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TOPS – Sleeptalker

By Will Oliver, August 4th 2014 — with 1 comment

Tops - Sleeptalker

On September 2 Montral-based band TOPS will release their new album Picture You Staring via Arbutus Records. Their previous album Tender Opposites was one of my favorite albums of 2012, so it’s safe to say I have sky high expectations for the new LP.

“Sleeptalker” is the first single to be shared from Picture You Staring, and it’s a lush track that is absolute smooth sailing. There’s a sleepy nature to it, carried by the hushed vocals of singer Jane Penny.

Penny provided some insight on the song on the band’s facebook page. Find that posted below.

It’s a lovely listen, one that simply begs for you to replay. Stream it below.
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[CMJ]: TOPS @ Arlene’s Grocery (October 18, 2013)

By Will Oliver, October 21st 2013


Last year, Montreal band TOPS released one of my favorite albums of the year with the dangerously good Tender Opposites.

I kept missing them at previous CMJ’s or the scattered NYC performance here and there. So I made it a mission this time around to catch one of their performances, and it ended up being post-Arcade Fire at Arlene’s Grocery as a part of the M For Montreal showcase. Read the rest of this entry »

[music video]: TOPS – Double Vision

By Will Oliver, October 25th 2012

Regret not catching TOPS at all during CMJ, because I’ve been slowly getting into their debut album Tender Opposites, which came out earlier this year on Arbutus Records.

They released a video for “Double Vision” a song on the album that clings to nostalgia and memories of older days. It then makes sense that the video consists of home video recordings. Wish I didn’t wait so long to get into these guys.

Watch the video below.
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[music video] All The Damn Kids – The Book Stops Here

By Will Oliver, April 23rd 2010 — with 3 comments

I called All The Damn Kids a band to watch last week, and I firmly stand behind that statement. They are an exciting band from Sheffield who you should expect to hear more on frm me in the immediate future.

For now, check out their music video for “The Book Stops Here”. It is pretty much a nod to the legendary Albert Lamorisse short film Le Ballon Rouge. It is well shot, and the video certainly fits the mood of the song. Watch it below:

1_Single Mothers_Baby's

Canadian punk-rockers Single Mothers made one of their only CMJ stops at Baby’s All Right for Brooklynvegan’s free day party. The group broke up in 2009 but are reunited and seemingly well, based on the ferocious set that I witnessed. I wasn’t familiar with their material prior to their set, but I was quite drawn to their energy on stage, where they gave everything that they had to give.

Find some photos from their set posted below.
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1_Field Mouse_Cake Shop

New York City / Philadelphia based band Field Mouse have been around the scene for some time, but just released their debut album Hold Still Life, which Top Shelf Records released over the summer.

If you combine a 90s guitar aesthetic to some ear-pleasing synth-work, you get a wonderous mix that pleases multiple parts of your musical palette at once. Album tracks such as “Tomorrow Is Yesterday” explode live with both a delightful intensity and shimmering glow. Not a easy thing to do when you think about it, which made their sharp performance live at Cake Shop for Terrorbird’s free day party that much more impressive.

I hope to catch a full proper set from the group very soon when they return to NYC next.
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Damien Rice at The Box (October 18, 2014)

By Will Oliver, October 30th 2014

1_Damien Rice_The Box

On November 10 beloved Irish singer-songwriter Damien Rice will release his new album My Favourite Faded Fantasy. It’s a big deal, because it’s the first album that Rice has released in eight years.

Earlier this month Rice embarked on a small tour of tiny, intimate venues to serve as warm up shows for the bigger ones that will soon follow when he goes on a full national tour. This included a few stops in New York that included Warsaw and two nights at the tiny hole in the wall known as The Box. The venue fits maybe 150 people at most, so it was an exclusive, once in a lifetime sort of place to catch an artist as admired as Rice.
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