STREAM: Pony Girl – 'Candy'

Folktronica is the kind of genre-mash that you think is a terrible idea until you hear it work. 

With "Candy", the third track on the new LP Foreign Life from Ottawa's Pony Girl, it works so well because the mash creates an atmosphere instead of stealing the show. Its form is like a vaccum holding two voices in unison. Like the tinfoil spaceman album art, there's a kind of weightlessness to it. The song is built around some acoustic guitar strumming, but it's the synth underneath, adding all its texture, that makes the song.

With a six-piece band, this restraint is all the more interesting.

Foreign Life is out Nov. 7 on So Sorry Records.

STREAM: Vogue Dots - "Way With Silence"

"Way With Silence" from New Brunswick-based synth-pop duo Vogue Dots moves along at a dreamy, dancey pace until the low end shows up for a minute of darkness.

The project started in Belle Isle, a tiny island by the northern tip of Newfoundland. It's where "Way With Silence" was recorded, the first track on their new Mauka EP coming out October 21 on Montreal-based Indica Records.

Here they are with a full band playing "Mercy", filmed this summer in Montreal.

STREAM: Blush - 'I' EP


Stream the new EP from local trio Blush here or download it for $7 from their Bandcamp page. "My life is all about sex and money" sings Oussama Laghzaoui ironically in "Color Television". It's an EP of dreamy pop tunes about romance and loneliness.

Blush are playing Chez Boris tonight with She Divides and Kieran Blake. So grab on cassette at the show if you're into physical possessions.

STREAM: Boyhood - "amaryllis killis"

Here's "amaryllis killis" by Boyhood, arty pop experimenters who played the Ottawa Explosion showcase at l'Esco during POP Montreal this year. It's off their latest release bits n' bobs, which starts off with what could be categorized as a few "songs" before things get a little more fragmented (not like this record begins all sheen pop or anything).

They make abstract lo-fi tunes, synthier than their fellow Bruised Tongue tape aficionados Roberta Bondar (read an interview with them here), grooving along to a drum machine for a bunch of swaying Ottawans and curious Montrealers. The guy rocking the Korg was either completely engrossed in his two-note lines or bored as hell — for the few songs I saw he never looked up to give me an idea.

Though this was the Ottawa Explosion show at POP, Boyhood were only one of two bands from the capital city (along with The Yips), the rest of the lineup being filled out with Nap Eyes and Monomyth from Halifax, Strange Attractor from Sudbury and the violent punk rock of Calgary's Hag Face (read about their show at the Craft Singles showcase here).

STREAM: Celestial Shore - "Hour Minute"

One of the most interesting bands I stumbled across this year at POP Montreal was Brooklyn-based Celestial Shore. The trio tried to jump the shark with every song, and while that might seem like exhausting listening, it created a unique (and highly-structured) framework for their guitar-driven pop songs. There was nothing stiff about their live show either, despite all the time changes and harmonies. They all looked pretty young — I think their potential won me over as much as their set did.

Here's "Hour Minute", off their record 10x.

Kurvi Tasch stand 'On Firm Ground' with debut LP

Kurvi Tasch are releasing their new album On Firm Ground tonight at La Sala Rossa with Archery Guild, Maylee Todd and Baked Goods, and you can stream the whole thing here via their Bandcamp page before the show. They'll be giving away a limited number of posters with download codes to get the record, and once those are gone they'll have download codes for PWYC.

The local three-piece recorded with Freelove Fenner's Peter Woodford, and Richard White from The Besnard Lakes did the mastering at Breakglass Studios. Singer/guitarist Alex Nicol picks away in a blanket of reverb, giving the record a dreamy feel even as it hits moments of intensity, like the bass & drums-dominated "Fractured Lens" and the slow-building title track. It's a consistent but unpredictable go at their first proper record.