Acres of Lions
Reaction (Cordova Bay)
Victoria-based quartet Acres of Lions may wear its vintage-emo heart on its sleeve, but the sing-along “ba-ba" refrain of “Reaction" shows there’s an unabashed pop influence at play.
Cults (Hand Drawn Dracula)
No idea what Josh McIntyre is saying in the murked-out vocals here, but its lo-fi bedroom-goth sound brings to mind black robes, red candles, and midnight goings-on of a secretive nature. In other words, typical Saturday-night fare.
Depth of Width (Part 1) (Illegal Art)
Like a tinkling, buzzing loop that drills into your head with endless permutations, this sounds like a mashup of a lost Steve Reich piece and the tones that the Andromedans broadcast in a vain attempt to communicate with us.
Mother Mary (Light Organ)
Foot-stomping folk doesn’t come much more raw and heartfelt than the way local boy Adrian Glynn delivers it here. Bonus points for making balalaika and slide guitar sound like a natural pairing.
War on Drugs
“Baby Missiles (Secretly Canadian)
Think for a moment how awesome it would be: babies being used as human missiles, fired headfirst into your marinating- in-LSD grey matter while the War on Drugs spins icy synth-pop magic. Just say “Hell, yes."
Three Blocks (Domino)
Pastoral pop that will make you wonder what the hell you’re doing in Vancouver when you could be strolling the streets of Edinburgh, Scotland, taking in the sights through a Vaseline-smeared camera lens.
Drink! Dance! Destroy! (Independent)
While “hardcore" might be stretching things as a description, Teenage X is definitely faster, louder, and snottier than most of what passes for punk these days. Get drunk, crank it, and then fuck shit up, preferably on the dance floor.
Darlings of Chelsea
Raise This Flag (North Ruckus)
Former Black Halo Jay Millette resurfaces in a quartet that falls somewhere between ass-kicking trash rock and turbo-charged power pop. Welcome back, sir—you’ve been missed.
Nightwatch (Friendly Fire)
Do you like female-fronted bands where the singer sounds sexier than ’60s-era Nancy Sinatra and more mysterious than Mazzy Star’s Hope Sandoval? Then you’re going to love the smoky, twilight pop of "Nightwatch".
Cousin Corona (Fat Possum)
The way it blasts off from a simple bass groove to a Technicolor explosion of fuzz-fucked guitar pyrotechnics makes "Cousin Corona" sound like a Pixies B-side. And Yuck, to its credit, would no doubt be the first to point that out.
Seekir (Sacred Bones)
Goth goddess Nika Danilova does her usual phantom-of-the-opera thing, but this time she’s backed by a track that could only be described as "haunted house".