Guys, we’ve been through a lot. We hosted our own showcase with Hand Drawn Dracula and Scion, we got mopey with National—the current cover stars of our mag—and we saw, like, a zillion shows. It’s been fun, but today’s the last day of NXNE 2013. It will, however, go out with a bang. Here are our must-see picks for tonight.
By Tyler Munro (TM), Chayne Japal (CJ), Mark Teo (MT), and Nicole Villeneuve (NV).
Joey Bada$$ at Yonge-Dundas Square
Joey Bada$$ is a retro-rap paradox, earning comparisons to a handful of New York’s elite MCs that peaked before the 18-year-old MC was even born. But don’t let his age fool you; if Odd Future proved that boastful teens could justify their own arrogance and exuberance with talent, Joey’s here to justify the hype with a different kind of quiet confidence. Comparisons to Nas and C.L. Smooth aren’t so much unjustified as they are unfair, but with no proper full length under his belt, they’ve at least got to be exciting. 8 p.m. at Yonge-Dundas Square. 1 Dundas St. E. (TM)
Ludacris at Yonge-Dundas Square
Cadillac bills, Cadillac grills, check out… how insanely hard Luda’s “Raised in the South” is. Plus: You know the entire city’s going to be at Yonge and Dundas for this set. 9 p.m. at Yonge-Dundas Square. 1 Dundas St. E. (MT)
Non-Stop Girls at Crawford
Drummer Pat McCormack is absolutely everywhere: He’s the volunteer coordinator for NXNE, and he plays for local bands like Neon Windbreaker, Sam Coffey and the Iron Lungs, and Modern Superstitions. But Non-Stop Girls might be his most unhinged venture: It’s beer-soaked garage-pop that’s brimming with pounding drums, gritty guitars, and vocals that sound like they’ve been recorded through a telephone receiver. It’s the kind of stuff that’d slot in perfectly on Burger Records’ roster—as is the rest of Mustache Rides’ NXNE showcase—so, if that’s your bag, head to the Crawford to end your festival right. 9 p.m. at The Crawford. 718 College St. (MT)
Ell V Gore at The Garrison
Pickings are decidedly slimmer for Sunday—most of us will be catching Luda bring down the house at Yonge-Dundas Square—but NXNE isn’t dead yet. (Though mercifully, it’ll end tomorrow. Our hangover, however, won’t.) Tonight’s under-the-radar pick undeniably belongs to Ell V Gore, whose amphetamine-charged post-punk has been creating waves all year—”Lobotomy,” below, earned the band well-deserved critical props, and they recently cut the Sex Static 12-inch on Ben Cook’s Bad Actors label. (Which dropped right in the thick of NXNE—they released the record on a bill with Tonstartssbandht and Dream Affair.) Their live show’s among the city best, and will be a sure energizer for the sweaty, exhausted masses. 10 p.m. at The Garrison. 1197 Dundas St. W. (MT)