Since our earliest encounters with Toronto mystery band TIO, we’ve been longing to hear a release, and that day has finally arrived! Their debut EP is coming out this Friday and we are very stoked indeed. Their carefully constructed, and decidedly dark, electronic pop feels so intelligent and unpredictable in a genre marked by simplicity and repetition. (Which are still also things we love!) But there’s something unique about how effortlessly they deliver their music that keep things from getting too brainy.
Following brilliant early singles “Day Fort” and “A Simple Way”, the band displayed a more chilled-out side on “Through the Heavy Clouds”. And today we’re excited to premiere the video for their latest single “Seeing It Go,” a song that’s so perfectly submerged and subtle, and even more subdued than anything we’ve yet heard from them. Love that lush chorus. So warm and dreamy!
The video, directed by Karl Skene, follows the animated adventures of three squares, RGB, as they journey across beams of light. It’s a psychedelic, hypnotic piece, that works extremely well with the minimalism of the song’s percussion and its gentle synth washes. Visuals to lose oneself in, for sure.
TIO’s EP (in true minimalist form, simply titled EP) is out October 9 and we’re so close to being able to hear it!
Silent Shout readers who have been paying attention this summer already know by now our serious affection for Ben Gunning latest electro turn. One might even call it a Massive Love. The latest single, “Mutilator”, is just as strong as the first two, but demonstrates what Ben can do in a downtempo vein. That said, despite it being a pretty laid-back crooner of a tune, “Mutilator” goes into some heavy distorted territory, demonstrating that he’s not afraid to take his elaborately crafted pop sound into slightly more experimental realms.
Rumour has it that all three singles will be on an album coming out this fall, and if so, it’s a safe prediction to say it will be amazing. CAN’T. WAIT.
Triple Gangers have been part of the Toronto electronic music fabric for such a long time, it’s been hard to remember that they hadn’t yet released an album. Our eyes were opened wide when they put out “Molly,” the incredibly dancefloorworthy first single, two years ago. Since then, it’s been a long hard wait, but we had a trickle of singles to keep us on our toes. Melancholy groover “Coffee and Cream” and sleek R&B synthpop jam “Beresford Boys” made us realize that we were going to be in for something special. And let’s not forget that amazing video for the latter!
Back at the beginning of the summer, Ghislain, Aurora, and Ida (who also plays in the incredible Hush Pup) put out Forecast, a full-length album which included all three of those tracks, with six other endlessly replayable works of wonderful unabashed pop. But despite the constant catchiness, there’s serious songwriting and arrangement chops on clear display. Triple Gangers know how to write interesting and complex pop tunes without getting in the way of hooky melodies or having fun. This record hasn’t left our tapedeck since its June release. Don’t sleep on this one!
You can buy Forecast directly from them on Bandcamp. And if you’re in Toronto, catch them tonight at the Smiling Buddha with Silent Shout faves Zords and TV Sets.
Here’s a cool thing: Toronto’s Shea Bishop Duffy (aka DirtyOrgans) just released his first new song in two years, and it’s a stunner. “Espionage” is an extremely minimal bluesy post-punk single, with very spare drums, featuring David Switchenko of Saxsyndrum contributing some very crucial sax. It’s a tightly-controlled, very tense track that in places, sounds like the most paranoid electrofunk song we’ve ever heard.
“Espionage” is the first single from DirtyOrgans’ new album, a collaboration with blog fave Charlie Twitch on a new album. It’ll come out on Art Not Love Records, hopefully sooner rather than later!
Okay, it’s already been established that Tasseomancy‘s Palm Wine Revisited is one of the best things you’ll hear all year. Yesterday, the Toronto duo (and sometime members of Austra) released a new video for one of the highlights of their second album, early single “Braid. Wind is Coming”, which hasn’t lost any of its power since we first heard it back in 2013. The video, directed by Blake Blakely, was shot on Super 8, making for a remarkably warm and beautiful production, with the occasional animated lines added. The combination of real film, psychedelic colouring, and trippy lines is so right for this track. One of the best videos of the year!
Catch Tasseomancy on tour in North America this fall, supporting Braids. Don’t miss them!
Brendan Philip‘s been on a tear this year. The eclectic Toronto electro-R&B artist put out a masterful debut EP on Dine Alone Records this past May that seems to have gotten the singer/producer plenty of deserved attention. This week, he dropped “Ghostface”, the first single since that EP, and it sounds like a slight change in direction, but not uncharacteristic of his moody experimental R&B leanings. A smooth vocal melody over a repeatedly stuttering, almost unsettling, synth-based beat, it’s a bit chaotic but it’s anchored by a simple drumbeat and a laid-back organ. Really cool combination of sounds here, as usual!
Word is that “Ghostface” is from a forthcoming EP, Cul+ure Power Vol. 0, something we obviously can’t wait to hear. Until then, grab that self-titled EP from Dine Alone.
Seems like every band we’ve been posting this week is working with a darker sound palette, which maybe makes sense as the cold months approach. Brave Shores, Tops, TIO, and now Toronto breakout electropop act For Esmé. The band that made their mark with pop anthem “You” and foreboding dancefloor brooder “Just Yet” gives us a ballad that’s a worthy counterpart to their pop hits. “Make a Sound” is an introspective, carefully orchestrated song that’s reminiscent of a more chilled-out Young Galaxy. For Esmé continue to astonish. Can’t wait for the next one.
TIO‘s been thoroughly impressing all 2015-long with a string of great singles, including the propulsive “Day Fort”, and the minimal coldwave of “A Simple Way”. The Toronto mystery band (their identities are as yet unknown) is back again with another very cool dark pop track, with an accompanying video shot by Chris de Rosa. The track’s a bit more chilled-out than their usual, but this band’s got a lot of strengths, clearly, and it works just as well.
We can’t get enough of this shadowy TIO project, really. More please, mystery band!
I read that people who are chronically late owe their habitual tardiness to optimism. As one of these “types” myself, I can regretfully confirm this horrid behaviour – so here is my optimistically late review for Joanne Pollock’s gorgeous new EP Optimist which dropped digitally on Bandcamp earlier this summer.
Hailing from Toronto, but spending a lot of time in Winnipeg these days, Joanne is also one half of the dreamy-experimental pop-synth duo Poemss with Aaron Funk (aka Venetian Snares). With Optimist you can definitely hear a growth in her skills as a producer, which has allowed her to fully-realize the complex scope of her restrained yet massively elaborate and unexpected sound.
This six-track boasts some surprisingly intricate analogue drum programming and deep shimmering waves of vintage synths that appear and are washed away by ripples of new tones, only to emerge again. Joanne’s misty voice commands this legion of electronics through clouds of airy reverb and echo. From start to finish, Optimist is startlingly fresh, beautiful and extremely captivating to the ears. It’s difficult to listen to this EP without getting completely lost in the music and drifting away to sparkly synth daydreams.
If you’re in Toronto, you can catch Joanne on September 17 at Dundas Video and October 4 at Burdock Music Hall. She will have CDs for sale at her shows or you can grab her EP via Bandcamp.
Here’s a deeply grooving track from brand-new Toronto duo Earth Rides Along, composed of brothers Colby and Stefan Slade. For a first single, the production sounds expert, with a hugely deep bass rocking alongside some pitch-perfect harmonies. We’re extremely interested to see what these two will do next! Based on this debut, we’d predict big things.