Tag Archives: $100

Recollection Volume 31 – Hold it Together

Recollection is a project to review my record collection. I will listen to an album I own and review it. The album will be chosen randomly by computron. Today computron chooses…

Album: Hold It Together
Artist: $100
Released: 2007
Format(s) I own it on: CD

Once upon a time, my friend Daniel and I went to see Rick White performing in a church in downtown Toronto. His opening act was a duo known as $1001 I sat in awe as Simone Schmidt sang beautiful songs to this church crowd. Ian Russell provided backing vocals and and guitar. Apparently by that time they had a pedal steel player, but he was unable to perform at that show. White would later get them signed to Blue Fog Records and produce their first record. In the meantime they had CD-Rs for sale called Hold It Together.

The five song EP Hold It Together lived up to the potential of that first live show. Schmidt is a storyteller. Her songs might be personal, but there’s always a layer of distance between the singer and the song. Her songs could be perfect. They weren’t always perfect, but when it happened, it really happened. Hold It Together is the weakest of the band’s output, but it really shows the potential of what they would become.

Highlights

I never cum, but it don’t matter
I could be any other girl
My head planted on that pillow
My eyes fixed up above
Is this what they meant when they sang “Careless Love”

“Careless Love” would make it onto their first album. It’s a song about a woman in an unhappy relationship. It’s the tale of a woman leaving. She needs to find the happiness that the man she was sleeping with cannot provide. It’s an amazing song, one of my all time favourites. I don’t say that liberally.

Not quite as perfect, but still a brilliant song is “Nine Hundred Miles.” It’s a train song that shows off Russell’s guitar playing, guitar playing which seemed to get buried as the band grew.

Lowlights

I don’t think it’s really a lowlight, but I feel I need to address this. “San Andreas Fault” is “Sin City” by The Flying Burrito Brothers. I think it’s intentional, but it’s a bit weird.

“Marbridar” is the only song other than “Careless Love” that made its way to the bands full length debut. I never understood why. It’s probably my least favourite song on the EP.

Men 23.75 (76%) | Women 7.25 (24%)
CD: 16.5 (53%) | Vinyl: 11.5 (37%) | Digital: 0 (0%) | 7″: 2 (6%) | Box: 1 (3%)
1960s: 4 (13%) | 1970s: 2 (6%) | 1980s: 1 (3%) | 1990s: 8 (26%) | 2000s: 15 (48%) | 2010s: 1 (3%)
Canada 9.8 (31%) | USA 14.2 (46%) | UK 5 (16%) | NZ 1 (3%) | FR 1 (3%)
Ontario 4 (40%) | Quebec 1 (10%) | Nova Scotia 3 (30%) | New Brunswick 1 (10%) | Manitoba 0 (0%) | British Columbia 0 (0%) | Prince Edward Island 0 (0%)
Saskatchewan 0 (0%) | Alberta 0 (0%) | Newfoundland and Labrador 1 (10%) | Northwest Territories 0 (0%) | Yukon 0 (0%) | Nunavut 0 (0%)
  1. Pronounced “One hundred dollars.” []

Music Monday

A few weeks back, I went to the Blue Fog Review show at Lee’s Palace.

Lost recently ended, and Garfunkel and Oates has the perfect ode.

Martha & The Vandellas…

Oh Ronnettes! Be still my heart…

Okay, so there wasn’t much of a theme here… shoot me.

Blue Fog Review Part II

On Friday night I went to see the Blue Fog Review at Lee’s Palace. I had previously upload photos from before $100’s set. Here’s $100 and Rick White.

It don’t matter if our love’s true

Went to the Blue Fog Review at Lee’s Palace last night. It was my opportunity to road test my new 50mm 1.8 lens. I took over 600 photos. I’ve only had a chance to go through the pre-$100 photos. Until I get a chance to post the $100 photos, you can enjoy a recording, courtesy of Mechanical Forest Sound. Here’s $100 performing “Hell’s A Place,” a song about Lesbian love; and here’s Rick White with $100 performing “Sorry We Missed You.”

Photos?



