Selected New Releases February 3, 2017

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We kick off this week’s releases with Almanach from Cap-Chat, QC’s Patrice Michaud. It debuted at #3 in the iTunes chart and is essentially a pop album with some rock and singer-songwriter flavours in the mix. It’s a nifty little album.

For blues-rock lovers, Matt Minglewood is the man. The native of Glace Bay, NS releases the fine work, Fly Like Desperados.

Edmonton’s Peter Sagar, recording under the moniker Homeshake, contributes alternative disc Fresh Air. He is now based in Montreal.

Ottawa’s Her Harbour may oscillate between soloist Gabrielle Giguere and a band but new album Go Gently into the Night settles on a relaxed, sparsely arranged folk album.

Big Wreck needs no introduction. The acclaimed rock band debuts at #2 on iTunes with Grace Street.

How about giving Montreal gridlock a dose of grit rock from local band Le Trouble. But be careful. The new album may lead to Making Matters Worse.

How about that JUNO Award winner Rose Cousins? The Halifax folk artist is back with a very good album as usual—Natural Conclusion.

Kitchener-Waterloo group Courage My Love launches album Synesthesia which should impress fans of Crystalyne and Hedley.

Last but not least is our favourite album of 2017 to date: Young Mopes from Cranbrook, BC’s Louise Burns. It’s guitar-oriented new wave with some synth touches and reminds us that she stands as one of Canada’s most gifted recording artists. A wonderful album.

2017: The Year of the Automat and More

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Automat will be releasing its second LP on January 27, 2017, entitled Pandora. While the Quebec City band’s first album in 2012 was a pop-rock affair, Pandora shifts more into pure pop territory. With catchy melodies, pleasant vocals, and very addictive beats, it is already one of the standout releases of the year. The group has opened for Carly Rae Jepsen and had one of its songs selected by the Canadian Olympic Committee for the London 2012 Olympic Games.

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Other confirmed album releases in early 2017 are works from The Katherines, USSAustra (see a rejected album cover pictured above), Japandroids, Alejandra Ribera, Le Trouble, Courage My Love, Louise Burns, Big Wreck, Mother Mother, Joel Plaskett & Bill Plaskett, and Nelly Furtado. Arcade Fire, Kiesza, Voivod, and Shania Twain are rumoured to be releasing new albums or at least new music in 2017. On Christmas Day, thanking her fans for supporting her during her two-year battle with Lyme disease, Avril Lavigne stated in a message that she intends to release a new album in 2017.

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Earlier in December, Automat released a gorgeous music video for track “Mea Culpa” off the Pandora album. It has lots of amazing landscape shots filmed in Iceland. We have embedded the MV below.

Ice Conduit to the 2015 JUNOs: Rock Album of the Year Nominees

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The nominees for Rock Album of the Year are chosen by a 50/50 combo of sales and voting by the judges. CARAS members will now vote for the winner.

Although none of the nominated albums has as yet reached gold sales status, four of the five peaked within the Top 10 on the weekly Billboard Canadian Albums Chart.

Hamilton’s Arkells won two JUNOs previously. The band has not yet been awarded with any gold/platinum certification. Track “Come to Light” off album High Noon became the group’s only charting single, spending two weeks on the Billboard Canadian Hot 100 and reaching a peak position of #81. The song was the 4th biggest from a homegrown artist on Canadian rock radio through 2014. The album achieved a Top 10 weekly Billboard Canadian Albums placement. Arkells will be performing at the JUNOs this year before a hometown crowd.

Big Wreck is a multiplatinum rock band that has not yet won a JUNO award. The group has landed a pair of songs on the Billboard Canadian Hot 100. Ghosts made the weekly Billboard Canadian Albums Top 10. The album’s title-track was one of the 40 biggest songs of the year on rock radio.

Montreal’s Sam Roberts is a favourite at the JUNOs winning six awards to date. He has scored one platinum and three gold albums. From album Lo-Fantasy, a #3 Billboard Album, “We’re All In This Together” spent 17 weeks on the Hot 100, peaking at #70 and was the top Canadian song of the year on rock radio. “Human Heat” also from the album was the #2 CanCon entry. The Sam Roberts Band was the top homegrown artist of the year on the radio format.

