Toronto’s female fronted punk rockers Die Mannequin released their third studio album Neon Zero today! They will be celebrating tonight at Cherry Colas where Tony and Care will be spinning their favorite tracks off of the new record. Since receiving this album back in August, I have been listening to it every chance possible and I’m so glad I did! Opening track “Welcome To The Badlands” sets the tone for this musical journey, collectively modern yet retro with an anthemic feel. Their strong first single “Sucker Punch” was an instant ear pleaser, if you haven’t heard it yet I suggest you take a listen and don’t forget to get your copy of Neon Zero. There were a few songs on this record like “Blood In Blood Out” and “Pretty Persuasion” that I skipped at first listen. Had I not absorbed the records tunes entirely, they wouldn’t have grown on me as they have. Now, “Pretty Persuasion” is one of my favourites, I love the sound of the guitar riffs, they give the track this haunted vibe my ears are drawn to. “Murder On the Dancefloor” is another catchy tune that is worth a listen, compared to their previous records this is the most radio friendly I have heard DM. Quite surprised to tell you the truth but it turned out to be a pretty fucking fantastic surprise!
They have created a vibe that reminds you of 80’s music with a slice of Hip Hop, 90’s, Punk, Grunge and Dance. You can hear all of those influences in there. One track in particular “Girls At the Mall”, reminds me so much of Veruca Salt’s “Volcano Girls” with a little Nirvana to end the track. Very impressed with vocals, major props go out to Care for showcasing her vocal versatility, keep up the amazing work! The band sounded tight, the quality of sound in the production of each sonata is crisp and proper, no ghetto recordings here. “Prettier lips tell prettier lies” from the last tune, “Outta Time” on this eleven track musical adventure is one of my favourite lyrics. I also loved the randomness at the end of the fast paced “Ka-Ching” with the bonus. There are a few tunes like “I’m Just A Girl” that I just couldn’t get into. I tried, and I commend vocals, but the tune itself was a little too Avril Lavignesque for my ears to handle. Neon Zero is worth many listens, from the first time I saw Die Mannequin rock out at the Horseshoe to this album here in 2014 they have come a very long way and I’m liking this new direction. The nicest people you’ll ever encounter, and so beyond talented! Die Mannequin is; Care Failure – Vocals/Guitar, Anthony Bleed – Bass/Backing vocals, Stacy Stray – Guitar/Backing vocals and Dazzer Scott on the Drums. NEON ZERO is an essential listening need! Everyone needs to buy this record and support these great Canadian talents, Die Mannequin’s Neon Zero gets 4 music notes ♪♪♪♪♪ out of 5!
Canadian shit disturbers “Die Mannequin” are back with a new “Neon Zero” feel for everyone to groove with! Watch the new video below, read the press release and sooner rather than later you can read my review on the new record. Buy “Sucker Punch” here and keep your ears and eyes open for the new album “Neon Zero” to be released in October!
“Proving people wrong is my favourite pastime,” laughs the singer-guitarist. “I always feel like I have something to prove. It’s kind of in my DNA. I know people have been like, ‘Oh crap, what is Die Mannequin doing?’ Because I haven’t been in the forefront for the last few years. I’ve been regrouping. But now I’m back.”
And back in the groove. Make that a new groove. A neon groove. Neon Zero, the band’s third full-length and their first for eOne Music Canada, finds Die Mannequin not just resurrected but reborn. Rejuvenated. And retooling their wham-bam-thank-you-man punk and guttersnipe metal with an inspired injection of edgy electronics, big beats, massive melodies and polished production. It’s the sound of the mosh pit invading the club floor (and vice versa). The look of a studded leather jacket over a miniskirt and heels. The equivalent of Courtney Love sucker-punching Metric’s Emily Haines and teaching Iggy Azalea the real meaning of a new classic. You need it simpler? It’s an album that puts the DM in EDM. And turns it into Evil Dance Metal.
You could call it a comeback. An evolution. Even a revolution. But you already know what Failure will say about that.
“It’s really just been a natural progression,” she explains. “If it sounds like a big change for people, that’s just because of the years between the last record (2009’s Juno-nominated Fino + Bleed) and now. I’ve been DJing quite a bit over the past few years, and what I do is very contemporary and quite dancey. And I’ve been writing a lot on piano again. I’ve always had so many different influences that weren’t necessarily just rock. But when I started in music I was 14 and 15 and I kind of got stuck in this teenage punk hell of having to play the same songs for 10 years.”
