We’ve teamed up with the folks over at the Toronto Urban Roots Festival to give you our second edition of TURF-Tapes curated by Toronto’s very own The Lowest of the Low. The multi-day festival will take place July 4-7, and will feature a variety of acts from Canada and beyond. LOTL’s Stephen Stanley has compiled a list of songs from his favorite artists who are set to perform at TURF. Hear his mix and read its annotated tracklist below.
Where and how was this mix recorded?
It was made in an undisclosed basement somewhere in East-end Toronto, with vinyl blaring, after a particularly good preproduction session with LOTL.
What was the idea behind the mix?
To follow in the footsteps of two of the greatest mixtape makers I have ever known: musician and author Dave Bidini (Rheostatics, Bidiniband, Tropic of Hockey, Writing Gordon Lightfoot), and author Mark Dillon (Fifty Sides of the Beach Boys). Both of these guys have got me into some great music over the years.
In your own words, can you describe the sound of Lowest of the Low?
We used to describe it as the sound of The Clash beating up (insert any popular Canadian Folk-based band here), but we were young and petulant then. Now I would say it’s the sound of some best friends who used to beat each other up a lot.
Who’s an act you’re excited to see at TURF?
Beyond a shadow of a doubt, The Felice Brothers. If all goes well, I’m hoping to see them twice over the weekend [Saturday July 6th at Fort York, and later the same day at Lee’s Palace]. Somehow they manage to be dissonant, dirty and totally catchy at the same time, with some of the best-encapsulated storytelling in rock. Literally can’t wait.
Where and when can the Standard’s readers see you perform during TURF?
We are playing Saturday July 6th at 6:50pm (East Stage), sandwiched between Frank Turner & the Sleeping Souls and The Hold Steady. Damn, just writing that gives me goosebumps!
The Hold Steady – “Stuck Between Stations”
The whole of Boys and Girls in America opened my eyes wide when a good friend from Buffalo, NY first told me I needed to give it a listen. But I went with the opening track… They had me at “Kerouac” and “Berryman”.
The Felice Brothers – “Frankie’s Gun”
I’m obsessed with this song. I wish it was our song.
The Skydiggers – “Down in the Hole”
Andy Maize is the voice of this band, and a brilliant one at that, but why wouldn’t I like a song sung by the lead guitarist, Josh Finlayson?
Frank Turner – “Recovery”
My daughter got me hooked on this song. The tables have turned, and I like that. “Recovery” feels like hearing the English invasion for the first time.
Neko Case – “The Needle Has Landed”
This one always stuck out for me from the Fox Confessor Brings the Flood album. Haunting, beautiful, and sad.
Hannah Georgas – “Robotic”
CBC Radio Two brought this song into my house, and it’s been played A LOT since then…
Matt Mays – “Take it On Faith”
I love the album art (remember album art?!?) and this is a fantastic song.
The Felice Brothers – “Oliver Stone”
Yeah, they had to be on this tape twice. So different than “Frankie’s Gun”, but hits you in exactly the same place!
The Rank and File – “Rank and File”
Many years ago, a station called MuchMusic played something called rock videos. I remember watching this one hundreds of times. That was my first experience with Alejandro Escovedo and I’ve been a fan ever since.
Do Good Assassins – “Capistrano”
Technically, this band is not playing TURF this year, but Ron Hawkins will be onstage with me, and this is one of my all-time favourites from his 4000lb song catalogue.
Check out more TURF here, and The Lowest of the Low at these websites:
Missed the Arkells’ TURF-Tape? Just head on over to our StandardTapes archive.
Jeremy Schipper is an intern at Toronto Standard. You can follow him on Twitter at @jeromeoschipps.