Ottawa’s lo-fi garage rockers Expanda Fuzz just released a new video just in time for Halloween, for their aptly named song “Ghosts and Flowers” off of their brand new LP Cotton Candy Jet Engine.
I mean I think we can all agree that nothing says Halloween like ghosts, flowers, blurred vision, and acetaminophen… or maybe they are waking up from a night of a little too much boos. Sorry I couldn’t help it.
The video is shot in a way that truly matches the band’s lo-fi vibes. From the shots of the sunflowers in the garden to the mannequin in the medic tent surrounded by old school medical supplies, this video really captures the fuzzy ambiance and slow driving flow of the song.
For anyone who has ever seen the band perform or seen their previous videos, note that this is one of the first time you ever get a chance to see Niki Nine Doors without her infamous 60’s mod chic white sunglasses.
Check out the video below and go listen to the rest of the most excellent Cotton Candy JetEngine and grab yourself of copy of limited edition cotton candy pink vinyl.
Ottawa heavy-metal “supergroup” Black Galaxy recently released an explosive new video for their track “Death Monster” with footage that will blow you away.
Black Galaxy is comprised of members from HELLbros! (Josh Roy on drums) Suns of Stone (Jordan Putinski—who was guitarist in Suns—but does vocals in Black Galaxy) and The Wicked Mercy (Dave Nado on guitar and Mark Sudiacal on bass). They layered heavy riffs and booming vocals over five different 1950’s cold war era nuclear war propaganda films & various news reels in the video for “Death Monster.”
The opening monologue of a military commander telling a large group of soldiers that “young men such as you… are doing most of the killing, American boys… you are killing your own people and your yourselves…” sets quite the tone. The rest of the video produced by local legend Jason Vaughan, and features amazing black and white footage of people running for cover in fear and a multitude of explosions.
One of the coolest portions of the video is just after the three minute mark when residents of Ottawa will recognize the scenery. Vaughan found Ottawa-specific scenes which show vehicles crossing the Alexandra Bridge and as well as an explosion rolling through the Rideau Canal Locks near the Chateau Laurier. The footage was pulled from the 1958 film called The Lost Missile.
Check out the video for some rocking riffs and a blast from the past:
Hull post-punk group Scattered Clouds recently released an incredibly well animated and intense video for their new single “Justice.”
The song is powerful and dark which makes sense given that it is inspired by the 2016 death of Abdirahman Abdi at the hands of Ottawa Police. The band describes it as “a minimalist yet violent interpretation of the abuse of power and unlawful vigilantism rampant in the police force.” The band’s lo-fi sound, haunting lyrics and driving drums really complement each other and allows the emotion and rage to boil to the top.
The video has some very impressive animation work layered over some old nondescript black and white video footage. The intensity, anger and violence builds throughout the video, culminating with what appears like blood splatter pulsing on the screen to the beat of the drums. I was especially moved by the powerful imagery of the blows to the head under the watchful eye of the law during the chorus where “justice” is repeated several times.
Ottawa rock and rollers Saint Clare have released a brand new video for their single “Haunts” off of their recently released EPIII, and we’re giving you the exclusive premiere right here on Showbox.
“Haunts” is a searing track off the EP, which begins with a flourish of keys and bellowing horns and then explodes with Matthew Saint Clare’s soaring vocals and layers of frenetic guitar work. This song is a treat that slaps the listener right in the face, and I can’t help but hear influences of The Pixies. You’ll find yourself watching this video five or six times in a row. In fact, just put it on repeat.
The video itself utilizes spooky imagery that includes close ups of masked vocalists, a scintillating blue-red-white colour palette, and chaotic video overlays that all add to the eerie nature of the song. At its climax, the video will have you mesmerized and unable to look away.
“Haunts” was directed by Montreal’s Hart, and features Hart & George, with support from Christina Maynard and Julien Lindwall. For more information on Hart’s work check out his website here.
Saint Clare’s next show will take place on Saturday, May 26th at 5:30 PM, at Ottawa, Ontario’s City Hall as part of the Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend 2018, with other local support from Chigurh and Slo’ Tom and the Handsome Devils. More info can be found here. Be sure to check this band out live, as their explosive sound is sure to fill the streets of downtown Ottawa and enthrall crowds.
