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Four must-see shows at Montreal's Osheaga music and arts festival

When Frank Ocean pulled out of his summer festival shows because of a throat injury this week, Drake cancelled the first day of his double-day hometown OVO Fest, where the R&B crooner was to be the featured attraction on Sunday. Ocean will also miss Montreal’s Osheaga festival, but the megahappening, running Aug. 2 to 4, is better equipped to withstand a headliner’s no-show

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Jake Bugg (Aug. 2, 5:25 to 6:10 p.m.): The English singer-songwriter respects Dylan and Donovan, and has a showboater’s swagger about him. His song Lightning Bolt was one of 10 on the mixed tape British Prime Minister David Cameron handed out to fellow leaders at the recent G8 summit. Other artists in the mix included Ben Howard, Lianne La Havas and Alt-J, who all appear at this year’s Osheaga.

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Explosions in the Sky (Aug. 3, 8 to 9 p.m.): The 2003 album from the post-rock Texans was called The Earth Is Not a Cold Dead Place, and for the past decade they’ve done their part to confirm the belief. The latest work from the crescendo seekers is Explosions in the Sky and David Wingo, the atmospheric soundtrack to the meditative Paul Rudd-Emile Hirsch movie Prince Avalanche.

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Beck (Aug. 3, 9:05 to 10:45 p.m.): The curious Mr. Hansen marches to his own drum machine, in recent years producing albums by Thurston Moore and Stephen Malkmus, collaborating with Seu Jorge and Charlotte Gainsbourg, co-ordinating guest-star covers albums, contributing songs to soundtracks and reworking Philip Glass. At Osheaga, expect songs from Song Reader, his old-fashioned adventure in sheet music.

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Kendrick Lamar (Aug. 4, 7 to 8 p.m.): After his own show at Toronto’s Sound Academy on Friday, the hip-hop game-changer travels in style down the Macdonald-Cartier Freeway. Influenced by DMX, Dr. Dre and Lil Wayne, the kid from Compton, Calif., is a cool-headed rapper who documents the scene with a discernment beyond his 26 years.

NATHAN DENETTE/THE CANADIAN PRESS

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