The Glorious Sons hail from Kingston, Ontario and did well in 2014. The group was the second top Canadian artist of the year on rock radio. Track “White Noise” from album The Union was the 3rd biggest CanCon entry of the year on the radio format.

Between Illness and Migration from Your Favourite Enemies debuted at #6 on the Billboard Albums chart after peaking at #2 on iTunes. Based in Montreal, the band formed just east of there in Drummondville and has toured globally.

The JUNOs may want to award Arkells before the hometown crowd, though the band has already won a pair of awards. They may also want to finally acknowledge the brilliance of Big Wreck and give the band a JUNO which many feel is overdue. It is likely, however, that the JUNOs will stand their ground and honour the Sam Roberts Band as they usually do. Sam Roberts is very adept at combining both the progressive and roots elements of rock which is appealing to CARAS members as it has been at rock radio. On the other hand, The Glorious Sons and Your Favourite Enemies, as newer artists, have momentum on their side, something that is not uncommonly rewarded. The winner is anybody’s guess at this point.

Ghosts Have Caused a Big Wreck

Big Wreck - GhostsBig Wreck is a multiplatinum, Hot 100 charting group from Toronto. Ghosts is the JUNO-nominated band’s fourth album. Unlike many of the generic rock bands of today, Big Wreck has crafted its own signature sound with posh vocals, wood-splitting guitars, and dynamic sonic sweeps. Frontman Ian Thornley co-produced the new album with Eric Ratz who previously lent his talents to Billy Talent and Monster Truck. Anthemic opener “A Place To Call Home” sets things up nicely. You will hear some excellent writing here, most notably on tracks “I Digress”, “Hey Mama”, “Off and Running”, and of course the lead single and title-track. The album contains one cover – Tom Robinson’s “War Baby”, a British Top 10 hit from 1983. While good rock albums succeed in pumping up the listener, Ghosts has an additional benefit in that it palliates at the same time. We feel as if we’re escaping the bitter aggravation of a cold winter under the luxury of a Chinook arch.  iTunes

Ice Conduit to the 2013 JUNOs: ROCK ALBUM Nominees

 Below are the five best rock albums of last year, nominated for the JUNO for Rock Album of the Year.  Which one is your favourite?

Albatross by Big Wreck

Big Wreck - AlbatrossThis band, led by the genius of Toronto’s Ian Thornley who pulled a 180 after a run at a solo career, has released its first album in over a decade. Their 1997 debut effort, In Loving Memory of, mined its way into double-platinum certification. This, their third, has secured for the crew its first JUNO nomination. The music is like a diesel-powered snowblower ploughing through the snow and transforms at times into a melodic ice-dancing Zamboni. Albatross peaked at #5 on the Billboard Albums chart, won two CASBY awards, and spawned two hit singles, the title track and “Wolves”. It gets your heart pumping, adrenaline flowing, and energizes you enough to clear snow from a football field in Quebec City in the time it takes it to dissolve on a Vancouver street corner.

Albatross on iTunes     Big Wreck’s Website 

Dead Silence by Billy Talent

Billy Talent - Dead SilenceThis Mississauga band has already brought dead silence to critics with seven JUNO awards, three multi-platinum albums, and over a million thumbs up on Facebook, tucked under their punkabilly belts. Though internet trolls may beg to differ, in the Great White North, Billy is not the name of a goat, at least not since 2003 when the band’s success burgeoned. Two cuts off the disc, “Viking Death March” and “Surprise Surprise” did just what they were intended to do: march up the Canadian Hot 100. But those of us who recognize talent, were not surprised at all. This was their first album not to be graced by a roman numeral, and they seemed to hit their stride on this release, creating a perfect blend of super potent espresso that moshes into the pit of the heart and gets you pumped up ready to tackle every sociopolitical problem the world dishes out.

Dead Silence on iTunes     Billy Talent’s Website

Clockwork Angels by Rush

Rush - Clockwork AngelsThe trio from Toronto has been inducted into the Music Hall of Fame, five of their songs have made the Songwriters Hall of Fame, they’ve won eight JUNOs of 43 nominations, and, last year, they released their 19th studio album. This concept album is about a man struggling to follow his dreams in a world of anarchists, pirates, and his arch nemesis Watchmaker. The rock is more progressive than the band’s last release though not as much as their quadruple platinum album Moving Pictures. While their sound has bounced around with different styles over the years, the centerpiece of Rush’s music has always been Neil Peart’s dazzlingly complex rock drumming. The music, as a whole, on Clockwork Angels is highly detailed and dynamic which makes it one of their most exciting works in a while.

