While tomorrow NXNE concludes officially, tonight's festivities are really where it's at. There is just too much going on, really illustrating the major downside to festival's such as this is that you're always going to miss something. But c'est la vie. As you can see from my picks below, it's very likely that I might just camp out at Lee's for most of the night. But then again maybe I won't. We'll see how it all works out. As always make sure to check out the NXNE Twitter as you never know what last-minute special shows might be announced. Fuck, if Brian Wilson plays some intimate last-minute set somewhere, I will die [not literally - you know what I mean] - but then again at 2:00 am he's probably fast asleep in his hotel room, which is probably what I'll want to be doing at that time also.
5-5:40 PM - Dirty Beaches @ Yonge Dundas Square
Alex Zhang Hungtai, known by his stage name Dirty Beaches, is a one-man band whose music, from what I've heard is a weird hybrid of rockabilly and post-punk influences. Intriguing stuff, although I'm not sure how this'd come off in the daylight and concrete surroundings of Yonge Dundas Square.
Video: Dirty Beaches - "Sweet 17" (live @ Hardly Art / Art Fags showcase, SXSW 2011)
7-7:40 PM - Cults @ Yonge Dundas Square
This NYC indie outfit, with their reverb-laden, Motown / Blues influced pop music has been making waves since last year having alreadly rolled through Toronto twice. Apparently there was a packed house for their midnight set at Lee's Palace yesterday. Here's your last chance during the festival to see what the hype's all about.
Video: Cults - "Most Wanted" (Live in Toronto, 4.4.2011)
8 PM - Mode Moderne @ Supermarket
Elements of goth-pop, Joy Division, and The Smiths seem to infuse the bands tunes from what I've heard. Given my 'goth' leanings as of late (Austra, Zola Jesus, and older bands like Siouxsie and The Banshees, This Mortal Coil), Mode Moderne would give me another opportunity to awaken my inner goth.
Video: Mode Moderne - "Ashes" (live, 2009)
Video: Mode Moderne - "Real Goths (fan video)
Also worth your time: Men Without Hats @ Yonge Dundas Square [8:00 pm - 8:40 pm]
9 PM - Doldrums @ 918 Bathurst
As quoted from their last.fm page, "Doldrums is a project started by Airick Woodhead. He lives in Toronto and does weird stuff." According to the band's website, they are soon(?) to be releasing a split 7" with DDMMYYYY.
Video: Doldrums - "I'm Homesick Sitting Up Here In My Satellite" (music video)
Also worth your time: Louise Burns @ Supermarket, Devo @ Yonge Dundas Square [9:30 pm - 11:00 pm]
10 PM - Guards @ Lee's Palace
Guards is the one-man band pop project of Richie Follin(who also is in the band Willowz). His sister is Madeline Follin of the band Cults.
Video: Guards - Live at Daytrotter Barnstormer IV
Also worth your time: Jennifer Castle @ The Great Hall, Hooded Fang @ Horseshoe Tavern
11 PM - Wild Nothing @ Lee's Palace
I was impressed with the indiepop stylings of NYC group Wild Nothing when I caught them during CMJ in NYC last October so it's very possible I will just stay put at Lee's for them and the next couple of acts.
Video: Wild Nothing - "Live In Dreams" (live at Monster Island Basement for Fader TV)
Also worth your time: Grimes @ 918 Bathurst, Braids @ The Great Hall, Jenn Grant @ Horseshoe Tavern, Heartbeat Hotel @ Rancho Relaxo, Nightbox @ Wrongbar
midnight - Twin Shadow @ Lee's Palace
Twin Shadow, the stage name of George Lewis Jr. Lewis was born in the Dominican Republic and raised in Florida, been making splashes in the indie scene for the last year or so eventually getting signed to 4AD for his debut full-length Forget whose been described as the black Morrissey by some and his sound harkens back to the new-wave pop of the 80's. I've heard but a few of his tunes and I'm liking everything so far. Lee's probably will be packed at this point so it's recommended you probably come by a few sets early.
Video: Twin Shadow - "Castles In The Snow" (Billboard's Tastemakers Session @ Mophonics Studios, NYC)
Also worth your time: Secret Cities @ Dakota Tavern, Chad VanGaalen @ The Great Hall, Dinosaur Bones @ Horseshoe Tavern, Diamond Rings @ Wrongbar
1 AM - Memoryhouse @ Lee's Palace
This Guelphite band's dream-pop impressed me during their set at Canadian Musicfest earlier this year. But then I'm a sucker for this kind of music. The band were recently signed to Sub Pop - look for a new release by the end of the year.
Video: Memoryhouse - "Lately" (music video)
Also worth your time: Crocodiles @ Silver Dollar, Handsome Furs @ Garrison, Grimes @ The Great Hall, One Hundred Dollars @ Horseshoe Tavern
2 AM - Makeout Videotape @ Garrison
Tasty, lo-fi pop nuggets from are what this young guitar / drums Vancouverite duo seem to specialize in. Not too shabby. Good way to end the night perhaps - if I'm still standing.
Video: Makeout Videotape - "Heatwave" (music video)
Also worth your time: Lying down on the nearest park bench.