This Week in Sound: Stars, Drake, The Deep Dark Woods, Divine Fits and more

Stars drop a new — and free — tour EP

Every Monday, we round up the most exciting music news happening in Toronto. In this edition: Stars launch a free tour EP, Drake wins big at the Grammys, Divine Fits tackle Springsteen and more.

After heading down under to Australia to kick off their international tour this weekend, Toronto indie pop icons Stars are offering fans a tour EP. You Guys Are Awesome is a five-song record featuring tracks and killer covers from some of their on-the-road mates, including Milo Greene, Said the Whale and Yukon Blonde. Stars’ current international tour for their latest full-length, The North, stops in Toronto in March. The new tour EP is free to download, but you can leave a tip if you like.

Last night’s Grammy Awards would have you believe that The Black Keys are the only rock band worth mentioning these days, and that Mumford and Sons are leading this twangy antebellum-esque comeback. All sarcasm aside, props are owed to Toronto’s own Drake, who took home the Best Rap Album award for Take Care.

Sometimes when musicians try their hand at the acting game, it just doesn’t go over well (right, Bieber?). But we’re pretty excited to see The Deep Dark Woods’ cameo in the romantic flick Safe Haven. The OST dropped Feb. 5, and the movie features The DDWs performing a brand new track, “My Baby’s Got To Pay The Rent ” written specifically for the movie. Based on a Nicholas Sparks novel, and set for a Valentine’s Day release, Safe Haven will probably ooze schmaltz. But we think your date is a keeper if they can spot The DDWs.

Toronto isn’t the only city embroiled in a casino debate. Hamilton is also contemplating taking a gamble on a proposed casino-concert venue, much to the dismay of local musicians. Members of Alexisonfire, Caribou, Junior Boys, Bruce Peninsula, Young Rival, Young Empires and others are protesting a casino proposal for downtown Hamilton, which could include a concert venue. In a signed letter of protest, the musicians said they do not support an entertainment complex that would be partially run by an American-owned corporation because it could undermine the local independent music scene.

If you need a cure for wet socks on this sopping Monday morning, check out this Divine Fits cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “Hungry Heart.”

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