played 2 incredible pop montreal shows. here and here are some photos from the first one. if anyone took some pictures at the second one (at la tour prisme), get in touch because that room was beautiful. i wanna see ‘em.
album comes out in 4 days, and we’re playing an instore at our fave neighbourhood record store Phonopolis in mile end to celebrate at 6 pm (tues. oct 4) (FB event). our drummer works there.
June 17: Fringe Pop @ Parc Des Ameriques (corner of St-Laurent and Rachel) 8:00 or 9:00…I forget.
June 23: Suoni Per Il Popolo Festival w/ Chad Vangaalen & Nat Baldwin, Il Motore (179 Jean Talon E.)
June 24: super low-key solo or semi-solo show w/ James Irwin, Cagibi (5490 St-Laurent)
Also, not sure how much I’m supposed to say right now, but the record has found a home and will be coming out early October. It’s called Flickering Flashlight and I can’t wait for it to come out (on vinyl esp.) check out a track here.
also, dear Toronto, expect us in August.
also, did I show you this? i made a remix for Young Galaxy who are a great band and also delightful friends who just had a baby: LINK
When Vancouver band SSRIs got stuck in Thunder Bay, Ontario (my home town) for a week due to a broken tour van, they turned lemons into Northern Ontario lemonade. Here’s their reworked cover of Champs-elysées they produced with their (unwanted) spare time in honor of their depressing week where they missed several shows and no doubt lost lots of money. I’m not sure if this is just as hilarious if you aren’t from there, or at least haven’t toured through there. Anyways, I found it hilarious, and even made me a little nostalgic.
Sorry for the lack of content. It’s been a hectic month. I was in a car crash (everyone’s okay) and (perhaps too) soon after built a deck with my family on the roof of my apartment.
Another feat that was accomplished despite post-concussion headaches and rib contusions was a successful Blogotheque Takeaway Show. I’ve seen some of the footage and I can’t wait for the finished version to get online. Finally everything will be made right after that failed attempt last fall.
There are some fun fun fun shows coming up for you folks in the Montreal area.
June 25: DUCKSTOCK
First is up at a cottage in the Laurentiens, Sainte Agathe des Monts to be precise. It’s a fun little festival called Duckstock. Our shoe-gazing buddies Receivers are playing too, as well as a bunch of other bands. Full line-up and details can be found here. I think it’ll be tons of fun. You should come and camp out with us! See me with my shirt off! (Facebook event)
June 26: YOUNG GALAXY & LITTLE SCREAM & ADAM & THE AMETHYSTS
For those of you without the means to leave the city, we’re playing a celebration of Spring with the dreamy Young Galaxy and the ineffable Little Scream. Sure to be epic. It’s going down at the Belmont (4483 Boulevard Saint Laurent). (Facebook event)
June 27: Maybe something outside somewhere. Details TBA.
That’s about it. The new record is coming along slowly but surely. Maybe I’ll post some new stuff eventually. I’m going to see dear pals The Luyas tonight at the Rialto Theatre. Maybe I’ll see you there.
Thanks to everyone who came to our show at the Casa on Friday. It was fun and the World Provider were great as expected. We’re going to be playing another show June 26 in Montreal at the Belmont on St. Laurent. The details are still in the works, but I know that the wonderfully dreamy Young Galaxy will also be playing. Also maybe a special show somewhere on the 25th, but I’ll keep you posted on that.
In other news, the music of Adam & The Amethysts (including some new tracks) will be featured in a short film called Impossible, directed by Montreal’s ubertalented Vanya Rose. It’s based on a short story by Katherine Mansfield, the turn of the (20th) century modernist writer, but is set in contemporary Mile End, Montreal. Only it’s a parallel universe where everyone in Mile End is inexplicably listening to Adam & The Amethysts! In any case, it’s a nice little love story where the characters shop at all the same grocery stores as me, which is awesome. I’ll let you know when it’s released. It’s been picked up by the CBC, so you’ll have a chance to catch it on your bunny ears.
Also, it snowed a bunch in Montreal yesterday, and last night our power went out after a couple hours of sporadic green lightning (which may have been neighborhood power lines or transformers crapping out). I was convinced it was the apocalypse.
My dear sister Carly Waito is a painter based in Toronto. I would like to share some of her work with you. She’s kind of a blogdarlingalready, so why not jump on the bandwagon? Hey, I knew about her first…
And there’s a distinct possibility that you’ll be seeing a collaboration between her and myself in the coming year.
Lately she’s been painting highly realistic close-ups of tiny mineral specimens that she meticulously collects and photographs. I happen to think that they’re completely amazing. If you like pretty and curious things, you’ll also want to check out her blog.
You really gotta hand it to this 22 year old MC who risked–and in my opinion, transcended–dorkdom and made this unabashedly sentimental hip-hop homage to his hometown (and mine) Thunder Bay, Ontario. Dorky maybe, but the references to Finnish pancakes, Labatt Crystal, and Terry Fox give me goosebumps–and incidentally I’m not the only one. As of posting this the video has over 210,000 hits on YouTube (almost twice Thunder Bay’s population), and the genuine hometown pride evinced by the YouTube comments makes my eyes moist. I really hope that they start playing this on MuchMusic. It’s definitely slick enough, and Thunder Bay could use the cultural moral boost. Now who’s going to mash this up with Amethyst Amulet?
