Pkew Pkew Pkew (gunshots) are having more fun than your band

 Talking about a band's name is usually a pretty lame way to start an interview, but with Toronto-based sloppy drunk pop punk 6-piece Pkew Pkew Pkew (gunshots) the question had merit. How would you pronounce that name exactly?

"The way that we intended it is they would go 'pkew! pkew! pkew!' and then just say 'gunshots' as boringly as possible. But people call us whatever they want. It depends on their level of enthusiasm," says singer/guitarist Mike Warne.

Most bands don't put sound effects into their band name, but Pkew Pkew Pkew (gunshots) are probably having more fun than most bands.

"We started the band as a joke. Me and the guitar player Jordan drew a picture of me and him on stage with Brodie [singer Brodie Matthias Bocelli] being the manager on the side of the stage. It was supposed to be a joke where we played synths and stuff, but we decided to play real instruments," he says.

"We weren't very good at synths."

Some of the guys had been in bands together before, but they had all worked together and knew each other for years. The band is full of guitars and they all sing. Every word is meant to be screamed back at the band live.

"A couple of us had been in bands before and they weren't fun. There was the work that is being in a band. This has the work, but it's still like hanging out," Mike says.

"We just hang out and drink, and now we hang out and drink and practice."

Their sound will be immediately welcomed to anyone who lived off of the Fat Wreck Chord punk of the '90s and early 2000s. Overtop of all that the lyrics usually revolve around how their best days are behind them, but we're going to get piss drunk with our friends so life's okay.

"I never played synth, it was fun to play around with, but we were never going to get good at them. Guitar is my instrument. I got a guitar when I was in grade seven or eight, and the only thing I listened to was Punk-O-Rama 1, 2, 3, 5, all those ones. We just started [writing] songs like when we were starting music."

It only makes sense to go back to the music of your youth when you're trying to face the future, bottle in hand.

"It's one of those things where it's easier to take seriously when we're making a lot of jokes. If you're in an indie band you're writing about emotional, serious things," says Mike. "The focus is more on having fun than making the most artful recording."

Pkew Pkew Pkew (Gunshots) play le Divan Orange Sept. 18 at 6:00 p.m.

The craftsman behind CROSSS

The mystic indie metal of CROSSS is coming to Montreal before taking its new form in Toronto at the end of the year.

Originally from Halifax, singer/guitarist Andy March credits his interest in things spiritual in part to his time at a Shambhala Buddhist high school. It may also be where his chant-like vocals come from, moving over slow, heavy guitar riffs and relentless drumming.

March has just finished mixing the follow-up to last year’s heavy haunt Obsidian Spectre. The new record was tracked on familiar territory, during night sessions in Halifax’s Echo Chamber studio throughout 2014.

Like on Obsidian Spectre, he’s doing all the production work, from the engineering to the mixing to the mastering.

“It just takes forever. It kind of drives a person crazy trying to engineer and mix and master a record, and I think it probably dilutes its meaning, having to pass through the same brain so many times,” says March, who started CROSSS in 2008 in Montreal.

It’s common practice to have someone else master your record, but mastering is expensive. So March spent months training his ears to notice the minutiae that mastering engineers make their living from. The resulting LP was something you could crank without being overwhelmed, giving the songs more space, in the ‘70s style of recording.

“That one I felt went a little too far, it’s a little too gentle and comfortable. This record hits you a little harder, it’s not as easy listening,” says March. “It’s kind of in the middle, it’s not going to sound like a Ty Segall record, but it’s not going to sound like a Black Sabbath record either.”

He’s going for something heavier, with lyrics that are a little more relatable — while retaining the dark, druidic quality that makes a CROSSS record feel part grunge and part sacrament.

The record will be a kind of second half to Obsidian Spectre, and is expected to come out in the late winter or early spring.

The latest release from CROSSS is “Eye Seance”, one of two songs recorded in the latest Echo Chamber sessions written by Nathan Doucet, who plays drums in CROSSS and also plays with Heaven for Real.

Doucet and bassist Ryan Allen have been the main band for the past two years, but after touring this fall with a temporary lineup March will have a new band based in Toronto — with Mikołaj Gajewski on bass, and Kris Bowering on drums.

“Eye Seance” came out last month on Ottawa-based Bruised Tongue Records, typically a cassette-only operation. But thanks to a deal with March when he was making a hasty exit from Hamilton, Bruised Tongue has put out a handful of lathe cut records using Andy’s record lathe.

