Videotape spooling forward
Adam Saikaley is taking a left turn with Videotape, the sparse, fuzz-rock trio featuring himself and two other former members of As the Poets Affirm, Ryan Patterson and Nathan Gara.
They play their second show tomorrow. The Poets, a sixpiece that mastered whooshy instrumental largesse within the style of indie rock, broke up last summer after seven years and four albums — the last one is still sitting on a computer waiting to be pressed.
Known for their long song titles, even longer songs, and a torchy set that warmed up small stages, the band had great traction with fans and the departure seemed poorly timed — not that any time was good for its end.
The breakup came just after the band played a huge stage at Ottawa Bluesfest and after radio started to take an interest. When asked, every member floated a version of “we were bored playing the same style of music.” The answer still holds, Saikaley says, though recent tensions over the canned fourth album are dividing the band — literally.
The other three members of As the Poets Affirm have begun jamming, says guitarist Gary Udle, with the intention of forming a band. “Half the group that is not their thing (Videotape) would very much like to release an album,” Udle says.
Saikaley says other members can’t see spending the money to press an album they won’t be touring and want to give it away on the Internet. It remains in dispute.
While that sits, Videotape is spooling forward, celebrating a dead medium in every way. The band, rolling in the sonic glory of bands like The Jesus & Mary Chain and My Bloody Valentine, recorded an 11-song album called
My Favourite Thing on analog tape that they plan to release on vinyl later this year. Saikaley calls it a return to simplicity and a chance for him to write lyrics about relating after years of honing compositions that emphasized structure and space.
In fact, Videotape is positively slumming it, compared to The Poets, using crappy guitars, two chords and plenty of distortion and delay for a real off-therails feel. The trio recorded the album over reading week with producer Dave Draves. To get a continuous fuzz tone, they put a cinder block on the grand piano pedal and sat a microphone over the piano’s strings. In the same room as the amp, the piano would consistently hum, picking up reverberations bouncing off the guitars. That sound gives the album continuity
Saikaley says a small band is efficient, with only three heads to consult, instead of six, and he’s noticing an inclination. Videotape is working on a Montreal-Toronto corridor tour with two other trios, The Balconies and Sister Suvi — offshoots of the larger bands Jetplanes of Abraham and Islands.
Videotape opens for Immaculate Machine and Ladyhawk tomorrow at Zaphod Beeblebrox, 27 York St., 8 p.m., $12.
The Double Pumpers play two CD release shows: tomorrow with Bionic and Mad Parish and Saturday with C’Mon and Starvin’ Hungry.
The DP’s Paul “Yogi” Granger says The Double Pumpers booked in twice to compensate for being in a small venue. The metal-rock propulsion comes alive on the trio’s third disc called Old Gold, which is being released on CD and vinyl. Both shows take place at the Dominion Tavern, 33 York St., 9 p.m., $12 each night.
Jeff Meleras, singer-songwriter, criminal lawyer and sometime Jupiter Ray Project jammer releases his second album called The Cottage Sessions this weekend. Meleras gathered pals from JRP and the Souljazz Orchestra for a few days of binging and writing in Val des Monts in October 2006, followed by a few tweaks in Jason Jaknunas’s studio. The open-air vibe is all over this disc that documents long days and churned-up memories. See Meleras with Jack Pelletier and Shannon Ross of JRP tomorrow at Irene’s, 885 Bank St., with Jump Inc. 9 p.m., $8.
One-man rasta-soul-rock band Marc Charron plays a hometown tour closer show to- morrow. The Ottawa songwriter, who is also part of the band Lure, is looking forward to the post-tour decompression.
“This tour was by far my best juggling act,” he says. His car broke down in the middle of the Rockies just before a run of seven shows in seven days in five different towns leaving him searching for a ride and a good mechanic. See him at the Live Lounge, 1261⁄
2 York St., tomorrow. He opens the club’s indie session with Pat Robitaille and Acrobat. 9 p.m., $8.
Ninety Pounds of Ugly, the side project of Greg “Lefty McRighty” Harris, plays the Elmdale Tavern for a night called “The Mechanicsville Horror”— the posters of which are a play on The Amityville Horror book cover (though, technically, the tavern is in Hintonburg). Along with guitarist/vocalist Harris, the band is singer Patsy Clash (Liz Bergeron), bassist Stand-Up Steve (Steve Donnelly) and guitarist Pistol Pete Z. Dimov.