Clockwork Angels on iTunes     Rush’s Website

The Sheepdogs by The Sheepdogs

The Sheepdogs - Self-TitledThis band from Saskatoon that plays early 1970s style won three JUNO awards last year, and this is their 4th studio album. It has been certified gold. The Sheepdogs’ style has been dubbed “boogie rock”, the kind of stuff that got played off dashboard mounted 8-track tape decks by dudes in pickup trucks wearing jean jackets, metal rimmed glasses, hair below the ear lobes, and mood rings. There is an organic and wholesome quality to the music giving it a more universal appeal. The band is not attempting to formulate a statement; they are letting it happen. As the first track suggests, this is an album to play when in laid back mode as if making some moves at the roller arena or pinball arcade.

The Sheepdogs on iTunes     The Sheepdogs’ Website

Now For Plan A by The Tragically Hip

Tragically Hip - Now For Plan AThis Kingston, Ontario band has a pair of diamond-certified albums, something that none of these other nominated groups can boast. They have also won the most JUNOs of the bunch, with 13. They have a star on the Walk of Fame and have been inducted into the Music Hall of Fame. Now For Plan A, The Tragically Hip’s 13th album, was certified gold, proving the band is still … hip, and spawned the hit single “In Transformation”. A touch of psychedelics underscores their characteristic grunge sound and Gord Sinclair’s usual twangy vocals, making us feel we have hitched a ride within a rock band’s garage hitting the streets in an ultraviolet repo-man Chevy Malibu with something mysterious in the trunk.

Now for Plan A on iTunes     The Tragically Hip’s Website

Canadian Music Blog’s Top 15 Album Faves of 2012

Carly Rae Jepsen - CuriosityIt is rare to find an honest year-end “best” album list. There are vested interests and kickbacks involved in those published by both online and print media. Individual people tend to be biased in favour of certain genres of music, musical instruments used, or types of artists (e.g. bands over solo artists) rendering their lists narrow. Blogs tend to discriminate against albums from popular artists because they use these lists to promote the obscure ones rather than simply state a true list of their favourites.  In compiling our list, we did not care about the genre or style of music or the relative popularity of the artist. We simply listened to all 700 or so of the Canadian albums that were released in 2012. If the album held our attention throughout, and we found ourselves enjoying song after song, we shortlisted it. At the end of the year, we listened to the shortlisted albums several times and ranked them. Below is a list of the top 15 albums from the list, our 15 favourite Canadian albums of 2012.

What About EPs?

It is difficult to compare an EP to an LP as it contains only 3 to 6 songs. (An EP is considered a work that lasts a maximum length 25 minutes). We are thus not including EPs in this list. We would like to state, however, that of all Canadian EPs released in 2012, our favourite was Carly Rae Jepsen’s Curiosity.

#15. Albatross by Big Wreck

Big Wreck - AlbatrossLike any genre of music, heavy metal can be enjoyable provided the front man can actually sing and the musical composition is inspired. Ian Thornley and Big Wreck deliver on both counts in the Canadian-American hybrid band’s first album in 11 years. This album gets your heart pumping, adrenaline flowing, and energizes you enough to clear snow from a football field in Quebec City in the time it takes it to dissolve on a Vancouver street corner. The music is like a diesel-powered snowblower ploughing through the snow and transforms at times into a melodic ice-dancing Zamboni. Albatross peaked at #5 on the Billboard Albums chart, won 2 CASBY awards, and spawned two hit singles, the title track and “Wolves”. Just make sure that when you do your head-bangin’ you’ve got a toque on, eh.

#14. Two by Jesse Labelle

Jesse Labelle - TwoPacked chock-full of the passion and intensity that made Corey Hart and Zappacosta such a joy to listen to a generation ago, the second album from Toronto’s Jesse Labelle is a beautiful tribute to romance—both lyrically and musically—under the expert production of Thomas “Tawgs” Salter. The album opens gently with the gorgeous piano ballad “Won’t Let You Down” and then moves into hit single territory (“Heartbreak Coverup” had a run on the Hot 100). “One Last Night” pokes fun at the supposed end of days from the Mayan calendar. The exciting drum pounding in “Straight Lines” moved us, the captivating wall of sound on “Moment That We Stop” impressed us, feeling the music itself pleading in “Tell the World” inspired us, and the playful swagger of “Something to Feel” charmed us. Jesse lets loose on “Magic Words”, gets theatrical on “Kryptonite”, sweet on “Lifetimes”, and rocks out on album closer “Pause”. Simply put, there is not a weak track on Two.

