The Medicine Hat

The Medicine Hat is an alt-indie band from Guelph in Canada comprising the quintet of Aaron Hoffman, Elliott Gwynne, Michael Boyd, Nabi Bersche and Tyler Bersche.

The Medicine Hat - alt-indie from Canada

The Medicine Hat

Interestingly for the second time in a month I find a band who coincided a release with a relationship occasion – last time it was Crying Day Care Choir with their daughter, this time a release that came out in the summer to marry up with a – wedding and you can spot by the surnames who it was back in June that tied the nuptials, even more intriguingly both being folk derived and even more fascinating, both living in countries whose borders extend into the Arctic Circle….

….At that point the common thread breaks you will be delighted to hear, else this would not be a band review but an exploration of geographics and genetics. The Medicine Hat, yes, finally we have arrived….

A beguiling vocal that sounds akin to an icy blue figure is surrounded by equally separated instrumentation, giving the material a strangely stark context as the precursor to the evolving relationships of which The Medicine Hat concentrate. Whilst distinctive instrumentation slips into the room from the various corners, there is a cohesion that delivers music which resonates of the virtual spaces of Social Media, connected, cohesive, yet solitary and distant entities.

The keys, provide a thawing sentience to the sounds, acting like the melting and refreezing bond which creates the sculpture that is The Medicine Hat. I have had the opportunity to listen to the nine track Old Bones which came out recently to coincide with the wedding and it is delightful journey lasting just over half an hour – worth taking ownership.


Old Bones – The Medicine Hat is available on iTunes*.

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Tropical Tobacco – Sadie – Audio

Tropical Tobacco from Portugal release a new track – Sadie.

Tropical Tobacco

Tropical Tobacco

Not the most prolific of bands to make their music available for broader consumption, when they do, it is always with some interest I take a listen to what they are delivering and this dreamy number Sadie, is not a disappointment.

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Monarch is Brennan StrawnBrent KutzleBrian Willett and Joel Plotnik an indie electro-pop band from Los Angeles in the USA.

Monarch - indie electro-pop from the USA

Monarch – Image by Trevor Hoene

My brain is hit with a range of reactions on hearing the music Monarch produces, from recoiling in horror, to being mesmerised by the warming textures. As regular readers know I have an aversion to oleaginous radio friendly production and there is enough of a layer here to make Deepwater Horizon seem like a blip, but underneath the layers of oil is some stunning music and it is well worth stripping aside the gloss to hunt out the mysterious sounds that the quartet produce.

The compositions are a constantly changing pattern of sound that take the mind on a journey of luxurious soundscapes, almost orchestral in feel. I am delighted I persevered and came back to this many times as Monarch are in fact a top quality outfit with much to offer to the world of music. The instrumentation is gauzed in a hazed veil whilst the vocal is delivered as though coming from a different room and as the parts collide they caolesce in to a powerful and enchanting experience.


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