Well, it hasn’t all been hell. Those songs — like Do it or Die and Saved by Strangers (from their EP-compilation Unicorn Steak), not to mention their 2009 top-20 track Bad Medicine — helped Failure and longtime partner-in-grime bassist Tony Bleed crawl their way from underground clubs to arena stages where they’ve opened for dudes named Marilyn and Axl. Along the way, they earned that Juno nom for Rock Album of the Year, along with a nod in the New Group category. But for every high on the rock ’n’ roller coaster there’s a comedown, and Failure has been no exception to the same catalog of professional setbacks and personal indiscretions as countless other fluorescent heroes.
Getting here from there didn’t come easy. But then, nothing good does. And even if it did, Failure doesn’t do easy. For Neon Zero, she spent eight months of madness holed up with co-producers Arion Anderson and Nathan Quinn and mixed by Gavin Brown (Metric, Billy Talent, The Trews) and Lenny DeRose (Metric, Hey Ocean, Walk Off The Earth), sleeping in the studio and painstakingly crafting these tracks — mostly by herself, mostly from scratch. Then she got down to business, bashing and belting out the bulk of the album in an eight-day marathon with Vancouver’s Andrew Conroy. The ends justify her means. The stomping swagger of first single Sucker Punch, the ecstasy and violence of Welcome to the Badlands, the pulsing fuzz of Murder on the Dance Floor, the grind-groove of Knock Me Out, the ominous slow-burn of Pretty Persuasion, the live-for-the-moment anthem We Own the Night, even the tender-hearted neo-balladry of I’m Just a Girl — they upgrade and update DM’s scrawled sonic signature with sharp synths, layered vocals, undeniable grooves. But Diemaniacs needn’t fear the repurposing — it all comes without sacrificing one iota of Failure’s guitar-shredding grit.
“I am such a riffy chick,” she admits. “I can’t help myself. I’m a guitar wanker. There is never enough rock in it for me. I love bands like Sleigh Bells and The Kills, where you have both electronic and rock. That was the whole point, to show you could have it all together. It’s trickier. You have to put more brainpower into it. But when it works, it’s way deep and way more guttural. The music sounds better when you can get it to run hand in hand.”
Now, freed from the shackles of her past, with the most focused, consistent and fully realized work of her career firmly in hand, Failure is ready to run headlong into the future.
“I made this album because I want to kick down doors,” she explains. “I want to be able to really evolve and grow as an artist and not have to do the same old thing again. I don’t want to have to play by the rules. That’s why I needed to do this.”
Here we are again! Another Entertainment filled year of FridaeTV coverage ends and a new year of fun journeys begins! The year of 2012 had many incredible live moments and just as many failed attempts by bands new and old. Below is the list of the top ten best live artists I have had the pleasure of covering this year, they all have that something special that transcends on stage. You can find the reviews in the archives as well as videos on Fridae TV Youtube and photos not in the galleries on Fridae TV Facebook. I am very excited as to what the new year will bring! Wishing everyone an amazing 2013, thank you for all the love and support!
Another Pride has passed us by, it was filled with love, laughter and music. This year was the 32nd year for Pride Week in Toronto with three parades; Trans March, Dyke March and the ever famous Pride Parade to end the week off. As always Toronto never just has one thing going on and this year it was the Canada Day long weekend adding even more events across the city. I was torn didn’t know if I would make it this year, I missed the Dyke March and the major Parade on Sunday July 1st but I did manage to hit up the Trans March on Friday June 29th.
It was my first time observing the Trans March as they walked down Church, people didn’t know what was going on, it was very random and kind of rude that people were passing through as the Marchers tried to make their way. Unlike the bigger parades which have barricades along the route, the Trans March had nothing to keep the public from interrupting. Next year I suggest a few police officers guiding the March if there are no barricades to inform the public to keep to the side of the road.
So many fantastic performances by amazing bands and Queen’s! It was the first time I saw ‘The Cliks’ who’s Frontman Lucas Silvera once had a female exterior. They were fantastic, Silvera has a really good voice, I do wish he used his diaphragm a little more. But! It could have been mainly due to the nervous pre-proposal jitters. Silvera proposed to his girlfriend ‘Sky’ mid set after she sang a tune with them. Her answer was yes! I am so happy for the couple, I wish them all the best with endless years of wedded bliss! The band put on a great set, the crowd loved them.
This was a Pride of musical firsts for me Bif Naked was performing next, never have seen her perform live and I’ve been a fan of her music since I first heard ‘Spaceman’ in my early teens. I absolutely loved that she opened the set with that track. She performed most of her hits, all with such vitality and heart, you could tell she was thrilled to be up on that stage. Such a strong amazing Woman who has survived her battle with cancer and three months before Pride she had heart surgery, yet here she was rocking out on stage for the people.
