Friday, July 3, 2015

Recording: Vallens

Artist: Vallens

Song: Karen*

Recorded at 159 Manning ("M For Manning"), June 19, 2015.

Vallens - Karen

Once again Tim McCready turned his home into the city's coolest venue for a day, transforming living room, basement and backyard into performance spaces for a chill day-long party. A backyard stage under an arch of trees at the very far end of the lot made the show feel even more like it was taking place off in some friendly forest. The programming, thanks once again to an alliance with M for Montréal and an association with a large local corporate rock festival, mixed a few mostly-Montréal out-of-towners with local faces.

I'd previously caught Robyn Phillips in a support role with other bands and but I'd been waiting to see a full set from this new project she leads. Based on the couple songs available online and the band's live presence, I'd have to say this is one of the most exciting emerging units in town right now. Mixing atmospheric haziness with postpunk crunch, there's a nimble musical chemistry here that's topped off with Phillips' excellent vocals — at times sounding like kd lang covering PJ Harvey. An album on Hand Drawn Dracula is on its way, but in the meantime you should make an effort to hear these songs live.

[Vallens will be playing alongside Freak Heat Waves, Fake Palms and New Fries at Smiling Buddha on Thursday, July 23rd.]

* Thanks to the band for passing along the title to this one!

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