Discorder CITR-FM (Radio station : Vancouver, B.C.) 2006-12-01

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 Decembuary/Jancember 2006
That browned out magazine from CITR 101.9 FM iC
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Siictunr is clisil Ik 241 lie 31 fit tbi liliiifs lit we re-open January t PIis don't miss a very
special miff party is m imdi til mini fir m sight inly with spinal pist IJ Cmtrasnil I
The Friends of CiTR Card
Show it when you shop!
The Regional Assernbly of Text, 3934 Mata|gj»^
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friends@citr.ca ^sp*
www.cilr.ca/friends M8cwS»@0t
David Ravensbergen
Art Director
Will Brown
Review Manager
Jordie Sparkle
Layout & Design
Will Brown
Alanna Scott
Production Team
Will Brown
Michelle Mayne
Catherine Rana
David Ravensbergen
Alanna Scott
! Graeme Worthy
Photo & Illustration
Blythe Dresser
Sean Maxey
Michelle Mayne
Greg McMullen
Akmal Naim
Laura Russell
Alanna Scott
Kirstie Shanley
Lucas Soi
The Winks
Luke JVIeat
Probably David and Will
US Distribution
Frankie Rumbletone
Student Radio Society
of UBC
The Gentle Art of Editing
David Ravensbergen
Cinema Aspirant
Allan Maclnnis
Strut, Fret and Flicker
Penelope Mulligan
Riff Raff
Bryce Dunn
Textually Active
Baby, It's Cold Outside
Spectres of Discord
David Ravensbergen
Decembuary/Jancember Calendar
Lucas Soi
Real Live Action
Under Review
CiTR Charts
The Dopest Hits of October 2006
Program Guide
Luke Meat's Best And    9
CiTR's resident malcontent passes judgement      10
on the year in music.
Reluctant Recordings
Don't let the name fool you—Evan Carleton is      12
eager to sign the hottest Canadian bands.
Daytrotter «
The little studio that could.
Beach House 14
These two Carpark lovebirds reveal that all the
best bands are from Baltimore!
Parental Record Reviews   17
Despite what Will Smith thinks, our parents do
understand, sometimes.
Xiu Xiu 2-
Jamie Stewart is too honest for his own good.
Chris Walter
Local punk author discuss his move from the        24
gutter to your bookshelf.
Shindig! 2006 26
The happiest man alive examines this year's
weekly jamboree at the Railway Club.
Winks Tour Diary n
The Winks went on tour. Jerf was there.
Portland Hotel Society  n
Tackling the housing crises in the DTES.
Cover Photography
by Michelle Mayne
© DiSCORDER 2006/2007 by the Student Radio Society of the University of British Columbia. All rights
reserved. Circulation 10,000. Subscriptions, payable in advance, to Canadian residents are $15 for one
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Please make cheques or money orders payable to DiSCORDER Magazine. DEADLINES: Copy deadline
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other unsolicited material. Material can be submitted on disc or in type or via email. As always, English is
preferred, but we will accept French. Actually, we won't. Send words to discordered@gmail.com and art to
discorderart@gmail.com. From UBC to Langley and Squamish to Bellingham, CiTR can be heard at 101.9
FM as well as through all major cable systems in the Lower Mainland, except Shaw in White Rock. Call the
CiTR DJ line at 822.2487, our office at 822.3017, or our news and sports lines at 822.3017 ext. 2. Fax
us at 822.9364, e-mail us at: citrmgr@mail.ams.ubc.ca, visit our web site at www.citr.caor just pick up a
goddamn pen and write #233-6138 SUB Blvd., Vancouver. BC, V6T 1Z1, CANADA.
the Gentle Art of Editing
The days are short and dark, and the winter
chill leaves me wishing I could turn up the
thermostat on my blood temperature—in short,
it's beard season again. With the publication of
this, our hybrid year-end/inaugural issue, I have
officially been at the helm of this magazine for one'
year. Around this time last year, my beard had
reached Marxist proportions, increasing the size of
my head to the point where I looked like a newspaper
caricature of an indie kid: skinny legs, slight torso,
giant head. Since then, my facial hair has gone
through a number of permutations, including a
rare, vulnerable phase where my chin skin was
exposed to the light of day. I wear a beard not only
out of an aversion to personal maintenance, but
also as a way to mark the passage of time. Beards
are like tree rings. If I had saved my clippings from
the last year, I could read in them a secret history,
a memoir of personal triumphs and frustrations.
Large piles of hair would indicate periods of reckless
optimism, while a few sparse ends might speak of a
more pensive outlook. But since I adhere to at least
a modicum of personal hygiene, I'll have to settle
for looking back through the magazine.
Reading back issues feels like looking through
an old journal, half-surprised at the contents.
"What the hell was I thinking when I wrote that?"
comes up often enough, but so does that smug
feeling that you get from seeing something you did
that still looks pretty rad. There have been some
sketchy editorials, written in a late-night haze
with the dread of getting up for work on the brain.
I've made some lazy content-picking decisions,
especially during those dismal times when the
magazine felt like little more than the promotional
arm of the recording industry. But there have also,
been inspiredmoments of well-hewn grammar, and
features that cut through the hype smokescreen
and spoke the truth. I like to think my magazine
skills.have been growing steadily along with my
Overall, when I look back at what our
dedicated staff has done this year, I can't help but
feel a surge of pride. Will and Alanna have carved
out a fresh aesthetic, and our steadily growing team
of writers has contributed some excellent content.
I hope we've made some kind of measurable
impact on the local mediascape, even if it is simply
providing a voice for bands with beards, and the
beardos that love them. But more than that, our
magazine continues to gives writers and artists an
opportunity to have their say in the way culture is
generated. In a city where alternative journalism
suffers under the crass leadership of The Georgia
Straight, Discorder serves as a reminder that
mediocre public discourse persists only if we let it.
If we could all translate our discontent into action,
news weeklies with glamour shots of snowboarding
fashion on the cover would be a thing of the past.
Our magazine might not change that much, but
we'd be happy to print your angry letters.
For now, my beard is flourishing and
dandruff-free, and I'm looking forward to a
month's vacation. The Christmas holidays aren't
exactly my favourite time of year, but with a fresh
blanket of snow dousing the city's consumer
frenzy, prospects for the next month in Vancouver
are looking pretty good. Discorder will return in
February with renewed vigour, waiting for you to
getinvolved.   j»
David Ravensbergen, Editor
Discorder     03 g^^^^AVr^w^
Allan Maclnnis
A Cinema Aspirant
The Christmas holidays are by far my least favourite time of year. The days are dark, wet, cold, and
short; consumer fury grips the hearts of urbanites;
and Starbucks starts playing Christmas carols all the
fucking time. Here are a few recommendations of
films easily found on DVD that might help you connect emotionally and perhaps find a few authentically
redemptive moments amidst all the false cheer.
9 KB
The Passion of Anna
Or not: the first film is my favourite crucifixion,
The Passion of Anna, by Ingmar Bergman (what's
Christmas without a crucifixion or two?). The main
character, Andreas Wikelmann (played by Bergman
regular Max von Sydow) is no saviour, but an embittered recluse, humiliated by life, who spends his free
time drinking gin and feeling sorry for himself. He's
slowly drawn back into engagement with the world
by virtue of a new relationship with a recent widow,
Anna (Liv Ullmann). The mistranslated title makes
it seem like Anna's romantic passion, or perhaps her passionate
(false) faith in the power of love,
is the centerpiece of the film, but
really, the passion at stake is that
of Andreas, and the term is used
in its original sense. Bergman
hammers the (metaphoric) nails
into Andreas' wrists with grim
precision and a certain strange
glee. Bergman even nails his own
sadism, with a rather unkind
caricature of himself provided by
Erland Josephson (soon to be on
screen locally in Tarkovsky's The
4    Jancember 2007
Sacrifice at the Cinematheque, which, like most of
Bergman's films, is shot by the recently departed Sven
Nykvist and only deals with the biggest of big themes).
Bergman himself apparently doesn't think much of The
Passion these days—he's embarrassed that the women's
miniskirts date the film—but it's my favourite of his
movies, and I've seen many.
Another everyday crucifixion occurs in Rob
Nilsson's Cassavetes tribute, Signal 7. This one is
about a group of taxi drivers in San Francisco, two of
whom happen to be actors. Workshopped by Nilsson
with the cast, the film is, in my reckoning, the truest approximation of Cassavetes' aesthetic ever put on
screen by someone other than Cassavetes—though a
recent Japanese attempt by director Ikawa Kotaro, Lost
in Tokyo, stands up there as well. Both films follow a
certain formula, which I guess could be called Extract
of John: the characters live fairly routine lives, denying
their own problems and pain and confusion. Tensions
and troubles mount, and the veneer of normalcy and
denial grows more and more strained, until there is
finally an eruption, and emotion floods forth in an
unstoppable torrent. I find it quite healing, though
friends of mine that I've shared these films with tend
to look at me strangely when I say this.
On the topic of Cassavetes, if any of you have
missed A Woman Under the Influence, it's very powerful and an excellent curative for having to spend
too much time with your family this holiday season.
Vancouver's excellent and scandalously underused
critic Tom Charity says of it that it "really churned me
up emotionally [...] it had a huge impact on me, and
that impact has not been diminished. I've watched the
film I-don't-know-how-many times, very closely, and
if I watched it today, it would still have that impact
on me, I'm sure." Mikey and Nicky is also a must-see
for those interested in exploring Cassavetes. It's a
grim tale about the resentments and recriminations
that smoulder under the surface of a friendship, and
another great take on Cassavetes' aesthetic, as done
by someone else (Elaine May). Recently restored for
DVD, the film stars Peter Falk and John Cassavetes,
and is powerful, compelling, and has a fair share of
narrative tension; there are even guns involved.
Though they suit the season, I can earn no points
among cinema cognoscenti for recommending
Kurosawa's flciru and Dreyer's Passion of Joan of Arc,
since everyone, of course, has seen these films. On the
off chance you haven't: flriru is a beautiful, sad, warm
movie about a Japanese bureaucrat dying of stomach
cancer. It is genuinely touching and inspiring and takes
a few well-placed shots at the less forgivable aspects of
Japanese culture. The Passion of Joan of Arc, meanwhile,
is the martyrdom tale to end all martyrdom tales, and
makes the Luc Besson film look like it was produced by
Walt Disney. Renee Falconetti gives an amazing performance, almost matched by that of Antonin Artaud;
once you've seen this film, their faces will remain unforgettable. Richard Einhorn's score for the restored
Criterion DVD is very moving, too.
For something more contemporary, see Kiarostami's
A Taste of Cherry, one of many amazing films to recently come out of Iran. The film is best served with no
prior knowledge of its content, so don't even read the
DVD case. Just trust me. It's in keeping with the rest of
the films in this column, though it arguably ends on a
more hopeful note than, say, The Passion of Anna.
Finally, for those seeking a truly dark Christmas,
I'll be showing Ken Russell's The Devils (in partially-restored, widescreen form, including the notorious Rape
of Christ scene) and Philip Ridley's The Reflecting Skin
at Blim on December 22nd. Naked, orgying, vomiting
nuns and a prairie David Lynch—how can anyone resist? Unfortunately, it's happening a bit close to the
23rd for my liking—when Bela Tarr's Satantango will be
playing at the Vancity. This film should also serve as a
powerful remedy for the crassness of the season; seven
hours of the fall of communism and the nature of evil
are exactly what the doctor orders. Dr. Al, that is.
Merry Christmas, folks! j|
Cinema Aspirant: Variations on a Theme
By Allan MacInnis and Elizabeth Bachinsky
Inanimate Scrap/ Arcane Timpanis/ Maintain Casper/ I Parent maniacs/ Rent camp in Asia/ Art is
panic, amen/ Nice rastaman P.L/ Armani cat penis/ Inca ma pertains/ Ants caper in mai/ An air imp
ascent/ Panama rice tins/ Apnea trims cain/ A miscreant pain/ Marina's nitecap/ A starman pie in c/
Retina sac in pam/ Aim, prince satan/ A mantis crap in e/ Main arcane spit/ I crept in as a man /1, Anita
- sperm can/ A catnip remains/ Retina aspic man/ Crimean pinatas/ Anna's C.I.A. permit/ In Cartman
as pie/ A prim insane cat/ Camera is tinpan/ Persian can't aim/ A Partisan mince/ A prim canine sat/ A
spearmint inca/ Am a inane script/A stripmine, a can/ Race pain matins/ Nae, animist carp/ Santa came
in, R.I.P./ Is a cramp innate?/ Rien stamina cap/ Carmine is a pant/ In Ma's pict areana/ I, Cartman
sapien/ I, pain sacrament/ I'm carpet in Saan/ I am rap canniest/ I am parts canine/ I am pant aresnic/
I'm a catnip snare/ Main pirate scan/ I marine span cat/ E spirit in a can/ Prim Caananites/ A nice
rant is map/ Nice pair sat man/ Penis at main car/ I name past carin/ Spice an martian/ Mine par in
a cast/ I'm captain seran/ Arc am in panties/ Martian cap sine/ A term in Caspian/ Mat a Spain rinse/
Aspartame in INC./ I'm an strain cape/ Raisin tamp cane/ Sprain I came ant/ Apsartic in Mane/ Niacin
same part/ Mica sprite naan/ Price Stan anima/ Stamina pin care/ I master nap I can/ I pact Armenians/
Iranian camp set/ I'm ten Asian carp/ Can simian patter/ Incite a prams an/ Aspire in man act/ Mace
in aspirant/ Mice snair a pant/ I can pie's mantra/ Pair as cane mint/ Ice maps ain't ran/ Rain ices am
pant/ Mince anti as rap/ Races an timpani/ I'm a pain trances/ Trains pace in am/ I space train man/
Raise at camp inn/ Mean raisin camp/ Mace asian print/ Mini at a prances/ In a mars picante/ Pastime
in ancar/ Manna cites a rip/ I spam incarnate/ Am sprite in a can/ I a miscreant nap/ A pint acne's a
rim/ Cantine is a pram/ Rent I'm a Caspian/ Scrim an anti pea / A simper in an act/ I prance in a mast/
I'm a canter pains/ Ipaneman is a cart/ Partisan came in/ Escap't Nam. I ran./ A scrap in an emit/ Rice
man as pint/ Pint as a Crimean/ Marine as pecant/ An peas cram in it/ I'm pears a tin can/ Canape mist
rain/ Canine aim sprat/ Cast pan I remain/ Rasta in acme pin/ Can't I praise man/ Amanita princes/
Captain smearin'/ Maniac painters/ Acne is an armpit/ Macinnis art ape/ Sir panacea mint/ An' in
came tapirs/ I incarnate spane/ Scar pain inmate/ An insect air map/ Parisian catmen/ I'm insane at
crap/ Anemic partisan/ Panties in a cram/ Panic as raiment/ American P stain/ American pain St./
American in past/ An American tips/ An American pits/ An American spit/ An America pints/ Pants in
America/ Me, parasitic ann/ Priam, insane cat/ Me, I can strap Ian/ Cat pain remains/ Scar pain inmate/ C.I.A. trepans amin/ Am insane C.I.A. trap/ Am I a prince, Satan?/ Am in as a part/ Carnies paint
Ma/ I, anti-scrape man/ A sperm in a can it/ Man pities a narc/ Antic arm: a spine/ Rapt manna is ice/
Maniac rapes tin/ Meat is pain, narc/ Traipse inna mac/ Am Cartesian nip/ Amnesiac in tarp/ Scream
in patina/ Can't impair Sean/ A.I. as imanent CPR/ Cripes I am an ant/ Stamina pie narc/ Arsenic pita
man/ Spit in a can, Erma/ Inept, I am a racist/ I am a CSPAN retina/ Ant-crime Paisan/ Scan an irate
imp/ Manna pities arc/ I act in parmesan/ In a satanic perm/ In a car I am spent
Allan Maclnnis is a regular columnist for Discorder and a serious cinema aspirant. His nonfiction has
appeared or is forthcoming in Skyscraper, Razorcake, Nerve, Terminal City and This Magazine. Elizabeth
. Bachinsky is the author of two books of poetry, Curio: Grotesques and Satires from the Electronic Age, and
Home of Sudden Service, which was nominated for the Governor General's Award for Poetry in 2006. She
is a serious fan of cinema aspirants, h STRUT FRET
Penelope Mulligan
~~ To;
Bryce Dunn
Pi Theatre
Performance Works
Saturday November 4
Hot Loins, Live Girls, The Nons, The Mutators, The Clorox Girls
The theatre world has its own version of those clear-the-clutter types
who go round streamlining closets and lives in the name of clarity and
focus. They're called script doctors. It's a pity that Werewolves didn't encounter one at some point because author Teresa Lubkiewicz-Urbanowicz
seems to have crammed every idea she's ever had into the one bulging
play. Someone should have stopped her. The fact that no one did is especially unfortunate since there's still so much to admire in both the play
itself and Pi Theatre's production—but it needs room to breathe.
Set on a farm in Eastern Europe in what might be the 1930s,
Werewolves simmers with brutality, superstition and buried secrets. There
is also some superb comic writing and (here's to the production) some
beautifully realized characters. But they rattle around in what feels like
back-to-back episodes of a rustico-magic soap opera where scenic bombast is more important than narrative integrity. A feisty old woman waits
laconically for death, her volatile son behaves like the nastiest piece of
work this side of a Southern inbred, his niece and her betrothed struggle
to break free of the family quagmire, the dead arise to switch places with
the young, ghosts appear and wolves howl. No problem. It's just that the
plot thickens like overcooked custard and characters are introduced who
either go nowhere or are inappropriately lumbered with symbolism. The
trio of young men who crash a wake, for instance, look and behave like
urbane, vaguely threatening goths. Yet they are referred to as Wolfmen
and made to carry all the titular baggage. Time is also conveniently elastic:
From early early on, the son is loudly rumoured to have murdered his
siblings who are referred to as babes, yet his sister's ghost appears as a
young woman who exhibits a sexual attraction to one of the Wolfmen
who murdered her. But wait, didn't her brother do it? Oh, never mind. By
the time the house lights came up, the audience seemed baffled and weary
and it was only intermission.
The local company who mounted the piece intended it as a showcase
for emerging talent and as such, it worked very well, playing like a series
of widely varied scenes meaty with comedy, drama and character nuance.
It was a special joy to watch what actors did with secondary and minor
characters. Shauna Orlowsky, for example, played one of the widows at
the wake as a skinny little creature who said hardly a word but ate nonstop. It was impishly subtle. And Brian Sutton shone as an enthusiastically
nerdy neighbour who was not only a scream in his own right but actually
kept some dangerously ponderous scenes afloat. Under Tammy Isaacson's
attentive direction, everyone in the cast made sense of the moment, even
when connections to other moments were narratively tenuous.
Physically the production was a stunner. Jergus Michal Oprsal's set
whiffed of earth, wood and burlap. Though naturalistic, it merged with
Jeff Harrison's lighting to leave cracks through which other worlds Could
Although the playwright is a senior artist with a fair body of work in
radio and stage drama behind her, Werewolves could serve as a caution
to budding dramatists. Density and complexity good. Clutter bad. Don't
confuse them.
MD Theatre Coop
The Beaumont Studios
Saturday November 18
It would be hard to do a bad production of Romeo and Juliet. Such is
the universality and humanity of the Bard's work that the story can be
Last column of the year folks, and I'd like to take the opportunity
to pat myself on the back for all the great music I've been able to write
about, and for spreading the good gospel of the seven inch format to
you, the faithful readers. This time we reach in to the goodie bag and
pull out a trio of local releases and sneak in a current favourite band
that should not be strangers to fans of catchy pop everywhere.
Hot Loins launch our loins into spaz mode with two cuts of frenzied keyboard/guitar skronk that'll have you either cramming the
dance floor or running from it for fear of embarrassing yourself. Now
you're thinking, how are my sweet dance moves embarrassing? I kill it
every time I hit it...well Hot Loins will be the judge of that, thank you.
"Buzzkill" and "Reminiscent of the Admiration of a Graceful Lady" pop,
lock and body rock in all the wrong places, but you'll get their groove
after a few listens. On seafoam green vinyl, get yours while they're hot.
(The Broadway To Boundary, P.O. Box 21733-1424 Commercial Dr.
Vancouver B.C. V5L 3X0).
