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Michou maker 

Windsor quartet bring raw power to Halifax

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Michou is heading out on tour with USS with a brand-new EP, Celebrate Love, and vocalist Mike Hargreaves says he's ready to show Canada why---and how---the band kicks ass.

The poppy, folky quartet from Windsor, Ontario exploded on the national music scene after winning Artist of the Year at the XM Radio Verge Awards this year over higher-profile bands like Tegan and Sara and Arcade Fire. 

"It feels pretty surreal," says Hargreaves. "I feel like in a lot of ways, what we were to the Verge Awards is what Arcade Fire was to the Grammys. Sort of 'Who is this band?'" 

Hargreaves believes the success of his band, which returns to Halifax this weekend with a show at the Seahorse, sparks from its sound---an overlay of gritty pop-folk and charismatic melodies. It's a bit of a contrast in comparison to the rest of the music market.

"I like to just get the song down," he says. "I feel like if you overwork it, it becomes a little fabricated and you lose sight of what you thought was really great about the song to begin with." "Sometimes that means it's not gonna be as polished. Sometimes listeners don't really care---they want something raw."

During this year's Juno Awards, Hargreaves took to Twitter to share his opinion about Canadian artists, writing "#Junos were fantastic! Overall, Canadians seem too tense! RELAX! It's music."

Hargreaves thinks Canadian artists often try to make everything too perfect, unlike Michou's laidback work ethic.

"A lot of Canadians seem afraid to screw up or say something wrong and ... that's just the way I felt about the night. Just be yourself. If people don't get it, then they don't get it. But if they do get it, and they love you for it, that's what makes legends," he says.

Michou will be hard at work on a new EP over the summer. The guys aren't giving up on the idea of making a full-length, but they're trying to keep up the momentum and uncomplicated output that has taken them this far.

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