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HOLIDAY CONCERTS IN MONTREAL

What is the sound of the holiday season? Traditional Christmas hymns, carols and compositions sung by a choir in an opulent church? Ubiquitous jazzy muzak renditions of the same through mall speakers? Well, Montreal’s got both, but we’ve also gone several steps further, with eclectic choirs, gospel goings-on, orchestral arrangements, Hanukkah shindigs, jazz interpretations and more than a few nights of good old-fashioned, possibly mulled, rock n’ roll…

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL: NOVEMBER 25-DECEMBER 1

In the wonderful week ahead, Montreal’s creative community is out in full force with their wares and artistic offerings in theatre, dance, music, yoga and miscellaneous (there’s always a lot of miscellaneous creative action in Montreal, which is part of why we love it so)…

M FOR MONTREAL 2011

Another great M for Montreal has just wrapped up and we got to the opportunity to see everyone from up-and-comers like Karim Ouellet to locals-done-great like Karkwa. M for MTL continues to be both a way for local bands to gain international exposure and for audiences to see a million (my estimate) bands in a couple days. Though 2011 still has plenty of great concerts on the way, our next big music fest here in Montreal is January’s Igloofest. See you there.

M FOR MONTREAL: THE BANDS YOU NEED TO SEE

In November, the reality that you’re no longer ambling listlessly through summer days becomes undeniable. But thankfully M for Montreal (November 16-19), the city’s mini music fest, is here to save the season. Here’s a list of some of the bands you need to see…

FALL 2011 CONCERTS IN MONTREAL

When it comes to concert craziness, it seems that each subsequent year outdoes its predecessor, and 2011 was no exception. Record attendance was reported at Montreal’s major music festivals and the number of club and larger venue music events hit an all-time high. Clearly, the appetite for music entertainment in Montreal continues to be one that’s not easily satisfied. Hungry music gourmandizers, therefore, will want to take note that Prince, The Wailers, Jay-Z & Kanye, Feist, Judas Priest, Bon Iver, the New York Philharmonic and many more represent the best of what’s left in 2011…

MMFA OPENS BEAUTIFUL BOURGIE PAVILION AND CONCERT HALL

The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts is expanding in bold and beautiful ways. As autumn settles in and winter is trailing not so far behind it, art and music lovers can seek refuge in Montreal’s newest creative space – the Claire and Marc Bourgie Pavilion and Bourgie Concert Hall…

ARCADE FIRE AT POP MONTREAL: PHOTO GALLERY BY SUSAN MOSS

Arcade Fire’s love for Montreal – including the crowd of over 100,000 who came out to Quartier des Spectacles last night – was clear as soon as they walked on stage, smiling ear to ear and bouncing into Ready to Start, from their Grammy-winning album The Suburbs. Images of teenage rebellion among suburban sprawl played on screens behind the eight-member band, who seemed intent on eradicating world-wide malaise themselves. “Our hearts are very full right now,” lead singer Win Butler said, and he meant it. Arcade Fire was home.

POP MONTREAL: 10 YEARS OF SHOWS IN COOL PLACES

Back in its first year, 2002, Pop Montreal helped me discover the city’s nooks and crannies via music, and the festival still manages to find new venues for bands to make their own. Pop Montreal’s venue choices have included the tried and true, but it’s the unusual and interesting locales that have stuck in my memory. Maybe that’s how memory works though, a strange environment just solidifying good music and a good time…

MONTREAL SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA’S NEW CONCERT HALL

Sound snobs, this one’s for you. Yeah, you know who you are – and you’re proud of it. After visiting a Maison Symphonique de Montréal, the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal’s new Concert Hall, this week I can breathe a pitch-perfect sigh of relief. The place is tailor-made for those who believe acoustics can make or break any musical performance. So get ready for a lot of performances of the make variety…

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (AUGUST 19-25)

The end of August in Montreal is a sweet time – the days aren’t too hot, the night aren’t too cool, and the city seems to move at an even more relaxed pace than usual. Even with all the things going on this week in Montreal, leisure is still a central focus: chill out with a film at the Montreal World Film Festival, sail the seas of nostalgia at the Classic Boat Festival, make a temporary switch to Caribbean time at the Reggae Festival, or, if you’re wired a little differently, revel in the white noise of this weekend’s NASCAR race…