Next up a split seven inch between Live Girls and The Nons, both
of whom are relatively new to yours truly. I've seen The Nons play a
couple of times and liked what I saw. Simple but effective punk made
by members of other local acts The Mutators and The Riff Randells
that brings to mind Kleenex or The Slits. "Operators" relies on a
simple, choppy chord progression to bolster most of the song until its
shout and spell climax. "Not Dangerous" makes quick work of its riot
grrl-esque rant, catchy chorus and all. Any info I could gather on Live
Girls proved futile (Google yields a few million porno sites with those
search terms), so I'll venture to guess that this combo like their rock a
little darker than most, maybe Birthday Party meets Beehive and the
Barracudas? Whatever, I dig what I'm hearing. The Mutators give us
four tunes of noise punk with female vocals that are a little buried in
the mix at times. But perhaps that's the intended result, as the guitar
acts like a chainsaw ripping through the bash and smash of the drums;
imagine The Gossip if they turned down the blues and turned up the
distortion. Three originals and a cover of Black Flag's "My War" grace
their latest EP, so keep your peepers open for this one at their shows
'cuz their label (Grotesque Modern) doesn't offer much in the way of
Finally, The Clorox Girls wrap up this festive feature with a recent
7", a release that confirms these guys as one of my favourite bands of
the moment, and the poster-boys for the new wave of power pop. "Eva
Braun" tells the tale of the relationship between the Fuhrer and the
Fraulein by contorting the chords of "Mongoloid" by Devo. "In My
Mouth" is a hilarious song about the perils of pleasing your partner,
and "Walks the Streets" is a re-recorded version of a track from The
Clorox Girls' first LP. But what all these songs have in common is a
knack for hooks and melodies that'll stick in your head for days. Highly
recommended. (Burning Sensation Records, a Dutch label with little
contact info, sorry).
See you in 20071   j)
set almost any which way and still push buttons. Using a boy's Catholic
school as a framing device would, on one level, simply allow the play to be
performed as it originally was—with males in all the roles. But there are
plenty of contemporary implications in this take and under Jack Paterson' s
direction, Mad Duck Theatre has wisely let most of them arise unforced.
In Joe Colarco's adaptation, four schoolboys pull the book from its
hiding place and begin the role play which is obviously a clandestine pastime. From the off, there was no messing with the classical text, yet all the
shyness, exuberance and growing involvement came through as the lads
enacted the story scene by scene. Periodically, they would snap to attention and conjugate Latin verbs of recite ludicrous catechisms on the social
roles of men and women. This felt a bit unnecessary. The fact that they
were sneaking around in uniform suggested their repressive environment
clearly enough. It was Shakespeare's words that drove the show and, as
delivered by this company, every one made vibrant sense-clearly because
the actors were so physically connected to their characters. The lovers even
blushed visibly.
All four players shouldered multiple roles and navigated them with
astonishing seamlessness. Josh Drebit played the nurse as if she were a
pantomime dame (now there's an idea—I preferred his portrayal to that
of any female I've seen) but was solidly blokeish as Tybalt, while Omari
Newton, warm and fatherly as Friar Laurence, was a wonderfully imperious Lady Capulet without resorting to camp.
As R & J, Jason Emanuel and Daryl King were as touchingly odd a
match as many a couple at a school dance—she tall, slender and towering
over a stocky him. King played Juliet with a gentle grace that was quite
genderless and totally believable. His performance did more to kosh the
same-sex marriage debate for good than a thousand rants, and seemed
firmly rooted in a youthful desire to experience all sides to an equation.
The eagerness of all four boys to sink themselves empathically into the
roles booted the play's main message into relief, that any hope for an end
to war and prejudice must lie with youth. Juliet's "Tis but thy name that is
mine enemy" has as much relevance now as ever.
Al Frisk's starkly minimal set included a chain link fence which took
up half of the upstage wall. It was disturbingly ambiguous, suggesting a
prison-like atmosphere in which all manner of abuses can occur. Endlessly
topical, Shakespeare's R &J should do a tour of schools—both religious
and secular. *»
I Might Get Somewhere:
Oral Histories of
Immigration and
Amy Tan and the students at Balboa High School
826 Valencia
I picked up I Might Get Somewhere on my trip to San
Francisco in October. The Bay Area is a bibliophile's paradise. Not only do they have City Lights (best known as the
birthplace of Beat poetry), but each neighbourhood in
the city has a good handful of quality bookstores, secondhand and new. I could barely carry my book-laden bag on
my trip home.
I purchased this particular book from 826 Valencia,
both the name and the location of a non-profit educational society founded in 2002 by Dave Eggers, who
you may remember from such publications as Timothy
McSweeney's Quarterly Concern, Might magazine, and the
novels You Shall Know Our Vdocityl and A Heartbreaking
Work of Staggering Genius. It is a San Francisco Mission
District institution—from the front they have a store that
sells hoards of pirate paraphernalia and many of their
publications, and in the back they run a writing workshop
and tutoring centre for students from 8-18. Branches of
826 have opened in Chicago, NYC, Ann Arbor, Seattle,
and LA.
I Might Get Somewhere is a collection of 120-odd
"Oral histories of immigration and migration", each
around two to six pages long, "gathered, recorded, and
edited by students at Balboa High School, San Francisco".
The interviewees are friends and family of the students.
Each story was recorded and transcribed, and then often translated from its original language into English.
The result is a fascinating and overwhelming anthology
unlike anything I've read before. There is a considerable
number of histories from Filipino, Chinese, and Mexican
immigrants, but the book is wide-ranging. You hear stories from Cambodia and Vietnam, Peru and Brazil, Korea,
Iraq, El Salvador, Mississippi (there are actually quite a few
stories from blacks wanting to leave the racist American
South), Samoa, Honduras, Washington DC—and the
. list goes on. Each interview follows the same three-part
structure: the first part follows the homeland, the second
part details the journey, and the third part describes the
arrival and the experiences in San Francisco.
Because it's a book of transcripts, many of which
are translations, it's a completely different experience
than it would be to read a book of short essays on the
same subject. The language is uncomplicated and colloquial, and the subjects usually know their interviewers really well, so there's a familiarity there with the
audience. These people aren't writers. These are stories
of people with voices rarely heard, whether it be due to
barriers of language, culture, education, or income. San
Francisco is very similar to Vancouver, in that there's a
constant influx of new immigrants. The language barrier
is a major obstacle to really learning about our city and
the people who live in it.
I learned a lot about San Francisco in reading these
stories, because it's San Francisco as seen by outsiders
and newcomers, who inevitably notice things in the city
in a different way. Many people commented on their perceptions of the city before they moved there. Some imagined the Golden Gate Bridge, streetcars, and hills—the
San Francisco fed to us in books and movies. Others had
a vague idea of American cities, but not San Francisco in
particular. Others knew next to nothing about the Unite-
States, generally because they were very young when
they moved there. Hardly anybody who moved there had
an experience that was exactly as they'd expected.
The collective experiences of the storytellers are one
of the most interesting things about this book. I think
we tend to think of immigrant communities as cohesive
wholes—that all Chinese immigrants have the same perception of and relationship with Vancouver, or that all
Filipinos feel the same way about their own country. And
there are definitely some stories that are very similar: for
instance, there are a great many Mexican and Central
American immigrants who made their way across the
Mexican-American border with the help of coyotes, who
I didn't know much about before. A coyote is an expert
in illegal border-crossing. Prospective immigrants pay
them enormous amounts of money to provide them with
false identities (including sometimes giving the immigrant a makeover) and stories to tell the border guards.
Often, coyotes treat their "clients" very poorly—not
feeding them for days, or separating family members.
The separation of family members crossing the border
is extraordinarily common because it's apparently a lot
easier to get across alone than if you're with someone.
Many people didn't know if they'd ever see their children
or spouse again. And after reading many stories from the
same country, you begin to get a feel of what it might be
like. Many Filipinos missed the warm weather, the food,
and the friendly people in their home country. Most of the
stories from Cambodians were horrific and sad because
of the starvation and repression at home that they talk
about, and because they often feel as though it was only
by luck they actually survived. But by the time you're
nearing the end of the book, the stories that were bleeding together when you were in the middle start to separate
from one another again. You start to realize what diverse
places these people come from, because you read stories
from people from the same place who are of varying ages,
social and religious background, and family situations.
Some people can't wait to go back home, where everyone
is so much friendlier and the food and weather are better,
and it's easier to get a job—others totally love America
(you hear the word "opportunities" in almost every story)
and never want to go back home.
Because there are so many stories from so many different people, it is a difficult book to sit down and read
all at once. It's much better in doses of about 5 stories
at a time, because otherwise you start to mix up each
story. I wanted to be able to savour and understand each
person's individual experience and carefully compare
them in my head, but it quickly became a soup of details
and emotions and impressions. In that way, the book also
very much has the feel of any city. You begin to realize
just how many people there are, all living their own existences and with their own beliefs, ideas, dreams, and aspirations. I think that's why we forget about everyone out
there. There's just too much information for us to process
otherwise. This a book that's best to put down and pick up
again every couple of days, over a month or two, so you
can be properly acquainted with everyone in it.
You can visit 826 Valencia at their website:
Mario Carpenter
The Portable
Edited by Andy Brawn
unfairly stereotyped by this book, like in a survey course.
The quality fluctuates considerably as well, as the mundane details of certain stories fly by quickly, and drag in
the midst of narrative flaws. Overall, however, an irresistible humour shines through. Along with family relationships—both dysfunctional and otherwise—the authors
present the vagaries of life, and the shattering results
of the confrontation with economic realities. The funny
parts rely largely on irony, as in the contradictory descriptions of beautiful losers and lost travelers.
In terms of layout, beautiful appraisals and writerly
sketches are printed next to travelogues. Despite these incongruities, a First World lostness, mature in the fields of
angst, anxiety, and the possibility of ruin, runs through
many of the selections in this book. The 'zine aesthetic of
these pieces links The Portable Conundrum strongly to the
experimental kind of artistry on display on posters, pasted
on lampposts or wet and half-torn on building walls.
Conundrum Press has printed a host of chapbooks,
limited editions, and many other formats over the last
decade, but this book is the first time I've slid into any
of these artists' works. My overall impression is that of a
multi-layered community of artists, readily accessible (if
somewhat simplified) through this text. This collection is
definitely worth exploring.
Arthur Krumins
Inkstuds Year in Review
Top Hats and flappers, Old Jewish Comedians, I
Love Led Zeppelin, Shenzhen, Acme Novelty Library
There have been a plethora of great comics released
this year, but it's hard for me to fine tune a list of the best
of 2006. Publishers are expanding beyond their previous standards, and putting out some really innovative
books. On top of the standard output of excellence by
Fantagraphics and Drawn and Quarterly, this year saw
small publishers like Buenaventura Press, Top Shelf, and
Bodega join the fray with some incredible books of awe-
Covering a wide range of authors from the last ten
years of this publisher's existence, The Portable Conundrum
presents a selection of diverse forays into prose, poetry,
'zine art, and novel excerpts. While the variety is noteworthy, the 30 artists represented here are, at times,
Fantagraphics has made great use of their influx of
funds from the highly successful Peanuts archival collection. Releasing a combination of fantastic art books and
comics from old masters and new talent alike, the Seattle-
based imprint has cemented itself as the most important
publisher in comics today. Among their older works gaining exposure with new audiences is one of my favorite
books of the year. Top Hats and Flappers: The Art of Russell
Patterson. The gorgeous layout really complements the
Deco aesthetic of Patterson's work. The art hearkens back
to another time, but his sense of fashion is timeless, and
translates well today. The castaways of Project Runway
could learn a thing or two from the discerning taste on
display in Top Hats and Flappers.
Drew Freidman's new collection of art. Old Jewish
Comedians, is a slender hardbound series of portraits
that marks a great turn of styles for this celebrated artist. While his work typically relies on a very complex and
busy use of fine point inking, his latest collection uses a
different style to great effect. Freidman uses a smart wash
of muted colors, giving his subjects a certain caricatured
look that indicates his love for these vaudevillian greats.
Ellen Forney is one creator that I wasn't fully acquainted with until Fantagraphics put out a collection of
her work. Her fabulous compendium, I Love Led Zeppelin,
is a romp of collaboration with a crazy array of talents,
including Margaret Cho, Dan Savage, Camille Paglia and
6       DECEMBUARY 2006 ><^^^/
more. Ellen's work is an odd mix of sexuality, politics and
just fabulous art. She effectively uses thick, black inky
lines, showing a great understanding of cartooning and
making for a fabulous read.
Drawn and Quarterly has also continued to build on
their reputation for excellence. Following some great initial releases by top international talents, D&Q highlights
some of best of what comics can achieve. For example,
Yoshihiro Tatsumi's series of reprints of his seminal
work from the late 60s to early 70s are breakthroughs
in mature storytelling. Lovingly translated by Optic Nerve
author Adrian Tomine, Tatsumi's style has left an indelible mark on the genre, influencing everyone from Daniel
Clowes to Jonathon Bennett and much more. Abandon the
Old Tokyo is his latest collection, piecing together a sampling of dark, personal stories that stand apart in quality
from both historic and contemporary creators.
Another strong release from D & Q is the latest book
by animator Guy Delisle. With Shenzhen, Guy maintains his
rather profound ability to craft great stories with a beautiful style. With his primary work being in animation, Guy
keeps his distance from an easy cartooning style, employing a mix of what seems like pencil and charcoal to craft
his travelogue from China. His previous book, Pyongyang,
was a fascinating look into Stalinist North Korea, and he
doesn't disappoint with this follow-up.
The last piece of wonderment from the hallowed
halls of D & Q is the latest ACME Novelty Library by Chris
Ware, which shows why he continues to rank as a master
in the comics field. He crafts a story mixing the lives of
seven people, all slightly connected and each with their
own heartbreaking faults. Chris Ware is hands-down my
favourite creator, and this latest book reminds me why. He
may only put out something every couple of years, but
each book is well worth the wait.
If you want to check out more awesome comics,
check out your local comic store. Just remember to stay
away from anything that is about mutants or features men
wearing capes. And you can also listen to the Inkstuds
show, every Thursday at 2 pm on CiTR and available for
free downloads at www.crowncommission.com/inkstuds.
At the end of the December, I will be talking about these
books and many more in our special broadcast covering
the best comics of 2006.
Robin McConnell j)
Baby, It's Cold
by Quinn Omori
As I sit to compile the year-end edition of the Mixtape, Vancouver's in the midst of a large enough dump of snow to knock out power at Discorder's
headquarters at UBC, cause the city to descend into general chaos, and inspire the rest of the country—who are more than adept at dealing with a
Uttle frozen precipitation—to laugh at our ineptitude. By the time you read this, the atypical frosty wonderland that's emerged in Terminal City might have
already reverted to the usual mix of moderate chill and heavy rain. But in the current spirit of calling in sick to work, rear-ending someone in your summer
tire-clad car (or foolishly attempting to bike through the slush), and realizing that, no, you don't own an appropriate pair of boots, here's a mix for all things
winter. 'Tis the season, as they say.
1. Julie Doiron - Snow Falls in November
The best way to deal with inclement weather is to stay inside, and
this ode to hiding from 01' Man Winter is the musical equivalent of a
stoked fire, hot chocolate, and a warm body to cuddle up to.
2. Mirah-Make It Hot
If Julie's tune is a Uttle too PG-13 for you, you can always foUow Mirah
Yom Tov Zeitlyn's lead, and lock yourselves indoors and find other
ways to keep warm. "Make it hot/take me over and over and over."
3. Voxtrot - Warmest Part of the Winter
This song lilts along with a post-coital laziness, as Ramesh Srivastava's
soft croon is wrapped in blankets of reverb-laden instrumentation.
4. The Arcade Fire - Neighbourhood #1 (Tunnels)
We'll have to wait for global warming to kick up a notch before
there's any freak winter storms that produce enough snow to bury
any Vancouver neighbourhoods, but tunneling your way to someone
remains a pretty romantic gesture.
5. Saturday Looks Good to Me - Mistletoe
An ode to an age-old method of sneaking a quick snog, by a modern
day songsmith that filters his pop through the lenses of Phil Spector
and Brian Wilson.
6. Jenny Lewis with the Watson Twins - Fireplace
"Throw another log on the fireplace." Sounds good to me.
7. Belle and Sebastian - Winter Wooskie
If you've ever found yourself traipsing around on the slushy sidewalks—amongst the Ugg boots, faux-fur coats, and hats with way
too many pom-poms—and managed to lay eyes on someone who sent
your heart a-flutter, this one's for you.
8. The Hylo-oists - La Fin du Monde
A foot of snow falls and Vancouverites think it's the end of the world.
The Hylozoists provide an appropriate musical backing for the winter-
induced apocalypse, as keys warble and xylophones chime on a tune
that could soundtrack The Nightmare Before Christmas.
9. Elliott Smith - Angel in the Snow
This is one of my favourite songs, so I'll trot it out whenever it's even
vaguely appropriate. For this mix, it's a perfect fit.
10. Okkervil River - Listening to Otis Redding at Home During
Whether you're home or abroad, listening to Otis Redding is a tradition worth celebrating at Christmas (or otherwise).
Leonard Cohen writes some damn fine songs, but he's not the most
engaging singer in the world. Replaced by WiU Oldham's creaky timbre, Leonard's low warble gets one-upped on the cover version of one
of his tunes.
12. The Weakerthans - SUps and Tangles
John K. Samson weaves a modern day winter lament, and his band
clothes it in an old fashioned ragtime waltz.
13. Erlend Oye - Last Christmas (Wham! Cover)
There are dozens of takes on this song, and Erlend Oye's version might
be the only one that completely escapes the extreme unpleasantness
of the original.
14. The Smiths - Shoplifters of the World Unite
I spent a good portion of my youth working at a crappy music store in
a suburban mall, and every year around Christmas we would catch at
least one person carrying a "booster box" (which was usuaUy a bag,
rather than a box). If you line a shopping bag with enough tin foU it'll
block the signal from store alarms, and you can lift Nickelback and Ja
Rule CDs to your heart's content. Happy holidays, indeed!   w
11. Palace Songs - Winter Lady (Leonard Cohen c< tf:M_____i__*M_U
by David Ravensbergen
Home Taping Should've Killed the Record Industry
January 1988
Imagine a technology which allows you to record a song (studio quahty) at home, then pop a number
of dubs of it into the mall and send them to various friends all over the world, who puU off multiple dubs
themselves and send them to other friends who pull off other dubs, and so on and so on...and all with no
discernible loss in signal quality. Such is the nature of Digital Audio Tape (DAT) technology. CaU it evolution.
We all know what happens to dinosaurs.
WeU, unfortunately, some dinosaurs have managed to adapt, and have even infiltrated the upper
echelons of government to ensure their continued dominance of the planet. Okay, so I should have put
that first paragraph in quotes, but I want you to truly appreciate the fuU force of the innocence and hope
that gripped the imagination of Discorder writers back in January 1988. While DAT technology had already made lossless copying a reaUty, it is with a Utopian lilt that editor Bill Mullan imagines a worldwide
network of music fans, trading music with abandon (well, more Uke staring at their maUbox for weeks
waiting for the next set of dubs to arrive) and underrnining the hegemony of the recording industry. It's
hard to beheve that a mere decade later, Shawn Fanning would lay the groundwork for Napster, exploding
decades-old notions of copyright and music distribution. I don't want to succumb to the lure of temporal
prejudice, but it would be such a treat to return to the quaint days of 1988 and prophesy the coming of
P2P file-sharing to the awestruck masses.
God is an Overwhelming Responsibility
December 1987
Moving right along to the December 1987 issue, we find the magazine in a considerably less coherent
state. Rather than imagine the future of music, the folks of Discorder past undertook a Uttle amateur prophecy of their own, envisioning the impending end of traditional forms of rehgion. In the spirit of taking the
Christ out of Christmas, the issue maligns Christianity's blood-soaked history, before winding up in a hazy
account of the late Pope John Paul H's appearance at BC Place. "Amid the laser Ught and chemical smoke
splendor of Jesus Christ Superstar, the Pontiff burst suddenly from the centre of the stage and delivered his
vocals while flying about the stadium with a jet-pack strapped to his back." By all accounts it was the best
show of the year.
A few pages over, we find a fascinating precursor to Pastafarianism in the promotion of a Texas-based
faith: The Church of the Subgenius. Billed as "the only faith that promises action, thrills, success in sex
dd later take up
a gesture of protest against the
and business", this upstart church attracted
such high-profile names as David Byrne
and Pee-Wee Herman it its heyday, both of
whom are ordained ministers. Following the
teachings of "Bob", the grinning man with a
dapper haircut and a pipe dangling from his
mouth, devotees seek to attain total Slack.
Slack defies definition, and is posited as a
powerful force in opposition to the rest of the
world, which is "composed mostly of assholes." Linux Subgenius Patrick Volkerding,
this raUying cry, releasing his Slackware Linux distribution in 1993
"Mediocretins" (roughly translated as "Windows users") of the world.