#13. Red Magic by Beat Market

Beat Market - Red MagicFor those of you wondering whether Canada has more to offer in the realm of instrumental EDM (that’s electronic dance music) than deadmau5, look no further than this brand new duo from Montréal: Louis-Joseph Cliche and Maxime Bellavance who go by the name Beat Market. They released an EP earlier this year before launching their self-produced debut LP, Red Magic. Making ample use of analogue synthesizers, the album showcases a more complex and sophisticated sound than many of the other acts out there. And yes, this album just may make your foot start tapping annoying the sleepoholics in the apartment below you, and when you, yourself, hit the sack with these vibes in your head, dreams of hangin’ at a video game arcade in Tokyo with some bubble tea in hand may just happen. Red Magic is the perfect party album and no doubt one of the strongest releases of the year in any musical genre, a very impressive piece of work.

#12. Tell the World by Kristina Maria

Kristina Maria - Tell the WorldDo tell the world that Kristina Maria is an exceptional singer, so much so in fact that she brought Sony Music Senior Vice President Vito Luprano, a key figure behind Celine Dion’s rise to superstardom, out of retirement. After CRMA nominations, SOCAN awards, a feature on CBC’s The National, and 3 gold hit singles (“Let’s Play” was the 64th biggest song of 2011), she released her debut LP, Tell the World, which has thus far spawned an additional 2 charting singles. This fantastic dance pop album from the Ottawa native is jam-packed with instant classics from the beautiful power ballad “It’s All Games” to the bright lights and fun of “Up and Up” and the ground-shaking, sky-scraping anthem, “We Belong Together”.

#11. Le Treizieme Etage by Louis-Jean Cormier

Louis-Jean Cormier - Le Treizieme Etage“And now for something completely different,” our 11th favourite Canadian album of 2012 is the first solo release from Louis-Jean Cormier, front man of Polaris Prize winning indie band from Montréal, Karkwa. Le treizieme etage is melancholy, reflective, introspective, and at times psychedelic, centered on acoustic guitar with some electric jolts and electronic ambiance to make the listener feel as if he is waddling through dust on the dark side of the moon. Of all artists, the album reminds us, believe it or not, of Radiohead, not in sound waveforms but in the mood it elicits. Cormier’s singing style of half-whispered determined calm is a perfect match for the soft strums of the guitar that seem to come at you as if from the no-zone space of the thirteenth floor. This is a stunning piece of work.

#10. Voyageur by Kathleen Edwards

Kathleen Edwards VoyageurFive JUNO nominations for this Ottawan and counting. Like Ron Sexsmith, singer-songwriter Kathleen Edwards likes to combine musical genres that do not fit into any of the radio formats of the current time. The album is a voyage to a world where folk, country, and rock collide and combine. The result is a sound that has a universal appeal. Although the album did not contribute any hit singles, it is a joy to listen to from the percolating opener “Empty Threat”, to “Change the Sheets”, which she performed on American chat show Late Night with David Letterman, to the concluding haunts of “Middle of the Road”. The album itself, her fourth, made it to #2 on the Billboard Album chart, her highest chart peak to date.

#9. Self by Stef Lang

Stef Lang - SelfAfter an EP earlier this year (Fighting Mirrors) that contained radio hit “Paper Doll”, Stef Lang, who comes from the town that invented nanaimo bars (Ladysmith, BC), reflected on what was to be her next move besides being featured in two tracks off Delerium’s album Music Box Opera. She decided not to opt for a mainstream radio style preferring to craft the kind of music that met with her own taste. The result was Self, her second LP. Talk about a true independent trooper, Stef wrote, played, recorded, engineered and produced the album all by herself. If commercial tunes are like slices of bread, Self is like a gourmet sandwich. She has taken the basic elements and created something even more wholesome and savoury. The album opens with Stef on her signature blood-stained acoustic guitar in “Brick Wall” and the music grows into a graceful current of subtle, melancholy R&B accented with some perky funk and urban rhythms, particularly in such beautiful tracks as “Castle in the Cloud”, “For a Minute There”, and “DNA”.

