Rifflandia Festival 2011 - Sept. 22 - 25Over the last few weeks the lineup for the 2011 Rifflandia Festival has slowly rolled out. Wristbands went on sale at www.rifflandia.com on July 8th and single day passes for the Saturday have already sold out.

The addition of Royal Athletic park as one of the venues is a huge step in the growth of the festival. It’s interesting to note that the same year Rifflandia is expanding, a historic festival with a similar multi-venue format like Bumbershoot in Seattle has declined somewhat from previous years.

With the festival less than two months away, here is a primer of a portion of this year’s Rifflandia lineup that I have seen in concert and have shot video of. You can listen to a band’s album all you want but until you see what they’re like in a live setting, you won’t truly know if the band/artist is good or not.

City and Colour: I got to see Dallas Green’s side project live at Coachella in April and got to witness the rare guest appearance of Gord Downie during ‘Sleeping Sickness.’ Even without Downie, City and Colour is definitely a can’t miss band.

City and Colour- Fragile Bird (live at Coachella 2011)

Broken Social Scene: Broken Social Scene is one of those bands where unless you’re a hardcore fan you often don’t really know who they are until you hear one of their singles and go… “Oh yeah… those guys.” This is one band that has a whole bunch of people who collaborate. One day I’d love to see a BSS show where Feist and Emily Haines are with the rest of the group.

Broken Social Scene- Texico Bitches & 7/4 (Shoreline) (live at Alix Goolden Hall in October 2010)

Click here for more video

Cold War Kids: I’ve seen Cold War Kids at Sasquatch a few years ago and this year at Coachella and each time I’ve totally f’d up my recording of them one way or another. I’m quite excited to see them again and hopefully for a full set this time.

Cold War Kids- Hang Me Out to Dry (live at Coachella 2011)

Click here for more video

Mother Mother: When you force Rifflandia to add a make good second show 2 years ago because the venue couldn’t handle the demand and when you sell out two consecutive days at Alix Goolden Hall, you know a band is special. Royal Athletic Park is guaranteed to become a bit of a dance party when they’re on stage

Mother Mother- The Stand & Body of Years (live at Alix Goolden Hall in March 2011)

Click here for more video

AWOLNATION: The Zone@91.3 FM took a gamble putting AWOLNATION’s ‘Sail’ in their rotation, and it exploded. The end result being a show at Club 9One9 that sold out in minutes. I don’t think the club in its current incarnation has ever seen so much crowd surfing. If the energy of that show is amplified at Royal Athletic Park, it’s going to be incredible.

AWOLNATION- Sail (live at Club 9One9 in April 2011)

Click here for more video

Daniel Wesley: I’ve only seen Daniel Wesley once and only really know the couple singles he’s had on the radio, but I heard his show at Sugar Nightclub’s New Year’s Eve party was fun. Here’s video of Daniel Wesley performing at the 2009 Fringe Festival Block Party

Daniel Wesley- Pilgrimage (live at the Fringe Festival Block Party in April 2009)

Click here for more video

Jets Overhead: Seeing Jets Overhead at Coachella 2010 was one of the coolest moments in my concert experience last year. Here was people you can easily run into walking around downtown Victoria performing at one of the biggest music festivals in North America. Their set at Rifflandia 3 also did not disappoint. Alan Cross even had great things to say about them at a show at the Macpherson Theatre earlier this year. Don’t miss their show.

Jets Overhead- Fully Shed (live at Rifflandia 3 in September 2010)

More video: Coachella 2010 —– Rifflandia 3 —– At Macpherson Playhouse

We Are The City: Winners of the 2009 Peak Performance Project, We Are the City are a fun band to watch. The trio have a unique sound and have entertaining banter. I have only seen them live once and it was in the weird setting of Centennial Square after dark with the only lighting being a work light on the ground, but their talent shined through the low budget setting. I look forward to checking them out again at a better venue.

We Are The City- Astronomers (live at The Fringe Festival Block Party in August 2010)

Click here for more video

Lindsay Bryan: Lindsay Bryan is Top 20 finalist in this year’s Peak Performance Project in Vancouver, one of many competitions this singer/songwriter has been a finalist or won. Her new EP ‘Skyscraper’ due out soon was produced by Ted Gowans of Tegan and Sara and co-produced by Armchair Cynics guitarist, Adam Sutherland. Her lyrics are clever and her music is engaging. Definitely have her set on your short list of what to see.

Lindsay Bryan- Mud Puddles (live at Lucky Bar in March 2011)

Click here for more video

Mike Edel: I have seen Mike Edel live a number of times. I have never seen him have a bad performance whether it be in a concert setting or an impromptu single-take music video session in a stranger’s living room. Mike’s rural Alberta roots shine through in his music. Definitely check out his live video sessions at www.nakedjams.com which I have direct links to below to see how talented this singer/songwriter is.

Mike Edel- In Those Shoes (behind the scenes video of Mike and the “Cadboro Collective’s” naked.jams music video session in March 2010)

More Video: Official “Cadboro Collective” naked.jams session —– Mike Edel naked.jams session —– CD Release Party —– Bastion Square Secret Show

Rococode: Another top 20 finalist for this year’s Peak Performance Project in Vancouver, Rococode absolutely blew me away when I saw them open for Mother Mother in March. I regretted not shooting any video of that show and made it a point to see them again at Club 9One9 in May. This is a band on the rise and the don’t even have a CD to buy yet. Be sure to check out the video they shot with www.greencouchsessions.ca

Rococode- ‘Concentrate On Me’ & ‘Empire’ (live at Club 9One9 in May 2011)

Click here for more video

So that’s my video primer for a small portion of this year’s Rifflandia lineup with examples of video I have shot. In the next while I will be scouring the internet for the best live videos of other artists and sharing them with you.