April 24th, 2003. NEWS! Actual NEWS! In keeping with the longstanding Ductape tradition of hills and valleys, highs and lows, we have kept quiet for a few months. Things are picking up again, though, starting now! First of all, The Carnations are hard at work on a follow-up to their very excellent, very self-titled CD-EP (DCD-007-2). They've been holed up at the studio for a while now, and still have a bunch more days ahead of 'em. The sounds they have been making are good. Look for the new CD at your local record shops this summer! Or, of course, you can order through this site. Check out www.thecarnations.com for a tour diary and a bunch of tourdates for the months of April and May.

Fans of The Meligrove Band will want to check out www.meligroveband.com for tour details as well. Big things happening for them, including an appearance on CBC Newsworld's Play, hosted by Jian Ghomeshi. Go get some details!

Meanwhile, I've been thinking about deserting this site design and starting a new one. My home-schooled web skills aren't too incredible, but I've been thinking of some stuff. Now I just need the time to put it together! Fingers crossed. Well, my fingers, anyway. You might not care as much.

January 15th, 2003. The four musketeers of Four Square are busy as ever right now, slaving away on preproduction for their follow-up to January's When Weeks Were Weekends long player (DCD-008-2). They've been playing early versions of a few of these songs at shows for a while now, but I'd expect more of 'em at future gigs. As expected, the new songs are their best yet. For proof, go download this song: http://www.foursquarerockcombo.com/HITMAKER.mp3. Oh, and I suppose the inclusion of that link prematurely announces the band's new website which, yes, is located at www.foursquarerockcombo.com. Fans of the band will find plenty of information there, as well as a whole cluster of unreleased MP3s that Simon has graciously included. Go look! And hear!

The Meligrove Band's Let It Grow CD (DCD-009-2) is getting fond reviews from all over the globe. We're so proud. To quote Muro Pettinari of Italy's Kathodik Magazine, "Quindi abbiamo di fronte una guitar-pop band, piacevole e divertente; le giŕ citate prime due tracce, il quasi plagio (Beach Boys) di Check Your Messages, l’eterea Along Comes A Smile, con un leggero filo psichedelico, la divertente e leggera Really, Really, Really, ancora spiagge con The Day After Margaret!"

And, before I forget, I would like to share with you some fond words from Matthias of Germany's Music Scan Magazine: "Alle erste Sahne also und immer mit den nötigen Ecken und Kanten, um das Ganze trotz der vielen zuckersüßen Harmonien nicht zu glatt und poliert werden zu lassen!"

North Americans like it, too! Emily Rems from New York's Bust Magazine said she "crushed out" on the Meligroves and was "overstimulated" by them; she didn't specify, however, whether it was the music or the full colour body shots that had her hooked. Either way -- gross! I mean -- hot!

Visit www.meligroveband.com if you're not Emily Rems. If you are Emily Rems, visit Mississauga!

Have you seen the video for "Scream & Yell" by The Carnations yet? It's been in steady rotation on MuchMusic for a few months now, and rightfully so. It's a hell of a song, and the video does it justice. Request it by e-mailing ondemand@muchmusic.com. Or, as Steve from the Carnations keeps suggesting, "go down to the corner of Queen & John and start screaming and yelling. And when they ask you why you're doing it, tell them you're screaming and yelling for the Carnations." He promises "bonus points" to anyone who tries it. No word on what the points go to, or who's keeping score.

Also, Carnations fans ("Carn-heads"? "Carn-ivores"? "Carnotites"? "Carnies"? Yes, "Carnies"!) will be glad to know that the band's been holed up in a studio doing preproduction on their next record for the past little while. Every song is likely a winner. It's too early to talk about the full length, but it'll come out one day. Maybe I'll tell you about it, or maybe they'll tell you about it. Whoever. You'll know, is the point. Oh, Carnies, you'll know. See www.thecarnations.com for more.

Tireless in their efforts to release their music all over the world, Dead Letter Dept. have spent the last little while working on having their stuff put out in all kinds of interesting places that do not begin with "O" and end with "rillia". UK kids continue to go totally crazy for the DLD posse, which is good, considering singer/guitarist Rob Moir has been thinking of buying some real estate over there and settling down. 

