Culture | Summer in the city: music and books

The Daily's guide to summer culture


Three albums in, frontman Michael Angelakos is still planted firmly within his signature synth palette. But underneath the sugary sweet pop hooks are more frank discussions of mental illness, childhood, and family. You’ll probably hear half the album on the radio this summer, but Kindred might also hold up as the perfect soundtrack for a pensive bike ride around Mont Royal.

Passion Pit’s third studio album, expected release on April 21.

Fly International Luxurious Art
The Chef has had a new album on the burner since before New Year’s 2013. No one knows what’s taken him so long, but this sixth studio album from the Wu-Tang Clan veteran is sure to deliver on the extended hype.

Raekwon’s sixth studio album, expected release on April 28.

All Things to the Sea
After opening for The National at NXNE, the post-punk fuzz-pop band got themselves into Montreal’s Breakglass Studios and recorded All Things to the Sea in ten days. With only 816 likes on Facebook, this is a band you’ll want to get into before the rest of the world notices how good they are.

Montreal trio CTZNSHP’s sophomore album, expected release on April 24.

Deep in the Iris:
Montreal-based art rock band Braids has produced some of Canada’s most innovative music of the past ten years. This summer, Calgary natives and former McGill students Raphaelle Standell-Preston, Austin Tufts, and Taylor Smith are releasing Deep in the Iris. If “Taste,” the first single released on the album, is any indication, this new release will be an atmospheric and poignant effort that lands somewhere between Animal Collective and Björk.

Braids’ third studio album, expected release on April 28.


Kate Beaton – The Princess and the Pony:
Kate Beacon, beloved cartoonist of Hark! A Vagrant is back this summer with The Princess and the Pony. This picture book for kids and adult pony-enthusiasts features a strong warrior princess and one of Beaton’s most enduring characters, the “roly-poly” pony from Hark! that has also made a cameo appearance on Adventure Time.

Available July 2015.

Boring Girls – Sara Taylor:
Boring Girls, a “deadly coming of age” story, follows the rise of high-schooler Rachel’s amateur metal band. She forms the band in the hopes of escaping the misogynist world she lives in, but is then ironically forced to fight misogyny in “the dark heart of the music industry.”

Available April 2015.

Rad American Women A-Z: Rebels, Trailblazers, and Visionaries who Shaped Our History… and Our Future! – Kate Schatz:
Calling this book a celebration of American women would be an understatement. A shout out to bold women who fought for everyone, the book is a spin-off of A-Z books that all children (and adults) need on their bookshelves – because A is not for apples, it’s for Angela Davis.

Available April 2015.

Laws & Locks – Chad Campbell:

Blurring the lines between fact and fiction, Laws & Locks traces one family’s encounters with depression and mental illness. Chad Campbell’s first book of verse weaves in and out of confessional poetry and explores the way our ancestors can influence our choices today.

Available April 2015.