This year I am given’er 110 to try and see as many shows as possible during Toronto’s NXNE. In an attempt to do and see it all I’ve opted to forgo sleep and run around the city, hitting up as many venues as my body will physically allow. Here are the shows I made it to Thursday June13th.

1) Paper Thick Walls @ The Boat

A perfect start to my NXNE experience – this Chicago band has an indie-folk sound, and tons of heart. This was one of the bands I found just through researching the NXNE schedule, and a great find at that. I was definitely surprised more people didn’t come out for the show!

2) DIANA @ The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern

After reading countless articles on DIANA, I knew the show was a must-see on Thursday’s itinerary. Unfortunately due to the high volume of tall, bearded, plaid wearing men, it was al little difficult to actually see the want. From what I heard though, they were great!

3) The Lighthouse and the Whaler @ Cameron House

Easily my favourite show of the night, and one of the bands I was most looking forward to seeing. I discovered this band on line a few months back, and often listen to them while I’m at work, and the definitely didn’t disappoint. A feel good set that had me dancing and wishing they would play a little longer. The main singer’s ponytail, toms, and rolled up jeans also didn’t hurt.

4) Brad Butcher @ Free Times Café

Chosen solely based on location and timing, this show was a great surprise and a much needed moment to sit down and recharge. Playing an acoustic show in the back ground of Free Times Café, this Australian native played a number of his own original songs, as well as a flawless Ray Lamontagne cover.

5) Blue Hawaii @ Comfort Zone

This was when the night took a turn for the seriously weird, and seriously great. I missed them open for Purity Ring back in April, so I was looking forward to finally getting a chance to see them play. This synth-pop Monreal duo put on an amazing show, and it was obvious some people were having the time of their lives. I realize now I probably should I have warned the friend I brought exactly what she was getting into. She spent the first 10 minutes of the show looking slightly frightened.

A necessary stop to grab some chow mein, and I was on my way home to sleep briefly before being expected in the office Friday morning. But as I like to say, you can sleep when you’re dead people!

Bedtime: 4AM
Hours of sleep: 3

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