Wednesday, December 22, 2004

I'm now in Vancouver, hanging out with some friends before I head up to Northern BC, where I'll hopefully find some stocked liquor cabinets... I saw Lakeboat and Hank & Lily on Friday in Victoria - Lakeboat's made large strides in my absence, recruiting Thomas and Mattie from Run Chico Run as their new rhythm section, and Jesse Scott no longer has traded in his guitar for a tambourine and some Bob Pollard-esque moves.

Daddy's Hands didn't end up playing on Friday, which was indeed a shame, but I got to hear the new Black Mountain record, which is impressive beyond the words I'm able to muster to describe it. Pre-order it, if you can, or snatch up a couple of copies when it comes out.

Thursday, December 16, 2004


Whether or not Daddy's Hands' Dave Wanger was as big of an influence on the song-writing of Atlas Strategic (and by implication, Wolf Parade?) and Frog Eyes as so many hecklers would have led anyone to believe in Victoria a couple of years back is certainly up for discussion. (In drunken moments, I've heard it said that he was a gigantic Godhead figure in that small burg below the 49th parallel on Vancouver Island, but I can't recall if it was me saying that or someone else...) It is not up for discussion, however, that throughout his various musical outlets he's never been able to muster up any stability that could have led to him receiving some very deserved attention... (Though Metal Maniacs Magazine did favourly review the demo tape of his high school metal band, Moral Decay) From Breakwater to M Blanket (a group who's members included Frankie Sparo) to Ache Hour Credo to Daddy's Hands and now Charter Cruise, Wanger has charted a rather wobbly path, through the death of Daddy's Hands' member Emily, Kevin Shields-like control issues and constantly reconsidering moving back to his hometown of Victoria from Montreal...

"just another schoolyard bully ..he's apparently doing some sort of lounge act ..i hope he dies miserable and alone fuck charity he deserves whatever he gets ..shit now i feel guilty ..i don't hate you dave i hope you are doing fine..(i just don't know whether to hate or love ..)

Yikes, Google speaks! Anyway...

The more readily available Tutankhamun was originally released on the Que Sara label, and licensed under the Cargo imprint, Headhunter, and some might be aware of the track on the Slow To Burn compilation Group Therapy Explosion, but there are other releases floating about, most notably Marc (one-time member of Daddy's Hands) from The Mintaka Conspiracy label's releases of "Welcome Kings" (100 copies), and "Ghost In The Bong", which came out in September 2002. Other gentleman-archivists include Jeremy Robinson, proprietor of Ditch Records in Victoria, who had run off a couple of copies of a double-CD set of every song he could get his hands on, including the two early demos, and the Parka 3's David Barclay.*

Daddy's Hands - Summertime.mp3
Daddy's Hands - That's Rich.mp3
Daddy's Hands - There Won't Be A Next Time.mp3

Dave Wanger is back on his feet again and performing - he played last June while visiting in Victoria, substituting for Glass Candy & The Shattered Theatre, and apparently under the influence of a barbituate cocktail, as well as under the moniker Charter Cruise with The Ten Commandments at the Barfly a couple of months back. And now he's living in Victoria, performed last week in Vancouver, and will be playing (if he damn well feels like it, I've been told) tomorrow evening in Victoria at the 50-50 Collective along with Lakeboat and Hank & Lily. Owing to a fortuitous turn of events, I'll be able to catch that show, as I'm flying out from here in a couple of hours on a West Coast holiday tour.

* Another interesting link in this weird six-degrees-of-seperation is professional silent lurker Tam, who may or may not be releasing an album with Thurston Moore's Ecstatic Peace label, but certainly has freaked out many a mop-haired rocker in her time.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Back in Montreal after a stint on the East Coast where they played with Les Unicorns Francais, and sleeping in my living room, Vancouver's post-hardcore trio the Witness Protection Program are headlining a bill at the Electric Tractor tonight, along with Les Yeah Yeah Yeahs Francais and intheBROKENSOUND.

The Electric Tractor - 6674 de l'Esplanade, doors @ 8pm, $5

Monday, December 13, 2004

Are you worried about the future of the written word?

William STYRON:Not really. I get moments of alarm. Not long ago I received in the mail a doctoral thesis entitled: “Sophie’s Choice: A Jungian Perspective,” which I sat down to read. It was quite a long document. In the first paragraph it said, “In this thesis my point of reference throughout will be the Alan J. Pakula movie of Sophie’s Choice.” There was a footnote, which I swear to you said, “Where the movie is obscure I will refer to William Styron’s novel for clarification.” This idiocy laid a pall over my life for a dark brief time because it brought back all these bugaboos we have about the written word.

The NY Times Book section had an article in it about the Paris Review's online catalogue of author interviews, The DNA of Literature project, which they're just starting to put up in pdf format, and I've been skimming through it, catching things of interest here and there... It's worth spending a couple of hours here or there. The DNA Of Literature

“During signing sessions my queue is always full of, you know, wild-eyed sleazebags and people who stare at me very intensely, as if I have some particular message for them.” - Martin Amis

I've long considered (well, ever since that Mean magazine cover had him portrayed as Jesus in 97 or 98) Vincent Gallo to be pretty similar to Dennis Miller, the main difference being that Gallo's got that Manson-like look which gives every asshole utterance of his some sort of weight (Devandra Obi Banhart, too, right?) and that whereas Dennis Miller is an unfunny comedian, Vincent Gallo is an unfunny uhh conceptual artist or filmmaker or guy who used to be in Konk or something. Nonetheless, I'll take the opportunity to see his cock without having to watch that Brown Bunny movie, and Gawker has just provided me with that opportunity... Gallo's Cock and Sevigny's Mouth.

Saturday, December 11, 2004

The Warrior Magazine launch party on Thursday devolved into a rollicking dustup, a worthy homage to the violence that marred the Vibe Awards... Arlen of Wolf Parade found himself straddled by a Kops Krew representative, and Warrior publisher Tony Trew's head met the business side of a flying beer bottle. Speculatory gossip and comparative analysis can be found here... Beaver's cramped quarters performance was enjoyable, his voice reminding me a bit of the Mountain Goats, and he mentioned that next year he'd be putting together a band to flush out the songs, which will add quite a bit...

I dare you all to spend some time snooping about this directory... The jpg titled "plunderbunnies" is a special favourite, but I bet there are more hidden delights awaiting discovery. I just don't have the stomach for it right now...

Mos Def - Wylin Out.mp3
Joy Division - Disorder.mp3

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Psych Warriors or Cowboys From Hell?

Warrior Magazine launches its second issues tonight in Montreal, proving that not every new magazine is an indulgent and masturbatory waste of time, published by recent English graduates and lacking rudimentary copy editing (blogs do it so much better, anyway)... Of course, I'm DJing this, so I would only have congratulatory things to say, wouldn't I?

1817 Ste.Catherine O Thursday, December 9... Doors @ 9, pay-what-you-can... Avec Myyellowfall, and DJs DAN SELIGMAN and Jay Watts III. Spencer from Wolf Parade may be playing as well, you'll have to see.

If you'd prefer to mourn the tragic, tragic loss of one of heavy metal's best goatee-farmers Dimebag Darryl, Montreal's biggest Pantera fans will be performing dirge-like requiems in his memory tonight. Steve Aoki's desert-island group Pony Up and the Kickers at The Green Room, 9pm. "RE! SPECT!"

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

I attended the Malajube show last night at Petit Campus... Despite a late start, everything finished up pretty much on time (a 10:30 curfew in place so the place could fill up for the Campus' white-tank-top bump'n'grind Tuesday night event), with Malajube returning for a two-song encore. I'd never seen the band before, and despite the obvious Unicorns comparisons (specifically with regards to certain syncopated drum beats and vocal melodies, and stop-start dynamics, though I assume that's a result of a shared post-hardcore musical past), it was an entertaining and heavily Francophonic show. The openers were forgettable, not the next Jean LeLoupe as my companion, Danager commented.

Also in attendance at the show was a be-spectacled, mop-topped ruffian, representing NYC's cut'n'paste glitch-pop shoppers Mixel Pixel, who played this year's PopMontreal festival. I'm ashamed to say I'd heard of the group, but never listened to them before, and when you're out in public, you can't googlesearch, ya know?

Mixel Pixel - Pink Shirts.mp3

A small, racist snippet: "Hungary? Do you know what immigrants' homes smell like? Now imagine a whole nation of immigrants. That's what Hungary smells like."


