Alberto E. Rodriguez, Getty One of rock's royal families has just gotten a…
- Posted on Sep 21st 2011 3:30PM by Melody Lau
Tim Mosenfelder, Getty Images
"I guess the festival feels like a 10-year-old," Seligman -- who's also the brother of Stars keyboardist Chris -- tells Spinner. "When I was 10, I was excited that I was finally in my two-digits but, in a way, we're not even in our adolescence yet -- we can ride a bike but we can't get our drivers license!"
Kicking off the 2011 installment is a lineup that includes tUnE-yArDs, Japandroids, Redd Kross, F---ed Up, Andrew W.K., Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks, Yuck and Chromeo. These artists and a slew of others will perform at venues all around the city during the five-day extravaganza, which launches Wednesday, Sept. 21.
Seligman says "there's a story for each booking" and at the beginning of the year organizers create a wish list of bands they'd like to see play the internationally celebrated fest. Past lineups have featured everyone from the Walkmen and Beck to Caribou and Chromeo. This time around, Seligman is most excited for '60s Motown girl-group the Velvelettes and pals (and recent Polaris Prize winners) Arcade Fire.
"We have a good relationship with the Arcade Fire," says Seligman. The Montreal collective graced the stage the second year of the fest and have worked with the Pop Montreal team since on others shows in their hometown. "Two years ago, it didn't work out and then they released 'The Suburbs' and played Osheaga, so we've been talking to them since December about this year [at Pop Montreal]," he says.
After much discussion, they settled on a two-night stand for Arcade Fire, which kicks off Wednesday night (Sept. 21) at the Metropolis, with a free outdoor show the following evening at Place des Festivals of Quartier des Spectacles.
"Our band couldn't exist without Montreal," Arcade Fire's Regine Chassagne said recently in a press release about the pair of Pop Montreal shows. "After having had the chance to tour extensively around the world, we're very excited to finally come home. And to do so the Montreal way, we hoped to play a free outside show, on the very last day of summer as a big 'Thank you' to the beautiful city we love so much. We're happy to be a part of the 10th anniversary of Pop Montreal."
Frontman and b-ball dynamo Win Butler has also put together the first annual 'POP vs. JOCK' Charity Basketball game, with proceeds going towards DJ Sports Club, a non-profit charity in Montreal that offers programs in sports and education to the youth. Bassist Richard Reed Parry will provide a must-see half-time show, with the world premiere of his bicycle symphony called DRONES/Revelations.
Similar to SXSW, Pop Montreal offers a smorgasbord of workshops, lectures (featuring industry pros as well as musicians like Merrill Garbus of tUnE-yArDs) and exhibitions -- and caters to more than just music fans. There are events celebrating art, film and, yes, even crafts. Oh, and there's even some stuff for the little ones, should your tike feel like dropping in on a kiddie sing-along or diving into the tickle trunk at the Pop Montreal dress up photo booth.
Between the rush of show-hopping, the grab-bag of activities offered each day and the opportunity to sample some of Montreal's world-famous poutine (don't forget to do that!), Pop Montreal just might become your favourite fest.
"I'm proud of what we've accomplished," says Seligman, eager to kick off their 10th year. "And I'm excited to grow and get better and better."