Me Fault 2010:: Michael Rault, Loon Choir, Domestic Crisis Group

Just wanted to close the door on 2010. Starting next week, we will be looking forward, including some advance looks at local releases from Jenn Grant, Kestrels and Jon McKiel, but there are a few records I wanted to quickly mention before the year comes to an end.


The new long player from Edmonton’s Michael Rault, MA-ME-O, was his jump to a bigger label with a bigger reach, but Rault’s song writing chops have long since earned him this boost. MA-ME-O finds Rault smoothing out the rough edges and spastic energy that dominated his earlier work and delivering 50′s garage pop hooks laced with plucky bass lines that help the record sparkle from top-to-bottom. At times he still throws on the leather jacket and smokes (“Lay Right Down and Die”), but for now Rault seems happier adding more crisp lines and slim suits to his sound and honestly, it fits him perfectly.


For Ottawa’s Loon Choir, harnessing the power and pop of six members has taken the better part of two years but the end result, Expansion Forces, is a nice slab of 80′s danceable melancholy. Dark, echo filled synth/guitar riffs grab your ear, allowing the band to use boy/girl vocals to explore sadness that may crush the soul but sounds nice coming out of the headphones. There’s enough straight up indie rock (“Bricks”) to keep this from sounding dated, but Loon Choir sound best when they use James Bunton‘s production to add subtleties and their own stamp to familiar influences.

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MP3:: Loon Choir - Microcosm

Don’t let the cover art for the new EP from Domestic Crisis Group fool you. Genevieve Blouin and Dane Ratliff may look the part of tear-in-your-beer country crooners, but Ratliff’s guitar work is as influenced by slacker rock as it is the Nashville twang and Blouin’s voice is so beautiful and malleable, you wonder if there’s any style with which she couldn’t melt your heart. Even at the duo’s twangiest (“The Breaks”, “Put All Your Troubles Away”), percussion and feedback seem ready to explode, making you wonder if their dormant hearts are only moments from another eruption.


As it is, Two Tired Hearts is breathtaking and sad, but the couple seems determined and destined to keep moving forward. Really elegant, lovely stuff.


This entry was posted on Thursday, December 30th, 2010 at 12:25 pm and is filed under 2010, Canada, Music, Quick Hitters, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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