NXNE 2012 came and went. This year by far there were more people and a lot more bands, films, comedians and parties! Basically, everything I hear SXSW is, North By Northeast tries to live up to with a Canadian twist. At these festivals you don’t often get what you want, unless of course all you want is to get drunk, socialize and see lots of bands! That is very possible every year and with the growing array of amazing BBQ’s and rooftop parties, how do you choose which ones to go to? I can never decide so this year I just RSVP’d to every email invite and just party hopped, I don’t do Facebook invites there are just too many. I was super excited to use my new camera, it is amazing in low lighting which is absolutely perfect for the dimly lit venues in the city. I’m still figuring out all the new settings of a pro dslr, so these were not the best shots but a huge improvement from my past photography. Sadly the one interview I did do was some how erased from my computer after uploading. How that happened, I have absolutely no idea but I will be rescheduling an new interview guaranteed!
Extremely disappointed that I lost majority of my footage from day three and four because they were full music days without me forgetting anything. I filmed fifteen bands of the thirtyish I managed to actually see and twelve of which I wanted to show you! Included in the footage fiasco was some seriously fantastic filming of Die Mannequin at the MOD Club. Care the performer that she is took it to the bar, what I mean by that is, she migrated from the stage through the crowd to the bar stage right, hopped up on top and did her thing for a few minutes, I had that all filmed! Thankfully Die Mannequin is performing at Pride Toronto this Sunday July 1st, come check them out! I will be there capturing some proper refreshed filmage.
Anyways, just thinking about the lost footage irritates me so let’s move this along to Dearly Beloved. The only survivor from Friday’s video’s was Dearly Beloved‘s ‘To Better Days’ off the bands new record “Hawk vs. Pigeon.” How fucking ironic is that?! The only song that worked was “To Better Days” it was like God playing a delayed April Fool’s joke! This was definitely no joke, especially after trekking to the Mod club during little Italy celebrations and trying to get through a packed crowd to shoot a few stills…Total nightmare! Every year I forget about the street closures, next year no MOD club treks for me during NXNE, I have to put that in my calender.
Throughout the trek I missed Dearly Beloved’s first set opening for Die Mannequin so I promised myself to make sure I was at the Velvet Underground for the band’s second set of the night. My promise was held and I did make it to see Dearly Beloved at Velvet! The first track from what I could hear was “John Coltrane” I filmed it but the vocal levels were very low, did the sound guy notice? Not at all, but many sound tech’s complain that they have the levels perfectly set. Most of the time that is not the case but at least the band mentioned it and he fixed it. The band put on an energetic set, I was enjoying their sound and performance. Rob Higgins Bass and Vocals has a nice tone, my ears liked what they were hearing. The whole band is Niva Chow – CoVox, Gavin Maguire – Drums, Tristan Avakian – Guitar. Definitely have to check them out again in the future as should everyone else!
Let’s rewind to day one when everything started, I decided this year one of the NXNE festival days was going to be dedicated to Comedy! I chose Wednesday June 13th to laugh my face off at the Lower Ossington Theater and possibly check out a few bands after. As the first comedian was on stage I took my camera out to shoot a few stills nothing, the camera wouldn’t even turn on. I didn’t know what the problem was until I opened the battery compartment, problem found but can’t be solved because I clearly left the battery in charger at home. Every festival there is at least one mishap without fail, this NXNE it was on a larger scale of boo. The Comedians were hilarious, I was laughing so hard I couldn’t stop crying and my face started to hurt. The host of the first half was Trevor K Wilson who also opened the showcase and did a great job warming up the stage.
Next up was Todd Graham who had this dry sense of humor, a different approach than most of the comics that I’ve seen. He was so funny once he got a little more comfortable on stage and into his set, the audience loved him. Between each set Trevor Wilson would do mini sets keeping the crowds entertained and what a great idea that was, I would have walked out because my restlessness was kicking in. Every show should have a comic between sets maybe then people wouldn’t bounce after the first shitty band. I was most looking forward to Debra DiGiovanni, I’ve seen her on Comedy now but never have seen her live. She was fantastic, she should have been the headliner because the kid headlining was pretty dryly unfunny, I left five minutes into his set. I wanted to see bands but my camera was useless for the rest of the night and my attempted cell phone shots are so blurry as you can tell! Earlier that day I told Joanna to hit up the Elmo to shoot Gus and Scout just in case I didn’t make it on time from the comedy sets. Perfect, that was my genius Greek moment, thankfully I didn’t forget to tell her.
