Current Obsession: the indie record label that launched Feist and Broken Social Scene opens up its photo album
Whenever a local band or performer blows up internationally these days, it feels almost routine. For that, we can thank Arts and Crafts, the DIY label that helped make Toronto an indie-rock haven. Arts and Crafts was created a decade ago to release Broken Social Scene’s sophomore album You Forgot It in People, which turned that sprawling soap opera of a group into musical ambassadors. Mega-selling records from Stars and Feist followed, and the label soon became the home of the city’s hippest acts, plus a few rising international bands. The sudden success begat backlashes and counter-backlashes, and more than a few easily bruised egos—which just made the whole thing more fun to watch. This month, Arts and Crafts celebrates its 10th anniversary with an all-day music festival at Fort York featuring some of its biggest stars, including Feist, Cold Specks, Timber Timbre, England’s Bloc Party and a one-night-only Broken Social Scene reunion. In addition to the concert, the label is hosting an exhibition of intimate portraits by Norman Wong at a pop-up gallery on Queen West. In the photos, the musicians look cocky, confident and cool—stars of a scene that continues to break big.
A&C X Norman Wong
1093 Queen St. W.
To June 15