The track is on a split with “Young and EZ” by Toronto-based Soupcans. Bruised Tongue co-founder Pierre Richardson cut 100 records with Andy’s lathe, available through Bruised Tongue.

Lathe cut records are cut using a lathe (surprise), an old machine that makes impressions on rotating objects. Before tape recording, electric lathes were used to cut records onto plastic.

“I didn’t know where I was going to put my machine,” says March. “I have a few requirements, because it’s kind of big, and it makes a bit of a smell and uses a lot of power.”

He was able to make an arrangement with Richardson to store his record lathe in a back room of Gabba Hey!, a rehearsal and living space in central Ottawa. In exchange for storage and being able to come down a few days each month to work with the lathe, Andy showed Pierre how to cut records.

“The technology is still ancient, but there’s an online community of people and we were all experimenting over the last three years, and it just got to a place where it sounds really good, it’s consistent and doesn’t wear out,” says March.

Lathe cut records are made one at a time, so they’re only really ideal for rare and short-run releases. They’re known for inconsistent sound and short lifespan, but March says his records can be played on repeat for days on end without any change in quality.

Sandwiching art between two thin pieces of plastic, he creates his own short-run picture discs.

“There’s just like a lot of variables and there ended up being some pretty intense modifications to the machine [involved],” says March. Along with other experimenters around the world, March found using hard, smooth plastic and adjusting the lathe would lead to more reliable cuts.

“A couple of the developments I discovered by just staring at the machine for hours and hours,” he laughs.

“I’m a bit of a closet inventor, I’ve worked on a couple things that I’ve tried to bring to market, and it was really exciting to see it take off. I kind of have a way to make money off it which is pretty amazing.”

He’s working out an arrangement to bring the lathe to Toronto, where it would be moved to June Records, March offering his lathe services through the store.

“I’m pretty excited about it, it’s been a long time since I’ve had a job,” says March. “I’m excited to see if I can popularize it a little bit.”

CROSSS play Sept. 18 at Club Lambi (Telephone Explosion Showcase) and Sept. 19  at Brasserie Beaubien (Craft Singles Showcase).

Under the microscope with Nick Zammuto

Nick Zammuto is a musical mad scientist disguised as a luddite, living with his family in a wood stove-heated house he built himself in Vermont. He tinkers with new sounds and inventions away from the distractions — and insane rent — of New York.

Zammuto is best known for his genuinely unclassifiable work with The Books — a two piece band he formed with cellist Paul de Jong in Brooklyn at the turn of the millennium, characterized by its heavy use of found audio material, from long-forgotten voicemails to clips from courtroom TV shows.

Since The Books called it quits at the beginning of 2012, he's been hard at work — releasing Anchor, the second LP with his new band Zammuto, Sept. 2.

“[The Books] died before its time, at least from my perspective. I was trying to start from scratch something totally new, and it had this frantic energy to it,” says Zammuto, about the environment he wrote his first “solo” record in.

But after playing over 100 shows following the first Zammuto LP, that frantic energy has grown into more thoughtful, fully-formed songs on Anchor. The record marks a whole new way of doing music for Zammuto — nearly all analogue, with a band shaping the sounds instead of the samples that defined The Books.

It's especially the connection he has with drummer Sean Dixon that has redefined the way Zammuto writes — the two quickly bonding over their love of polyrhythms. Dixon would come up to Zammuto's home for days at a time, recording infinite drum loops, attacking the beat from different angles until the right texture emerged.

“I don’t think on my feet particularly well, when there’s too much going on in a room I kind of shut down. I think that’s why I’m drawn to the more isolated, scientific kind of approach,” says Zammuto.

“I think of my studio as a microscope, where I can really focus on the details. Let the foreground dissolve into the background in a way.”

His studio is his little refuge, joking that once he comes inside his home with his three kids he can't have a complete thought.

“I kind of think of it like the TARDIS in Doctor Who,” he says of his studio — which still looks like an old shed from the outside. “It’s become more like an Apollo mission in there, I can reach 400 knobs from where I sit. I can go anywhere at any time, it’s pretty fun.”

He completely redid the studio for the recording of Anchor, in part with help from an Indiegogo campaign to fund the purchase of vintage analog gear. Playing with a full band awakened an interest in controlling sound in real time.

“A visceral experience is what I’m going for. I feel I’ve done a lot of intellectual music in the past, and I suppose there’s always going to be that layer to it, but I really like rock shows, it turns out,” he says.

“The idea of really being able to saturate a space with sound just really appeals to me these days.”