Gus and Scout from Rhode Island are a country bluesy folk duo, the band is Gus Wenner – Guitar/Vocals and Scout Willis – Vocals. When I got to the Elmo it wasn’t a full house but there were people there, mostly industry folk who were obsessed with catching Demi Moore and Bruce Willis’ offspring in action. I was curious as always, to see if they were any good like with any new bands or duos. Once they began to play immediately you saw the chemistry they have together and Scout’s vocals aren’t too bad. I noticed she needs to work on her stage persona because more than a few times it looked like she didn’t know what to do and kept glancing over at Gus, who is clearly the seasoned musician of the two. Although the songs were passable and need a lot of work, I would see them again because Scout’s voice is different she has this raspy soul to it and as long as she keeps working those pipes she can be an incredible artist one day.
Day two was Thursday June 14th, designated party day! There were so many parties on this day I made it official party day and it was a smart advanced decision because I forgot my passes at home. Yes, that did happen but it really didn’t matter because I was guest-listed for all the parties anyway I didn’t need my pass until later if i wanted to check bands. After all the day parties in the downtown Toronto core, we migrated to Toronto Island for a little bonfire shin dig. We went, we drank, we saw, we wandered, Thursday was such an interesting day and I did take some cool shots of the Toronto skyline from the ferry. Saturday day 4 was another party filled day but it didn’t compare to Friday’s fantastic Jager Parking lot BBQ, free food, drinks, hair cuts and tattoos. I love Sailor Jerry’s trailer and maybe their rum haha!
Saturday night’s music was to include the Flaming Lips but I was rejected literally for every single show at YDS so I fucked off and didn’t bother going to that area at all the whole week! I heard the Flaming Lips and Bad Religion were ass by a number of people so glad I saved myself the torture. The only other band scheduled that night was Limblifter at the El Mocambo. There was an hour to kill so I went to check the current band playing at the Elmo, five minutes later I ran back out and migrated immediately to the Horseshoe. Once at the Shoe there was this massive line to get in, I wondered who was playing to create this long line of irritated people. Walked up to the door and as I was about to go in, some man grabs me and yells in my face asking me who I am mumbling something about the crowd in line and pointed to them. Literally two seconds later he shut his mouth as he saw my media pass and clearly felt like an ass. The whole time during that verbal attack I uttered five words to the grumpy old man “Here to check out set”. I could have been a bitch and said something but I kept my mouth shut, went into the venue only to come back out because it was too rammed and the band was ass! They sounded like every other folksy hipster band floating. Didn’t get why people were dying to get into the sweatshop to see some bearded folksters in skinny jeans. I still don’t remember what they were called even after I was told about fifteen times.
Back to the Elmo I migrated, hoping the retched band was finally off the stage and Limblifter was on. It was perfect timing because the venue was accumulating bodies and they were getting very tight at the door, I’ve never seen people turned away at the EL Mocambo door…First time for everything! The Elmo was heating up and people were dropping like flies. I was standing by the stage right area when a dude dove face first on some gear boxes backstage, that was a trip! Nobody knew why he passed out but security came quickly and helped him to safety. Limblifter hit the stage ten minutes later and the crowd was loving this 90’s revival. I was like ten or eleven when they first emerged onto the Canadian music scene in 1996, their songs are okay not exactly what I would listen to on the regular or call Alternative rock, to me it sounds more like country folk rock. Bassist Megan Bradfield stuck out like a sore thumb, you could tell this was basically her first show, super awkward to watch and needs a lot more work on her stage presence. As for the frontman who is the only original member of the band Ryan Dahle did alright but needs to work on his vocals, they were pitchy and a bit unstable. I have two filmed tracks of this band but only one actually made the cut, you would think the first Toronto show in a long time they would bring their A game!
I saw a bunch of other bands in the migrations towards the last destination of the evening and none of them stuck in my mind enough to jibber about individually, except Modern Boys and Modern Girls who played The Hideout on Friday the 15th. They have improved greatly since I first saw them at Edgefest a few years back and would love to check them out again. The Hideout is always the last stop at these festivals and it was my last stop of the night. At 2am I wanted to catch A Primitive Evolution because the night before I could not get any video, Cherry Colas was just too packed to film anything.
I have never seen A.P.E before Friday even though they have played many shows in the city, I always missed them! This time I got lucky and was able to check them twice and finally film a tune “Lord of Reason“. They were pretty good, I liked the sound of frontman Brett Carruthers voice and the way he played his axe. The natural interaction between Bassist Stephany Seki and Carruthers was fantastic! I loved her vibe she can rock her bass to the fullest, unlike the femme bass of Limblifter I saw earlier. Stu Dead on the drums did his thing, keeping the beat tight in the venue where his Playdead artwork is muraled all over the place. (A.P.E) I need to see again, totally loving the sound but one thing Brett needs is a little more confidence in his own talents. For footage and more photos of the bands check out www.facebook.com/Fridaetv and www.youtube.com/Fridaetv
The only artists I really wanted to see all this NXNE were Raekwon and Ghostface Killah of Wutang but I was denied access and was not feeling the trek in a massive crowd. Instead I went to MMVA hotel after parties, where I chilled and partied with awesome people. That’s all from me folks, stay tuned for Joanna’s NXNE experience.
