Mike Whissell: “Heart Clinic”

Mike Whissell- Heart Clinic

In “Heart Clinic”, Mike Whissell explores the various ways that human hearts interact with each other and the myriad trials of trying to connect with another human being. His melodically rich, varied songs are filled with wry observation on relationships, but they are also emotional and direct pleas about the need for connection. The songs have a cathartic kinetic energy, like a thrilling conversation. There is a sense of redemption and release. On this album, the clinic is one that Whissell needs as much as the listener. Continue reading

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TIFF Reviews: “Miss Sharon Jones!”

Miss Sharon Jones

About halfway through watching “Miss Sharon Jones!”, I imagined a world where our Great Artists were not godlike figures descended from higher realms, but hard-working, flawed, genuine, emotional, frail, humble people who simply want to be able to continue their work. People like Sharon Jones truly deserve success. “Miss Sharon Jones!” is an incredible and important film about a remarkable artist, and stories like hers need to be told. Continue reading

Segovia: “Music For The Guitar”

Segovia- Music For The GuitarContinuing my exploration of the history of the guitar as a concert instrument, today I am digging into “Music for The Guitar”, an LP released in the late sixties/early seventies featuring the immortal titan of classical guitar, Andrés Segovia. Continue reading

Guitar Music & Songs of the Spanish Renaissance

Guitar Music & Songs of the Spanish Renaissance (LP, 1968, Everest)

Guitar Music & Songs of the Spanish Renaissance (LP, 1968, Everest)

Today being Thursday, I am exploring the ultimate throwback in the form of the earliest surviving compositions for the guitar, contained on this remarkable and arcane slab of vinyl. Continue reading

The King Is Dead

BB King

Wherein Sam Taylor and I come to terms with the passing of a legend…

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Interview: Bleak Life 2

Bleak Life 2

Bleak Life 2 will be launching on April 30th, bringing three days of ear-scorching punk and metal to one of Ontario’s best local music scenes. True to the community-based spirit of DIY, the festival will feature local & regional bands, as well as touring acts, and will be taking place at an eclectic mix of venues around the city. Audio Reckoning recently got together with Matt Hargrove, one of the founders of Bleak Life, to talk about the challenges of putting on an indie festival, the inclusiveness of punk culture, and the magic of doing it yourself. Continue reading

Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring” @ TSO

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My wife and I recently attended the Toronto Symphony Orchestra’s performance of Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring. This famous proto-modernist work is one of the most popular and controversial pieces of music of all time. Originally conceived as a ballet, the work has achieved fame for its incredible rejection of classical ideas of tonality and key signature. The first performance in Paris caused a famous riot, as patrons reacted violently against the shocking musical motifs and decidedly non-traditional dancing.  Continue reading

The Huaraches: “The Huaraches Steal Second”

The Huaraches Steal Second

Wherein our heroes up the ante on ribald rhythms, dark dance grooves, and cavernous compositional structures. Continue reading

The Method: (s/t)

The Method

On their self-titled record, Kingston, Ontario’s The Method create the sort of no-nonsense alt-rock that used to populate radio all over the world back to from the beyond. Continue reading

Buddy Black & The Ghost Umbrellas: “The Story on the Road to Waterloo”

Buddy Black

Buddy Black and the Ghost Umbrellas will guide you down dusty roads. Their ragged music, a guided tour through the history of folk, country, and punk, will lead you from the country down to the sea, to the place where we all come together. Continue reading