The Get Hustle are a cabaret-tinged vision-force of bleak, liqueur-soaked voodoo and hallucinations emenating from seances with long-dead Parisians in 1920s brothels. Comprised of singer Valentine, drummer Ron Avila (formerly of San Diego's Antioch Arrow and Heroin), and Mac Mann (also of Antioch Arrow), the trio has chartered a similarly murky musical course through the arcane and profane as fellow Portland dwellers Pleasure Forever, releasing two 7"s (I've Got A Gun & I'm Excited and most recently Who Do You Love/Mad Power, featuring a lurching cover of the Bo Diddley original) the Now We're All Gone (GSL) and Dream Eagle (31G) EPs and (the now out-of-print) Earth Oyssey LP (5RC/KRS). They'll be featured on an upcoming tribute album to the Birthday Party as well.

The Get Hustle - Pharoah's Horses.mp3
Antioch Arrow - Conspiring the Go-Go.mp3

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Malajube CD Release

Montreal's second most popular "post-hardcore kids playing pop" group Malajube celebrate the release of their debut album, "Compte Complet" tonight at Petit Campus. The album's on Dare To Care Records and Tracy Maurice, who's probably familiar to most as the designer of Arcade Fire (the second coming of the Osmonds) and Wolf Parade album artwork, is responsible for the sleeve design. Mp3 samples below...

Petit Campus, 57 Prince-Arthur East, Doors @ 9pm
with Avec Pas D'Casse opening

La Maladie.mp3
Le Robot Sexy.mp3

Monday, December 06, 2004

This article on Pabst Blue Ribbon is over a year old, and all the kids in Montreal are drinking Labatt 50 now anyways (as a Gazette article pointed out a couple of months ago, with commentary on the phenomenon by local pin-maker and , Mike Long) but it's interesting nonetheless, in that slightly hung over, lying in bed reading random websites on your girlfriend's laptop kinda way... (I'm finding that Reverend Moon and his crowning as the King of Peace are piquing my interest right now as well.)

The single key text in Neal Stewart's codification of the meaning of P.B.R. is the book No Logo, by the journalist Naomi Klein. Published in 2000, No Logo is about the incursion of brands and marketing into every sphere of public life, the bullying and rapacious mind-set that this trend represents and evidence of a grass-roots backlash against it, especially among young people. Klein's view is that this would feed a new wave of activists who targeted corporations. Stewart's view is that the book contains ''many good marketing ideas.'' He says it ''really articulated the feelings, the coming feelings, of the consumer out there: eventually people are gonna get sick of all this stuff'' — all this marketing — ''and say enough is enough.''

Sunday, December 05, 2004

Western Alienation.

Chris Frey, guitarist and vocalist from Radio Berlin and photographer of note, has a new band called Book of Lists, indulging himself in a passion for the Postcard Records discography, Felt, Josef K and an e-bow possibly? I hear some Ride in there. It's beyond mere mimicry, though, as any fan of Radio Berlin could tell you. (A group that has, more than any other, charted and transcended any new-wave revivals over the past six years or so more than any other, and with less esteem than they deserve.) The group is going into Vancouver's The Hive to record a couple of songs later this month, possibly for a release on Global Symphonic, a label which has done much over the number of years to define the musical landscape of British Columbia, but has yet to (to my knowledge) receive the coverage they deserve from Exclaim!. Harumph.

Book of Lists will be playing the Pink Mountaintops home-coming show on Wednesday, December 8 in Vancouver BC at Richards on Richards. Okanagan-born and Vancouver-ripened psych-group Ladyhawk are opening, as well.

Also on the West Coast, Ashley Webber (bassist) has left The Organ and Droom have just released their new album, Ten Songs.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

HHH -Tex + Jazz Dancer!

With the departure of guitarist Dante Decarro for a small cabin further up Vancouver Island, Hot Hot Heat fans were both melancholic and confused. Internet messageboards filled up quickly with speculation as to who would replace the young Ian Svenonius look-a-like lovingly referred to as "Tex" by female friends. Speculation gesticulated wildly (metaphorically-speaking), like a down-on-her-luck stripper entering a K Hole... Would it be another young Victorian, plucked from the bush-leagues, or a former Instill bandmember? Perhaps a remnant of a Maoist? Or maybe a CanCon also-ran, like a member of better-left-forgotten Econoline Crush. Would anyone give Dan And of Lakeboat a chance, or had his admiration of the Byrds and CCR excluded him from consideration? Luke Paquin, formerly of a group that I've never heard of (and I bet you haven't either, extensive google-searching turns up only 3 performances!) called The Stradlers has been named as the El Pompadour's replacement.

Information is scant, however; we know that at 15, Luke was living in Grand Rapids, Michigan and was a treasured member of the Cara Feile Irish Dancers troupe. His biography, loaded with subtext... "Luke has been dancing since the 2nd grade taking classes like clogging, tap, Irish dancing, ballet, jazz, and modern. He is also on the swim team."

The album, with Dante noodling in-tact, is titled "Elevator" and will be released in April, with the first single being "You Owe Me an IOU". I expect there to be an announcement shortly to the effect that HHH's vegetarian meat-alternative food product "Not Not Meat" will soon be available on the market. (Oooh, what a pun.)

Running Out of Time
Island of the Honest Man
Dirty Mouth
You Owe Me an IOU
No Jokes - Fact
Goodnight, Goodnight
Middle of Nowhere
Pickin' It Up
Ladies and Gentlemen
Shame on You
Soldier in a Box
Jingle Jangle

The author of the 20 Jazz Funk Greats blog (which I highly recommend - it makes me mourn the lack of any intelligently written and somewhat witty pop/rock criticism on this side of the pond) has a pertinent message. In this case, the missive is directed at England's sizable population of art-school students, but it's applicable to Montreal's population, too. "[...]kids - just stop hanging round has been gay house djs with more coke than taste."

Over ten years ago, Ian Svenonius, fronting the Nation of Ulysses (who still have some serious outstanding intellectual copyright issues to take up with those Swedish chameleons, the International Noise Conspiracy*) warned the kids not to rat out their friends...

Anyway, it's term paper time, so I'm busy for the next little while and won't be able to plop up as many mp3s as I'd like, but upon my return to more regular blogging, I should be posting mp3s accompanied with more substantial chunks of writing. Oh joy. In the meantime, go ferret out the new LCD Soundsystem record.

* And what exactly is it about the world of Swedish pop and rock music (or perhaps just the stuff we get over here) that churns out these "version of" bands... Roxette was the Swedish Eurythmics, down to the trenchcoat their guitarist wore (Dave Stewart's, thanks) and the blonde buzzcut that belonged to Annie Lenox. The Sounds are only Blondie in image, their songwriting not quite up to snuff. The International Noise Conspiracy, fronted by ex-Refused vocalist Dennis Lyxxen, owe a massive debt to Ian Svenonius' The MakeUp, which only makes that little Nation of Ulysses as the template for Refused even more fucked up. Ace of Base was a Swedish version of a Swedish band, Abba, for Christ's sake! And the Cardigans' (who could pull of the Blondie schtick far slicker than The Sounds) latest album sounds like Fleetwood Mac!

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Technophilic Norwegian duo Datarock (who's newest song titled, simply and effectively "newest song", and has some fairly obvious lyrical swipes from Japan new-wave group The Plastics) perform tonight at the suburban church-like Main Hall (5390 St. Laurent) along with lupid also-rans, We Are Wolves and Statuepark. $8.

Monday, November 29, 2004


San Francisco's Tussle is a group who's name will be on your lips pretty soon for one of two reasons (if they're not already)... The first and least relevant being that bassist Andy is currently touring as a member of hug-happy Devandra Banhart's band, and the second being that their debut album is full of dubbed out polyrhythmic tracks, bringing to mind certain Killing Joke tracks, Cabaret Voltaire's hypnotic Breathe Deep (from 2x45, one of my favourite albums), Liquid-Liquid and more recent updates on such sounds, like the DFA-produced Pixeltan track Get Up/Say What. In other word, more of the same of what I've been listening to for the past three years or so.

TroublemanUnlimited jumped on the group, and has released the Don't Stop EP, Eye Contact 12", the Here It Comes 12" (with locked-groove remixes on the B-side) and most recently, the Kling Klang LP.

Tussle - Here It Comes.mp3
Tussle - Untitled and Unreleased Recording.mp3

Sunday, November 28, 2004

100-sided Die & Die Tödliche Doris

Last night's event, the first ever at the 100-Sided Die, was pretty fun all in all, though still suffering from a hangover I wasn't able to muster up enough energy to stick around for the post-performance iTuned dance party. Another time, perhaps. Wolf Parade was the highlight of the night, of course, but a rejuvenated AIDSWolf pulled off an impressive performance, specifically in comparison to their splinter group, Cousins of Reggae, who performed prior to them. Uninspired and banal, self-indulgent noise that brings to mind just what you think when I type that. Of course, a noise band is possibly the easiest target for off-handed criticism (the exact sort of criticism I specialize in, in fact). Though the genre's barnhouse is packed to the rafters with black-clad misanthropes, largely indifferent (perhaps hostile) to the opinions of anyone other than their own cardre of friends, they're still desperately seeking post-humous recognition for their groundbreaking grade 11 band's debut, hopefully in the form of a re-issue with liner notes by Thurston Moore or Byron Coley.

