Posts Tagged ‘Quebec’

Paul Jacobs, drummer from the Montreal indie rockers Pottery, is continuing his own musical efforts with new single “Half Rich Loner” off of his first album “Pink Dogs on the Green Grass” which will be out April 30th. With the touring world shutting down, Paul had the chance to put the finishing touches on this new record. The song saunters in with a very cool guitar lick before the drums kick in and we get some rambling psychedelic sounds swirling and tangling with the music. Paul begins to sing and it seems the title character is pretty lost in what they should be doing with their life.


I feel there is going to be many of these types of songs coming in the coming months, but I don’t know if they are going to swing like this does. The song has British Invasion vibes circa 1966 just as old school rock and roll was changing into a bigger sound

Releases April 30th, 2021

Montréal’s Helena Deland opened for Connan Mockasin at the 2019 Montréal Jazz Festival, where Deland’s deft lyricism and sonic edge left a lasting mark. For her debut album, she’s signed to Chris Cantallini’s (of timeless indie blog Gorilla vs. Bear) Luminelle Records, and her dreamy sound slots nicely next to label mates like Anemone, Hana Vu and Jackie Mendoza. On songs like “Someone New” and the spectacular “Truth Nugget,” Deland expands on themes of interpersonal dynamics and identity in powerful ways. She is undoubtedly one of the best new talents to emerge from the robust Montréal indie scene.

A unique transformation occurs the moment a lover lays eyes on your bedroom for the first time: the room is suddenly, involuntarily no longer your own. Your curated “you” is subject to the impressions of the other, and you try hard to adopt this filter yourself, wondering what information the objects and their position suggest about you. If, in moments like these, the new gaze seems to almost conjure the room, a desperate question arises: what remains of the room without the other? With no external sources of appraisal or affirmation, where does the stuff of the self reside, and how does it take shape?

These blood-deep paranoias set the stage for Helena Deland’s debut album, Someone New, an exploration of gender, power, time and the “self” that finds Deland in full control of her sound and style, even as she asks whether control is ever possible. The album was written and recorded over a period of two years, beginning with Deland’s guitar and expanding into a lavish sonic sphere that blends elements of hypnagogic pop and classic folk. Deland’s voice ties it all together, sometimes hushed in a whisper, sometimes shrouded in distortion, and sometimes full and clear

New song “Pale’ is about the little space left to the actual self in romantic relationships where idealization comes into play,” says Deland in a press release.

The song is accompanied by a simple visualizer featuring foaming water in a stream, which Deland says “represents the question of control when control is ultimately impossible.”

In July Deland also shared the album’s “Lylz.” Then when the album was announced in August she shared the album’s title track, “Someone New,” via a video that showed Deland posing for the portrait painting which graces the album’s cover. Then she shared another song from it, atmospheric slow-burner “Truth Nugget”,

Helena Deland’s debut album ‘Someone New’ out October 16th via Luminelle Recordings.

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Montreal’s Yves Jarvis follows up of last year album with his first new release of 2020, in the breezy, softly lilting new track, “Victim“. Jarvis’ light touch belies the song’s heavier, more harrowing subject matter, which he says reflects negotiating “a tightrope walk between victor and victim”. Beautiful, affecting stuff, and hopefully a harbinger of a larger release from Yves Jarvis sometime in the near future. On the heels of his gorgeous new single from last month, Montreal’s Yves Jarvis shares another one from his just announced new full-length, coming this fall. Sundry Rock Song Stock is out September 25th on ANTI- Records.

“Sundry Rock Song Stock’ is my upcoming album out on September 25th and on Vinyl November 13th.


Releases September 25th, 2020

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Ghostly Kisses is the dreamy pop music of singer songwriter Margaux Sauvé. Today is the release of “Never Let Me Go” EP. We’ve put a lot of work in these songs, we explored ways that we never did before. The music is now yours! , Thank you to everyone involved.

