1. Cannon Bros.
Fresh from the Manitoba showcase at SXSW, Alannah Walker and Cole Woods are making a name for their band Cannon Bros. north and south of the border. The power-pop duo and their incredibly catchy melodies channel a ’90s alternative vibe but have the polish and production value to keep their ditties sounding classic and not crackly lo-fi. Walker delivers her quirky lyrics and harsh consonants with the kind of irony that makes hipsters weak in the knees and more seasoned musicians quiver with anticipation to see what this band will do next.
2. The Bokononists
Some time between the release of this quartet’s EP and its first full-length record, The Dangerously Empty Lives of Teenage Girls, in September, 2011, the Bokononists got really catchy. Maybe it was the influence of Matt Peters (The Waking Eyes) or the suites at Private Ear Studio, but whatever it was gave these garage rockers a spit shine. The result is still as snarky as any namesake of Kurt Vonnegut’s famous faux-religion should be, but with a more surf-punk influence.
3. The Vibrating Beds
Throwback three-piece The Vibrating Beds released a three-song seven-inch in April, 2012, and with singer Jenna Diubaldo’s earth-shaking pipes and stomp-inducing rhythms, these songs are sure to get you shakin’. The Transistor 66 alum celebrated the label’s tenth birthday at the Park Theatre on April 26. If you haven’t seen this band yet, do not miss your chance at a rip-roarin’ good time.
4. Lyzie Burt
Selkirk singer-songwriter Lyzie Burt is an old soul in a young body. The 20-year-old piano-playing crooner channels soulful lyrics with the structure and vocal sensibilities of Regina Spektor, but still sounds more than genuine enough to be unique (she’s already got a unique look cornered with those bright green eyebrows). Her music might be kind of quiet – as is any news of upcoming shows – but just like the soul exploding from her second record Cigarettes and You, surprises are likely in store for us from Burt.
5. Royal Canoe
This crazy collective of funk-rockers – complete with falsettos and synthesizers – has had a busy past couple of months. The release of its four-song EP in February, 2012, led to a cross-continent tour with stops in Austin for SXSW and Toronto for Canadian Music Week. Now, Royal Canoe is home and ready to rock the Winnipeg music scene once more. Prepare yourself for Royal Canoe’s utterly rambunctious live experience with the eclectic EP Extended Play.