Noisy punk duo Deathsticks recently released their first video as a band for their new song “Finger Food” off their yet to be released EP Deathsnacks.
Originally from Peterborough, guitarist Matt Post and drummer Laura Klinduch now call the nation’s capital home, and the Ottawa scene is certainly better for it. The video revolves around the band breaking vinyls and using them in various ways such as throwing them against the side of a house, smashing them with a hammer, flushing them down a toilet and using them as a drum sticks or cymbals. They also light three different candles with pictures of dogs on them, one by one, throughout the video to ultimately have them all lit on a coffee table. Not sure what it represents, if anything, but they are pretty cool candles.
Watch the video below and catch them band live when they release Deathsnacks while opening for B.A. Johnston and Steve Adamyk Band on April 27th at House of Targ, details here.
The video begins with clips of Jon and various members of the Flying Hellfish out on tour making you think this will most likely be a tour montage video. Instead we are treated to the band rocking out on stage wearing their now signature Hawaiian shirts, a tribute to JS Belleau—a member of the Ottawa music scene who left us too soon.
Most of the video was shot during the band’s set at Pouzza Fest 2017 in Montreal by the very talented Jonah Aspler. It is a lot of fun to watch the band playing on stage to so many familiar faces in the crowd even if it isn’t in Ottawa. And it is awesome to watch Richard Barrie (Positive Charge) give Jon a big kiss and later when Jon cheers the crowd with his tall boy of PBR.
Watch the video below and come live a live Jon Creeden & the Flying Hellfish performance for yourself at their Stall album release show this Friday April 6 at House of Targ supported by The Creeps, Finderskeepers and Joe Vickers, more details here.
Ottawa’s neo-soul six-piece, Slack Bridges, just dropped a video for their single “In the Drought” off their very well received debut album Joy of Joys.
The video perfectly captures the realities of living in one of the world’s coldest capitals. The band, all except lead singer Matt Gilmour, can be seen huddled together indoors (in the wonderful speakeasy at Union Local 613) playing games and having a few drinks to escape the frigid weather outside. It all starts out fun while the band plays poker, but gets a little more heated when they shift their attention to Sorry. I love that they also find time for some Dungeon and Dragons.
Meanwhile Matt can be seen walking around town in the cold singing to the camera as he considers the difficult decision to cut ties with those who don’t have his best interests at heart. As Matt works his way through various neighbourhoods in the snow-covered city, one of my favourite stops is watching him sing while walking across the Hammer St. pedestrian bridge over the Queensway. The video finally culminates with Matt joining the rest of his bandmates in the speakeasy to much rejoicing.
The video was shot by local cameraman and director extraordinaire, Luca Fiore, who has previously worked with Juno award winners and other local greats like The Love Machine and The White Wires.
Check out the video below and be sure to catch Slack Bridges in April when they take to the stage at the second annual Bangers and Mash soul music festival in Ottawa.
Hull’s post-apocalyptic romantics, Scattered Clouds, are back with a new video for their track “5xx,” and the track itself is available now on a limited edition of 100 cassettes on Boiled Records and digitally on their Bandcamp page.
The footage for the “5xx” video was taken from projections by Ottawa’s own Hard Science, whose glitchy analogue style is distinctly recognizable. The band describes the video as a “performance within a performance,” in which the video was mixed, mangled and ripped to shreds using old circuit bent video equipment (Tachyons + Vortex Decoder) and captured to on a VCR.
The video itself starts off with a loop of a dark highway distorted through the video equipment, synced perfectly to the pulsing rhythm which sounds as though it could be an audio glitch in and of itself. However, after a few seconds of what could have been a scene from Lost Highway, the instruments come in and the video switches to Jamie Kronick and Philippe Charbonneau’s performance. The mirrored images, colour transformations, and distorted video are perfect examples of how Hard Science takes viewers into his time machine and creates a world around us that is truly encompassing.
Philippe’s dark, swelling bass lines and brooding vocals command the listeners’ attention and his vocals draw us in closer into the void toward the end of the song. It ends in total chaos. Scattered Clouds continue to demonstrate their potency, demanding that listeners stay engaged much like a soundtrack to a David Lynch film.
