Tag Archives: Jenny

Amazing Talent @ Canadian Music Week 2013

In case you haven’t heard, Canadian Music Week is just around the corner, with over 1,000 musicians performing at 60 venues music from March 19 – 24 in Toronto.

The representation across the country (and from outside Canada) is phenomenal and Calgary is no exception. We’re super proud that we’ve had the privilege of working with many of these bands, including 5 of our past Indie403 Featured Artists:

Go for the EyesJennyJung PeopleKing DylanSeptembryo

We’ve also had the pleasure to listen and review albums from many CMW bands:

Cousins (A Palm At The End Of The Mind)Diemonds (The Bad Pack)Fur Eel (Perhaps Another Time & Elephant Summer)Jennah Barry (Young Men)Kaptur (Thousands)Of Gentlemen & Cowards (Warminster), King Dylan (Dinosaurs On Broadway), Rain Over St. Ambrose (Overton Window)Rend (No Lines)Septembryo (The Dreambuilder)Short of Able (The Last One’s Gone), The North Lakes (Grand Prix)Wind Up Radio Sessions (Bird Eyes).

And of course whenever they played in Calgary, we’ve given the following CMW bands a shout-out: Bend Sinister, Diemonds, Double Fuzz, Fur Eel, Go for the Eyes, Hunger Hush, Jenny, JJ Shiplett, Jung People, King Dylan, Kingdom of Few, Miesha And The Spanks, Peer Support, Rend, Rockets and Dinosaurs, Septembryo & The Suppliers.

Congrats to all and have an awesome Festival!

Indie403 - Canadian Music Week

Robot Workers – “Robot Workers”

Robots are created to make life easier. They do tough jobs, build fancy things and are efficient and complicated machines, all programmed and built by their ingenious creators. With their debut self-titled album, Calgary’s Robot Workers show they were programmed with the ability to make sweet music and do so with the natural and effortless skills robots are known for.

The album kicks off with the bouncy “Sinister”, immediately creating a really groovy, almost reggae feel with emphasis on the upbeats and a completely catchy melody. This is a track to get stuck in your head and dance to later — and actually, this can be said about the whole album. There isn’t a song on here that won’t make you move, whether you dance like a Rastafarian or go nuts like a ’90s headbanger. This is one of the best features of the album, the ability to create universal dance appeal without sacrificing good music.

A cool thing about this album is the number of long instrumentals, like those in “Cowboy Breakdown” and “Madness of the Dream”, which sometimes sound like natural jam sessions and is actually a bit hard to do. It takes a lot of talent, chemistry and technical knowledge to be able to do this, especially in the fun-sounding way Robot Workers does. They feel authentic, raw and a bit more organic than their cold robot exteriors might have us believe.

Throughout the album Robot Workers puts out great repeating riffs (like in “Cowboy Breakdown” and “King of Aces”), upbeat percussion and cool, sometimes wailing vocals. They’ve got a mix of reggae, country, rock and funk, creating a ton of different sounds and a nice variety of tracks to listen to. You might think of Queens of the Stone Age, Cake, Everlast, Radiohead, and something else you can’t quite figure out; they create their own sound, and we really can’t wait to hear what they’ll come out with next.

Robot workers are a stellar up-and-coming Calgary band and this is an album you have to check out. The official release party is December 21 at Lord Nelson’s in Calgary, so check them out and make sure you grab a copy. Check them out online and on Facebook, and thank their creators for the great music these robots have been programmed to make.

Robot Workers - Robot Workers

Taylor Cochrane – “Cleaning Up”

When one of our favourite artists comes out with a new EP, we usually expect to love it. We know they’ve got talent and we know we like them, so we also know the album will be great. In the case of Taylor Cochrane and his new EP Cleaning Up, we are left very, very happy. He’s come a long way since the release of his first album, Acoustic, last year, and with a ton of development and maturity behind him he’s solidified his reputation as one of Calgary’s best artists.

