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2009 has proven to be a standout year for the 7 inch, well, at least as far as I'm concerned. My collection practically doubled this year, which is mostly due to starting up the radio show and developing an appetite medium. It seemed as if a new band, label and a blog that loves 'em was popping up every damn week. And despite what the local press, who clearly had their collective head up their asses (or at least weren't willing to look beyond their pile of shitty promos), had to say about this year, 2009 was and continues to be phenomenal for music, particularly in the DIY end of the pool.
The year started off great with the announcement of Hozac's first singles club, most of which have been pretty damn good so far (still waiting on the TeePee and Flight 7 inches). Next year they've already lined up the Fresh & Onlys for their singles club, so you can consider me signed up no matter who else they add.
Sweet Rot's another label that I'd probably buy blindly from, and 2009 was the second great year in a row from the local label, which, for the first time, released a local single. The Sex Church 7 inch got damn near universal acclaim (at least when it came to local rags and blogs) and justly so. Their darkly woven blend of Spacemen 3's aeronautical repetition and the Cheater Slicks garage grit, combined with their own ghostly and hollow twin guitar assault, resulted in a stunning live show and the best local 7 inch these ears have graced in some time. A record for Convulsive is rumored for release sometime next year (?!). Confirmation anyone?
Captured Tracks had a busy inaugural year, though there was plenty of filler from the overly-prolific label. The definite stand-outs were the warbled bliss pop of the Mayfair Set (Dum Dum Girls+Blank Dogs), the retro-futuristic post-punk of Roman Soldiers (Gary War+Blank Dogs) and the lo-fi and nasally anthems of Toronto's Little Girls. Looks like Captured Tracks will be focusing on full lengths next year, included a new LP by the Tim Cohen (Fresh and Onlys frontman), the UK's Wetdog and Dignan Porch, and, hey, looky here, a 12 inch and LP from Vancouver's very own Cosmetics. More on them in a later post...
Single of the year (pictured at the top of the post), and quite possibly their best track ever, goes to Sic Alps' L. Mansion off their Slumberland single. Sic Alps tracks have a tendency to get lodged in the skull for a day or two, but L. Mansion hasn't left the building since the day I heard it. A perfect slice of garage-psych-pop-whatever. Let's hope they can knock it out of my brain by playing it next week when they hit the Rickshaw Theatre with Magik Markers. Plenty going on that night, but yr certainly not gonna want to miss this one. The band's should also have their tour-only split 12 inch on Yik-Yak Records for sale.
The rest of these singles speak for themselves, and there's been plenty written about most of 'em. Part II of the 2009's best seven inches airs next week, followed by the best in LPs & 12 inches, then we should have some time for the year in cassettes. Until then, keep diggin'.