Saturday, July 4, 2009

axis of conversation

i had another one of those nights where i went to see a band i never heard of with people i didn't really know...and was pleasantly surprised. i caught the Calgary band Axis of Conversation at my favourite venue Cafe Deux Soleils, and they were like nothing i have ever heard before. featuring a string section and some really fancy gadgets on top of the traditional rock band arrangement, they had a really eclectic style, a mix of Radioheady-rock/pop, Godspeed You Black Emporer sonic freakouts, breakbeats, rap verses, neatly arranged background vocals, and a few dance numbers as well. i really can't describe it.

four things i really like about the band:

1. where a normal band would carry around one synthesizer that makes many sounds, they seemed to carry the real deal. instead of using the strings patch on your casio, they had a cello and a violin. instead of using the vibes function, they had a real xylophone. and some pretty cool loop pedals and machines i can't even understand. also, the lead singer's one-year-old son's toy keyboard, about eight inches long.

2. the guitarist plays right handed guitars left-handed. not even re-stringing it. he just flips it over and plays everything upside down. this makes the normal chord you get on the downstroke inverted, a really interesting sound and style...

3. serious representation from Mother Asia. seeing an asian kid in an indie band is rare as a blue moon. seeing more than the one token asian person in the same something i have never seen in the toronto music scene. this band had three asian bros, that's half, all extremely awesome. the white people of the band were pretty cool too.

4. a very pregnant violinist. i hope some day i will tour across the continent carrying a baby in my womb. that baby will come out either really cool or really deaf.

on another note, i am meeting an awful lot of people from calgary here.