyle, and modern composition. Scavenger, her debut recording, isn’t especially conspicuous, yet it’[...] Read more

Recordings Nick Storring Issue 126

Electric Eclectics 2016. THE FIRST THING YOU NOTICE AT ELECTRIC ECLECTICS IS THAT YOU'RE NEVER REALLY BALANCED. The three-day midsummer festival of weird music and art takes place at Gordon Monahan and Laura Kikauka’s Funny Farm in Meaford, Ontario, which has hardly any level ground. The ground in front of[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Daniel Glassman

Suoni per il Popolo Festival: 16th Edition. Experiencing James Tenney’s In a Large Open Space during Suoni per il Popolo conjured parallels between the performance (held as part of a retrospective of the composer’s work, organized by Quatuor Bozzini) and the festival as a whole. The music reverberated through the high-[...] Read more

Concerts and Events Lawrence Joseph

Various Artists. Kudatah—Vol. 1 Electronic dance music has always been notorious for its overly rarefied stylistic niches. Within the past few years, the cartoonish overabundance of incomprehensible genre designations has folded in on itself, producing a vast polymorphous body of peculiar and self-aware work. Record labels[...] Read more

Recordings Nick Storring