CMW Night 1: TWM Showcase at Rancho Relaxo + The Autumn Portrait

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Lordy Lordy – 9:00PM @ Rancho Relaxo

Toronto’s Lordy Lordy opened up the night and our Canadian Music Fest. Their music is like going back in time, especially with their set opener, “Carnivore Clocks.” Their guitar-focused rock pays homage to a 60s sound while firmly planted in the present day. Every time we see Lordy Lordy, they impress us more and more. Justin Myler (vocals, guitar) has this relaxed style yet there is clearly passion in his vocals that tie well with Justin Christie’s feverish guitar playing. But what continues to amaze me is how new to drums Bryan Ward is, yet his ability to play as though he’s a seasoned veteran, particularly as he played guitar and kept the beat on drums AT THE SAME TIME during “Get Loose.” On top of their skilful set and tight musicianship, their banter was laid back and amusing, almost letting everyone in on their inside jokes.

Lordy Lordy will be working on recording, so be on the look out for more from these guys!

CMF: Lordy Lordy @Rancho Relaxo, 03.09.2011 CMF: Lordy Lordy @Rancho Relaxo, 03.09.2011 CMF: Lordy Lordy @Rancho Relaxo, 03.09.2011 CMF: Lordy Lordy @Rancho Relaxo, 03.09.2011 CMF: Lordy Lordy @Rancho Relaxo, 03.09.2011 CMF: Lordy Lordy @Rancho Relaxo, 03.09.2011

Go For The Eyes – 10:00PM @ Rancho Relaxo

Calgary-based Go For The Eyes put on a very energetic performance. Their danceable tunes are drenched in keys, courtesy of vocalist Elise Roller, and really have the drums, courtesy of Nathan Raboud, driving their sound. There’s a hint of funk to their pop rock sound that gives them a unique sound, which can largely be attributed to the deep bass lines from Eric Svilpis. The charismatic Roller exchanges lead vocals with Jeff Turner (guitar), which allows for variety in their set. This band has all the right elements – charisma, energy, and danceability– that make for an enjoyable set, but perhaps what they were lacking was more audience interaction. A little more connecting would have taken this set to another level.

CMF: Go For The Eyes @Rancho Relaxo, 03.09.2011 CMF: Go For The Eyes @Rancho Relaxo, 03.09.2011 CMF: Go For The Eyes @Rancho Relaxo, 03.09.2011 CMF: Go For The Eyes @Rancho Relaxo, 03.09.2011

The Autumn Portrait – 11:00PM @ Neutral Lounge

The Autumn Portrait, based out of Vancouver, is a 3-piece made up of Freddie Mojallal (vocals, guitar), Sean Lavoy (drums), and Patrick Jacobson (bass). Their indie rock sound, is loud and full of energy, which is particularly impressive for a 3-piece. Mojallal’s vocals stand out, in particular, as it’s familiar but has this tinge of rawness that makes him able to connect with his audience.

On the downside, The Autumn Portrait’s set was plagued with sound problems, which not only delayed their set but made it hard for them to make smooth transitions. They poked fun at their sound problems, saying “So if you wanna hear the rest of our set, we have CDs for sale.” The band was resilient, though, as they still managed to play with smiles on their faces. And that speaks volumes.

Alcoholic Faith Mission – 12:00AM @ Rancho Relaxo

Denmark’s Alcoholic Faith Mission really blew me away. With Thorben Seierø Jensen and Kristine Permild at the forefront, this band is made up of Sune Sølund, Gustav Rasmussen, Anders Hjort, and Morten Hyldahl. This 6-piece’s sound is so dynamic, with layers of instrumentation (think trombone, accordion and glockenspiel), yet so unassuming. There’s this fire that you can feel burning even in their quietest moments. As one of the last songs of their set, “Sobriety Up and Left,” the crowd was hushed as Thorben introduced this song as about waking up spitting up blood. There’s such sincerity in their performance, with harmonies that really speak to the audience. Alcoholic Faith Mission certainly impressed the crowd, leaving the crowd wanting more.

If you missed one of their 3 performances at the Festival, I hope this band from Denmark is able to make another trip to Canada again soon because you certainly missed out.

Old Crowns – 1:00AM @ Rancho Relaxo

Ottawa’s Old Crowns closed out the night. Frontman Steve St. Pierre’s raspy, brooding vocals really define their “stoner country” sound. The band, with Joel Soucy on bass, Alex Seguin on drums, and brother Sam Seguin on guitar, came with some new songs to treat the audience. Sam’s solo work during “Shaky Hands” was particularly impressive, as he feels the music and knows how to make his guitar sing when the moment calls for it. Old Crowns ended off their set with “Sailor,” a favourite that usually brings people to sing along. Most of the crowd had left at this point, but that didn’t take away from how great of a set closer (and night closer) it was.

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Categories: Canadian Music Week 2011, Live Music


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