by carl wilson

'The Definitive Host' Hosts a Shindig;
Plus: Blankket, Luyas, etc. Last Night

Last-minute, but I wanted to remind you that tonight at the Mercer Union gallery (37 Lisgar), Zoilus recurring character Brian Joseph Davis is releasing his first 'album,' The Definitive Host, a collection of his audio experiments, including "Banned Records Burned and Played," his collages of full box sets turned into single songs, his collages of full artist-best-of albums turned into single songs (called "Greatest Hit," of course) and his latest, the record-company End User License Agreement turned into a choral vocal work called "Eula," which Brian calls "a love song written by lawyers." You can hear samples of the album on Brian's website, here. You can also read a very entertaining profile of Brian written by frequent Zoilus contributor Chris Randle for Eye Weekly. Yeah, it's an incestuous little bundling we got going on, I know. Tonight's show is opened by Katie Stelmanis, a promising young singer whom I saw for the first time last night at Sneaky Dee's doing her Tori Amos-meets-Diamanda Galas thing with gothik-femme aplomb. There will also be a live performance of "Greatest Hit," with a collection of audience members operating turntables in real time.

Another artist who played Dee's last night, Steve Kado in his solo-performance role as The Blankket, had some interesting overlap with BJD - not just as the main personality behind Blocks Recording Club, which is releasing The Definitive Host (and in a very lovely package), but also in their shared interest in a certain cranky old Frankfurt Schoolmarm. Brian's first "musical" release was, as Chris Randle puts it, a "pierced-tongue-in-cheek" punk-rock single "by" Theodor Adorno, the Minima Moralia EP. And as Steve revealed during last night's show, the next Blankket project - after his beautiful EP of Springsteen covers brilliantly titled Be Your Own Boss - is a record all about Adorno. He gave us a preview last night with a really great '80s-German-new-wave-style tune whose theme was, as Steve put it, "that the culture industry is everything there is and your only way out is to commit suicide." I'm really looking forward to hearing the completed project.

The main attraction last night though was the guitar-drums-and-French-horn set by The Luyas, the new Montreal-based band fronted by Jessie Stein, formerly the voice of Blocks band SS Cardiacs. This group is more thick-fogged and abstract, less pop-song, with drummer Stef Schneider and horn-plus-FX player Pietro Amato (both of Bell Orchestre and Amato also from the amazing, under-recognized Torngat) playing pulses and washes and waves more than notes and beats. But Stein's charming, narrative-teasing, dialogic songwriting remains much the same, with her knack for naturalistic detail in word and melody. She has one of the most convincing singing voices in Canadian whatchama'die bands at the moment - at once sociable, fiercely individual and persuasively sincere. I haven't picked up the album yet but it'll be one to recline and soak in, I'm sure.

| Posted by zoilus on Friday, August 03 at 4:19 PM | Linking Posts | Comments (1)

 

COMMENTS

Truer things could not be said of Torngat. Really looking forward to hearing the Luyas record.

Posted by PG on August 6, 2007 11:17 PM

 

 

 

Zoilus by Carl Wilson