Cleaning Up is a huge step for Taylor. Now with a full band behind him and rich, well-developed songwriting his music seems even more special. Acoustic was a great introduction to Taylor as a comedic wordsmith: he’s able to tell a story with clever lyrics, puns and endless double entendres, and whether he’s looking to cause laughter or tears, he can do either without much effort. Cleaning Up continues this trend of fantastic (and at times absurd) songwriting but in a more mature, rounded way. He can easily be compared to such singer-songwriters as Jack Johnson, Ben Harper or Rob Sumwalt, and with equally strong vocals and instrumentals behind him on this album, he’s on a completely equal playing field.

The five tracks are all fantastic and a great representation of Taylor’s unique songwriting and vocals. He has a great way of writing songs you can dance to. Listen to “Victoria”, for example: right away you’ll picture a choreographed dance routine featuring a pretty girl. Who knows why, but the bouncy toe-tappiness is perfect for this image. Same goes for “Simple Song”: the rhymey, bouncey nature of the song has the perfect beat for an easy airdrum. Just try to listen to these tracks without tapping to the beat — impossible!

Taylor’s biggest strength is his simplicity. Simplicity is surprisingly hard to come by: so many songwriters try so hard to be “unique” or “artsy” that their songs are impossible to listen to, but Taylor avoids this problem by writing songs that make sense. You can actually sing along to these tracks (or at least listen along — why cover up Taylor’s great voice?).

Everything Taylor does just gets better and better, and now that he’s off on a new western tour it won’t be long before he comes out with something even more exciting. If you get the chance, see him on stage. Visit his website and follow him on Facebook for more info about his tour and upcoming releases, and remember to buy his album! He’s known as one of Calgary’s best for a reason.

Taylor Cochrane - "Cleaning Up"

Rend – “No Lines”

Have you ever heard a singer whose voice completely blows you away? It might stop you in your tracks, render you speechless, or even make you cry. This sort of voice is definitely not common, so when we come across a band with a mix of insanely powerful vocals and original songwriting, we know they’re something special.Rend, an incredible new pop-rock band out of Edmonton, brings us everything we’ve been waiting for, and their debut album No Lines is one of the most mind-blowing displays of talent we’ve seen in a while. Rend’s rise has been nothing short of meteoric. After the release of No Lines in early 2012, the band quickly became known across the country for their multifaceted sound and enormous talent. The album achieved cross-Canada radio play in no time with their first single, “Hide”, and their growth since then has been even more impressive. No Lines marks the beginning of what will be an incredible journey, and every element of the album is a sign of what’s to come. No Lines is a vocal-driven adventure through music. It has almost everything: technical skill, strong instrumentals, and meaningful lyrics, not to mention truly awesome vocals that show off ridiculous range, power, and emotion. Lead singer Carol-Lynne Quinn is nothing short of remarkable, and her voice is easily one of the most powerful and impressive sounds to come out of Canada in the last decade. She can be compared to superstars likes Kelly Clarkson or Alicia Keys, but with actual songwriting talent and a Canadian flag draped across her shoulders, we’d argue she’s far superior. There are different sounds throughout the album that will appeal to fans of different genres: “Hold On” takes on more bluesy, Alicia Keys-like composition while “Pearl” and “Torn” sound very much like Lily Allen tracks. We also see rock anthems in songs like “Monster”, showing off Quinn’s vocals and the overall rock quality of the band’s sound. At times they sound like Evanescence with vocals like Amy Lee, and with comparisons to rock outfits like Led Zeppelin or Radiohead, they fit into a variety of musical tastes. “Hold On” would fit in perfectly with Zeppelin or Pink Floyd, and adding in a cover of Third Eye Blind’s “Jumper”, even those of us with a preference for ’90s music are satisfied. This entire album is fantastic. It’s partially Quinn’s vocal acrobatics that make the album stand out, but the guitar hooks, percussion, piano, and soul lead to an overall electric experience that can’t be missed. To sample the album, check out Rend’s website, YouTube, or Facebook, and definitely buy the album on iTunes. This is an album (and a band) unlike any other, and with your support and love, they’ll get to the top. Rend will blow you away: just give them a try.

Rend - "No Lines"