#8. Travelling Love by Elisapie

Elisapie - Travelling LoveHailing from the remote town of Salluit in northern Quebec, JUNO-award winning, trilingual Elisapie released her sophomore work this year, Travelling Love, a folky pop/rock effort. It opens with a tour de force pulsating electro-pop ice-breaker, “The Beat”, followed by fabulous “The Love You Gave”. The disc includes “It’s All Your Fault”, a tribute to Leonard Cohen of whom Elisapie is a huge admirer. Elisapie delivers a hauntingly gorgeous ballad about her hometown that makes you yearn to fly up there. And if the album closer fails to rouse your spirits, then you ought to get them checked by your local soul doctor. Of its many strengths, one of the biggest reasons why this is such a stunning album is that, on all levels, the music on Travelling Love is unpredictable. You anticipate things will go one way, and they take an unexpected turn to something more exciting, all carried by a sweet voice and a perfectly balanced wall of sound.

#7. MA by Ariane Moffatt

Ariane Moffatt - MAEvery album that Ariane Moffatt has released has nabbed the Felix for pop/rock album of the year, moreover one of them won a JUNO award. With several gold and platinum certifications under her belt, she decided to release a bilingual album, MA. Being a fan of Metric, she went for an electronic rock sound on this one with such sweeping electronic landscapes combined with the original beats of the likes of Utada Hikaru. But all in all it showcases the unique, creative genius of Ariane Moffatt. MA shot up to #2 on the Billboard Canadian Albums chart after lead single “Mon Corps” smoked up the charts in Quebec. CBC’s Q Radio named this as one of the 20 best albums in the world of 2012. We heartily agree.

#6. It’s Easy If You Try by Len

Len - It's Easy If You TryToronto’s Len (siblings Marc and Sharon Costanzo) is best known for its international hit “Steal My Sunshine” back in 1999 and have been called one-hit wonders. Hey, there’s nothing wrong with that; Pink Floyd were one-hit wonders … well, almost (I think “Money” made the Top 40). Len received 3 JUNO nominations, one of them being for Best Alternative Album. In 2012, they released brand new album It’s Easy If You Try. This is an incredibly good pop album that is full of summertime fun; in fact, we think track “Gonna Take Some Time” easily rivals their big hit as an instant classic. This is definitely the kind of album you’d find playing at Austin Powers’ pad in swinging London. With more surprises and pop hooks than imaginable, this album is simply a blast.

#5. Bells & Whistles by Steph MacPherson

Steph Macpherson - Bells and WhistlesSteph is a Canadian whose roots lie in the land of the kiwi. Her style could perhaps be described as an added touch of Loreena McKennitt to Kathleen Edwards. This year she released her debut LP Bells & Whistles under Cordova Bay Records capturing the essence of her beautiful, crisp, clear voice over gorgeous piano and guitar melodies of both rousing joy and soothing reflection. The album commences with the title track that warns us there are such potholes along life’s journey that we could see all the way to China through the asphalt. If you finally make it past that song after hitting the replay button multiple times, you will find little gems along the way to the album concluder, “Open Book”, a breathtaking piano ballad that will leave you mesmerized.

#4. 20/20 by Saga

207763EREP_SAGA-20-20_Stecktasche_RZ.inddProgressive rock is still going strong in the Great White North, yet it is really the veterans of the genre who can’t be beat. JUNO-winning, platinum-selling Saga has continued to make records for 35 years! The sophisticated sound of classics “Wind Him Up” and “On the Loose” of yesteryear won devoted followers all the way over in Germany; in fact, 2012’s 20/20, one of the best albums the band has ever recorded, entered the charts at #13 in that country. Saga is the greatest contribution to Canadian culture that Oakville, Ontario has ever made. Ten glorious tracks of brilliant song writing, pulsating keyboards, mid-pitched reverberating electric guitars, base quakes, and theatrical vocals are everything we could ask for.

