One fair in Michigan, U.S.A. and one Phest in Windsor, O.N.T. equaled a satisfying serving of music in two countries for N2D back on Sat., Sept. 17-- even if our work schedule did cut the buffet short.
We're still not sure how Hey Rosetta! from St. John's, NL, ended up playing at the bustling DIY Street Fair in Ferndale, Mich. We were just happy to see one of our favourite bands twice in one year, meet fellow R3 blogger michelka (we are big fans of her artwork; check it out) and sip a little mead. With the sunset for a backdrop, Hey Rosetta! delivered a show every bit as good as the one in June and to a wider audience. Overheard: "Who are these guys? They're really good."
While Ferndale was showcasing more than 50 Detroit area bands and one band from NL, Phog Phest 3 was showcasing one Detroit band-- the High Strung-- one band from Winnipeg-- Grand Analog-- and some of the best of Windsor's indie music scene, including hometown hero headliners, Elliott BROOD.
We arrived in time for a chat with Grand Analog's personable and articulate Odario Williams before his set, who entertained us with a great story about sneaking into a Pink Floyd concert in Winnipeg when he was in his early teens. His skills as a raconteur carried over on the stage and established a solid rapport with the enthusiastic crowd, despite the fact Grand Analog hasn't had a new release since 2009's Metropolis is Burning. We'd love to hear more of the band's dub/R&B-inflected hip hop like "Electric City," which Williams turned into a group sing-along. Yes, music makes the world go 'round.
Phog Phest 3 marks the fourth time we've seen Elliott BROOD, and every time they've delivered 100 percent. You never get the feeling that they've written it all down for the audience one too many times, and the Phog Phest audience sure didn't appear to be tired of banging pots, pans and cookie sheets. The BROOD's newest album, Days Into Years, is folkier than their previous efforts but has resonated with listeners in a big way. The band is up for two CBC Radio 3 Bucky Awards-- Most Canadian Song for "Northern Air," and Best Vocals for "When I Get Old." Winners will be announced this Weds., Dec. 7 beginning at 2 p.m. EST.
Photos: Russ Gordon/N2D Images