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2006 Was A Year-and-a-Half (Pt. II)

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Part I / Part III / Part IV

Bicycles @ The Boat

Carrying on from last week, here’s the next installment of the Top 20 shows from 2006.

15. Asobi Seksu @ Sneaky Dees

Out of New York, Asobi Seksu are a static-y dream-rock band. Their singing is in both Japanese and English, and accompanied by waves of distorted guitars that sweep over you. Their music can remove you from your physical being, transplanting you to a sonic realm inside your head. This is what I experienced at Sneaky Dees. An audible adventure through my ear canals on a gunship of frequency.

14. The Bicylces with Henry Faberge and the Adorables @ The Boat

This show was a birthday party for a dude named Paul, the drummer from Woodhands and several other bands. Obijhou ceded their headlining spot so The Adorables and The Bicycles could team up to form a Voltron-like super group. Although the music was drunken, it was lively and festive. The bands stripped down to their skivvies, the audience followed suit. This was the first time I’ve been to a show where most of the venue was in their underwear. It made for one hell of an experience.

Bicycles @ The Boat 2

13. Catfish Haven @ Sneeky Dees

Catfish Haven make this list not only for being impeccably good live, but also for being gracious house guests and nice guys. This show completely blew away my expectations of this Chicago blues-rock grunge band. After the show, the guys joined a friend and I at my apartment, where we proceeded to spend the night discussing world politics, music, art and Tuvan throat singing.

12. The Meligrove Band @ Lee’s Palace

I saw the Meligrove Band twice in 2006. Both shows were amazing. First one was at the Hooch, a five dollar show; they played with Quebexio and Japanther. The second and better of the two was at Lee’s, probably my favourite venue in Toronto. They played their set with a backing horn section made up of members of The Bicycles and Born Ruffians. Bonus points to Andrew Scott for being a member of both The Bicylces and The Meligrove Band. During the show at Lee’s Palace I got to hear them play, for the first time ever live, my favourite song by them, Isle of Yew. This song alone could have made them worthy of a spot on this list but thankfully the rest of the gig was just as good.

11. Shad @ The Drake

Shad, the guitar strumming MC from London, Ontario, was one of the best surprises of the year. While researching bands to see during NXNE, a song came on the NXNE radio station that caught mine and a friend’s attention. It was Shad’s I Get Down, and it earned him a spot on our NXNE plans. NXNE is a series of indie shows at various venues around Toronto during a weekend in June. Myself and a group of friends got wrist bands and spent the weekend riding our bikes all over the city, hectically trying to catch as much great music as we could. On a side note, I spent most of my journeying in excruciating pain as I was suffering from a ripped tendon in my left bicep. Every bump on the road sent shivers of pain up my arm as I cycled the city. This didn’t stop me from making it to the Drake to catch Spiral Beach, God Made me Funky and of course Shad. During his set, he was accompanied by a band, a DJ and a dude beat-boxing and mimicking instruments with his mouth. Shad played acoustic guitar while he rapped his sensitive and honest hip-hop songs. This show is one of only a handful of great hip hop shows I have witnessed, most of which were all in the past year.

Coming soon — #’s 10 – 6


One Comment leave one →
  1. James17930 permalink
    Tuesday, March 6, 2007 5:39 pm

    Only band out of these I’ve seen live was the Bicycles and they didn’t really do it for me — of course it was only 10 mins and three songs so not the best indication of their abilities, perhaps.

    Really like Meligrove and Asobi so I’m sure they had great shows.

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