If you’ve been following along for the past few years, you know how much we’re fans of Violence, following their career since the release of their phenomenal debut EP in 2013. What we love about them since then, is that despite the fact the core electronic elements are left in tact, each new release sounds completely different from the one before.
Case in point is their latest single “Shaking Pictograms.” The song sounds similar to their past outings with the dark synthwave we’ve come to expect, but adds new elements that we never would have expected from the band. There’s a certain layer of funkiness behind the single, and we love that.
Following Violence continues to be a journey that we’re happy to join them on. And excitingly, the journey continues with the release of their new EP Le Théâtre, due out September 11 on Visage Musique, and a launch party at Casa in Montreal on September 25th.
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”.
Though incredibly catchy, Pat Jordache embraces the more eclectic side of synth-pop in his latest video single, through processed vocals and synths reminiscent of Boards of Canada. “O.M.O.” features local Montreal fixtures Adam Wilcox and Thom Gillies (the latter formerly of TOPS).
This Roxanne Lemieux-directed video explores the bleak Canadian winter as we all know it – catch the heat while you can! From the snow-covered steppes of rural Quebec to a frozen abandoned building, all become settings where we bear witness to Jordache’s eccentricities.
Our love of Bataille Solaire, the proggy electrolyte from Montreal, cannot be understated. As a frequent collaborator of Jef Barbara and Pascale Project (who directed this video), Asaël Richard-Robitaille has definitely honed his skills for electro-experimentation and with this song has created an almost easy-listening jam that would be played in the most awesome supermarket in the world.
“Hom dans la ville” is the first single from Dolby’s On, his latest EP out now on Mansions and Millions.
As y’all might know, we’re well into both Montreal experimental electronic pop trio Saxsyndrum as well as Toronto synthpop stars-in-waiting For Esmé. So, remember For Esmé’s smash from back in the winter? Well, Saxsyndrum have thoroughly deconstructed the catchy brilliance of “You” and reimagined the pop song as an expansive, psychedelic electronic jam somewhat in the vein of classic Caribou. It’s at times meticulously sparse, other times wonderfully dense, and an overall fascinating trip, definitely one of the best things we’ve yet heard from the Montreal experimenters.
The two bands play several shows together in the coming weeks, which you should catch if it’s an option for you, geographically: July 16 at Casa del Popolo in Montreal, and July 23 at the WayHome festival in Oro-Medonte. Saxsyndrum’s excellent SXD_EP from last year is still available from their Bandcamp, and For Esmé’s awesome singles are available from theirs.
Excellent news, everyone, RAMZi is back! The former Montreal, now Vancouver-based artist was once one the more prolific that we featured on the blog, but then recently her output went a bit dark. Well, there’s a perfectly good explanation: the move, but also the recording of her latest album Houti Kush out July 21 on 1080pCollection.
“Princess of Cups,” the first single from the album, sounds a lot like the RAMZi of before, but more streamlined. It’s weird, twitchy and awesome, with the track seemingly taking a page from the freakier moments of Radiohead’s back catalogue (the “Pulk/Pull Revolving Doors” “Gloaming” type songs). Glad to hear that she’s still as awesome as ever, and can’t wait to hear the album.
Vesuvio Solo‘s uber-catchy psychedelic stoner-pop anthem still makes us swoon after all this time. And now we’ve got some killer visuals to go along with it, with a new video directed and edited by the band themselves and Pat Gregoire. It makes sense that this band lives in a perpetual VHS haze, subtly rocking out in a bare green room.
Their most excellent album Favors is available now from Banko Gotiti and Atelier Ciseaux. Do yourself a favour.
Admittedly, and somewhat embarrassingly, Montreal’s Foxtrott just popped up on our radar by virtue of a show that she’s doing in Berlin with fellow Montrealer Antoine 93 in July. Well, now that we’re onboard, we’re never getting off. This kind of sleekly produced electro-pop is definitely in our wheelhouse, especially when we can make a comparison to perennial Silent Shout fave Mozart’s Sister. The similarities don’t end at the textures used, but they both carry a sense of otherworldliness and complete originality despite the professionalism of arrangements.
Not to mention the video, which is just super cool. I want to visit those purple hills and dance just like they’re doing here. Click “repeat” a few times on this one to prepare you for November 6th when Foxtrott releases A Taller Us, her debut record on One Little Indian.
Montreal’s Jean Sebastian Audet crafts terse avant pop spasms under the Un Blonde moniker. As we mentioned back in April, things are different this time around. Six-string freakouts that sounded like they were played on rusty wire are abandoned for experimental 4-track r&b bliss. The resulting group of songs, Water the Next Day, is closer to Audet’s most recent work in Zouk Fuck than anything under the Un Blonde. Unwavering, however, is Audet’s ubiquitous DIY approach. Regardless of style, the music is always projected through Audet’s singular lens.
The excellent “Look” finds Audet conjuring minimal r&bliss with a warbling synth and a chorus of vocal overdubs. Like many tracks on the record, it’d be gorgeous if it wasn’t so unsettling.
“True”’s stuttering drums and electric-piano figure sound like they mutated out of the Stones Throw back catalogue. If your séance needs a pick me up, look no further.
While occasionally pretty, Water the Next Day has plenty of delicious dissonance. See: “Glow in the Morning” for a slice of avant-garde future funk insanity. Audet’s idiosyncratic croon and harmony overdubs on “Something Else” recalls both the choral tendencies of experimental pop stalwarts Dirty Projectors and post-punk vets This Heat.
On Water the Next Day, Audet takes lofi experimentalism, r&b, pop and jazz and crafts something unique and transcendent. This is apparently the first in a series of three Un Blonde exploring different sides of Audet’s musical identity. We sure hope so.
Water the Next Day is fantastic and out now on Egg Paper Factory.
Last month, Montrealers Raphaëlle Chouinard, Gabriel Tremblay and Lisandre Bourdages quietly released a gem of an electro-pop EP called Leo. Collectively, they are known as Syzzors, and they are living on the edge, sonically speaking. CRi, who has been covered by us here at Silent Shout before, was co-producer on the project along with Simon Lévesque.
Leeches, the first single pulled off of the Leo EP, is a lively pop piece centered around a variation of a famous Neil Young lyric. I’ll let you figure out which one! Listen to it below, and then pick up the EP on their Bandcamp.