Published Dec 02, 2014The minor metropolis of Guelph, Ontario is an oft-missed locale for touring musicians, being surrounded by the likes of Toronto and the Kitchener-Waterloo agglomeration. That being said, the city has a rich history of sonic wonderment. The Guelph Jazz Festival has been drawing major acts since the mid 1990s, and Hillside started getting the neo-hippies dancing a decade before that. The Kazoo! series and festival, and the recently renovated Silence space are lower key but just as powerful in bringing new music to this small city.
Local imprint Missed Connection Records sees the value of Guelph's local music community, having decided to drop a vinyl-only compilation into the mix. On offer are a dozen previously unreleased tracks from a plethora of local acts. The zippy punk-a-billy of Gregory Pepper and His Problems sits across from Minotaurs groovy synth-rock, while Esther Grey lays down a minimalist spy soundtrack. On the flip, the punchy tunes give way to ruminating singer-songwriter material. Lowlands' emotive "Cut Me Up" is a particular highlight here. The label insists that this is the first Guelph-centric vinyl-only compilation since 1986. Judging by the exciting music included here, Compilation No. 1 is a much-needed document; hopefully, there are more to follow. (Missed Connection Records)