Handlebar has a motif that's obvious. In a city where the bi-wheeled are often maligned and fodder for near civil warfare, this Kensington Market bar is a haven.
There are bronzed bikes anchored on the wall, and for those who wear their cyclists' hearts on their sleeves, this place is almost cartoonishly perfect.
The space is long and narrow. In a room at the back, you'll find a stage that's small enough to be more appropriate for comedic stand-up than music. The seating area is split into small tables, and there's a roomy patio littered with season-appropriate poolside chairs.
Handlebar is not a space for those with fancy tastes. Beers ($6.25) and whiskies ($6.50 for a Maker's) are the focus here, which is not necessarily bad for the weary palate.
Their bar menu is similarly unpretentious, serving homey favourites such as spaghetti and meatballs or tacos. The dishes vary daily, but hover around $6.
There are places that go out of their way to push you out of your comfort zone, but that's not the case here. At Handlebar intimacy is not only possible, but seems to be encouraged.
Its Kensington location also proves to be an advantage; it not only works with all the other bars in the area, but answers to what they're missing.
Kurt Marble EP release
w/ Blonde Elvis
Ducks Unlimited - band
MUSIC BETWEEN BANDS BY NONE OTHER THAN JULIA DICKENS SHE RULES
Saturday April 1
10pm Ducks Unlimited
11pm Kurt Marble
12am Blonde Elvis
ALTERED BY MOM is the new alternative. See them now at Handlebar or next year at the Air Canada Centre...
Altered By Mom
The Drywall Heels
Saturday April 15
Experimentally-minded blog/booking agency SBVRSV.Press and Windsor-based label Museum of Skin have come together to present a showcase of left-field sounds ranging from lo-fi MIDI walkthroughs to industrial rave-pop and everything in between.
The bill features Toronto's very own Graham Kartna and Fusechild along with Windsor digital legends Tigerwing and Hustle Flesh. Only $5 for a tripped-out night of far-out (and fun!) vibes.
Graham Kartna (fun machine, brainfood)
Tigerwing (industrial pop princess)
Fusechild (jungle, melodic breakbeat)
Hustle Flesh (abstrakt, sample-heavy vgm)
"Nostalgia for the future"
Vancouver's Mint Records are hosting an unofficial/official Canadian Music Week showcase featuring:
New Fries (Toronto)
Faith Healer (Edmonton)
Renny Wilson (Montreal)
Heaven For Real (Halifax/Toronto)
Saturday April 22 | 9pm
$5 or free with a CMW wristband
Heaven For Real 10:15pm
Renny Wilson 11pm
Faith Healer 11:45pm
New Fries 12:30am
04.12.17 . THE PiNG presents DIRTY INPUTS + dreamSTATE vs. HEIKI + GENERAL CHAOS VISUALS
WEDNESDAY APRIL 12TH @ HANDLEBAR 159 Augusta Avenue . Door @ 8:30pm . $8-10
.. 09:00 . dreamSTATE vs. Heiki . dreamSTATE's Scott M2 & Jamie Todd join forces again with Heiki Sillaste to celebrate the release of their new “Stone Shore” EP - recorded live in Christ's Church Cathedral in Hamilton. Expect a set of spectral atmospheric drones and churning liquid grooves as they map the shifting shorelines of Canadian ambient electronica. dreamSTATE have blazed trails in live ambient soundscape performances since 1995 and bring you THE AMBiENT PiNG and DRONE:KLUB. Heiki Sillaste was a founding member of groups such as Digital Poodle, Kinder Atom and Lazer Caps. Since 1987, Heiki has released an impressive catalogue of well over 45 synthesizer-based records and made over 150 compilation appearances.
.. 10:00 . DIRTY INPUTS . Dirty Inputs is Aaron Dawson, a musician and VJ based in Toronto, Canada. Dawson was part of the Toronto ambient drone collective Off The International Radar. Having grown up in a small town in the Rocky Mountain foothills of western Canada, moving to the continent’s fourth largest metropolis has produced conflicting desires for nature and technology. Dirty Inputs’ euphoric synth-driven soundscapes search for the beach between these desires, between the beautiful and the terrifying. This focus has created a body of work that is often dark and brooding, and other times joyful and emotional. It is an attempt to strip away the hype and rhetoric in society to reveal the plain truths and humble existence of humankind staring into the void.
This month at Handlebar
• • Live Music and Interactive Visuals presented by Subtle Blend • •
Live sets by
∆ N Z O L ∆(Sp404SX / MicroKorg / Pocket Piano / Effects)
Pursuit Grooves (Sp 555)
Videos by Kazuya Ito as Toi Whakairo
Music by Kozue Sato.
This edition of the Nite is the second of three album release shows in a row! We're extremely excited to welcome Ada Vale's new release into the world, as well a new show by Blank Nurse/No Light.
ADA VALE - 10pm
Official release party for Wild Dog Winter, the third album in a continuing series.
Ada Vale is a gothic-pop news-opera created by Toronto composer Math Rosen. In a world of psychoactive soil and rigged elections, Ada tells a serialized story through music, theatre, fiction, and paint. Live performances combine electronics, telepathy, and physicality, in collaboration with Polynomials Dance & Movement Theatre.
BLANK NURSE/NO LIGHT - 9pm
Blank Nurse/No Light is an experimental electronic project from Evan Davies (Several Futures, Republic of Safety, Ghostly Graves) that began as a way to exorcise personal demons. Then came occult sonic ritual. Influences are disparate, but somehow sewn together: violence, snakes and knives with quiet introspection; tension, talons and long shadows with catharsis. Narratives for a bleak world where harm comes from above, as from below.