I snapped some photographs of Wolf Parade, which I'll post when I get around to developing the roll. They played one request, the NewMusicCanada favourite Dinner Bells and a couple of new songs, which were more than likely debuted on their West Coast dates earlier this month.

The Tödliche Doris, early to mid-80s group of German avant-garde noise no-wavists... Grew out from the Throbbing Gristle/ENB mold into something uniquely their own, reaching a pinnacle with the release of a 1986 LP "Seches" (Six) meant to be played along with the 1984 LP "Unsichtbare" (Our Debut), which was thematically about an ambitious pop/new-wave group's Faustian bargain. Of mention before that was the 1983 "Chöre & Soli" release - a package of 8 toy records (sparse, elliptical recordings of children's songs) along with a battery-powered "miniphone" device that played the records (photographed above). Jesus...

Die Tödliche Doris - Der Tod ist ein Skandal.mp3 from their 1981 cassette "Das typische Ding."

Stümmel mir from the untitled LP, released in 1982.

Not True from the 1986 "Seches" LP.

Friday, November 26, 2004


Last night I dreamt that I was on an island in California with my friend Chris, eating a pickles and fish from a jar, and having a conversation with Frank Zappa, who told us that we didn't have to worry about snakes when we were walking around in the tall glass with barefeet because since the Kennedy's came out to California, all of the snakes had been removed. Was that some sort of subtle dream-time stab at Irish Catholicism? Below's a well-loved track...

The Stone Roses - I Wanna Be Adored.mp3

Tomorrow (Saturday) night will mark the return of Wolf Parade to Montreal and the opening of a new collectively run art-space and venue, in the same building as the Gray Room, dubbed the 100-Sided Die. Spearheaded by Chloe and Yannick of Seripop, and Matt Moroz and Morag (who's last name has escaped me, sorry), with (I'm sure) plenty of help from other like-minded folk. Other bands are AIDS Wolf, the digeridoo combo DIDGERIDOOM and Cousins of Reggae. Doors at 10pm, $5 to get in. Come on time, lest ye be left behind.

Room 1202 - 5334 de Gaspe

Also this weekend, Expozine and the SAT's annual record-swap on Sunday.

Thursday, November 25, 2004

Guilty, Guilty Pleasures

I have to admit something that's been burdening my soul as of late - I've only been candid about it with my girlfriend, and she's mocked me for it (Deriding it as "such a European pop song.") After at first dismissing them, I've become quite enamored with France's Phoenix. I fell in love with the "Holdin On Together" track off of their most recent album, Alphabetical. Very slick R&B production, polished pop motifs, percussive sandpaper. I didn't give them much of a listen, but I remember Steve Bays being a huge admirer of The Push Kings, and though I loathed it at the time, I think it sounded a bit like this. Maybe I should give them another try, too.

Holding On Together.ram

Roman Coppola (son of Francis, director of the stylistically confusing but somewhat entertaining "CQ") directed a video for "Everything Is Everything," linked here in Real Audio Format.

They'll be heading to our Francophobic trading partners to the south, the United States at the end of this month, with (unfortunately) no scheduled dates in Canada. They've been adding new dates quite frequently, though, so ashamed Montrealers may be offered the opportunity to indulge themselves.

Sorry for the lack of mp3s, I'll try to put one up in the next couple of days...

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

11 Years Later...

I'm almost loathe to give this track away, just because I harbour such a deep and abiding love for it, but I'm sure plenty of you have already heard it, and Ice T put it on that absurd compilation of West Coast tracks he released a couple of years back (followed nicely by a fifteen minute conversation with a British faux-interviewer in which he talks about foreign policy ("eat a bowl of dicks") and the true lyrical depths and insight in his killer track Let's Get Buck Naked And Fuck), so it's pretty much fair game now.

Souls of Mischief - 93 Til Infinity

It's obviously the ultimate summer track, far beyond DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince's Summertime... Laid-back, backpacker stuff, members of the Bay Area's Heiroglyphics crew, and easily the best stuff that crew's put out.

Monday, November 22, 2004

The Spanish Inquisition: Take 2.

L-R: Nicholas Diamonds and Jesse F. Keeler, during a rare tender moment.

PopMontreal fuhrer and best brother ever Dan Seligman, usually seen about town in shorts, will be DJing against The Unicorns' Nicholas Diamonds, former film-school student and evangalical Christian. Described as "the ultimate battle. Ska vs. Funk. Sam Roberts vs. Tragically Hip. Arcade Fire vs Modest Mouse. Hair vs. Cut. Randy Macho Man Savage vs. Ted Dibiase. The Stills vs. The Undercovers. Statue Park vs. Echo Kitty, Korova vs. GreenRoom. DKD vs. Constellation, Dizzee Rascal vs. Old Dirty Bastard," the promo fails to make mention of the other, more salacious dichotomy that exists in this Steel Wheel matchup, that is, Lapsed Christian vs. Lapsed Jew!

Tuesday, November 23rd @ Korova (3908 St. Laurent)

Related mp3s!

The Unicorns - Les Os.mp3
The Stars - Ageless Beauty.mp3
Statue Park - Sex Batteries.mp3
Echo Kitty - Goelands.mp3

Sunday, November 21, 2004


If memory serves me correct, I believe that Future Proof off of Massive Attack's 100th Window samples the below Durutti Column song, Smile In The Crowd." I only managed to hear the album once, while incredibly stoned in the back of an acquaintance's sports-car, riding to Nanaimo. My friend Bill Stuart (he of Victoria's Monday Magazine) had driven me and another fellow up, but his car broke down prior to the end of the Malahat, and after finding our way to a bizarre country-inn, the other fellow arranged for myself and him to get a ride from his brother to Nanaimo. After foolishly agreeing to have some of the marijuana the two were smoking, I sat paralyzed in the back of the car, feeling a little too freaked out by the Massive Attack album and the speed of the car. I couldn't recall how to get to Ken's place, so I had them drop me off in a mall parking lot close to his house. It took me an hour to cross the parking lot (which wasn't that big), and I only credit my making it at all to there being a Dairy Queen on the other side. I don't really smoke marijuana. Obviously...

Durutti Column - Smile In The Crowd.mp3

...And on the nostalgic tip, here's a Ride track. I came to Ride a little late, and in a little untraditionally - while living in Victoria, I picked up a copy of Carnival of Light, that most critically reviled of their albums, (split in half between the two feuding songwriters) at Ditch Records and immediately became fixated on it. At this point I've subjected too many of my friends (and neighbouring strangers) to an extended monologue on the beauty and sublime nature of this album, so I won't repeat myself, but if you're a Ride fan and have out-of-hand dismissed the album, I urge you to re-examine it.

Ride - Going Blank Again.mp3
Ride - Vapour Trail.mp3

I happened upon some Yoko Ono mp3s on Rhetoricpig... Stuff from 1983, I can't link to the post directly, so I'll link to the mp3s below, but you should really go check out the website, too.

It's Alright.mp3
Wake Up.mp3
Let The Tears Dry.mp3
Dream Love.mp3
I See Rainbows.mp3

I didn't manage to get to the St. Henri vernissage last night for Matt & Jim's household creation (with the Sons of Warsaw: Bartek and Krzysztof DJing), but it's around for quite some time yet. There's a story in the most recent Mirror's Arts section.

Friday, November 19, 2004

O'oh Yoko!

Below's an amazing Yoko Ono track, a rarity available in a couple of places - in the recently released box-set and the 1992 "Walking On Thin Ice" collection. Nice evening outside - go and enjoy the relatively balmy weather.

Yoko Ono - O'oh.mp3

Novelty version of Lou Reed's Walk On The Wild Side.mp3

I'll be DJing tonight @ The W Hotel's Wunderbar (901 Square Victoria), come on by...

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

W Hotel whatnot.

Last night was the grand opening of the W Hotel in Old Montreal. Fittingly housed in the old Bank of Canada building, where they incinerated the money. 1000 people plus tossing back far too many cocktails and glasses of champagne at the open bars, oysters and pastries upstairs. One gentleman, positioned by the Oyster bar, told me in heavily accented French, that this was "the place to be in Montreal," and I nodded while my companion Derek berated him with anecdotes about the difficulty of novel writing. (Derek later passed out on the couch in the Wunderbar and was helpfully escorted outside, where he tried to force his way into a Hummer).

