You probably can’t go wrong with the likes of Modest Mouse or Tokyo Police Club, but we wanted to highlight a few of the non-headlining artists that we’re excited about. Also note that this is not intended to be a “Best of…” because there are tons (metric tonnes, in fact) of talented artist at this year’s event. However, these are some of the bands that we have featured at RTT, so we know a bit about them and we believe you’ll love watching them perform their magic. So, with all of those qualifiers under our belt, here we go….
MOON KING (Toronto)
RTT has been featuring the music of Moon King for several years now, so believe us when we tell you that you don’t want to miss out when the duo of Maddy Wilde and Daniel Benjamin are up on stage doing their thing. They crank out brilliant indie pop with infectious enthusiasm, but there is also a hazy dark edge that lends an air of intrigue.
Alix Goolden Hall, Saturday, Sep 19, 11:30 PM
FROG EYES (Victoria)
Frog Eyes have undergone several line-ups changes over the years, with the only constant being front man Carey Mercer. His wife Melanie Campbell (drums) has now returned to the fold, and is joined by two newcomers, Shyla Seller (piano) and Terri Upton (bass). The band has also solidified its sound, with less vocal meandering and unconventional song structure than in past years. However, Mercer’s poetic words are more compelling than ever.
Metro Theater, Thursday, Sep 17, 12:30 AM
CHAD VANGAALEN (Calgary)
Chad Vangaalen is a modern troubadour of the strange and macabre. If it wasn’t for the dark nature of his lyrics he could almost be mistaken for a contemporary folkster, albeit a quirky one. But, like a camp counsellor who likes to scare the kids with ghost stories around the campfire, Vangaalen has a hankering for tales of despair, horror, madness and death. It’s a dark but delicious indulgence.
Alix Goolden Hall, Friday, Sep 18, 11:30 PM
The trio of Nigel Ward, Julian Flavin, and Dexter Garcia play electropop that is smooth, cool and urbane. But it’s not all summery pop with these guys. On their debut album ‘I Become a Shade’ they display a mature artistry, albeit with the lightest of touches.
Metro Theater, Friday, Sep 18, 11:30 PM
FIVE ALARM FUNK (Vancouver)
Witnessing Five Alarm Funk live is like having a tidal wave roll over you in a thunderous roar of percussion, bass, horns and guitar. It’s a funky groove, but they throw in great helpings of ska, blues, jazz, and metal. Although it’s all great, they truly hit their stride when playing material from last year’s concept album ‘Abandon Earth’.
Phillips Backyard, Saturday, Sep 19, 11:00 PM
VOGUE DOTS (Halifax)
The dynamic duo of Babette Hayward and Tynan Dunfield weave electronic magic. Hayward’s delicate voice floats dreamily in the air, while the intricate musical passages convey a sense of dark mystery. The producer/musicians have the pop sensibilities to craft an accessible soundspace, but they let their experimental sides roam free enough to keep things interesting.
Copper Owl, Saturday, Sep 19, 12:30 AM
GANG SIGNS (Vancouver)
Gang Signs’ music is deviously clever. Its electro leanings will get you on the dancefloor, but there is a richness in the texture that you’ll want to appreciate kicking back on your sofa with some high quality headphones. Their debut full-length ‘Geist’ hasn’t even been released yet, but expect to hear them play a lot of material from it.
Copper Owl, Saturday, Sep 19, 9:30 PM