Forget compasses, GPS, or helpful Sherpas. From June 13–19 this year, Torontoist is here to be your guide to everything NXNE.
Photo by Alex John Beck.
George Lewis, Jr. (a.k.a. Twin Shadow) is far more jovial than his music would have you believe. His debut album, 2010’s Forget, dredges up a culturally-isolated, lonely, and KKK-stained childhood. Released partly by Chris Taylor’s (of Grizzly Bear) gloomily-named Terrible Records, it has been described as ranging in emotions from “sweet and sinister, sad and regretful.” So, he doesn’t exactly seem like a “glass-half-full” type of guy. But wouldn’t you know it, he actually helms from the land of sunshine—born in the Dominican Republic and raised in Florida—and boasts the carefree attitude of a 1950s rock star.
Torontoist: Tell us why we should see you at NXNE, in 10 words or less.
George Lewis, Jr.: Uh, because…we’re an up-and-coming and exciting band to watch.
What’s your favourite Toronto venue, and why?
There was a little hotel with a venue in the basement.
Sure, yeah, yeah. We had a really good time there, just a really good night. Everyone had a great time, everyone went home with someone. It was fun.
Does the Northeast beat the Southwest, and why?
Well, the southwest is an awful drive through. All you see is tumbleweeds, you’re afraid you’ll never see a bathroom again and that you’ll probably see George Bush’s children or something. Maine is much more interesting.
Who’s going to be the breakout act of NXNE this year?
Haven’t you already broken?
Have we broken? Okay, tell me who’s playing and I’ll tell you who’s going to break.
Okay…well some of the bands we’re speaking to are TuZO, Allie Hughes, Bent By Elephants, Snowblink, MJ Cyr…
None of the above. Is Hooray for Earth on the list? If not, they should be. They’re gonna blow up in a big way.
What’s up next for Twin Shadow?
Some hanging out in New York and maybe some writing of the next record.
Any hints about what that might include?
Umm…I don’t know. I have no idea. It’ll be really good though, I promise.
Any last words?
We can’t wait to see you. We really, really love Canada. We had the best time in Canada, it rocks. Also, I say “What’s up, Max.”
You’ll find out. Come to the show and find out. He’ll be a very prominent figure.