It’s officially the last week of summer, but just because the sun is calling it quits a little earlier every evening doesn’t mean you should too! After all, you wouldn’t want to miss all of the amazing shows Montreal has in store for us this fall.

Stay updated on all the best shows happening each week, right here! And now for this week: 

Thursday, September 19th: The Struts

Rock fans get ready to roll because English glam rock band The Struts will be traveling to Montreal this week to perform as part of the tour for their second album Young & Dangerous. Released last October, it contains two of their lead singles: Body Talks and Primadonna Like Me.

Stylistically The Struts emulate a unique and modern twist on classic rock with a flamboyant 70’s/80’s flair to it. If that sounds at all like your cup of tea, catch them in the act this Thursday, the 19th, at Mtelus Theatre. 

Primadonna Like Me – The Struts

The Struts with Des Rocks play M Telus, 59 Saint-Catherine East, Thursday, September 18, 2019 at 8pm. Tickets available through MTelus

Friday, September 20th: Marie Davidson – Save the Last Dance for Me

Montreal musician Marie Davidson’s music is absolutely brimming with personality. Her style is minimalistic tech house with plenty of synth, drums, and often her own spoken words; at times laughing, singing, chanting, yelling, all coming together to create an absolutely haunting experience of sound.

She’s been touring internationally since the release of her fourth solo album, Working Class Woman, and now she’s back in Montreal to perform as part of the Red Bull Music Festival at Studio Notre Dame this Friday! The show will also include artists such as Afrodeutsche, Solitary Dancer, and more, and tickets are only $20, so don’t miss this opportunity to see what is sure to be a captivating experience. 

The Psychologist from Davidson’s most recent album, Working Class Woman

Red Bull Music Festival presents Marie Davidson: Save the Last Dance For Me at Studio Notre-Dame, 500 Alphonse D Roy, Friday, September 20 at 10pm. Tickets available through the Red Bull Music Festival

Friday, September 20: Big Shiny Tunes Vol. 6 – CJLO Funding Drive 2019 

Come support Concordia University’s one and only radio station for part of the CJLO FUNdrive 2019, celebrating near 20 years of being on air! 17 different Montreal bands will be covering 17 songs from the album Big Shiny Tunes 6, which, if you didn’t already know, is part of a series of rock albums released through MusiquePlus in Quebec in the late 90s.

The event will be taking place at La Vitrola, and will feature a variety of local talent, such as Summerled, Barnacle, and Jon Cohen Ex. Don’t miss the chance to support your local radio, and jam to all your favourite 90s rock throwbacks played by your favourite Montreal bands. 

Big Shiny Tunes 6 is at La Vitrola, 4602 boul St-Laurent, Friday, September 20 at 7:30pm. RSVP on the Facebook event page

Jon Cohen Ex gives us Baby Life

Friday, September 20th: Frankie Cosmos

New York band Frankie Cosmos, fronted by Greta Kline, is everything you could want from indie-folk as a genre. The songs are most often wistfully personal, and emotionally stirring, as if you were listening to the music equivalent of reading Kline’s own diary.

The combination of the seemingly simplistic but conscious lyrical manner along with Kline’s unobtrusive voice achieves a touching clarity in both sound and meaning. Be sure to catch the band at L’astral this Friday, but be prepared to feel some feelings you probably haven’t felt since high school.

  Frankie Cosmos gives you a haircut

Frankie Cosmos with Lina Tullgren and Locate S,1 plays L’Astral, 305 Sainte-Catherine West, Friday, September 20 at 8pm. Tickets available through Evenko

Monday, September 23rd: Mac DeMarco 

Oh Lizard Man, the nightmares you’ve caused…

Canadian singer and songwriter, Mac DeMarco, who is known for his soft psychedelic rock music, kooky personality, the gap between his two front teeth, and the song that will always send me into the depths of my feelings (see below), will be making an appearance at Mtelus on Monday.

Be there or DeMarco will come to your house dressed as the lizard man from his Nobody music video and sing you soft, haunting lullabies while you sleep. 