The Monthly Controversy
"Decemburary" 2003/2004
Former editor Merek Cooper made a lovely final issue before departing for the UK, but he left a little
time bomb nestled in the masthead. His spelling of "Decemburary" has unleashed a torrent of speculation amongst the magazine staff. Preferring a more laconic pronunciation, I was initiaUy in favour of
"Decembruary", only to be chastised by the rest of the staff for my extra 'r'. "It's Decembuary," they insisted. Much disagreement ensued. FinaUy cowing to the superior numbers of my detractors, I was thrown
yet again into disarray by my discovery of Merek's unconventional spelling. While I'm sure this wiH strike
the average reader as inconsequential, it's been an issue of nuc-u-lear proportions around the Discorder
To wrap up this unspeakable month, I leave you with some words from "Bob":
Slack is the Aladdin's Lamp that opens the other five senses. It is the yardstick by which we should
measure ourselves. It is the only good reason to get out of bed in the morning, and if you don't beUeve that
you are surely lost in Perdition.
The Slack that can be described is not the true Slack!
Slack, in its cosmic sense, is that which remains when all that is not Slack is taken away. But Slack
is a trickster. It is unknowable, ineffable, unsearchable...hidden in revelation. Slack is neither created nor
destroyed. If you don't have it, it's somewhere it shouldn't be! Abstract until incomprehensibility, it is the
definitionless, insubstantial substance of the AU—the ISness of the BTLness.    j»
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and Georgia
Jancember 2007 Copyfight!
Canadian copyright law is
murky at best. Could Bev Oda's
changes make matters worse?
by Greg McMullen
Imagine: Your favourite band has just recorded
a new, critically acclaimed, Pitchfork-approved,
life-changing indie rock gem. Naturally, you want
to support their creative endeavours, so rather than
grabbing the album three weeks early on Soulseek,
you wait for it to be released in stores. You get home
from the shop, palms sweating with anticipation as
you tear off the ceUophane. After a couch-bound
evening of headphone bliss, you decide to copy the
album to your computer and put it on your iPod for
your morning commute. Congratulations—you
just illegally copied your legaUy purchased music.
What the heU gives? You did the Right Thing.
You paid for the music, and you even went to an
Indie record store to do it. Why are you suddenly
feeling Uke Harrison Ford in The Fugitive?
The answer comes from a closer look at how
music is sold in Canada. When you buy most
things, your ownership lets you do whatever you
want with it. Most people would eat their apple, but
if you choose to take photos of it, make it into a pie,
or charge admission to look at it, you're allowed to
do those things too. Music works a bit differently.
Buying a CD gives you a package of rights, but to do
other things you need to buy another Ucense for the
privilege. The music played by radio stations, played
at weddings, remixed by DJs, turned into cellphone
ringtones, or used for aerobics classes is all Ucensed
by the Canadian Copyright Board. To get permis
sion to use music for these activities you have to pay
a licensing fee to them, which they in turn give to
the proper copyright owners.
Making a mix CD or copying music to your
iPod are among the many uses of music not included in your Ucense when you buy it. These uses,
known as "private copying", require an additional
fee be paid to the Canadian Copyright Board. To
simplify matters, this shadowy board of copyright
enforcers collects a levy for every blank CD sold in
Canada, a fee that amounts to just over half the
price of the average blank CD. Whtfe there have
been concerns raised by people who will not be recording copyrighted material but have to pay the
levy all the same, the system does allow for legal
private copying.
Starting in 2003, the Copyright Board collected a similar private copying levy on iPods, that
was distributed to record companies who claimed
damages from file sharing. Retailers and customers alike hated the extra charge, and in December
2004 federal courts overturned the levy, saying it
was not allowed under the Copyright Act. Copying
music you paid for to your iPod became illegal, as
there was no means by which to obtain a private
copying Ucense. Strangely, freely downloading the
same music from a peer-to-peer network and putting it on your iPod is not Ulegal, thanks to the legal
grey area created by not entering into a licensing
agreement in the first place.
Do you foUow? If not, you're not alone.
Welcome to the weird and wacky world of Canadian
copyright law.
These strange discrepancies have not gone
unnoticed by copyright owners, device manufacturers, or concerned citizens. Copyright change
is afoot in Canada, and in the coming months
Heritage Minister Bev Oda will announce a plan for
revised legislation that should close loopholes and
result in a more coherent system.
Coherence doesn't necessarily mean good
news for music fans. The Honourable Minister Oda
has been accused of taking bribes from copyright
holders, largely ignoring the concerns of device
makers and consumers. If these stakeholders are
ignored, it is likely that the revised laws will be very
unfriendly to music fans. We might be stuck with
restricted music that will only play on certain devices. As is currently (he case in the United States,
removing the restrictions on music we've paid for
to play it on other machines, Uke an iPod or a car
stereo, could be a crime.
We've become used to paying to own a tiny
piece of a band in the form of an album, and the
music on it is only part of the enjoyment. Buying
music feels Uke buying a piece of the band, both as
a way of keeping their ideas and art close to you,
and as an indicator of your own impeccable taste.
To create this connection to the music we pay for,
we have to own music, not lease it. That means be
ing able to do what we want with it, be it sharing a
new band with a friend, bringing it with us to work
or school, and remixing it. Paying for the rights to
the same song more than once will not sit weU with
even the most committed of fans.
If restrictive copyright takes away the flexibU-
ity and ease of digital music, technological development wiU be crippled and an exciting avenue for
cultural creativity wiU be lost, in favour of protecting the sale of chunks of plastic. Ms. Oda should
keep this in mind while she sits planning how to
spend the recording industry's money.
Concerned about copyright in Canada? Here's how to
get in touch with Bev Oda:
Hon. Bev Oda
68 King Street East
Bowmanville, Ontario
L1C 3X2
Telephone: (905) 697-1699
Fax: (905) 697-1678
Email: Oda.B@parl.gc.ca
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Langley, B.C. • 604-530-8704 Best album to
debate about at any
metal bar / gig / record
In all my years as a music fan, I have
never seen a record received with either
such admiration or abhorrence as this
latest release by Dragonforce. A sextet from
all parts of the world, Dragonforce play anthemic galloping power-metal containing dueling guitar solos that make Yngwie Malmsteen
look Uke Burl Ives. Lyrical references rich with fire,
valleys, and mountains—and always having to fight,
cross, or climb them—make Inhuman Rampage the ultimate D&D soundtrack. But the argument always comes
down to this: are they questers or jesters?
Again we plow into the crypt of CDs, 7-inches and rekkids we here at
CiTR received over the last 12 months. I am literally up to my neck
in bins of recorded music as I type this, and someone has to go through it
all—namely, me. The following list is by no means representative of CiTR
programmers' tastes, just a reflection of what passed through my messy office and what passed through my jaded, bitter ears this year.
Best proof you're never too old to (indie) rock: Sonic Youth -
Rather Ripped - DGC Records
It took 'em 14 years, but the "Sassiest Band in America" finally released a platter of pure pop without a shred of irony. The opener,
"Reena", recalls an energetic Breeders-esque vocal (before the
crack—pun intended), "Incinerate" is Sebadoh at their self-deprecating zenith, and the harmonics on "Do You Believe in Rapture" recall
the naive art-skronk of Polvo. One of the best albums, not only for the
year, but for SY themselves.
Worst rendition of an already overplayed 112 song: Bank of
America/MBNA - "One"
Words cannot explain how horrible this is. Two bank CEOs changing
the lyrics to "One" to coincide with their recent merger: "One bank,
one card" etc. The worst of white corporate America. Don't take my
word for it; check it out on YouTube using "Bank of America - One"
as the search terms. It's a scene as cringe-worthy as anything on "The
Office." David Cross and Johnny Marr did a great rendition of it before
a Modest Mouse show.
Best "screw you" to the iPod Shuffle: Om - Conference of the
Birds - The Holy Mountain
Om are a fantastic bass 'n' drum (no, not the other way round) droner-
metal duo that broke away from their previous lethargic incarnation,
Sleep. Conference of the Birds is a slow dreamlike CD that lasts for two
glorious tracks exceeding 15 minutes each. Here's the kicker: they've
divided both songs into 45-second segments, leading to a 44-track CD
that foils downloaders and iPod Shufflers alike.
Album that best answers the question "Can I still like a band
even though they're total douchebags?": Don Caballero - World
Class Listening Problem - Relapse
Voted "the biggest assholes in rock" by more than one publication
during their heyday, Don CabaUero called it quits in 2001, putting an
end to the tension in their free yet studied progressive instrumental
jams. Why? WeU, not only could no one stand being in a room with
them, they found they hated each other as well. This year Don Cab
founder and drumming virtuoso (and asshoUo) Damon Che reformed
the band with some new young blood and produced a sound that is
more accessible than previous releases, but stiU snappy and rhythmic
with incredible time signatures.
Best argument against finding a cure for ADHD: Girl Talk -
Night Ripper - Illegal Art
With more than a hundred songs spUced together to form 41 minutes
of brilUance, Night Ripper from Girl Talk (Greg Gillis) proves once and
for all that yes, you can mix Wings' "Silly Love Songs" with 2 Live
Crew's "We Want Some Pussy". Those of you who turn your noses up
or ears off at the idea of "mashing" need not fret: Night Ripper is not
just two songs put together in a musically ironic or humorous way.
Instead the listener gets a 5-10 second blurb of sound and beats until
Gillis moves on to another schizophrenic jam. Kinda Uke a game of
"Name That Tune" on a pound of blow.
Worst band with the best hipster pick-up line: CSS - "Let's
Make Love and Listen to Death From Above" - Sub Pop
OK. It's not that bad a tune and they're pretty damn cute. But I'm
sorry, you Brazilian sexpots, your band has a shorter shelf life than
the cilantro at the IGA on 12th and Main.
Worst place to buy a condo in downtown Vancouver: apparently behind The Morrissey.
On May 18th of this year, The Morrissey Pub was host to the
Vancougar CD release party, with special guests The Ka-Nives from
Austin and local power-popsters The Tranzmittors. Vancougar were
brilliant and the Ka-Nives were chaotic, and by the time 10:30 roUed
around—minutes before the 'Mittors set—the cops were there to address a noise complaint made from the condos behind the bar. Look,
if one decides to Uve downtown one should learn to Uve with all the
perks, noise and all.
Best way to travel the world without going to the airport:
Various Artists - Radio Thailand: Transmissions from the
Tropical Kingdom - Sublime Frequencies
As their website states: "SUBLIME FREQUENCIES is a collective of
explorers dedicated to acquiring and exposing obscure sights and
sounds from modern and traditional urban and rural frontiers via film
and video, field recordings, radio and short wave transmissions, international folk and pop music, sound anomaUes, and other forms of
human and natural expression not documented sufficiently through
aU channels of academic research, the modern recording industry,
media, or corporate foundations. SUBLIME FREQUENCIES is focused
on an aesthetic of extra-geography and soulful experience inspired by
music and culture." This year's Radio Thailand release is no exception. The two-CD set invites the listener into a world where they are
not a tourist—more Uke a passerby that has stumbled across an audio
document of what a country sounds Uke. Snippets of radio station IDs,
news, music, and street noise make the Sublime Frequencies series a
must-own for any serious world music fan.
Best thing about being a Canadian Music Director: American
Record Reps
Me (on phone to rep): So you have your big Thanksgiving weekend
comin' up?
Rep: Yep. Don't you?
Me: No, we celebrate Thanksgiving in October in Canada.
Rep: Oh...Do you get along weekend in November?
Me: Yep. Remembrance Day. November 11th.
Rep: What? Veteran's Day?
Me: WeU, we call it Remembrance Day.
Rep: (long pause) But...Dude, Canada wasn't in Vietnam.
Worst thing to scream at a Wolf Eyes show:
"Can I get a 'fuck-yeah'?!" Yes. That was me.
I won't do it again. I promise,   j.
10    Decembuary 2006 VANCOUVER'S #1 NIGHTCLUB
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wil"  F**T l_P™        ^^* ~7=*t*Wl
by Tyler Mounteney
.Illustration by Alanna Scott
* SJflPlP^   «R;cp ___oGHW
Since the 1850s, when the Rock Island Line became the first continuous rail line connecting the
Mississippi River to Lake Michigan, the city of Rock Island has played an integral if unsung role in
the transport of both goods and people across America. Now, in an age when most choose to tour the
country in automobiles and get much of their information via the internet, Rock Island is home to one of
America's most unique and influential stopovers—Daytrotter. Bands on their way to and from the great
cities of the Midwest are invited to make a brief two-hour appearance at Futureappletree Studios, to record
four of their songs Uve off the floor—often using borrowed equipment—before piling into the van to finish
their journey to the next big city. Recently, I had the opportunity to speak with Daytrotter engineer Patrick
Stolley about the experience of recording these sessions and how it has affected his personal philosophy
towards recorded music.
Futureappletree, the studio where the Daytrotter sessions take place, is also home to Stolley's own
band The Marlboro Chorus, which has existed primarily as a recording project due to the personal circumstances of the members. As Stolley notes, "I/we do what we can
when we can, as we all have kids and wives and houses and jobs and all
that." When asked about the way his home base affects bands passing
through to record, Stolley suggests that bands coming in for a session
not only get to work in a comfortable environment, but also get to reap
the benefits of his incessant gear hunting. "I think just having all the
guitars, keyboards, pedals, amps, gizmos and recorders just feels like a
big toy shop for gear heads. Anything goes, really, as long as we have
time for it. The studio is fairly hodge-podge aesthetically, and smells like
smoke and dust. It's really comfortable and disarming. I try to see it
as others see it, and I think it feels laid back. I really love the room the
bands play in. It's a great-sounding, mellow space, and lends itself to
performance; almost every band has commented on that. It's great for
me, because the only thing I have ever done in there is sweep up, put
down some rugs, and paint the walls
"There have been so. many
times when I'm convinced
that what I've just. rec®ri»
ed sounds like crap and I
suck, only to listen back to
the tapes a week later anil
feel great about it J
When I asked Stolley about his experiences working with the sounds of many disparate bands, he
noted that "Every session has a positive side, and every one has a point where I'm going nuts. Sometimes
the bands really piss me off, but I choke it down and move on. Sometimes I'm just busy and pissy, and I snap
at Sean or the helper guys. Sometimes the bands seem to ask for the world, and I want to say no, but then
I have to just go, 'why not?' There have been so many times where I'm finally ready to record, and I hit the
buttons and the band just blows my mind, I can't even count them. There have been so many times when
I'm convinced that what I've just recorded sounds like crap and I suck, only to listen back to the tapes a
week later and feel great about it. It's a very weird and amazing thing to do. I can only say I'm grateful for
the experience."
Sean Moeller, the brainchild behind the Daytrotter phenomenon, must have seen in Stolley the flexibility and positivity which would be needed in order to successfully tackle such an intense project. Stolley
explains how the two of them hooked up to create what has quickly grown into a successful, innovative combination of online music journalism and recording. "When
[Sean] came home from school at the University of Iowa and started
doing music journalism, he interviewed me a few times and we hit it
off. Sean's dirty little secret is that he's a great songwriter (though
he'll probably never have the time to pursue that), and I offered to record some tracks for him at my studio. I played drums and some guitar
and stuff and he sang and played acoustic guitar and over the course
of six months we got eight songs together, which to this day are sitting
in my computer. He really dug the vibe of the studio and the way I do
things, so when he got the idea for Daytrotter, he approached me to do
the recordings."
For Stolley, the energy of the Daytrotter sessions is not only a
merit of their unique recording process, but is also shaped by the relationships struck up with the visiting musicians. He recalls a very early
session with the Donkeys and Casiotone which was extremely positive.
While the bands passing through have no doubt been influenced ,     "I don't know why, really, we just hit it off. We made friends right away,
by the space, the engineer has been equally impacted by the experience
of recording these itinerant musicians. When asked whether these sessions have changed his perception of
his studio, Stolley suggests that his "conception of recorded music in general has changed more." He goes
on to elaborate on his new outlook. "I have come to really appreciate good playing and arrangements more
than ever before. The idea of limitation is much more interesting to me now. I've always liked the 'commitment' of tape, but the commitment of two-track live mixing is really exciting. Since I've done Daytrotter,
when I go to do multi-track stuff I'm like: 'this should already be done! I have too many choices, help!',
which is how I felt when I did the first Daytrotter recordings, but now it's reversed."
and joked around about beating each other up. It was one of the first
times where I really felt like I 'got' the band, and felt like I was in the recording...like I made a big difference.
I listened to the tunes later and really loved them, and played them in my truck with the windows down and
wished I were just lazing in the sun with a beer and some pals and a fishing pole in my hand. I could see it,
and it was relevant to me. That goes way beyond the songs, I guess, but it just felt great."
Check out Daytrotter.com for quality m
your favourite bands. S
ic journalism, along with a weekly dose of two-track recordings by
12     Jancember 2006
r3-rirhyfvt.t#tr »CQB- ■ ** jluu uaiTD
I first met Evan Carleton on a winter tour in Edmonton, where he
saw and liked my band The WPP. Basically, right after he saw us he
put out our vinyl LP. When one is in a band, one tends to encounter
people that say many things and do nothing. Evan is the opposite. He
simply said, "Hey guys, I really like your band" and then did what he
said. A solid man. While the record deal was definitely a start, everything clicked for me when we drove into Edmonton in the snow and
found his house, where he introduced me to Arrested Development.
Humour is a great joiner of friendships, and from that point on I was
totally down. In terms of a musical aesthetic, Evan chooses bands for
his label Reluctant Recordings according to a localized sound. The last
time I saw him he was telling me there was a Vancouver or West Coast
sound of the current moment.5 At the time I didn't really see it, and
he rode away on his bike before I could find out more. I finally tracked
him down to get to the truth of the matter.
Discorder: How long has Reluctant existed?
Evan: Reluctant Recordings has been around since approximately
April 2004.
1 impressive roster of Canadian
How did you compile such
It's mostly due to the great friendships that I established way back in
the day with a tittle band, that I believe you are familiar with, called The
WPP. I was trying to book a mini-Alberta tour for The Franklins
and as luck would have it, The WPP was booking
same area for the same dates, so The Franklins ended
up playing two shows in Red Deer and Drayton
Valley with The WPP.
We got to talking and before I knew it
we were partying pretty hard and making
plans to release their critically acclaimed
full length He Has the Technology. Doing
that album kinda got my foot in the
door of Vancouver's burgeoning music
scene. The WPP recommended that Sean
Maxey (The Doers) should do some of his
art prints for their album; then I met The
Doers. The WPP also told me about Karen
Foster. What a great band!
For me, it just seems like the more great
bands you work with, the more great bands that
you find out about, and so it goes.
What do you look for in choosing what's good for your label?
Considering that half the bands in the back catalogue have broken up,
it would appear that I don't look hard enough into what's good for my
label [laughs]. Seriously, I try to look for a band that is fully committed to what they're doing, and does it with some form of integrity and
ingenuity. It also helps when a band has a unique sound or style.
Lots of bands these days are pretty transparent as far as just being a band for chicks, prestige, image or whatever, and have little more -
to bring to the musical table than rehashing music that has already
been written. Nothing bothers me more. I like to sign bands that are
forging new music with some passion and thought; for the most part,
I have accomplished that.
I hear you're helping Sean Maxey with some silk screening for
a show he's got. Why are you so nice?
I'm so nice to Sean cause he's so damn nice. I absolutely love his artwork. I always tell him that we're like two lost ships in the sea that
found each other, and that he's been definitely one of the best things
that has come out of doing this label thing. I've been working with
The Doers on their last LP (which also features a five-colour cover of
his artwork) and life couldn't be better.
Tell me about Sudbury's Varge!, one of the newer bands on the
You've never heard anything like them before. I've never been so
scared yet drawn into an album before I heard Must Lunge. It should
be in your stereo because there is no way I can describe how good they
are or what they sound like with words. I'm really fucking excited for
this one.
Do you get flack from elitist "punks" in Edmonton that tell you
you're not cool enough to have SNFU on your label?
No, surprisingly. I'm sure it goes on behind closed doors. No one has
said anything to my face.
Does anyone else help keep the Reluctant conglomerate afloat
from legal battles, smear campaigns, etc?
Yeah. There are definitely a few people, without whom I would have
given up on this a long time ago:
Nicole Journault: Girlfriend, emotional support, mental clarity
Ben Gallaher: Good friend, helps screening and just about anything
else I need help with, writes a lot of one sheets
Kenny Seldom: Bass for The Franklins, good friend, helps screening
and just about anything else I need help with
Matt Steringa: Definitely smear campaigns, one sheets, humour
If you were to view your roster as your children, who would
be your favourite? Who's the clumsy child? The ADD/OCD
child? The mean one?
