Autumn 2009 was a busy time for me, and it was a time that saw me start the original version of Tunes in TO. Though the site launched in October that year, I spent much of September building up content to start the site with. One of the very first shows I shot for the site was when The Antlers played The Horseshoe Tavern, who had just released their breakthrough album, Hospice. It seems like a lifetime ago that I shot that show, and their in-store performance earlier that night at Criminal Records (RIP), but here we are ten years later. In honour of the ten year anniversary of the album, the band has announced a tour that sees them making a stop at The Opera House on April 8th. Tickets for that show cost $37.00 + fees, and can be purchased at Soundscapes and Rotate This.
Speaking of ten year anniversaries, this coming April marks ten years since Stereolab manager Martin Pike announced a pause in their activities. The band released seven albums over a twenty year span, but never broke through to receive any commercial success. Last week it was announced that the band will be reissuing all seven of those albums over a year-long campaign, starting with 1993’s Transient Random Noise-Bursts With Announcements and 1994’s Mars Audiac Quintet. The two albums will be reissued on May 3rd, via Warp Records and Duophonic UHF Disks, as expanded and re-mastered editions on vinyl, compact disk and digital. Along with the reissues, the band will be hitting the road, including a stop at The Danforth Music Hall on October 2nd. Tickets for this one sold out quickly, so it appears as though people have finally caught on to them.
Another 90s UK band in the midst of a revival is Sleeper, who reunited in 2017 after an almost twenty year split. They came back with a small tour, and announcement that they’d be releasing a new album in 2019. That new album is titled The Modern Age, and it is scheduled for release March 22, via their own Gorsky Records. No North American tour dates as of yet, so keep an eye out for those.
Last week, Melbourne-based songwriter Alex Lahey announced the release of her sophomore album, The Best Of Luck Club. The album will be out May 17th, via Dead Oceans, and can be pre-ordered HERE.
Yesterday marked what fans of David Lynch have referred to as “Twin Peaks Day,” in honour of the day in which Agent Dale Cooper enters the fictional town on the cult classic television series. In honour of the show, I’ve included a couple of bands with ties to the show.
The first band is Chromatics, who announced last week that they will be hitting the road for the first time in over five years. They’ll be at The Danforth Music Hall for an already sold out show on May 27th. Fans of the show will remember the band being the first to appear at Bang Bang Bar in the 2017 revival of the series, with performances of their songs “Shadow” and “Saturday”. I chose their cover of “Running Up That Hill” because Kate Bush also made music news when she released the video for her cover of Elton John‘s “Rocket Man” It only felt appropriate to find a way to include both covers this week.
In other Twin Peaks news, we shift our attention to the band who share the name with the show. Last week it was announced that they’ll be playing with Pup and Charly Bliss at RBC Echo Beach on July 21st on a pretty stacked triple bill. Nothing new for Twin Peaks, as far as material, but this marks the 3rd (and largest) show for Pup in Toronto this summer. So if you missed your chance at getting tickets for their two nights at The Danforth, be sure to grab your tickets at Soundscapes/Rotate or online HERE.
In more immediate news, Anderson .Paak & the Free Nationals will be at Rebel TOMORROW, which gives me an excuse to put one of my favourite songs in the last few years on the playlist. Not sure if these prices were what was originally charged, but there are still some tickets available through Ticketmaster if you’ve got some extra cash burning a hole in your pocket.
Last week Hand Habits, the solo project of Meg Duffy (who you might recognize as a long-time member of Kevin Morby‘s touring band), released the music video for their new song “what lovers do.” The song is the latest single from her album, placeholder, which will be released this Friday, via Saddle Creek. Watch the video below, or give the full album a listen at NPR.
Earlier this month, Donovan Woods dropped a new song called “Go To Her”, along with an accompanying music video. He’s hitting the road this week, with a series of sold out shows around Southwest Ontario (London, Kitchener, Sarnia & Meaford, to be exact) leading up to The Junos, where he’s nominated for two awards, including Songwriter of the Year. Go Donovan!
I’m a little late on this next one, as Helado Negro was actually just in town last week opening for Beirut. However, the release of his new album This is How You Smile is just a couple of weeks away. The album will be released March 8th, via RVNG Intl.