Sing it with me: alone again!

Mac Demarco with Dustin Wong and Takako Minekawa plays MTelus, 59 Saint-Catherine East, Monday, September 23 at 8pm. Tickets available through MTelus

Are you or your band playing a show in Montreal? Let Lillie know at music@forgetthebox.net. We’ll do our best to include you in an upcoming Shows This Week, but, of course, no promises.

Montreal’s underground music and arts scenes are multiple and varied. So many pockets of underground (counter)culture exist in this city, it’s impossible to be aware and keep up with all of it. Thankfully, a great culture of collaboration exists here among underground musicians and artists and it’s common to see people blending different sounds and media while working with other artists.

Witching Hour is trying to take that concept and really turn it on its head with full moon or new moon parties that combine music, visual arts, performance and much, much more. Their next event takes place tonight, October 8, and is being promoted as the first Halloween party of 2014, so yes, costumes are welcome.

I’ve been following Witching Hour for a little while now. I’ve even spoken to its founder Michael Noom about the project and have seen the concept evolve over time.

At its core, Witching Hour aims to bring people together for a fun night out in a way that breaks down barriers and banishes inhibitions. But it’s not just fun for the sake of fun (although it can be if that’s what you’re looking for). Rather, Witching Hour hope that attendees will actively participate in the night’s planned activities — which in the past have included yoga, meditation, drawing, body painting and martial arts — and learn something about themselves or the world through discussions of social and geopolitical issues. However, they are very careful to not taint the vibe of their events with personal opinions or schools of thought.

It’s important for Noom to make sure that “it’s the one time people can come together where they’re untouched by educational, corporate and social institutions. Almost everything we do in life is imposed upon us. The concept of magic and wonder is not just for the movies and TV.”

10704103_858039550895339_2463121004087479968_nIf that sounds ambitious, it’s because it is. Noom and others created the group with the idea of bringing the counterculture to the mainstream and welcoming as many opinions and ideas as possible as long as they are presented with compassion and an open mind. They make it a point to team up with others in the artistic community in an effort to draw more and more people into to these events.

Tonight’s event, called Collision of Dimensions, takes place in the very grandiose main hall at the Rialto and has been curated by No Exist (the duo made up of Vincent Ferrari, who performs solo under the moniker Così e Così and Max Posthoorn, who performs as Nothinge) and QuebékisŤanz and features musical performances by Marie Davidson, Così e Così, Pacifique Bleu (YlangYlang and Hazy Montagne Mystique feat. Black Givre), Hobo Cubes, She Devils, Look Vibrant, L’Ħāliġ Orchestre Impérial du QuebékisŤanz and a battle of theremins by Adam O’Callaghan and John Tielli. There will also be short-film screenings, an Easter egg hunt and bobbing for apples as well as visuals by Guillaume Vallée and live painting by artist Chang E Ling, who also helped organize this edition.

I spoke with Ling and Vincent Ferrari (aka Così e Così) of No Exist about their involvement in Witching Hour. They were both invited by Noom to participate as performers in previous editions and have decided to join forces in putting on this event, thus Collision of Dimensions is an appropriate title for this edition.

10458098_810338285665466_5531972389165084846_nOriginally from St. John’s, Chang E Ling moved here and started painting. Previously, he was more into illustration but discovered he loved using watercolours. He told me about his evolution and growth as an artist, about having to get over failures and accept that making bad work is part of being a good artist. Most importantly, he’s very much about encouraging people to re-think what the role of an artist is or what their place is in the cultural fabric of society.

“Definitely I can see an alignment of my values and those of No Exist or Witching Hour or QuebékisŤanz,” Ling said. “All those people are definitely who ‘get’, per se, what I do and they understand the value of trying to do things differently just for the change. I want to be where that is being done. I don’t want to be doing something that’s just some money-making motion, I want to do something that’s about tearing all of that down and trying to get people to reconsider what a show is, what a painter is, everything. Because those are things that I found really helpful to think about when I started painting. It feels good to be a part of something like that.”

