PREMIERES

Video: James Irwin – Sahra

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We’ve been anticipating James Irwin‘s second album ever since we discovered the Montreal artist back in July. “Everything Passed Me By” and “Face Value” impressed us with their smooth, relaxed melodies and subtle electro hints, so it’s great to learn that there’s another excellent laid-back pop single to complete the trio.

Introducing “Sahra,” a beautifully produced break-up song, and the premiere of a video to match. It was directed by Hannah Fleet and features Irwin swaying as black and white projections of people wash over him. At one point, he plays a banana as an instrument, and you don’t want to miss that!

Speaking of things you don’t want to miss, Irwin has some upcoming shows that you should know about: in Montreal at Bar le Ritz PDB tomorrow (Thursday) and in Toronto at Wavelength‘s pop-up venue on Friday.

You can stream Unreal on Soundcloud.

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Video: Castle If – Sector 03 / The Surge

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We have been waiting with bated breath for some new Castle If since pretty much forever. Her collaborations with Cell Memory are what put her on our radar, and her debut krautrock EP from 2012 made us stick around. The long-form electro-prog seems rooted in many of the same influences as Silent Shout favourite Femminielli, and the talent is just as evident, but with the exception of many phenomenal live performances, we hadn’t heard a true statement from the project. Finally, we have two new songs that are worthy of the building anticipation that exceed all previous expectations.

Castle If was commissioned to make a performance video by The Mendel in Saskatoon for the art gallery’s 50th anniversary. Taking a few liberties, she collaborated with video artist Lisa Folkerson (who directed Ken Park’s phenomenal “He Says I’m an Island” video last year), and produced what she refers to as “more of a cable-access-style television performance than a music video.”

“Sector 03″—the title track of a forth-coming sci-fi concept record— features a snarling monster of a bass-line that creates the backdrop for vocoded tales of woe and sadness. Meanwhile, “The Surge” goes in different direction: a perfectly contained nugget of a pop-song that wouldn’t sound out of place on an alternate universe Ladytron record. Behind it all are Folkerson’s projections, which create the perfect space for Castle If to do her thing, and allows the immaculately produced songs to speak for themselves.

Sector 03 has officially become the most anticipated album here at our office, and while we know that good things come to those that wait, we need to hear this ASAP. In the meantime, those in Toronto can catch Castle If this Thursday at the Gladstone’s Come Up To My Room at a showcase curated by Ottawa’s Debaser and Weird Canada.

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Cocobeurre – Big Wild

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Montreal’s Cocobeurre has been wowing us with her psychedelic dream-pop for quite some time. Now, with her newest track, she continues in a more rock & roll trajectory with absolute aplomb.

The self-directed video, which features one of the most amazing capes that we have ever seen, has Coco prancing around the (presumably) Canadian wilderness in an inappropriate-for-the-elements outfit (including said amazing cape).

Seriously though, that cape. What a cape!

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