SingItFwd: A Special Junos Edition.

#SingItFwd

Wednesday March 21st, #SingItFwd - Vancouver's acclaimed charity concert series will return to the Vogue Theatre for a special Junos Edition, more than 2 years after it's final show. Between 2011 and 2016 the annual event sold out the historic theatre by bringing together 35+ of the city and country's most acclaimed musicians alongside the kids of Saint James Music Academy (SJMA) raising awareness and more than $200,000 for the non-profit music school (started 10 years ago by DTES resident and mother, Kathy Walker).



Helping to kick off Juno week you can expect another 8+ artists performing short stripped down sets of music including a performance by event founders and former juno nominees, Hey Ocean!. The SJMA's children's choir and orchestra will also collaborate with performers both in concert and new instalments of #SingItFwd's ongoing video series. For this year's videos, artists will cover nominated artists/songs with the kids.

Mother Mother

Ryan Guldemond: Vox / Guitar
Molly Guldemond: Vox / Synth
Jasmin Parkin: Vox / Keys
Mike Young: Bass
Ali Siadat: Percussion

Anyone who caught on to the slow-burn success of 2012's desolately hook-laden Ancient Mars could sense that something in The Zolas was threatening to bubble over, and after a year of recording, their upcoming record shows an alternative pop collaboration at the top of their creative game. Original members Tom Dobrzanski and Zach Gray have been joined by another longtime duo Cody Hiles and DJ Abell and this is the first album they've completely self-produced at Dobrzanski's Monarch Studios in Vancouver.

The currently untitled, upcoming LP marks a major departure from both the cabaret rock of 2009's Tic Toc Tic and the atmospheric minimalism of Ancient Mars. This time around the band dove headlong into vibrant, experimental pop, stirring modern production into the influences that surrounded them as kids growing up in the '90s.

Even just in the rhythm section you can hear these mispaired influences crop up in unexpected places. Drums that revolve from Queens of the Stone Age to Dr. Dre, bass textures evoking The Pixies or Kraftwerk. Instrumentally the album features flashes of grungy hard-panned guitars, Prince-like synth flourishes, eurodance vocal samples, watery electric pianos and arpeggiators, all of which feel shockingly comfortable in their new homes.

This new album moves on from Ancient Mars' lost love and nostalgia into a cross-section of conversations between a generation of friends about life in 2015; the balancing act we all reckon with between fun and dread. "This album is about how fucked up it feels to step out for a cigarette and a quiet moment at a party, read about disease and climate catastrophe on your phone, finish your cigarette and go back in to dance," says Zach. "Songs about pre-drinking in your apartment, party drugs in Europe, political arson, jerking off to internet porn, pure love in a group of friends, being single and how great it is, being single and how much it sucks, finally realizing what you want to fight for and then getting distracted. It's the realest, most fun album we've ever made by far."

Vancouver's Said The Whale has been on a steady upward trajectory for the past six years, as relentless touring and a prolific string of releases have led to successes including a JUNO Award in 2011 for New Group of the Year and nationally charting singles. In 2013, the tireless five-piece — which includes dual songwriters Tyler Bancroft and Ben Worcester, drummer Spencer Schoening, keyboardist Jaycelyn Brown and bassist Nathan Shaw — will continue to break down doors by releasing its most adventurous and hook-filled batch of songs yet.

The band formed in early 2007 and, following some early EPs, released the debut-full length Howe Sounds/Taking Abalonia in 2008. Said The Whale began to amass a grassroots following through frequent tours, and they scored a string of Canadian radio successes with the albums Islands Disappear (2009) and Little Mountain (2012). These albums earned attention from media outlets like Spin, BBC 6 Music, and Consequence of Sound, and the band was profiled in the nationally televised CBC documentary Winning America. Said The Whale has been nominated for two more JUNO Awards in 2013 for Alternative Album of the Year and Recording Package of the Year (alongside art director Andy Dixon) for Little Mountain.

Hey Ocean!