Composed mainly on her travels, “Never Let Me Go” is a 22-minute concentrate of dreamy, intimate and emotionally charged music. Margaux Sauvé called on Louis-Étienne Santais for the production, with the collaboration of the producer and engineer of his Alex Ouzilleau.
She details each of the pieces of her EP.

Call My Name
For Call My Name, Louis Étienne and I wanted to explore more organic sounds and feel human depth. Drums, a string quartet, electric guitar and harp were recorded to add a greater dimension to the piece, cinematic sounds and a little oriental touch.

I wrote Lydian more than two years ago. She talks about following her instincts, listening to an idea, pursuing her dreams. Making music in life as a career is an idea that grew in my mind for several years before becoming clear. The moment I realized it was a great relief. This song is about that moment.

Barcelona Boy
Louis-Étienne and I were in Barcelona during the Catalan crisis in 2017. One evening there were a lot of protests outside and we decided to stay in our apartment and not go out. We always travel with my little Yamaha keyboard reface CP and that evening we started playing in the apartment. That’s where Barcelona Boy started.

Where Do Lovers Go?
Where Do Lovers Go? Talk about my last breakup. For several months, I was in a kind of denial and I tried to convince myself that the situation could get better and that we could reconcile. Where Do Lovers Go expresses the last attempt at reconciliation and negotiation, the desire to find the other halfway.

The song Stay took me a long time to write. She also talks about this latest breakup, but more about the moment I finally accepted that despite the sadness, it couldn’t work.

Ghostly Kisses’ Never Let Me Go will be available on all platforms on June 5th. In a moment of great challenges and pain, I wish that we could all be kind to one another


Released June 5th, 2020

Composition: Margaux Sauvé, Louis-Étienne Santais
Lyrics: Margaux Sauvé, Vann Delorey

Special thanks to the musicians who played on the album.
String quartet: Caroline Béchard, Jany Fradette, Marie-Claude Perron, Suzanne Villeneuve
Harp: Marie-Rose Lehoux
Guitar: Antoine Angers
Mandoline, Acoustic Guitar: Charles-Auguste Lehoux
Drum: Alex Kirouac

Leif Vollebekk: Off the Grid

The best drum machine always is a human being,” says Leif Vollebekk, underscoring the organic aesthetic of his fourth LP. With the soulful New Ways, the Montreal native aimed to escape “the grid” of modern music production: rejecting rigid metronomes in favor of the wavering pulse of a drummer, recording live to tape instead of endlessly editing in software. “The computer or the click track is a robot, so you’re working within robotic time,” he reflects. “You can be human within it, but I want the human to be on the outside.” New Ways exudes humanity. Over the fluid, oceanic piano chords of “Never Be Back,” Vollebekk alternates between a raspy Ray Charles moan and rapid-fire Kendrick Lamar triplet rhymes—occasionally just ahead of or behind the beat, depending on where the groove takes him. “It’s basically only about the feel,” he says, noting the record’s discarded placeholder title, The Way That You Feel. Given how gracefully these songs flow, it’s surprising to learn the album nearly didn’t exist.

Discouraged by the collective shrug that greeted his first two LPs, a pair of folky projects more blatantly inspired by his formative hero Bob Dylan, Vollebekk contemplated pivoting to another career altogether: “I thought, ‘If this doesn’t work, I might hang it up for a little while,’” he recalls. “Nobody needs another record, and I don’t need to keep recording when people aren’t coming to the shows.” He decided to go out on his own terms: Ignoring any kind of outside perceptions of his music, he wound up crafting his 2017 breakout, Twin Solitude, a set of “chill” ballads that generated an influx of Spotify streams, TV syncs and a shortlist nod for the prestigious Polaris Music Prize. New Ways, then, was built on the foundation of that goodwill. He wanted to “connect with people,” to be less meditative and “solipsistic.” So he used a bare-bones recording process that broke down almost every barrier between artist and listener: In the studio, he played and sang accompanied by a live drummer, later embellishing the tracks with unobtrusive bass and strings to “shape” the atmosphere. Having “cleansed his palette” of balladry, he moved away from “ethereal” sounds into a vibe slightly more upbeat, tighter sounding and direct. “For the longest time, I thought I wasn’t supposed to have feel,” Vollebekk says, reflecting on his sonic evolution. Now that feel is everything.

