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Metro’s picks for the Megaphono festival

Here's what we think you should see and do at the festival.

New Swears will play as part of the Megaphono music festival.


New Swears will play as part of the Megaphono music festival.

It’s no secret that Ottawa has some serious talent when it comes to Music.

If you don’t believe me, all you need to do is check out this year’s Megaphono Music Showcase Festival and Conference that will see 50 local bands play in various venues while trying to impress big city music gurus bobbing at the back of the room.

That’s the whole idea behind Megaphono : bring the world’s top music industry peeps to our fine city and show them our chops.

There will be scores of shows in many venues across the city. Here’s Metro’s top-five picks for Megaphono , which starts Feb. 1.

New Swears

Feb. 2, 8 p.m.



Get ready to get crazy, because whenever New Swears is at the helm, mayhem ensues. Ottawa’s favourite party band are extremely talented at garage punk shenanigans. You’ll never know if they’ll show up in diapers, push each other around in a shopping cart on stage, or fling pizza at their equally insane crowd. But one thing you can be sure of is that the music will be great. Their joined by Montreal psych garage rockers I.D.A.L.G and “ small town lesbians” Josée Caron and Lucy Niles of Partner.

Michael John Dubue’s Chamber Feast

Feb. 3, 7:30 p.m.

St. Alban’s Church


Join one of Ottawa’s most esteemed composers, arrangers, musicians, producers and sound technicians Mike Dubue as he packs the St. Alban’s church with enough sonic cider to send those solid bricks crumbling to the ground. Pemi Paull, Thomas Annand, Warhol Dervish string quartet, Richard Reed Parry’s Quartet For Heart & breath, as well as Montreal’s Josh “Socalled” Dolgin will all join Dubue . The players will be performing the music of György Ligeti, Arvo Pärt, Richard Reed Parry, Bryce Dessner, as well as the premiere of Dubue’s new string quartet works. This is a show not to be missed and in that venue it will sound divine.

Her Harbour

Feb. 3, 8 p.m.

Gallery Recording Studio


Gabrielle Giguere’s dream folk project Her Harbour will do just that, leave you in a dream state for days. Her tightly woven songwriting delves deep into human themes we can all relate to. Toss in Ottawa favourites Amanda Lowe and Claude Munson and this night becomes a songwriting showcase of the region’s finest. This one’s good for the soul.

Bry Webb

Feb. 2, 7:30 p.m.

St. Alban’s Church


There aren’t too many front men who know the stage better than Bry Webb. Most known for his work behind the mike with The Constantines, Webb’s solo venture is an eerie drive through minimal mountains. He says so much in his music, but does it so subtly, which is the real brilliance. Webb will be flanked by Ottawa psych pop collective Pony Girl and Trails.

Scattered Clouds w/ Dark Plains and Boyhood

Feb. 2, 8 p.m.



Since dropping their first full length album last year, Hull’s experimental post-apocalyptic rock trio has been taking listeners through film noir soundscapes with their sonic weapons. The band’s dark sound is balanced by “unsteady euphoria and romanticism.” Scattered Clouds plays alongside Boyhood and Dark Plains.

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