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Friday, August 31st, 2007

Dancin' In The Wind

If there was such a thing as the sound of a bird made of honey, it would sound like Jenn Grant. The Haligonian songstress, who I first discovered way back last December, released her debut album Orchestra For The Moon in May and while most everyone I know who’s heard her has been beguiled, the numbers that seems to amount to are far less than she deserves.

Possessed of a marvelous voice that’s sweet, supple and dexterous, Grant has crafted a record that deftly combines pop, folk, jazz and country styles into something that could easily fit into any of those genres yet resists such pigeonholing. But what isn’t up for debate is that Orchestra is a terrific showcase for both Grant’s vocal and songwriting talents that goes down real nice and easy – and therein lies my only complaint, and it’s a minor one. Orchestra is so smooth that it can make one yearn for just a little bit of grit or earthiness. Grant sounds like she’s gliding through the whole record and it might be nice to have her touch the ground now and again, get her feet dirty a bit. The way the best angels do.

Grant has been through town innumerable times since that show at the Drake in December and I’ve, sadly, missed them all – and I’ll probably miss the next one when she plays the El Mocambo this Wednesday, September 5 opening for The Veils, here all the way from Australia. After that, her next date is at the Phoenix on November 8, opening for The Weakerthans. Tickets for that show are $25 and go on sale next Saturday, September 8.

MP3: Jenn Grant – “Dreamer”
Video: Jenn Grant – “Dreamer” (YouTube)
MySpace: Jenn Grant

And if you’re not familiar with The Veils, here’s a single and video from their current album Nux Vormica.

MP3: The Veils – “Advice For Young Mothers To Be”
Video: The Veils – “Advice For Young Mothers To Be” (YouTube)

And if that’s not your speed but you’re still looking for something to do next Wednesday, The Bruce Peninsula, who so impressed at Dog Day Afternoon a few weekends ago, have a show at the Tranzac along with Tusks and Snailhouse. eye has an interview with head Bruce Peninsulan Neil Haverty while NOW talks Tusks.

Nicole Atkins & The Sea’s debut full-length Neptune City finally has a release date of October 30 and she’ll be celebrating that night with David Letterman. She’s at Lee’s Palace two weeks prior on October 14 with The Raveonettes. Thanks to For The Records for the info.

NOW five questions Craig Minowa of Cloud Cult, opening up for Land Of Talk at the El Mocambo on Tuesday. The Boston Globe and The Portland Mercury also have interviews.

John Vanderslice’s October 1 show has undergone a change of venue and picked up some support acts. It will now go down at the El Mocambo and feature Two Gallants and Blitzen Trapper. Horseshoe tickets will be honoured at the ElMo.

Also October 1 – Black Rebel Motorcycle Club at the Kool Haus. Tickets $24.50, on sale this morning.

Good news – Patrick Wolf returns to Toronto for a show at Lee’s Palace on October 6. Bad news – I’m in Montreal. Well, bad news for me. Everything else is good news. Tickets are $17.50 and go on sale Saturday.

Glenn Hansard and Marketa Irglova – aka “the guy” and “the girl” from Once – bring the musical component of that film, The Swell Season, to the Danforth Music Hall on November 23. Hopefully the DVD will be out sometime around then as well – I still have to see it. Tickets are $28.50, on sale September 6.

Longwave, who I’m rather pleasantly surprised to see are still active, will be supporting Robbers On High Street at the Horseshoe on September 24.

Chart has details on the gala ceremony for this year’s Polaris Music Prize. It’s happening September 24 at the Phoenix, is invite-only (sorry) and will feature performances from half the nominees, namely Miracle Fortress, Julie Doiron (in Eric’s Trip band configuration), Patrick Watson, Joel Plaskett and Chad Van Gaalen. And in regards to the Arcade Fire kerfuffle reported on earlier this week, apparently the band did eventually give permission for a song to be used on the Polaris compilation CD but the disc was already at the manufacturers by the time they did so.

Harp gets acquainted with Fionn Regan, in town on September 26 with a show at the Horseshoe.

Will Sheff of Okkervil River insists to The Arizona Daily Star that that’s his natural hair colour. Also check out Down The Oubliette, a new fansite for the band dedicated to cataloguing facts, figures and trivia about the band. Okkervil plays Lee’s Palace on September 21.

Matt Berninger tells The Washington Post the story of The National. They’re at the Phoenix on October 8.

Metro Pulse confers with Jason Isbell.

Spinner interviews Bjork. She headlines day one of V Fest next Saturday.

By : Frank Yang at 8:32 am
Category: Uncategorized
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  1. Thierry says:

    I really hope there will be some Nicole Atkins headlining tour dates soon – I don’t really feel like paying $20 for a Raveonettes ticket since I’ve found their output to be progressively less interesting with each record.

    Also, that picture isn’t going to help me get rid of the Jenn Grant crush I’ve had since I first heard her voice come out of my cd player…

  2. coin says:

    EW.com interview with Glan Hansard http://www.ew.com/ew/articl… . Also, "Once" is great.

  3. nbagames says:

    Slight correction – The Veils are from New Zealand, near Australia…

    Great site, keep up the good work – I read daily.

  4. MJ says:

    ‘Once’ is still playing at the Carlton, btw, and apparently won’t be out on DVD until the new year because it’s still going strong in several markets…

  5. Christel says:

    I’ve been SO terribly busy sorting and uploading content, and cursing ftp issues, that I JUST realized that I had yet to thank you for the shout out about our site.

    Thank you from the bottom of my sleep-starved and overworked heart (and of course, from the bottom of the Oubliette!). You gave us our first official media mention, and as such you deserve far more praise than this little text box will allow. We greatly appreciate the Okkervil River fans you sent/will send our way, and when we have settled into a less hectic routine (meaning when we add sections for various articles, gig posters, memorabilia, concert reports, favourite links, etc.) we will return the favour. Chromewaves will be our link of distinction, you might say.

    Thanks ever so!

  6. Christel says:

    PS– I blame the sleep dep for forgetting to include the address again. http://www.downtheoubliette

    All weekend we have been adding more new audio, video, tourdates, setlists and publication links like new entrees at a particularly well- read Mad Tea Party, so come by again and take advantage of my insomnia!

    Cheers,
    Christel