what we say in private

Montreal, Quebec-based musician Alexandra Levy — who records and performs as Ada Lea— is also a painter and visual artist, and traces of her many creative abilities run throughout her debut album “what we say in private”, a beautifully colorful collection of profound pop songs to be released later this summer via Saddle Creek Records .

To her, music and visual art are different vessels for communicating similar ideas. Levy’s appreciation of female artists — including the writer Sylvia Plath, visual artists Frida Kahlo and Eva Hesse, and musicians Karen Dalton and Nina Simone — provides inspiration and guidance, informing her use of multiple artforms as tools for self-expression. Whether it’s creating music or art, “It’s a world that I can build around me and sit inside,”she says.Through all her work, Levy explores the concept of womanhood as it feels and looks to her, as well as love and how it transforms over time. She doesn’t shy away from exploring uncomfortable and painful emotions, either. With the brightness of love, strength, and hope contrasted with the darkness of loss, suffering, isolation, and abandonment, the Ada Lea album what we say in private is a varied and vivid record that constantly seems to shift in the light, bringing together all the intricate influences she’s collected over the years.

what we say in private began with a need to document the ending of an important romantic relationship. Following a tormented period of staying up all night (sometimes days at a time), frantically painting or writing songs as a means of coping, she journalled for 180 days in the hope of finding herself again. She conducted this period of analysis and introspection in private, like most of her creative pursuits, and the process eventually resulted in a rebirth: a rediscovery of self and a new sense of freedom and self-acceptance.

These chaotic feelings and the resulting catharsis are deeply felt in the final recording of what we say in private. Levy wanted the Ada Lea album to feel like a journal entry from those 180 days as she cycled through emotions. Throughout, she expresses feelings and thoughts that all humans experience behind closed doors and alone, but are conditioned to keep to themselves. This is reflected in the lyrics, the artwork, and the songs — together forming a public exhibition of deeply private matter. The album is a collection of raw, confessional, and at times messy emotions, presented to a society that can fear such realness, often favouring the uncomplicated, curated, and manicured.

Levy delivers something very special on what we say in private. Bold and daring, but also gentle and vulnerable, the album finds new ways of presenting its vision from one inspired idea to the next, a big leap into the wider world with passion and exuberance.

Released: July 19th, 2019

woman, here

The way we talk about gender in the music business hasn’t seemed to progress at all over time. “Female-fronted” is still the way bands get pitched to me from publicists, while “all-female” is too frequently cited as something of a gimmick to set a typical rock act apart “Woman Here” is practically what these exploitational press releases promise, though Ada Lea’s new single “woman, here” is the quiet inverse to this declaration, a modest, mildly wonky guitar-driven number in which the songwriter recognizes in the chorus that “[she] can’t be a woman here” (nor “over there”)—whether she’s referring to her industry or anywhere else seems irrelevant.

Less than a year after the release of her highly-acclaimed debut album, “what we say in private”, Montreal, Quebec-based musician Alexandra Levy – who records and performs as Ada Lea – returns in early 2020 with a new four-song EP which acts as a bridge between what’s come before and where she means to go next.

A mix of both the old and new, the “woman, here” EP takes its name from a brand new composition recorded recently in LA with Marshall Vore ( Phoebe Bridgers, Better Oblivion Community Center). Perhaps her most direct work to-date, the new song offers a beautiful glimpse into the bold new chapter of Ada Lea. “I went to LA and recorded the song in a day and a half with Marshall,” Levy says of the song. “The writing and recording of this song happened like magic.”

