**WICKED LOCAL** Super Special Summer Segment

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BONJOURHI!!!!

The time has come at last, peeps. Over the next few months, I will be reviewing ~wicked local~ artists and concerts from Boston, MA and the surrounding area to give Montrealers (and the awesome people who follow this blog) a taste of the music scene down the coast. Keep your eyes and ears peeled for some pretty sweet reviews starting in the next few weeks.

Stay chill MTL (but not too chill, enjoy that warmer weather!!),

Juliana

CKUT TOTAL ECLIPSE OF THE CHARTS::: May 24, 2016

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Hi friends,

It was a gorgeous long weekend here in Montreal: the sun & warmth called for multiple park hangouts, garden-tending, and long meandering bike rides. Felt pretty nice. And I’m really looking forward to trekking out east in a couple of days for the Obey Convention… it’ll be good to get out of the city for a bit and enjoy some of these great early summer vibes by the ocean. Plus, we’re playing an all ages punk show in the Halifax public library – come by and say hello if you’re in town for the festival!

xo
joni

:::CHARTS:::
ckut top 30 – may 24, 2016

1. kaytranada – 99.9% – xl CC *
2. the range – potential – domino
3. aj cornell & tim darcy – too significant to ignore – nna tapes CC *
4. bombino – azel – partisan
5. anohni – hopelessness – secretly canadian Continue reading

Album Review: Hold/Still – Suuns

suunsOn their new album, Hold/Still, Suuns take darkness as their muse, filtering their post-punk creations through a dimly-lit room with industrial electronics and distorted rock grooves delivering heavy punches on the listener.  The whole album finds uniqueness in its ability to combine dense production tactics with unpredictable songwriting.  Certain moments value building tension as synthesizers crackle with distortion highlighting the driving beats.  Rather than sending the subdued tension into the territory of raging, guitar-heavy choruses, the band seeks contrast in their ability to create visceral atmospheres for their lead singer’s enlightening falsetto.  The band effortlessly combines guitar-based rock music with sounds of Montreal’s underground resulting in one of the most interesting contemporary releases of the first half of the year.

Continue reading

Concert Review: Chelsea Wolfe @ Fairmont

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The genre of Chelsea Wolfe is a bit hard to put down.  In 2015 she released Abyss, an album that epitomized her turn from a darkly tinged folk artist into a full-fledged member of the gothic rock community.  Although the music was dark and powerful, her slow tempos and vocal delivery still hearkened back to the days of her more folk-related stylings.  The title of this album serves as the best possible description of her music, Wolfe’s beautifully reverberated voice is the only source of light in her black sonic landscape forged by punching distortion and primal drumming.  On May 16th at the Fairmount Theatre in Montreal, Wolfe showcased the ability of her music to translate to the live setting.  The night was surreal.  Wolfe effortlessly combined her creepy, Halloween themed vocal whisperings with the smashing capabilities of her band, switching between unsettling intimacy and apocalyptic destruction constantly. Continue reading

Concert Review: Kaytranada @ Metropolis, May 19 2016

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Local electronic producer Kaytranada released his solo effort 99.9% early this month and it has been receiving widespread acclaim. On Thursday May 19th, the young artist showcased his richly detailed body of work in his home city of Montréal, QC. Outside the doors of Le Métropolis, there were even tons of people trying to buy tickets to the sold out show. The venue was packed shoulder to shoulder with eccentric fans who were vibing to the opening set with passion; it had me eager to see what the crowd would look like when the main act came on.

High Klassified and Louie P opened the show with their own lively sets that got the whole dance floor heated. The latest Skepta album, Konnichiwa, was sampled heavily throughout High Klassified’s set; in particular, robust versions of “Ladies Hit Squad” and “It Ain’t Safe” got everyone feeling those heavy grime instrumentals while the DJ threw a familiarized twist on them.

Both DJs played the platinum selling smash hit “Panda” by Desiigner that got everyone in a dabbing craze. Nothing but good vibes were floating through the auditorium as more and more people filled up the space.

Louie P opened up his set with “Father Stretch My Hands Pt. 1” from Kanye West’s latest offering, The Life of Pablo, which came out earlier this year. This only got the audience’s energy levels higher. The people were ready: next up was the act we’d all been getting hyped to see mix on stage: Kaytranada.

