Archive for canadian music

THE CREEKSIDE STRAYS-Blacklisted

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 26, 2015 by TheManicBlogger

It has been long time since The Creekside Strays released an album. Almost 2 years. After listening to their January, 2015 release, ‘Blacklisted‘, it was worth the wait. Which ever one of the Strays came up with the idea to release an album with an acoustic side, I am eternally grateful. Brilliant idea.

cs6The ‘A’ side is the electric side . The cool jazz-funk beat of “Ms. Hunter” is overshadowed only by the wonderful melody. The blues-rock “Hey, Grave Digger“, has an amazing fuzz bass line, and a little Stevie Ray Vaughan  thing going on. “Guilty Parties” delivers way cool vocals, and some double tracking. The changes in “Live This Down” rock, and “Begin To Heal” offers a dynamite melody. “Sucker Boy Blues” gives up great blues riffs, and exciting changes.

 

cs22The acoustic ‘B’ side surprised and impressed me. I heard strings, and a cello in “Blacklisted Interlude“, and maracas and possibly bongos in “Wet Palms“. The wonderful change of key in “Took A While“, and the cool effects in “Let Him Go“, amazing. “Once Again” offers sweet harmonies, and a great riff and solo in an incredibly beautiful song. “Recycled Man” gives us some of the best female vocals I have heard in a long, long time, while”Unfold” has a way cool 1980’s folk-pop-rock, sort of Sugar Ray feel. Stand out track.

 

 

cs2I am trying to figure out why The Creekside Strays are not a household name. They should be!! Blacklisted is an eclectic collection of incredible songs, with blues, jazz, funk, pop, rock, and folk elements. And they just keep getting better. This album demonstrates their maturity as songwriters, arrangers, and producers, and highlights the sophisticated simplicity of their songs. A dynamite album, and a wonderful time. A definite early contender for the I Can’t Believe My Earz 2015 Indie Album Of The Year. I suggested you grab yourself a copy, or 2. You should also check earlier The Creekside Strays releases.

Check out The Creekside Strays here: http://www.thecreeksidestrays.com/home

and here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Creekside-Strays/107927665959639

 

 

 

icbme2https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/05/28/review-archives/

https://www.facebook.com/ICantBelieveMyEarz

twitter@cntblievemyearz

Advertisements

TRACER FLARE-Black Box

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 8, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

tracerflare3As a follow up to the release of their March 2012 EP, Among Us, Montreal’s Tracer Flare released the 5 song Black Box in November 2012,  displaying maturity as song writers and growth as musicians.

Food Chain“, has great transitions, an interesting vocal track and cool harmonies. The soft guitar riff that runs throughout  underlies the distinct progressive rock flavor of the song. The sweet, melancholy and lamenting melody of “Time Bomb” is a wonderful foil for the more upbeat “Madrid“, with great cymbal crashes from Frank Roberts, and great changes. This song demonstrates the vocal range of Marc Morin and the patient guitar of Dan Stein. Add in a change in tempo and some very cool vocal effects, and you have a killer song. “Resuscitate” an up tempo track with a musically punky feel, has tremendous energy that emits  a sense of urgency. I particularly like the vocal effects and experimentation.  And the edgy rock bite. The consistent bass work of Phil Duranlo drives “Somewhere“, with its keyboard heavy sound. There are nice drum shots and rolls which emphasize the story being told here. The emotionality is evident and the elements of Progressive Rock exquisite.

tracerflare2I enjoyed this album. The new wave meets alternative rock with progressive overtones works for Tracer Flare. They demonstrate an intricate use of the instruments with none overbearing. The songs are their strength, and they deliver them with socio-political lyrical content.  The sound is eclectic, a kind of retro-pop-rock with a pair. Definitely worth several listens.

You can listen to Tracer Flare here:     http://www.tracerflare.com/#!music/c61v

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/05/28/review-archives/

JANE’S PARTY: Hot Noise

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 3, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

Home grown Toronto band, and Cameron House regulars Jane’s Party have recently completed their album, “Hot Noise” as the follow up to their 2009  debut, “The Garage Sessions” and the 2011 EP, “Jane’s Party EP“.  Released on Cameron House Records, this Indie band  reminds us what 1960’s pop-rock sounds like.

jane's partyThe opening track, “Palm Reading“, is a wonderful summer patio sitting or driving with the top down song. The light, willowy keys and emphatic drum shots highlight this track. . “Dutch Blue Sky” has a subtle country feel, with twangy vocals and guitars that conjure images of the railroad. The Young Rascals could have recorded “Loose Ends” in a 1960’s New York session. The bluesy tone and carnival feel of “Miles Away” and the subtle funk of “Reds and Blues” demonstrates the band’s ability to write in different genres while staying true to their roots. “Anytime Now” is a classic pop song, encouraging you to clap your hands and tap your feet. “Seasons” has  time signature changes, ethereal keyboards and a very heavy guitar riff, and asks the question, When did The Kinks meet The Beach Boys?  “Meet Me Halfway” shines as the best track on the album. This tune embraces a guitar solo that should be on a Lovin’ Spoonful album, excitingly simple drumming, basic production values and a Beatlesque ending .  What more could anyone want in an album? Every song has wonderfully full and simple harmonies. Not a bad one to be found here.

jane's party1I don’t know where I have been for the past four years and why I was not invited, but Jane’s Party is the event of the season. These guys can write songs with intricate melodies and sophisticated harmonies and make it seem simple. They understand that less is more. They value the song.They have an innate sense of classic pop and have a whole lot of fun making music. With influences such as The Beatles, The Band and The Kinks, what else should we have been expecting?

You can see Jane’s Party playing everywhere as they head out to promote their album. To listen to them, follow the link below:

http://music.cbc.ca/#/artists/Janes-Party

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/05/28/review-archives/

The Creekside Strays Have Found A Home.

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 15, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

In a time when most music seems generic and derivative, the London, Ontario band The Creekside Strays have carved out a niche for themselves. This trio has compiled a significant catalogue of music in a short time, and have just released their third EP, simply titled The Creekside Strays. This Indie band has been slugging it out in the bar scene honing their craft and developing their songwriting for the past three years. The result is a product that showcases both their songs and musicianship. A blend of alternative rock, soul and pop has given The Strays a unique sound and a large, local following.

strays

I hear the influences of The Beatles, Steely Dan, Dave Matthews and the alternative rock of Seattle.  I am immediately taken by the subtle instrumentation; there is no overbearing guitar here and no pounding rhythm section. I ask myself who do they sound like and the answer is nobody. I tap my feet to every song. The production is simple yet profoundly well suited. Like Becker and Fagen, the song writing is exquisite-narratives that float across unpretentious melodies. From the opening track “Shit Outta Luck” to the soft 50s soul of “Keep Your Hands In The Car”, this EP is a journey through time, taking one back to the days when music was just plain fun.

Who says there is no good music to listen to anymore? As one who was fortunate enough to have grown up with the music of the 60s, I can tell you that The Creekside Strays are proof positive that music is alive and well and living in Canada.

To hear The Creekside Strays:

http://http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=2LraVwM0wB0

 

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/05/28/review-archives/