Mix albums!

I recently reconnected with an old friend, from back in my high school days. We never went to school together, after all, she was, and still is far off in a foreign country. So I made Beth this mix, but I didn’t know what I might have sent her all those years ago, so I decided to limit myself to nothing older than 2000. I also didn’t know what she had been listening to since then, so I decided to limit the selection to Canadian music.

  1. The Indie Queens Are Waiting” by Dan Mangan
    • This is my favourite Dan Mangan song, and I’ve been on a bit of a kick of listening to him endlessly.
  2. Hibernation Song” by Whale Tooth
    • This is not just my favourite Whale Tooth song, but everyone’s favourite Whale Tooth song. They’re a lot of fun, but this song specifically is addictively catchy.
  3. Oh, Alberta” by Elliott Brood
    • If you’re going to make a mix of mostly Canadian music, how can you ignore the most Canadian song ever written. “Ontario, that’s where I’m from.”
  4. Fourteen Hour Day” by $100
    • This is such a tragic tale of loss and heartache.
  5. The Ballad of Poor John Henry” by Cuff The Duke
    • Number two in the Cuff The Duke’s “Ballad of…” series, and definitely my favourite.
  6. Nowhere With You” by The Joel Plaskett Emergency
    • This song is just addictive and fun. I often forget about the Make A Little Noise EP, so I figured this was a good way to give it some love.
  7. “Morning Dove” by Greg Keelor
    • My favourite song from Keelor’s depressing, but beautiful Seven Songs for Jim album.
  8. The Nun’s Litany” by The Magnetic Fields
    • How can you not love a song with the lyric “I want to be a dominatrix, which isn’t like me, but I can dream. Learn S&M and all those gay tricks, and men would pay me to make them scream.” FYI, on the album Shirley sings the song, but in the video Stephin sings it. He did after all write it.
  9. The Gambler and His Bride” by Daniel, Fred & Julie
    • I never noticed how long this song was until Beth, the recipient of this playlist pointed out how bloody long it actually is. It’s a great song, DF&J played it both times I saw them live recently.
  10. Many Lives -> 49mp” by Final Fantasy
    • The violin is so pretty.
  11. Jumpers” by Sleater-Kinney
    • Not many better songs about killing yourself. “My falling shape will draw a line between the blue of sea and sky; I’m not a bird, I’m not a plane.”
  12. Sunndal Song” by The Apples In Stereo
    • Easy to forget that Hilarie Sidney was in The Apples In Stereo, but I think she added a much needed secondary voice to Robert Schneider’s.
  13. Step Off The Map and Float” by Library Voices
    • We’re all just pinpricks on a paper continent.
  14. Two Girls From Montreal” by The Bicycles
    • The first Bicycles song I got stuck in my head. After seeing them live for the first time (years before their first album was released), I left the venue singing this song.

So, yes, there are one item in there by an international artist, The Magnetic Fields, but not enough people know Stephin Merritt, and that’s just a sin.

A few nights ago, I saw my friend Emily, and somehow my enjoyment from making mix tapes/discs/playlists1 came up, and she asked me to make one for her, so this is what I came up with.