The local hip-hop duo, Buck-N-Nice, are back and have been teasing us with pieces off their upcoming sophomore album EMAG since the beginning of the year.
They recently dropped a video for the first single, “Care Less,” off of the album. They hosted a video release party a few weeks back at Bar Robo, which also featured a performance from another rising hip hop group in Ottawa called Tapas. The video is simple, no gimmicks, and really lets the words shine through. That being said, the video is far from boring. I can’t help but feel that Buck-N-Nice are interrogating the viewer as the light bulb hanging from the ceiling in the small room swings back an forth. I can’t really tell who is the good cop and who is the bad cop—or maybe they’re both here to verbally rough you up.
The entire piece has a certain underground edge to it. The small room could be in someone’s cellar or damp shed in the woods. The setting creates this sense of isolation and voyeurism all at once. The song also clocks in closer to a punk song at under three minutes than the prototypical hip-hop track.
Director Patrick Lozinski did a really good job with the whole video. I especially love how epic DJ So Nice looks at the end standing over his decks scratching out the final piece of the track.
Check out the video below and keep your eyes peeled for more content from Buck-N-Nice over the coming months leading up to the release of EMAG.
Ottawa’s Casa Lagarto has released their brand new EP called Shed It, a six-song trip that features thick grooves and atmospheric textures throughout.
The band is comprised of well-established Ottawa musicians Jason Barkhouse (guitar/vocals), Arturo Portocarrero (drums/vocals), Travis Kinnear (bass/vocals), Jonny Yuma (guitar/vocals), and Grant McNeill (guitar), some of whom are members of The Yips (RIP), Lost to the River, and Fire Antlers.
Casa Lagarto is the reincarnation of sorts—it was an old stomping rockabilly project that Jonny, Grant, Travis, and their pal Phil Horne had called Chero Chavo, which was active from 2013-2015. With an expanded and altered lineup, the band’s sound evolved in 2015 to become Casa Lagarto (the name being a nod to Jim Morrison and author Carlos Castaneda). With Casa’s new members Arturo and Jason coming from different styles and musical backgrounds, the group quickly rounded out its sound as a whole. To date, they’ve had plenty of action live, having shared the stage with such acts as Del Bel, Saxsyndrum, Bob Log III, Twin Peaks, Bloodshot Bill, to name a few.
Shed It truly sounds like it was written in a shack in the desert. There’s a looseness to the whole thing that makes the album easy to sink into, slowly taking the listener deeper and deeper like quicksand. The album is rich with reverb and jangly guitar tones, deep and groovy bass lines, and Arturo’s lax and unobtrusive drum rhythms resonating throughout. Jonny’s hollow strumming and deep, simmering vocals bring another dimension to Shed It, though, completing the spooky yet captivating aesthetic of the band.
According to the band, the album’s name refers to shedding the skin you’re in, or shedding the skin you’ve been. It’s a cunning reflection on the good, bad an ugly from the past, the masks we often wear throughout our lives—and a desire to burn old bridges in hopes of charting new paths towards healthier self-understanding.
Casa Lagarto might fall somewhere between Dirty Beaches and Timber Timbre with respect to their musical approach. They create atmospheric and cinematic soundscapes, building and maintaining a subtle tension throughout Shed It. The song “Desoronto,” for example, feels like the prelude to a pistol duel in a classic Western. The washed out and weary track “El Dorado” burns slowly, with instrumentation and lyrics that create dark imagery and places the listener directly into “the valley of the shadow.”
The group has already released videos for their songs “Lights Out” and “Scarecrow” (produced by Black Lab Studio), and are pleased to share a brand new one for “Deseronto” (above), which was shot and produced by Santiago Trugeda. Even more, they’re already heading back into the studio in March 2018 to start recording tunes for their next album, and concert-goers can forward to them hitting the road in the near future.
‘Shed It’ is an exclusively digital release which you can listen for free at their Bandcamp page or stream on Spotify, Apple Music, Google Play, Dezer, and all streaming sites. You can also enjoy the stream below.