And tonight I'll be DJing there - from around 10:30 till 3:30 or so, dropping the post-punk/new-wave/hip-hop/soul/psych/garage pastiche mix you've heard every night out for the past two years or so. 901 Square Victoria.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004


It's a bit late, but if I'm reading this correctly, a writer at tinymixtapes named Mr. Emo referred to evolution as "so-called science" in a blurb about Greg Gaffin's PhD dissertation. Jesus Christ, they really are in trouble down in the United States! With all this emphasis on Creationism, I'm counting the months until Alchemy is the next belief based on "established faiths" to be taught in American high schools.

Sunday, November 14, 2004

The Lil' People Speak!

If anyone denies the true value of the internet as a medium for the open and valuable discussion of the political matters of the day, they probably haven't been exposed to the two hot-spots of interaction and strong-headed discourse on the internet right now... and (I assume there's a missing apostrophe there).

A typically opinionated American (in national dress) throws his two-cents into the heated "E-Debate" on post-electoral apologies.

"What for the documentary film?" / "What for the Youth?" / "What for the Toronto Media Professional?"

The 7th annual Recontres internationales du documentaire de Montreal is still on until Sunday, November 21st... With the exception of a documentary on tree-planters, tomorrow looks like as promising a day as any other to check the offerings out. More info on the page, of course.

Until September of 2005, the McCord Museum of Canadian History will be exhibiting Growing Up In Montreal, exploring "the daily lives of young urban-dwellers in the last century", and more than likely not mentioning the formation of Vice Magazine. A fine companion for that is the NFB film, Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr. Leonard Cohen, now available on DVD. Cohen walks and stalks the streets of his native Montreal in the early 1960s, speaking in a clipped and delicate manner, discussing his love of latenight dining at Ben's Montreal Deli.

A Candid Photograph of Members of Canada's Media Cabal

Interns, students, job-hunters and cranky bloggers have only two days left to plan their infiltration of the MediaBistro's Drinks for Toronto Media Professionals shindy. Smoking pot in the bathroom with Heather Mallick, a Merlot-soaked fracas with Leah McLaren, round-table discussion on Barbara Amiel's oral sex techniques, Evan Solomon and jello shooters? Hit the page up and falsify references for a splendid Tuesday evening.

Vancouver artist Mark DeLong now has a website!

The Prids

Portland, Oregon's The Prids are a group of who've been busy in that corner of North America for a number of years penning world-shaking, sweeping songs with equal parts post-punk, new-wave and shoegazing allusions. The easiest and more obvious points of reference are Wire, My Bloody Valentine and Echo & The Bunnymen (ubiquitiously), but there's something a little more earnest and valuable than PoMo pastiche going on here, evident in a couple of the songs that I'll post below.

When I lived in Victoria, I heard of the Prids thanks to Jack Duckworth - I was playing in a band called Ghosts at the time and he invited us over to play with The Prids and his group, A Luna Red at the Pic Pub in Vancouver. The Prids had brought along an affable Chicagoan with a apple green Dodge Charger who spoke knowledgeably of the history of the American twenty-five cent piece, and they played a sparkling and shimmering set, complete with epileptic-fit inducing light-show. The next time I saw them, my friend Dan and I put a show on for them in Victoria, and their light-show and amplifiers blew the fuses at Logan's, cutting their set short.

The Prids - Contact.mp3 from the Love Zero EP.
The Prids - Love Zero.mp3 from the Love Zero EP.

West Coast residents can catch The Prids in Seattle on November 28th, while most East Coasters will have to wait until they fill out the dates around their appearance at the Magnum PR showcase in New York on the 16th of December.

Saturday, November 13, 2004

Olde No Longer.

The Syd Barrett of the rhymes n' beats set, Old Dirty Bastard has passed away just days before his 36th birthday. No good.

Thursday, November 11, 2004


I skimmed over an Edward Said essay last night in an Adorno Reader book I picked up - rambles on a bit about Adorno speaking of the lateness (and proximity to death) of Beethoven's final works being supremely artistic, assaults on bourgeoisie society - not so much shattered, splintered and unfinished, but rather exploded pieces that pointed to the way towards Schoenberg's work... Made sense. Anyway, voices and pianos and strings below.

From Ludwig Von Beethoven's Opus 93,
Symphony 8 in F Major, Allegretto Scherzando.mp3 Jaunty!
From Sergei Rachmaninov's Opus 37, Blazhen muzh (Blessed Is Man).mp3
From Sergei Rachmaninov's Opus 3/2, The Bells of Moscow - Prelude in C sharp Minor.mp3 The ever-popular piano piece


Billie Holiday - Gloomy Sunday
The Kinks - Afternoon Tea.mp3
Adriano Celentano - 24000 Baci.mp3


Lagoons, swaddled babe of proud father David Lindquist (and step-papa Etienne Alexander), redefines the omnipresent lo-fi bedroom aesthetic (brings it outdoors, lets it breathe, run around, get some sunshine), smothers it in a despondent and morose new-wave fog (in the vein of The Cure's "Disintegration") and then revives it with airy synthesizers and studio trickery culled from the back catalogue of Lee Perry. Add to that some of the psych-pop allusions of the Bevis Frond, some cabaret leanings, and the listener finds her or himself knee-deep in some moody, evocative swamp. Barely out of the starting gates (Lagoons has been around only since this summer), if the duo manages to board the Tsawwassen-Swartz Bay ferry route every now and then to prostelyze and convert, there should be little lacking for the group in the way of appreciative fans or fawning critics. One imagines a natural kinship with Vancouver's My Project: Blue, who also have V. Island origins.

The group's next performance is later this month (November 27th) in Victoria, BC at the Gary Oak Room, with The Redscare and Pushing Up Daisies.

Lagoons - Our Love Is True.mp3
Lagoons - Bathroom Wall.mp3

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

The Scowl.

Tobias Carroll edits The Scowl blog and also writes and reviews for publications like Earlash, The Copper Press and Rocket Fuel. A while back he gave this blog a mention, and I'd like to do the same, though admittedly I'm a bit late in reciprocating...

From his blog, you'll be able to get access to pieces he's done on Radio Berlin, Lion Fever, Pleasure Forever, Frog Eyes and the lumbering psych-rock giants of the West Coast Black Mountain, amongst others... As well, plenty of blog-like stuff.

Youth Against Fascism vs. Youth For Fascism.

I caught Hot Snakes last night at the Sala Rossa - a set of just over 20 songs from all 3 albums, including a 4 song encore, delivered in a quick and clipped manner without any unnecessary stage banter or theatrics. Rick Froeberg looked a bit like an angry Stephen Wright and the place was packed, testament to the cross-genre appeal of the group, which attracted both the Franco-garage and post-hardcore crowds, but not so many females, which probably goes to prove my earlier assertion about the Hot Snakes/Drive Like Jehu pairing being to this generation what Shellac/Big Black was to the one previous.

Your favourite Bote-Noire clerk tells me that Dan Bejar (ya know, Destroyer!) is in town, possibly renting movies with his mother. Below are some random mp3s, pretty standard stuff. Russians love Nick Cave.

Sonic Youth - Victoria.mp3 (A Kinks cover, from 1988 Peel Sessions)
Echo & The Bunnymen - Bring On The Dancing Horses.mp3
Nick Cave - Red Right Hand.mp3
Bauhaus - Bela Lugosi's Dead.mp3
Christian Death - Romeo's Void.mp3

Queer Crypto-Fascist Corner!

Death In June - What Ends.mp3
Death In June - All Pigs Must Die
Boyd Rice & Friends - People.mp3
Current 93 - Holy Holy Holy.mp3
The Legendary Pink Dots - Neon Mariners.mp3

First there was Crisis, the lefty political punk band. Shortly thereafter, Death In June formed, with Douglas Pearce, Tony Wakeford and Patrick Leagas. They released The Guilty Have No Pride and Burial before Wakeford left for his rather erratic and more-miss-than-hit Sol Invictus. After Nada, Leagas left as well, joining 6th Comm... After that, Pearce carried on, conspiring with like-minded sorts, such as David Tibet (Current 93), Boyd Rice and whatever plump and pasty music nerd with a buzzcut might be around to great effect, essentially charting a whole genre of creepy as hell, pseudo-nationalist groups (such as Michael Moynihan's* Blood Axis
) that exists concurrently with Nick Cave, has some roots in the droning solo albums of Nico and the writings of 19th century neo-Pagans on pre-Christian civilizations, and makes a great deal many allusions, in album design and performance, to an idea of a mythologized Europe that never existed. Of course, putting all that into a blender, and adding a dash of misanthropism, is a fairly solid recipe for an ideological musical form that recalls, oh, I don't know, the Nazis, but really, there's nothing to worry about from these people, unless you live in Eastern Europe or Russia. People care about this stuff there, although I can only speculate whether Death In June fans will ever reach the level of fanaticism that characterizes the Manowar fanbase, whereas in North America, most fans will be kids who put the Magic (The Gathering!) cards away at an earlier age than their friends and picked up a Nietzsche book.

