Firstly, just want to give a heads up, that I updated my previous post(my CMF picks for Friday, Saturday & Sunday) with hyperlinks to artists websites & MySpace sites. I have a few for-sures tonight but mostly playing it by ear. I'll also be taking in the non-CMF related Joanna Newsom show at the Phoenix which is an early show with doors at 6pm and the opener Kevin Barker going on at 6:30 pm. I'm not quite sure if I'll bother with Sunday night actually.
I've managed to catch a band or few each night of Canadian Musicfest since Wednesday but this year's festival's has been frustrating. Weather of course was shit yesterday but that aside, the wristband/media limitations I've experienced firsthand and or heard or read about are a matter of concern.
I didn't get in to the Jason Collett/Zeus/Bahamas show at Lee's Palace Wednesday night but that's more due to me not showing up early enough for a show that was a bigger draw than I'd expected. Still, I waited an hour but decided to bail before ending up at Painted Lady on Ossington to catch Aussies Dead Letter Chorus, a great indie folk rock outfit who'll fortunately be back next week to play the no-cover Nu Music Nite at the Horseshoe on March 16 which will be their Canadian album release show, and then going on a short Canadian jaunt opening for Two Hours Traffic which will stop in Toronto at Lee's Palace on April 3.
Thursday night was a good night overall with me hunkering down for most of the night at Lee's Palace for an electro-tinged trio of sets including Mississauga/Dundas duo New Look, UK rapper Speech Debelle, and Pitchfork darlings Neon Indian. The night was hosted by The Windish Agency. I'd have stuck around for Sweden's Little Dragon but I'd also wanted to check out Seattle indie folk outfit Hey Marseilles down the street at Clinton's. Short story, the crowd at Clinton's sucked, but Hey Marseilles played a good set of old-Decemberists-inspired folk-rock.
Friday night was all sorts of problems. Of course, first, it was raining. I was in the downtown area at a very decent time but decided to kill some time to grab a coffee. I'd eventually ended up at Yonge and College with a plan to head to the Silver Dollar to catch San Paulo's The Name at The Silver Dollar. It felt like the westbound College streetcar took forever so by the time I got to Spadina and College near The Silver Dolar it was already 9:30 pm and imagining that The Name's 9 pm set was likely over or nearly over I decided to head up to Lee's Palace to catch The Russian Futurists. I was initially elated to arrive at Lee's Palace with maybe eight people in line but eventually the lineup wait turned from 15 minutes, to half an hour, to a full hour and with me nearly reaching my limit by the one hour and half mark (at this point having missed the 'Futurists' and The Acorn's set) I almost gave up. The only thing that kept me going really were the people in line who were friendly and chatty, making the experience much less miserable. Wristband holders, were long told they had no chance in getting in anymore, but media and pass holders still had hope, even if with each passing minutes it seemed less likely. And then the hope I'd been waiting for - finally I see a CMW organizer pop her head out and tell security that at least 20 pass holders will be let in and with me about third in line at this point, I was absolutlely floored. I made it just in time for Plants & Animals, and stuck around also for Think About Life (who'd I'd never seen live until then). It turned out to be a decent night after all. However, going back to my car(parked at Spadina and Queen) was entirely frustrating as waiting for the Bathurst Blue Line bus south took friggin' forty minutes. Fuck you TTC.