DIE MANNEQUIN AND DEARLY BELOVED’S CROSS CANADA TOUR
Chaos, tempered by love and delivered with great fury. That’s Dearly Beloved. And when they collide with their friends in Die Mannequin what you have is a pairing of daring, gargantuan rock bands, stomping all over North America on tours, leaving past record labels round the bend, and finally – coming together for what could already be the Canadian Rock Tour of the Year.
Newly signed to eOne Music Canada, Dearly Beloved’s new album Hawk vs Pigeon was recorded in Joshua Tree, California at Rancho De La Luna and the band’s Phoebe Street Studios. Coming out on May 22nd, the album is dominated by band member Rob Higgins’ rebirth of sorts and a disappearance to the desert for a recharge and a rethink on mortality. Partner in music and life-long friend Niva Chow and new drummer Gavin Maguire extend the spirit of barrier-trashing rock innovation, coming together for what is most certainly their most fully-formed album of their career. Hawk vs. Pigeon features guest appearances by Dave Catching of Eagles Of Death Metal /Earthlings?, Brendan Canning of Broken Social Scene and Patrick Pentland of Sloan.
Cutting his teeth in seminal indie rock bands like Change of Heart and Tristan Psionic while Niva was wowing crowds in the punk band, Sticky Rice, their chops were put to good use on Dearly Beloved’s first LP, You Are The Jaguar”, where the band played 40 shows in 60 days across Canada in 2007, and a slew of shows in the US with Juliette Lewis and Sloan to promote their They Will Take Up Serpents album in 2011.
At the centerpiece of Hawk vs. Pigeon is a genuine heart-stopper – “To Better Days” an intensely personal song of inspiration and future building in more ways than one. Care and Tony from Die Mannequin perform on the song, and it’s a call to arms that resonates with both bands.
Die Mannequin is a group not without their own dramas. They started in the spring of 2006 when Failure recorded her first EP, How to Kill. Death from Above 1979’s Jesse F. Keeler took care of the drum duties as well as production. Die Mannequin opened for Guns N’ Roses on the Canadian dates of their 2006 North American Tour, and supported Sum 41 on their Strength in Numbers tour during the fall of 2007.
2009’s Fino + Bleed marked Die Mannequin’s first true studio album, and things get a little bit eventful after that. The record was produced by Matt Hyde (Slayer, Children Of Bodom, No Doubt) and mixed by Mike Fraser (AC/DC, Aerosmith, Ozzy Osbourne) and features Jack Irons (Pearl Jam, RHCP, The Wallflowers) on drums. Two massive tours followed, one headlining, and one supporting Marilyn Manson. In 2010 director Bruce McDonald started to work on his acclaimed film Hard Core Logo sequel – Die Mannequin was his first choice in carrying the torch of the original films’ group which featured Hugh Dillon as Joe Dick.
In this follow-up film Bruce McDonald (reprising his role as himself), sets out to follow Care Failure (who claims to be channeling the spirit of Joe Dick) and her band Die Mannequin out to Manitou Beach, Saskatchewan in the dead of winter to document their new recording at the famous Danceland ballroom. While filming Hard Core Logo 2, Bruce set up the production so that the band was actually recording new tracks live off the studio floor with legendary Canadian producer Peter Moore (Neil Young, Diana Krall, Cowboy Junkies). HCLII wrapped up production 2011 and is now set to hit theaters across Canada this week and will launch Die Mannequin onto a whole new fanbase.
On June 12th, The Danceland EP entitled features new songs along with tracks recorded during the filming of Hard Core Logo 2. The music is raw and stunning, and represents a group that is starting to enter the zenith of their career.
11-May-12 Dearly Beloved/Die Mannequin Thunder Bay ON Crocks
There is a need for some sort of structure when planning coverage for Canadian Music Week / Canadian Music Fest whatever they choose to call it. There must be at least three bands you already plan to see or the festival will swallow you up and spit you out leaving you dazed and confused staring at the ceiling of the Royal York hotel where you can find the hallways loitered with passed out musicians drooling on the carpet beside their own vomit…If you think you can manage twenty five bands a night as media, go ahead and try I did! When I first started doing these festivals I killed myself trying to cover as many bands as I could, now I have come to the conclusion if I bust my ass I can cover sixteen bands a night but that leaves no time for partying which is how you network in this industry. I still stress out, make my schedule far too ambitious and then feel guilty for not filming and seeing more bands. What you always have to remember is you can’t catch them all, so don’t feel guilty about missing that band and I keep telling myself that every time a festival comes around.