*Some more astute readers might recall Moynihan as the author of "The Lords of Chaos", a book which chronicled the Northern European Black Metal scene, and which, having read, one imagines was written with a smirk on the author's face.

And all of this brings us to tomorrow night, when, after Devandra Banhart and 6 Organs of Admittance perform a hallucinogenically-inspired set of Olde Invisible Folke ballads and Mountain Songs, Pavilion Projects will present (in co-operation with PopMontreal and Warrior Magazine) The Ten Commandments at Korova, from 12-4am. The Ten Commandments is the plural manifestation of one singular David Lewkewitch, former resident of Victoria, BC and source-point for songs about Rivers of Blood and Divine Retribution. In the lineup, Ami Brousseau (formerly of Victoria's Ghosts), ConU film grad Matthew Law, visual artist Michael Doerksen and saw-player Samara. In the wings, Michael Gira and Young God Records?

Monday, November 08, 2004

I'm 24 minutes into this "Anchorman" film, and I really can't muster up any enthusiasm to laugh about it... Juvenille humour I've got no real problem with (I mourn the passing of Mr. Show as much as anyone else), but this really isn't funny. Is there some vindication on the way in the next hour or so?

20 minutes later... Nope, still not very funny. Remember when people loved Dana Carvey?


SERIPOP EATING photograph by guy talked about below...

I think the Marauder's a two piece. They're from Toronto, that Mammon to the West of our Montreal, beloved and enlightened Venice. Konrad takes photos (look here and above, at the photo of the Seripop Twins) and gets photos taken of him, and I don't know about the other guy.

The Marauder - A Song.mp3


The Marauder is now a one piece, myself. The other guy is in Ninja High School now. Too cool for school. Our last show was this past Wednesday at Rancho Relaxo. I did a puppet show, HBO like biography on the history of the Marauder.

If any of you are interested, it's available @

Also, happy birthday to Konrad!

Saturday, November 06, 2004

Hmm. Some election, huh? Oh well, the Canadian dollar's doing well and Hot Snakes are playing in Montreal on Tuesday. Below's some more DFA idolatry (the first LCD Soundsystem track from 2001 and an UNKLE remix) and a truly wretched Spanish version of New Order's Bizarre Love Triangle.

LCD Soundsystem - Losing My edge.mp3

Unkle - In A State.mp3

Clotta - Triangulo de Amor Bizarro.mp3

Sunday, October 31, 2004

I'm watching the premiere of CBC's "H2O" right now, and the preliminary reviews are, a Canadian "Chinatown" with the production values of "24", which is apt as former "24" alumnus Leslie Hope is a member of the cast. Also, recovering from last night's Auto-Vaud party.

Saturday, October 30, 2004


If you're not out catching your favourite Misfits cover band or goosing yourself silly on hallucinogenics (err, ethneogens?) on the Island tonight, the North End of the Plateau promises some entertaining moments to be had... Automatic Vaudeville, Montreal's most prestigious and highly-regarded film-making collectif is hosting thier annual Hallowe'en bash tonight (that's Saturday) at Le Local, which some of may remember from the Pavilion Pop Montreal late-night happening. It's located at 7154 St. Urbain, just off of Jean Talon, and it's $2 to get it. DJ Mark Slutsky presides over the festivities with admirable acumen and (one hopes) a whole lotta DFA mixes.

As well, the Long Haul is hosting a fundraising Hallowe'en party tonight (on Belmont, just off of Ave. du Parc) with Lynne T. from LOX and others DJing.

And tomorrow night's Seripop Hallowe'en, details tomorrow. Look for me tonight, I'm Captain Haddock.

Friday, October 29, 2004

The Organ

Vancouver's The Organ will be in town tomorrow night, along with Toronto's Controller:Controller, who I hesitate to say are as mediocre as they are nice human beings. The Organ, however, are that rare combination of a swell band with swell members. Early new-wave in the vein of pre-programming-happy New Order, Echo & the Bunnymen and Stockholm Monsters. Two mp3s below...

Saturday, October 30th The Organ, Controller:Controller @ Petit Campus

The Organ - Memorize The City

The Organ - It's Time To Go

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Mid-Week Record Geek.

Now, I've got no love in my musical soul for blues-rock of most kinds, barely able to tolerate The Animals or The Kinks when they get into doing old standards, and a reluctant but ardent admirer of The Rolling Stones "Exile On Main St" album... And so it stands to reason I can't take the White Stripes or the Black Keys or any other nouveau garage/blues hybrid that's popped up in the last little while with two notable exceptions, the first being The Delta 72, and the second being Toronto's Deadly Snakes, who manage to sound like what I always wished the Blues Explosion sounded like, but were criminally unable to pull off. Listen below...

The Deadly Snakes - I'm Not Your Soldier Anymore.mp3

The Deadly Snakes - Burn Down The Valley.mp3

A Luna Red

For most people aware of them, the group seemed to appear and disappear as quickly as the GSL 7" got distributed, but most Vancouver or Victoria indie watchers will know A Luna Red as a fairly prominent industrial/post-punk with a far longer shelf-life than that, and a far less embarassing series of songs than Skinny Puppy. The group was formed by Jack Duckworth (of Radio Berlin) in 1999 or so, along with Erica Neumann and Bill Winslow-Hansen (now of Droom). Erica left to be replaced by Larissa Loyva (of P:ano). Later members included Graham Jackson(also of Droom), Sean Abare(of A Spectre Is Haunting Europe), Marina Stamboulieh (of the Automovement) and Neal Simpson. During the just under 5 years the group existed (with Jack Duckworth as the only consistent member, much like Mark E. Smith of the Fall), they managed to release two albums (one on Global Symphonic and the other on Action Driver), a self-released EP, a Global Symphonic split LP with San Fransisco's Ghost Orchids and that aforementiond 7" on GSL. Undoubtedly, Jack Duckworth is one of the most important figures in Vancouver music, and a criminally underappreciated musician in the larger indie scene as a whole. While it's unfortunate that Radio Berlin and A Luna Red have yet to receive attention on a broader scale, (though the Indie Godhead Pitchfork have heaped plenty of praise on the group) one hopes that with music fans will eventually catch up to him, as they eventually did to Radio Berlin (a group that foreshadowed the post-punk revival that now outfits every indie group with a high-hat-happy-disco-beat drummer)...

Jack disbanded A Luna Red earlier this year, after a lengthy period of adjusting and fine-tuning and opted to form a new group, Primes, with Michelle Synnot, a highly-regarded fixture in the electronica (for lack of a better word) scene in N. America and Europe.

A Luna Red - The Cut Ups.mp3 from The Death Birds

A Luna Red - SLMZK.mp3 from SLMZK 7"

Related mp3s

I mentioned above Radio Berlin, and I plan on writing a lot more about them later, but just for anyone curious, below's an mp3 off of their most recent album, Glass, available on Action Driver Records.

Radio Berlin - Aftermath.mp3

A Spectre Is Haunting Europe - Anarchid.mp3

P:ano - Afterschool Special.mp3

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Chinese Marching Into The Ocean.

Of interest to at least two or three of the five people who read this thing, here's an mp3 from Dan Beckner of Wolf Parade's old band, Atlas Strategic. (Daddy's Hands comparisons are not appreciated, thank you.) It's from their Global Symphonic debut, "Rapture Ye Minions" and isn't found on the "That's Familiar" EP.

Atlas Strategic - Jeered By Minor Demons

Last night Michelle and I took some time out of our busy schedule of guzzling booze and shoving American teenagers around on Ste-Catherine to catch "I Heart Huckabees". Keenly aware of just how awful this film was going to be, I (for one) left the film at least mildly amused. The film was terrible, parts of it even worse than I could have expected (peppered, context-less references to Kafka and Magritte, a loopy-doopy animistic philosophy erroneously defined as "existentialist"?), but there were a couple of things to be said in its favour - firstly, Jude Law and Naomi Watts' (no relation, thank you) performances were equally astonishing and amusing, much more so than Dustin Hoffman and Lily Tomlin, who, though seeming to be having fun with the, err, material, didn't interest me. Naomi Watts' character, a spokeswoman for the Huckabees line of big-box department stores, is especially great in one scene where, after a life-changing epiphany, she dons a bonnet and some baggy overalls and films an ennui-filled commercial for the corporation. And outside of that? Some brief moments of physical comedy, and thank fucking God that this was not another "soundtrack film", in the vein of Rushmore, Lost In Translation, and The Royal Tennanbaums. (I'm sure Napoleon Dynamite is similarly afflicted, but I'm not planning on seeing that anytime soon - probably just a remake of The Adventures of Sebastian Cole?). The Shania Twain cameo was putrid, on her part, though there seemed to be a slight skewering of her throughout the film, identifying her with a fanbase comprised of clueless parents and dimwitted office yokels.

