Reviews

DOMINIONATED THE THIRD
June 30th, 2016 | by Jim Di Gioia | published in Discs of the Week, FEATURES, Premieres | Comments Off on DOMINIONATED THE THIRD

DOMINIONATED THE THIRD
We’re pleased as punch to bring you DOMINIONATED the THIRD, part three in our ongoing series of “compendiums of classic Canadian songs covered by contemporary Canadian artists”. The concept is simple: we ask a bunch of artists to choose a favourite Canadian tune and give us their interpretation of it. The execution is mind-boggling. I can’t thank […]

WHOOP-SZO >> “Bmaadiziwin”
June 28th, 2016 | by Jim Di Gioia | published in New Favourite Songs | Comments Off on WHOOP-SZO >> “Bmaadiziwin”

WHOOP-SZO >> “Bmaadiziwin”
There are as many definitions of a ‘good life’ as there are lives in the world. Self-proclaimed “sludge-folk wonders” WHOOP-Szo have put their own idea of living a healthy, spiritual life to tape with “Bmaadiziwin” (an Ojibwa word representing a spiritual way of life), a new cassette single that finds their ever-evolving sound rolling across […]

KAYTRANADA >> 99.9%
June 27th, 2016 | by Jim Di Gioia | published in Discs of the Week | Comments Off on KAYTRANADA >> 99.9%

KAYTRANADA >> 99.9%
If ever there were evidence of ‘the new normal’, Montreal based producer and DJ Kaytranada (Louis Kevin Celestin to his friends) is the shit. Count him among a small handful that instinctively knew how to harness the possibilities of SoundCloud, posting remixes and original beats up and courting attention of some heavy hitters who tapped him for production work and collaborations.

TANIKA CHARLES >> Soul Run
June 20th, 2016 | by Jim Di Gioia | published in Discs of the Week | Comments Off on TANIKA CHARLES >> Soul Run

TANIKA CHARLES >> Soul Run
While you could say Tanika Charles’ Soul Run was born out of a relationship break-up, her personal journey leading up to her debut album would more accurately be called a life shake-up. No matter how you categorize it, Soul Run bounces back from heartache and the blues with infinite resiliency and a determined spirit.

PREOCCUPATIONS >> “Anxiety”
June 14th, 2016 | by Jim Di Gioia | published in New Favourite Songs | Comments Off on PREOCCUPATIONS >> “Anxiety”

PREOCCUPATIONS >> “Anxiety”
PHOTO: Alessio Boni Preoccupations by Preoccupations I get it. Preoccupations’ previous name sucked, in a pretty big way. It made people angry, made them call for action, and demanded some kind of recognition of wrong. I can also get how fraught the prospect of starting over can be, and how destructive that process can be on […]

THE BURNING HELL >> Public Library
June 13th, 2016 | by Jim Di Gioia | published in Discs of the Week | Comments Off on THE BURNING HELL >> Public Library

THE BURNING HELL >> Public Library
If you’re never sure whether to laugh, cry, snicker or marvel at Public Library, then The Burning Hell has done its job. “When you’ve got reality, who needs to make up stories?” Kom asks on closer “Nonfiction”, never telegraphing to the listener whether he believes his own line. It’s no matter though; the humour of these“distorted story-songs” balances the heartache of human nature, mixing an ounce of honesty with a fraction of fiction. Public Library a priceless treasure you’d happily hold on to forever. Fuck late return fees; The Burning Hell, I love you.

PUP >> The Dream Is Over
June 2nd, 2016 | by Mac Cameron | published in Album Reviews | Comments Off on PUP >> The Dream Is Over

PUP >> The Dream Is Over
There are very few instances where I’ve been blown away by a band live while having little-to-no expectation going into a gig. This story is about one of those memorable times. I’d known of Topanga and found their early releases catchy, and I also knew the band had recently changed their name to PUP – but that was about it. Immediately […]

THE BURNING HELL >> “Pop Goes the World”
June 1st, 2016 | by Jim Di Gioia | published in Singles | Comments Off on THE BURNING HELL >> “Pop Goes the World”

THE BURNING HELL >> “Pop Goes the World”
The Burning Hell had me at “Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls”. If you know nothing else about me from this blog, then you must certainly know that I’m a sucker for cover songs, especially iconic 80s pop anthems like Men Without Hats’ 1987 ear candy hit “Pop Goes the World”. “Pop Goes the World” is […]

BY DIVINE RIGHT >> Speak & Spell U.S.
May 31st, 2016 | by Jim Di Gioia | published in Album Reviews | Comments Off on BY DIVINE RIGHT >> Speak & Spell U.S.

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Vince Clarke punctuates songs with infectious and unforgettable melodies about as often as he does their titles with exclamation points. Arguably his best collection of examples of both is Speak & Spell, Depeche Mode’s debut album, and the only one Clarke had a hand in creating. He wrote nine of its 11 songs (“Big Muff” […]

FREDERICK SQUIRE >> Spooky Action at a Distance
May 30th, 2016 | by Jim Di Gioia | published in Discs of the Week | Comments Off on FREDERICK SQUIRE >> Spooky Action at a Distance

FREDERICK SQUIRE >> Spooky Action at a Distance
Physics was never my strong suit in secondary school. Mind you, secondary school in general wasn’t exactly a walk in the park for me either, but suffice to say my focus in those formative years was on the arts more than science. No surprise then, that I didn’t recognize the Einstein reference in the title Spooky Action at a Distance, but what I most certainly did identify with on Frederick Squire’s new album is that distance, whether measured in time or space, is humanity’s best tool for putting life–both the past and present– in perspective.