Ferrari also hails from elsewhere, having lived in Toronto just before moving here in May. He met Max Posthoorn (aka Nothinge) and they decided to start making intense electronic music together in unconventional or alternative spaces. He was drawn to working with Michael Noom and Witching Hour primarily because of the trust and freedom he is afforded. But he also found that some of his ideas align with the things Noom has put forward.

“I don’t know how much I agree with every single thing he says,” Ferrari said, “but I do know that down at the basis of this, he’s trying to deconstruct the system as it is already and that’s exactly where No Exist is coming from. It’s trying to dismantle these concrete ideas and preconceived notions of how music should be or how we should live. So Max and I are trying to explore this new-found black void, this empty canvas and find new ways of doing things and I believe that’s what Witching Hour is trying to achieve as well. That basic idea is similar so now we’re joining forces and we’ll see what we come up with.”

10393750_811311188901509_9009049144881649170_nThe biggest challenge is really convincing people to take a lot of what they know and what they’re comfortable with and throwing it out the window. It’s not enough to create a space where people can feel free of judgment from others; people need to free themselves from their own self-criticisms and fears.

“If you want to be able to create new things or change the pattern of, or the process of art, the first thing you need to do is accept awkwardness and uncomfortable-ness,” Ferrari said. “To develop, to grow you need to accept these things. That’s what we want to do on the 8th, we hope that everyone gives in to that reality.”

Witching Hour Full Moon Halloween Party: Collision of Dimensions takes place tonight, October 8 at the Rialto Theatre. Doors open at 8:30 p.m., $15.

Photos by Bruno Guérin courtesy of Witching Hour.

So many shows this week! Get to it.

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 4

CKUT presents: Squalor + Cheap Wig + Balltripper @ Cabaret Playhouse

Squalor’s experimental noisy sludge + fuzzy lo-fi wailers Cheap Wig + the psychedelic stoner punk of Balltripper = a good time.

Show starts at 9 p.m., $7.

Skurge + Feefawfum @ Barfly

Do you like your thrash with a fair amount of free jazz thrown in? Yeah, that’s what I thought.

Show starts at 10 p.m., $7.

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 5

Castle + Buffalo Theory + Tunguska Mammoth + Abyssed + Near Grey + Watcher @ Foufounes Électriques

San Francisco’s Castle are great and all but there are some solid openers representing Montreal here. Get there early not to miss Watcher and Near Grey.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m., $10 via Xtrem Productions or at the door.

Golden Tombs + The Hydrothermal Vents @ Casa del Popolo

Man, Golden Tombs are such a trip to see live. Go get lost in their cinematic psych-influenced spaghetti western-meets-folk.

Show starts at 9 p.m., $6.

La Forêt rouge (cassette launch) + The Crib Death of the Un-Cool + Goddard x Pelchat @ 185 Van Horne

La Forêt rouge was formed in 2002 by Olivier D’Amours (GGRIL, Monocytes) and David Dugas Dion (ex-CRABE, David and the Woods, Gens Chrétiens) and made long improvisational compositions influenced by psychedelic post-rock. They were ahead of their time and then, after a brief existence, the band went on an indefinite hiatus. They are back and will be releasing a new cassette on Montreal label Cuchabata Records. Supporting them are The Crib Death of the Un-Cool — made up of Sam Shalabi and Chris Burns, two legends of the Montreal underground improv/experimental scene — and free jazz/noise duo made up of James Goddard (Public Transit, Skin Tone) and Alex Pelchat (Shining Wizard, Drøm Før Du Dør).

Show starts at 9 p.m.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 6

A Devil’s Din + Balltripper @ Barfly

Psych-rockers A Devil’s Din and Balltripper both lost their gear and jam space to a fire recently and are putting on this show (with borrowed gear) to help raise funds to replace what they’ve lost. For those who’d like to help out but can’t make it to the show, they are accepting donations through money transfer at adevilsdin@gmail.com.

Show starts at 6 p.m., PWYC.

