Wednesday, October 28th, 2009


An introduction to The Wilderness Of Manitoba

TWOMPhoto via MySpaceMySpaceOpening up with the sound of bird noises might be a bit of an over-sell, but forgiveness comes easily when the multi-layered harmonies of Toronto’s The Wilderness Of Manitoba arrive and usher in their debut EP, Hymns Of Love And Spirits. Sharing members with Provincial Parks and Key Witness, The Wilderness of Manitoba come with a very clear and direct mandate – to craft gentle, intricate folk songs of the sort that no one seems to make anymore. Of course, that’s a mandate that many have taken on in recent years and so, ironically, there’s a good number of artists presently making those sorts of songs.

The Wilderness Of Manitoba still manage to stand tall amongst their peers, however, and stand out. Obviously drawing inspiration from both the English and American folk revivals of the 1960s, they place an emphasis on choral vocals that give the mini-album a certain dreamy quality that splits the difference between spiritual and ghostly. The musical arrangements are similarly kept ethereal, all gentle acoustic guitar, spare percussion with an occasional guest appearance from a banjo, cello or keys and carried aloft on a plush cloud of reverb. It’s a record that drifts by prettily, seemingly untethered from earthly concerns yet tangible enough to still carry a very real emotional heft. It haunts, like a fond but faded memory.

The Wilderness Of Manitoba are playing The Garrison tomorrow night with Olenka & The Autumn Lovers and Slow Down Molasses. BlogTO interviewed the band at the end of the Summer while The Line Of Best Fit had a more recent conversation.

MP3: The Wilderness Of Manitoba – “Bluebirds”

Timber Timbre has made his self-titled debut available as a free download through the end of Saturday, October 31. He plays a free show at the North York Central Library on November 7. It’s all about the free.

MP3: Timber Timbre – “Demon Host”
Video: Timber Timbre – “Demon Host”
Video: Timber Timbre – “We’ll Find Out”
ZIP: Timber Timbre / Timber Timbre talks to Liz Powell of Land Of Talk.

Blurt reports that Midlake will finally release their new record The Courage of Others on February 2.

Fazer has got an interview with Logan Kroeber of The Dodos.

Tiny Mix Tapes talks to Thao. Aaah, that’s some good alliteration right there. Thao plays the El Mocambo on November 1.

The Quietus asks Alison Mosshart what’s up with each of her bands, The Kills and The Dead Weather – new records from both in 2010. There you go.

PitchforkTV has added a video interview segment with Yo La Tengo to go with their Don’t Look Down session performances. The Skinny, San Diego News Network, The San Francisco Examiner and Vail Daily also have interviews.

Magnet picks their five most overrated and underrated Galaxie 500 songs. Is it really possible for a band that’s chronically underrated to have overrated songs?

Sweden’s Shout Out Louds have completed their new album and named it Work – look for it February 23 of next year.

Mid to late December is usually a real dead zone for tours coming through town, so what are the odds that two shows I’d want to see would arrive on the same night? Apparently pretty good. There’s no way I’m not going to be seeing Fanfarlo at the El Mocambo that night, but am sad that it means missing seeing Blue Roses – aka English singer-songwriter Laura Groves who released a lovely self-titled debut back in the Spring – at the Drake Underground, opening up for Marcus Foster, whom I don’t know at all. There’s no reason I can think of not to be at Fanfarlo, but if you can come up with one it better be because you’re at this show instead.

MP3: Blue Roses – “Doubtful Comforts”
MP3: Blue Roses – “I Am Leaving”

It’s not new album news, per se, but NME’s reporting that Lightspeed Champion will have a new single out entitled “Marlene” on January 25 is certainly a good omen that record number two is coming.

Exclaim talks to The xx. They’re at the Phoenix on December 2.

By : Frank Yang at 9:25 am
Category: General

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

RSS Feed for this post6 Responses.
  1. Souper says:

    I wasn’t able to find any start-times for the Fanfarlo & Blue Roses shows but you betcha I’ll be trying to catch both if I can.

  2. Frank Yang says:

    yeah, I’m definitely going to investigate that possibility but I think I saw Fanfarlo had a start time of 9:30 for Freelance Whales, whom I’d also like to see. Maybe Blue Roses will start at like 8PM or something? Dunno.

  3. Darren says:

    I home the Wilderness of Manitoba are eagerly awaiting Handsome Dick Manitoba’s impending lawsuit.

  4. Aimz says:

    I hope The Wilderness Of Manitoba is better than their MySpace photo. Eeek!

  5. J.P. says:

    Frank, I luv ya and all, but that fuckin’ “Follow me” widget’s got to go, bro. Takes up just enough of the screen edge to annoy the screamin’ Bejesus outta me. Sorry.

  6. Greg says:

    I mentioned that as well a while ago super annoying indeed however it seems that it may be something with IE or crap Windows in general because on me Mac it is fine.