WuFest brings together all that is good in Ottawa. No, unfortunately it doesn’t celebrate the legendary Wu-Tang Clan, but it does bring together some of Canada’s (untapped) talent in a celebration of creativity — specifically the musical and photographic kind.
Ming Wu is the prolific and omnipresent concert photographer who has been snapping away at whatever interesting cultural events Ottawa has hosted since 2008. He also serves as one of the main driving forces behind the weekend-long WuFest. Along with The Black Sheep Inn, Ottawa Showbox, CHUO 89.1 FM, and Wu’s own Photogmusic, the festival unites a few of the country’s independent musical talent under The Black Sheep’s renowned roof for two days of melodious bliss.
And their lineup is sure to satisfy your auditory needs. If you’re in the mood to hear some French mixed in to your evening, then Ottawa folk band Moonfruits’ opening night is not one you want to miss. Creating a new sound that somehow brings the comforting familiarity of your favourite yesteryear’s tunes, Moonfruits should be setting a good tone for the rest of WuFest.
Although not part of the NCR, Montreal will actually be getting a double-bill this festival. If you’re looking for some folk music with an experimental vibe, AroarA is definitely a great bet. The band, composed of Andrew Whiteman (Broken Social Scene, Apostle the Hustle) and Ariel Engle, mixes ethereal lyrics with harsher, almost tribal, sounds — ensuring that each song is an experience all its own.
Also hailing from Montreal is Little Scream, a name that could not suit an artist more. Having her sound already described as “graceful folk, coiled pop, and expansive art rock,” Little Scream explores the harmony that seemingly discordant sounds make when brought together in music. With an avant-garde vibe, this multitalented musician is sure to give an unforgettable show.
Ottawa native Giant Hand will also be performing at WuFest. Combining a gentle voice with lyrics that could make you cry, Giant Hand seems to have no problem expressing inner turmoil in a way that makes you believe in its beauty again. Good for when you just want to unwind and listen to heartfelt music.
And finally there’s Pony Girl, an Ottawa-based band that is garnering more and more critical and public attention. The group has a penchant for marrying their otherworldly sound with harder edges that you can feel in their music. Get ready to witness the seamless integration of classical instruments like the clarinet, as it carves out its place in the world of indie music with help from this band.
Shows start at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 for each night in advance, $12 at the door, or $15 for a weekend wristband available exclusively online. There is a bus leaving from the Museum of Nature both nights at 7:30 p.m. Round trip is $10.