Essentially, the film would have been better served by a once-over by the two people the director was trying to ape - Spike Jonze and Charlie Kaufmann... The skewering of the suburban minister's family, while a wee bit obvious of a target (cmon, SUVs?), was dead-on.

On our way back from the theatre (incidentally, the AMC Forum - my first time inside that building - what kind of monstrosity is that? The carpet? The grotesque hockey fan in the old forum seats? The crowd of people dancing to Lou Bega's "Mambo Number 5"?) I spotted my first piece of evidence that there actually exist real people who will be voting for George W. Bush. Sure, we're told the race is close and what not, but I think it's simply that the media wants to be perceived as journalistically objective that we're told this incumbent is doing so well, I mean, there couldn't be that many people on this planet that admire this man, right? Right? Err. Anyway, a late model luxury automobile with New Hampshire plates and a black and white Bush-Cheney 04 bumper sticker and a shrinkwrapped book on Christian living under the back window (shrinkwrapped book?!?!?!)... Michelle hypothesized that they were up here getting their flu shots, but I'm thinking that this was something a little more domestic - like a police plant to catch vandals - I mean, something that absurdly offensive on Ave. du Parc? And a shrinkwrapped book?

This weekend's Globe and Mail China special is astonishing - great articles by Jann Wong, Ian Brown and the rest of the staff. I even read the business section. I can recall in my childhood some friend of the family and member of the fundamentalist church I attended telling me that China was a force soon to be aligned with the AntiChrist, and that the Chinese would soon walk into the ocean, one after another, to cross it and invade North America. There seem to be some logistical problems with that, of course, but hey, when you're a member of a church that denies a metaphorical reading of the Bible in favour of a literal, well, all is possible! The Chinese walk into ocean is the beginning of a great joke that's yet to be written.

And finally, the only decent thing to come out of Calgary in, uhh, forever... Equal parts of the Rye Coalition and Six Finger Satellite, it's Fake Cops!

Fake Cops - Sir, You're Not Blowing

Friday, October 22, 2004

Portland, Oregon's Menomena have crafted a loving and jubilliant musical homage to public access television's Sista Social (no relation to Sista Solja).

Menomena - Sistasocial.mp3

CMJ Overview

From all reports, the highlight of CMJ this year was definetly the free bathrobes provided by Jane Magazine.

Radio Berlin - Gauze.mp3

Radio Berlin did not play CMJ.

I'm not drunk.


Some of that Californian "good-times on the beach with your Jeep" soul, SECRETKNIVES

Somewhat related: And I thought I had mastered the art of dismissive music writing... CJLO disc jockeys deflate your PopMontreal bubble. (How pathetic this 21st century has panned out, huh? A "blog" user complaining about people who play music over the internet.)

Thursday, October 21, 2004


Hot Snakes' new album "Audit in Progress" is the latest bit of evidence in my case. I maintain that the group is the newer, better version of Shellac with fanbase cross-over. Which, I suppose, makes Drive Like Jehu a version of Big Black.

Hot Snakes - Hi-Lights.mp3

Some surprise, I briefly talked to a friend while watching the remainder of the Boston/New York game at Copacabana and found out that Mu will be playing tomorrow night (Friday), at Club Soda, as part of the MEG Montreal festival. Unfortunately I've got a prior engagement DJing at The W Hotel bar (901 Square Victoria in Old Montreal) and won't be able to make it. The bill includes a live performance by Vive La Fete and DJ sets by Mu's Maurice Fulton, Sean Kosa and KPCK. Also on Friday, Nick and Jaime of The Unicorns will be DJing at a free showcase at SAT (on lower St. Laurent) from 5 to 8pm.

I'm going to check out ESG on Sunday - they're performing with Le Tigre, Gravy Train (ugh), and Cannonball Jane at Club Soda. It'll be interesting to see how ESG shapes up, and I'm not looking forward to the Le Tigre set, seeing as they won't have DFA on stage with them to remix those songs into something decent. Ba-dooom-shhhh!

Mu - Chair Girl.mp3 Sadly, of poor quality, but it'll give you an idea...

Also, Dante left Hot Hot Heat... No replacement as of yet, but who's even left in Victoria to fill the bill? Michael Melgaard? Dan And? Or will they pick up a former member of Econoline Crush?

Comets on Fire - The Antlers of the Midnight Sun.mp3 - I can visualize the Orange amplifier stacks...

Tuesday, October 19, 2004


DFA, , just released two astonishing records, keeping on par with their tortoise-like release schedule (expecting to see that LCD Soundsystem appear in about a year or so). Pixeltan, with Hisham, formerly of Black Dice on the drum-set, propels listeners into the four-on-the-floor stratosphere with "Get Up / Say What", with appropriately spooky vocal effects for the upcoming Hallowe'en season. J.O.Y.'s got Yoshimi from the Boredoms hanging out with some UNKLE guys, re-releasing the single that was previously only available on Japan's Ape Sounds Records. You can preview the two A-sides on DFA's site.

November sees a 3-CD set of unreleased DFA stuff being released, too. Xmas rush!

A: "Get Up/ Say What" DFA Remix
B: "Get Up"
"That's The Way I Like It"

A: Sunplus
B: Sunplus DFA Version.

In related news, Output Recordings have a new release out by Maurice Fulton's post-punk-funck-fest, Mu... The A-side is Paris Hilton, the B-side is We Love Guys Named Luke. Limited release again, expect to see a copy of it up on a knowledgeable record store's shelf for $250 or so in a couple of months... If it's anything like the full-length, I expect I'll be drooling all over it.

Saturday, October 16, 2004

Pleasure Forever...

Pleasure Forever, now deceased, were one of those groups that I followed with a keen interest... In their first incarnation as Slaves, my interest was mostly because the band was comprised of 3/4 of The VSS (the other 1/4 being Sunny Kay, proprietor of GSL and current member of Yr Future), who had released "Nervous Circuits" which topped, and still tops, my list of favourite albums.

The VSS - In Miniature.mp3 from Nervous Circuits

Slaves released two EPs, one self-titled, and "The Devil's Pleasures", both of which were collected on a 1999 TroublemanUnlimited CD, also titled "The Devil's Pleasures." Sex, death, and gnostic rituals.

Slaves - Chemical Priest.mp3 from "The Devil's Pleasures".

After that, the group changed their name to Pleasure Forever, were signed to Sub Pop, and released two albums (self-titled and "Alter") as well as a single, neither of which sold stunningly well, but fared better critically and sold to that enthusiastic group of music buyers that might count Antioch Arrow's "Gems of Masochism" as a crucial album to have in their collections. The albums are evocative, droning, cabaret-tinged affairs, recalling the darker elements of The Doors and Echo & the Bunnymen or Crime & The City Solution, with the piano used as the lead instrument (as in the VSS) and that puts them in the same family as art-damaged groups such as The Get Hustle and Birdland. While "Alter" is a gorgeously textured and theatrical element, it's marred by the ill-advised move of having Rothbard record his vocals over a department store PA system. (Better than a vocoder, however: ahem, Trans Am).

Pleasure Forever - Goodnight.mp3 from the self-titled album.

Pleasure Forever - Wicked, Shivering Columbine.mp3 from Alter.

l-r: Jennifer Pearl, David Clifford, Kevin Garrison

David Clifford, the drummer, has moved on to Lion Fever, joining Jennifer Pearl, formerly of the Lost Kids and Kevin Garrison, of The Get Hustle and Angelhair (which, coincidentally enough, was the precursor band to The VSS, and one of the main architects of that Gravity Records-styled, "San Diego sound"* despite originating in Colarado.) As you can hear on the below track, their sound owes a lot to both The Lost Kids and The Starlite Desperation...

Lion Fever - Slave.mp3

Andrew Rothbard left Pleasure Forever in the fall of last year, and though Joshua Hughes and David Clifford had intended to carry on, nary a peep has been heard from them since then, outside of a one-off gig with a group called Coast Ghost and the Abandoned Meaner last November.

*Such as: Drive Like Jehu, The Swing Kids, The VSS, Antioch Arrow, The Crimson Curse, so on and so forth... Every single music-playing resident of San Diego seems to have moved to Portland in the past couple of years, much like the Victoria to Montreal exodus in Canada.

Another note: Lion Fever will be playing at the Dim Mak showcase at the Knitting Factory in New York City along with Montreal's Pony Up! a week from tonight, on Saturday, October 25th.

Les Georges Leningrad

Les Georges plug in the Juno 60 (or a DX7 or something), add some vocal delay, and bring out the most influential percussive instrument in the past two years, the cowbell, on sponsorships.mp3 off of their most recent album, "Sur les traces de Black Eskimo" on Alien8 recordings. Sponsorship scandal? Political wonk song?

Also, mythical creatures + British code-word for abrasive, back-alley homosexual sexual encounters. Anyone know when it's going to be announced?

