The 10 deliciously lo-fi songs that make up Halifax duo Cousins' new LP are so infectious that you'll be singing along to them on the first listen, especially "Alone".
The second in a series of EPs from 23-year-old Edmonton singer/songwriter Eamon McGrath finds his Tom Waits-growl in full form on guitar-heavy opener "Canadian Shield".
Not opening with Radiohead's "High and Dry", the second record from Ontario singer/songwriter Melissa Payne is filled with nine bubbly and pining country popsters in the vein of Blue Rodeo, Amy Millan or Whitehorse - lots of reverb-soaked twang and pedal steel, decorated with oohs and aahs. She also ventures into southern-fried baroque pop balladry ("Call Me a Fool") and her raspy warble is welcome on each and every track, no matter the style (the girl can do diversity).
The Constantines are back together(ish), but that isn't stopping frontman Bry Webb from releasing his second solo LP. These 12 tracks of early Wilco-meets-working man alt-folk are occasionally drenched in distortion ("AM Blues", "Free Will", bonus cut "Receive Me") but mostly exist to showcase Webb's haunting yet playful baritone over sparse, meandering arrangements.
Colour By Numbers debut five-song EP is anything but by the numbers. Harmony is the Winnipeg trio's strong suit; CBN has a gift for making harmony the focal point of every song, regardless of style or genre, tying this eclectic rootsy indie pop EP together.
A while back, Kingston duo PS I Love You unveiled a new single, the title track from the forthcoming For Those Who Stay.
This dreamy little nine song offering from Lantzville, BC gets a hipster-ized re-release on Brendan Canning's new Draper Street label and it fits with the Broken Social Scenester's aesthetic.
It's fitting that each song on this record would fit nicely next to Greg Macpherson's "Remote Control" (or any of the singer/songwriter's mellower material) as this Winnipeg trio's debut full length comes out on his Disintegration Records label.
This new EP from one of Winnipeg's youngest folk vets, Raine Hamilton (Claire Morrison, Red Moon Road), serves up a healthy meal in just three tracks.
Ex-Women members Matt Flegel and Michael Wallace team up with Calgary compadres Scott Munro (Lab Coast) and Danny Christiansen (Sharp Ends) to deliver another lo-fi masterpiece in the form of a seven song cassette EP.
There's a lot of diversity in Hearing Trees' simplicity - you could easily slot the local quartet's sounds onto rock radio, into a dark club, onto your favourite indie blog, or in the background of the scene where the teen lovers kiss from the first time - but it's focused.
Produced by Grammy-winner Adam Kasper (Nirvana, Queens of the Stone Age), the debut LP from Calgary trio Secret Broadcast follows up 2012’s Hungry Ghost EP, and is consistent in delivering riff-and-radio-ready-rock that has just enough dirt on the vocals to trick the indie kids into liking ‘em, while delivering the “hits”.
These guys just creep up on you, like Nick Cave’s little brothers (kinda moody, but quite harmless). Opening with “Beat the Drum Slowly”, a methodical dirge that surges and cuts, the listener is treated to nine other tracks of similar depth and attitude.
It doesn’t have an immediately hooky opener (there’s no “Willow Tree” or “Clinically Dead”) but the warbly meander of “Cut Off My Hands” is warm and welcoming just the same.
This intimate little EP is the second in under a year from local boy Micah Visser.
This one’s tough. We love Drew’s will-they-won’t-they Broken Social Scene project, but the man who is just as likely to jam with J. Mascis as he is to have tea with Feist’s mom is a bit of a mouthpiece.
It’s hard to keep up with local chillwave producer Gabriel Akinrinmade - he’s released more EPs and singles than anyone I can think of, in addition to remixing, blogging and doing a radio show on UMFM.
This three song follow up to 2012’s four song EP finds local punk quintet Distances delivering a slew of hard-hitting, well produced punk radio classics.
Opening with a wordy, mid-tempo tune about Alberta, this concept record made by Livingston (which is kind of a collaboration between many people, mostly folklorist/song collector Dr. Henry Adam Svec and Czech programmer Mirek Plihal, but is also a machine that can access all of Canadian folk music to make the perfect CanFolk recording) is pretty okay.
This debut release from Newfoundland born Halifax resident Kim Harris is lush, pretty, hip and strikingly diverse.