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Tag: Drake Underground

Maria Taylor @ Drake Underground

. : : February 9th, 2014 : : . I’ve seen every Maria Taylor show performed in Toronto for the last seven years. So, although I haven’t taped a proper live show for almost a year due to gear malfunctions (the mic people blame the recorder, the recorder people blame the mics, and both will charge me an arm and a leg to verify their claims), I was compelled to break the unfortunate streak and had back out to the beautiful Drake Hotel (who, by the way, are celebrating ten years of awesome-iversary!) with minimal equipment. I wasn’t sure how it would turn out. I’ve only…

The Rest @ Drake Underground

One late April afternoon, quite out of the blue, Hamilton’s indie darlings The Rest announced that they would be parting ways as a band. There was none of the drama or theatrics that all too often mars the legacy of a great band; no drug busts or burgeoning solo careers, no assault arrests or overdoses, no egos or split ideologies. In fact, after several incidents that would have spelled the demise of other bands, including the tragic death of friend and producer Dan Achen, and the loss of a hard drive containing near completed recordings of tracks that would later be recovered and…

Megan Bonnell @ Drake Underground

In recent weeks, I’ve had trouble deciding whether I should be posting recordings from oldest to newest, and catch up on my backlogs, or jump right to recent recordings so they’re online while still fresh, before they become a backlog themselves. Then, quite accidentally, I stumbled on a way to do both simultaneously. Having seen so, so many bands, it’s important for me to write about and post the recording for an artist almost immediately, while the experience is fresh. If left too long, the memory (especially if it’s a band I’m not familiar with prior to the performance) is…

Wakey!Wakey! @ Drake Underground

. : : February 20th, 2013 : : . I got off work at 6 — still hours before the doors were set to open for Wakey!Wakey!‘s set, but not enough time to bother going home first — so to the Drake Underground I went. I killed time at the local pizza place, but when I headed into the venue shortly after the door time, I was stopped by security. Unusual for the friendly always-open-door Drake; more unusual, even though doors were scheduled to be opened, they wouldn’t be letting anybody for another half of an hour. Too embarrassed to go back into…

Terra Lightfoot @ Drake Underground

. : : October 30th, 2011 : : . I spent much of Terra Lightfoot‘s set at the Drake Underground wondering why she seemed so familiar to me. I’m pretty sure it didn’t occur to me until later that she was Julie Fader‘s guitarist at a show I’d seen her opening for Kathleen Edwards at the Dakota Tavern a year or two earlier. Julie Fader’s set was, perhaps somewhat infamously, reviewed somewhat poorly, but luckily, Terra’s set was a significantly more engaging. The set especially picked up in the second half of the evening, during set highlight of the evening, the as-of-yet unreleased Never Will. The song has got a great…

Lou Canon @ Drake Underground

. : : October 23rd, 2011 : : . Over the last few months, I’ve amassed quite a few recordings. Most of them are already up here, and perhaps you’ve listened to a few? But sometime last fall, when great concerts were coming fast and furious, and I was seeing almost a dozen bands a week, I sort of fell behind a bit. I’ve never been able to quite catch up, but I think, some ten odd months later, it’s time to start clearing out the back log. So, for the next few updates, I’m going to try a new format. One…

The Rest @ Drake Underground

. : : June 22nd, 2012 : : . It’s near impossible to talk about The Rest and their latest effort Seesaw, without discussing the storied history of the album. It’s been repeated ad nauseum; nary an article reviewing the album has managed to be written without contextualizing it within its colourful history. It’s become almost a trite, tired cliche that the review of the work comes secondary to a re-telling of its troubled past, which is a shame. After all, the album isn’t informed one note by the hard drive crash that all but erased it from existence. Not one song is influenced by…

Rocky Votolato @ Drake Underground

. : : May 19th, 2012 : : . Rocky Votolato, like so many other independent artists with the accumulated fan base that comes with just the right mixture of hard work and good luck, took to Kickstarter to campaign for funding for his album, Television of Saints. The album, his eighth solo effort I believe, was his first following the closing of his contract with Seattle indie label juggernauts, Barsuk Records. It was Barsuk Records that re-introduced me to Rocky (I was introduced to his as an opener a couple of years earlier. The only thing that stands out about the performance…

Pearl and the Beard @ Drake Underground

. : : May 10th, 2012 : : . I’ve long admired Wesley Verhoeve‘s business model for his New York City-based record label, Family Records. One of my favourite practices is a process called cross-pollination. As a fan of the label’s Wakey!Wakey!, I purchased some of their older, hard-to-get (and now sold out, out of production) albums from their website. Along with instantaneous download to the album while waiting for the postman to do his duty was a link to a digital mix CD, showcasing a song or two of each of the label’s top talents. If I remember correctly, the first song on that…

Andrew Cole @ Drake Underground

. : : March 9th, 2012 : : . This is the blog entry I’ve been dreading writing for some time (and perhaps the reason for it’s delay). As I’ve mentioned in a previous post, my lower back problem was causing me a bit of pain, and the unique stage set-up for Andrew Cole and Friends at the Drake Underground meant drastically decreased sight lines from my usual taping position. Prior to the evening in question, I couldn’t tell Andrew Cole from a hole in the wall. So, resigned from the lack of invested interest and physical limitations, I decided to take my seat on the…