That's not true, but this is -- www.deadletterdept.com is being renovated by a real web-do-er-person and will be up any day now. Check a lot. Everyone wants you to see it. It'll be so nice. Go there for your Dead Letter Dept. fix next time you become weak and needy. There's other news with these guys, but none of it's confirmed. So... more for next time.

November 20th, 2002. Record labels aren't really supposed to take the summer off, but that's effectively what Ductape wound up doing this year. That's okay, though. Everything's back in full swing now. Welcome. 

The first piece of big news is this October's release of Let It Grow, the sophomore release by The Meligrove Band. This is actually a co-release with Ductape and Winnipeg's Endearing Records, who also put out records by Julie Doiron and The Salteens. This is the first co-release we've been involved with since 1997's Squeegee Girl seven inch by Marilyn's Vitamins. Anyway, the new record is fantastic, and long-time fans won't be disappointed. A little more contemplative, a little more developed, but still catchy and Meligrovey. October 15th is the release date, so keep your eyes peeled or order it through Ductape mailorder (soon). If you're in Toronto, there'll be a release party at Lee's Palace on October 17th with The Carnations and The Bicycles. See the live page for details.  

Four Square has been busy, too. Frontman Simon Head wrote and performed the theme song for a show called Ace Lightning that'll be all over your TV sets real soon. Also, the band will be playing a couple shows with Treble Charger at the beginning of October. Again, check that live page for more.

The Carnations are editing their video for "Scream & Yell" and doin' demos for the next record. They're also doing three shows with The English Beat and a show at a pop festival in Montreal, so put on your dancing shoes and go to those shows. Early. So you see the openers, I mean. And Dead Letter Dept. are busy as ever, constantly planning tours and releasing songs all over the place. See www.deadletterdept.com for all kinds of info.

June 9th, 2002. The Carnations did a bang-up job opening up for Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, by the way. So bang-up, in fact, that their set prompted David Raymaker of The Globe & Mail to write this: "In front of a tough crowd and plagued by technical problems, they rose to the occasion with an uplifting set of spine-tingling pop gems, played with verve and swagger. Definitely a band to keep tabs on." Thanks, David Raymaker. Kick-ass. I managed to enjoy the show too, despite being alternately nervous, tired, and hysterical. And all I did was sell stuff... 

Before I sign off, I thought I'd pass on an official statement from Rob Moir, lead singer and guitarist of the always-touring Dead Letter Dept. from a stop in Kentucky: "Things are decent." There you have it, folks.

June 3rd, 2002. Remember when I said that a full update would be online by month's end? It was April when I said that. Now it's June. How time flies. There are a few important updates that you should know about, however, so I'll get to them now.

To begin with, The Meligrove Band have just completed their stellar follow-up to 1999's Stars & Guitars LP (DCD-005-2). I'm pretty sure I know what it's gonna be called, too, but since it's changed about six times, it won't be announced until the artwork starts. Maybe even later. Fickle goons... It really is a great record, though. Jillion-part harmonies and haunting chip-chewing. Different than before, but a natural progression. That's all I'll say for now.

Secondly, The Carnations will be opening for the retardedly-hyped but still cool Black Rebel Motorcycle Club at Lee's Palace on Thursday, June 6th. They're on at 10pm, right before BRMC. Go if you have a ticket. Don't go if you don't. If you're a music critic, you're probably on the guest list. Otherwise, it's sold out.

Dead Letter Dept. is visiting the badlands of America right now, playing songs from their latest eponymous EP as well as a few from their forthcoming full length to little kids with backwards baseball caps and knapsacks. They're having fun. The van is still breathing, and so are they. They want me to update their website, but I'm having trouble. Honest! 

Four Square had a great show a few weeks ago with Bigwig here in Toronto at the Opera House. There were two girls wearing capes.

April 16th, 2002. So I took a bit of time off from the site. I've been busy, okay? I don't even have much time to do a full update right now, but there are a few things that I thought I'd jot down. First of all, if you're planning on heading down to the Air Canada Centre tonight for that big Edge 102 Rock Fiesta, please do support our Carnations! They hit the stage just after the Headstones and before Edwin & The Pressure. That's 6:30pm. Also playing tonight will be Sloan, The Tea Party, and David Usher. Big show!

Also, regarding Ductape Radio... Our three-year stint at Iceberg Media, Inc. has come to an abrupt halt due to issues. That's the best way of answering that question, I think. "Issues came up." We're looking for a new home. If you have any questions or want more details, you can write me at zach@ductape.org.

