Arcade Fire, Gord Downie, Alvvays, U.S. Girls, Weaves Among Polaris Prize Nominees

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Polaris Music Prize Long ListArcade Fire, the late Tragically Hip frontman Gord Downie, Alvvays, U.S. Girls, Weaves, Bernice, Partner, the Weather Station, Daniel Caesar, Faith Healer, Propagandhi, and YAMANTAKA // SONIC TITAN are among the nominees on the long list for the 2018 Polaris Music Prize. The full list of 40 albums up for the honor was announced today … More »

Weaves – “Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)” (Arcade Fire Cover)

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Toronto’s arty guitar-pop four-piece Weaves are crazy good, and their new cover of “Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)” from Arcade Fire’s debut album Funeral is a bop. Recording for Canada’s Polaris Prize Cover Session series, our 2016 Band To Watch Weaves continue bursting with electric energy as on last year’s sophomore album WideMore »

Watch Weaves’ Stripped-Down Stereogum Session

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The great Toronto four-piece Weaves just released their sophomore album, Wide Open — we talked with them about it recently — and today they stopped by our New York offices to perform a Stereogum Session. The band played a stripped-down set (including percussion by way of a guitar case) that featured three songs … More »

Q&A: Weaves On Going Big And Classic Rock For Wide Open

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In the relatively short amount of time they’ve been a band, Toronto four-piece Weaves have garnered a good amount of well-deserved acclaim. Last year, we named them a Band To Watch ahead of their self-titled debut, a collection of bright, frazzled art-rock that wound up earning Weaves a ton of buzz and a nomination … More »

Full lineup and workshop announced for TOMORROW’S femme-tastic Venus Fest in Toronto, feat. Madame Gandhi, Grouper, Lido Pimienta, Weaves, Queen of Swords and many more

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How’s your weekend looking? Barren live music plans? Depressing and excessive testosterone-laden shindigs at every turn? Well then, look no further than a little bit north of the (eastern US) border, because the roster order and set times have been confirmed for Venus Fest, which (sorry to spring this on you) kicks off TOMORROW (September 30) at Daniels Spectrum/Artspace in Toronto.

Organizer Aerin Fogel says that the line up is a “really beautiful representation of the festival,” and she couldn’t be more on point. Where else can you see ace electronic artist and former M.I.A. drummer Madame Gandhi, atmospheric icon Grouper, 2017 Polaris Prize winner Lido Pimienta, the hot-as-hell Weaves, Tunisian revolutionary Emel Mathlouthi, and many more?…At one venue??…In ONE DAY?!? Even “beautiful” is selling this lineup short.

REAL TALK: although one keeps hearing that “things are getting better” (and I believe they are) there is downright inequality throughout the industry and heavy bottom-of-the-bill tokenism rampant at the music festival level. The problem isn’t that there aren’t enough women singing out, it’s that they often haven’t been afforded the platforms to be heard. The inaugural Venus Fest — which boasts a lineup and staff composed entirely of women, non-binary and trans people — is looking to re-balance what has long been a predominantly male-dominated music festival scene and address frustrations held among female musicians and fans alike.

In addition to the acts playing Saturday, a Sunday workshop with Madame Gandhi has also been announced. “The Future is Female: Elevating & Celebrating Femininity in 2017. A Workshop and Talk by Madame Gandhi” takes place THIS SUNDAY evening (October 1) , and, as Fogel notes, “a lot of it is quite mysterious to me still but, as part of it, she is going to give a talk that is supporting people in aligning their social justice work with their personal passion. Kind of building a bridge between the two which is really exciting.” According to the workshop announcement, Gandhi “will discuss her thoughts on the agenda of today’s modern feminist movement: what “the future is female” means, the importance of an intersectional approach to equality, the fight for menstrual equity and what we all can learn from the trans and gender non-conforming community. She will also address her thoughts on “Atomic Living,” the notion that spontaneity can be used productively to achieve our goals.” That should be a good enough justification to stick around the 6ix another day, no?

Tiered ticketing for Saturday’s all-day fest and info on Sunday’s workshop can be bought and sought here.

Venus Fest full lineup (09.30.17):

1:00 – Hex
1:45 – Queen of Swords
2:30 – Ice Cream
3:15 – Witch Prophet
4:00 – Phedre
4:45 – The Highest Order
5:30 – Diana
6:30 – Lido Pimienta
7:30 – Weaves
8:30 – Madame Gandhi
9:30 – Grouper
10:30 – Emel Mathlouthi

Stream Weaves Wide Open

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The giddy, anthemic Toronto indie rockers Weaves — a recent-vintage Band To Watch — only released their debut album last year, but they’re already about to unleash its follow-up into the world. Next week, Weaves will release their sophomore LP Wide Open, a messy and passionate album that absolutely crackles with energy and personality. More »

Weaves – “Scream” (Feat. Tanya Tagaq) Video

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Toronto Band To Watch Weaves and Inuk throat singer Tanya Tagaq were both up for the 2017 Polaris Music Prize last night, and they joined forces to perform a new song called “Scream” to close out the gala. Today, they’ve shared the official version of the song, which follows “#53” and “More »

Livestream The 2017 Polaris Prize Gala

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Tonight, the annual Polaris Music Prize will be bestowed upon Canada’s best album of the year. Last year, Kaytranada won, and Tanya Tagaq took the prize the year before. Tagaq is up for it again this year, and she and other shortlisted nominees including Weaves, Lisa LeBlanc, Lido Pimienta, and Leif Vollebekk … More »

Fall Driving Playlist: Golden Ride

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One of the best parts about fall is the earth’s color palette. Reds, oranges, and yellows consume the trees and, not long after, every open inch of ground. As the days get shorter, the setting sun embellishes the clouds in muted tones of the same colors seen most vibrantly this time of year. Combined, they form the all-consuming beauty of a long fall drive at sunset. There’s nothing like crunching though leaves with your tires while you carve down a hillside grove just as the sun touches the horizon line. Such a rush of nature’s best hues deserves an exhilarating soundtrack, and we’ve made just that for you. Every minute of surging guitar and dynamic pop has a hint of golden sheen and a certain sense of sweet release. So go on, take a Golden Ride… and blast these tunes from every speaker.

This is part two of a two part playlist.

Playlist

1. Gretta Ray – Drive

2. The Pretty Littles – Man Baby

3. Scotdrakula – Skeleton Fever

4. Haggert McTaggert – Landmines

5. LVL UP – The Closing Door

6. Space Mountain – Never Lonely

7. Jay Som – Peach Boy

8. Big Thief – Humans

9. Weaves – Stress

10. Ratboys – Have A Heart

Stereogum’s 40 Best New Bands Of 2016

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40bestNew2016We listen to a lot of music here at Stereogum — it’s sort of our job! — and every year, we attempt to codify all of that listening through lists that take stock of what’s kept us engaged throughout. There are still a few weeks until the hectic year-end list season descends, but we’ve made … More »