#3. TRST by Trust

Trust - TrstToronto band Austra’s Maya Postepski met Robert Alfons in 2009, and they experienced musical chemistry. They began writing songs and formed the band Trust the following year. EP Candy Walls was released in 2011 and generated enough excitement to draw the interest of Arts & Crafts Records who released the band’s debut LP in February 2012, a work entitled TRST. Their sound is dark and atmospheric, dreamy and hypnotic, sombre and intense, with sparkles of space dust from some eerie planet on a collision course with Earth. This is gothic electronic rock at its very best with synth grunts, blips, and pulses, and melodies taking on unexpected twists and turns on a joy ride to the edge of the unknown. It is the sort of record you would hear playing at a trendy clothing shop on Robson Street in Vancouver where customers with spiked hair sift through a rack of rayon shirts with metal clasps. Listening to it gives the feeling of entering a castle complete with torches and neon lights, a dungeon containing a flying saucer, and a secret chamber occupied by ghosts and a stargate.

#2. Free Dimensional by Diamond Rings

Diamond Rings - Free DimensionalDiamond Rings is a solo artist from Toronto named John O’Regan. His debut album earned him a JUNO nomination for New Artist of the Year and enabled him to open for Robyn. For his second album, he recruited producer Damian Taylor who has worked with Bjork and The Killers. For those of you who grew up in the early 80s and are pining for some new music that echoes those new wave synths of Blancmange, Simple Minds, and The Spoons, look no further than Free Dimensional. “I’m Just Me” is the first single, the music video showcasing his glittery space cadet wardrobe, square, diamond-themed shades, Bowie haircut, dry ice, green laser beams, and black lights. But his flashy stage persona and signature baritone voice is not all that is to be admired. The music on this album is a big move forward from his last work; in fact, it is so good, we found only one Canadian album released in 2012 that we liked better. Oh, yes, and we’re hoping he’ll do “Put Me On” as a duet with LIGHTS on keytar.

#1. Shut Up and Dance by Victoria Duffield

Victoria Duffield - Shut Up and Dance Album CoverAbbotsford, British Columbia’s Victoria Duffield, A+ student, actor, professional dancer, singer, and composer has more talent in her 17-year-old frame than most people accumulate in a lifetime. Single “Shut Up and Dance”, 49th biggest song of the year and platinum certified, heralded an album bearing the same name spawning an additional two Top 40 singles (so far) and includes a collaboration with Australian heartthrob Cody Simpson. The album is short: eight tracks with a run time of 28 minutes, most being co-written with hit-maker Ryan Stewart (Carly Rae Jepsen, Suzie McNeil). All tracks on this gem succeed to levels rivalling anything Michael Jackson, Britney Spears, or The Pet Shop Boys have concocted in their respective terms of reign over the airwaves. It has taken a long time for Canadian music to branch out into the dance genre, and this has finally been perfected on such a brilliant work as this. Moreover, big on melody and sophistication, it remains purified from the watering down urban, repetitive, and oversimplified styles that have saturated the market south of the border, coming at them and the rest of the world like a breath of fresh air.  We are not surprised at all that Victoria Duffield topped the Billboard Year-End Emerging Canadian Artists Chart.

As 2012 was the year that saw malicious contempt towards the young, we are pleased that our choice happens to counter this. The Canadian Music Blog is proud to declare Victoria Duffield’s Shut Up and Dance as 2012’s Album of the Year.

CRJ is Rocketing Forward in the USA

Carly Rae Jepsen’s United States radio tour is paying off.  “Call Me Maybe” (which is back at #1 in Canada this week – its 3rd week at the top spot) has debuted on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 within the Top 40!  She has the 38th biggest song in that country this week.

While Carly is taking the U.S. by storm, her Canadian sister Alyssa Reid is the latest craze in Britain.  “Alone Again” (her reworking of Heart’s classic “Alone”) is at its 5th week in the U.K. Top 20.  It is the most successful Canadian single so far this year in Britain, having peaked at #2 on the charts there.

Fans of Celtic / new age music are no doubt delighted at Loreena McKennitt’s latest release, a live album of some of her classics, called Troubadours On The Rhine.  Johnny Reid, Ian Thornley’s Big Wreck, and Gord Bamford have new releases out in just a couple of days.

With all the tours going on and about to begin, we are pleased to announce that LIGHTS will be touring the land down under for the very first time.  Her album Siberia released last year is up for JUNO pop album of the year, and she will now be showcasing her dazzling electronic rock sound live in Australia.  Perhaps she can bring a little Canadian snow with her.