The Franklins: Firstborn, much love
The WPP: Favourite child
SNFU: Strange adopted 35 year old son
Whitey Houston: Clumsy/party child
All Purpose Voltage Heroes: The effeminate
child you think may be gay and it doesn't
bother you at all
To the Teeth/To the Hilt: Smarty pants
Killer...Whales: Japanese hippie exchange
student who spent that one special winter
The Doers: The doer
Karen Foster: The schizophrenic one that
an see messages in the TV snow
You Say Party! We Say Die!: The kid that's
always away from home.
Fake Cops: The cool kid
Ghost House: The artsy talented kid
Varge!: The misunderstood/underestimated kid
Latest release?
Ghost House: Departures re-issue on LP/CD. This one is gonna be
sweet. Remastered and new artwork.
Varge!: Must Lunge re-issue on LP/CD. I think I've made myself clear
about this album.
To the Teeth/To the Hilt: new 7-song 12"/CDEP combo. Great new
stuff from this great band. Might be their last release.
Why do you put so much time and energy into putting out records on your label?
Because I love doing it ami love being able to work with such talented
bands without the mumbo-jumbo bullshit of labels concerned more
with image and marketing. I like the idea of making each release a
milestone both for the band and as an object that people might collect
or keep for years down the road. I like the idea that I make a batch of
records here in Edmonton and they end up quite literally all over the
world, and people that buy them seem to like them. I definitely like
everything I put out to have a certain aesthetic and feel to it. That
makes it all worth the stress and effort.
Art by Sean Maxey
*v* x*-
rw.retuctan_recordlngs.com S
DiSCORDER       13 beach house
by Saelan Twerdy
At this time of year, you want music to keep you warm. You want
to steep yourself in a blanket of cozy, hazy sound to lull away
Seasonal Affective Disorder, unclench your jaw, and efface the auditory aftershock of hearing car brakes sluice through rainwater-clogged
streets all day. You need a vacation. Why not pay a visit to Beach
House? This Baltimore duo (Victoria Legrand: organ and vocals; Alex
Scally: guitar) released their debut album just a few months ago on
Carpark records, and it's already been showered with so much praise
that you can count on seeing it on a good many Top Ten lists when
the year rolls to a close. At Pat's Pub on November 12th, the band exceeded already-high expectations by reducing the surprisingly packed
venue to a state of hushed awe with their immaculately atmospheric
dream-pop. Prior to getting on stage, however, Beach House was gracious enough to provide Discorder with an on-the-spot interview.
Are you...together, or just a band?
V: We're just a band. We're supposed to be, like, 'We won't tell you...
Alex Scally: Tabloid questionl
Discorder: So, have you guys done a large tour before?
Victoria Legrand: No, this is our first huge tour.
Were you just playing in Baltimore before?
I know. Terrible thing to lead off with. I think in Arthur's re-
V: Yeah, or playing in Philadelphia or NY. So this is our first major     view of your CD, they refer to you as lovebirds.
V: We could be lovebirds.
So you recorded the album in February, right? How long have     A: It's a state of mind.
you actually been playing music together?
V: We've been playing together for two and a half years, and v
been Beach House for a year and a half. Almost two years now.
I think they also suggested that you should grow a beard. You
seem to be following up on that.
14       DECEMBUARY 2006 1
A: Well, I HAD a beard!
V: And super long hair. He just chopped it all off.
A: I couldn't deal with it. It was always knotted at
the back.
Do you feel there's a lot of pressure to grow a
beard, in today's musical climate?
V: That was a funny tangent, that. I just think men
have so few things they can do with their physical
bodies. Girls can get their hair straightened, coloured, whatever. Guys can grow a beard. Or they
can shave a beard. Or they can have a moustache
or not have a moustache.
A: Also, I just didn't shave since we started tour.
What do you guys do when you're not playing
music? Do you go to school?
V: We're not at school. We have our jobs.
A: I do carpentry. It's a really good job.
V: I'm in thcservice industry.
The buzz for you guys has been building in a
really steady fashion. It's got to be nice to have
the positive review on Pitchfork. And I'm sure
by the time your tour is over you'U have a lot
more exposure.
"I just think men have so few
things they can do with their
physical bodies. Girls can get their
hair straightened, coloured,
whatever. Guys can grow a beard.
Or they can shave a beard. Or they
can have a moustache or not
have a moustache."
V: It'll be just in time to write more and then tour
again, possibly.
A: It's definitely more than we ever could have
asked for. I mean, it's our debut tour and we're
not with a bigger band. We expected it to be really
hard, and we've played a few pretty empty, rough
shows—that were still great! There were people
there that were awesome, and awesome to meet,
but this is incredible.
This show tonight, there wer
tickets available in advance...
V: I can still barely believe they're all here t<
You guys have an uncommonly fully-formed
aesthetic for a band who's just done their first
album and is on their debut tour.
You've been playing piano since you were
Uttle, right?
V: Yup, we both have.
A: I started piano when I was five, then I kinda quit
it for a while and got into less classical stuff when I
was about twelve.
What was the first music you were into?
V: As a child, I was really into classical music. And
musicals. I was really into old musicals, black and
white movies. I liked Kurt Weill and the Threepenny
Opera. I didn't really get into pop music until I was
in high school. My parents were really opposed to
pop culture. No New Kids on the Block.
Was it is a music thing? Did they want to keep
you in the classical world?
V: I think my mom was just trying to preserve my
childhood innocence. I think she was trying to cultivate the kind of situation where I would be able to
imagine a world uncontaminated by other people's
ideas at too much of an early age. Though I don't
think it was that thought out.
That's really nice. From the way you talk
about it, it sounds like you have a really good
relationship with your parents.
V: Well, my mother particularly is very supportive,
because she's very involved in the arts herself.
Carpark is doing this funny restructuring
thing too, because they used to be such an
electronic label.
A: It's all Baltimore now. They signed Ecstatic
Sunshine, and they have plans for multiple
Baltimore bands.
I remember when Ecstatic Sunshine's album
came into the store I work at and I saw it was
on Carpark, produced by Rusty Santos, so I
put it on and I was like, "Whoa!" Not what I
expected at all. Instrumental dual-guitar duelling.
V: We were mastered by Rusty Santos!
I didn't know that! That's great. What are
some other bands from Baltimore that people
should know about?
A: Arbouretum is a Baltimore band that's really
V: Dave Heumann is in that band and he's been doing stuff for way longer than us. He's played in the
Anomoanon as well.
A: There's a lot of other bands, too. A lot of little
bands. Thank You, is a band I like a lot. You'll probably hear something about them in the coming
V: War Dogs.
So how are you guys keeping busy on the road?
Do you have a pile of books?
A: There's no time! You're either just trying not to
be crazy, or trying to figure out how to get to where
you're going.
V: Nodding off, organizing the van, listening to a lot
of music. We have this one Daniel Johnston album
that we've been listening to over and over. We've
decided that's the kind of music we're most into,
where there's that level of purity where the person is just....[makes a whistling, falling noise and
a gesture signifying "gone"]. Montag's almost like
that to me. [Note: Montag was touring with Beach
House as their opening act.]
He seems very unselfconscious.
V: He 1st He's just pure happiness. He's a dreamer,
but not a self-destructive dreamer, which in the
art world, anywhere, that's usually what you get. I
don't see any destructive qualities in him at all.
How  did  you  guys  get  hooked  up  with     He seems very sweet.
A: After we recorded our record, we were sending it
around through various friends of ours. The head
of Carpark saw our show and got in touch with us.
We really liked him, because a lot of people really
try to get you into a long-term relationship, and we
were scared of that, because we didn't know anything about record labels. He wanted to do things
on an album-by-album basis, and that suited us
really well.
V: We'll see how it goes.
V: He glows! We met him at Pop Montreal.
A: He's really taken care of us.
V: He lives in a hobbit-housel
So what are you guys really digging right now,
just in general?
V: I like reggae. I always go back to reggae. Nirvana.
We both love the Breeders. We're really into the.
early 90s. It seems like such a colourful time.
Saturated colour.
cont'd Mr
DiSCORDER       IS I don't remember it that way at all.
V: Well, we're romanticizing it now, but looking back...
A: Tea. I never drank tea before. I'm way into it now.
V: Vitamin C. Um...I really wanted to watch Half-Baked the other night
and I didn't get to. And not that I haven't seen it before or anything...
I just wanted to watch something like that. I just want to sit down and
watch a stupid movie.
Okay, let's do favourite movies.
A: I realfy like this movie called Who's Singing Over There, this Eastern
European movie from the 70s. I also watched Hud the other night. It
was really good.
V: I love the Flaming Lips' Fearless Freaks documentary. I love that
movie so much. I think it is so entertaining. Also, the Townes van
Zandt movie, Be Here to Love Me, is totally heartbreaking.
A: And the Daniel Johnston movie.
V: It is incredible! I'm really into documentaries lately. I used to like romantic movies, like Wong Kar-Wai, but I don't know what happened.
I became one of the people that falls asleep during those movies.
I could really see you guys on a Wong Kar-Wai soundtrack.
V: I would love to see Beach House in a cinema somewhere.
To see someone else's idea of what they visualize when they
listen to our music would be really great.
That reminds me—those press photos you have—is that a
place you guys actually hang out? Because those photos are
awesome. They give such a good impression of what you sound
like. As soon as I saw them, I thought, "I'm going to hke this
V: Well, we would hang out there if it wasn't so far!
A: When we took those pictures, it was pretty cold.
V: But it actually was a perfect moment. With the sun coming up, and
the dress I was wearing that day...
I think that dress alone probably got you some fans. Beach House's self-titled debut is out now on Carpark. More info and
songs at www.myspace.com/beachhousemusic. w
V: I felt like Cinderella! I know Arthur mentioned the dress in their v
You guys make a point on your website of saying that you don't
use any drum machines. Are all your drum sounds made from
processed found sounds?
V: Well, they are electronic, in that they're recorded from a four-track
and put on to a CD. It's just that the sounds are taken from the organ
or we make them ourselves with bells and things.
A: But it is very different, in a very distinct way, from a drum machine.
A drum machine has this really contrived sort of sensibility about
it—which is really good for some things and really works—but if we
actually used a drum machine, it would change our music drastically.
It would be unrecognizable. That's why we make a point of it.
And it sounds really great. It's just that every review of your
album that I've read says "drum n
V: Or laptop.
A: I think it's just that there is
doing, rhythmically.
a obvious category for what w
So what do you play the sounds through, Uve?
A: We make them on tape, and we spend a lot of time making sure they
sound just right. The recording is a huge part of the process, which is
one of the reasons we don't want people to say "drum machine", because that means that the sound was dictated by a machine.
V: We're very specific about the way we want it to sound. It's about
two thirds of the whole songwriting process.
A: We're electronic only in the sense that we use a lot of electricity
when we play. On "Tokyo Witch", a lot of the texture is actual rain
sound, but we didn't record it so people would go and think, "Hey, it's
rain." It's not a signal to say "rain".
V: It just created a texture and we went with it.
16    Jancember 2007 PARENTAL ADVISORY
broke—our parents' listening ears pretty
well in high school. I started with Ministry,
Nirvana, and Mr. Bungle, and my brother
carried on the ear-bleeding legacy with White
Zombie, Deftones,
and Pantera. At that
age, your parents are
still coming to grips
with all the weird
shit you're into. The
word "why" is thrown
around  a lot.   "Why
St. Elsewhere
Danger  Mouse  and  Cee-Lo
have crafted a wonderful, old
time, R&B, soul album. Dressed
up and updated with hip hop and
electronica, this album should
appeal across generations, with
something to like, whether in
your teens or fifties.
The music is very danceable, and has good energy. At
the same time the writing is
full of an insightful, wry, sense
of humour, often with a dark
comment on life. Our favourites
are the humorous "The Boogie
Monster" and the classic-sounding "Crazy". Great vocals and
backup harmonies remind us of
the late night, commercial free
FM radio of the late sixties and
early seventies.
Although we enjoyed most
of the electronica we thought
that "Smiley Faces" didn't need
the Star Wars synth sounds. We
would have enjoyed a little more
interesting percussion and more
use of horns but this is stretching
to find anything to be critical of.
We anxiously await the next
collaboration between these two
innovative songwriters.
by David & Myrna Mounteney
parents of Tyler, contributor
parents-in-law of Alanna,
production manager
Tropicalia: A Brazilian Revolution in Sound
(Soul Jazz)
When I first started listening
to Tropicalia I was Immediately
drawn to the 1960s upbeat, pop
sound; white go-go boots, flower
power and day-glo colours. I imagined scenes from Austin Powers
or American Bandstand. But that
happy, silly emotion quickly gave
way to feelings of irritation and
impatience that the music would
soon finish! The melodies seemed
light and fairly simple, but as I listened more closer/ to the instrumentais, I soon realized each song
was comprised of multiple layers.
Obvious were the musical instruments; but also an innovative use
of electronic wizardry, as well as
voices meant to complement but
not in a lyrical sense.
Since the lyrics themselves
were not in English, I was forced
to think about which feelings
and images the songs invoked.
The third track, Gal Costa's
"Tuareg", had a Middle Eastern
flavour, so snake charmers and
crowded bazaars came to mind.
The fifth track, "Alfomega" by
Caetano Veloso, smacked of
Bob Dylan's distinctive intonation on the latter syllables. Track
16, "Panis et Circenses" by Os
Mutantes, took me to the parade of elephants coming into
the Big Top tent followed by jugglers and acrobats!
Such creative use of language
and music, in quality, tone and
timing, ended up being an innovative compilation of various
flavours—all palatable and most
certainly enjoyable. I would say
the only constant was the underlying '60s theme. Never have I
listened to a single CD that made
me think of a '60s music video, a
trip to India or visiting a circus all
in the same sixty-odd minutes!
I listened to this CD as "background" music while visiting
with friends who are professional
musicians—it certainty brought
on an interesting discussion! I
wondered what type of audience
it would attract. The singers'
voices sounded young, but why
would they have chosen this particular era to emulate? In summation, I would have to say that
Tropicalia provided as much entertainment as it did to stimulate
conversation and speculation.
by Kathy Carpenter
mother of Mario, copy editor
The Letting Go
(Drag City)
does he sound like [hilarious simile]," or "Why
are they so [hyperbolic adjective]?"
As we grow older, our parents come to terms
with what we're into. Sometimes they even start
listening to it themselves. Other times, they adopt
a more culturally relativistic approach, usually
attributed to that wide open space that's created
the day you're born, the generation gap. And often, our parents simply agree to disagree, and no
explanation is necessary. They've accepted
the fact that the world
is a mysterious place.
Not knowing what to expect
we listened to the CD The Letting
Go by Bonnie "Prince" BiUy with
anticipation and interest. Our
musical listening roots go back
to the '60s and the '70s. In listening to the CD we heard hints
of Bob Dylan and Donovan.
These artists also included storytelling, folk and ballad aspects
in their lyrics as does Bonnie
"Prince" Billy. The lead singer's
voice is very unique and raspy,
very suited to the slow lyrical
quality of the music he is producing. We found a Celtic influence with haunting tracks and
beautiful harmonies with the female vocalist. They are obviously
very talented and experienced
It was easy listening for us,
music we thought would suit
coffee houses or intimate concert
venues where the audience can
interact with the performer. The
writing is intelligent and mature.
We imagine that the artist has
a loyal fan base who are very
pleased with this new CD.
by Bryan and Suzanne Cobs
parents of Mehtnie, contributor
(Drag City)
When our son David asked us
if we would write a review on
a couple of albums, we had no
Ineffable phenomena occur every day—there
are some things reason cannot grasp. They take
it all in stride, because our elders are wise.
As year-end publications traditionally feature retrospective analyses of the year's offerings, it was from the
premise that our parents bring wisdom and
perspective that we
decided to have them
review some of 2006's
better albums for our
Jancember issue.
(Esperanza Plantation)
I thought that childbirth was the
most painful experience associated with my daughter. Enter
Colour Revolt.
The lead singer yells. Albeit
quite strongly and with emotion,
but the lead singer screams. At
times, his voice becomes hoarse.
Why does he scream? What is
he angry about? I attempted to
understand his sorrow and his
angst but I could not understand
the lyrics. Were they coherent
English sentences? The nurturing, problem-solving mother in
me wanted to help this young
man through his pain, so I examined the song titles.
"Blood in your Mouth", "Circus", "Homes are Graves"—now
I understand why these songs
made me feel hopeless. Perhaps
that was Colour Revolt's intention. If you're feeling too satisfied with life and you want to
come down, listen to this young
man sing.
The music, however, was
often melodic and soothing. If
one could press a button and
eliminate the screaming, you
can imagine having this music at
a low decibel and actually enjoying the record during an evening
of quiet reflection. Minus the
Overall, if you're looking to
carry out a random act of kindness, buy this record. Perhaps
then this young man and his
band will experience joy and
hopefully have it spill into their
next release. The instrumental
talent is already there!
by Rosa Rana
mother of Catherine,
ad manager
idea what a novel listening experience we were in for. The last
few days we have been playing
the fascinating and unusual
music of Joanna Newsom from
her album Ys and the intriguing and comforting music of M.
Ward from his album Post-War.
The artists remind us of music
and experiences of the past, and
have drawn us in with their new
contemporary sound.
Joanna Newsom's voice and
lyrics are like nothing we have
heard before. As the first song on
the album Ys started, we were reminded of the folk music of Joan
Baez, but it soon became apparent that this is no easy-listening, familiar music. Newsom's
unique, expressive voice fluctuates from smooth to intense-at
times sounding like the gentle
warbling of sparrows only to be
interjected by the squawks of
a stellar's jay-and surprised us
with unexpected variations and
squeaks. The stories in her songs
have images from fairytales and
the countryside, but the feel
of the album is more restless
than pastoral. The first time we
listened to the album we were
puzzled by the incredibly complex lyrics filled with allegory,
and found the unpredictable
twists in voice and narrative
rather jolting. We subsequently
were able to go with the flow,
and enjoy her voice, rhyme and
amazing poetic combinations of
words. We were enticed to consider various meanings. Joanna
skillfully plucks and strums the
harp and its mesmerizing beauty
complements her voice and lyrics very well. The accompanying
orchestra also enhances the contemplative mood of the album.
Newsom's unique voice, vivid
imagination and creativity were
compelling to us and evoked a
variety of feelings such as sadness and loss and also a sense of
beauty and mystery.
M. Ward's album Post-War
is unlike the album Ys, but we
found it to be equally engaging.
It was easier to listen to because
the songs are shorter and the
lyrics, though they have depth
and symbolism, are not as complicated as Newsom's. The tunes
and words make captivating and
catchy ballads. Ward's soothing
and mellow voice and the gentle
playing of his guitar feel reassuring and comforting. However,
he also takes surprising and energetic turns with his voice and
guitar. Other accompanying
instruments and voices added
special effects such as Beatles
sounds, a chugging train, and a
honky-tonk piano. We were reminded of Gordon Lightfoot,
Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash in
the songs, but it feels like Ward
is doing something new and
original, not copying. The overall tone of the album is upbeat
and hopeful even though the
topics he deals wioi such as war
and heartbreak are not easy or
lighthearted. The songs on this
album resonated with us and we
thoroughly enjoyed the music
and lyrics.
This listening and writing
experience has been enriching. It
has rekindled in us an interest in
exploring earlier folk, blues and
rock and has opened us up to the
possibility of finding other treasures in contemporary music.
Thank you David and Discorder.
Grace and Ray Ravensbergen
parents of David, editor
[Thanks for contributing, mom
and pop.-ed.]
(Car Park)
Beach House offers an unusual
and diverse mix of sounds, but
for these 53-year old ears, the
unsettling experiments in distortion and monotonous chord patterns prevented this album from
being musically memorable.
Distinctive melodies are important to our generation, and we
DiSCORDER       17 tunes that to our ear seem to be
going nowhere (which is much of
the music since vinyl returned).
That's why my wife and I had
some trouble listening to this CD,
in spite of the merits that appeared
more obvious on the second listen.
We became teenagers in the '60s.
We're used to verse, verse, chorus,
verse, chorus, bridge, and so on
for 9 9 % of what we listened to.
Victoria Legrand and Alex
Scally don't concern themselves
with this as they create their own
roaming song conventions on
Beach House. (Is that the name of
the band or the album?) I'd have to .
listen a few more times to identify
the patterns within each song, or if
they are consistent between songs.