Dush and Dissension
First night launched with the Montreal Metal showcase at the Opera House which was east of all the action where some pretty serious metal was shred! Of course where there is the good, there is also the ass and that just ruins the flow of the night. You know the kind of band I am talking about, the ones that think they are so amazing yet their whole set sounds like one long really shitty song. There was one of those bands between these two that intrigued me. Dush and Dissension are both very different bands with different sounds and genders, one band “Dush” is fronted by a Female and the other was Dissension your usual all male metal band. Both these bands were not phenomenal but have tremendous potential, Dush front Woman Mira Soloman has a spectacular voice but needs to work on her pitch but otherwise very powerful. The songs need work some sound identical, even the ballad type track they played had comparable sounds to the other songs in the set.
The larries of Dissension rocked out hard; the growls were fantastic as was the playing of the instruments. There were moments when Vox Nathan Afilalo would talk to the crowd trying to get them all riled up with his angry face, it was comical to me I didn’t take him seriously because it all came off too contrived. I stayed for a few more tunes to tell you the truth I decided to call it an early night because Nikki Sixx’s interview was before noon the following day and I was still trying to free myself of this nasty cold. The one thing that I will never forget about the Montreal Metal showcase is the dude who was moshing in a grey suit. As I headed to the streetcar a friend called and begged me to join the festivities at the Horseshoe. I did get on the wrong streetcar because I was too preoccupied with the phone to notice until I passed where we should have turned, obviously it was meant to be. Recalling all of the next events…No idea! The band rocking the Horseshoe when I arrived I am guessing was ‘Chasing Amy’ who didn’t sound too bad, it’s all a blur after that. Five A.M and I finally make it home to unload and recharge everything and maybe catch a power nap…So much for my early night!
Next day was buzzing, literally I was still buzzed from the night before yet surprisingly I was early and made it to catch Nikki Sixx have a little discussion with Jeff Woods about his current projects and the new Motley tour which actually has a Toronto date, I would hope so after all the noise the people made during the interview after he announced that Motley is touring this summer. Sixx had many relevant answers to Wood’s questions about various topics from his music, photography and the soon to be release ‘This Is Gonna Hurt” which is a book hitting shelves April 12th and Record by the same name with Nikki’s band SIXX: A.M dropping May 10th. The first single off the ‘This Is Gonna Hurt’ album is “Lies Of the Beautiful People” available on iTunes. I have to give Jeff Wood’s much respect because he delivered an informative interview actually getting to some really interesting discussions in the hour long interview. You can find the links to the full Explore Music interview at the bottom but here’s a little conjoined clip I filmed of Nikki discussing Photography.
Ubiquitous Synergy Seeker (USS)
That night I decided to check out Ubiquitous Synergy Seeker (USS) at the Phoenix which is another outskirts venue, why I decided to trek all over the city this year is beyond me but I just wanted fresh spots you know! I love USS their energy is like nothing else you’ve seen! Two larries who entertain like there are more than just them on the stage, the crowd was insane! USS is their own entity; the fan base this Indie band has come to acquire proves they have something special. Once I reached the venue it was packed, completely impossible to get feasible video footage or photos but I did film a few clips and they will be in the CMW highlight video coming soon! The people love Jason “Human Kebab” Parsons and Ashley Boo-Shultz the dynamic duo that is USS, they will be dropping their new record May 3rd and set to embark on a Cross Canada tour in support of the record with Ashley MacIsaac on the fiddle! It’s weird to me I’ve never seen two male Ashley’s on one stage together should be interesting fun times if I can catch the Toronto show! When USS swings by your city go see them, they are spectacular.
Canadian Radio Music Awards and Troy Carter
Friday I checked out the CRMA’s (Canadian Radio Music Awards) last year I missed them and so I tried my best to make it to these ones and that I did. There were performances by a few of the nominees Ash Koley, Hollerado, JRDN who also won awards; you can find all the winners at www.CMW.net.
I kept seeing JRDN all over the place and he was always with this one guy who is seriously too hot! From what I remember of the presenters Melissa Etheridge was one but I missed her all together at CMW. This particular event was a super challenge the performances and awards were so close together no time to catch them all, I had to run all the way around to get back into the media room from the award room for some press shots. It was crazy! I had to work this one on my own but later was joined by my longtime friend Designer-Photographer Mikey Sin who came just in time for the Troy Carter interview. He took the shots and filmed a clip while I listened intently thinking there would be that golden piece of information that we can apply.