Nick started playing guitar in high school, but it was only after he got his first computer in the late ‘90s that he started writing music. Playing with a drummer has now changed his whole perspective.

“It’s tremendous. I just feel lucky to be able to play off people. It’s such a rush,” says Zammuto. “The Books was such an unexpected success [...] until I started playing music with a drummer I didn’t understand what live music was.”

Anchor begins with a literal departure from relying on samples. As album-opener “Good Graces” starts, a flurry of voices fade into the background, leaving Nick's voice (albeit sometimes processed) the only one left on the record.

He's trying out several new sounds on Anchor, from the new wave pop of “IO” to the pensive “Sinker”, sounding more like their former tourmates Explosions in the Sky.

“I can’t repeat myself. It makes me ill if I feel like I’m doing the same thing I’ve done before,” he says. “Really I wanted to perfect my recording process, so rather than reaching into other people’s recorded material for the perfect sounds, to be able to generate them ourselves.”

An insatiable appetite for learning new musical approaches may not be the best way to find a huge audience, but it's how Zammuto needs to work. And the fact that his Indiegogo campaign sought to raise $10,000 — but went on to raise over $30,000 — means that he has enough people supporting him in whichever direction he goes.

“[Crowdfunding] is bringing up a whole class of musicians in a way, and that’s really exciting to me. We can get away with a much smaller audience; a few people scattered in different cities around the world is enough,” says Zammuto.

“It changes the whole trajectory of my career — instead of having to be beholden to an industry that's all pretty jaded about music [...] and going through endless middlemen, getting a tiny fraction of the actual business that’s being done.”

Nick and his family try to keep their overhead as low as possible so they can put more money into their creative projects. They have a strict no-contractor rule — if they can’t do it themselves, they don’t do it.

They heat their home all winter with wood they chop themselves. Nick's wife grows most of their food. When we speak he’s just finished building a giant catapult for the “IO” video. Nick says it can launch a 10 pound rock 350 feet, but he’s betting he can make it go further.

“My neighbours are into it, they’re not worried about coming under siege or anything,” he jokes. “Having a giant canvas of 16 acres to work on is really nice.”

Zammuto plays Casa Del Popolo September 6 with Saxsyndrum.

Passovah Summer Fest preview: Smokes

Smokes are in the process of expanding, but this time they're looking to steer clear of 11-member jam bands.

Their sweat-inducing rock is rounded off with a little melodrama and a love of syncopation. Starting off as a guitar / violin duo three years ago, the band will play their first show as a four-piece tomorrow at the Piccolo Rialto as part of the Passovah Summer Fest.

Singer/guitarist Nick Maas and violinist Patrick Cruvellier moved to Montreal to study at McGill, but stayed for the music. They were first in a “crazy weird prog fusion band” called Bananafish, working together musically – and becoming roommates – since then.

“We needed to figure out what kind of band we wanted to make. We knew we wanted to play some rock and roll," Nick says. “I hadn’t sung in six years playing in bands, and I felt that I had a lot to say.”

Patrick started playing violin at age 6, but decided to move away from studying sheet music when moving to Montreal.

“I definitely have a passion for it, though I think I never fully connected with classical music," says Patrick, who played for years in orchestras and string groups. “I got kind of burnt out on it and realized I’d rather be playing music with my friends.”

They started playing with drummer Jeremy MacCuish two years ago, the two working on what would eventually become Smokes for a year before that.

MacCuish played drums in Parlovr, who signed to Dine Alone Records before going on hiatus last year.They met Parlovr singer/guitarist Louis David Jackson at a call centre (that happened to employ several musicians that they would eventually share the stage with) soon after leaving McGill.

They started rehearsing at the Torn Curtain, the practice space also used at the time by Parlovr.

“They were a huge influence for me, a really awesome band in Montreal at the time. We got to hear a lot of them, and we thought, man we’ve got to get him in our band,” Nick jokes.

Now adding Andrew Miller from The This Many Boyfriends Club on bass, they get to expand things a little more, and finally have someone to take care of the low end.

“It frees us up in some ways, now I don’t need to play power chords," says Nick.

“There are some great things about being a trio, it forces you to try different things," adds Patrick, "but there was a certain point that we realized a lot of what we want to be doing is playing high energy rock music. We realized sometimes we were dumbing down ideas just to fill out the frequency range.”

The band released the Unlucky EP last November with Dan Lagacé behind the board at Breakglass Studios and recorded it all live off the floor.

"[Lagacé] pushed us to do something we wouldn’t have done if it was just the three of us going into a studio," says Nick.

