Wednesday, May 26th, 2010
Arcade Fire announce show at Toronto Islands
Last.fmIt’s been a long time since there’s been a live music throwdown of any kind at the city’s most picturesque and moderately inconvenient venue, the Toronto Islands. The 2009 edition of the almost-annual Islands concert was canceled thanks to a combination of the Toronto Indy and sluggish ticket sales, so excepting a private frosh week event last September, the last time the throngs gathered on Olympic Island was V Fest 2008, and that ended with the ignoble thud of Noel Gallagher getting knocked on his ass. 2010 seems set on making up for that absence, however. In addition to the heavyweight lineup of Pavement, Broken Social Scene, Beach House and Band Of Horses (and more) playing the June 19 Toronto Island Concert, a second excuse for people to complain about having to take the ferry was announced yesterday.
Having sold out three nights at Massey Hall on their last visit to Toronto in 2007, where Arcade Fire would play next was a reasonable question – the idea of another multi-night stand would make wallets ache and still probably not meet demand, and yet any of the larger venues in the city – Sound Academy, Air Canada Centre, Molson Amphitheatre – seemed unlikely for a multitude of reasons. But having played the inaugural Olympic Island Concert in 2004 at the bottom of the bill as veritable unknowns, Arcade Fire will return six years later on August 14 as one of the biggest bands in the country. Tickets are $47 in advance, plus ferry, fees and $1 charitable donation to Partners In Health, and go on sale Friday at noon. The band remain cagey about releasing details of their third album, but a single could/should be out next Tuesday and the record will probably follow soon after, almost certainly before their touring schedule starts in Finland at the end of June.
Gates for the show are at 4PM, so while that’s a little too late to assume this will blossom into a mini-festival, there’s certainly enough time for a few decent supporting acts to be added. So while this Summer is looking awfully lean as far as fests in the GTA go – V is MIA/probably DOA, Rogers Picnic’s 2009 hiatus looks to now be permanent, Imagine is feeling more like a pipe dream and there hasn’t even been a peep about Edgefest for the kids – we’re doing alright for festival-setting shows. And if you like, you can think of the Arcade Fire and Broken/Pavement show as a single excellent multi-day festival – just one that’s two months apart and require separate admissions.
Having sold out their May 28 show at the Horseshoe, Born Ruffians will entertain those who couldn’t get tickets or just need another another encore with a free in-store at Sonic Boom on Saturday, May 29, at 3PM. Their new record Say It is out next Tuesday.
Also confirmed for an in-store are Swedish folk duo First Aid Kit. Their debut The Big Black & The Blue is out now, and they’ll showcase it both at the Rivoli on the evening of June 12 and at Criminal Records that afternoon at 4PM. Exclaim has a feature on the band.
The Old Crow Medicine Show will be at the Phoenix on July 13.
The Black Keys have added a second local date in support of the just-released Brothers; in addition to the sold-out August 3 show at the Kool Haus, they’ll also be there the following night, August 4. The Morning Benders will support both nights.
Video: The Black Keys – “Next Girl”
Though the new Belle & Sebastian record is nearly finished – their Twitter is abuzz with updates and hey, does anyone remember when this band was all mysterious and stuff? – Stuart Murdoch continues to find time to tend to his God Help The Girl project, releasing a new non-album single and video. “Baby You’re Blind” features vocals from Linnea Jonsson of Swedes Those Dancing Days; it’s available digitally and as a 7″, and has an accompanying video. And while I haven’t figured out exactly where they got it, the pull quote at BrooklynVegan certainly implies that there’ll be some B&S live dates in Canada this Summer/Fall. Hey, maybe we can get THEM to play the Islands as well!
Amelia Fletcher, formerly of Heavenly and currently of Tender Trap, talks to Spinner about being name-checked on the new Hold Steady record. The new Tender Trap record Dansette Dansette is due out on June 22.
NME reports that the second album from Nick Cave side-project Grinderman will arrive on September 13 under the title of Grinderman 2. The first record was greasy, grimy and awesome – I expect no less from this one.