The annual awards honouring Canadian music have some Regina representation, with Library Voices popping up in two categories. There’s also a lot of artists the prairie dog has covered in the past year making appearances.
You’ve got until November 27 to vote, which you should go do sooner rather than later. In case you’re stumped by a category, I have a few thoughts on each. Look out for those after the jump.
Dan Mangan’s “Rows of Houses” has to take it in my mind — his latest, Oh Fortune, has a preliminary slot in my Top 10, after all — but maybe you want to go a different route. Maybe Austra would suit you better, a band that Chris Moiron recently described as “deeply hypnotic” in our issue out on stands right now. Your call.
MOST CANADIAN SONG
Library Voices released “Prime Minister’s Daughter” a good tick before their new album, Summer of Lust, came out, since it’s such a topical track and all, trash-talking Harper for the Conservatives cuts to arts funding. (You can read all about their new album in our last cover story on the band.) But you can only pick Joel Plaskett’s “On the Rails” in this category. Plaskett should probably win all of these awards, even if he’s only nominated in this category. Not only is he the best and “Most Canadian”, he is also probably the most Radio 3 an artist can be. If Radio 3 had its own currency, he would be on the $20 bill.
BEST NEW BAND
The previously-mentioned Austra get some love here, as do Braids, the Calgary-via-Montreal act who came through town for the Regina Folk Festival. (John Cameron chatted with them right before then.) Still, Imaginary Cities, the musical pairing of Marti Sarbit and former-Waking Eye Rusty Matyas, are rightfully wowing a lot of folks with their latest, Temporary Resident.
BEST LIVE ACT
Who to choose: the exuberant pop of Library Voices? The hard-working rock of Arkells? Fucked Up are getting my vote, based on this story alone: last time I saw the band, Fucked Up frontman Damian Abraham was roaming shirtless through the crowd during a song when he walked up to me, carefully unbuttoned my shirt, and gave me a raspberry on my stomach. Your winners, ladies and gentlemen.
Elliott Brood’s Mark Sasso has spent some time howling. He’s spent some time barely bringing his raspy voice barely above a whisper. The song nominated here, “If I Get Old”, is a meditation on what the future might hold, and his contemplative, mellowed vocals are perfect for it.
BEST NEW BAND NAME
Grimes, for two reasons: 1) I know how to say it and 2) it sounds dirty and rock ‘n’ roll. (Really, I wish I made more of my decisions based on them sounding dirty and rock ‘n’ roll.)
You wouldn’t call Dan Boeckner of Handsome Furs conventionally, well, handsome, but after meeting and chatting with him in advance of their last Regina show, I could see why his wife Alexei Perry would get with him. Add in their fiery live shows, and they should be a lock for this.
Montreal musical-mastermind Josh Dolgin, a.k.a. Socalled, is nominated for this line from his new album, Sleepover, which we covered here: “If you only got one leg then shake it/If you don’t wanna smile then fake it/If you got a potato, bake it.” That this kind of lyrical gold would come from the man behind “Passout for Passover” is no surprise.
“Moves”. Tom Scharpling can’t be beat, people.
BEST REASON TO LEARN FRENCH
If you’re going to take a crack at the language, Malajube isn’t the worst reason to give it a go. Our talk with the band may have focused on the arrangements on their new album, La caverne, but there’s plenty going on lyrically for listeners to feast their ears on.