  1. Tina’s Glorious Comeback” by Dan Mangan
    • Dan Mangan started the previous one off so well, why not carry on. This one is another that I’ll happen to listen to days ago, and still be singing it. My coworkers must think I’m insane.
  2. “I’ll Have To Dance With Cassie” by God Help The Girl
    • My favourite God Help The Girl song, and I think Emily would understand the thoughts behind this one.
  3. Cop Song” by Entire Cities
    • One day I was walking down the street listening to this song, and a cop was slowing following me in their car.
  4. Snowsuit Sound” by Sloan
    • Though I’ve given up my love of Sloan, I still understand that they used to be awesome, and this is one of the songs which can perfectly capture it.
  5. Yelverton Hill” by The Inbreds
    • “A ring is an awful thing…”
  6. Great Lakes” by Valery Gore
    • The last mix had Valery’s doppelgänger, so this one should include the original.
  7. “Seduced And Abandoned” by The Magnetic Fields
    • This is the tale of an abandoned woman, left without her lover, but with a baby. It’s not the first time that Merritt has told this story, but I think it’s the best rendition of the tale. See: “The Night You Can’t Remember
  8. Highschool” by The Flashing Lights
    • This power pop anthem is as good as it gets.
  9. Girlfriend” by Eric’s Trip
    • Grunge!
  10. “Don’t Wannabe / Like By You” by Julie Doiron
    • Hehe, I put Julie Doiron right after Eric’s Trip! This is the song women sing when I get a crush on them.
  11. Glitter” by The Superfantastics
    • This two piece is just sugary fun.
  12. Your Island” by Young Rival
    • I like Young Rival, I think Emily would dig these Hamiltononians.
  13. “Scott Pilgrim” by Plumtree
    • With the new Scott Pilgrim film coming out soon, this song is a perfect piece.
  14. “We Are Being Reduced” by Thrush Hermit
    • My lord, this song is stunning.
  1. Any music nerd has this love. []

April 2010, in review

In December, I set goals for myself, how many films to see this year, how many shows to attend, how many records to purchase, and how many books to read. This is the standings, as of the end of February…

Books I read (6/10) – 60%:
Nothing this month.

Films I saw (32/52) – 61%:
The Sweet Hereafter | Originally released 1997   
Nine | Originally released 2009
The Runaways
Sleeper | Originally released 1973

Albums I bought (24/52) – 46%:
“My Father’s House” b/w “The Digger” (Regional 7″ Volume 2) by $100   
What The Boat Gave The River by Mark Berube & The Patriotic Few   
new EP by Fred Squire   

Shows I attended (14/52) – 27%:
Daniel, Fred & Julie (w/ Baby Eagle & Jerry Leger) @ The Horseshoe Tavern; April 16, 2010   
The Cheap Speakers (w/ Mark Berube and The Patriotic Few, Lordy Lordy & Big Crimes) @ El Mocambo; April 17, 2010   
Sloan, The Meligrove Band, Adam Green & Valery Gore @ Sonic Boom; April 18, 2010   
Daniel, Fred & Julie @ Soundscapes; April 26, 2010   

January 2010, in review

In December, I set goals for myself, how many films to see this year, how many shows to attend, how many records to purchase, and how many books to read. This is the standings, as of the end of January…

Books I read (1/10 – 10%):
Animal Farm by George Orwell | Originally published 1945

Films I saw (11/52 – 21%):
It’s Complicated | Originally released 2009
Magicians | Originally released 2007
A Single Man | Originally released 2009
Fantastic Mr. Fox | Originally released 2009
After Elizabeth II (Documentary, from CBC Doc Zone)
Crazy Heart | Originally released 2009
Brüno | Originally released 2009
Dan In Real Life | Originally released 2009
Men Who Stare at Goats | Originally released 2009
It Happened One Night | Originally released 1934
A Boy And His Dog | Originally released 1975

Albums I bought (7/52 – 13%):
Gene Clark by Gene Clark (vinyl) | Originally released 1971
The New Despair by The Gothic Archies (CD EP) | Originally released 1997
The Wayward Bus by The Magnetic Fields (CD) | Originally released 1992
Distant Plastic Trees by The Magnetic Fields (CD) | Originally released 1991
Not So Much To Be Loved As To Love by Jonathan Richman (CD) | Originally released  2004
Heartland by Owen Pallett (vinyl)
Mal De Mer by Ben Gunning (CD)

Shows I attended (5/52 – 9%):
Julie Doiron (w/ Will Kidman) @ The Cobourg; January 9, 2010
Krupke, Skip Jensen & Ginger & Irene @ Rancho Relaxo; January 15, 2010
$100 (w/ The Lonesome Ace Stringband & Stripmall Ballads) @ The Horseshoe Tavern;  January 22, 2010
Ben Gunning (w/ Allie Hughes) @ The Rivoli; January 29, 2010
The Dress Whites @ Bread & Circus; January 30, 2010

Lyrics volume 3

For volume 1, click here.
For volume 2, click here.