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 7

Andrew Sisk presents The Passing of the Buffalo + Aim Low @ Casa del Popolo

I will let the event description speak for itself here: In the spring of 2011, Andrew Sisk scanned the stacks of a used bookstore and spotted the thin, aged spine of an antique book titled The Passing of the Buffalo. Published in 1916 in Vancouver, the prologue caught Sisk’s eye as it spoke of the fate of one of North America’s first natural resources, the wild buffalo. Through the book’s prologue, five acts and epilogue, the author details the rapid decline of the buffalo in a beautifully poetic and educated tone from behind the mysterious pen-name, Buckskin. Its verses reveal a warning for our time and a beauty long forgotten.

Sisk was inspired to spread the book’s message through music and pay homage to a great work.

Show starts at 8 p.m., $8.

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 8

Witching Hour Full Moon Halloween Party: Collision of Dimensions @ Theatre Rialto

This sounds like it’s going to be totally crazy. Witching Hour have made a name for themselves throwing parties that include many kinds of media and other more unconventional activities like yoga and meditation. There’s always a live music component — usually electronic DJs and bands — as well as live painting and film screenings. Marie Davidson headlines this edition curated by No Exist and QuebékisŤanz.

Doors open at 8:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10 in advance at Phonopolis, X20 and Cheap Thrills; $12 at the door.

suoni per il popolo

Suoni per il Popolo, Montreal’s premier experimental music festival, has been dedicated to showcasing the weird, the fringe, the avant-garde and the just plain out-there for over ten years. Part of their mandate is to dissolve musical borders and genres and to promote a culture of collaboration. The result is a truly diverse collection of performances with some surprising combinations. This year’s festival runs from June 4 to June 22 and includes workshops and art exhibits as well as nightly musical performances.

Today we’re presenting only a small sample of musical acts participating in the festival but you can see the full calendar here.

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 4

Crosss + Sheer Agony + Shitsu @ La Vitrola

Crosss — Halifax-born, Toronto-based — blend elements of metal, sludge, doom, psychedelia and grunge. Going over to the dark side can be overwhelming if you’re not already into that but Crosss extend a sweet invitation and gently pull you in. They’re joined by the unabashedly poppy Sheer Agony and new Montreal punk band Shitsu.

Show starts at 9 p.m., $6 at the door.

THURSDAY, JUNE 5

USA Out Of Vietnam + Public Animal + Marie Davidson @ La Sala Rossa

It feels like they’ve been around forever but USA Out Of Vietnam will be launching their debut album Crashing Diseases and Incurable Airplanes Thursday. Blending elements of drone, dream pop and psych, the band favours lush harmonies and infectious melodies and takes the time to build them up properly. Toronto garage rock band Public Animal and electronic pop songstress Marie Davidson open up the show.

Show starts at 8:30 p.m., $8 in advance through Suoni per il Popolo or $10 at the door. 

FRIDAY, JUNE 6

Steve Bates & Seijiro Murayama + Sam Shalabi & Stefan Christoff @ Casa del Popolo

Montrealer Steve Bates is an audio/visual artist whose work often explores our relationship with time. He also runs The Dim Coast, a space dedicated to experiments with sound. Seijiro Murayama is a Japan-based percussionist who focuses on improvisation and electroacoustic, conceptual compositions. They first played together at the legendary Rhiz club, Vienna’s go-to venue for experimental electronic music. The duo are joined by Sam Shalabi — composer, guitarist and oud player (Land of Kush and Shalabi Effect) — and Stefan Christoff — pianist, journalist and activist. Their work is a mix of Western free jazz improvisation and makam, a system of melody types used in Turkish classical music.

Show starts at 8:30 p.m., $12 at the door or online via Suoni per il Popolo

MONDAY, JUNE 9

Parquet Courts + Tyvek + Protomartyr + Heat @ Il Motore

Brooklyn-based weirdo-punk band Parquet Courts have been steadily rising in popularity since they broke onto the scene in 2010. Sunbathing Animal, their third album, drops today.

Show starts at 9 p.m., $15 at the door or online via Suoni per il Popolo.

