This is everything that’s right about Vancouver in the summertime. Do yourself a favour: get a pass (it’s a steal at $15), a bicycle to zip between venues, and check out as much as you can. You can even plot your route beforehand on the handy Google map available at www.musicwaste.ca along with a full event schedule. Here are our picks of the pack.
Healthy Students | Hard Feelings | Tight Solid | Progressive Thinker @ The Cobalt
Healthy Students are a hardcore outfit featuring Andy Dixon (of Secret Mommy, Winning, and a ton of other rad bands). The versatile Mr. Dixon’s been on a bit of a roll lately (last year’s The Mice of Mt. Career is an excellent, excellent album), and with members of Taxes rounding out the band, Healthy Students are a pretty good bet. We have heard lots of positive things through the grapevine about the other bands on this lineup, especially about Hard Feelings, so put your money on this one, ‘cause it’s a sure winner.
Sex Negatives | Totally Ripped | The Internet! | Shipyards | Ahna | Ejaculation Death Rattle | Boogie Monster | yellowthief @ The Cobalt
It’s noise night at the Cobalt! Some of the best examples of Vancouver’s vaunted noise scene are on this bill: the largely improvisational Sex Negatives, the tremendously named Ejaculation Death Rattle, and some of the wildest drumming you’ll ever witness courtesy of Boogie Monster’s Tony Dallas. You may want to pack earplugs to this one, or you’re risking (possibly permanent) ear damage. On the other hand, isn’t that what noise music is all about?
Gang Violence | Animal Bodies | Makeout Videotape | Crystal Swells @ Honey Lounge
Sarah Cordingley of Gang Violence said in an interview with Discorder, “We’re dance, we’re punk, we’re electro and we’re rock, but we’re not any hyphenation of them.” That pretty much sums up their sound, but they are also one of the best live bands in Vancouver. If you haven’t seen them at one of their performances about town yet, it’s well worth the effort. They’re still pretty enjoyable the second and third times around. Rob Andow and Bobby Siadat, who provide the non-vocal portion of the band, play a tight fast set that is mesmerizing to listen to when combined with Cordingley’s powerful voice.
Also worth mentioning are Makeout Videotape, a lo-fi garage outfit who sound like the UK invasion happening with Ariel Pink’s production style. If they’re as good as their Myspace, then they’re worth showing up a bit early for.
London Drugs | Haunted Beard | MT-40 | Techromancer | Kidnapping @ The Biltmore
Noisy electronic music all night long. With a dancy element in the form of the brilliantly named Techromancer, heavily processed experimental music from Haunted Beard, fuzzy Gameboy dance music from London Drugs (who literally program their music on Nintendo DSs) and screamy high energy keyboard-drum-machine combo MT-40, you won’t be disappointed if you have any interest in the genre. Even though Sean Orr’s Kidnapping is the exception to all the electronic music, they’re solid musicians and a solid band—if you can get into Orr’s voice.
White Lung | Modern Creatures | Nü Sensae | Needles & Pins @ The Biltmore
White Lung’s Local Garbage 7” was one of the best 45s of 2007, and they’re still going strong. With Modern Creatures and Nü Sensae also on the bill, the night will be an Emergency Room (R.I.P.) reunion of sorts, and a noise-punk extravaganza not to be missed. In fact, you may as well just curl up on one of the Biltmore’s plush banquettes after Thursday night’s show to make sure you get a good spot for this one.
Ghost Bees | Timber Timbre | Rose Melberg | Kellarissa | Ian Wyatt & Jasper Baydala @ Secret Loft
If the punk, noise and rock of Music Waste is a little bit too intense for you, then you may want to check this night out for its more low-key lineup. Local Mint artists Rose Melberg and Kellarissa always give beautiful performances and out-of-towners like Ghost Bees and Timber Timbre are a bargain at the five dollar cover (or less if you get a pass) to get in.
Japandroids | Hermetic | World Club None @ The Biltmore
Japandroids have been staring at us off what seems like the cover of every magazine in town this month. These local buzz kids have been Discorder faves for awhile now and this show, fresh off the celebrity of their new album, will be deservedly packed. Showing up early to make sure you get into the Biltmore won’t be a waste of time. Shindig winners Hermetic give an excellent performance and the rumour mill tells us World Club None had the panel of judges for Music Waste buzzing.
Twin Crystals | Vapid | Pompoir | No L.A. Kill @ The Astoria
This one’s a no-brainer. Consistently one of Vancouver’s best live acts, Twin Crystals are a sure bet for Music Waste excellence. And as for Vapid, if the idea of noisy, energetic punk excites you even a little bit, it would be best if you didn’t miss them. Since the Japandroids show at the Biltmore starts early, there should be plenty of time for you to hop on your bike and coast gently down into Strathcona to catch this show. Don’t forget your helmet!
No Gold | Certain Breeds | Role Mach @ Funky Winkerbeans
These bands don’t have a lot in common musically. The rhythmic No Gold [ed. See page 18 for more] will be headlining for the no-nonsense no wave outfit Certain Breeds and the epic psychedelic barrage that is provided by the seemingly endless army of players in Role Mach. That said, each of these bands do have one thing in common: the ability to put on a solid performance and entertain a crowd. This night is in collaboration with No More Strangers, so expect dancing when the bands wrap up.
Do you like comedy? Yes, you do! And you’re lucky, too, because this year’s edition of Music Waste includes a healthy dose of the funny stuff. Local sketch comedy acts like Bronx Cheer, Manhussy and the Sunday Service will be joined by the video production team Weekend Leisure as well as a contingent from Vancouver’s lively improv comedy scene. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, etc. Do it!
The Waste franchise has also decided to expand into the world of visual art, displaying not only the art of local musicians such as Ben Jacques (Haunted Beard), Andrea Lukic (Nü Sensae) and Justin Gradin (Sex Negatives, Mutators), but also the art of people known about town for being artists of the non-musical variety. The exhibitions will be taking place throughout the city. Going to see them is a great thing to do before heading to check out some bands if you don’t feel like pre-drinking.
Check www.musicwaste.ca for more details and listings.