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Month: March 2011

Matt Pond PA @ Drake Underground

    . : : March 23rd, 2011 : : . With the onset of the Junofest the following night, Matt Pond‘s set Wednesday evening, opening for Rocky Votolato at the Drake Underground, almost slipped through the cracks. As you might have been able to tell from the last update, things got really busy, really quickly. Even my Rocky Votolato blog post felt really phoned-in and half-assed. I can’t promise much more from this one, but I’ll give’r a go. Matt Pond took the stage with a very stripped down band — just himself, Chris Hansen on lead guitar, and a gentleman whose name I didn’t catch on the cello.…

Junofest 2011 @ [Various Venues]

Around this time last year, I was mostly ambivalent about Canadian music. That’s not to say there weren’t Canadian bands I enjoyed, but it extended only so far. Most of my interest was focused on north-west bands, primarily Seattle and Portland-area bands on the great Barsuk Records. The much-blogged about NXNE showcase set last year introduced me to handfuls of great local Canadian talent, who has in turn by pursuing them, introduced me to even more. At last year’s Junos kick-off party, which I was lucky enough to win a guest list spot to (to see Kathleen Edwards perform a unique solo set), I was…

Rocky Votolato @ Drake Underground

. : : March 23rd, 2011 : : . 50-weeks and 80-blog posts ago, I started blog.haterhigh.com. It was after I’d just gotten home from my first visit to the Drake Underground, a venue that quickly stole my heart and enticed me back to see over a dozen bands over the last year. But on that evening in April 2010, it was my favourite singer-songwriter Rocky Votolato who brought me out. He was touring on the back of his latest album, True Devotion, and his tour has had him return to the Drake twice more since. Luckily, I was able to capture all three of the sets,…

Steve Singh @ Drake Underground

. : : March 20th, 2011 : : . The experience of what to watch when going to a concert has changed dramatically for me over the years. When I was young, I did what I suspect most people do — eyes stuck unwaveringly on the face of the front man / singer. When I started learning guitar, my eyes started to gravitate downwards. I would watch the hands form chords and transition from fret to fret, and barely look at the singer’s face at all. When I took up a bit of bass and got interested in drumming, my glances became…

Danny Michel @ Drake Underground

. : : March 20th, 2011 : : . Katie likes to tease me for getting to concerts ridiculously early. Danny Michel‘s performance for the David Suzuki Foundation was only the third show we’ve been to together, but she’s learned quickly about my idiosyncrasies. She’s not wrong. I find getting to concerts late really stressful. I don’t know if it’s OCD, or just the nervous taper in me, but I get really uptight when running late. So imagine what I was like, rushing from an unexpected last-minute late night at work. I started setting up my gear on the subway, running several feet of wire under…

Telekinesis @ Sonic Boom / Horseshoe Tavern

. : : March 6th, 2011 : : . Between songs at the Horsehoe Tavern, Telekinesis front man and brain child Michel Benjamin Lerner asks the crowd if they have any questions. “Why are you guys so amazing?”, one gentleman piped up from the back. Lerner bashfully shrugged off the compliment, but touring guitarist Cody Votolato interjected with “We try our hardest, maybe that’s why it appears that way. Really hard.” And that would be an extremely difficult assessment to argue. The stripped-down, off-the-cuff set at Sonic Boom records earlier in the evening was definitely more laid back, but in a way that reflected the intimacy of the environment. But for…