Weyes Blood (pronounced wizebluhd) will be releasing her new album Titanic Rising on April 5th. The album is her fourth, but first with new label Subpop. Along with the new album, a tour has been announced that includes a stop at The Horseshoe Tavern on May 24th. Tickets for that show can be purchased at Soundscapes/Rotate, while Titanic Rising can be pre-ordered online HERE.
Back on the topic of 90s revivals, Teenage Fanclub is on the road, and will be making a stop at The Phoenix on March 8th. Last week, the band released single “Everything is Falling Apart,” their first single since Gerard Love left the band, and since their last full length – 2016’s Here. Hopefully there’s more to come.
Just over a year after the release of the Polaris-shortlisted/Juno nominated In a Poem Unlimited, U.S. Girls (AKA Meg Remy) announced they’ll be playing a Toronto show on June 8th at The Opera House. Tickets cost $24.50, and can be purchased at Soundscapes/Rotate. The band has garnered a reputation for their fantastic live shows, so you might want to scoop these ones up quickly. They were named the #1 Best Live Band of 2018 by Paste and Stereogum – who called their performances “a revelation.” If that doesn’t convince you, check out the recently released video for “Time,” featuring live footage from their performance at last summer’s Sappyfest.
Colin Caulfield has been a full-time member of DIIV since 2013, but last week shared his new funky solo track, “Get to the Point.” The song is a follow up to last years release “Looking for Revenge,” and he promises to release more new music later this year. In the meantime, you can check out his gardening show (yes, I’m serious.)
And, closing out the week, the best song nominated for the “Best Song” Oscar. Not that it really matters.
Notable concerts this week
Note: * indicates a show I may be taking photos at
02/25 – MADEINTYO @ Mod Club
*02/26 – Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals @ Rebel
02/26 – Parcels w/ Penthouse Boys @ Lee’s Palace
02/26 – Julia Holter w/ Jessica Moss @ The Great Hall
02/26 – Jacob Banks @ The Danforth Music Hall
02/26 – Matt Nathanson @ Mod Club
02/26 – Alex Cameron & Roy Molloy @ The Horseshoe
02/26 – Miya Folick @ The Drake Hotel
02/26 – The Beths w/ Bad Bad Hats @ The Garrison
02/27 – James Blake @ The Sony Centre
02/27 – Bali Babi @ Hard Luck Bar
02/27 – Empress Of @ The Great Hall
02/27 – Wild Rivers @ The Opera House
02/27 – Dillon Francis @ The Danforth Music Hall
02/28 – The Barr Brothers (performing “Barr Brothers”) w/ Liz Powell (of Land of Talk) @ Mod Club
02/28 – Pkew Pkew Pkew @ The Horseshoe
02/28 – Murray Lightburn (of The Dears) @ The Burdock
02/28 – Feast in the East @ The Jam Factory
02/28 – Mother Mother @ The Phoenix
02/28 – Switchfoot @ The Danforth Music Hall
03/01 – Mother Mother @ The Phoenix
03/01 – grandson @ The Opera House
03/01 – A Bowie Celebratin @ The Danforth Music Hall
03/01 – The Barr Brothers (performing “Sleeping Operator”) w/ Jesse MacCormack @ Mod Club
03/01 – Marc Ribot @ The Jam Factory
03/01 – Eric Prydz @ Rebel
03/01 – Gavin James @ The Horseshoe
03/02 – The Barr Brothers (performing “Queens of the Breakers”) w/ Richard Reed Parry (of Arcade Fire) @ Mod Club
03/02 – Mike Krol @ The Garrison
03/02 – Aurora @ The Danforth Music Hall
03/02 – Greyson Chance @ The Drake Hotel
03/02 – Mat Kerekes @ Hard Luck Bar
03/02 – Blackalicious @ Lee’s Palace
03/03 – State Champs @ The Phoenix
03/03 – Alice Phoebe Lou @ The Garrison
03/03 – Flogging Molly @ Danforth Music Hall
03/03 – Kamaal Williams w/ Henry Wu @ The Velvet Underground
03/03 – Rotem @ The Horseshoe
If you have an upcoming event that you would like included in the weekly concert list, or would like your music considered for the weekly playlist, please email me at email@example.com.