The 2009 Pop Montreal festival kicked off last night with an opening party at a little warehouse on Hutchison that turned into a local fashion show. The clothes were interesting, but it was the music that I'd made the trip for, and I began my night by catching a five-piece rock act from Sao Paulo, Brazil, called Holger. It was a much better way to get the four-night festival going than any catwalk could be.
A little bit Vampire Weekend, a little bit Passion Pit and a lot of fun, the band seems as enamored with African roots and American indie as the tropicalia of their homeland, singing songs in English to an appreciative crowd. Most of the five members took a turn on the mic, though no obvious frontman emerged. The keyboardist took it up an octave into Michael Angelekos territory to sometimes painful effect. But if the vocals weren't always tuneful, the music made up for it.
I did a little search for them on YouTube this morning and came across this very cool video. It seems like these guys are ready for a more international stage.