Heading into its tenth year of success, Pop Montreal is the city’s call to hundreds of fringe bands hailing from across North America. The event not only offers the opportunity to perform, but also for those not in the musical know to get back in touch with current movements in their home city, country, and across the continent. With over six hundred performances, there’s a lot for only five days. Below, our suggestions for the gamut of genres playing:
Not safe for the nostalgic, Yacht Club is a side project championed by Ben Cook of legendary Canadians F***ed Up. Far from hardcore punk, this ‘80s-inspired dance pop will have you reenacting Pat Benatar’s signature shimmy—hopefully to at least some success. For lovers of Michael Jackson and Pet Shop Boys, head over to Mission Santa Cruz on Thursday. 80 Rachel St. W. Yacht Club “Flash”
Toronto babe-throbs Beliefs are part of Hand Drawn Dracula’s annual showcase at POP, reasserting shoegaze into the electronic-dominated music scene here in Montreal. An intersection of Sonic Youth and Slowdive, the four-piece looks to make a name for themselves before releasing their first album—and what a better place to start: CFC Bar on Thursday. 6388 St-Hubert Ave. Beliefs “Iron Streams”
Swag ‘n Sway
Net sensation Lil B will be performing with Montreal favourites, Lunice and Cadence Weapon, Friday at Club Soda. Expect odd rhyme schemes, offbeat rap verses and an almost indecipherable performance. A prolific contemporary hip-hop artist, Lil B has released over 1,500 songs to varying degrees of success. Think: Lil Wayne meets homeless, imbibed poet. 1225 St-Laurent Blvd. Lil B “I’m God”
Drawing on ‘80s pop, ‘90s house and ‘00s R&B, Ango crystallizes synthy love songs—such as those found on the Drive soundtrack—and punctuates them with sharp hats and metronomic drum loops. Unabashedly catchy, his sound both infects and spreads like any good contagion. Side effects may include having a better repertoire of dance moves than you thought you did. Show ‘em off on Saturday, at Le Belmont. 4483 St-Laurent Blvd. Ango “Paralyzed”
Image courtesy of Pop Montreal.