Now they’re working on a full-length with the opposite approach, doing the writing and recording over several months, at the Rosemont studio where Les Breastfeedersrecord their stuff, engineered and mixed by Marshall Vaillancourt (who plays in Archery Guildand No Aloha) and Miguel Marcil-Pitre.

They intend to release two songs this fall, with plans to release the album next summer.

As they grow their sound, they're trying to be ever-more concise. While Nick grew up in Milwaukee listening to jam bands like The Grateful Dead and Phish (hence Bananafish), he's now less about self-indulgence and more about structure.

“I used to have an instinctive backlash to short, poppy songs but I kind of grew out of that. Living here in Montreal there’s so much variety that I just decided to go to shows all the time, and as see much local music as I can," says Nick.

“[With] a lot of musical friends, some are making rock music, but it’s not the predominant [genre]. People are so supportive and it’s nice to get that cross-pollination."

Patrick also plays with the guys in Saxsyndrum (who both used to be in Bananafish), and also plays with Ohara, (who’s also playing the Piccolo Rialto tomorrow) and Year of Glad.

He's “the high-demand violinist, no one cares about guitar players,” jokes Nick.

“It’s not about the genre necessarily, we just hang out and go see each other’s shows. In a community where loud rock music isn’t really the focus it’s awesome to see people that are super supportive. If you’re passionate about it, it doesn’t really matter.”

Smokes play the Passovah Summer Fest with Frog Eyes, PS I Love You, Nanimal, CTZNSHP, Cat Pontoon, James Irwin and Ohara August 21 at the Piccolo Rialto.

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Kuato taps into the East Coast's dark history with 'The Great Upheaval'

When Halifax doomey post rock five-piece Kuato were looking for inspiration for their debut LP, it only made sense to draw from their surroundings.

“We’re a dark band, and this is super dark history, it’s something that’s around us all the time. It’s in the soil, it’s in the air, it’s just part of the energy [here],” says drummer Josh Pothier, who grew up going to Acadian schools in Nova Scotia.

The band’s first LP The Great Upheaval revolves around the history of Acadia, a former French colony that would eventually become Canada’s East Coast and parts of Quebec.

The record gets its name from the expulsion of Acadians from the region, ordered by the British in the middle of the 18th century.

“There are tons of weird, creepy, dark stories that I grew up with [...] we might as well draw from the darkest thing to ever happen in this region,” says Josh. “A lot of art dealing with this does it in a very folkloric manner, which is fine, [but] we saw an opportunity to do our own thing."

The Great Upheaval is the band’s first physical release outside of short runs of CDs sold at local shows in the Maritimes. They started writing back in 2011, but lineup changes delayed the material that would eventually make it on the LP.

Josh and guitarist Adam Toth have been playing together since 2009, with guitarists and bassists joining for months at a time in different iterations of Kuato.

“I like to think we’re sort of a cautious band. The first thing we did was write a 30-minute song, and I think we played it at a show or two, then scrapped it and wrote all-new material,” says Josh. “That’s sort of the motif of the band: go out and do some stuff, and then go back into hiding and emerge with something else.”

The only song on The Great Upheaval with lineage before the current roster is “Black Horizon,” the band opting to write new material instead of teaching old songs to the new guys. Josh’s playing drives things forward, often at a deliberate, swampy pace, but it’s the three guitars that fill in all the colour, their six-string fingerprints defining the moody post rock.

Being able to work with different players, even for a few months, helped shape what Kuato is – a band that relies heavily on listening to the live moment to determine what comes next. Now the lineup is filled out with guitarists Mike D’Eon and Darryl Smith and bassist Stephen MacDonald, with the writing now more collaborative than ever.

For five days they lived at the studio/venue Confidence Lodge in Riverport, Nova Scotia tracking the record live off the floor. Making a full-length record in five days might sound rushed, but it was a luxury for a band more used to banging out EPs in a matter of hours in Halifax’s Echo Chamber studio.

The sense of urgency, to get to the heavy stuff right away, has been replaced by a little more patience.

“When it came to the writing, we got a lot more interested in the space between the songs,” Josh says. “When we first started the band we were so excited playing together we were always getting to the heavy stuff as fast as we could.”

Not quite a concept record about the Acadian history, The Great Upheaval is more a product of its environment, inviting listeners to revel in its intertwining guitar work and doomey pace, to seek out the stories of a displaced people only if they want to.

