Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Recording: The Muscadettes

Artist: The Muscadettes

Song: Growing Pains

Recorded at The Great Hall's BLK BOX ("Long Winter: Year Four, Volume One"), November 13, 2015.

The Muscadettes - Growing Pains

Returning once more to bring some cultural glow to the darkest part of the year, Long Winter kicked off its fourth season — once again building on three years of experience while trying some new wrinkles. As has happened in the past, the season's first event felt a bit like a "dress rehearsal" for the year, less reliant on a big headliner as the thousand little logistical wrinkles of throwing a one-night-festival got worked out. So while a new liquor licence meant drinkers weren't confined to the floor of the main hall (easing the huge bottleneck there) there were still some flow issues, including a couple sets in the restaurant that were (as far as I could tell) utterly inaccessible to event-goers. Another slow evolution is that, perhaps more than ever, it felt as if it was the non-musical component was central to the night as a whole, with music filling in the leftover space instead of vice versa. Of course there was still a lot of music — I caught at least part of no fewer than eleven sets. It's crowded and a little claustrophobic, but there ain't nothing else in the city like Long Winter.

Somewhat surprisingly, the night's best music was to be found down in the basement, which hosted a larger cohort of bands than usual while the Conversation Room played host to Benjamin Kamino's dance piece. I first discovered this Montréal crew in a back yard on a summer day, and while that is probably the natural environment for their sunny pop-rock, they got the crowd dancing down in the Great Hall's dank, dark recesses.

[Volume Two of this year's series is already announced for Saturday, December 12th (do note that it's not on its usual Friday) with music from Isla Craig, New Chance, LUKA, Nailbiter, Petra Glynt, LAL, Blunt Chunks and much more. The LW crew is also taking over the AGO as part of the Gallery's First Thursdays series next week.]

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