Looking for some new music for your iTunes playlist? Well you don't have to go too far. Ottawa may be known more for passing policies than rocking out, but there is a vibrant indie music scene in Canada's capital that is begging to be heard.
Here are our top picks for the sweetest local sounds in O-town:
1. Full Tipped Sleeve
Full Tipped Sleeve may have started out as a cover band, but they've grown into one of the biggest names on the Ottawa indie music scene. Lead singer Hannah Fraser has an unforgettable voice that's a little bit Florence Welch and a whole lot of awesome. The five-piece band includes Hannah's brother Joe, and bandmates Charles, Owen and Sean. They call the nation’s capital home and have graced the pages of countless local publications such as The Ottawa Citizen, The Ottawa Sun, and Ottawa Magazine. If you did not get the chance to catch this group at the Ottawa Folk Festival in September, you should definitely like them on Facebook and keep up to date with their upcoming shows. Full Tipped Sleeve should not be missed!
2. Hearts and Mines
Hearts and Mines is an alternative indie rock band with four powerful male artists behind their sweet and soulful name. This band consists of Matt Luloff who plays guitar and belts the vocals, Jason Watts on drums and vocals, Robert Hanlon on bass guitar and vocals, and Michael Pineault on the keys. Time to jump around and swing your head back and forth, this band is full of “Heart” and energy. Their new singles can be found on their MySpace page (“Chasing Dreams” is a personal fave). If you missed their latest show at Rainbow Bistro on Nov. 2, follow them on Twitter for updates!
3. The Love Machine
Turn up your speakers ladies and gents! Allan Gauthier, Sean Prescott, Jordan David and Mike Laing are The Love Machine, a new age indie, pop and soul band. I personally love the chill simplicity and raw sound of their guitars and vocals. Picture yourself sitting around a campfire, or with a group of friends at a house party; that fuzzy, warm feeling you just got is this band’s sound. Their most recent album is Sweater Weather, and you can look forward to a tour of Ontario in November, which will entail a 10-day trek for the band from Ottawa to Windsor. Stay tuned for more information on the tour via the band’s Facebook page.
4. Fire and Neon
Fire and Neon is an electric indie rock band out hailing from Kemptville, Ont. but currently residing in Ottawa. This unique band has three members: Phill Konopka who plays the keyboard, David Wijsmanon on the guitar, and Andrew Hunt who plays the drums and percussion featured prominently in every song. Their relaxed melodies are perfect for background coffee shop tunes, or for all of us students, some great study beats. Fire and Neon considers bands such as Stars, MGMT, Death Cab for Cutie, and White Lies as muses. Their most recent performance was at the Ottawa’s Blues Festival and the band’s 2011 single “Fight, Fight, Fight” can be found on their MySpace page.
Listen: Fire and Neon - Clementine
Need more of an indie music fix? Check out these upcoming shows:
The Sheepdogs - November 17 and 18 at Ritual
Tokyo Police Club - December 14 at Ritual
Mother Mother, Hannah Georgas - November 23 at Bronson Centre
Ottawa Nujazz Festival - November 22-24 at Mercury Lounge