Their typical approach is to build
the intensity of each song from
beginning to end, rather than a
chorus or bridge crescendo here
and there throughout. Each song
starts sparse and fairly vague, and
usually rises to a more moving fin-
The lyrics are consistently
cryptic, which is part of their
artistic appeal. But much of the
album sounded flat in terms of
feeling. I was never sure if I was
listening to a love song, social
commentary, personal philosophy
or what, but the general mood
was depressing.
I'm afraid the same generational gap applies to the melancholy sound. We're used to angry
sounds, loving or revolutionary
themes, dance tunes, etc. Beach
House reminded me of a Morrissey brand of slow whine, which
I just can't seem to acquire a taste
for. Next to the production (I'll get
to that later), this was what made
me question if I could ever listen
to it for pure enjoyment—in spite
of the brilliant but fleeting bridges
emerging from the often droning
At first it seemed like a simplicity reminiscent of Donovan's Gift
from a Flower to a Garden album.
Then I realized that Beach House
lacked Donovan's sing-along
quality, and had more complex
rhythms, less predictable structure—essentially a whole different take on simple melodies. Other
times the sound was nightclub-
esque, or had a fleeting country
feeling, while retaining its affect
of despair as a thematic musical
base, e.g. in "Heart and Lung".
Interwoven is a kind of BeUe &
Sebastian use of the pre-pubescent female voice, but with mellow
overtones. In the piece "Auburn
and Ivory", singer/lyricist Victoria
Legrand demonstrates her singing
versatility by sounding like KD
Lang in a brief bridge, then goes
right back to her girlish style mixed
with European diva singing in
English. She was also able to create
some skillful choral overlays, and
was adept at singing microtones—
those elusive little notes between
the semitones that most Western
ears consider out of tune.
There was great keyboarding
and slide guitar throughout, but
it took me halfway into the fifth
cut to appreciate this. I figure this
is because the first cuts weren't
nearly as strong as the later ones,
and each song started so simply.
Creative synthetic sounds were
used for effect, and almost all of
them had an acoustic instrument
base. This gave an impression
of comfortingly familiar instruments, but with a slight electronic
twist that never let you forget you
were listening to an enhanced
electronic sound.
The production varied from
stark to lush—at times far too
lush. For example, production values in the first cut were so vague,
it sounded more like mud than an
impressionist masterpiece.
I There was a 40-second silence
at the start of last song—a gratuitous piece without a name. I felt
it was unnecessary, as were the
acoustic distortions used in the
piece, as well as in "Saltwater"
and one other. It made our speakers sound like they had blown.
We're used to classical or Beatles
or Motown production values,
with sharp edges and fairly clean
sound. (OK, we also went to see
Jimi Hendrix and The Who, but
Beach House isn't rock.)
So put it this way. Beach House
should host another party of
mixed sounds to follow on their
Utile gathering of 8 pieces for
the debut album. But next time
we suggest they don't invite the
wanker who muddied up the production on this one, apparently
just for fun.
by Poppa Smurf
father of Julie, contributor
We Are the Pipettes
Memphis Industries
You can tell you're getting old
when you realize you started liking girl bands when they were old
enough to be your mother and
now you're old enough to be their
But the fragUe-feminine genre,
and its flip-side warrior-woman
version, just isn't evident in nearly
enough measure any more, unless
you count the lacquered stuff they
hurl at tweens after they conduct
focus groups on their hair streaking. Which is why, when my son
advised of a new British girl group
with a fresh take on the tradition,
I was ready and willing.
The Pipettes launch their album
by telling us they're "the prettiest
girls you've ever met" and smirk
their way through a dozen or so
derivations on the standard repertoire arising from the vulnerable
and vicious phases of wondrous
and wasted relationships. The production has a pre-computer feel,
which for many of this newspaper's
readers will be lost as a virtue,
but bears noting in this age of the
digitally-driven world of music. The
threesome borrow from Phil and
Ronnie Spector, from the Motown
and Stax labels, and from every
heartbroken, forlorn and betrayed
moment of true, true love. "Judy" is
a 21st century take on the rival girl,
"Pull Shapes" is a powerful clarion
call, and "Dirty Mind" is a witty
reminder of the way with words
only girls have. One of my favourite
albums of 2006.
by Kirk LaPointe
father of Mike, contributor *»
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by c. turions photo by Kirstie Shanley
Xiu Xiu played the
Anza Club this past
November in support of their
new album, The Air Force.
In between sips of honey
straight from the bottle, front
man Jamie Stewart told me
the following things sitting
cross-legged on the counter
of a basement washroom.
His presence so close to
mine was a charming affair.
He was exceedingly poUte,
not at aU the broken prick
he can make himsetf out
to be on this latest album.
Getting right to the point, I
asked him about the terrible
desires on display in his songwriting, and their effect on his ethics.
"Oh fuck. I've definitely been thinking about that. It's funny that
you should ask because that is largely what The Air Force is about. I've
certainly not been the best person, assuming a lot of things were clear
when I knew in my heart that they weren't, but I needed to justify
doing what I was wanting to do...not being considerate in any way
whatsoever to some people's feelings. I absolutely promised myseU not
to proceed down that path again. Now, I am so fucking lonely."
The Air Force is an album rife with soUtude. Stewart speaks its
name often enough, but loneliness is also there, woven between simple words with sinister meanings. The embarrassed child that I have
been sees again my skin with pimples in "Buzz Saw"'s admittance of
another's untouchable beauty. On "Save Me Save Me", I am reminded
of the painful struggle for acceptance in witnessing another's seU-
loathing. These coaxed remembrances are, as Xiu Xiu's music tends
to be, horrific. Familiar with the sound that they have made over the
course of five fuU-lengths, this newest album foUows suit—there are
still electronic sounds that make the listener physically uncomfortable, Stewart draws blood with his screams, and dissonant beUs ring
in the background. The introduction of Caralee McElroy's deUcate
lead vocals in "Hello from Eau Claire", and the nearly pop sensibility
of "Boy Soprano" make very convincing decoys to the darkness. I feel
guilty when I listen to the easily enjoyable sound of these songs, when
the words are terrifying and sad in a too familiar way. On their recent
Tu Mi Piaci EP, I feel that same discomfort when I listen to Xiu Xiu's
cover of The Pussycat Dolls' "Don't Cha". Where the original sounds
Uke fun, the cover makes me feel dirty. Very, very dirty. Considering
that Stewart has repeatedly stated his avoidance of fiction in his songwriting, I questioned his motivation.
"I just reatty Uke that song. There is this dance music station
in Oakland that is really good (it is the only unshitty thing about
Oakland), and the first mix of it I heard was a different mix than is on
the record. It's a reaUy dance-oriented mix, and it sounds Uke an old
house song. And I'm Uke, 'Oh my god, how did I never hear this song
before?' Then I realized, after I had heard it for six months and really
liked it, that it was actually just this totally fake, manufactured, major
label bullshit Spice Girls group. I'm Uke, 'Oh my god. How did this happen?' I was so confused. Then I heard the regular record mix, which
is really dumb and not anywhere as good as the house mix. But I still
reaUy enjoy it. I think partiaUy, what I was saying before, I was just in
a really sleazy mode, really, really sleazy mode, and I was interested in
that song a lot. It totally just made sense. I mean, I could relate to it
haU the time. Now I don't think I could, but when I recorded it, I was
Uke, 'Wow. I am absolutely doing this right now. That's really shitty.
But I'm stiU doing it and I don't care. I'm not that bothered by how
bad I am being.'"
Much of The Air Force feels Uke rumination with the critical eye
gazing back on itself, and as it is for most of us, this scrutiny decides
failure. Stewart's voice admits confusion and a desire for circumstances to be other than they are. With every album Xiu Xiu releases,
the Ustener must come to terms with uncompromising, heartbreaking honesty, and it's an uncomfortable process. Stewart sings, "Love
begins and love ends", but I question if he actually suffers from the
delusion that love lasts forever.
"No, I don't beUeve that. I mean, I'd Uke to. I haven't been in
love for a couple of years, and the last one really took it out of me.
But if I ever fall in love again I'm sure that will all go out the window.
It depends on if I continue on in my own state of being-in-love-ness
as to whether or not I beUeve love can last. Objectively, love changes,
but I don't think that it ever exists forever. I guess for a lot of people
what changes love is cohabiting, depending on each other and loving
The coDective eye of Xiu Xiu has a lot of material to gaze back on
from this North American tour, as the band members have engaged in
multiple acts of documentation. They are said to be making a documentary from collected tour footage. There has been an open invitation for fans to bring Polaroid film to shows, whereby the film will be
maUed back to them, exposed with images of Xiu Xiu and friends.
Members of the band—Stewart, McElroy, Ches Smith and tour manager David Horovitz—have kept a blog of the journey, complete with
photographic evidence
detailing, among many
other things, their rearrangement of a large theatre sign to read "GEORGE
Yeah. There is something
wrong with America and
it has something to do
with George W. According
to Stewart, the print of a
weeping Jesus Christ on
the cover of The Air Force
is a comment against the
right-wing usurpation of
Christianity as a tool for
the justification of kiU-
ing people in Iraq and
Afghanistan, among other places. Stewart is interested in reconfiguring that
"I consider myseU to
be Christian. I'm reUgious
and I grew up Christian
and my orientation toward religion is based in
Christianity. But I think
that hardcore Christians
would probably not necessarily think that I am. So
yes, I believe in god and it
is a big part of my life but
I don't think that you have
to be religious or beUeve
in god at all to have some
positive connection to the
universe or other people. I
don't think that if you're
not reUgious you're going
to heU, or anything Uke
When I consider be-
Uef in god, I cannot fathom it without the notion of surrender. Xiu Xiu's music seems to make
a similar demand upon the Ustener. There are what appear to be empty spaces. BeUef in god or faith in the music fills those empty spaces
with abundance. Xiu Xiu is particularly adept at the use of silence as
a musical tool. The opening note of Fabulous Muscles is followed by
six seconds of bated breath. Closing The Air Force, "The Wig Master"
leaves you aU alone for twelve seconds, when the song has barely just
begun. I asked Stewart if he sees parallels between silence and surrender as a musician.
"Silence is an aspect of music that is really interesting to me, and
that is a really beautiful way of flipping it around. I had never considered it Uke that, but I probably should. I'm always a Utile bit wary
of being too analytical of music generally, but that is an incredibly
interesting notion to consider, silence and surrender. It can also be the
opposite of that—it can be causing other things to surrender. I guess it
depends on where you are coming from with it."
Twice in a 24-hour period the awkward silence of "Wig Master"
made me weep. It had nothing to do with Xiu Xiu proper, other than
that somehow, the CD in my player was connected to them. But there
I was, having a very real emotional experience in response to a silence
that someone else had orchestrated.
"I think that's what... I don't know how to say this right. I think
that is what we are hoping for. We don't want an audience to make
any associations to us personally when they are listening. We want
them to make their own connections. Hopefully we are writing about
real experiences and that allows people to have some connection with
it, and not that it has anything to do with us at all."     w
DiSCORDER       23 SWA
by Allan Maclnnis
photo by Alanna Scott
recent convert to his writing: it's direct, funny, sharply observed, and
filled with memorable characters and true-to-life situations. hls novels
also contain more than their share of grimness, since his characters,
though compassionately drawn, are often crackheads and junkies and
hookers, a vast panorama of the defeated, downtrodden, and pissed-off,
struggling to survive in the bleak surrounds of the downtown eastside. i
interviewed chris by email shortly after the book launch for his newest
novel, Welfare Wednesdays.
24    Jancember 2007
Discorder: It took me a long time to get around to actually reading one of your books, and I've met other
people who say the same thing—they've seen you at gigs, they've picked up your books at stores, and they *
Just haven't gotten around to you yet.
Chris: The words "self-published" are enough to put most people oft They assume that if a writer isn't good enough to
find a publisher then his/her work is better left unread. Mostly, they're right. At first, I played the game but after getting
two books dropped at the last minute, I decided to go it alone. It seemed that I was spending as much time trying to get
published as I was writing. I gave up and that was when a publisher approached me about Punk Rules OK. When that
book was finally published a year and a half later I realized that, other than give me a phony air of respectability, there chris waiter
was nothing a small press could do for me that I couldn't do myself. I
like having complete control over the finished product, too.
Is it working out? I mean, is Gofuckyerself prospering, or is it
still a struggle with an uncertain future that you're keeping
alive with your own blood, sweat, and money?
GFY Press is sustainable but at a marginal level. It's a tight squeeze
to get the bills and the rent paid, and I wouldn't wish this life on a
weUare recipient. That said, GFY has never operated in the red, and
business is growing at a steady rate. Things are not as grim as they
were a year ago. The print runs grow with each new book, and we
continue to re-edit the old titles as we re-print. Many of those titles are
on third or fourth runs and we have increased the numbers as well.
I Was a Punk Before You Were a Punk still sells well even though it has
been out for several years. East Van and Boozecan continue to sell at a
steady rate, and Mosquitoes & Whisky and Kaboom are the sleepers in
the bunch.
The DIY spirit of it is pretty cool. Is it a venture you'd recommend to others?
Anyone can do this, provided they are willing to invest fourteen-hour
days including weekends. If I had known how much work this was
going to be, I probably never would have started.
What's your distribution like?
I seU the books at fourteen or fifteen locations in Vancouver, but I only
have one or two stores in each city across Canada. I stiU run into a lot
of snobbery and that's why I named my publishing company what I
When did you start writing?
I started writing in '98 when I was convinced that I wouldn't Uve
much longer. I was shooting a lot of coke and OD'd on heroin twice
that year. It seemed that my whole life had been a waste and I felt a
need to show something for it. I wrote Beer in pencil on irregular cardboard that my girlfriend stole from work. My mom in Winnipeg typed
it up and sent it back. My girlfriend printed it one-sided on 8.5 X 11
paper and we bound them with ring coil. Even this meagre book was
very difficult to make under the circumstances. I sold the first copy
(excluding friends) to a skater kid at China Creek. The book was very
simple but I liked the way it turned out. Since I was still alive, I wrote
another book that didn't turn out, and then I wrote Punk Rules OK
which was published by Burn Books in 2002. My girlftiend bought me
a hot laptop for $100 but I used it for collateral with my dope dealer
most of the time. Then, in January 2000, the shit hit the fan and I
found myself homeless, shooting dope in a hotel room on the DTES.
I went to detox and then to a recovery house where I stayed for five
months before moving back with my girlfriend andour newborn baby.
It was very scary at first because we were new parents: I was afraid I
might relapse and we were broke. We got past that but we stUl Uve in
the same two-bedroom apartment in East Van. Still, I'm very grateful
to do what I do and I wouldn't trade it for anything.
I'm curious if you've read Hubert Selby Jr, or if you have other
writers you like...?
I'm embarrassed to admit that I've never read Last Exit to Brooklyn.
I've always meant to but still haven't found time. Bukowski has always been a huge influence, and Irvine Welsh came later. They spoke
Have any highbrow literary reviews taken notice of your work?      They're quite scary books at times, though, <
I operate in a vacuum and only my fans know I exist. Occasionally I
get a review in a music magazine (such as Discorder), but newspapers
and weeklies such as the Georgia Straight completely ignore me. I'm
used to it. Fuck 'em.
I don't know if the theme of getting clean runs through more
than one of your books—it's pretty important to East Van. I
assume that a lot of what Dill feels and experiences is based
on your own life. Was NA useful?
The characters in East Van, Uke all my other books, are composites
of people I know or have known. I'U have been clean for six years on
January 14th. I still attend my weekly NA meeting, but I'm not sure if
I really "get" the program. I have a problem with the "Higher Power"
concept. It seems too simplistic to beUeve that faith wiH keep me clean.
I need to be honest, humble, and to have respect in order to Uve a
healthy lifestyle. I learned the value of those things from NA, and I
like the support as well. I'd rather write and be with my family than
use puddle water to shoot drugs behind dumpsters, but crazily, the
idea still holds a dark attraction. I'U always be an addict and I can't
afford to forget that.
Do you have a following on the Downtown Eastside?
I don't really know how much of a fan base I have on the DTES, only
that my books instantly disappear from the Carnegie Library whenever I donate them. DERA [Downtown Eastside Resident's Association]
has helped me but I haven't returned the favour. I've been toying with
the idea of reading at Carnegie Library for years but haven't gotten
around to it. More than a few people have told me that I'm an inspiration, but that always sounds so weird. Me, an inspiration? I'm just a
grouchy old dude who writes books.
Probably a lot of Discorder readers are coming from a more
affluent, comfortable background and stay clear of the DTES.
What should people be doing to help with life there?
Hell, I avoid the DTES mostly. I go to punk shows there once in a whUe
and I like the banana cream pie at the Ovaltine Cafe, but unless you're
working there or you use drugs, there isn't a good reason to hang
around. I was on East Hastings today and I saw syringe caps in the
grass that had been there so long the orange colour was almost white.
No one wants to pick that shit up. I saw sharps disposals in the alleys and piles of human excrement in doorways. I saw people who are
NOT HAVING FUN. The province and the city should make wetfare
easier to get and they should raise the rates. They must realize that the
homeless cost them more than wetfare does, so why do they continue
to wage war on the poor? Not only have they made welfare almost impossible to collect but they are systematically destroying places for the
homeless to sleep. From the boulders under the ledge of the Georgia
Viaduct to the fences under bridges, they are making fife tougher for
those who need the most help. This makes me very angry.
Do you have any problems with the idea of reasonably comfortable people, who don't have the problems that people in
the DTES face, consuming your books in a sort of voyeuristic
I don't have a problem with "reasonably comfortable people who
consume my books in a voyeuristic sort of way" because it is an op-
I hope my books scare people. I want them to see that if we don't open
our eyes, this problem is only going to get worse. Also, junkies are just
plain old more fun to write about than normal people.
What's the deal about a Telefilm deal with Boozecan? Any directors or actors that you're interested in working with or
who have approached you?
I have signed movie options for Punk Rules OK and Boozecan. Punk
Rules OK has already received development money from Telefilm but
they haven't finished the screenplay. An industry guy in Toronto
named Mark Sanders and I have already written the screenplay for
Boozecan but we're still waiting to see if Telefilm wiH fund the movie.
These projects have been crawling forward at a snail's pace for more
than a year, but pretty much anything could snuff them out. I reaHy
Uke the screenplay for Boozecan so it'd be cool if it actuaHy was made.
I'm not very knowledgeable about the Canadian movie industry but
I guess I'U keep learning as these things move along. I've already
learned that everything takes forever.
Any other projects on the go?
The next GFY book, Shouts from the Gutter, which is a coUection of
short stories from 1998 to 2006, wiU be out in May. After that, I'U do
another novel caHed Rock & Roll Heart. Say, do you think this story wiH
help my sales at the UBC Bookstore?   S
fiIsd rattier write audi be with my family
ifcan use puddle water to shoot drugs
behind dumpsters, but crazily, fhe idea
still holds a dark attraction-"
to me and they were real. I dislike pretentious Uterary bullshit and
want nothing to do with awards, contests, writer's committees, or
even with other writers. I'm a high school dropout and I don't have
anything in common with them. I wish there were more writers who
didn't come from privUeged backgrounds. We need more writers from
the streets and the alleys.
me aipAiaaxd doge
portunity for me to show them something most of them haven't seen
before. Perhaps I can shed a Uttle Ught onto the subject of addiction
and people won't hate addicts so unreasonably. There is a story behind every junkie and some of those stories would break your fucking
heart. I just want to portray addicts as real people, not as zombies who
would stab your mom for a fix.
Discorder     25 SHINDIG
by Chris-a-riffic
Stupid Joanna Newsom. She plays in town at St. Andrew's-Wesley
Church on December 5th. When do you suppose the Shindig finals
are? Crap. I say this not so much for the audience, who wiH be torn in
their choice of one show over the other, but more for the poor finalists.
At press time, The Choir Practice and The Organ Trail are your
2006 Shindig finalists, and more than half of them have tickets to the
Newsom. I have tickets (and I'm going to wear a suit for the first time
in a decade! Don't ask me why), and host Ben Lai probably has tickets.
But I must say that regardless of the interference of the world's loveliest harpist, I am quite excited for these finals. Whoever comes out the
The Choir Practice
Photo by Walker
winner of the third semi-finals on November 28th, whether it be the
technical, rhythmic assault of Fond of Tigers, the pop bombast of
Better Friends than Lovers or the songwriting prowess of Victoria,
Victoria (if we can find them), this wiU be a wonderful showcase of
very different styles and sounds.
The bands this year were all unique, and a lot of them were
very off-putting. I loved them for that. The band that fit that description especially weU were night five competitors, Two Apple Tobacco.
