CM Does M For Montreal, Day 4Wednesday, November 27th, 2013
Canadian Musician correspondents Candice Dugas and Melanie Cheung are back with coverage of the 8th annual edition of M for Montreal.
With the festival coming to an end, Day 4 of M for Montreal assured a sweet send off. Our Saturday night lineup included sets by Young Galaxy, Miracle Fortress, and Valleys, presented by M for Montreal, Neon, and Blue Skies Turn Black at the SAT (Society for Arts and Technology).
Valleys opened with dark and mysterious melodies. This Montreal band has always been in a state of flux, shifting with their exploration of electronic hypnotics. Their most recent experimentation paid off with a new wave sound. Matilda Perks and Marc St. Louis combine thoughtful lyrics with moody guitar effects, a surprisingly catchy dynamic. With the name of their latest album, Are You Going To Stand There And Talk Weird All Night?, you get the sense this band likes to keep it real.
The buzz in the room heightened as Montreal’s Miracle Fortress hit the stage. They dazzled us with beat-driven synth pop tracks, each song catchier than the last. Lead singer Graham Van Pelt is Miracle Fortress’ composer, producer, and all around engineer. The release of their latest album, Was I The Wave?, was a highly anticipated offering in and around the city and the follow-up to their impressive debut long player, Five Roses, which dropped in 2007. The electro-pop band picked up the crowd’s momentum ad only heightened the anticipation for Young Galaxy’s memorable performance.
Young Galaxy brought the hometown love. It felt like a giant reunion, each song a story of a shared adventure. The Young Galaxy Montreal family is husband and wife duo: Stephen Ramsay and Catherine McCandless alongside friends Stephen Kamp (bass/vocals), Matthew Shapiro (keys/guitar), and Andrea Silver (drums). It was
evident these five musicians shared a special bond; they would take turns congratulating each others talents and whispered inside jokes when they crossed paths mid-song.
Catherine’s star quality glimmers on stage. She would bend down to the audience’s eye level while singing, fully entrancing the crowd. At each break, Stephen announced that they wanted everyone to dance, make love, then dance some more.
In a consistently epic show, it was difficult to pick a favourite song. It’s a toss up between their hit, “We Have Everything,” from their third album Shapeshifting, and their matured new sounds “Pretty Boy” and “New Summer” from the latest album, Ultramarine. Young Galaxy even returned for a two song encore. It was the best show of the festival and the audience was left in an ecstatic daze.
The night carried on with a Purity Ring DJ set. Montreal scenesters danced the night away to ’90s R&B dream pop in the SAT’s blue lit space.
It was truly amazing to see so much Montreal talent showcased throughout the festival. M for Montreal proved there’s tons to discover in this city’s music scene. Big thanks again to our friends at Canadian Musician for another fantastic musical whirlwind.