January Monthly Music

Jessica Lewis returns for another edition of Monthly Music.  If you enjoy this feature, you can read more of Jessica’s musical musings at Round Letters.

This month I’m going to try something different. After all, it’s a new year, a new decade. There is much to look back on and look forward to, especially in music. So, without delay, here follows what I believe are some albums and concerts to look forward to in January 2010. There’s already a lot in just one month! These picks are all pretty earthy, a great symbol for how they’ve all worked from the ground up, and 2010 expects some beautiful flowers, trees, bushes, what-have-you.

By all means, start a discussion in the comments. Did I leave anyone out? What are you looking forward to in music for 2010? And what did you love most about 2009?


Owen Pallett – Heartland Out January 12. Plays at the Mod Club on the same day. From the man who had to change his stage name Final Fantasy back to his real name due to copyright infringement comes the album everyone in the Toronto indie scene has been waiting for since He Poos Clouds in 2006. With his trademark quick-wit and faster violin pace, this album is sure to keep the critics and fans chattering for a while.


Woodpigeon – Die Stadt Muzikanten

Woodpigeon – Die Stadt Muzikanten Out January 12. Plays at the Drake Hotel on February 11. Oh Mark Andrew, your crew and the blissful melodies! Pleasant, familiar and yet still an adventure is every Woodpigeon album. What has impressed me about Woodpigeon in the past has been how easy their songs mold to any occasion. Studying, hanging out, partying, discovering.

Kate Maki - Two Song Wedding

Kate Maki – Two Song Wedding Out January 12. Plays at the Dakota Tavern on January 28. This singer-songwriter from Sudbury has been slowly gaining attention since 2003, but I think that this album will finally raise the prospects for her in Canada. She makes slow, jazzy songs with her voice that beautifully ties everything together. And she’s got a reputation for really rocking out, so definitely don’t miss that show!

Basia Bulat - Heart of My Own

Basia Bulat – Heart of My Own Out January 26. Plays at Trinity St. Paul’s on January 16. Basia hit it pretty big with her Polaris Prize-nominated album Oh, My Darling in 2007. Like Maki, I believe that 2010 will be Bulat’s year. With her ever-increasing vocal power paired with the violin, guitar and autoharp, Bulat will hopefully bring in the spring a little bit faster this year.

And now for three more shows you should check out this month:

Run With the Kittens on January 7 at University of Toronto’s Hart House. This Toronto indie-rock band will play the same venue again in February, March and April, and each time is free, so you have plenty of chances to catch them. But why not start your year with their fun yet casual party jams?


The Cribs, Adam Green and the Dead Trees on January 15 at the Phoenix. Sure to be one heck of a show. I’ve seen Green before and he pretty much just goes off the walls and yet croons at the same time. I’ve heard the Cribs put on a great set. I’m not too familiar with the Dead Trees but they seem like a fun folk-rock band.

Little Girls on January 15 at Sneaky Dee’s. All I will say is: nachos and noise-rock? Nom-nom!