They drove me as far as I could go upon hearing them for the first
time. That's usually a good thing for me. If it takes a while to appreciate a band's sound, it's been proven that I will Uke them better in the
long run. They sounded Uke a cross between The Molestics and Les
Georges Leningrad. They put quite an emphasis on the sounds of
ragtime and old tunes of yore, and. then they beat on it for a good
while. In the end, though, they lost out to pop outfit Jump + Dash.
One of the more intriguing aspects of Shindig 2006 thus far
has been the use of spectacle, with a couple groups in particular putting on quite a performance. Two such bands were Car 67 and The
Huge Manatease. Car 67, who I've seen before, competed against
The Bloggers and Victoria, Victoria. They walked out on stage in
police and nurse costumes, and featured bewildered CiTR DJ Gavin
Walker playing an inspiring saxophone solo. They eventuaUy lost out
to Victoria, Victoria, but just barely. The scores were completely tied,
but V,V had more first place points than the male/female duo. (And
just a note about the Bloggers, who I failed to see. Four different people
have come up to me, praising the Bloggers' snotty garage rock and
chastising me for going to the Love is All show at Pat's Pub instead. I
urge you to see the Bloggers. Their MySpace songs sound pretty good.)
Aiming for a cult member aesthetic, the Huge Manatease were a sight
as well, although they looked more Uke wonderfully styled hippies to
me. Their stream of consciousness songs about getting hand cancer
and sasquatches were fun and the whole crowd quite enjoyed it. Fond
of Tigers beat them on night nine.
One of the bands I was intent on seeing, after hearing a lot about
them, was the young rock band known as The Penguins. A few years
ago, they were interviewed by Nardwuar, and they looked Uke they
were barely in their teens. They're stiU reaUy young, but they're pretty
talented kids. After hearing them play an Alter Bridge cover and
generaUy laying out some nice radio rock riffs, I was thinking of how
good a band they could be if they would just broaden their listening
horizons a Uttle. They had to wait outside the doors of the RaUway
Club to hear that Jump + Dash beat them by a single point.
For future bands entering Shindig, I would Uke to make a suggestion. This year everyone sent their demo in CD form, except for
one—that band was a shoo-in to play Shindig. The female blues duo,
The Pack, was the only group to send us a tape, and we lapped it up.
They got in and took it from there with their traditional approach to
the blues form. I was floored by how true to the blues they were for
such a young group. They got to the semi-finals.
One of my favourite performances was by Terrorbird, a female
soloist who competed in Shindig a couple years back as part of the aH-
female four-piece Automatic Fancy. Her songs were really dark and
compelling. She lost in the first round, but it was a great effort. Also
losing in the first round was the two-piece It's a Living Thing. Their
songs take a whHe to appreciate, but they reaUy have some nicely polished tunes. Lover Lover Lover beat them in round one, but sadly
broke up days later after their victory. This gave It's a Living Thing
some momentum into semi-finals #1, where they faced Vancouver
transplant D. Trevlon and heavy favourites, The Choir Practice. It's
a Living Thing's semi-final performance was so good—people danced,
and no one ever does that at Shindig. The Choir Practice eventuaUy
won that round, but there were some rumblings that It's a Living
Thing played good enough to get to the finals.
Ah, yes. The finals. This will be interesting. Our first confirmed
finalists are the one guitar, many-voice onslaught of the Choir
Practice. I saw them before Shindig and really liked them. Their songs
are so darn catchy, their harmonies are so wonderful and their similar
attire is pleasing to the eyes. The Organ Trail won the second semifinals. I find them the oddest of all the bands for some reason. They
sound Uke bluegrass, Appalachian folk music and indie rock all mixed
together. They just added a secret weapon in the form of a pedal steel
guitar player, and it really complements their sound. The winner of
the third semi-finals has yet to be named, but it's a toss between Better
Friends than Lovers, Fond of Tigers, and Victoria, Victoria. And if you
can drag yourself away from church, the finals promise to be one heU
of an entertaining show, ft
26     Decembuary 20061 THE WIN
by Adrian, Tyr & Todd
We played eighteen shows in seventeen days—go figure. We
played at punk bars, record stores, anarchist book stores, house
parties, university cafeterias, jazz clubs and art spaces. We shared the
stage with top 40 bar-bands, pre-teen grangers, post-punk artschool
kids, Christian rockers, and Quebecois fusion artists. We added ten
thousand ldlometers to the purple minivan.
Tyr: Touring across Canada has been described by many bands I've
spoken to in the last few years as useless and boring. But after spending the last few months selling aH our furniture and throwing away
aH our possessions, it came as a perfect way to unwind and have an
adventure with friends.
Todd: I spent the night before our fareweU show putting up posters
on Main Street until 3am instead of packing. I've had so much bad
luck putting on shows in Vancouver in the past so I went aU out. It was
so worth it—I hugged more people at the show than ever before.
Tyr: It hadn't really hit me as much as it hit everyone else that
we were never coming back to Vancouver. I was
so excited to leave that I wasn't at all sad but more    0
freaked out at how much I needed to do before we hit    _f
the road in 5 hours. I had a line up of people after we
played waiting for hugs.
they "Uke pencils" instead; one guy at the back reluctantly raised his black bear rug. Tyr thought the place was haunted. I definitely felt
hand. We drove 7 hours to Lethbridge but no one was there, so Tim a ghostly presence, so I danced with the bear rag to calm my band
and Adrian played a free jazz set. mates.
Todd: Calgary is the dance capital of Canada.
Adrian: When we got there, they had already blown up baUoons
and were wearing birthday hats and masks. The Ughts went down
as the film The Party played behind us on a screen. Can-can dancing,
moshing, confetti and crowd surfing. Boys kissing boys. A pinata was
beaten to death mid-show.
The next day we went to the wave pool and had a basketball game
in the waves. Todd+Tyr beat Tim+Adrian by one point. Then off to
Tubby Dog for lunch, where we ate ginger and wasabi hot dogs and
watched Degrassi Junior High. Tim left his underwear at home so we
went into a gay fetish store to buy him a fresh pair. They made Tim
take a catalogue fuU of porn, which somehow made it aU the way
to Saskatoon with us. Our second Calgary show had an audience of
about 5 that danced with us for 3 hours after the show was over.
In Medicine Hat we played in the antler room at the Moose Lodge.
Todd broke his toe rocking out on stage for the hundreds of preteens.
After playing for three hours to a single table of
fans in a semi-empty bar, a bunch of German ski
bums came into the bar. Adrian invited them up during an improvised song and they pounded the drums
for an extended version of the Prince of WaUs song, "Questions for
We had the next night off in Edmonton so we gave our friend Jerf
a private show in his Hying room all night. He taught Todd how to
shotgun a beer.
The next day we played in the cafeteria at the University of Alberta
in Edmonton. It's hard to get people to listen while they eat their lunch.
After listening to Busy Bee in the car, Todd toldTim and Adrian to play
some hip hop jams while shouting to the audience to "put their hands
in the air if they Uke sex". No one put their hands up, so he asked if
Afterwards, kids came up to us and said, "That was the best show I've
ever seenl" or "Thank you so much for coming here, we don't get anything like this in Medicine Hat!"
Tyr: The
i Saskatoon has reaHy good floors for t
Adrian: Thunder Bay was a hoot. We played a place called the
Apollo, which is run by two Greek women: a mother and a daughter.
They cooked us a big meal of chicken fingers and files. Afterwards,
they put us up in rooms above the bar. Amongst the dozens of empty
rooms, there was a foot massager, a pool table, a kitchen and even a
' House shows are always so much fun. Our host Jeff Woods set up
a canopy of baUoons (that got ripped down during "Guitar Swing"),
gave us fireworks and mystified/disgusted us by magicaHy pulling
thread through his neck. His house had a bunch of theme rooms
(plant room, pirate room, fish tank room) with speakers broadcasting
the concert going on in the Uving room.
That night we slept where we played, covered in confetti, baUoons
and streamers.
Todd: People in Toronto were reaUy happy that I stiH drank my gin
and tonic even though there was a handful of confetti in it.
Tyr: In Hamilton we played this bar ftul of teenagers and women
who had been recently released from jaU. I know this because I overheard two women talking in the bathroom about how they needed to
avoid starting a fight, since they had just got out of prison. The problem, apparently, was that they wanted to punch this
guy in the face because he kept pulling it out, but
they decided that they should just get the heU out of
there since they didn't want to go back to ja_.
Tyr: When we arrived in Montreal there was a
taxidermy art show where we were supposed to be
Adrian: The final show...new and old friends
— alike. On our final song, I pounded my floor torn
into submission. I actually tried to break the skin Uke puncturing an
eardrum; I was so excited, and I couldn't decide whether to launch
the stick into the crowd or hug my band mates instead. Tim blew up
the big firework we got from the magician's house and then off he
went, our flying sax-playing Dutchman, driving the rental van back
to Vancouver. The band was now %, and at 9:30am the next morning I said goodbye to Todd and Tyr, and left with just a backpack for
Quebec City.
Currently, Tyr & Todd reside in Montreal with new Winks members on drums, violin and keyboards. Birthday Party was released
on Ache Records on November 14th and a new EP is already in the
Por more tour photos and video visit wwmthewinks.com   S
by Allan Maclnnis
Photos by Laura Russell
Visitors to Vancouver might get the impression that Vancouverites are a cold and uncaring bunch. Addicted, mentally ill, and obviously miserable people-also Vancouverites-are
to be found everywhere, begging on the street and sleeping in doorways, while more than a few
of their warmly-dressed "superiors" brush by them, pretending not to see, seeming more defensive than compassionate. Montreal's Efrim Menuck was wont to comment from the stage, when
A Silver Mt. Zion played here last, that the level of poverty on display in our city was "shocking".
As an ESL teacher, I've had a student ask me, with genuine confusion in her voice, "Don't people
here care?" It's an embarrassing question and hard to answer without sounding like I'm making excuses. I'm grateful that there are organizations like the Portland Hotel Society that I can
point to at such times, to illustrate that, in fact, some Vancouverites do care, and are organizing
to make a positive difference in the lives of our least fortunate.
The Portland Hotel Society, founded in 1991, is the name given
to an organization that manages a number of buildings and projects
in the Downtown Eastside, providing inexpensive social housing for
the "hardest of the hard to house" in our city; they also help with the
DTES Life Skills Centre and the neighbourhood's safe injection site.
The PHS has won the support of many East Vancouverites, including
an unusually high percentage of artists and musicians. One of these
is Brian "Wimpy Roy" Goble, onetime DOA bassist and founding member of the seminal Vancouver punk band the Subhumans. Brian has
worked in home support for the Portland Hotel Society for six years.
"The PHS has an incredibly high tolerance for people who would
be out on the street normally," Goble tells me by phone. "We house
them and clean up after them if we have to, and try to get them hooked
up with medical services and things Uke that. The home support workers go right into their rooms, you know. Some of them are in pretty
rough shape." Along with occasional assaults, infected needles are a
reality that home support staff have to face, making this a job that
requires some degree of commitment, compassion, and caution, and,
as Brian affirms, has a high burnout rate.
128    Jancember 2007 Goble's new song, "People of the Plague," on the Subhumans'
New Dark Age Parade, is a pointed look at the problem of homelessness.
As Brian admits, it's "a bit tongue-in-cheek": He refers to our homeless as akin to zombies staggering off a theatre screen, "coming to a
neighbourhood near you / the mutated creations of the problems we
didn't face." Goble considers bandmate Gerry Hannah's song, "World
at War", a more serious treatment of the issue, though he sticks by his
lyrics; Humour has often been a hallmark of Goble's songwriting, and
there is no question as to whose side he is on.
One of the senior staff at the PHS, Tanya Fader, is weU aware
of Brian's stature in the Vancouver punk scene; she snules when I
ask what working with Goble is Uke. "Brian's Brian! He's a nice guy,
he's a hard worker, and he does it without saying very much. He's not
Mr. Punk Rocker whUe he's at work!" Fader is currently the Program
Director for the PHS Supported Independent Living Program, funded
in partnership with the Health Board and BC Housing. A new program, SIL was designed last spring by Fader and others at the Portland
to help people in recovery "get on their feet and feel safe," as they
make the transition from the structured and supported environment
of recovery homes to Uving in the community. Supported Independent
Living staff provide "support outreach for eighteen months, doing
weekly visits to cUents' apartments, trying to help them get back to
work, back to school," and helping them make connections outside the
drug-using and recovery communities. "It's something there hasn't
traditionaUy been much of. Usually people have been in a recovery
home, that's great, you did awesome, you finished our program, and
out you go-and your life is exactly the same as when you went in, except that you've been recovered for a few months." Meeting the needs
of those in recovery, and helping people on the path to recovery, is an
important part of the Portland Hotel Society's strategy, though they
don't try to pressure anyone to quit using; it rarely, if ever, works.
Supported Independent Living is just one program of the many
that the PHS manage. Their main agenda is providing stable housing for people, at whatever point a person is at their Uves. "Whether
they're using drugs, mentaUy HI, HIV positive or living with AIDS,
or in recovery, it's meeting them where they're at and trying to create a sense of safety and stabiUty, this would be impossible without
stable housing." Tenancy in PHS buildings is based as much as possible on need: people who have been evicted from everywhere else can
stiU find a home at the Portland, where there is a no eviction poUcy.
"Sometimes that means if somebody's violent, we have to press charges," Fader says matter-of-factly. "It's not Uke there's no consequence
to that behaviour, but it's their
home. They're given a chance to
come back and try again."
The Ust of other local musicians who have worked at the
PHS or its related projects is huge,
including Matt and Kevin from
Blood Meridian, Gabe Mantle of
Gob, and members of the Gay and
the Bughouse Five. Tanya can't
begin to do justice to the list,
which also includes poets, writers, painters, and filmmakers. "I
think when people lead a creative
lifestyle themselves, they understand what it's Uke to be outside
of normal society a bit. You feel
Uke a bit of a freak yourself, right,
so it's not really that big a step to
say, -'Hey, you know...' None of
us are really that different from
one another; it doesn't matter
what your walk of life is. I think
that artistic people sometimes
see that a Uttle more easily."
Artists can tend to be an idealistic lot and worJsing at the Portland
can be a crash-course in reaUsm. "You have to accept the fact that you
can't actually save people. You can help them, in whatever way that
means-whether it's making sure they eat that day, or take their medication that day, or that week or that month or that year, or making
sure they get the medical care that they need, or the mental health
care that they need. But you can't decide for people how their lives are
going to go or what decisions they're going to make. You can do your
best to decrease the harm that society does to them and that they may
do to themselves, but at the end of the day, you can't save people. You
have to let go of that."
Despite the darker side of the job, dealing with the fact that we
live in a society that simply discards certain people, Tanya emphasizes
that it's very rewarding work. "You get a lot of love back, and you
have your days when people are just so grateful for what you do for
them. Sometimes just making somebody laugh or smHe during the
day can be a huge thing, and gaining their trust is a huge thing as
weU. All of those things are very rewarding. I think that's why we all
keep doing it, and because we know it's the right thing to look after
people and to help them where they're at."
Another local artist who has been a long-time supporter of the
PHS is painter Richard Tetrault. A Strathcona resident, Tetrault to
taught drawing classes at the Carnegie Centre. He also worked on
some of the murals in the Downtown Eastside, in collaboration with
members of the Portland Hotel Society, and had a show, Visualizing
the Downtown Eastside, at the Inter-Urban art gaUery.The Inter-Urban
is one of the projects the Portland Hotel Society oversees. "The PHS
have got pretty good insight into the workings of the Downtown
Eastside, obviously," Tetrault says. "They're out there fighting a lot of
these issues on the street level, and I have a lot of respect for them. It
takes people on the ground level to reaUy be able to make the decisions
that are going to be effective in the long run. Our government doesn't
reaHy have their finger on the pulse in the same way." Tetrault's work
can be viewed at www.richard-tetrault.ca.
Local musician Katie Ormiston-lead singer and songwriter for
the band Pawnshop Diamond, also felt a strong desire to support the
PHS from the moment she heard about them, when Tanya Fader gave
an information session at Ormiston's workplace. "She spoke about the
conditions people are Uving in, the issue of untreated mental illness
and the continuing decline of safe, affordable homes. The talk made
me think of those famiUar faces in my neighbourhood that tip their hat
to me, ask for change and stiU smHe back at me so forgivingly when I
apologize and keep walking. To be honest, I rarely dig into my pockets
for that spare change. It's not that I don't care or don't want to help so
much as I feel overwhelmed by their need and fear my money going to
something that is destructive to them."
Katie was also reminded, of her own famUy; her brother's mental Ulness had "a powerful impact" on her chUdhood and adolescence.
"Watching him struggle through what must have been such a scary
and uncontrollable process was difficult. He was my big brother, the
guy who bought me Pink Floyd tapes for Christmas and made me
watch hockey all the time. I thought he was so cool. Then, one day,
I was in the hospital whUe he was committing himself. We were in
the waiting room and I looked around and saw people sliding away
from him nervously. In fact, a nurse came and took the two of us to
a tiny, white room to wait. It was obvious to me he was being hidden
from the pubUc and that made me so sad. He was still my brother and
he was still cool. He just couldn't fit into our society's idea of how
we should be. Even treated, he couldn't keep a day job and therefore
he couldn't pay for his Uving needs or prescription drugs without assistance from his community. When I moved to East Vancouver from
Victoria and I started coming face to face with the homeless on the
"It takes people on the ground level to really
be able to make the decisions that are going
to be effective in the long run. Our government
doesn't really have their finger on the pulse in
the same way."
streets, I recognized my brother's struggle in some of their eyes. These
are good people in desperate situations. They need their community
to support them through hard times and to help them find their place
among us."
Ormiston, along with feUow Pawnshop Diamond member Nina
Fleming and local songwriter Jessie Turner, began organizing the
Black Crow Project as a constructive way of spreading awareness
about the Portland Hotel Society and raising funds for them. The
project involves both a CD and a benefit concert. Held on November
2 7th, it featured a silent auction for original works of Tetrault's, Black
Crow Project cover artist Arleigh Wood and others, and performances
by a host of local musicians, including Pawnshop Diamond, the Blue
Island Trio, Jess HiU, Parlour Steps, and Sarah MacDougall. All these
artists wiH appear on the CD, and 100% of the proceeds wUl go to the
PHS; it also features a spoken word piece from C.R. Avery and songs
by Corbin Murdoch, Veda HU1, and Po'Girl. The songs are mostly
dark, folky, alt-rock/country numbers, connected by the presence of
crows. Katie explains that, Uke crows, the homeless "share this community with us. We see them everyday and yet don't see them. They
go unloved and unnoticed but at the same time affect our Uves. We are
just too scared and uncomfortable to take the time to acknowledge it.
Another connection with the crows is how at the end of the day they
come together to fly home. Oddly enough, there was an article on the -
front page of the Vancouver Sun recently talking about how the crows
will soon be homeless as their roost is being destroyed by a Costco and
Tim Hortons. How ironic and sad."
Though the tone of several songs on the CD is somewhat somber,
there is humour and joy too, provided in part by East Van resident
Mark Berube. Berube Uves north of Hastings-"right in the -hood,"
he chuckles. A long term veteran of fundraisers, he also played at the
benefit, and contributed the song "Third Storey Window", written
specificaUy for the CD after Katie suggested the crow theme to him.
"Crows can be quite dark, symboUcaUy, so I wanted to try something
a Uttle different. The song is about a bunch of crows that are being
voyeurs, looking at a couple having sex in the bedroom. It's kinda Uke
the idea that crows are nature's paparazzi."
I asked Berube if he thought that there was in fact a stronger
sense of community in East Van than in other parts of Vancouver. "I
think, yeah. It has a lot to do with the income. You go to Shaughnessey
and it's aU these Uttle fortresses, so it comes down to plain geography
and physical features in your neighbourhood: big walls, big shrubs,
the idea of reaUy trying to be isolated." East Vancouver is a very different matter. "I ride my bike to work every day, and I see the sex trade
workers on the street, the same ones, and you say good morning and
they say good morning. It's this very surreal sort of community at
times, but it reaUy makes sense. You can't avoid it here."
I was able to interview one Portland Hotel Society resident who
has Uved in the Downtown Eastside all her life. MoUy, a young part-
First Nations woman ("also ItaUan, Irish, Aquarius, and a monkey,"
she giggles) works as a hostess at the Inter-Urban Art GaUery, greeting people and providing some background on the exhibits. Now 26,
MoHy had origmaUy Uved with her mother in an apartment on Main
Street. When her maternal grandmother died, MoUy teUs me, her
mother, who had problems with heroin, "had a little bit of a mental
breakdown and just kind of lost herself there for awhHe. I was a teenager on the street on Granville during that time and that was actuaHy
a lot more comforting. It was kind of better than being at home, because there was no one there for awhile." Soon both were evicted from
the Main Street location, and MoUy's mother took up residence at the'
first PHS building, where she received the support necessary to get on
a methadone program. MoUy Uved at the VanCity Place for Youth during this time, but in 2000, she and her mother got apartments right
across the haH from each other in the new PHS location, which they
share with their two cats, Princess and Marley—Uke Bob Marley, MoUy
explains. She and her mother keep their doors open so the cats can
pass freely between their apartments.
