The musical portion of NXNE gets off to a somewhat slow start on Wednesday, but that’s not to say there isn’t plenty to see and hear.
The first real highlight of the night are Eternal Summers, a self-described dream-punk duo from the musical hotbed of Roanoke, Virginia of all places. While they may call themselves ‘dream-punk’, Eternal Summers are straight up dream pop, owing a lot to great 90s bands like Galaxie 500 or the oft-ignored Spinanes.
Catch Eternal Summers at The Drake Underground @ 10 PM.
Going down a much stranger path is Vancouver via Edmonton’s Mac DeMarco, who formerly performed under the name Makeout Videotape. DeMarco’s debut album Rock and Roll Night Club was released earlier this year and is a strong record, fusing together seemingly disparate styles. At times sounding like an underwater Elvis, others Lou Reed and others something entirely new, MDM can swing with the best of them. If you like the idea of a campy, gender-bending lo-fi Elvis you should check out Mac DeMarco.
Catch Mac DeMarco at The Drake Underground @ 11 PM.
Midnight presents a little bit of a conflict, with two acts gathering a lot of buzz performing. First up is the dreamy and depressing indie-pop of Porcelain Raft. Italian-born and now a New York resident, singer/songwriter Mauro Remiddi released his debut album, aptly titled Strange Weekend, earlier this year. The record is garnering acclaim from critics and a niche group of fans as well, this will be his first time in Toronto.
Catch Porcelain Raft at The Drake Underground @ 12 AM.
Also pumping out tunes at the midnight hour will be Union Duke, a Toronto 5 piece which produces very fun, high energy rockabilly with plenty of harmonies, foot-stomping and sing-alongs. Unsigned and yet to release a proper album, I’m looking forward to seeing if there’s a sufficient appetite for the awesome throwback style of this band. If you’re still unsure what they sound like, just listen to their song “Lonesome Me” below.
Catch Union Duke at Cadillac Lounge @ 12 AM.
Keeping the Canadian feel-goodness going are We Were Lovers who produce danceable tracks that are equal parts Bloc Party and Yeah Yeah Yeahs with a touch more synth and dreamy vocals. Whether or not the band’s name is an allusion to how the pair formed is best left to the imagination, all we know is their music is likely to get you dancing, with or without a lover of your own.
Catch We Were Lovers at The Boat @ 1 AM.
Did you know plenty of venues will have a 4AM last call throughout NXNE? So no yawning will be tolerated at Rich Kidd‘s set at The Rivoli. Rich Kidd has been making a strong name for himself recently in Toronto’s hip-hop scene, producing beats for acts as big as Shad and as small as his cousin, as well as MCing on some dope tracks himself.
Catch Rich Kidd at The Rivoli @ 2:35 AM