Where to find the heavy at Pop Montreal

Johnson picks the winners at Pop Montreal 2013.

facebookIf you notice that this column is heavy on the events, it’s because one of the best festivals in the city, Pop Montreal, gets underway on the 25th and keeps its ironclad grip on the city until the 29th. Although Pop Montreal remains a treat for me and has previously hosted some of my favourite shows of all time (Swans, mission of Burma, Hot Snakes), this year is a little light on the big names but still offers some goodies, mostly in the form of local bands. Now that I’ve given my annual reach-around to the folks at Pop, let’s get to the gigs:

Wednesday, Sept. 25: Now that “psychedelic” has officially replaced “angular” as the most overused word in rock writing, you can check out the real deal when the Legendary Pink Dots pull into town with Orbit Service and Red Mass at Petit Campus (57 Prince-Arthur E.).

Thursday, Sept. 26: Even though there are some great shows from touring bands hitting Pop, most of the bands I want to see are local. Another coup for the Montrealers at Pop Montreal will be when Colin Stetson, Tim Hecker and Bobo & Chris obliterate yer puny mind at the Rialto (5723 Parc). At Brasserie Beaubien (73 Beaubien E.), at 11 p.m., you can catch Marie Davidson, whose current EP on Holodeck is blowing my mind.

Friday, Sept. 27: Another local you’ll definitely want to catch is the droney, slow croon of Maica Mia. With a new record in the can and the Donald Trump of indie rock now manning the low end, this should prove to be a killer. Opening are Valleys and Big Brave at Church of St. John the Evangelist, aka the Red Roof (137 President-Kennedy).

Again, Montrealers grab Pop by the balls when T.O./ Montreal psych overlords Yamantaka // Sonic Titan attack the senses at Breakglass Studios (7250 Clark).

Saturday, Sept. 28: Before pop-punk was such a dirty word, there was one of L.A.’s greatest punk bands, the Descendents. You can catch their doc Filmage: The Story of Descendents/All at PHI Centre (407 St-Pierre).

The host of Vice’s Soft Focus as well as the man behind Nation of Ulysses, the Make-up, Chain and the Gang and more, Ian Svenonius, is hosting an evening with film, a reading and discussion at Quartiers Pop (3450 St-Urbain). ■


Current obsession: The current.org’s archived stream of Low’s “Do You Know How to Waltz?” live at rock the Garden 2013


See the rest of our Music Team’s Pop Montreal picks here

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