Some tenants of the current PHS complain about the security measures in the new building across from the Army & Navy on
Hastings. Unlike the Portland Hotel Society's various renovated projects, it was purpose-built to house difficult tenants, and can seem
somewhat restrictive. But compared to the old bunding, Molly teUs me,
"The security is way better. I feel much safer now, actuaHy. You have to
have ID to come in. There's a videotape in the elevators and they can
stop the elevator if the person isn't supposed to come up. It sucks too,
sometimes, but that's okay-because I'm a little bit younger than most
people here, I guess, so most of my friends are Uke, -'What! It's so hard
to get in!'" Tanya had explained to me previously that the city had just
voted unanimously to provide the final piece of the funding puzzle for
renovating the old bunding, the old Pennsylvania Hotel, and improve
security and the quaUty of rooms. The renovated building wiH provide
"44 self-contained units with kitchens and bathrooms."
I asked MoUy about some of the services avaUable at the new
Portland. "There's, like, art workshops and writing Workshops, there's
gardening, and there's cooking and hairdressing so people keep their
hygiene better and stuff. There's a nutritionist who weighs you and
keeps track of how your health is, which is reaUy kinda cool." She is
somewhat amused when I mention that some readers might find the
Downtown Eastside a bit of a scary place, since she's Uved there aH her
fife. "The art world part of it is part of why I don't think it's that scary,
I guess. Like, most gaUeries in the area try to get community involve-
in different art things and stuff. I've noticed from working in the art
gaUery that you see the talents in a lot of people that probably would
have been scary, if you'd met them some other way."
I asked MoUy about the advice she'd give to more affluent members of Vancouver's social strata who want to feel like they are making
a positive difference in the Uves of the people they see on the streets.
"Just kind of get to know people, Listening is good-listen to people's
stories, just kind of sincerely listen and understand people's stories,
even if they're not the same as yours."
People wishing to contribute in a more concrete way are encouraged to make cheques payable to the PHS Community Services Society.
The address is 20 West Hastings, Vancouver, BC, V6B lG6-mention the
Black Crow Project and/or Discorder. Sponsors will receive charitable tax
The Black Crow Project CD is available at Red Cat, Highlife, and other
local record stores, (www.myspace.com/blackcrowproject) w
DiSCORDER       219 Photo by Blythe Dresser
November 4
UBC SUB Ballroom
"Who the fuck plays the recorder?" The question
belongs to Islands' front-man Nick Diamonds, and
as it goes out to the crowd in UBC's SUB ballroom, a
wicked grin crosses his face. The answer, of course,
is his band, and Diamonds is right smitten about it.
Cutting across the ghost-white stage makeup, his
ruby-red Ups curl up at both ends. The Ughts draw
out the lines in his face, and whUe he looks fresh out
of a Batman comic, this Joker is well-intentioned.
His eyes flash a youthful enthusiasm; he's genuinely
enamoured with 'the music'.
This kind of joyous energy permeates the entire
show. EarUer, opener Giovanni "Subtitle" Marks—
aptly named, if only for the speed at which he
flows—accompanied himself on the iPod, skipping
through sections of songs he thought too boring,
and pausing to play a few Sonic Youth interludes
during which he simply struck a pose. Was it a lack
of professionaUsm? In some ways, yes, but there was
a personal honesty to it that redeemed the experience.
Marks stumbled awkwardly through audience
interaction, but it came off fresh. "I hope I leave the
stage having taught you something," he said, "but
I'm not sure what." (Primarily: Cigarettes are bad,
and so is jail-time.) When he returns to the stage
during Islands' set, to join them on the psychedeUc
"Where There's a Will, There's a Whalebone", he
and Diamonds laughingly snap shots of each other
on digital cameras. It's the kind of keen, childish
joie de vivre echoed in Islands tunes Uke "Jogging
Gorgeous Summer" and "Don't CaU Me Whitney,
Bobby." And it works, to a point, but it's hard not
to eventuaUy get the impression that Diamonds has
had a bit too much of his own Kool-Aid.
"This song is called Bucky Little Wing," he says,
and the crowd cheers wUdly. He laughs. "You have
no idea what that [title] means. It's okay, I get it. You
cheer 'cause it's a good song. I could fart and wonderful music would come out." And it gets worse.
Halfway through "Rough Gem", the last song before
they make their first of two exits, the keyboard cuts
out. Diamonds begins pounding the keys furiously,
but his effort is in vain. Seething with rage, it looks as
if his eyes are tearing up. He quickly turns his back
on the audience. The song ends without so much as
a "thank you" or "good night". He leaves the stage
in a huff, kicking over his guitar stand on the way
out, and the band foUows him off awkwardly. Half
the crowd seems too love-drunk on the tropical Islands Kool-Aid to even notice the tantrum.
And so, youthful charms aside, it would seem
Nick Diamonds has some serious growing up to do.
Lucky for him—with an aU-ages crowd in which the
high school emo kids nearly outnumbered the UB-
sCenesters—so does his audience.
Justin Morissette
November 4
Neumos, Seattle
Prior to tonight's headUner, we were required to
endure the glitchy, thumpy house styles of Techgno-
sis and some DJ chap whose name I don't remember
(apologies for this poor standard of journalism!).
Both acts started off quite interestingly, but it all
rapidly descended into a dirge of beats and bleeps.
The only memorable thing about either performance was the sight of one half of the duo Tech-
; looking inordinately excited with pressing
buttons on his laptop and mixer. I only wish I could
share his enthusiasm. Frank Black at the Commodore, November 12
Photo by Greg McMullen
Julie Dorion at Richard's, November 2nd Photo by Alanna Scott
Thankfully, the tedium of the support acts became a long-forgotten memory once Jamie Lidell hit
the stage. Boasting a strong charisma and charm,
he exuded a confidence that was fully justified. Beginning his set with "Game For Fools", he immediately dazzled the gathered throng with his powerful
and soulful voice. Straight afterward, he went into
an extended rendition of "The City". Here he built
layer after layer of beatboxing and voice, creating
an improvised version of the song barer/ recognizable from the album version. Absolutory brilUant.
It's truly amazing how Lidell manages to be so engaging when all he has is ins voice and a bank of
synthesizers and samplers at his disposal. Perhaps
it would be slightly churlish to suggest that Lidell's
performance tonight wasn't quite as inspired as his
show at the Commodore Ballroom back in Jury, but
it is true. Nevertheless, even when he's not on top
form, he stiU gives a very entertaining display of a
precocious talent that was sure to leave a lasting
impressions on this appreciative Seattle crowd.
November 8
NOISE! And yet somehow not loud enough.
Raven Strain and Sick Llama both proved to
be deserving openers. Sick Llama definitely won
me over with his restrained yet aggressively dense
sound. However, there was more than enough
intervening time to get some local harsh noise talent on stage. Like any other McBean-fearing Van-
couverite I recognize the greatness of the Black
Mountain Army; however, hearing their tunes
between sets wasn't greatly adding to my experience. It would have been no thing to get THE
RITA, whose quaUty has been attested to by a lick
of Thurston Moore's Bull Tongue, or any number
of harshed-out acts (Uke anything Masa Anzai
has a hand in, Taskmaster, or Sick Buildings,
to name a few) that inhabit the Vancouver sewers.
There were a lot of people out to see Wolf Eyes that
I'm sure don't know of the harshness that dwells
in the heart of Vancouver's yoga-pants-wearing casual Friday exterior. It could have been an exceUent
time to flaunt our filth. I suppose it remains the lot
of the Vancouver artist to wallow in local obscurity,
having to gain recognition from the 'outside', at
which point the peasantry will take note. If you are
so inclined and have yet to do so, check out a local
noise show. The least pretentious genre I know of
and rarely more than a $5 cover. This pubUc service
announcement is now over.
Wolf Eyes came and commanded that awkward
stage at Pat's. They were more of a "band" then I
was anticipating, playing actual "songs" rather
than meandering noise-jams. Say what you wiU
about their drunken tomfoolery, but they are amazing at what they do and they clearly love doing it. I
don't even think the crowd minded much that after
missing last call the band demanded beer from the
audience in order to keep playing. Twice. I have
a feeling that the ultimatum was legit. Wolf Eyes
NEED to be in altered states to channel the black
vomit-that they hurl at the audience. I did find a
few things about the show to distract me from my
reception of hue and holocaust-filth. First and foremost, Pat's Pub, I beg you, LOUDER. Appreciate
that the audience has come to prostrate themselves
in front of the stage to be sacrificed by the rightful
heirs to Throbbing Gristle. Let us be sacrificed.
Secondly, digital cameras, please, take your tourism elsewhere. No matter how many times you
randomly point and shoot in the general direction
of the stage your picture wiU suck. Please give up,
release and enjoy.
Caroline Walker
November 10
Croatian Cultural Centre
I hadn't seen Misery Signals play since they got
their new singer, and although I miss Jesse Zaraska
as their front man, replacement Karl Schubach
does a fair job of filling his shoes. I would have liked
to hear more of their old material, but considering
the personal content of Zaraska's lyrics, I would
understand if that was the reason they were lacking in that department. Schubach has potential;
his hopeful screams filled the near-empty Croatian
Cultural Center and were ringing in my ears for
hours after the show. Like most hardcore, the music is a sort of organized chaos, and they pounded
out gut-wrenching note after note. Unfortunately
the mosh pit was weak—the crowd didn't seem to
know or care what they were doing. I was very disappointed.
Between the Buried and Me put on the best
show of the night. They were quite boring visually,
but musically they were mind-blowing. Tommy
Rogers has the most spectacularly diverse vocal
ability, ranging from high-pitched shrieks to guttural growls. He even sang his way through a cover
of Queen's "Bicycle Race" with near perfect pitch
and sense of harmony. I would still expect quite a
bit more movement and action out of a band with
their talent; they were unbelievably tight, just very
duU to watch. One guitarist was actually seated
throughout the entire setl I am still in awe of
Rogers' vocals, especially since he is so average in
his looks. His attire consisted of a plain navy blue
sweater and jeans, and a short neat brown hair cut.
He looksHke someone you would find asking for the
2 for ideal on Cheerios at your local supermarket.
The only slightly entertaining thing about Norma Jean's set was the ghastly stench they emitted
when they took the stage. They looked and smeUed
as though they hadn't showered in weeks, and to
top it off they had smeared dirt (or something of
the sort) all over themselves. Other than that, and a
second drummer that seemed to be serving no purpose other than to look neat, they were completely
mediocre. Their music is less than impressive,
sounding Hke every other band on their genre right
now, and they weren't even overly energetic.
All in all, the show was quite bland, with few
Sarah Fischer
November 10
St. James Community Hall
Whether or not I ever wanted to visit the Holy
Land, on Friday November 10th at the St. James
Community Hall, I was taken there anyhow. Sitting in a church pew surrounded by an audience
of music purists, half of whom looked Uke reUgious
prophets or new hippies (I couldn't decide), I was
first mesmerized by the opening band from Baltimore, Human Bell. They reminded me that God
knows how important acoustics are. Their first
song was reminiscent of Tubular Bells, but without
the bells. Instead, an electric guitar and a double-
armed electric guitar made the crowd sit up and
listen. These two very talented musicians have already been added to my list of favorites. They began
with intense energy, played, ironically, with an eerie calmness that slowly built to a chorus of frenetic
guitar strumming held back for an instant before
reaching a powerful climax. Tingling and exciting.
That was foUowed by a song that blasted me back to
the 70s and reminded me of the George Harrison
and Ravi Shankar union, without the hash and
chillum. Their music reached a place deep inside of
me, that produced a gut-wrenching pain intensifies
by the melodic, crisp, clear sounds of the trumpet.
Then, Uke a haunting, soft thunder, drums were
added to produce deep, sensual and erotic feelings,
and a need to connect with another human being.
This team of Nathan BeU and Dave Heumann were
a perfect lead-up to Bonnie "Prince" Billy and hre
morbid lyrics.
Not since 1977, when we renamed Dan Hill
Dan "Slash Your Wrists" HU1, have I felt so sad, so
lonely and so full of dread. Opening with "A Song
for a New Breed", from I See A Darkness, I, too, saw
the dark. Painfully crying out for love, with a Clapton-like solo, I asked myself, "Can a guitar really
speak to me?" Oh yes, when Bonnie "Prince" BiUy
strums his guitar, it surer/ can, and I was reminded
of the neediness which can be found deep within
my soul. His lyrics are literal and contemplative,
not for the shallow. With no introduction or heUo to
the audience, B.P.B. continued straight into "Wai".
Melodic and harmonic, Uke a lullaby, we watched as
he UteraUy lulled a baby to sleep a few pews over. I
found myself yearning for someone to lay with and
be that safe.
Finally, he acknowledged the* audience, too
briefly, and then continued to play a variety of
songs, enough to please the seasoned B.P.B. fans
and win new converts to the Church of BiUy. "lion
Lair" was definitely a crowd-pleaser, his playing
strong and seamless with a country influence that
was loud and clear. BiUy is not for the faint of heart.
His songs are Uke the last song you hear at the club,
where lovers intertwine and make an unspoken
promise to be "one" for at the least the next few
hours. Heads were bobbing rhythmicaUy and in
recognition with each song he played.
There were uplifting moments, but most of his
music was sombre in nature. I related to the hardship and the darkness and the need for love he sings
about, but in the larger scheme of things in my life,
I prefer to be uplifted and distracted from my pain.
Bonnie "Prince" BiUy got me in touch with feelings
I would rather be in denial about, especially during
this time of year when it's so dark it's hard to see the
light. BiUy has a following of fans who clearly are in
touch with their feelings, and they loved him.
K. Bourne
November 11
The Gallery Lounge
I wasn't in the joUiest of moods, since for one
darn thing, my thumb was sore from a red poppy
pin wounding from the Orpheum Remembrance
Day Concert eariier that day (a sea of white and
grey hair, but a deeply poignant show of war vets,
marching bands and swing dance). The other darn
thing was the drive on the UBC highway was something out of horror flick—torrential downpour and
one lonely man taking the fearsome hour walk of
darkness, his face spectre-like in the headlights. But
Meligrove Band and The Golden Dogs changed that
entire haunted Novemberous mood.
■ The show was relocated from the Pit to the Gallery due to the surprisingly mere 40 pre-sokl tickets,
but it made for a nice intimate soiree. The Golden
Dogs opened the night (The Junction, who regularly open on the tour, had their van break down in
Edmonton). The Golden Dogs were buckets of pure
energy and good-spirited shouting. They have an
unpretentious glitz about them, which consoles me
since lately everywhere I turn seems to stink of hip-
ness. The sitting crowd pushed their tables aside,
got up and started a fun Uttle dance party. Between
tambourine and putting up cute laminated signs of
each song name, Jessica Grassia played the piano
so hard it made her head bang. It was such a dance
frenzy you wouldn't have even noticed if Denise
DiSCORDER      31 (((RLA)))
Richards was chucking laptops across the bar hitting old
ladies in the head. The Golden Dogs are the kind of band
that I would advise not doing drugs to see—they are intoxicating enough.
MeUgrove Band was everything I wanted out of four
guys rocking super hard. At times everyone was dancing
so madly that you hardly noticed that the whole song was
instrumental, which may have been in part to singer Jason
Nunes' case of strep throat. Nonetheless, the guy is also a
powerhouse on the guitar and piano. And Uke the Golden
Dogs, MeUgrove retains an unsnobbiness while producing
a sophisticated aura.
Hats off to a killer show. I even signed both bands' mailing lists, which is rare. I left feeling Uke I could dance till
dawn, despite my thumb and the beastly weather. Both
bands were deeply impressed with the enthused and dancy
Vancouver crowd, being used to pensive indie kids with
folded arms. I was proud of us too.
Marlaina Mah
November 14th
Richard's on Richard-
No statement can better account for the events of November 14th than the following—I feU asleep stiU wearing
my bandana because the sweat I had excreted from the
night of dancing made it impossible to untie. The next
morning, I showered wearing it.
It was an evening that was buzzing with constant motion. I had only just sauntered in the front door when I
realized that this was one of the best atmospheres of any
show this year. Every person in the room knew each other
within just a few degrees of separation. These conditions
can often lead to some pretty incestuous scenes around
Vancouver, but Richard's on Richards was the exception
that night. It was a diverse cross-section of characters and
groups that had all come to hang up their egos, throw caution to the wind, and just dance.
The Presets opened the night as an electro-clash dance
duo. Slowly throughout their set, I felt as though the blood
in my veins was being transfused by whatever (he opposite
of formaldehyde is (perhaps the serum used by Dr. Hill in
Re-Animator). My body had phased from stiff and ridged to
fluidic and animated. With each passing song the audience
graduated from toe-tapping to head-bobbing and then, finally, to the classic Vanhipster knee-jolt of approval. The
set had ended on an intensely high note as many of the
club's patrons dashed outside for a quick fresh air cool-
down and a couple drags of nicotine.
If Presets was a blood transfusion, The Rapture was an
all-out lobotomy. I was dancing in the first 3 rows of the
crowd the entire night, yet I can't recall a single time where
I glanced on stage. There was just too much going on down
on the floor. With each passing song, the audience moved
more and more as one. By mid-set, the band performed
their re-cut version of "Get Myself Into It (Wanna Help
Me Do It?)", the lyrics of which became the anthem of the
night, and the entire room of music goers began dancing
and moving together almost as one Uving organism. At
one point, late in The Rapture's set, frontman Luke Jenner
(probably taking a cue from the indie kid makeout party
going on in the front row) felt the love in the room and instructed everyone in the audience to turn to their neighbor
and give them a peck on the cheek. The audience compUed
as the band kicked into 2003's "best song ever", "House
of Jealous Lovers". It's what good shows in Vancouver are
made of.
Danny McCash  w
KEVIN 1)1 VI NHHHH^^HHH^^HHHHI^Bi^^^iHHH^^l^i^HHi^BHH--H----^^MHI^^^H_i
(Control Group)
Music executives think they're
smarter than you. That's why
they devise schemes like reissues
to steal your money. They trick
you into thinking something old
is new again by snazzing up the
packaging, adding a few "bonus
tracks", and maybe a video or
two. More often than not, this
trick dUutes the merit of the original and leaves you wanting to
strategically scratch out the sub-
par bonus material. Thankfully,
the third incarnation of El Perro
Del Mar's debut has avoided this
pitfall by not altering much of its
original conception.
The songs on EI Perro Del
Mar's North American debut
have been floating around in
some form or another for about
two years now. They first appeared in 2004 on two limited-
edition EPs, were then assembled
by Memphis Industries earlier
this year and now appear on a
domestic release with just one
pesky bonus track from the spUt
7-inch with Jens Lekman.
So why bother releasing these
songs so many times? WeU, because they're damn good. Sweden's El Perro Del Mar, aka Sarah
Assbring, makes the type of music that begs for repeated listening. Like the French chanteuse
Francoise Hardy, El Perro Del
Mar's blend of the femme fatale
with the lonely girl next door is
as fascinating as it is inviting.
Musically she appeals to retro
sensibilities, and yet adds enough
of her own to prevent songs from
ever being duU. Songs Uke "God
Knows (You Gotta Give to Get)"
and "I Can't Talk About It"
sound Uke they were produced
by a PbJl Spector gone lo-fi, and
"Here Comes That Feeling" has
Assbring's vocals simply dripping in reverb as she gives a nod
to old Otis Redding.
Since these songs are about
two years old, ingest them quickly and be on the lookout for new
material, because El Perro Del
Mar must have something brewing in the kitchen by now.
BRock Thiessen
One More Drifter in the Snow
(Superego Records)
Aimee Mann has made a deal
with the devil. That's the only
way to explain the 46-year-old
American Ute-rocker's flawless good looks, which remain
virtually unchanged since her
chart success in the 80s fronting 'TU Tuesday (famous for
their quasi-hit single, "Voices
Carry"). Whether from Botox
or just amazing genes, her bone
structure, flowing blonde locks,
and wrinkle-free skin put people
half her age to shame. If only
the same praise could be heaped
upon her latest album.
A Christmas album is usually
a bad idea. Gimmicky at best and
unlistenable at worst, Christmas
albums are usually played for
a few weeks in December, then
consigned forever to the bargain
bins. Too bad for One More Drifter
in the Snow, Mann's tenth album,
that it had to fall into such a miserable category. Granted, it's not
as bad as it could be, but it's still
not very exciting.
