CMW 2012 Profile: Indian Handcrafts
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CMW 2012 Profile: Indian Handcrafts

Torontoist talks to some CMW 2012 performers. Here we have Barrie's "sons of sunn spawned by mothers of invention," (their words) Indian Handcrafts.

Brandyn James Aikins and Daniel Brandon Allen are Indian Handcrafts. Photo by Brad Conrad.

Usually, we have mixed feelings about good ol’ Canadian talent getting scooped up by American labels and drawn south of the border to seek larger, greener, richer pastures. But when the label is Sargent House, and its pastures include working with engineer Toshi Kasai (The Melvins, Big Business), then we guess we can forgive Barrie’s Indian Handcrafts for taking advantage of the opportunity. Since releasing their first album independently on Bandcamp and making a big, loud, messy, splash at NXNE 2011—and drawing many comparisons to Death From Above 1979—duo Brandyn James Aikins (drums/vocals) and Daniel Brandon Allen (guitar/vocals) are poised to bring their “meatball music” (again, their words) to full volume in 2012. Indian Handcrafts plays Lee’s Palace tonight at 2 a.m.

Why should we see you at CMW?

Brandyn James Aikins: I’ll give them each ten dollars if they come. Just kidding. We put on a good show, we play really loud, and if you’re into that you should have a good time.

What’s your favourite Toronto venue, and why?

There’s a few, let me see. We’re playing at Lee’s Palace, that’s a pretty fun one. Got really good sound. It’s also a really fun stage to play. We’re also big fans of the El Mocambo, The Horseshoe and The Silver Dollar, those are all really fun for different reasons. The El Mocambo we’ve been playing for a really long time, same with The Horseshoe, they both have a great history in Toronto’s music scene. The Silver Dollar is smaller, but it’s kind of gritty and the promoter there is a great guy.

What’s your preference: indoor or outdoor venues?

I think it depends on the season in Canada. We’ve played in the winter outside and that’s not really the most fun. We’ve played indoors mostly, so that’s probably our favourite. Better climate control.

What’s your preference: giant music festivals, or single shows?

CMW and NXNE have always been really fun, there are so many bands playing, there are lots of opportunities to just hang out, or experience lots of different things. We were just at SXSW which is the mother of all festivals, so that was pretty crazy. Yeah, festivals are pretty fun.

Any advice for CMW-goers?

I guess get a wristband so you can see all the bands you want. Take your vitamins, don’t drink too much. Because, you know, that’s not good for your health. And its fun to take a chance on a band you’ve never heard of. It’s fun to see something that’s impressive that you’ve never heard of, it’s nice to be surprised at these festivals.

Favourite moment in a concert so far?

When you start playing a certain song and people are into it when you didn’t expect it, that’s the best part. When people are headbanging really hard, that’s always nice.

What’s happening for the band after CMW?

We’ve got a couple shows in Ontario through the spring, and we’re working up some more tour dates in Canada and maybe in the States, those will be announced in about a month. And we just finished our record in Los Angeles last week, which will be mixed in the spring, so we’re looking forward to hearing that. In the summer we’re playing at Edgefest and probably a couple other smaller festivals. It’ll be a busy summer, and then in the fall the record will come out and it will be even busier.