Mary Dickie

Pantayo. Ang Pagdaloy Originating centuries ago in the southern Philippines, kulintang music is played on a set of brass gongs strung on a cord, sitting on a wooden resonator and hit by wooden mallets. Each gong has its own tuning and timbre, and players usually improvise over set rhythms with additional gongs[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie Issue 146

Adriana Barton. Wired for Music: A Search for Health and Joy Through the Science of Sound. What happens to a person who spent their entire childhood and youth practising to be a professional musician and can no longer play? Adriana Barton, who took up the cello when she was five years old and had dreams of being a concert soloist, was forced to give it up when she developed soft[...] Read more

Books Mary Dickie Issue 144

Esmerine. Everything Was Forever Until It Was No More. Esmerine is a group of Montreal multi-instrumentalists with sonic and historical ties to peers like Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Set Fire to Flames, and Thee Silver Mt. Zion, and with a virtual universe of sounds in their arsenal. On their seventh album, core members Rebecca Foon, Bruce[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie Issue 143

Kee Avil. Crease. The sounds on Kee Avil’s debut full-length album Crease seem surrounded by acres of space; it’s as if the instruments are played in a subterranean cavern where you encounter each one separately before they join together into a loose ensemble of voice, guitar, percussion, and[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie Issue 142

Tanya Tagaq. Tongues. Anger is an energy, and it’s always been the fire that feeds Tanya Tagaq’s music. Even when she wordlessly roars or coos, shrieks, or wails, it’s impossible not to feel her incendiary rage vibrating in your gut and through you, along with all the pain and joy, fear, and love[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie

Mas Aya. Máscaras. Mas Aya’s (Brandon Valdivia) bewitching Máscaras is a melding of disparate elements that add up to more than the sum of their parts. It’s the latest recording from this Nicaraguan-Canadian multi-instrumentalist who has produced or performed with Sandro Perri, U.S. Girls,[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie Issue 141

Robin Hatch. T.O.N.T.O. When Toronto keyboardist and composer Robin Hatch became an artist in residence at the National Music Centre in Calgary, she was given rare access to a wondrous resource in the centre’s collection of antique instruments: The Original New Timbral Orchestra (TONTO), a mammoth machine that[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie Issue 141

Leanne Betasamosake Simpson. Theory of Ice. Leanne Betasamosake Simpson is a prodigiously talented Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg singer-songwriter, teacher, and author who explores decolonization and Indigenous resurgence in her fiction and nonfiction books, poetry, and music. For her fourth album, Theory of Ice, Simpson reworked some of her[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie Issue 139

Meredith Bates. If Not Now. Vancouver violinist Meredith Bates has a long history of performing and improvising with other like-minded musicians. Founder and leader of the improvisational sextet Like the Mind and of the multimedia collaboration Sound Migrations, she has also recorded and performed with Peggy Lee, Leah[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie Issue 139

Pantayo. Pantayo. Pantayo is five Toronto-based women who bring ancient Philippine kulintang music and modern Western pop styles together in a fascinating, startling, and exciting new hybrid.   The band members—Eirene Cloma, Michelle Cruz, Joanna Delos Reyes, and sisters Kat and Katrina[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie

Plumes. Oh Orwell. Veronica Charnley and Geof Holbrook have often walked a tightrope between pop and classical music in their work, incorporating classical elements into their indie pop or vice versa. But sometimes they prefer to keep the two streams separate, which is probably why the couple has sometimes[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie Issue 135

Flying Hórses. Reverie. Redolent of icy streams, brittle emotions, and breathtaking, lonely landscapes, Reverie might be the perfect album for a long, cold winter. This is the second full-length release from Montreal pianist Jade Bergeron, and it’s not surprising to hear that she once lived and worked in[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie Issue 133