Maica Mia The Garrison, Toronto ON, June 18
Published Jun 19, 2014The room was sparsely populated for an early set from this noisy duo from Montreal, but it didn't much matter. Guitar/vocalist Maica Armata and drummer Jonny Paradise blazed through their short set as though they were lost in their own world. Armata's hollow body guitar was loud, muddy, and raw, an exposed nerve. Her chording is rudimentary, her fingerpicking is by turns lazy and muscular, and her mumbled vocals add texture if not grace to numbers like opener "Wish." For his part, pounding on the drums at a slow drag, Paradise is always substantially behind the beat until he leaps suddenly ahead of it. (Touring without regular bassist Mauro Pezzente, also of Godspeed You! Black Emperor, one wonders just how different this duo must sound when anchored to a bass line.) The result is messy, incongruous and yet strangely compelling. The kind of primordial garage experimentation that drives Maica Mia's sound is always a hit and miss affair, but once they find their groove, it's hard to deny. Looking forward to more from them.