“We didn’t want it to be forced, and we didn’t want to alienate anybody,” says Josh, adding that at first the band was thinking of adding voiceovers and traditional arrangements to represent the Acadian oral history.

“We wanted to make something you can learn about if you choose to go deeper but you didn’t need to know about to enjoy. I feel it’s a pretty fine line […] we wanted people to be able to draw their own conclusions from the art.”

Kuato plays Drones Club Saturday, August 9 with Zaum, The Great Sabatini and Special Noise.

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Hundred Waters place a flower in your Skrillex hair

The new ethereal sounds of Hundred Waters come from a more transient life, as the band realizes what it's truly like to be a full-time touring act.

For singer Nicole Miglis this means learning to live with being the centre of attention onstage, all eyes on her as she bares her soul to the crowd.

“I’ve learned to enjoy it more, I’ve gotten out of my shell a bit,” she says. “I’m still wrapping my head around what it means to perform music that I wrote.”

It's her voice that's the star here, either bathed in the band's production work or as the lone light in a digital vaccum. On their new LP The Moon Rang Like a Bell we're left clinging to every word.

“I’m a pretty shy person, so it’s not instinctive for me to get on a stage and do something, even though I love music and play it all the time and couldn’t do anything else,” she says.

“It can be so personal, you have to open up yourself so much, and I think there’s a human nature to close off sometimes, to not be too vulnerable.”

That vulnerability is tangible as Miglis delivers her lines in haunting syncopation, as the band rises and erodes around her. On The Moon Rang Like a Bell, every sequenced moment is scrutinized — lingering for no longer than it absolutely has to.

“They’re from a very emotional and personal place. I don’t think we could write them otherwise. That’s why we’re all drawn to it,” she says.

“It has to be fuelled by something real that’s happened in our lives or my life. Maybe that’s why hearing comparisons is so frustrating. You’re not thinking about all these people that the music is compared to, you’re thinking about what happened to you that made you write that song.”

And it's true that comparing Hundred Waters to another band is not so simple, with sounds ranging from (sorry Nicole) Aphex Twin to Joni Mitchell.

But the forest-nymph feel of their 2012 self-titled LP has grown into something different entirely, only sharing its flowing, layered structure — and Miglis' ghost-like vocal performance — with The Moon Rang Like a Bell. The flute often appearing on Hundred Waters, and really any acoustic instruments at all, are gone.

It's a product of the way they did their writing this time.

“Most of this music started in computers because that’s kind of the only instrument we had at the time,” says Miglis. “You’re constantly listening to it in different situations and filtering things out, so that’s maybe why it came out a bit more minimal.”

Their previous material, when singer / keyboardist Samantha Moss was still in the lineup, was recorded in their home / studio in Gainesville.

Instead of the creative incubation they were used to, they wrote The Moon Rang Like a Bell in short spurts on the road, now based in L.A. and with someone booking the shows for them.

“We were listening to this music all the time,” says Miglis. “If you’re writing in a van wearing headphones it can be very solitary. You have to try it out in different situations before you’ve finished it.”

And with access to all kinds of shiny new mics and studio space thanks to their record deal the with Skrillex-owned OWSLA label, the full potential of Miglis' voice is heard on this album — rich, warm and higher in the mix.

The result is pristine but not precious. The production is enough to make the OWSLA EDM crowd (that they've toured the continent with) salivate, while still feeling human at its core. It places some flowers in that Skrillex hair.

But despite the new studio access and label support, they're still doing the recording themselves. Bandmember Trayer Tryon mixed and produced the new LP.

Now on the second week of touring the new record, crowned with "Best New Music" from the three-pronged tastemakers and getting a rave review from the New York Times, more people are listening than ever before. Nicole says it's a humbling experience, and what's most important is doing the songs justice live by revisiting the moments that inspired her to write them.

“I think the goal in performance for me is staying in the moment as much as you can, which is kind of hard to talk about, it’s kind of like a blackout in a way,” she says.

“You’re focused completely on what you’re doing. It's all kind of meditative [...] Locking eyes with somebody in that moment and performing to them. Trying to stay true to what you’re singing about and to stay honest about it, to give as much of yourself as you can in that moment.”

Hundred Waters play Il Motore July 8 with Majical Cloudz. Stream The Moon Rang Like a Bell on Soundcloud.

Odonis Odonis to punk rock: Don't fear the synthesizer

Odonis Odonis lorem ipsum dolor sit amet. Photo Julian Rogochevsky

The latest release from Toronto dancey/noise/no wave revival trio Odonis Odonis could be called their new record, but that depends on how you're counting.