Whoa, sorry I had been absent from this thing for the past month and a bit. I’ve been deeply entrenched in work on the record and intensive French class. Since I’ve been absent from the internet, I’ve also been to Thunder Bay for the holidays. As always it was a relaxing and regenerative experience. My sister Carly and I took a walk near our old neighborhood and these are some photos that she took. There are more of these and some repeats on her blog. The last one of Carly was taken by me. Click to enlarge.
Another highlight of visiting Thunder Bay was performing at a house concert with my current favorite Thunder Bay band The Ukeladies. They’re a synth and ukulele duo that play sad, sweet, and strange pop music. They don’t have a lot of recordings yet, but they do have at least one song on their Myspace page, which has been written up on Said the Gramophone. Here’s a video of them performing at the house party:
Back in October fellow Thunder Bay ex-pat Dave Shaw and I conducted a Theremin-building workshop at Articule gallery in Montreal in association with Pop Montreal’s Symposium. It was fun! Best of all, everyone’s instrument worked in the end (about a dozen of them). Well, almost all of them worked. Jenny’s made insane evil droning sounds that weren’t quite right, but cool anyway.
For the workshop we used the Harrison Instruments Minimum Theremin Kit. I really recommend this kit if you have an interest in building a Theremin but don’t have tons of experience with electronics, or if you do and just want a quick and easy project. It only has one antenna for pitch (no volume antenna), but aside from that limitation, it actually sounds amazing and has a decent range, depending on what you use for your antenna. Everyone in the workshop made their own custom enclosure and antenna for their Theremin circuit, which made it really fun. There were cigar box Theremins, film canister Theremins, spoon antennas, and Dave built his into a wireless router and actually used the antennas of the router for the instrument’s pitch control!
Here are some photos from the event.
Builders hard at work
Sean's cigar box and standing spoon Theremin
My finished Theremin in sleek dollar store wooden box
Dave and his amazing wireless router Theremin (and matching sweater)
Ah, memories. The workshop was followed by pitchers of coke and mozzarella sticks at an all-night family restaurant. Perfect.
Also, thanks to everyone who came to the show we played opening for Mew last week at Cabaret Juste Pour Rire. What a lovely crowd.
Adam & The Amethysts (this time: Rory, Rebecca, and I) are playing tomorrow at La Sala Rossa in MTL. Details in my last post. It’s going to be a total love-in of friendly awesomeness, so show up!
Solange Knowles covers Dirty Projectors – First she ostensibly gets her sister Beyonce and Jay-Z into Grizzly Bear. Now this. Somehow, every time a big hip-hop or R&B star (especially a Knowles) flirts with indie rock, which has been happening lately, my dream of one day stealing Beyonce away from Jay-Z seems slightly less absurd. [UPDATE: check out this article from August. Jay-Z on indie rock]. But seriously, Solange’s version of “Stillness is the Move” is so good and based around the same sample as Dr Dre’s xxplosive. Thank you, Pitchfork. (note: Pitchfork’s mp3 was taken down, but this one should still work). Also, if you haven’t seen it, the Dirty Projectors’ incredible original “Stillness is the Move” has a lovely video. I’ll be seeing you Montrealers at the Dirty Projectors show this Sunday at Le National with our good buddy Tuneyards. Should be epic.
In other news, my herbal detox is going well. I’ve pretty much gotten over feeling hungry all the time, but the other night I had a very impassioned dream in which I ate an entire plate of nachos. That was all that happened. Notably, the nachos had pesto on them, which is something I will have to try after this cleanse is finished.
Also, look out for an Adam & The Amethysts Montreal show or two in the coming months, because, why not?
We were offline-ish for a little while there, as the tech team was working on redesigning the website a little bit. Now in addition to the blog we have some other pages about the band for you to browse.
In other news, the new record is coming along. I’m really excited about how some of the new songs are sounding. It’s shaping up to be less ethereal, more immediate-sounding. But still with cool sounds and spring-verb on everything (I can’t help it). I guess that all could change as the mixes evolve. The picture to the left is of this cool old public address tube amplifier (Made in Chicago) from the ’50s that’s been modded to act as either a guitar head or a pre-amp. The tubes are all original RCA coke bottle shaped beasts that are on the verge of death which sounds noisy and amazing. I picked it up for cheap in Toronto last year and it’s been a staple piece of versatile gear for me since. Great for making guitar sound bad ass, or a tambourine sound like crap. Awesome crap.
I’d never recorded a cello before, but the sessions I did with Rebecca sounded amazing, and hopefully she’ll come by again soon to sprinkle some more brooding sad fairy dust all over this record.
I’m also starting a seven-day herbal cleanse this week. No salt, sugar, alcohol, refined grains, processed foods, coffee, etc. plus a bunch of herbal mumbo-jumbo supplements. I want my colon to be in tip-top shape while I work on this record. Wish me luck.