On Friday night I went to see $100 at the Horseshoe Tavern, and I knew right then that I should include them in this ongoing series of awesome lyrics.

With only one album, one EP, and two seven inch records in their limited catalogue, there’s not much to choose from, but the it seems nearly every song has something worth talking about. Whether it’s songs about the hostile relationship between mother and her transexual son, self-righteous men who impose their beliefs on a lesbian couple, suicide on the TTC, or sloppy lovers, it’s easy to find something to talk about.

Instead of these, I chose the song “Fourteen Hour Day,” which is a tale of a woman and her husband, a miner in Timmins. Wishing to be able to lay down with her husband, when he’s busy working a fourteen day as the foreman in the mine. They spend their years toiling away, hoping for something better, until the end.

There’s a dip here in the mattress,
Beside me where you lay.
I can’t bear to lie here, oh I weep my night away,
You know I weep my night away.

I’ll grab that shovel darling,
March up to your grave.
Dig a hole right next to yours and next to you I’ll stay,
Yeah, next to you I’ll stay.

The pure sadness and desperation of hers is heartbreaking.


How does one end an era? John Lennon did it with a simple statement.

I don’t believe in Beatles

$100

I just got home from The Horseshoe, where I saw $100, for the fourth time. I’ve seen them in many modes. When I first saw them at the Music Gallery, opening for Rick White, they were a two-piece of Ian Russell (Guitar) and Simone Schmidt (vocals). Since then, they’ve rounded out their numbers and now perform as a seven-piece. Apparently Rick White was so impressed by the band, that he asked to record their album. I was so impressed that after their set, I went to the back of the church and purchased their EP.

I then later saw them opening for Eric’s Trip at the Mod Club, it seems Rick White really liked them, and figured fans of his band, the lo-fi heroes known as Eric’s Trip, would also dig them. I certainly did. I again saw them when Julie Doiron came to Toronto promoting her record I Can Wonder What You Did With Your Day. So it seems that I couldn’t see $100 without also seeing Eric’s Trip or a former member of Eric’s Trip.

The country band has evolved considerably since I first saw them, and I’ve always been more and more impressed every time I saw them. Their album is pure gold.

Click here to hear Simone sing about lesbian love, and those who keep them down (or watch above if you’re not on FB).

Today was a celebration of the release of their new 7″ My Father’s House, volume two in their series of regional 7″ records. The first release Fourteenth Floor was released on Toronto-based Arts and Crafts. This second 7″ is released by British Columbia’s Deranged Records.

Opening up the night was Stripmall Ballads, a resident of Washington, DC, USA. Stripmall Ballads is Phillips Saylor with a guitar or banjo. Listening to his MySpace page, you’d think that his shows would be rather mellow, but the man has so much stage presence, and power in his playing, that is seems like a full band is on the stage. Definitely worth catching if you, and he’s apparently spending the week in Toronto recording with Simone.

Following Saylor was followed by The Lonesome Ace Stringband, an old-time country trio, of double bass, fiddle and banjo. If you like good old-fashioned country music, this is perfection for you. Max Heineman sounds like he was born to sing country music. The three men were all playing acoustic instruments surrounding a handful of microphones taking up a tiny portion of The Horseshoe’s generous stage (it is if you compare it to Rancho or Sneak’s). The audience were dancing and having an amazing time.

Finally $100 played their set, emerging in a cloud of smoke, they tore up the stage with “Paris Is Burning,” not the soft, depressing song of the record, instead lively, loud and amazing start to the set. The played a lot of songs I didn’t recognize, they played both sides of the new 7″, and both sides of the previous one. Included in the set were long-loved songs like “Careless Love” and “Hell’s A Place.”

Paul Mortimer’s guitar playing was top-notch as he featured heavily in the mix, often overpowering even Schmidt. The only thing that was perhaps off was the inclusion of “Fourteen Hour Day” in the set. It’s perhaps the best song of $100’s, but the tale of a woman married to a miner, and completely lost without him is so beautifully depressing. It didn’t really seem like it fit in the heavier set.