All Panther bands stink.

On the invitation of Dr. Robin Simpson, esteemed colleague and now in the employ of psychonaut journal Warrior Magazine, I attended the opening of the W Hotel watering hole in Square Victoria last night. Flashing lights, music by my new nemesis DJ Adam Gollner, happy-dancing to New Order provided by Raf Katigbak (with Syd Barrett neck scarf),

According to ubsubstantiated rumour (the best kind), a member of one of those local buzz-bands left the bar with an unpaid $1200 tab.

British Sea Power, that Brightonian group of the confusing stage arrangements, wheezy Eno & Bowie vocals, and wonkish lyrical content popped up a bit and then were quickly ignored by N. American press, released another album last month, "The Spirit of St. Louis" on Toyo*. Whether this Lindberghian album was released at this point to coincide with the release of Philip Roth's premise-laden "The Plot Against America" hasn't been mentioned yet. Any NME readers out there will recall that publication's adulation of BSP, which probably prompted Pitchfork to mention it and review the band terribly, or (if the reviewer was an honest sort) give them good marks in spite of it. Clueless comparisons to Joy Division have been made - I'm hard-pressed to hear the similarities. The group definetly owes something to Bowie (namely vocal stylings), but outside of that, the ethereal washiness must echo the sounds of Brighton beaches in foggy, miserable February.

Recent British naval exports purchased by Canadians haven't fared that well lately, however. Be wary!

CBC's Just Concerts site has a live recording of their performance at Richard's on Richards in Vancouver earlier this year available.

British Sea Power "Carrion" - Live at Glastonbury mp3 (from the Salty Water BSP fansite.

*No, not the home of Pink-And-Brown Toyo Records, the other one...

This upcoming Wednesday, the 20th seems to be a busy enough night for shows, with 2/3 of Montreal's Wolf bands performing...

At The Electric Tractor, Baltimore's Double Dagger (who are said to resemble Le Shok more than Half-Japanese) are playing with AIDS Wolf, their first show in possibly as many months as it takes to make a baby. It's an early show, doors at 7pm or so.

Moving Units, the herky-jerky hi-hat riding group (with two kids from 31g's Festival of Dead Deer) play with The Chinese Stars (members of Arab on Radar and Six Finger Satellite), Kill Me Tomorrow, and Saturday Looks Good To Me at El Salon that same night.

Les Breastfeeders and We Are Wolves are at Cabaret La Tulipe, wherever the hell that might be, and Echo Kitty play with guests at Escogriffe.


Monday, October 11, 2004

"...You always wondered why he was in the Travelling Willburries."

The single from the new Glass Candy and the Shattered Theatre album will be released tomorrow, on TroublemanUnlimited. I have to admit that the last album "Love Love Love", while representing the group well with some well-written songs, lost something in terms of production... Perhaps the mastering?

Glass Candy - Love Love Love.mp3

The Destroyer/Black Mountain split on Spirit of Orr Records is out - distributed by Scratch in Canada, you should be able to find it at Ditch Records in Victoria, BC... There's an mp3 below. A remix of "Druganaut" was released on Jagjaguwar Records earlier this year to be followed by a full-length to be released in January of 2005.

Black Mountain - Druganaut.mp3

And Black Mountain's Steve McBean is, as many of you already know, skulking about, writing perverse songs under the moniker Pink Mountaintops. Unreleased mp3 below. (Thanks, Hive Studios!)

Pink Mountaintops - Erected.mp3

The Baron Samedi Ecstatic Soul Quintet, with returned globe-trotting frontman Steven Balogh, will be performing in Vancouver this Friday, October 16th @ the Astoria with The Christa Min, Cadeaux (with Rick O'Dell, formerly of Sharp Teeth), and YouSayParty!WeSayDie!.

October, 16 2004 at the Astoria
769 E. Hastings, Vancouver, BC

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Various Bits...

The Boy Who Climbed Trees - Alex (l) and Jenn Wong (r)

Vancouver's Terminal City alternative weekly is undergoing some sort of transformations. Sometimes Goldkicks contributor (well, she's got the password anyway) and unabashed Weezer fan Jenn Wong will be appearing on the masthead as the new Music Editor. Congratulations!

The end of PopMontreal doesn't mean that there's no live music going on for the next couple of weeks, just nothing that good. Paul Cargnello, probably the only Socialist to have licensed a song to almost-forgotten television series Dawson's Creek, is performing at Sala Rosa tomorrow (Thursday) night. Danko Jones, the most annoying Filipino to ever don a fedora (and I've seen a few tagalog films), will be performing another set of uninspired and lazily crafted "garage" rock on Friday night. At least they love him in Sweden. Also that night, Las Vegas' The Killers perform with Sea&Cake-in-disguise Ambulance Ltd. at Club Soda.

Sunday is kids-with-bikes-and-patches night at the Cryo Chamber, 1180 St-Antoine, as Japanther (not to be confused with The Panthers, the Brooklyn-based recently finding their stride as a Filter cover band) hit the city, reviving the hopes that lay dormant in the hearts of all Reversal of Man fans for the past couple of years...* Who's The Ghost, the double-bass n' drums trio featuring Brian Mitchell, formerly of Vancouver hardcore outfit September open up, along with Dataskin.

Now how often did I relate one band to another one in a snarky, flippant manner above? Having just passed my 24th birthday, I think it's safe to say I've turned into an embittered old man who's seen it all. I'll be balding, tubby and wearing an oversized Pixies t-shirt in about four months.

* Let me clarify something - I don't appreciate Japanther, I find them an artless and derivative group of poorly put-together Svenonius gestures, the members overly proud of their discovery of French situationist theory; a little like The International Noise Conspiracy if they smoked more pot and secretly coveted every issue of Vice.

Sunday, October 03, 2004

After Expo67, Montreal was a barren cultural landscape of isolationist Ivory Tower academics and E-popping raver-hippy hybrids until PopMontreal came along...

The last night of the PopMontreal and no reported overdoses, which makes the event an unqualified success, though I'm wondering how many washes the pile of clothing in the corner of the room is going to take before it ceases reeking of cigarette smoke. I caught Frog Eyes on Wednesday night - they played a half hour set to a crowd of respectful, if slightly bewildered, CEGEP Tegan n' Sara fans... Genevieve et Mathieu's inspired performance at Pavilion 2 of old French children's songs, scronky no-wave missives and bewildering "House of The Rising Sun" re-works set the pace for a night of industrial strength boozing and dance-floor busting in an out-of-the-way venue that managed to bring out a more than respectable crowd. Robin Simpson's mischevious placement of the hide-a-bed promised a lot of action, but unfortunately didn't deliver any - although after a number of dixie cups of Griffon Blonde, I probably wouldn't have been able to stomach any spontaneous exhibitionistic practices. Though I spent most of last night in a corner, contemplating whether or not one could follow up Madness' "Our House" with Brian Eno's "Third Uncle" and other such demanding dilemmas, I did get to escape for a brief period when teetotalling Warren Hill spun a bit, and caught a glimpse of the free-styling action in the other room at the Long Haul space, which reached some sort of arbitrary capacity fairly early on into the night. Being a man of slight height, I only managed to see a Besnard Lake-ian thumping away at the bass guitar while a gentleman in an afro (HIP HOP WATCHERS, whom was that?) traded rhymes with a short, lil' hispanic man. That wasn't Kool Keith - that wasn't Beans!

Apparently Franz Ferdinand was delightful, as were the Dears, performing some sort of Rock Opera (a little early in the game for that sort of thing, don't you think? But when one begins grandiose and slightly baroque...). Donald K. Donald's Indian food was a little cold and the music videos projected on the backwall of the Main Hall (slash Mile End Cultural Centre) were perfect fodder for slack and lazy sarcastic commentary. "Is that Sook Yin Lee? What's she doing? She's a nurse now? A mail-order bride?" "A screamo band with a brass section? BRILLIANT!" I'm loathe to admit it, but I'd never heard of this gargantuan Torontonian power broker before, perhaps not following the careers of I Mother Earth or Remy Shand as closely as one would expect, and ol' D-Squared himself didn't even show up!

Late night party-attendees might want to keep this in mind for future soirees: waiting a couple of hours before ample coke-dust settles on the window-sill and taking it all up your nose about five minutes prior to 7am is probably the most cost-effective way to party... Alone. Others might try the approach covered in the most recent issue of New York magazine and long practiced by sensible sorts I've had the occasion to mingle with once or twice: snorting drugs prescribed for ADD.

