Live music galleries

Live music galleries: Amos The Transparent [2018]

(I got the idea for this series while sifting through the ‘piles’ of digital photos on my laptop. It occurred to me to share some of these great pics from some of my favourite concert sets from time to time. Until I get around to the next one, I invite you to peruse my ever-growing list of concerts page.)

Amos The Transparent at Ottawa Dragonboat festival 2018

Artist: Amos The Transparent
When: June 21st, 2022
Where: Ottawa Dragonboat Festival, Mooney Bay Park
Context: In just over a month, local Ottawa indie rockers Amos The Transparent are playing a show at the legendary Neat Cafe out in Burnstown to celebrate the 10th anniversary of their sophomore record, 2012’s “Goodnight My Dear…I’m Falling Apart”. It’s a show I really would have loved to have seen but it just so happens that the show sold out yesterday. Of course, thinking wistfully about missing this show got me reminiscing on the four other times that I did get to experience the six-piece orchestral indie rock outfit, the final of which was just over four years ago (for free) at Ottawa’s Dragonboat festival. They were slotted in at the opening spot for the evening but they played like headliners and had a great time doing so. Ever the crowdpleasers, they made sure to play a representative selection of fan favourites from all four of their records, not at all leaning heavily on the album they had just released. To show my appreciation, I made sure to take the opportunity to stop by the merch tent to pick up this latest album, as well as the aforementioned sophomore record, for my vinyl collection. It’s more than likely that you’ve never heard of this band so I recommend you remedy this wrong posthaste.
Point of reference song: I’m going to make you cry

Jonathan Chandler of Amos The Transparent
Olenka Reshitnyk of Amos The Transparent
James Nicol of Amos The Transparent
Christopher Wilson on the drums
Dan Hay, guitar hero
Mike Yates on the cello
Mike, Dan, and Olenka
Jonathan and Olenka rocking out

Best tunes of 2012: #16 Amos the Transparent “Sure as the weather”

<< #17    |    #15 >>

I first came across local band, Ottawa’s own Amos the Transparent, in 2010, when I saw them perform on an early Sunday evening set in only my second year attending Ottawa Bluesfest. I had only briefly sampled a couple of their tracks in advance but their big band energy had me visiting the merch tent afterwards to pick up a CD copy of their debut album, “Everything I’ve forgotten to forget”. I listened to that album quite a bit in the months that followed and couldn’t help being drawn in by the fine songwriting by band architect, Jonathan Chandler. Just as impressive was such excellent production and ambitious scope for a indie band that I just couldn’t get my head around was local.

Just over a year later in December 2011, I somehow caught wind that Amos the Transparent had recorded a video for a new song off an upcoming new record. I watched the fun, all-in-one-take video that you yourself can watch below and then, I watched it again. And then, the next day, I forced my wife Victoria to watch it with me. The video did its job. I was hooked.

A couple of months later, the group held an album release party for “Goodnight, my dear… I’m falling apart” at the now defunct Ritual night club. It was a great night where I was also introduced to the music of big-voiced Haligonian, Ben Caplan, and that was topped by the seven members of Amos the Transparent squeezing their big presence on to the tiny stage and blowing the roof off the place. I took home a CD copy of the album from that performance too because I was still a couple of months removed from starting my vinyl collection, though I remedied that at another Amos show a few years ago. For those of you too far afield to have heard this group, “Goodnight, my dear…” is an excellent, big, Canadian indie rock record in the vein of “Funeral” or “Set yourself on fire”, but in addition to the orchestral elements those two albums sport, Amos throws in some traditional folk instrumentation for fun.

Take today’s song, “Sure as the weather”, for an example. If you watch the song’s video without sound and note the varied instruments that the band pulls out – pedal steel, banjo, accordion, and cello – you could be forgiven for expecting a rollicking indie folk track. The sound on, you check off the “rollicking” box but also observe how much the tune rocks and how these varied instruments lend their distinctive sounds to the blended whole. Indeed, Amos the Transparent is built around the songwriting of Jonathan Chandler but they really are a collaborative beast, both in the way they build the songs up and tear them down and the way they harmonize and gang up on the listener with their collective voices, and in this case, singing with optimism for better days.

“I don’t want to hear about your bad weekend
And I don’t want to hear about not trusting your friends
And I don’t really care if no one’s left to blame
It’s going to be okay”

For the rest of the Best tunes of 2012 list, click here.


Vinyl love: Amos the Transparent “This cold escape”

(Vinyl Love is a series of posts that quite simply lists, describes, and displays the pieces in my growing vinyl collection. You can bet that each record was given a spin during the drafting of each corresponding post.)

Artist: Amos the transparent
Album Title: This cold escape
Year released: 2014
Details: ice blue vinyl, normal weight, gatefold jacket, signed

The skinny: The third full-length album by local Ottawa indie rockers is a concept album that seems to deal with choices, aging, dreams, and love. It plays like a symphonic journey through memories and dreams and reality. Lovely stuff.

Standout track: “That’s the life for me”