The interviewer Larry LeBlanc (His name actually is Larry!) didn’t have any questions pertaining to any formula used with Carter’s artists he focused more on what it was like meeting Troy’s most popular artist Lady Gaga for the first time and what she is like. Who cares, if you have to try that hard to be “Different’ clearly you’re just like all the other sheep! When you are too legit and absolutely born this way, there is no need to be so desperate for attention! I think someone has something to hide! The girl is obviously completely lost in the hype of the character she portrays and doesn’t know what’s real anymore. Think about it and watch Troy discuss a few things, the best response was “Canada is the Music industry’s best kept Secret” duh! That’s the only interesting thing I picked up as I was dozing in and out; Larry talked way too much and asked too many irrelevant questions there was no meat! Unlike the Jeff Woods interview with Nikki Sixx, this one had way too much lettuce! The coolest part was after the interview local Toronto band ‘Courage My Love’ played some acoustic songs in the hallway!
Seventh Rain and Chris Assaad
Prior to manager Troy Carter’s interview I did an interview myself with a band from Calgary “Seventh Rain” who were in town to perform at the festival, I could not make it out to the show unfortunately for me but they did give me their current record “The Ghost In Me” and I have to say when I listened to it I was pleasantly surprised, they are so good! The band is Ryan Williams, Rich MacFarlane, Luke Sheppard and John Byskal watch the interview below, I loved their personalities! When they come back to Toronto will most definitely cover the set!
Later that night I was to hit up Good Charlotte’s set at the Phoenix but I was told FridaeTV was declined media access so I didn’t go but then I checked my email a few hours after and I was approved. If they told me sooner I could have made it out! Instead I saw a few artists at The Royal York, like the fabulous Chris Assaad who has such a smooth voice and totally wowed everyone in the Library Bar at the Hummel Entertainment showcase, myself included. He needs some work on the vocals and some catchier tracks but the talent is unspeakable, it was too small a stage for such a great talent in the making. Carter was right about Canada being the best kept secret but we Canadians already knew this and everything else that was said in the interview. Chris Assaad has an extremely bright future, he plays the Guitar well the construction of his songs are fitting to him he doesn’t try to be anyone else. Looking forward to seeing more of his live shows, this set was long overdue but definitely worth the wait.
The Indies!! I wasn’t able to hit up conferences in the afternoon prior to The Independent Music Awards (The Indies) as I planned. The days prior I was literally running all over the place in my new boots while fighting a virus, it was not exactly a pleasant experience but as always I was a trooper and made it to the Indies! I am extremely glad I did because I managed to film a Hollerado track which I failed to accomplish at the CRMA’s the day before and I also managed a few shots of Sammy Hagar but Mikey was able to capture more when Hagar presented with Much More Music’s Matt Wells, winning! The headliner for the evening was Janelle Monàe but setting the stage a blaze prior to her set Juno winner Shad threw down a few rhymes hyping the crowd even more than they already were, with tracks like ‘Telephone’ and ‘The Old Prince Still Lives At Home’. The turnout at the Indies was amazing so many more Canadian artists came out this year like Die Mannequin who are an amazing female fronted Canadian band that can shred harder than many male fronted rock bands, they presented an Award and had a set later that night.
Not quite as many bodies in the actual concert room as last year but definitely more enthusiasm and lots of fabulous energy from the people. Once Janelle hit the stage the crowds screams echoed, one directly to my right was literally making me deaf
and you can hear her scream in one of the tracks I filmed, it’s all silent then she lets one rip, too funny I love Teenies! Miss Monàe was a little behind getting on the stage and once she was on it, the whole production drowned her out. The intro was her on screen as a futuristic Alien lady jibbering about Dancing or Dying the song about to be played and some other stuff. Once visible on stage she still seemed to just blend she did not stand apart from her dancers the stage was not commanded! She just needs to relax a little you can tell her nerves were in full force and her outfit needs to be different than her dancers otherwise she just becomes background in her own performance as she did here. Vocally the girl turned it out, she has talent that is versatile and I like that, I wish her mic levels were up a bit there were moments when the live instruments were drowning her out. I would recommend checking her out if you can!! That my friends, is CMW 2011 festivities in the shortest possible way I could adapt it! I didn’t even have a chance to check out any films but you can catch some tunes filmed on FridaeTV Youtube and FridaeTV Facebook! As promised here are the links to the Nikki Sixx interview with ExploreMusic’s Jeff Woods! Part 1 and Part 2 see you next year the week after SXSW, weird but true they are flipping the script for Canadian Music Week next year! A huge Thank you goes out to the wonderful people of Planet3 Communications for all their hard work and help.
Die Mannequin rocked the Tattoo Rock Parlour for FREE to the first 200 people who made it inside, presented by Hyacinth Group. I was scheduled to do an interview… It did not happen, lead vocals Care Failure was sick, if the girl can’t do it she can’t. I was sick too, still am. I’ll eventually do an interview with the band but for now I am going to tell you a little bit about how the performance went down.