As Kaytranada walked towards his equipment, he looked comfortably at ease with his place on stage. The presence of the electronic musician made the whole venue reek of energy; just his entrance alone made me feel like it was going to be a wild night.

Appropriately named “Track Uno” off his debut album kicked off the set and had everyone vibing hard to his presence. The groovy bassline was perfect and established the setting for what everyone could expect to dance to in the following hours.

However, when Kaytra started playing “Glowed Up,” which features juicy vocals from Anderson .Paak, his equipment started to malfunction. The song would play for a few seconds before the sound would completely turn off. Typically in this kind of scenario any artist would most likely feel an immense amount of stress, especially for their debut album in the city they grew up in. But for Kaytranada it was no big deal as he took to the mic and said “Go ahead and boo me, I’m still here. I don’t give a fuck!”. This aroused the crowd even more and had everyone cheering his name in support. As Le Métroplis employees came onto the stage to fix his equipment, the young artist boasted his beat boxing skills for a couple of seconds before everything was managed to get fixed. Kaytra was able to play “Glowed Up” as originally planned and executed the song perfectly, as if the whole mishap with his equipment was all an act.

One thing I noticed at one point during the show was how many people had their phones out and filming. This stood out more particularly where I was standing as the whole crew of people that stood directly in front of me filmed almost half the show. It didn’t effect my enjoyment of the concert but it was extremely frustrating to witness. At one point I saw someone in the midst of the crowd take a phone call. What’s the point? How can you even hear what anyone is saying on the phone when you’re in such a packed venue with incredible music playing? I noticed this happening more while “Together” was being mixed. How anyone could ignore Alunageorge’s intoxicating singing on this track is unfathomable. Not only does Alunageorge deliver a solid performance on this track but Goldlink spits a wild flow overtop of the spacey instrumentals.   

During one of my favorite songs “Lite Spots,” a mini dance circle formed within the middle of the venue. One couple skillfully showed off their breakdancing techniques to the outside of the circle. They exhibited such an amazing chemistry together that was inspiring to watch. As spectators observed the couple in awe, the rest of the tightly packed audience was able to lose themselves in the midst of the song.

Whenever you hear news of Kaytranada coming to town, you should prioritize getting a ticket immediately — before they sell out. Leaving the venue I was able to quickly chat with someone who has been a fan of the producer ever since he gained traction back in 2012. I was told that of all three shows that he had seen Kaytranada perform, the one that he had just put on was without a doubt his most ridiculous. I took his word on it since I felt like I was leaving something that was truly monumental.

Review by Michael Eidelson.

 

CKUT TOTAL ECLIPSE OF THE CHARTS::: May 17, 2016

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Greetings radio,
Snowflakes were spotted yesterday in Montreal while biking into work. Keep yr fingers crossed for my freshly-planted outdoor seedlings…
xo
joni

:::WHAT’S UP AT CKUT:::
The legendary Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry stopped by CKUT for a surprise visit on Fridayand kicked it in the studio with our crew during the perennially-awesome Butcher T’sNoon Time Cuts, and we’re still kinda reeling from the experience. Dig that photo of him with Butcher T above — dude is quite the character! Of course, he fit right in with our wild posse here at the ol’ 90.3. Hit up the archives to download the full show or watch interview footage on the CKUT youtube channel.

:::CHARTS:::
ckut top 30 – may 17, 2016

1. kaytranada – 99.9% – xl CC *
2. anohni – hopelessness – secretly canadian
3. suuns – hold/still – secret city CC *
4. essaie pas – demain est une autre nuit – dfa CC *
5. v/a – space echo: the mystery behind the cosmic sound of cabo verde – analog africa Continue reading

Visage Musique: Montreal’s underground Synth alchemists A conversation with Dino Secondino

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Jean Francois displaying the white vinyl pressing of Golden Zebra’s 2014 debut LP

Montreal’s Visage Musique, have been a fixture in the city’s burgeoning synth underground since 2010. Six years on, the label sounds as vital as ever. Thanks to creative incubators such as Visage Musique, Montreal’s former title as the “Synth City” has decisively returned, with the successes and acclaim earned by local underground acts such as Essaie Pas, now too big to be ignored by Canada’s mainstream press. In anticipation of the label’s upcoming Brusque Twins release, the excellent new techno-infused EP “Trashbag” (released Apr. 22nd), I had the opportunity to sit down with Jean Francois Morin aka Dino Secondino: the elusive international playboy and unofficial spokesperson of the label. I spoke to Jean about the beginnings of the label, the importance of balancing aesthetic unity with musical innovation, and the challenges of running an independent label in Quebec.

