More music this week

Ra Ra Riot.
Delhi 2 Dublin.
John Butler Trio.


After receiving critical acclaim for their debut album, The Rhumb Line, Ra Ra Riot are looking to impress again with their sophomore offering The Orchard.

Formed in 2006 on the Syracuse University campus, this band jumped from playing house parties to playing CMJ’s Music Marathon in less than six months. called them “one of the best young bands we’ve heard in a long time,” and soon the industry people came knocking.

Though they were quick to break into the music scene, cellist Alexandra Lawn attributes their success to hard work and paying their musical dues on the road, winning fans over along the way with their unique blend of orchestral indie pop and energetic live shows.

“It’s really been gradual since the day we started,” Lawn said in a recent interview with Pique magazine. “Everything was kind of a pleasant surprise in terms of any measure of success. Our strong suit is that we truly do love playing with each other and that’s what it’s always been about.”

Ra Ra Riot are on their first Canadian tour in support of their new album, which takes its name from a peach orchard in upstate New York where the band convened to work on their latest.

“When we went to the peach orchard last summer to write The Orchard, that was an environment that was so conducive to our creativity,” explained Lawn.

You can see Ra Ra Riot opening for Wintersleep at the Garrick Centre on Saturday, Nov. 20. Tickets are $25. Visit

-Alex Krosney


Describing Delhi 2 Dublin can be a complicated task.

The five-piece band from Vancouver have been defying genres since March 2006, thanks to a one-off collaboration that went extremely well.

“It’s a mashup of Celtic, Punjabi, electronic and then all sorts of other stuff,” says Tarun Nayar, who handles tabla (Indian drums) and electronics for the band.

The band, which also includes Kytami LeBlanc (fiddle), Sanjay Seran (vox), Andrew Kim (electric sitar, guitar) and Ravi Binning (dhol – a double-sided barrel drum), released their first self-titled album in December 2007, followed by a remix of the album one year later.

Nayar says not a lot has changed in the band between their debut and the release of their latest album, Planet Electric, that was released in May of this year.

“In terms of the actual releases, I think what the second (album) did was capture what we do live a little bit better,” he said. “(We) put a lot more energy into trying to capture that feeling, and I think we’ve gotten a bit closer.”

D2D promise to bring jumping, sweating, stage diving and yelling to the sold out West End Cultural Centre on Monday, Nov. 22. When their tour ends next month, D2D will be exporting their music to such exotic locations as Las Vegas, Dubai and India.


-Robin Dudgeon


Little more than 10 years ago, John Butler was just another busker on the streets of Freemantle, Australia.

That was before he gradually became one of the biggest acts to come out of Australia in years.

“It’s all part of the journey, and I try not to wish I was anywhere other than where I am right now ... but yeah, those were simpler times,” Butler told the Daily Times, a Tennessee newspaper, in a recent interview. “My biggest goal then was to get a new trolley to carry my guitar and my amps on as I walked through the streets, so I could backpack through Australia and busk at the same time. Things have changed a little since then.”

A little: two platinum albums, U.S. tours with John Mayer, the Dave Matthews Band and stops at the Bonnaroo and South by Southwest music festivals.

And while he lends his namesake to the band, Butler’s trio has by no means been stable as his fame continues to rise.

“I can’t really explain it,” he said. “There comes a time within the trio’s lifespan where we either continue as we are, or I think it needs to move on. … The main thing for me to do is to find the right players to suit the music at the time.”

Catch the John Butler Trio on Wednesday, Nov. 24 at the Burton Cummings Theatre. Tickets are $27.50 in advance at Into the Music, Music Trader and Ticketmaster. Visit

-Matt Preprost

Published in Volume 65, Number 12 of The Uniter (November 18, 2010)

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