Matt Hart is mostly known for his musical work under the name The Russian Futurists. Matt is currently a co-host on “Indie Mornings with Brian, Matt and Candice” on Indie88.
If you like your pop grown up and orchestral, look no further than Halifax’s Heavy Blinkers. The band who is now just Jason MacIsaac, were part of an initial wave of Canadian bands that made inroads overseas without getting any press in their homeland. My band The Russian Futurists were part of that wave in the early 2000’s and I can tell you that it was beyond bizarre to be featured in massive music publications overseas while still having trouble booking shows in your hometown. Of course the Canadian media came calling on us all once we had received “cool” status from the US and UK, but that’s a story that continues to play itself out year after year here in our country. This was a time before Broken Social Scene and Arcade Fire had exploded internationally and Canadian indie wasn’t a hot commodity. This was also the time when I, like many others, heard the Heavy Blinkers’ sophisticated, string-drenched music for the first time. Their sound was so different from the scrappy, jangly indie pop sound of that time that they couldn’t help but stand out like a sore thumb. I personally think that your music should stand out like a sore thumb if you’re doing it right. After 5 albums and a 9 year hiatus they return with the ambitious and gorgeous Health. Their sound is comparable to post-Pet Sounds era Beach Boys or Sean O’Hagan’s High Llamas which is to say sweeping and cinematic all at once. Health is quite an achievement and features singer/songwriter Jenn Grant guesting on many songs. I love the record, I love the band and I’m happy to share the full album stream of Health by Heavy Blinkers (via Exclaim!).
p.s. If you like this sort of thing their back catalogue is full of brilliantly written gems and huge production.