The current band is: Care Failure – Lead Vocals/Guitar, Anthony ‘Useless’ Bleed – Bass/Backup Vocals, Stacy Stray – Guitar and Dazzer Longknife on the Drums. I have seen Die Mannequin once before at The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern way back at North by Northeast 2006. Since then I haven’t had the chance, there are way too many bands to check out. I eventually get around to seeing those I missed this is how it goes folks, you can’t make them all. If you want to know more about Die Mannequin hit up their Myspace and Website.
The strobes were crazy! Made me a little dizzy as I was filming but it was worth it because it looks so sick on film!You can check out a few of my favorite tunes from the set at the end of the article. Care tried the best she could, to give her fans an amazing performance even though she was sick, downing a bottle of honey between a few tunes instead of JD. She is truly a forming Axe-Mastress getting in the crowd shredding as they surrounded her. She wanted to stay and just play but the fans carried her, resulting in surprise crowd surfing.
There were a few tunes that had similar chords and rhythms, other than that I love their sound! Failure does however need to work more on her diction she was mumbling a lot, the clarity wasn’t there. I won’t talk about the vocals because she was sick, I know it’s beyond hard to sing when you’re sick and she did turn it out. The band did great backing her up and holding their own. Bleed’s chemistry with Failure is obvious, bouncing off of each other talking to the crowd as if they were at home jammin’. Care and Anthony are the originals Stray and Daz were recently recruited, Die Mannequin is; ‘Failure’s Child’ (Hint hint..write a song). They tore it up regardless of Care’s wirus! Unpredictable, entertaining, talented and magnetic. The band now as a whole has this incredible synergy, that was missing when I first saw Die Mannequin they have found it. Let me tell you, Failure can rival all of the similar female singers who will remain nameless, go check DIE MANNEQUIN out!
Huge thank you goes out to my girl Melanie Schade for the incredible photos.
Hyacinth Concerts and Nightlife present a FREE SHOW with…
DIE MANNEQUIN and special guests at Tattoo Rock Parlour this Friday
Hyacinth Concerts and Nightlife present a special free concert featuring special guests Die Mannequin as the headliners. The first 200 people to arrive at the doors of Tattoo Rock Parlour will get free passes for the triple bill show that also features openers Darlings of Chelsea and Dearly beloved. The success of the Who’s Backstage Concert series, which is set to resume later this year, and the summer LOUD Concert series have allowed this free event designed for the fans. Without the ongoing support of the Toronto’s live music revelers, the string of live shows would not have been possible – and Die Mannequin will be there to say THANK YOU to the fans with an amazing live show fueled with adrenaline infused pop-punk metal blowout.
The band, who gained lots of notoriety at the helm of multi talented lead singer and instrumentalist, Care Failure (Caroline Kawa), who shook the infrastructure of the North American music scene with her raw and powerful image. Songs like “Miss Americvnt” are one of many examples of the bold, edgy and shocking stance of Die Mannequin in music. Lead singer, Care, hails from Toronto and embarked on her musical journey at the early age of 10 when she began playing the acoustic guitar and a memorization with bands like Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr. and Nirvana. Her childhood was anything but normal and infused with an equal measure of music and personal turmoil. Luckily, this all transpired into what is only to become a bigger and better music career and at the helm of EMI Music who discovered Failure when she was 17.
Die Mannequin studio albums Fino + Bleed (2009), Unicorn Steak (2007) and How to Kill (2006 EP) resulted in part from collaboration with MSTRKRFT, Ian D’Sa, and Jesse F. Keeler. The band have also toured and shared the stage with music giants like Deftones, Sum 41, Buckcherry, Finger Eleven, Geddy Lee, and Guns ‘n Roses. Check them out at Tattoo Rock Parlour this Friday, details are as follows:
Hyacinth Group Inc. is a multifaceted event management company that has hosted some of the most chic and exciting events in Toronto and known for putting on the most electrifying and entertaining parties the city has seen. Between the city’s hottest DJ’s, the settings of Toronto’s hottest clubs, and the ever-present “red carpet”, it’s hard to resist a party by Hy Events! From red carpet galas to hip hop concerts, Hyacinth Group Inc. has produced many events at prominent nightclub venues.
Tattoo Rock Parlour is a spacious and edgy dual level space that will amuse the senses of even the most bona fide rock star with music ranging from Alternative, Rock, Classic Rock and Punk Rock. The venue comes courtesy of a joint venture between the city’s leading entertainment aficionados, INK’s Charles Khabouth, (www.ink-00.com) and Liberty Entertainment Group’s Nick Di Donato (www.libertygroup.com).