I have been asked several times where I find all these amazing indie bands. Would you like to know some of my secrets? Then I’m going to tell you! The secret is out! I have to agree that it is very hard to keep up with the current indie music scene as there are thousands of bands. Unlike my co-writer, Bryen, my music knowledge is very limited to within certain time periods. Between 2006 to 2008, I wasn't constantly checking the bands out there due to my insanely busy schedule with work, school and my personal life. Because of this I fell behind on who the top bands in the scene were. Now that I know how you feel, let me make your life a little bit easier!
Of course, the best way to find out about new bands and artists is to go out there and see local gigs. It will help you actually talk to the band members, and get a feel for the music. It is true that recorded music sometimes doesn't translate well in terms of how the band performs live at shows. For instance, one of my recent favorite bands, Foxy Shazam, perform nothing like on their records. (Don't get me wrong, the new album is well recorded and I do love the album) But going to a lots of shows is costly, time-consuming , and of course, depends on your luck in finding a really good band.
To save your precious time, you need to do a little bit of homework. The internet makes this part very easy nowadays! Here are a couple of sites that I recommend that you check out!
1. CBC Radio 3
CBC radio? Yes, you heard it right. The CBC is not only a place to check out the daily news, but they also do they provide amazing coverage of indie music in Canada. In fact, artists are able to create their profile and post their materials on the CBC website. You, on the other hand, are also able to create your account and stream music for free! You can create playl ists, become a fan of the artists, and check out daily news about Canadian indie music. What I like about this site is that it gives me a detailed list of local shows in Canada. The concert calendar page helps you search out who is playing in your town by filtering shows by time, place, venue, artists, or genre (Click here)- In fact, this site has become my favorite site to browse when seeking out good local bands.
I'm sure that lots of you have heard of Last.fm. It is a site that acts like a music bank, I would say. If you create your account and add your favorite artists or bands, it will generate a radio station based on those artists. If you go to a band, page, it will show you other bands and artists that are smiliar to that one. It is a very useful tool you can use to find other artists and bands in the same vein of music and who may suit your tastes best. Each artist’s/band’s page includes a detailed description of the band, biography, and upcoming shows. However, the downside of this side is that you have to subscribe it, which costs approximately US$3.00 per month. But I find it worth if you use the site all the time.
AOL's Spinner Canada provides you with daily news, and free downloads. If you have 'liked" the Music Psychos' Facebook page (If you haven't click here to join us!), I share a quite lot of news from this site. The news is generally geared more towards the main stream, however, there is still tons of great news for indie music! My favorite section of this site is the Listening Party page. Every Monday, there are tons of new released albums that you can fully stream from the beginning to the end. They not only provide the major record rebels, but there are also new artists EPs from small rebels in North America
4. Spin Magazine
You can't forget one of the best music magazines. Spin Magazine also provides an online magazine, which also offers news, live show reviews, and CD reviews. I like the Spin List the best. They have a list of new up and coming artists, best albums of the year… and so forth. And you know, it's Spin Magazine, you will be convinced when one of the best music magazines says something is good right?
5. Rotate This!
The Queen West record store, “Rotate This!” offers an extensive list of shows in Toronto. They provide an up-to date list of shows and what's amazing about this store/site is the service fee on tickets. Unlike Ticketmaster, their service charge is WAY lower than any other places. I go there all the time to pick up my tickets. Very friendly sale associates will help you get a good deal and also don't forget their amazing collections of CDs/ records in the store!
6. Snob's Music
It's one of my favorite music blogs in Toronto. This site provides you with detailed CD reviews, show reviews, up coming events, contests, and free MP3 downloads. As a fellow music blogger, I'm always impressed with the contents of this site and the number of updates! Check it out to see what another Toronto Music blog has to say about the Toronto indie Music scene!
So here were some tips from me! If you have any recommendations, feel free to send me a message or comment!