Nunavut synthpop! Scary Bear Soundtrack have fully arrived with their debut EP Ovayok Road. Way up in Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, Gloria Guns and Christine Aye have been quietly making some excellent bedroom synthpop, including one of our favourite songs of last year, “Manic Pixie Dream Girl.” Their sound has grown leaps and bounds, fuller, and more completely realized. It’s great to see another highlight from last year’s The Longest Night, the incredible “Fault Lines”, make the cut on this release. But every song on this record has its own special appeal, and there’s a lot range and diversity in sound throughout the EP. If we had to pick a favourite, it’s the remarkable “Victoria Island”, a super-hooky and propulsive synth-pop number with endless replay value. We couldn’t be more impressed.
Ovayoak Road is available now from Bandcamp. Don’t sleep on it!
Okay, we’re going to go ahead and call this the most glorious musical collaboration of the summer. Two long-time favourites of ours, London’s Quinn Read-Baxter and Gavin Noir have teamed up and the results are just spectacular. It’s been far too long since QRB’s “Don’t Go”, which was one of our favourite songs of last year. “Without You,” a much more downtempo and hypnotic jam, is nevertheless another incredible single, and was produced by none other than Ontario’s reigning bedroom Italo revivalist, Gavin Noir. Maybe we should start calling Gavin London’s Johnny Jewel?
We first learned about Toronto hip-hop duo Above Top Secret when they released the wonderfully dark “Ghost” back in March, but they haven’t been idle since. Two days ago they dropped “WTF?!”, a slightly off-kilter jam full of unusual samples and inventive rhythms. It’s tough to pick a favourite element of this beat! The strange flute-sounding thing? The occasional guitar stab? SunSun’s production may be endlessly interesting, but singer/MC Ayo Leilani is no slouch either though, her vocals effortlessly floating on top of the beat, embodying the essence of WTF.
Above Top Secret perform this Friday at Camp Wavelength on Toronto Island, co-presented by multimedia collective 88 Days of Fortune. Silent Shout’s ARP 2600 will be DJing in between bands, and there’s lots of other faves on the bill too, including Doldrums, Zoo Owl, and RAVETAPES.
Hey, a new tune from our favourite Winnipeg bedroom synthpop auteur, Dave Shaw aka Glass Random! Also known for making excellent music under the name Camp David, he’s about to release his fourth release, the Leave Everything EP. If the title track is any indication, we’re in for an emotional synthy journey that’s very much on a psychedelic tip. It reminds a bit of the best of old-school Miracle Fortress, maximalist synthpop with a sweet centre. Knowing Shaw’s track record, odds are this EP is going to be amazing. Can’t wait.
In the meantime, check out the extensive back catalogue on Soundcloud.
Word to the wise: The Marquis, the brainchild of Montreal’s Dillon Steele, is probably the best new post-punk act we’ve heard all year. We’re incredibly pleased to premiere the first single off his debut EP, which features drums and production by Silent Shout fave Charlie Twitch, and cello by Christophe Cinq. The song’s called “lil bb” but it’s not the hyper-referential internet pop jam one might expect with a title like that. Instead, it’s a classic-sounding post-punk track that oozes paranoia and dark pronouncements. And sure enough, the thundering drums and crisp production really remind of Charlie Twitch’s work as ¡FLIST!, which is the best because we want more things that sound like that.
The Marquis EP is out in October on Art Not Love Records and we have a powerful hunger to hear it. In the meantime we’ll satisfy our ear-cravings with repeated plays of “lil bb”.
L Con, aka Lisa Conway of Toronto’s Del Bel, has been making excellent music for a very very long time, but this brand new single takes us back to those Chrome and the Ice Queen days. “The Distance of the Moon” is a slow-burner full of longing, with the slightest tinge of Lynchian darkness. A wonderfully contemplative piece featuring an incredible horn outro, it’s a song one can spend a whole day inside.
“The Distance of the Moon” is available now on 7″ with an amazing minimal vocal piece, “Without Colours,” on the b-side. You can pick it up from Bandcamp. Both tracks are early versions of songs that will be on L Con’s next full-length Moon Milk, which we absolutely can’t wait to hear.
Toronto electro-shoegaze group Mune have a dark, mysterious sound to begin with, but this remix done by Brandon Gibson-DeGroote (aka one half of the most wonderful Most People) deconstructs “Fool My Senses” and takes it deeper into a darker, even more subterranean place. Pitch-shifted vocals reveal the slightly sinister character that may have always lain beneath the surface of Mune, but the overall effect of the remix isn’t evil exactly. More like bizarre space-age R&B.
Falling Through Remixed comes out August 28 on Culvert Music and features remixes from the likes of Beta Frontiers, Eytan Tobin, and Delta Will.
And we’re back! Silent Shout summer vacation is over, and we’ve got our work cut out for us, lots of great August music to catch up on! First up is the latest from Baby Cages, the collaboration Jeremy Costello (aka Special Costello) and Halloway Jones. “All U Want” is the first new single since the Toronto/Halifax duo’s 2014 LP Indelicate, and it’s a lovely downtempo dark pop track, with textured guitars, synths and layered vocals over a minimal drum machine loop. They’ve also released a video for the track, directed by Heather Rappard, who shot the incredible Bile Sister vid for “Haagen Baadz” back in January. Beginning with a motivational speech by a woman calling herself “The Future,” it’s a slightly-hypnotic montage of women engaging in various trust exercises, and suits the introspective song well.
“All U Want” is available on a pay-what-you-want basis from Baby Cages’ Bandcamp. Grab it!
1. West Nile – LOTTA PPL
2. Rolemodel – Teen Idol
3. Ladyfrnd – Geist
4. Stefana Fratila – Heartland
5. LA Timpa – UU UU Animal
6. U.S. Girls – Woman’s Work
7. VIRE – Swing Shift (Nash the Slash cover)
8. RAMZI – Princess of Cups
9. L’esprit – Nature
10. Ben Gunning – Massive Love
11. Dream Safari – Hotline
12. Camp David – Nova Heart (Spoons cover)
13. Sean Paul – Always Be True
14. Bataille Solaire – Hom dans la Ville
15. Gavin Noir – Someone Like You
PS we’re taking a couple of weeks off. See you in late August!
Halifax’s Grace Stratton might best be known as one of the members of Willie Stratton and the Boarding Party, but she also makes incredible experimental pop as a self-produced solo artist under the royal moniker Electric Princess. Today, we’re treated to the first single off her debut EP, and “Future is Now” is a mixture of guitar drum machines, and reverby swooshes that is very much our thing. Looking forward to hearing the EP! It’ll be relesed on cassette in August by the good people at the Cerealbowl Collective.