Congratulations to The Roots and Rhythm Remain for taking their show on the road this past weekend. Taking advantage of the holiday, the quartet hit Moncton’s MIME (Moncton Independent Music and Education) Festival as well as The Capital in Fredericton. This after taking Sydney by storm during ECMAs.
Wednesday is the new Saturday this week. With nothing yet on tap for Governor’s and The Upstairs Club, Maxwell’s Lounge is bringing in Southern Ontario’s The Ascot Royals. The pop rock five piece is making the all too rare trek to Newfoundland for shows in Cornerbrook and St. John’s, making the Cape Breton stop before hitting the boat. Joining the band at Maxwell’s will be local prog rock group Thought Machine, who are fresh off recording their debut full length cd Maiden Voyage. Having not yet taken in one of their sets, I spoke with a couple of people this weekend who have seen them and I got only glowing reviews.
Winnipeg’s Greg MacPherson launched his new cd Mr. Invitation last week. Raised in Sydney for the early part of his life, MacPherson still refers to Cape Breton as home whenever we speak. The new cd, his first on Winnipeg based Smallman Records (Moneen, Propagandhi, Comeback Kid), is one of the most added albums on college radio in both Canada and the U.S. in the last few weeks and is his first offering since 2005’s Night Flares. Unfortunately, there is nowhere in Sydney you can physically walk into to buy the cd. It is, however, available on iTunes and MacPherson will be in town with his band for a pair of shows in early June.Greg MacPherson - Outside Edge
Look for a flurry of new cds this spring/summer. The previously mentioned Thought Machine disc is done and the band is hopeful that it will be out by July. Local punks Ricochet are in the midst of recording another cd, which has to be their third or fourth in the last two years, to go along with their increasing presence in the Maritimes. Mark Scott’s Smashbox Studios is always booked and I have recently heard some new tracks recorded there by Seek Out Ships, a trio made of Scott, Drowning Shakespeare drummer Chris Poirrier, and David Daix. Harry Doyle’s studio is always pumping out the jams as well, with Mess Folk calling the space home for their upcoming cd. Even I will be recording some tracks there this week, with Clayton D’Orsay and Adam Day backing me up on some brand new songs.
On a final note, it’s not going to be quite this quiet in Sydney this summer. Besides the mentioned Greg MacPherson dates, I am also hearing of quite a few bands that want to make their way to the island. Montreal’s Talk Sick (which features local boy Jesse Gainer on drums) and Beneath the Massacre are just two of the bands that have already secured dates in the area. Keep checking cblocals.com and What’s Goin’ On for show listings.