By: TJ Liebgott
The 4th annual Indieweek took over the clubs of Toronto (October 9-13) for what could be considered a battle of the bands royal rumble. Featuring over 50 independent acts, playing 8 clubs in 5 days, Indieweek was sensory overload of where to go and who to see. Bands came as far as Ireland just to be heard and have a chance to compete for 1 of 2 prize packages that included cash, guitars, a wireless mic, recording time, advertising, distribution, CD replication, and many other pieces of swag.
With all the bands playing throughout the week, one could only get a taste of the many fantastic bands playing in this event. Of those bands Toronto Music Scene did see, here are the ones that stood out:
These Irish rockers may be relatively unknown in Canada, but they won’t be for very much longer. Having already cracked the Top 40 charts in their native land, Vesta Varro brought their U2 meets Joy Division with a hint of The Smiths sound to an unsuspecting Canadian crowd. Playing 3 stellar sets over the week, Vesta Varro took home one of the top prize packages. See interview for more details.
The name says it all with these guys. If you’ve never seen TDM play, all you have to do is imagine the kind of band you would see in a Hell’s Angels bar in the worst part of town. Their 80’s inspired hard rock was more intense than a gang beating. The Toronto crowd may not have received them as well as they had hoped, but TDM would get a more energetic response from the usual Bovine crowd. TDM thinks of themselves as the messiah of Rock and Roll and after hearing them, it’s not hard to figure out why. See Interview for more details.
Big Soy does with 2 members what most bands can’t do with 4. Don’t get the wrong idea though, these guys aren’t trying to be the next White Stripes. With a duo consisting of John Edds on guitar and vocals and Adam White playing drums as well as bass lines on his mini keyboard, these guys have a thinner sound than most bands, but still manage to pack a punch. Their songs are stripped down, gritty and honest and from time to time quite memorable.
Toronto Indie Award winner KC Roberts played a great show at the reverb although leadsinger KC was nursing some sort of throat infection. The Funk/Hip-Hop/Rock 6 piece impressed the judges enough to earn a spot to the finals Saturday night. However, due to various reasons, KC and the boys had to graciously decline the invitation.
Undadogg was the most chilled out band of the week. Their sound is a little downtempo/trip-hop with a splash of jazz and lounge thrown in. Singer Andrea Lucarelli’s haunting, hypnotic voice complements the band perfectly. Fans of The Sneaker Pimps would be wise to check this band out.
Merging Electronica, Rock and Pop, Morgan David and his band played a relaxed set at The Drake hotel. Originally involved in Techno and perfecting the art of Remixing, Morgan David proved he could spread his wings into a live setting. See interview for more details.
For more details on Indieweek or to apply for next year’s event visit www.indieweek.com
Toronto Music Scene would like to congratulate this year’s Indieweek winners Vestta Varro and Hello Beautiful.