Indie-Pop band formed in 2005 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Leif Vollebekk

Leif Vollebekk is a Canadian singer/songwriter from Montréal, Quebec.

Louise Burns

According to Louise Burns, the spirit animal hovering above her new album is a Foxx. A John Foxx, to be precise, meaning the impressively cheekboned UK synth pop pioneer who fronted Ultravox in the late '70s. You can find a picture of Burns online, standing in a record store, the proud new owner of Foxx's second solo LP, The Garden. Fittingly, Burns' sophomore album is partly located in the same time and place.

"I went back to the music I first fell in love with," she says of her latest, The Midnight Mass. "Which was the Cure, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Depeche Mode, all of my favourite influences." You could add Berlin-era Bowie into the mix—there's even a tense, Scott Walker-ish track called "The Lodger"—but The Midnight Mass is hardly an exercise in aping Burns' heroes.

She's too much in the habit of being herself to let that happen. And so, while the glacial presence of NY no-wavers Suicide is felt in a track like "Don't Like Sunny Days," it's in a sort of détente with Burns' natural warmth, amber voice, and her instinct for a hook. And while Townes Van Zandt was a seemingly unlikely source for the slow-burning "Heaven"— "I was literally going to bed listening to the 'For the Sake of the Song' every night for three months," she says—Burns tackles it like she's in a spectral version of the Shangri-Las. The effect in either case is something like sweet depression.

Not surprisingly, The Midnight Mass was conjured out of a tumultuous time for the artist. She describes a feeling of "displacement" that only increased after the release of her Polaris nominated solo debut Mellow Drama in 2011. "Jobs, rent, strained relationships, self-doubt— a lot of the record is about the reality check you get in your late twenties," she says.

As for the striking departure in style, Burns was never likely to stop exploring her private musical landscape—something she does here with the aid of producers Colin Stewart and the Raveonettes' Sune Rose Wagner. Sonically, The Midnight Mass is like Mellow Drama after it was shoved through the fifth dimension in a TARDIS. First single "Emerald Shatter" is draped in the heaviest of synths; electric clouds of buzz devour roiling post-punk drums in "The Artist"; her cover of the Gun Club's "Mother of Earth" literally sounds like charged fog.

With players James Younger, Darcy Hancock (Ladyhawk), Gregg Foreman (Cat Power), and drummer Brennan Saul (Brasstronaut) on board—with some additional help from Wagner and Dum Dum Girls' Sandra Vu—a track like ``He`s My Woman`` becomes Rowland S. Howard doing Ennio Morricone in a mossy Romanian field (complete with Jesse Zubot's dancing fiddle). In all cases, the instincts that have carried Burns through an almost 20 year career are never abandoned.

"It doesn't feel like a big change for me. I'm a pop writer," she says, acknowledging that no amount of gleefully applied retro-future artifice can obscure the honesty of her songwriting. Ditching the feel for addictive melodies, meanwhile, would be like learning to un-walk. Louise Burns wanted to make an album that was "coherent and cinematic and beautiful and dark"—and she has—but rendering it into an item as gripping as The Midnight Mass was something she never could have helped.

Peach Pit

Croatian experimental math rock - post rock band from Zagreb.

$25.00 - $35.00

Tickets

Wednesday March 21st, #SingItFwd - Vancouver's acclaimed charity concert series will return to the Vogue Theatre for a special Junos Edition, more than 2 years after it's final show. Between 2011 and 2016 the annual event sold out the historic theatre by bringing together 35+ of the city and country's most acclaimed musicians alongside the kids of Saint James Music Academy (SJMA) raising awareness and more than $200,000 for the non-profit music school (started 10 years ago by DTES resident and mother, Kathy Walker).

Helping to kick off Juno week you can expect another 8+ artists performing short stripped down sets of music including a performance by event founders and former juno nominees, Hey Ocean!. The SJMA's children's choir and orchestra will also collaborate with performers both in concert and new instalments of #SingItFwd's ongoing video series.

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