The Gala alternatif de la musique indépendante du Québec has announced its nominees for 2012. The GAMIQ awards include six categories, which feature a slew of talented anglophone and francophone musicians all based in Quebec. Voting was open to the public and the winners of each category will be announced Nov.11 at Theatre Plaza. Tickets to the gala are $18.
Grimes, aka Claire Boucher, is a Vancouver singer-songwriter based in Montreal. Grimes has recently garnered a lot of attention with her latest album, Visions (Arbutus; 2012), which reached 98 on the U.S. Billboard 200. The album’s signature dream pop and electronica sound has charmed and wowed music lovers from across the globe. Grimes is the sole producer of Visions, which was recorded entirely on Garageband. Her newest single and music video “Oblivion” has already received 3 million YouTube views, giving the talented singer some well-deserved attention.
Trial track: “Genesis”
Nominated for: Artist Of The Year, Song Of The Year, and Video Of The Year
Half Moon Run
Their debut album, Dark Eyes, featuring their first single “Full Circle” is causing buzz, having earned them a spot at last August’s Osheaga Music Festival. If their Radiohead-esque sound satisfies, you can catch them in concert at Le National on Dec. 7.
Trial track: “She Wants To Know”
Nominated for: Show Of The Year, Song of The Year, and Breakthrough Artist of The Year
Singer and guitarist Kandle Osborne is a 21-year-old from Vancouver, now based in Montreal, who, as of yet, remains unsigned to any record label. Her debut EP Kandle has given her a leg up on the Montréal music scene and her promising talent might one day give celebrated musicians Emily Haines and Coeur de pirate a run for their money. Kandle will be opening up for Half Moon Run on Dec. 7 at Le National. Visit her website (kandlemusic.com) to get a free download of her song “Small.”
Trial track: “Know My Name”
Nominated for: New Artist With The Most Potential
Lisa LeBlanc is a francophone Acadian-Canadian singer, whose folky sound is eerily reminiscent of La Bolduc and Regina Spektor. Her self-titled and only album is certified gold in Canada, having already sold more than 40,000 copies. LeBlanc’s talent is indisputable; her songs are refreshing, different and daring. LeBlanc will be performing her self-described “trash-folk” tunes on tour this fall and winter across Canada, with a stop in Montreal on Jan. 23 at Olympia.
Trial track: “Aujourd’hui, ma vie c’est d’la marde”
Nominated for: Artist Of The Year, Show Of The Year, Song Of the Year, and Breakthrough Artist Of The Year
Philippe B is a folk-pop francophone singer from Montreal who released his first album in 2006. Philippe B has already worked with Pierre Lapointe, and opened for Andrew Bird in Montreal last July during Osheaga. The 2011 release of Variations Fantomes, his latest album, is giving this talented singer and guitarist his chance to shine on the Quebec music scene. Philippe B will be in Montreal, at Café Campus on Nov. 17.
Trial track: “Nocturne #632”
Nominated for: Artist Of The Year, Show Of The Year, and Video Of The Year.
Alaclair Ensemble is a francophone hip-hop/rap troupe, whose signature self-described style of “postrigodon” and ‘babouinerie jouale’ has set them apart from other more traditional Quebec hip-hop acts. Mixing their beats with French and English lyrics, their latest album, Le roé c’est moé, will be released Jan. 1, 2013, but you can stream it for free on their bandcamp site. Alaclair Ensemble will be playing at Montreal’s Museum of Contemporary Art on Dec. 7.
Trial track: “Moi chu down”
Nominated for: Artist Of The Year, Show Of The Year, Song Of The Year, and Video Of The Year.
Avec pas d’casque
Avec pas d’casque is a francophone folk-country quartet based in Montreal. Their latest album Astronomie was long-listed for this year’s Polaris Music Prize. Their nine-track album, which you can purchase on their bandcamp website, was mixed by Mark Lawson, who has already worked with Timber Timbre and Arcade Fire. Avec pas d’casque are currently on tour and will be playing Montreal’s Sala Rossa on Nov. 22.
Trial track: “La journée qui s’en vient est flambant neuve”
Nominated for: Artist Of The Year and Song Of The Year.
Canailles is a francophone bluegrass-folk band from Montreal whose eight members released their first EP in 2010. Their latest album, Manger du bois, features the voices of various band members and an old-school mix of banjos, accordions, mandolins and drums. They have already played Quebec’s Francouvertes and FrancoFolies and will be featured in this year’s M For Montreal and the Festival International de Louisiane.
Trial track: “Parle Moi”
Nominated For: Show For The Year and Breakthrough Artist Of The Year.
Kaytradamus, aka Kevin Celestin, is a Haitian born, Montreal based hip-hop/electronica solo musician. Influenced by the likes of Justice and Michael Jackson, Kaytradamus has released and self-produced his newest album entitled Kaytrap. Kaytradamus is unsigned, but you can listen to his music or buy his albums on his bandcamp page.
Trial track: “Sellout”
Nominated for: Breakthrough Artist of The Year
Ponctuation, is a garage rock/punk band from Quebec. Their sound can easily be described as the future Franco Sex Pistols of the 21st century. Their 2011 EP Lèche-Vitrine features four songs of pure fun and uncomplicated punk music.
Trial track: “Ta langue sur mes lèvres”
Nominated for: New Artist With The Most Potential