The fast-growing Under the Snow festival is now in its eighth edition
"Around 2001, 2002 there was a lot of interest for my label’s bands and they all wanted to play shows in Montreal," remembers Where Are My Records honcho Jeff Rioux. "We figured we could do an event during the winter since not much is happening then, plus the music we released – mostly instrumental post-rock at the time – fitted with that season."
Under the Snow was originally supposed to be a one-off thing, but it was so well received that Rioux and his partners have been bringing it back every year since, even though they don’t get any subsidies and all do unpaid work. Stretching over five days and in three venues, with nearly 30 acts performing, the festival now also encompasses the Montreal Underground Music and Arts Fair (at Église St-Denis, March 17-18).
The eighth edition includes artists of all kinds, who can generally be described as independent, but who otherwise dwell in various music genres, from the prog-folk of Enfant Magique (w/ La Greffe at Casa del Popolo, March 14) to the indie-pop of Lila dit ça (w/ Bisko, Les Filles at Divan Orange, March 15), the shoegaze of Elika (w/ Aun, Pecora Pecora at Casa del Popolo, March 16) and the dark chanson of Le Husky (w/ Antoine Corriveau, Eugène et le cheval at Divan Orange, March 17). "There’s also a garage rock night, something I’ve wanted to do for years, with Jimmy Target and the Triggers doing a show with Skip Jensen at Casa on March 18," mentions Rioux.
One of the highlights of the fest should be the concert of former Eric’s Trip bassist Julie Doiron, who will be revisiting her 1997 album Loneliest in the Morning, which was re-released in 2008 by Jajaguwar. "It’s an album that really had an impact on me, it’s some of Julie’s most beautiful songs. I asked her to do it and she immediately agreed." (Sala Rossa, March 16)
Jeff is also enthusiastic about the shows by Pat Jordache, who’s about to stop touring to go work on the follow-up to the critically acclaimed Future Songs (Sala Rossa, March 17), and Elfin Saddle, who just launched a new LP, Devastates, which Jeff "really fell in love with" (w/ Fire/Works, Monday Night Choir at Sala Rossa, March 15).
Under the Snow
March 14 to 18