If you need additional reasons to get your beer on, Toronto’s Festival of Beer is bringing you over 200 brands to enrich your appreciation of Canada’s brewing indsutry. Apart from the beer and vendors, there will be live music all weekend long (including sets from Spin Doctors and Easy Star All-Stars), and grilling tips from Ted Reader.
The Mad Decent Block Party rolls back into town, and this year, it’s setting up shop in a rather quaint neighbourhood: the commons in and around Fort York. On the bill for the afternoon and evening outdoor electronic extravaganza: Polaris Prize shortlisters A Tribe Called Red, cannon-armed daggering advocate Major Lazer, local duo Zeds Dead, and many more.
It would be fair to say that A Tribe Called Red is having a breakout moment.
The Ottawa-based electronic music trio was shortlisted for this year’s Polaris Music Prize for its sophomore album, Nation II Nation. The group is playing sold-out shows on both sides of the border and has been covered by almost every major media outlet in the country. Its “powwow-step” sound, which combines traditional Aboriginal music with dubstep, hip-hop, and dancehall reggae, has become a massive success.
ATCR’s Bear Witness admits that the whole thing is kind of a surprise to him and his colleagues, Ian “DJ NDN” Campeau and Dan “DJ Shub” General. Initially, he says, they were just trying to run a club night for urban First Nations youth and make music that would appeal to their community.
Not into shelling out $60 to $110 to see Justin Bieber at the Air Canada Centre? Well, how about a great band for the price of a can or two from your pantry cupboard? Akron/Family, fresh from a number of UK tour dates, are stopping in Toronto en route to this weekend’s Hillside Festival in Guelph, and are playing a free in-store show at Sonic Boom. (The 8 p.m. showtime is a bit unusual for an in-store, but the band will still probably be on London time.) It’s all ages, and Sonic Boom and the band just ask that you consider bringing a food donation for the Fort York food bank.