Lastly, we're starting a new magazine here at Ductape. It won't be called that, though, unlike the 'zine that gave birth to this label. We're toying with a few names. More details to come over the summer, but you'll probably see the first issue hit the stands in September.

Thanks for reading this haphazard update! A full one will be up here by the month's end.

February 1st, 2002. Things have been looking good for The Carnations these days. Their latest EP, available now on Ductape Records, has been picking up four- and five-star reviews everywhere it goes. "Remember their name," raves the Ottawa Xpress. "I'm sure we're going to hear much, much more from them. Purely smashing." Thanks to our friends at radio across Canada for keeping the boys on high rotation, too. We love you. Don't forget to catch 'em with The Weakerthans in February and The Mooney Suzuki in March! Oh, and this just in -- The Meligrove Band have been added to the aforementioned Mooney Suzuki bill. Go make some noise for our heroes of rock. Check the live page for full details.

Also, today happens to be the release date for Four Square's debut full length, When Weeks Were Weekends. Go to a store and buy it now. If they don't have it, order it. Then buy it. Or just get it from us. Anyway, buy it.

Lastly, you should know that the elusive Moops are currently wrapping up production on their debut full length. When I asked one member of the band (who, for security purposes, will remain anonymous) if he was happy with the way the record turned out, he said, "Yeah." Now that's enthusiasm. Street date and other details to come shortly.

Oh, and fans of The Meligrove Band will (probably) be glad to know that the fellas are co-producing their next album with Mr. Steve Pitkin of the delightful Flashing Lights! The band plans to have the record in the can by the end of March 2002, so we're shooting for a summer release here at the label. No word yet on which songs will be making the cut, but go support the Meligroves at any of their upcoming shows and let 'em know which ones you dig the most. Again, check the live page for full details.

That's all for now. Remember, though -- you never know when we'll play some of these new demos from Ductape bands on Ductape Radio...

January 31st, 2002. Dates have been set for the Ductape showcase at this year's Canadian Music Week festivities. Actually, there's only one date -- March 1st. Despite earlier rumours that we're actually going "halfsies" on the showcase with Endearing Records, we've gone ahead and split the showcase three ways with both Endearing and Smallman Records. Four Square will be reppin' Ductape at that show, so go watch 'em. Moneen, Projektor, and a few others will also be appearing. Also, The Meligrove Band have been moved to an altogether different bill. CMW madness! Check the live page for full details.

January 14th, 2002. New website up. Exhausted from all the layout and scanning of my own chicken scratch. I am reminded of the time I used a hand-written logo on a Ductape sticker. Scanners add ten pounds to my handwriting. Also, the new Four Square record, When Weeks Were Weekends (DCD-008-2) will be out on February 1st, 2002. We're taking orders now, though, so start mailing!

January 12th, 2002. Our very own The Carnations will be opening up for The Weakerthans as they celebrate five years as a band (The Weakerthans, that is) at Lee's Palace in Toronto on February 16th, 2002. There's an all ages matinee (with The Carnations and Toronto's rock 'n' roll champs Blurtonia) and a 19+ night show (with The Carnations and Toronto's Royal City). Go early and support the hometown gents. For more information, visit Lee's Cyber Palace (sounds hot!).

January 11th, 2002. On January 23rd, 2002, Ductape Radio will be celebrating its 150th show! I don't know what we're gonna do yet, but I'll be sure to bring lots of great tunes and maybe even some clips from our favourite shows of the last three years. Lots of people have been asking us to re-air the Crooked Fingers and Weakerthans live sets from 2000, and though we can't re-broadcast the entire shows, we can play some selections from their respective sets. As always, if there's anything you'd like to hear on the show, or any bands you think we've been unfairly neglecting, send us an e-mail at radio@ductape.org and we'll see if we can help you out.

December 20th, 2001. Thanks to the good people who attended the Seven Years of Ductape bash at Lee's Palace in Toronto this past December. Our first 19+ label showcase, and people actually came! A good number of you, even. You make us feel like champions. Sorry to all the underagers who really wanted to come out, but we couldn't really find anywhere to do an all ages night show within budget. Maybe next year! (Maybe not. -- future Ed.)