Last night, The Fray took the stage at Metropolis, following opening bands Oh Honey and Barcelona. All three bands wowed the crowd and left us wanting more! Starting with Oh Honey, an indie-folk rock five piece band, who had the crowd dancing with their sweet male-female harmonies and uplifting melodies. Next was Barcelona, an electronic pop band who’s smooth, mellow tunes set a very relaxed vibe that I very much enjoyed. And then of course, The Fray came on, playing all the crowd favourites, as well as a selection of new, and very different (in a good way!) songs!
Oh Honey.Barcelona.The Fray.The Fray brought out both opening bands on stage with them for their final song of the night!Meeting Barcelona! Meeting Oh Honey!
Eclectic, folk-country sisters Johanna and Klara Soderberg have set the bar very high as First Aid Kit. Their latest album, Stay Gold, is the perfect mix of magic and harmony. Each track is embellished with mesmerizing harmonies and hypnotic sounds that make you feel as though you’re lying in a field of daisies. It’s liberating, enchanting and spellbound. The duo feature a variety of different instrumentals, from violin to flute, incorporating orchestral sounds to the album. The lyrics are powerful, symbolizing love, hope and freedom. They pull you in, and leave you wanting more by the end. Top 3: Stay Gold, Cedar Lane, Shattered & Hollow.
Synths, keys and dance-like beats are omnipresent in this electro-pop album by Foster The People. From fast to slow and everything in between, Mark Foster and his band capture this eccentric genre in all their own ways. After their out-of-this-world, debut album Torches, somehow Foster The People surpassed all expectations with the complexities of this new album. Supermodel is the rebirth of self-doubt and struggle wrapped up into eleven amazing songs. Not to mention each track fits into the ultimate party mix perfectly, with catchy lyrics and awesome grooves. Top 3: Ask Yourself, Best Friend, The Truth.
The debut, self-titled album of Jungle is a remastered throwback of the 1970’s. Combining funk, soul, disco and, somehow, dubstep-like electro, this London-based band plays with your mind by mixing in various psychedelic sounds. Leading with a prominent and pulsating bass, each track is hip, groovy, and makes you wanna dance to the beat. Jungle arose from out of nowhere and hit us all with a fantastic array of beats, crazy-cool effects and fantastic melodies. Power and passion make this album a strong success in the music business. A modern rendition of hardy, old soul music. Top 3: Platoon, Drops, Time.
Although we didn’t spend much time in the city, we spent an afternoon wandering around the city and found a some cute spots. Ottawa is primarily known for being the home of the Parliament, but it does have a few cute boutiques, shops and restaurants.
I spotted a really cute boutique near Byward Market, Milk, featuring in indie women’s clothing, as well as locally-made jewelry, vintage housewares and an adorable assortment of greeting cards and notebooks. A must visit when you’re in the city. The employees are all so kind and stylish, and they love to get to know their customers.
45 William Street
A great record and cd store, with a decent price range and a great selection. They have old, new and used records and cds, and a selection of some to listen to for free.
193 Rideau Street
An amazing cafe featuring in scones and tea. They make sweet and savoury scones, as well as sconewiches, sandwiches made with scones instead of regular bread. A great selection of flavours and sandwich types, for both breakfast and lunch. My favourite scone is the Orange Cranberry. If you’re going for breakfast, try the eggwitch, and for lunch, try the spring sconewitch with avocado!
150 Elgin Street (go in through the Gloucester street entrance instead)
This past week, I spent travelling back and forth from Montreal to Ottawa and back again. It was so worth it. My friends and I went to the RBC Bluesfest, a week long outdoor festival in Ottawa, Canada. What an amazing experience! We came across the festival because a few of our favourite bands were performing. It’s not the most popular festival out there, with only around 27 000 people, but this was the perfect number. Each show felt intimate, and with the three main stages, there was plenty of space to roam around. We managed to get front row for almost every show we wanted to see (that’s the only way to capture great photos!). Plus, the bands could see, and often remember, us girls in the front row because we were so close!
My favourite thing about festivals is being able to see so many different bands in the span of one (or three) days! I love it even more when I can discover some new bands! These are all some of the highlights from the festival, whether they’re bands I’d known for a long time or some I’d just discovered at Bluesfest. Most of our time was spent at The River Stage, the smallest stage of the festival (and the best!). However we did roam to the other two, larger, stages and caught some great acts.
Kale Mattson performing with his band. The first act we saw at Bluesfest!A lot of the bands roam around throughout the festival and catch other performances, so it’s pretty normal to spot them in the field and strike up a conversation. We ended up spending quite a bit of time with Kale on the first day.Ever seen pink port-a-potties? Thought it was cute!Langhorne Slim & The Law.Deer Tick.One of the food booths was of smoothies, and this Strawberry Banana smoothie was to die for. I think I had one every day!Waiting in line for the big day. We were going to see Jake Bugg again, and made sure to get front row!Jenny Lewis.Don Felders, guitarist for the Eagles, and his band.Jake Bugg!One of my friends is in love with Jake, and so naturally, we waited after the show to meet him.Holy Ghost.Trombone Shorty.
Summertime is, in my opinion, the best time of year. Maybe I’m a little biased, seeing as how my birthday is in July, but it just seems as though everything good happens to me in the summer. Plus, it helps that I don’t have school, and my days (and nights) are much more open. Summer represents freedom; the days are so much longer, there are so many more possibilities to keep you entertained.
It just so happens that this summer is working out perfectly for me so far. I’ve been so busy with friends, family, at concerts, performing, etc that I don’t even realize how fast the summer is going by! My band The DayDreamers won a competition that’s putting us on the radio soon, and we just played another show that was a huge success. I know there will be so many more opportunities and I’m looking forward to coming events throughout the rest of Summer 2014.
P.s. I didn’t want to be redundant on the playlist, but I strongly recommend Foster The People’s new album Supermodel. It’s amazing!