Fave 5: Bands we’re seeing at Canadian Music Week

We love music, and we especially love Canadian talent that not too many people know about yet. Canadian Music Week is creeping up (March 21-25) and it can be overwhelming to figure out which of the 500+ bands you want to check out. We thought we’d share a few of the lesser-known bands performing around our fair city. We’re not claiming to be music critics, so there is no deep analysis or thoughtful criticism here. Just a list of five bands that we like and are eager to check out live.

1. Kids & Explosions
We loved Girl Talk when we first discovered him, so were thrilled to find out that the Great White North has a similar DJ. We first saw the boy wonder (Josh Raskin) perform at the Drake Underground during their What’s In The Box festival, and can’t wait to see him again. His mash-ups are fun, lend themselves to dancing and cleverly mix our fave hip hop, 80s pop, rap, dance and metal tunes into one wicked good time.
Find Kids & Explosions at The Garrison on March 22, 1:30 a.m. (yep, it’s a late one).
On Twitter and on the interwebs.

2. The Balconies
Nothing’s better than a cool chick fronting a band, especially one that has a killer voice, good style and serious stage presence to go along with some solid rock tunes. Check out Kill Count and Serious Bedtime to get a taste. If only we could convince Jacquie to give us a guitar lesson.

Find The Balconies at Cabin 5 on March 22, 11 p.m.
On Twitter and on the interwebs
3. The Treasures
We like variety and nothing beats an awesome roots rock band. These guys have played Hillside, SXSW and NXNE already, so maybe not the most obscure group. But, we still bet many of you haven’t heard of them. We’ll be sipping bourbon and listening to the harmonies in Warning Sign and On My Own. Can’t wait for their album to come out later this spring.
Why WOULDN’T you go see a band that poses for photos like this? 
Find The Treasures at the Dakota Tavern on March 24, 1 a.m.
On Twitter and on the interwebs

4. Cold Specks
Our friends at Arts and Crafts gave us a sneak peek of this songstress from Etobicoke and we were immediately hungry for more.She’s fairly established in the U.K., but just becoming known at home. Her music makes us want to hop on a train, zone out and listen to just her crazy-powerful voice for hours on end. 

Find Cold Specks at the Music Gallery on March 22, 9 p.m.
On Twitter and on the interwebs

5. Jaron Freeman-Fox and The Opposite of Everything
No music festival is complete without checking out a band that’s completely different – and this is that band. Jaron is a whiz on the fiddle and his band plays, well, almost everything. Drums, accordions, bass, guitars, clarinets, keyboards and more have all been seen on stage (it’s a talented bunch). It’s a high energy performance and sounds like nothing you’ve ever heard before. Why not?

Find Jaron Freeman-Fox and The Opposite of Everything at The Garrison on March 21, 9:45 p.m.
On the interwebs

Intrigued about our suggestions? Buy wristbands/tickets here. Quick, before they’re gone. 



Rave: Lexus Live at The Distillery

To fully enjoy one of the last weekends of summer, we’re going to rock out at an amazing indie concert series, presented by Lexus. The Lexus Live event will be held all weekend (Friday, August 27 to Sunday, August 29) at the Distillery District (55 Mill St.), with four fantastic Canadian bands, for free!

The purpose behind pulling together this great concert? The worldwide launch of the tour for the new Lexus CT200h. This hot new hybrid car makes its debut in Toronto, with a prototype and “sophisticated virtual setting”, including an interactive iPad and digital display. 

We’re très excited for Montreal-based, Juno-winning The Stills tonight from 7 to 8 p.m.

The other bands are equally thrilling: Lily Frost and her lovely voice will take the stage Saturday afternoon, from noon to 1 p.m. You might recognize her as the singer and songwriter of the Being Erica theme song, All I Ever Wanted To Be.

The Midway State, who infamously leaked a Peter Gabriel cover with Lady Gaga last year, will perform Saturday from 5 to 6 p.m.


Finally, Paper Lions close out the concert series with a show on Sunday from 3 to 4 p.m. The P.E.I. band has won an East Coast Music Award, and we hope they’ll perform their tune, Travelling.

A cool car and hot bands? See you there! Be sweet and tweet – #lexuslive.

Photo credit: 
The Stills: themiddledistancerunner.wordpress.com
Lily Frost: lilyfrost.com
The Midway State: last.fm
Paper Lions: http://www.myspace.com/paperlionsmusic