DB: In hindsight, do you remember a formative moment that you became interested in ‘80s synth music?
JF:
“It all started with new wave, I was hit with it when I was 16. It was watching television at 4 in the morning and the video for the The Smiths’ “How soon is now?” came on. I was completely changed from that moment, I had no idea about ‘80s music. From there Siouxsie and the Banshees gave way to Pet Shop Boys, which gave way to more synth heavy music, and disco” Continue reading

CKUT TOTAL ECLIPSE OF THE CHARTS::: May 10, 2016

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Hey pals,

One of my projects got to open for the very awesome Hank Wood & the Hammerheads on the weekend and I’m still kinda reeling. Those dudes are so good live. See them if they play your town! I also said farewell to my cat-sitting charge Paprika because her owner returned from tour – but she’s so cute that I couldn’t resist including one last kitten photo in this week’s charts. Email exists primarily for sharing cute animal pics, right? Who cares about charts?

… I guess if you care about charts you can dig those below, too.

xo
joni

:::WHAT’S UP AT CKUT:::
We’re super thrilled & honoured to be voted #1 radio station in Montreal yet again by local arts publication Cult Montreal. Beloved CKUT programs Venus and Underground sounds also cracked the top 5 best radio show category. Check it out here! Thanks to everyone who supported us in this poll and year-round – we love you!

:::CHARTS:::
ckut top 30 – may 10, 2016

1. suuns – hold/still – secret city CC *
2. essaie pas – demain est une autre nuit – dfa CC *
3. anohni – hopelessness – secretly canadian
4. sarah neufeld – the ridge – paper bag CC *
5. fatima al qadiri – brute – hyperdub Continue reading

CKUT TOTAL ECLIPSE OF THE CHARTS::: May 3, 2016

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Hello friends,
I had a great weekend celebrating the fifth birthday of beloved local loftspace La Plante with a big ol party featuring lots of rad performances (including Grace Brooks & the Bad Dog, above), great food, dance party vibes, and a really cute dog. It felt kinda like I died and went to Montreal heaven.
xo
joni

:::WHAT’S UP AT CKUT:::
A new month is upon us and that means that we’re proud to introduce a new curator for CKUT’s experimental radio residency If You Got Ears. This time around, we’re excited to welcome sound artist Jeremy Young to host the show every Wednesday from 12-2pm. Here’s a sneak peek of what’s in store, straight from the horse’s mouth: “The purpose of this residency is to reimagine my role as a radio jockey as an active creative participant in the flow of music throughout the set. I will be “performing” my material alongside other artists’ music, integrating my own arsenal of reel-to-reel tape loops live to both intervene with as well as smoothly usher along the narrative of the set. We’re going to explore the dreamstate together, lots of repetition and lots of loops, and each set will wonderfully dictate its own sense of time and time space. What fun!” Not by a computer to stream it live? Don’t fret – we’ve got you covered.

:::CHARTS:::
ckut top 30 – may 3, 2016

1. tim hecker – love streams – paper bag CC
2. lantern – black highways and green garden roads – fixture records CC
3. v/a – fixture records 4 – fixture records CC *
4. konono no. 1 – konono no. 1 meets batida – crammed discs
5. nap eyes – thought rock fish scale – you’ve changed CC Continue reading

Jeremy Young Hosts If You Got Ears for May 2016

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For the month of May, Jeremy Young will be bringing us his work for If You Got Ears. Jeremy is a sonic artist, improviser and creative strategist based right here in Montreal. With a focus on the intersectionality between text and sound, he has explored the worlds of audio-literature through books and podcasts, as well as undertaken numerous artistic projects which you can read about on his site.

This month, he will be delivering each episode with a separate theme generated by the work of Gavin Bryars, Martha Reeves, Jason Molina and The Necks. His sounds will feature many loops and repetitions, taking the listeners on a dreamy and enlightening journey. It’s going to be a wild ride, so don’t miss it every Wednesday from 12-2pm~~