Electronic artist

New music from Keanu Ienco, Veda Hille, Just A Season, more

Guitarist Keanu Ienco leads a list of great new local albums now available.

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There are independent releases of the genre that rose to prominence in the alternative rock scene of the 90s, and there are independent releases that are truly independent efforts by artists who largely do everything on their own. .

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The main thing they have in common, when they are who they say they are, are records that haven’t received large sums of money from a major that owns the imprint but that does not put his name there.

Nothing wrong with that, mind you.

It’s just an added layer of difficulty for truly indie artists trying to get their voices heard at a time when it’s as hard as ever to do full albums because everyone wants to hear a track or two on their playlist. streaming service instead.

Again, nothing wrong with that – except the horrible financial compensation that even mega-hit musicians earn after multi-million plays.

What needs to happen every once in a while is a shout out to your friendly neighborhood player who makes music because they love it and gain a fanbase by connecting with listeners in multiple ways, including reviews medias.

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So here are five recently released local indie records that deserve your attention.

Ghosts of Apollo

pink tiger | You have modified records

Genre: Jangle-punk (so says their Wikipedia entry)

key track: Pink Boys

This Vancouver foursome seems laid back enough to have recorded their last album on a Gulf Island beach. The lyrics of the title track even dive into stepping into tidal pools and lying on the foam. But the melodious, whispering vocals and delightfully quiet title track are just one of 22 in this home-recorded split-personality version. Tracks 1-11 are soft, pensive acoustic material with a heavy folk feel.

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Tracks 12-22 hook up for nods such as Spilling Yr Guts and/or Pink Boys. The press on file mentions the New Zealand scene of the 80s and it is a very fair decision. Super enjoyable pop with honest execution.

Don MacDonald

Quicksands | donmacdonaldmusic.com

Genre: Acoustic jazz-fusion

key track: Dali’s Hourglass

Nelson-based violinist/composer MacDonald has his feet in the fusional world of artists like Jean Luc-Ponty as well as the newgrass territory of luminaries like David Grisman. His track record of nine titles will certainly appeal to fans of these artists.

Backed by a stellar team including three-time National Jazz Award Pianist of the Year Dave Restivo and Juno-winning guitarist Mike Rud, among others, the music is deep in the groove. His past work includes film scores and you can hear that cinematic scope in tracks such as the showcase Dreams of Ozymandias or the almost rock-like Atacama.

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It really looks like a performer to see live at a jazz festival.

Keanu Ienco

heavenly desire | keanuienco.com

Genre: instrumental rock

key track: Wovoka Dance

Nanaimo Axeman Ienco plays like he’s been shredding all six strings his whole life. Considering he got a guitar when he was eight years old, he pretty much has it.

A jazz graduate from Vancouver Island University, his electric work is far more in tune with everyone from Steve Morse to Steve Vai. His obvious love for soaring soloing that isn’t purely informed by note stuffing makes his new recording something listeners of a wide range of preferences can enjoy. Citing Brian May and Pat Metheny as influences, his songwriting isn’t without fairly clear zappa-isms (Indigo) and even moments of Opeth-esque progressive metal (Wovoka’s Dance).

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The artist claims to draw on his Native American heritage in his work, and the aim of the album is “to take the listener on an emotional journey exploring themes of longing, regret and acceptance”.


main voice | New discs

Genre: experimental pop

key track: In the morning wind

The fourth feature from Larissa Loyva’s Kellarissa project – the name is Finnish for “in the basement” – finds the musician digging deep.

There are very trippy, synth-heavy explorations of where pop, choral singing and art song merge on Voice. The music also lives up to the title, with quasi-operatic constructs such as Desire Path or the title song showcase Abba-in-an-acid-chamber. At times, the music also veers into the dark corners of gothic nightclubs – Sphinx, Tempting Fate – in the best possible way.

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The whole scheme is so appealing that you might want to put on some dark clothes and cast a spell.


Dogs and echo in conjunction | shoe polish crescent

Genre: Vibe

key track: Cut it like little stars

Among the many artists who took time out of COVID to be incredibly busy was Vancouver’s Kuma, who released a number of electronic albums that bore little or no resemblance. This 12-track set is billed as “the soundtrack to a mood film that never was.”

It features moody urban soundscape-style meditations that are most definitely suitable for meditative filmmaking. Listeners will find songs such as Spooky Action At A Distance or the brilliantly named Death Frisbee playing in the background to cinematically frame everything you do. JAken as a whole is a perfect soundscape from background to foreground.

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Enjoy with the equally contemplative techno-tinged Sapporo Dubs for a full a night of seething hypnotic, trance-like rhythms and incredibly soothing accidental noises.

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