Dean Tzenos made Hard Boiled Soft Boiled five years ago while staying in Vancouver with Colin Stewart (who has recorded West Coast talent like Destroyer and Black Mountain), before their 2011 debut Hollandaze was made. Odonis Odonis didn't even exist when most of this LP was tracked.

“It’s a massive weight off my shoulders," says Tzenos, who sings and plays guitar and synth in the band. "There was so much complication. Is this going to come out? Is this good enough to come out?"

The original plan was to get the record out less than a year after 2011's Hollandaze LP. But their label, U.K.-based FatCat Records, didn't agree. So the record, with videos made and vinyl pressed, sat unopened for three years.

They eventually left FatCat, and put the record out themselves in April.

“I’m glad the reaction has been so positive to the record. I really wanted to make something timeless. I know that’s kind of dumb to say, but especially the way music is consumed now, I wanted to make something that would stay relevant,” says Tzenos.

Canadian music critics seem to agree with the timing at least; the new record is on the Polaris long list. It's out on Buzz Records, the Toronto label Tzenos runs with Ian Chai, Odonis Odonis bassist Denholm Whale and Jude from HSY.

They've only been running the label since putting out the Odonis Odonis Better EP last summer, but things are moving fast — they already have 10 releases only halfway through this year.

“The community was here before Buzz, but when the Buzz garage came around it really pulled together bands from different groups. We wanted to keep that alive,” says Tzenos. “I think all bands want to belong to a cool scene of bands that they like, and have a community. We’re definitely providing that, and trying to push Toronto globally.”

It's an environment that creates a breeding ground for a mix of different sounds, allowing for experimentation, the kind of risks that major labels won't take. What major would sign a band both as heavy and dancey as Odonis Odonis? Who would think that is a good idea?

It’s too original, therefore it's too risky. This is part of the reason why Dean is so excited for the success of his friends / habitual tourmates Metz. They're putting out their second LP with Sub Pop later this year.

“A lot of the time you see the wrong people getting a shot a the prize, that don’t really deserve it yet, who are way too green or whatever,” says Tzenos. “Metz were part of the Toronto scene for five years without a record, and they could have easily just stayed the hometown heroes."

When they started getting the attention they deserved, Metz was ready to deliver onstage. Anyone who has been to one of their shows knows their power to transform a crowd into a sweat-soaked, violent party.

“People were really coming out in droves to see what this band was about. When we hit the Bowery Ballroom and hit Psych Fest with these guys, it felt like we were putting Toronto on the map together, it was really exciting to be part of that,” says Tzenos.

Seeing that success, and the momentum carried by Buzz Records (who just released the debut LP from Greys) is ample reason to keep going.

“We’ve all been moving forward together,” says Tzenos. “All you need is someone to break through to kind of bring everybody on the label up to another level.”

It originally took a year for Dean to get a band together, not wanting to be another laptop artist nor a heavy indie rock band. Originally playing with Metz bassist Chris Slorach, they eventually found Jarod Gibson, who was into building a hybrid drum kit to do the production work justice onstage.

Live, along with Denholm's low end, they bridge the gap between punk and electronic, creating something altogether different. The new stuff that they've been playing lately (including in their opening slot for METZ at Ottawa Explosion Weekend two weeks ago), is a pretty good indication that things are only getting better.

“At the beginning we did try to use some drum machines, but man there was no feeling to that. It was feeling pretty dead and I didn’t want to come out of the gates like that,” says Tzenos.

“I wanted to blend those two worlds, between Metz and that [laptop artist] stuff, and make our own thing in the process. It’s heavy, it’s aggressive, but you’re there to dance and have a good time.”

There's no reason not to embrace all the new tools made available with digital production. For Odonis Odonis, sonically, and aesthetically, it's a nod back to no wave and industrial music, rejecting new wave pop before grunge took over everything.

“I think it’s dumb not to, it’s the future and it’s going to get crazier. What people can do with Ableton, I haven’t even cracked into that stuff yet. We’ll see how rock music transforms, but there’s only a certain number of times you can hear certain chords. When I hear punk music and hardcore music now, it’s really hard for me to be impressed by it in the same way,” says Tzenos.

“I don’t feel it’s moving any of the genres forward at all, they’re just cemented in this formula. With Odonis we’re trying to break those formulas. It might not make us as popular, but we’re going to try and break down some walls in the process.”

Odonis Odonis plays The Plant (185 Van Horne) June 27 with Zorch, Smokes and Saxsyndrum