Torontonians were bustling and the venues were hustling as Indie Week took over Toronto Oct. 13 - 18. From the next big thing to some more underrated acts, there were many new sounds to be heard over the four-day competition – and I, admittedly, have become a fan of several.
You are here
Vocal looping is no easy feat. Creating the rhythm and rhyme strictly through your own pipes is something that takes raw, uninhibited talent – and Toronto’s Kira May has just that. Appearing on stage in an angelic sequined dress, May took over the Junction Music Hall on Thursday night with layered vocals that echoed through the venue, carrying her effervescence to the very back of the room. Like a slow climb to climax, every vocal loop added depth and synergy to the stage performance with impressive ease.
The whole mad adventure that is MEDIAZOIC started for me at a music festival, nine years and a few weeks ago. Those who know me know the story - it was the weekend of my 40th birthday, the inaugural Virgin Music Festival was happening on Toronto Island, and I had a free pass from my wife and kids to disappear at a music festival, like I used to do when I was a young lad. I went in with one career, and came out after two days convinced I wanted to dedicate the rest of my professional days to music.
Yes, Ontario, we did it – we finally have an epic music festival that rivals the big dogs in the States. WayHome set off the last weekend in July with a bang and Canadians couldn’t be happier. Great music, good vibes, and even better eats made this fest a well-oiled machine.
Like a road trip and Tim Horton’s, The Tragically Hip and Canada Day basically go hand-in-hand. Cellphones lit up the Molson Amphitheatre on July 1st as “Wheat Kings” echoed over the water, Canadian flags flying high with pride. The third Toronto stop on their Fully, Completely tour, the iconic Canucks did not disappoint, enthusiastically playing fan favourites from “New Orleans is Sinking” to “Bobcaygeon”. As I stood on the lawn, watching the crowd mouth every word to every song on such a significant day, it got me thinking - what other Canadian band can cause such a powerful response?
Our Nerese Richter was front and centre as Indie bands from all over the world landed in Toronto recently to play and attend tons of shows, informative panels, and legendary parties during Indie Week. As usual, Nerese took in way more late-night shows than was probably healthy, and even a few panels, so if you missed any of the action and want to catch up, this is the place to do it.
Our intrepid show hopper Nerese Richter was a bit distracted by Arctic Monkeys’ lead singer Alex Turner at their concert last weekend at the Kool Haus, but she still managed to pen a review of the hot and sweaty affair, as "these lads from across the pond [with] their professional sound, engaging performance, and wildly entertaining songs truly brought down the “Haus”.
From Muskoka's infamous Kee to Bala with chart-topping rapper Classified to indie rock royalty Brendan Canning, Feist, and new shoegaze sounds with Beliefs, our Nerese Richter has the rundown of the hottest summer finale up north to all of the TIFF madness in the city. With reviews like these, we sometimes wonder if she ever gets a chance to sleep!
Based out of Montreal, the Osheaga Music and Arts Festival has been around since 2006 and this year it sold out in record time, bringing the attendees a sweet blend of indie rock, pop, hip-hop, and folk over three days of magic. Our Nerese Richter, never one to miss a great festival, made the trek and reports back to readers on the best acts, craziest parties, and newest discoveries along the way; including a Mediazoic playlist featuring music from acts that played Osheaga 2013.
Yes, the music was fantastic and the vibe was just right, but our Nerese Richter took something extra special away from the Firefly Music Festival in Delaware last month. Read about an extraordinary person she got to know and why his story, quite literally, needed to be told.