TUESDAY, JUNE 10

Die Like A Dog Trio (Brötzmann, Parker, Drake) @ La Sala Rossa

It’s been 12 years since the last Die Like A Dog performance, back when the group was a quartet. This time around, German free jazz legend Peter Brötzmann is joined by double-bassist William Parker and percussionist Hamid Drake.

Show starts at 8 p.m., $28 at the door or online via Suoni per il Popolo.

FRIDAY, JUNE 13

Ought + Avec le soleil sortant de sa bouche + Harsh Reality @ Casa del Popolo

Ought released their debut full-length album, More Than Any Other Day, via Constellation Records this past April and have since received widespread critical acclaim. They are joined by no-wave, afro-beat, trance-pop outfit Avec le soleil sortant de sa bouche and experimental noise band Harsh Reality. Read Pamela Fillion’s interview with Ought.

Show starts at 8:30 p.m., $10 at the door or online via Suoni per il Popolo.

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 18

Omar Souleyman + d’Eon + Nouveau Zodiaque @ La Sala Rossa

Omar Souleyman‘s story is the stuff of legends and I won’t do it justice in three lines of description that I’ve confined myself to here. Basically, he’s a Syrian artist whose sound blends traditional Middle Eastern folk music, Shaabi (a form of working-class Egyptian street music) and electronic elements. He built up his fame performing at weddings throughout the Middle East, recording over 500 cassettes in the process. He was picked up by North American label Sublime Frequencies and released his first studio album, Wenu Wenu, produced by Four Tet’s Kieran Hebden.

Show starts at 8:30 p.m., $25 at the door or online via Suoni per il Popolo.

SATURDAY, JUNE 21

Jerusalem In My Heart + Morphosis + Charles Cohen @ Usine C

Jerusalem In My Heart live is a totally immersive audio/visual experience. The group makes modern experimental Arabic music, blending traditional sounds and melodies with contemporary electronic elements.

Show starts at 8 p.m., $15 at the door or online via Suoni per il Popolo.

Brahja Waldman's Quintet

What’s that? You wanna go see some shows this week? Well get to it.

FRIDAY, MAY 30

EM15

This year, MUTEK teamed up with Elektra to celebrate both festivals’ 15-year anniversaries and the result is EM15. The festival wraps up this weekend so be sure to catch a free event at the Musée d’art contemporain featuring Markus Floats, Santoz, Leon Louder, Bataille Solaire, Hugues Clément, Marie Davidson, Processor. Check their schedule for more events.

Most nighttime events start at 10 p.m., ticket info here.

Static Gold @ Cabaret Lion d’Or

Funk and swing collide into a dance party tonight when Static Gold launch their debut album Speaking Easy.

Show starts at 9 p.m., $13 at the door.

Brahja Waldman’s Quintet + Sam Shalabi, Anthony von Seck and Alexander MacSween @ Resonance Café

Brahja Waldman’s Quintet launch Sir Real Live, a vinyl recorded live at Resonance Café last August.

Doors open at 8:30 p.m.; $6, $8 includes download code, $15 includes vinyl. 

Bearmace + Yardlets + Melted Faces + Hiroshima Shadows @ La Vitrola

Show starts at 10:30 p.m., $6 with some proceeds going to Sun Youth.

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 4

Suoni per il Popolo: Crosss + Sheer Agony + Maica Mia + Shitsu @ La Vitrola

Show starts at 9 p.m., $6.

THURSDAY, JUNE 5

Suoni per il Popolo: USA Out of Vietnam + Public Animal + Marie Davidson @ La Sala Rossa

Doors open at 8:30 p.m., $8 in advance via Suoni per il Popolo or $10 at the door. 

Fringe Fest: APigeon + Girls In Uniform @ Divan Orange

Doors open at 8:30 p.m.; tickets cost $10 and are available at Divan Orange, Atom Heart, l’Oblique, Cheap Thrills and online via Indie Montreal.

B-17 + UUBBUURRUU + The Disraelis @ l’Escogriffe

Doors open at 9 p.m., $5.