Thursday, March 2, 2017
Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 8:30 pm
This event is 19 and over
tickets also available at Vertigo Records and both Compact Music locations
lineup, date, venue, times and ticket price subject to change without notice.
own patches and confesses to using cranky or budget equipment as well as top-of-the-range kit because “[good gear] does all the work for you, and that’s not always fun”. Certainly, this is a band as inspired by the dark groove textures of Andy Stott, the flourishing arpeggios of James Holden or the serrated productions of Death Grips as anything familiarly rock. “Things don’t feel right until they’ve been touched or cast over in an electronic light,” elaborates Liam. “It’s rare that acoustic drum kit, guitar, and bass comprise a finished product for us. For a song to be Suuns, it has to be coloured by electronics”.Certainly this remains a band in love with the aesthetic of obscurity. The album cover is an image of Ben’s former workmate Nahka, who was captured by photographer Caroline Desilets using a pinhole camera with a four-minute exposure time –Hold/Still, indeed. In another contradiction, this record finds Ben’s vocals far more enunciated and upfront than before. If there are themes that tie Hold/Stilltogether, says Ben, they might be investigations “about sex... perhaps not the act specifically, just [themes] of a sexual nature. But there’s also a spiritual undertone that points to another kind of searching.” The sexual is illustrated in the dark romance of ‘Careful’, while longing becomes both sexual and spiritual in the thirsty pleas of ‘Instrument’: “I wanna believe/I wanna receive...” The spiritual takes over on the back half of the record. ‘Nobody Can Save Me Now’ evokes artist Tracey Emin’s ghostly invocation For Youat the Liverpool Cathedral: “I felt you / and I knew that you loved me”, while side opener ‘Brainwash’ wonders: “Do yousee, all seeing? / Do you know, all knowing?”In a cultural centre like Montreal, bands can get too comfortable playing to their peers. Suuns, though, feel like a band always looking to the nearest border. They found early audiences in France and in Belgium, where they curated the Sonic City Festival in 2012, booking acts as diverse as Swans, Tim Hecker and Demdike Stare. Meanwhile, the last couple of years have seen them tour as far afield as Mexico, Morocco, Beirut, Taiwan and Istanbul –sometimes with friend Radwan Moumneh of the multimedia project Jerusalem In My Heart, with whom they released a brilliant collaborative record, Suuns And Jerusalem In My Heart last year.“We tour a lot as a band and we’ve been all over the map at this point,” says Ben. “There is a concerted effort on our part, when the opportunity arises, to do that. It’s like, this time, let’s try to go further east, let’s try to go further south. You find yourself playing in front of people who don’t get bands playing in front of them often, and that can be really fun.” In short, good things happen when you venture outside of your comfort zone –a truth that you could equally apply to Hold/Stillitself: an album which derives its eerie power from simmering tensions and strange, stark juxtapositions, and in doing so, directs rock music down a new, unventured path.
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