“Everything feels new,” sings Nirmala Basnayake on Controller.Controller’s debut, X-Amounts. “I know that’s what you’re here for.” It’s a fair assessment of why the buzz built so quickly around these Canadians who shirk the angular rock of their Toronto brethren in favor of beat-driven, danceable post-punk.
There’s no romantic story about the origins of Controller.Controller: Guitarist Ronnie Morris put out a call for talented musicians in 2002 and found three who could help him make the impulsive sound he was after. After Basnayake sat in on a few sessions, she joined the group for a set of 2003 shows in Toronto, and her thick vocals wrapped tightly and effortlessly around the band’s heady instrumentals. Controller.Controller then signed with Toronto-based imprint Paper Bag (Stars, Broken Social Scene) which released the History EP in 2004.
More confrontational than History, X-Amounts channels Basnayake’s inner aggressiveness. “You should swallow every word I say,” she spits on “Poison/Safe,” “so you can spit them out when you cry.”
Controller.Controller are currently wrapping a tour. Here are the remaining dates:
3/7, Seattle, WA (Fun House) 3/8, Portland, OR (Towne Lounge)3/11, San Francisco, CA (Popscene)3/12, Los Angeles, CA (Echo)3/14, Tuscon, AZ (Hotel Congress) 3/18, Austin, TX (Club de Ville — SXSW)