The band plans a summer release for its album, tentatively titled The Bloody Show. See them Saturday with Oshawa’s The Stables. 1084 Wellington St., 9 p.m., $5.
The Bible All-Stars host an Easter Debauch-Fest at the Mercury Lounge, 56 Byward Market, Sunday (9 p.m., $10) with Max Cossette of the Sick Sick Sicks. The cowpunk heathen heroes are working on a new album, tentatively titled A Honky Tonk Life.
Montreal reared, ’80s-tributing rock bot DJ duo Chromeo sails into the Capital Music Hall (128 York St., 9 p.m., $25) with guests Let’s Go to War and DJ Drastik. Due to demand — tickets sold out a month in advance — the show has been moved from its original venue, Babylon.
Hotly hyped Toronto R&B gal Zaki Ibrahim — who’s been called an “urban Feist” plays Zaphod Beeblebrox with The Key Components tonight, 9 p.m., $12.
Party at the National Gallery tonight: Artsparks is a night of music and art. Tour the Joe Fafard exhibit, dance to the Hilotrons and DJ Teknobrat and create a sculpture in clay or metal. 380 Sussex Dr. All ages, 7-11 p.m., $10.
The Flaps and The Empiricals pile on the stage of The Elmdale Tavern at the same time for a kicking, instrumental band duel tomorrow, 10 p.m., $10 .
Team Canada, the Montreal DJ duo, has a sub-crew called The Eh! Team which features Ottawa DJ Illo (Ian Lloyd). Team Canada plays a re-scheduled date here this weekend. They were due here in February until Paris Hilton personally requested them to play her birthday party in Vegas and we got shafted for the heiress.
The music mashers call their tunes a “fusion of classic and contemporary edits to create a major reaction.” Track names are drawn from original song titles. Get down to Dancin’ Black Dog or Knife to the Izzo. The Team Canada DJs play Helsinki, 15 George St., Saturday, 10 p.m., $7 before midnight. Tonight:
The Habit plays Café Dekcuf, 221 Rideau St., upstairs with Glenn Nuotio, 9:30 p.m., $7. Mariposa, The Postage Stamps, The Weather Station Band and Spygirl play the Black Sheep Inn, 753 Riverside Dr., Wakefield, 8:30 p.m., $10. Tomorrow: Wil plays the Black Sheep Inn, Distant Society and Benefit of a Doubt play Maverick’s, 221 Rideau St., 9 p.m., $10. Andy Maize and Josh Finlayson of The Skydiggers play the Black Sheep Inn with Claire Jenkins, 8:30 p.m., $14. Saturday:
Caribou, a.k.a. Dan Snaith, plays Babylon with a full band, 9 p.m., $18. Brock Zeman hosts a birthday bash at the Black Sheep Inn with Brendan Flynn & the Terrible Liars and The Brothers Chaffey, 9 p.m., $10. Grimskunk, Drillpoint and Universal Habit play Barrymore’s, 323 Bank St., 9 p.m., $12. Captain Foxy and Hollowtip Hearts play Irene’s, 9 p.m., $6. Owen, Casey Baker & The Buffalo Sinners and Paper Rival play Zaphod Beeblebrox, 8 p.m., $12. Sunday:
The Lucky Songs singer’s circle takes place at the Black Sheep Inn (4 p.m., all ages, $10) with Andrea SimmsKarp, Kaya Fraser, Jamie Anderson, Sharon Cardiff and others. Monday:
The Black Halos host Easter Monday Mayhem at Zaphod Beeblebrox with The Mighty Eagle Band, 9 p.m., $12. Today is the Day, Psyopus, Fuck the Facts and Complete Failure play the Rainbow Bistro, 76 Murray St., all ages, 7 p.m., $14.
The members of Videotape — Adam Saikaley, Nathan Gara and Ryan Patterson — bring their sparse fuzz rock to Zaphod Beeblebrox tomorrow night.