It's a testament to the brand-aligning, money-making pull of "EDM culture" that corporate sponsors are spending dough to group independently organized events into festivals - under their name, of course. Capitalism - so wily.
Not that we're super-mad over what Scion is calling Scion Sessions Week (July 27 to August 4). In this case, it boosts our local economy while also highlighting the city and country's growing reserve of quality electronic producers, DJs and party promoters.
Here are a few acts we have our eyes on. For the full lineup and access to exclusive downloads and 7-inches, hit scionsessions.ca.
Friday, July 27
A 2011 alum of another branded venture, Red Bull Music Academy, Toronto's Evan Doyle, aka Exeter, has made the single 88MPH for Sessions Week. It's a soulful slice of computer funk, his main thing, and features a B-side remix by Ryan Hemsworth.
A trend-bucking dark horse, Egyptrixx makes cinematic, capricious compositions that are like the soundtrack to transcendental club experiences. As one half of Hiawatha (with Camouflage Nights/Thrush Hermit's Ian McGettigan), he's taking that aesthetic into the rock band sphere.
w/ SCUBA at Happy Endings, Bright Pearl Dim Sum (346 Spadina), 10 pm. $15. PDR, RT, SS.
Saturday, July 28
You've probably already seen Jacques Greene without knowing it. That's him (with pal Lunice) in Azealia Banks's 212 video. One of Canada's most in-demand producers internationally, Greene has just launched his own label, Vase. This free all-day all-ages party is packed with other top-notch talent, too, that regular NOW readers should be very familiar with.
w/ ZEDS DEAD, CLAUDE VONSTROKE, RITON, A TRIBE CALLED RED, JACQUES GREENE and BADBADNOTGOOD at the Mad Decent Block Party, Yonge-Dundas Square, 1-11 pm. Free.
Wednesday, August 1
Local production/DJ duo ColeCo have released a couple of vibesy EPs but are best known for giving the sun-faded remix treatment to an eclectic range of artists like the Weeknd; Tyler, The Creator; Young Empires and Bedouin Soundclash.
w/ THE KILLABITS, COLECO and GRIMESKEE at Bassmentality, Wrongbar (1279 Queen West), 10pm. $10-$15. 416-516-8677.
Thursday, August 2
Jesse Futerman's a bit different from the rest, creating down- to mid-tempo beats with conceptual, song-like focus. Common to his jazz- and hip-hop-inflected work are persistent grooves and strange percussive tics.
w/ NOSAJ THING, DOLDRUMS, JESSE, BETA FRONTIERS and LUCIE TIC at the Hoxton (69 Bathurst), 8pm. Free.
Friday, August 3
While the vast majority the acts associated with the Scion Sessions Week are electronic, punk rock is cool, too, so they've invited noisy Louisville bands Young Widows and Coliseum to join up with Hamilton's TV Freaks on a three-song split 7-inch, which you can only get by RSVPing to this show.
w/ YOUNG WIDOWS, COLISEUM and TV FREAKS at Parts & Labour (1566 Queen West), 10pm. Free.
Saturday, August 4
Toronto's ice-synth queen Katie Stelmanis and band play their first Toronto show of 2012 as part of a heavy-hitter lineup featuring Justice and M83. The mix of heady pulse and pristine vocals on Feel It Break, their 2011 debut album, made it a critical favourite.
w/ JUSTICE, M83, AUSTRA, BURAKA SOM SISTEMA and CHARLI XCX at Hard Fest, Fort York (100 Garrison), 5 pm. $49-$69. PDR, RT, SS, TW.
The buzzed-about Halifax producer plays the popular Slowed party, which, as you may have guessed from the name, focuses on dance music in the lower end of the BPM range.
w/ TORRO TORRO, LUCIE TIC and special guest at Slowed, Wrongbar (1279 Queen West), 10 pm. PDR, RT, SS, TW.