New Music: FIN’s Ice Pix

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Vancouver-born, Toronto-based multidisciplinary artist Rebecca Fin Simonetti is a self-proclaimed “tender psycho” and brilliant synthpop explorer.

With vocals that stroke against throbbing dance rhythms and plucked harp samples, Ice Pix’s echoing production brings to mind singing to one’s self in the resonant bathroom of an all-night abandoned church rave. With hollowed out vocals flowing over hallowed ground, Ice Pix is delicate, nodding, and curious to see where the night might take it. Let it take you too.

Best Tracks: Opula, Nightflowers, and  Pike

New Music: Castle If’s Plant Material

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Plant Material is Toronto experimental electronic musician Jess Forrest‘s 7-track love letter to her apartment’s large-n-luscious house plant collection. The album idea sparked after legendary taper/music curator Joe Strutt asked her to play his Music Gallery show, EMERGENTS IIIJoe told Jess to play, “anything she wanted,” and the concept was born.

Castle If’s previous releases are messages received and decoded from the endless drone of deep space—colourful Moog Lil’ Phatty nebulas flanked by milky way Oberheim oscillations, all dubbed to deliberately hissy tape. With Plant Material, Jess returns to earth—or more precisely, she reaches her hands down into the mossy loam of her plant pots, scoops up mineral-rich handfuls, and watches the dark grains of soil tumble back down onto the glossy leaves.

With delicately rendered cover art by painter Anna May Henry, file this release firmly in the card catalogue under library music; urban tropicalia, creature comforts.

Best Tracks: Sedum Morganianum, The Grass Is Greener, and Sansevieria Trifasciata.

Castle If Bandcamp

Tuesday Grab Bag

First of all, let’s kick things off with a brand new track from Seattle’s Belgian Fog (aka Robert Dale). He knocked my socks off with Loveless Way back in February (I’ve been addicted to that track ever since). His new one Before You Ever Talked is a narrative of misplaced expectations and placing someone on a pedestal (something I’m guilty of doing!) Robert has a stellar voice.

Before You Ever Talked – Belgian Fog (Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter)

 

I am in love with this Sculpture remix by Karen Gwyer. Hackle Scam Populator originally appears on the London band’s May 13th release, Membrane Pop (out via Software).

Hackle Scam Populator (Karen Gwyer Remix)Sculpture (Bandcamp | Soundcloud)

 

Now that I’m talking about Karen Gwyer, this track of hers is rad as hell. She makes such great kaleidoscopic, bizarre electronic songs.

Free Food / One Men Striper – Karen Gwyer (Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter)

 

Toronto’s BADBADNOTGOOD are three dearly-loved and critically acclaimed boyz named Matthew Tavares, Chester Hansen, and Alexander Sowinski. Listening to Hedron is like getting a milky spell cast on my eyelids.

Hedron – BADBADNOTGOOD (Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter)

 

Downtown by High Ends is the new side project from Kelowna band Yukon Blonde’s Jeffrey Innes. Beautifully simple yet it packs a punch. I read somewhere that he went to go make this record with friends, but nobody was available so he just did it himself. YOU GO, JEFFREY!

 

Doesn’t Neon Visions by North Carolina’s SMLH sound like the last slow dance at a high school dance, when the balloons are slowly deflating, the streamers are getting stuck to everyone’s feet, and the punch is warm and placid? It might be because SMLH is a real live seventeen year old.

Neon Visions – SMLH (Soundcloud | Bandcamp (free download!))

 

Skydive by London’s Astronauts. (aka Dan Carney) utilizes the perfect amount of ukelele without sounding twee. A rare feat! Reminds me a bit of Tunng in the most wonderful way.

 

Going to end this playlist on a really high, fun note with Strange (Mr. Bird remix) by Derbyshire’s Patawawa.

Strange (Mr. Bird Remix) – Patawawa (Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter)

 

Alright, that’s it for today’s Grab Bag! Catch you guys later on Indie-licious.

Katie’s TGIF Playlist: May 23rd 2014

I just ate a metric ton of veggie chips and I’m feelin’ FINE ya’ll. This weekend, Chad VanGaalen is playing Lee’s Palace on Saturday night, All Toronto’s Parties is taking over Kensington on Saturday, and I bought a bag of instant-chocolate cookie mix for dinner. A boy is coming over to hang out tonight (rare! exclusive!) and I have clean socks (rare! exclusive!).

Since I love Sasha’s TGIFs, I decided to make my own. Imitation is the sincerest form of ripping off your friend’s hard work and originality.

Manhattan’s Ludwig Persik just makes damn catchy music. Willow comes off his debut 2012 EP. I want to do aerobics to this drumbeat, with a lot of uppercuts, grapevines, and spandex wedgies.

Soundcloud | Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr

Portland’s Wampire create dreamy psych pop confectioneries with off-kilter twists. Trains comes off their May 2013 album Curiosity (stream on their Bandcamp here).

Soundcloud | Bandcamp | Twitter | Facebook

Toronto/Edmonton psych-pop musician Michael Rault is releasing a splashy new EP just in time for NXNE. Lost Something has one of the snappiest basslines you’ll hear all week. If this track doesn’t turn into your weekend earworm, I would seriously reconsider your life choices.

Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter

Los Angeles’s The Sometimes Island‘s Amen combines classic 90s dance elements (that keyboard!) with warm vocal layers that loop in and out of each other. Delightful!

Soundcloud | Facebook

London’s Post-Ape track Limbs In The Dark paints some pretty sinister imagery, and the weird bloops make me think of being trapped in a haunted bubble factory. The bubbles also have the ability to tear apart your body limb from limb. IT COULD HAPPEN.

Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter

Caen’s Gomina make rhythmic keyboard-driven rock a little akin to Metronomy with a splash of light, So-Cal vocals.

Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter

Hope that everyone has a wonderful weekend! I’m very excited to bike home tonight (I just gave my bike a light tune-up last night) and work on tightening my rear brakes while those cookies bake in my toaster oven. If anyone decides to go to Chad or ATP II, I’ll be at one of them, so try and spot me!

 

Each Other, The Taste & Michael Rault bring art pop to Smiling Buddha tonight @ 9pm

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I’m crazy about Montreal’s Each Other, the ex-members of Halifax band Long Long Long who reformed to make discordant, angular experimental art pop. Come see them tonight at the Smiling Buddha at 9pm with Toronto’s The Taste and Edmonton’s Michael Rault. Yes, the original show poster says Gold Pony, but they had to drop off due to a family emerg and Michael Rault swooped in to save the day.

Tickets are $7, Facebook RSVP here. Here’s a lil’ samplin’ of what’s in store for tonight:

Each OtherBandcamp | Facebook

The TasteBandcamp

Michael RaultBandcamp | Facebook | Twitter

Hope you guys can make it out! If anyone happens to see me, I’ll be the one in the men’s XL t-shirt, red chucks & high ponytail.