Mission of Burma will be performing in about 15 minutes at Cabaret, though I'm sure it's a long shot to get in at this point, even with one of those fancy Pony or Nokia passes dangling about your neck. But then, those in the know will be making their way to Miami tonight, to capture a performance sponsored both by Deeselig's own Dingrod (arguably the biggest street-legal in this city) and Zellers. Heart of Amulet, a duo stuffed to the neck with a pervasive sense of historical importance and thematic brilliance (????) perform at 1:48am exactly, just after The Faggot Face Forskins and prior to Burning Pit of Hell and Cougars Are Lovers, Too. Pack yourself into the only venue in the festival with a noticable Russian mafioso presence and enjoy the plywood interior design scheme and stale beer.

The Forms didn't make it across the border, thus forfeiting their match against locals EchoKitty. Sending in a Helmet coverband as their replacement didn't achieve the desired effect either, though the one dreadlocked and braided-bearded gentleman (I had once shared a taxicab to Old Montreal with his companion, who was just at that time peaking on mushrooms) who had recently sucked back some LSD really dug them.

More PopMontreal stuff, including photos and snarky comments about industry people with bad pants/hair to follow in the next few days...

Thursday, September 30, 2004


Hey all, I'm spinning tonight (That's Thursday evening - 1000 apologies for wrongly stating it was last night)at Robin Simpson's Pavilion 2 Event. Show up and heckle me from the floor as I spin nothing but over-indulgent pseudo-psychedelic trash. It's part of the PopMontreal festival. Details bellow.

A late-night actionist invocation, Pavilion Two presents: It's beautiful but things are gonna change. A sea of blood, tears, spittle, fumes and acrylics all illuminated by a rainbow. Leaving the stale smoke of after hours behind, Pavilion picks up the crowd and bids them good night into our prepared landscape.

Featuring a new body of work by Stéphanie Chabot
Performance by Geneviève et Matthieu
with DJs: Cécile Pétrole (ex-Nuance),Jay Watts III,Prions en Église

Pavilion Two
Thurs. Sept. 30th
12am - ?

7154, St.Urbain
(metro Jean Talon)

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

"Dance Destructive" vernissage

This week at Gallery X, Montreal-based artist Jody Ferguson exhibits five photographs in a series entitled "Dance Destructive."

The vernissage is tonight at 7pm.

Gallery X is located on the second floor in the Concordia Visual Arts building at the bottom of the Crescent and Rene Levesque intersection.

More information on upcoming shows, submission guidelines and art-star gossip:

Monday, September 27, 2004

Lupid Festival.

As of today, Wolf Parade have left Montreal for the shady and dewy environs of Portland, Oregon, where they'll be recording at Herr Brock's studio. From there, there are planned performances for The Brickyard in Vancouver on October 28th, the 50/50 Art Collective' Hallowe'en bash on October 29th, All Tomorrow's Parties in Los Angeles at the beginning of November and a tour that sends them on their way home.

Sunday, September 26, 2004

Arcade Fire show...

I was surprised to spy, upon entering the Citadel a bit late, that Jeremy Gara (formerly of Weights & Measures and all-around nice fellow) was playing with the Arcade Fire. Arlen Thompson, Wolf Parade's drummer, also joined them for the first song of their second set. The space was predictably packed, and the majority of the crowd well-behaved, obeying the posted signs prohibiting standing on the pews. Complaints? None really - the sound was a bit muddy every now and then, and it was damned hot, but that made the event a lot more reminiscent of the Pentecostal shake-fests of my youth, which gave me an occasional shiver.

Dan Seligman et al. pulled the feat off marvellously, especially when one considers just how busy they've all been preparing for PopMontreal. Alright, I'm off to to check out what the armchair pedants are complaining about. It's a marvellous day out - lay about in the park.

Friday, September 24, 2004

Luke Ramsey Vernissage

image from

The opening for Victoria born n' bred artist Luke Ramsey's installation is tonight (Friday) at the Turf Gallery in Old Montreal (410 St. Pierre) at 5pm. Expect bunnies, graffiti-influenced illustration, hallucinogenic visions, comics and the like. The show runs until October 2nd. Bring galoshes.

Luke Ramsey's website

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

The best festival in Canada, unfortunately not featuring the best band in Canada (fuck the Trews, I can't handle the Trews, it's Wolf Parade(!), who will be off recording in Portland and playing All Tomorrow's Parties in LA on November 6th), PopMontreal is a week away, setting a mighty high bar for the Halifax Pop Explosion to reach for. HFP's confirmation of the appearance of SNFU secures them a modicum of respectability, of course. And ho! what's this, Three Inches of Blood is performing? I remember them! Their line-up shuffling, interband squabbles and prog-rock tendencies will only assure me of a place in history, twenty years hence, as the Syd Barrett to their Pink Floyd. Nosy reporters may find me at such a time paunchy, dazed and gardening outside my mother's flat.

In the next week, I'll post some choice picks from the PopMontreal lineup, not forgetting to plug the showcase I'm hosting for Montreal's own poorly-named but better-dressed Duran-Duran-redux group ECHOKITTY (oh yeah, and some other groups, too) on Saturday or the return of Robin Simpson's PAVILION PROJECT. Fresh from the land of pickled herring and a population obsessed with text-messaging, Simpson et. al return to prod, pontificate and err, ahh, play about with the audience's damnable regressive consciousness or what not.

This Friday, Andy Dixon, formerly of Vancouver's The Red Light Sting, co-owner of Ache Records, part-time programmer of internet porno websites and recent soundtrack provider to a skateboard shoe commercial finds his way to Montreal to perform as Secret Mommy, laptop tweaker in the IDM vein, along with pals Tinkertoy (the third product of the Kootenay Mountain region in British Columbia to make it this far east - the other two being Kokanee beer and dirty hippy-punks), Cailloux and Carbone, and DJs Utility and Ovalroster.

Friday, September 24th, 10pm
O Patro Vys (356 Mt.Royal E)
$6 adv./ $8 door

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Vernissage: Montreal

Photographer/sculptor and former Victoria, BC resident Michael Doerksen will be exhibiting a series of photographs entitled "To Take The Air" tonight at Cafe X, located on the second floor of the Concordia University Visual Arts Building (corner of Rene Levesque & Crescent), at 7pm. The six photographs, taken of unaware subjects over a period of two years while engaged in what the over-eager post-Marxist theorists in anyone's first year Arts Methods course might title "psychogeographic practice" (a la Debord et al.) curdle the blood and remind us all of the impedements of frail human mortality on our deepest desires, etc. etc. etc.

The other component of the exhibit might be titled "Careful With That Axe, Eugene" as Doerksen fells his 2003 sculpture "Boy Falling From 10 Feet For Infinity" (thus making the infinite finite in one fell hack, or maybe a couple) in the courtyard of the building. Shazam!

Friday, September 17, 2004

FashionWeek Round-Up


Hint Magazine has photos from the runways and backstages of the various Fashionweeks for Spring 2005. Nothing too wild or special, outside of Japanese boys dressed in mock-samurai and face-masks made of braided hair. A hoodless-windbreaker mysteriously popped up in the Givenchy collection, and it wasn't under a blazer either, confusing about 70 or so people in Williamsburg. The Helmut Lang male line features bizarre knotted-rope accessories attached to belts, curious little additions in a far too kitschy n' gay showing, perhaps designed with the need for overweight Eurotrash queens to have something to drag their lily-faced and drugged rent boys by in mind. Some of the Hermes models looked like sissified Depression-era Oakies, Galiano turned in an embarassing homage to "Gangs of New York" and the Wild West, and turbans appeared in a couple of collections ('classically'-inspired Imitation of Christ, for example.) Paris was arty, Milan was airy, and Brazil had a tropically baroque feel - sounds predictable enough, huh?

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Warrior Magazine Launch


Warrior Magazine is celebrating the its inaggaural issue tomorrow night (Friday, September 17th) with a launch party at the new (as of this summer) Greenland Productions run Mile End Cultural Centre... Invite-only schmoozing and guestlist-addicts before hand at 8pm, followed by general admission at 3am, with DJing by Swayz Matez, Brian Fairy, Bliss and Miss Matches, as well as "prize giveaways and the hottest tote-bags and tie-die Tees to ever hit the block." Unquote.

This first issue has an interview with RISD alumni Animal Collective, manipulated-by-Andrew-Loog-Oldham and Piano Magic collaborator Vashti Bunyan and Patrick Swayze. Ugh. Is Patrick Swayze undergoing a revival of the sorts that propelled Bill Murray into the hearts of every Johnny-Come-Lately Kinks fan? Warrior Magazine promises great things, such as engendering creative and political spaces free of commercial constraints with a bit of the "seamless psychedelic explosion," etc. etc. Let's all bite our tongues, cross our fingers and hope that this doesn't turn out to be another Trucker Magazine, or (god help us all) Nightlife Magazine. Kinda suspicious that the Arcade Fire aren't featured on the cover though, perhaps it isn't published in Montreal.

Mile End Cultural Center: 5390 St. Laurent