This past week I’ve been wandering the streets of Montreal – a sprawlingly old and vibrantly new city that is so often remembered for its cold winters and Je ne sais quoi. Traveling with a friend, I accompanied her to visit her family and was quickly reminded of the city’s kind, eccentric, worldly charm that I hadn’t experienced since I visited at age eleven. Though the city is filled with great food (Look up: Poutine), visually stunning street art (check the tags on Instagram for #MuralFest2014), and very fashionable regulars on the metro, it is the local music that enchanted me the most. Montreal’s music followed me back to the States and here are a few of my favorites:
Too Beautiful to Work – The Luyas
Synth-y and chaotic, this song is a full-on frenzy. I had the pleasure of seeing them perform at Breakglass Studio where the lead singer seemed equally focused and unrestrained. The whole crowd couldn’t stop grinning.
Oh Cecilia – Born Ruffians
Fast-talking, catchy, and hip – this song is for dancing. Plus, the video is of a super adorable sixty-year old cross-guard who couldn’t ever stop dancing. Watch below:
Long Gone – Emilie & Ogden
Honest, earnest, and silver-tongued, Emilie Kahn speaks the truth and does so with a distinct hum and chirp. Listen to the whole EP here: “Babel” and “Seventy-Seven” are equally great!
Tranquil – CLementine
The kind of music you listen to when you’re driving through a bunch of trees thinking about life, love, and loss. Listen to their collection of tracks entitled “Kimberly ’93” available on bandcamp here.
In May – Knits Knots
Full disclosure, Knits Knots – Sarvenaz Amir-Ebrahimi – is one of the lovely people I visited in Montreal. Her voice is nostalgic and yearning, but sweet and whimsical. This song is a great listen, but I also highly recommend you check out her covers of Montezuma by Fleet Foxes and Truss Me by Lower Dens.
Sarvenaz also runs a music blog Murmur which features a lot of music on this list and many other beautiful music recommendations outside of Montreal. I highly recommend you like it on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/murmurmusicblog
In summary, Montreal is pretty fantastic and is full of wonderful tunes. Hoping everyone’s summer adventures are filled with great music as well!
– Jenny Henderson