The Ramblin' Valley Band @ The Branch on Thursday, 7 p.m., PWYC
Fans of bluegrass, take note: The Ramblin' Valley Band will woo you with its songs about long, empty roads and relationships in the rear-view.
The five-member Ottawa band's debut six-song EP, Farm Days, is a seamless blend of dueling guitar and banjo, brimming with back-porch harmonies. With a roomy and organic sound, it's as if someone pressed "record" on an impromptu jam session, capturing all the spontaneity and celebration of the moment.
It gives you a sense of what to expect from The Ramblin' Valley Band's show in Kemptville on Thursday night, when they'll take to The Branch to play the EP live.
Twist @ Pressed on Friday, 8 p.m., $7
A couple of guitars, a drum machine and purring vocals that drip with reverb. That's the recipe for Twist.
The duo came about when Brian Borcherdt met a Toronto musician named Laura Hermiston to talk about producing a record for her band, The BB Guns. Before long, the pair was recording 60s-style torch anthems with a gnawing, muddy, melancholic edge.
On Friday, you'll see Twist's newest incarnation as a full band for its headlining set at Pressed. London group So Young is also in town for the show, with Ottawa's Trails rounding out the bill. Although $7 is the suggested cover, organizers ask that you simply pay what you can.
After Funk @ The Rainbow Bistro on Saturday, 9 p.m., $10
On Saturday night, The Rainbow hosts After Funk — a next-generation power-funk band that incorporates the best elements of jazz, gospel and groovy instrumental jam-outs.
The Toronto four-piece's latest album, 'Til the Sun Comes Up, features a bombastic horn section and a who's-who of diverse collaborators, including Canadian hip-hop pioneer Choclair. While you shouldn't expect a surprise appearance from the rapper at After Funk's Ottawa show, you can count on a set of upbeat, fat-bass-filled tunes — and chocolate-themed musical treats of a different kind, in the form of Ottawa's Chocolate Hot Pockets.
Medora @ Le Petit Chicago on Sunday, 8:30 p.m., $5
With a wealth of great Francophone music in Canada, all it takes is a night out in Vieux Hull to get a sense of the best up-and-coming acts from our region and beyond. Case in point: Sunday night at Le Petit Chicago, where Medora is set to be the next featured act in the venue's bi-weekly "Trash Ta Vie" showcase series.
The young Quebec City band blends hazy pop melodies with occasionally thunderous art-rock, for a sound that's beautiful, with teeth. Glimpses of Medora's new album, Les Arômes, suggest the band is branching into slightly darker, more eccentric territory, and it suits them well. They'll celebrate the release of the album at Sunday's show.