Music Biz Headlines, Dec. 19, 2018

Burton Cummings (pictured) moves to Moose Jaw, Mumford & Sons stay electric, and the Toronto hardcore scene inspires a book. Also in the headlines are Toronto concerts, Mackenzie Porter, top albums, Choir! Choir! Choir!, Foxwarren, Handsome Furs, used digital music, Christmas classics, record collecting, artist development, Matt Ross-Spang, and Michael Buble.

Music Biz Headlines, Dec. 19, 2018

By Kerry Doole

Mumford & Sons will not be returning to their acoustic roots anytime soon, thank you very much

The Mumford & Sons fan revolt appears to have subsided. Three years after pissing off a lot of their crowd with an abrupt switch from acoustic to electric on their third album, Wilder Mind, the London quartet has carried on undaunted down the same pointedly non-folky path with their new record. – Ben Rayner, Toronto Star

These Toronto concerts grabbed news headlines in 2018

From Pusha T's Danforth Music Hall brawl to Gordon Lightfoot calling last call at Massey Hall (for now), these shows resonated beyond the stage. – Staff, NOW

Running back to … Moose Jaw? Guess Who frontman Burton Cummings finds new home in Sask.

Moose Jaw is 'like Mayberry,' says Canadian rock icon. – Brian Rodgers, CBC News 


Alberta's Mackenzie Porter shuffles from time-travelling action star to country music star

Alberta-born actress and singer-songwriter Mackenzie Porter can’t go into many details about Season 3 of the trippy sci-fi series Travelers, but Marcy Warton will be showing off her formidable skills in hand-to-hand combat.  Eric Volmers, Calgary Herald

Brendan Kelly picks his favourite albums of 2018

It's been quite the year for music, from Ariana Grande's rise to super-stardom to the release of Coeur de pirate's fifth studio album, En cas de tempête, ce jardin sera fermé. Keeping a close eye on the scene is Montreal Gazette columnist Brendan Kelly. – CBC

Toronto's 1980s hardcore scene finally gets its due with the exhaustive and essential Tomorrow Is Too Late

Authors Emerson and Chirrey were responsible for getting the coffee-table-sized softcover off the ground, but it would be erroneous to say they went it alone; those who were there sat down for two years worth of interviews totalling over a staggering million words, with dozens of photographers raiding their archives to contribute upwards of 10K black-and-white images. – Mike Usinger, Georgia Straight

This isn’t your grandmother’s church choir!

With Choir! Choir! Choir! rehearsals almost ready to begin, the excitement among the pop collective’s members is rising by the minute. About 150 people have squeezed into the back room of Clinton’s Tavern in downtown Toronto on this chilly night in late November. They’re about to sing Elton John’s “Tiny Dancer."  – David Friend, CP


Review: Andy Shauf re-introduces his hometown band, Foxwarren

The wallflower indie-pop songwriter is back in a collaborative mode, and it feels natural and cohesive. – Stephan Boissoneault, NOW

Years after couple’s awkward breakup, musician Dan Boeckner gets to revisit beloved old Handsome Furs songs

Handsome Furs’ brief, but brilliant career was cut short in 2012 after just three slammin’, primitivist synth-pop albums in six years when the couple behind the music, sometime Wolf Parade rabble-rouser Dan Boeckner and his then-wife Alexei Perry, suddenly split up. – Ben Rayner, Toronto Star


The Best Rock Albums of 2018

While mainstream rock fans withstood a dreadful new Jack White album and feathered ’70s cosplay from Greta Van Fleet, it was a better year for not-quite-arena-ready guitar music. – Hop Along, Pitchfork

Andrew Barker’s 10 Best Albums of 2018

Kacey Musgraves and Kamasi Washington head the list. – Andrew Barker, Variety

The Ten best hard rock albums of 2018

2018 was a rich year for hard rock, with some of the genre’s biggest bands releasing new albums. Whether from rejuvenated acts, longtime headliners or up-and-comers, here is our list. – Loudwire

The Best Jazz Albums of 2018

There's plenty of breast-beating savagery out there, so I've continued to listen, and here is my dispatch on the Best Jazz Albums (10 new and two historical discoveries) of 2018. –  Fred Kaplan, Stereophile

Virtual garage sales for used digital music are barred by court

 Purchasers of digital music files from services such as Apple's iTunes cannot resell them through a virtual marketplace, an appeals court said in a ruling that recalls an era dominated by vinyl records and CDs before streaming services reshaped the music industry.– Jewish World Review


The best Christmas songs were actually written by Jews

President Donald Trump is taking credit this season for saving Christmas (or not), but it was a handful of Jews who wrote some of the greatest Yuletide songs in American history. – Gersh Kuntzman, Newsweek

What's the most popular music streaming service of 2018?

A household name takes the lead at home, and two newer names dominate overseas.  – Nicholas Rossolillo, The Motley Fool

11 Tips on collecting records, from a guy who owns 100K of them

Record collecting is a rather cumbersome hobby, but Chris Manak, a Los Angeles DJ who goes by Peanut Butter Wolf, doesn’t have a decent-sized record collection. He has 100,000 of them. Which begs a very obvious follow-up question: Where the hell does he keep it? – Reuben Brody, Inside Hook


10 things about the music biz that weren't fucking boring

The list includes Drake, Travis Scott, and Interscope. – Lenny Beer, Hits Daily Double

The art of artist development: Knowing when to play the long game versus skipping steps

For the past three decades that Pollstar has featured rising artists as Hotstars, one constant when talking to agents or managers seems to be a philosophy of taking time to diligently build careers and fanbases through calculated room sequences, rather than fast-tracking acts to bigger stages. – Sarah Pittman, Pollstar

How a Memphis engineer became the secret weapon for John Prine, Margo Price

Matt Ross-Spang is quietly putting his stamp on some of the era’s most important albums. –  Marissa R. Moss, Rolling Stone

Penny Marshall, ‘Laverne & Shirley’ star, director, dies at 75

Penny Marshall, who starred alongside Cindy Williams in the hit ABC comedy Laverne & Shirley, and then became a successful film director, died on Monday night at her Hollywood Hills home due to complications from diabetes. –  Carmel Dagan, Variety

Michael Buble net worth: Singer's famous Christmas songs helped amass this huge sum

So what is the Canadian singer’s current net worth? Estimates are a staggering $60 million (US). –  Katrina Turrill, The Express

Norman Wong



Happy Anniversary, Archie: Alvvays' Debut Record Gets a 10th Birthday Re-Issue

The Canadian jangle pop group's first album will be available on a new cerulean blue vinyl with an unearthed bonus track, as well as the ten original songs — including breakout single 'Archie, Marry Me' — that launched their career in 2014.

A major Canadian indie rock album turns 10 today (July 22), and the band is celebrating with a special re-issue.

Alvvays' self-titled debut helped the group break through on an international scale, propelled by jangly guitars, aloof vocals and an expertly catchy single. "Archie, Marry Me," with its soaring chorus and pleading lyrics, became a wedding song for a generation of ambivalent millennials, earnest and sardonic at the same time.

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