Aside from the title-track, which is shared here alongside a raw and captivating demo version, the  woman, here EP also offers two previously-unheard recordings from the what we say in private sessions, in the form of the reflective and melancholy ‘perfect world’, and the sparse and dream-like ‘jade’, which was inspired by a John Updike short story.

A fascinating glimpse behind the curtain, Levy says that the new EP should be seen as being “like a second cousin” to  what we say in private. “We included the songs that we still felt close to,” she explains, “but didn’t seem to have a place on the album.”

Ada Lea – “woman, here” from the EP woman, here, Out 27/03/2020

Montreal’s Elephant Stone was formed in 2009 by sitarist/bassist Rishi Dhir. As one of the most highly sought out sitar players in the international psych scene, he has recorded, performed and toured with Beck, the Black Angels, Brian Jonestown Massacre, the Horrors, and many more.



POTTERY – ” No. 1 “

Posted: December 12, 2019 in CLASSIC ALBUMS, MUSIC
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After a solid performance at this year’s South By Southwest and tours opening for Parquet Courts, Viagra Boys, Oh Sees and Fontaines D.C., Montreal five-piece Pottery released their debut EP No. 1, recorded in just over two nights and cut live to tape. Crediting Orange Juice, Josef K and DEVO as influences, Pottery blend the whimsical, danceable and the arty leanings of some of pop and punk’s greatest groups. The instrumental “Smooth Operator” is a slinky opener, evolving from a cool and collected bluesy strut to an anxious punk freakout. Another somewhat rootsy tune “Hank Williams” is unexpected, but it’s one of the peppiest country-punk tracks since Iceage stomper “The Lord’s Favorite.” “The Craft” finds their eccentric post-punk at its sharpest and most cartoonish. Their wonky percussion, frisky vocal snarls and lyrics of life’s rat race result in freakish art-pop profundity

The chorus to “Hank Williams,” Pottery’s debut single, is “Hank Williams does speed for the first time.” Apparently, a musician trying out for the band said that’s what the song sounded like, and it’s as good a way as any to describe their sound — not exactly country, but old-school psych-pop and post-punk spiked with a shot of decidedly modern creative energy. Recorded two years ago in a two-day marathon session, their debut EP No. 1 is a vibrant snapshot of musical clay taking shape. And if their live show is any indication, their next release is gonna be a sweet-ass vase.


“The Craft” from ‘No. 1’ EP out now on Partisan Records and Royal Mountain Records.

It’s hard to classify the sounds of Ada Lea’s “What We Say in Private”, as it mimics the playful intensity of Angel Olsen’s “Shut Up Kiss Me” on opener “mercury” before unraveling into Big Thief–like existential folk on the ensuing “Wild Heart.” The reason for this, perhaps, is Alexandra Levy’s scrapped plan to split the record down the middle between tracks she identified as “sun songs” and those she classified as “moon songs.” The result is a blending of the two on songs like “The Party,” which begins with an inherently lunar acoustic tranquility before the chorus’s glowing ambiance sets in around the two minute mark. More experimental elements shine through across the album via spoken-word postscripts, distorted vocal samples, ambient blips, and—her evident strong suit—lo-fi crescendos, for a truly unique feel.

Montreal, Quebec-based musician Alexandra Levy is also a painter and visual artist, and traces of her many creative abilities run throughout her debut album what we say in private, a beautifully colorful collection of profound pop songs. Throughout, she expresses feelings and thoughts that all humans experience behind closed doors and alone, but are conditioned to keep to themselves. This is reflected in the lyrics, the artwork, and the songs — together forming a public exhibition of deeply private matter. The album is a collection of raw, confessional, and at times messy emotions, presented to a society that can fear such realness, often favoring the uncomplicated, curated, and manicured.

“The Montreal singer-songwriter’s debut album uses heartbreak as the springboard for an innovative brand of indie rock that’s both fiery and introspective.

Ada Lea, what we say in private (Saddle Creek)