Except for two original songs,
the album is a collection of the
"classic" yuletide music Bing
Crosby and his Uk croon over
department store PA systems
every year. Mann wrote one
song on the album (the forgettable "Calling on Mary"), and
one was written by her husband,
singer Michael Penn. Most of
the songs—languid, lounge-y
confabulations—ooze together
and form a not-entirely-terrible-
but-stiU-not-very-interesting miasma of saddish Christinas goo.
Much Uke the fruitcake an elderly relative brings to Christmas
every year, One More Drifter in the
Snow isn't particularly appetizing, nor would you want any in,
say, mid-August, but it somehow
satisfies, in a weird way. Continuing with the fruitcake metaphor,
it is a mass of festive, sometimes
syrupy, sometimes bitter nostalgia in a bland, sUghtly stale
matrix of half-assed, depressing
elevator music. Non-devotees of
Aimee Mann: avoid this album.
Fans: do yourseU a favour. Pull
out your old copy of, say, Bachelor No. 2. Use the extra money to
buy a Santa hat and some candy
canes. Seriously, fuck this shit.
Maxwell Maxwell
Until Death Comes
(Secretly Canadian)
Until Death Comes gets off
to an impressive start with the
double-tracked vocals of the piano-driven "I Drive My Friend",
Ihe finest of the ten tracks on
Frida's debut. Upon first listen,
however, it wasn't the lilting
trot of the former, but Ihe Une
"once I felt your cock against my
thigh" that first grabbed my attention. The words came on the
record's fifth song, "Once I Was a
Serene Teenaged Child," and left
me wondering if they were part
of a larger example of rather
brilliant observational songwriting, or simply a cheap attention
grab. In all honesty, after several
listens, it doesn't reaUy matter,
as the awkward memories of
junior high slow dances that it
evoked served to break the relative monotony of the listening
experience. That's not to say
that Until Death Comes is out and
out bad—it just fails to Uve up to
Frida's potential.
Hyvonen is at her best when
she's penning tunes with the
upbeat bounce of the album's
opener, but she never reaches the
same level as "I Drive My Friend".
"You Never Got Me Right", for
example, starts off strong but
withers after the first minute,
slowly limping for another 53
seconds, and ending before it has
a chance to take off again. Ironically, her slower numbers suffer
from the opposite problem, with
the very short "Valerie" (clocking
in at a mere 1:34) standing head
and shoulders above the rest of
the more reserved compositions
on the record, due in large part
to its brevity. Conversely, "N.Y."
plods along slowly as Hyvonen
plunks out chords, singing the
praises of the Big Apple in uninspiring fashion, while some
"tasteful" horns decorate the
space around her. After four minutes of this, the off-beat bounce
of "The Modern"—another one
of the record's highlights—is a
welcome rescue.
On Until Death Comes, Frida
demonstrates that she's certainly capable of writing some rather
stunning, ivory-laced pop songs.
Unfortunately, the record is so
uneven, it's hard to recommend.
The high points are good enough
to rank with most of the finer
releases Tve heard this year, but
they're too few and far between.
And while Frida's voice is one of
her strengths, she's certainly no
Cat Power, and can't hide her
somewhat rudimentary piano
playing behind her pipes for the
duration of a fuH-length.
Quinn Omori
Nine Times That Same Song
(What's Your Rupture?)
It's too bad that we only get
to hear that song nine times,
but if you find the edition with a
bonus disc you can listen to the
song four more times, and that
includes Yoko Ono and Kim
Fowley covers that nod to these
musicians from the yesteryears
of rock history. These Swedes
have taken dancey art-punk
that's recently been sounding
32    Jancember 2007 _Jll_iW^ __h_______¥_Z
same-old-same-old and managed to etch some freshness out
of it. Josephine Olausson's voice
is a wonderful throwback to 80s
post-punk vocalists like Blond-
ie's Debbie Harry and Delta
5's Julz Sale. The sax they've
thrown in on most of their songs
brings elements of ska or jazz,
but in such an alien setting as
to render them almost unrecognizable. Faster tracks Uke "Used
Goods" start with a minimalist
post-punk feel and slowly push
towards a danceable waU of
noise at the end. These upbeat
numbers contend with simpler
musical backdrops to Olausson's
voice, such as "Turn the TV Off"
and "Turn the Radio Off", which
invoke an eerie sorrow.
This album does more than
ride on the wave of a popular flavour of the week, but stands out
as one of the stronger albums as
the second wave of this music
begins to wash over us. Most of
the imitators in dance-punk are
easUy forgettable, however this
album is one that wiU stick out
as a suitable child of the parents
that spawned it.
Jordie Sparkle
Orphan Music
The premise of Orphan Music
seems to be that it's an album of
music that doesn't have an album, which means that it mainly
consists of new versions of songs
from Slean's 2004 release Day
One. This includes not one, but
two versions each of "Lucky
Me" and "Pugrim", and winds
up with versions of nine of the
eleven songs that made up Day
One. Yet overall Orphan Music is
a lot closer to Slean's roots than
Day One—the first few tracks are
recordings of live performances
with her piano as the instrument
of choice.
What's really interesting
about these songs is that Sarah
Slean's vocal performance is
always similar to the album
version, throwing the emphasis
onto the music. It turns out this
has a big effect: "Lucky Me",
originaUy a pretty pop-sound
ing single, shows up here first
as a lounge piece for piano, and
then at the end of the album as
performed by a string quartet.
The three versions have very different moods, and seemingly give
different meanings to Slean's often enigmatic lyrics.
Since so much of Orphan Music is a version of Day One, it's
easy to think of this as a companion album, the kind of dubious release that features remixes
suspiciously simflar to the album
version. But this isn't the case;
instead, the songs almost become
entirely new tracks. With the addition of a handful of b-sides and
two unreleased songs, this is the
next best thing to a new album.
On the other hand, if you
don't Uke Sarah Slean in the first
place, then you probably won't
have much use for what is essen-
tiaUy an album of Sarah Slean
doing covers of Sarah Slean
songs. But you already knew
Neale Barnholden
Live a Little
(Ashmont Records)
Joe Pernice has decided to put
a Uttle music to his writing again
with his band Pernice Brothers.
And thankfuUy, his 45-second
stint on Gilmore Girls doesn't
seem to have gone to his head.
As always, his teary melodies
and Elvis Costello-like delivery
make for some rather efficient
power-pop on the new album,
Live a Little. Here, Pernice and
co. revisit some old friends and
sounds, whUe at the same time
stretching out their artistic feel-
As for the old, producer Michael Deming is back behind the
boards. He recorded Pernice's
previous band, the Scud Mountain Boys, and the first Pernice
Brothers record, Overcome by
Happiness. Also returned are
the strings and horns that accompanied the debut record,
making an effective comeback
on this latest release. On tracks
like the Curtis Mayfield-tinged
"Zero Refills" and horn-squelching   "Microscopic   View",   this
instrumentation is a perfect fit
for Pernice's poignant yet funny
lyrics. And to top off the old, the
Pernice Brothers have re-recorded "Grudge Fuck", which was
originaUy done with the Scud
Mountain Boys.
As for the new, Live a Little is
more of a rock record than previous albums. This doesn't necessarily mean you'U break out the
devH horns, but foot-tapping and
head-bopping are often appropriate. This is especiaUy noticeable
in the album's early tracks Uke
"Automaton" and "SomervUle".
The lyrics also feel a bit more
rock 'n' roll this time out, such as
on the stunning closer "High as
a Kite", which rhymes summer
with Joe Strummer.
Package this all up and you
have yourseU a great Uttle album.
BRock Thiessen
Saturday Night Wrist
"Hole in the Earth", the
opener to the band's fifth studio
album, rivals "My Own Summer
(Shove It)" as Deftones' biggest
radio-friendly-unit-shifter to
date. Normally such a phrase
would likely strike fear in the
heart of the discerning music
Ustener, but in this instance it's
no bad thing. The song's main
riff sounds huge, its chorus even
bigger still. It is quickly apparent
that this album doesn't deviate
far from the band's established
sound, but what really sets this
album apart from their last is
the production. While 2003's
eponymous effort was drenched
in swathes of tar-thick guitars,
to the point where they nearly
drowned out the rest of the band,
this album is far more balanced.
Compared to the dense and almost impenetrable Deftones, Saturday Night Wrist has been made
far more palatable by Canada's
own Bob Ezrin (Pink Floyd,
Kiss, Alice Cooper). This has
reaUy brought singer Chino
Moreno's superb voice to the fore
and given greater prominence to
Frank Delgado's contribution of
keys and samples, which has pre
viously been very hard to distinguish. These two characteristics
are weU displayed on "Xerces",
a song that sees the band wearing their 80s influences on then-
sleeves. Elsewhere on the album,
"Rats!Rats!Rats!" is a staggeringly abrasive affair that combines
discordant aggression with a
beautifuHy soaring chorus.
The only occasion when this
album falters is on the minimalist electro of "Pink CeHphone",
which features a rather irritating
spoken word piece from Giant
Drag's Annie Hardy. Fortunately,
the album quickly recovers with
a closing triumvirate of brilliant
songs: "Combat", "Kimdracula",
and "Riviere". This album once
again reaffirms Deftones' position as a band who came to
prominence during the nu-metal
movement but has always been a
far more fulfilling, cerebral and
indeed enduring musical proposition than the rest of the bunch.
Korn who?
Human Animal
(Sub Pop)
Over the last 8 years or so,
I've managed to collect dozens
of Wilco bootlegs. It's a practice
that's been questioned numerous
times, and one that I finaUy gave
up fairly recently. The shoebox
fuU of CD-Rs that I've accumulated over the years vary from tour
to tour, but a lot of them would
be almost indistinguishable from
one another, were it not for the
very carefully written labels on
each of the paper sleeves. What,
you might ask, does this have to
do with WoU Eyes? Not a lot, but
Despite former associations with Jim O'Rourke, and
the drafting of sound-bending
guitar virtuoso Nels Cline,
musically WUco have virtu-
aUy nothing in common with
WoU Eyes. The Michigan trio's
recorded output, however, does
bear a certain resemblance to
that stack of bootlegs that currently sits in my room; for the
uninitiated, if you've heard one,
you could've easuy heard them
aU. I'm not suggesting that "aU
noise sounds the same" or even
that one WoU Eyes track or album is indistinguishable from
another. However, if you're not a
hardcore devotee, you'd be hard
pressed to glean any significant
differences between washes of
sound on Human Animal and
any of the dozens of recordings
the band's released this year.
Sinularly, WUco's January 10th,
2001 rendition of "Shot in the
Arm" is surely different from the
March 12th, 2001 performance
of "Shot in the Arm", but no one
would blame you if you didn't
know why or care either way.
But you should still care about
Human Animal.
If you've got a stack of cassettes and LPs that you acquired
from the merch table during
WoU Eyes' recent visit to Vancouver, you already know this
record is one of the best things
WoU Eyes has put out this year
or any. If you aren't drowning in
tapes full of aural experimentation, however, this is an exceUent
place to start. Human Animal
finds WoU Eyes in a sUghtly more
subdued state of mind, but there
are stiU moments of squealing,
crashing, and banging that build
to create some sublime moments
that emerge from the rather
wonderful cacophony. If you're
not a WoU Eyes devotee, chances
are you won't find yourseU ready
to embark on a quest to fiH your
iPod with the rest of the band's
vast catalogue, but if you're only
going to put your money on one
noise recording this year, this record is a pretty safe bet.
Quinn Omori
Riot City Blues
It's hard to guess what Primal
Scream were thinking when they
decided to lay down Riot City
Blues. The album's return to the
Faces/Stones persona previously featured on '94's Give Out But
Don't Give Up is a rather strange
move. No more Kevin Shield. No
more electronic gadgetry. Nowhere close to XTRMNTR. Just
Bobby G and the boys playin'
some down-home boogie-woogie.
And as bad (or good) as this
might sound, Riot City Blues
does have its moments. The
rock 'n' roU numbers, "Suicide
SaUy & Johnny Guitar" and "The
99th Floor," go down easy after
a beer or three, and "HeU's Comin' Down" caHs for some boot
stompin', courtesy of the country and western vibe whipped up
by Dirty Three's Warren EUis.
However, Uke Give Out But Don't
Give Up, the album's strongest
tracks are the sjpwer numbers,
Uke "Sometimes I Feel So Lonely"
and "Little Deatii", which might
almost fit on one of the last two
Primal Scream records. If you
key in on these few decent songs
and ignore the blatantly cUche
lyrics of Bobby GiHespie, which
are a given at this point, Riot City
Blues is decent enough.
Note: Not sure U aU the copies out there are Uke this, but my
lame-ass bonus material seems
to be improperly labeled. Instead
of the Usted John Lennon cover
of "Gimme Some Truth", I got a
Uve version of "Country Girl",
and there's no video content on
this disc Uke they teH me there is.
Either the cutbacks must be bad
at the majors, or this was some
trick to make me put this disc in
my computer so it could infect
my baby.
BRock Thiessen
Harpo's Ghost
Knee-deep in the music business since her teenage debut
with Burning Dorothy, Britain's
Thea Gilmore works in the mold
of Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell.
and Elvis Costello, among
others. Eight years (including a
three-year hiatus) later, those
influences stiU hold strong on
Harpo's Ghost.
To me, the way artists use
instruments is very important.
Technique can contribute or
harm the music considerably,
depending on factors Uke variety
and notes played. Throughout
Harpo's Ghost the instrumentation mostly stays low key yet
ifPff B interesting, Uke in the first (and
probably best) track, "The Gambler", with its smooth piano
chords. Flashes of electric organ
and harmonica solos (a Dylan
trademark) grace such laid back
tracks as "CaU Me Your Darling",
and ceUo/oriental flute weave
throughout "Slow Journey II".
On other tracks, a simple acoustic guitar or percussion accompaniment provides the only support for a sparse, stark tone ("The
List," "Whistle and Steam").
With her ear toward variety, she
also includes a metal-pop serving ("We BuHt a Monster") that's
sure to get some airplay (weU, at
least on 101.9 FM).
Gilmore also sports a strong,
competent voice with minimal
vibrato. She in fact reminds me
of the modern Joni MitcheU (I'm
not trying to box her in with
these comparisons; it just helps
in visualizing her music). Her
penchant for writing fun, almost
sing-along vocal melodies is a
plus to my ears (such as "Cheap
Tricks," which I would release
as a single i_ I were her). Besides,
who wants to hear a cynical folk-
ster without a decent sense of
But what is her weakness,
you ask? Two things: the first is
the words. As with many introvert singer-songwriters, Gilmore
writes lyrics that try too hard
to sound mysterious and full
of angst. The second is the production: too often, the electric
rhythm guitar is played in the
same loud manner. Some variety
would freshen things up.
John Park
Beast Moans
(Scratch Recordings)
It must have been an interesting process for three of Western
Canada's most distinct musical
minds to come together to create
Beast Moans. In doing so, Spencer Krug, Dan Bejar and Carey
Mercer have crafted an album in
which the unique styles of each
musician are obviously recognizable. Each song was essentially
written by one of the members,
and as a result the album flows
almost Uke a mix of b-sides from
their respective catalogues. In
their efforts to forge a new Swan
Lake sound, these three indie giants have created watered-down
versions of their individual aesthetics.
This album had so much potential, but despite other opinions printed in this publication,
I can't help but be disappointed
by the inabiUty of these bril-
liant artists to come together
and make something at least as
good as one of their individual
records. It really pains me to
put this into words, as I have
the utmost respect for each of
these individuals, and I feel like
I am letting them down in some
way by not liking what in theory
should be one of the best albums
of the year. This album may
come as a let down to those who
were drooling over this release,
34     Decembuary 2006
but it stiU holds merit for the true
fan, and it even has a few gems
hiding under its veneer of overaU
Jordie Sparkle
Atlantis is K-Os' third album,
and it plays Uke a celebration.
Right from the first song, "Elec-
trik Heat", you are hauled into
adventure and curiosity. K-Os
evokes the eighties with a combination of Motown, rap, rocka-
biUy and rock. "Electrik Heat"
is playfully done rap that takes
you back to the days of Chaka
Khan's "Ain't Nobody". The rest
of the album features a wide
variety of styles, proving that
K-Os is not afraid to experiment.
On "Equalizer", he sings, "this
rap's not afraid to try the mo's."
Through his nostalgic-sounding baUads, the Torontonian MC
weaves lyrics with a storytelling
rap style that keeps you engaged
and entertained.
This is my favourite of K-
Os' albums. There is definite
growth and a sense of increasing confidence—he no longer
reUes catchy repetitive bits to
replay in your mind for eternity.
Each song is independently in a
world of its own, aH grown up.
But even with the various styles,
you get the sense that he is not
trying to please you, but is more
concerned with simply having
a good time throughout. My favourite song is "Valhala", featuring Sam Roberts: "If you can't
dance to this it doesn't matter"
somehow evolves into "Warrior's
blood runs red through the eyes
of the dead." WhUe these fines
may leave you baffled, K-Os has
you in his hands, and somehow
it works.
Julie Okot Bitek
Tower of Love
Imagine a palette full of
the best albums of the 1960s.
Manchester, UK native Jim Non-
covers the musical canvas of
his debut album Tower of Love
with strokes of Revolver, shades
of Pet Sounds, and a light dab of
Bookends. That being said, Noir is
also bursting with originality. On
Tower of Love, he mixes layers of
Beach Boys-esque harmonies,
hummable melodies, sUck bass
fines, and electronic beats into
an amazing fusion of new and
Noir refuses to conform to
convention, as each track takes
a complete departure from the
standard verse-chorus-verse-
chorus-bridge that's so prevalent
in pop music. There's an odd,
unexpected twist to be found
in every track and, for the most
part, they're welcome additions.
Some songs will feature Uttle
more than one or two fines of vocals, whUe others are completely
instrumental. "A Quiet Man" is
perhaps the strongest result of
the musical fusion found on the
album, backing house-styled
backbeats and a booming bass
track to thick layers of sunny
harmonies. MeanwhUe, "TeU Me
What To Do" is straight-up vintage Revolver, and that's never a
bad thing.
Throughout aU the complexity and eccentric styles, the
true gem of the album revels in
its simpUcity: the closer "The
Only Way." The track sounds
like what would result if Brian
Wilson tried to write "Sounds of
SUence." Noir sings variations of
"This is possibly the only time/
the last time I can teU you/To teU
you meant so much to me" over
a gently plucked acoustic guitar
as the song gradually builds into
a spectacular coUage of soaring
harmonies. As the song fades
into sUence, the Ustener is left in
anticipation of the next musical masterpiece that inevitably
awaits from Jim Noir.
Robin Hawkins
When the Angels Make Contact
(Sonic Records)
The story goes like this: Fresh
off cleaning house at the East
Coast Music Awards, Matt Mays
begins Iensing When the Angels
Make Contact, a film project for
which he wiU write, produce and
star. The plot details are fuzzy,
but it seems to teU the story of
one J.J. Carver (our man Mays), a
troubled ruffian on a motorcycle
who must make a pact with the
supernatural to regain a fallen
loved one. It sounds awfully similar to Ghost Rider, but I might
be reading it wrong. We'U never
reaUy know: according to Mays'
website, the film was quickly
shelved, as Matt ran out of money to keep it off the ground. Flash
forward a few months and we
are left with Mays' third album,
When the Angels Make Contact,
the soundtrack he wrote for the
film that never was.
Or so the story goes. Is
WTAMC reaUy an OST for a film
that fell apart, or is Mays pulling
the wool over our eyes with an
inventive back-story to a clever
concept album? With Uttle evidence of a film-shoot, it's tough
to say for certain. StiU, regardless
of its origins, this is an ambitious
record that sees Matt grow and
experiment as a songwriter. And
for the most part, he succeeds.
Stepping away from the hard-
charging sound of his last album,
Mays aims more for atmosphere
here, mixing things up with
ambient noise and the mournful
strumming of an acoustic guitar.
StyUsticaUy, it's nuldly reminiscent of his seU-titled debut, but
before things get too familiar,
Matt flips the record on its head.
On the title track, for example,
Buck 65 pops in for a verse and
seems right at home amidst the
song's gritty backbeat, strong
focus on rhythm, and lyrics rife
with internal rhyme. There's
a more urbanized sound being
showcased here, dffferent from
anything the cowboy rocker's
done before.
I won't bother trying to piece
together the story the songs teU,
but I will say this: there are a
handful of exceUent tracks on
this disc, and while it may not
be as consistent as El Torpedo, it's
certainly gutsy. In a time when
most bands taste success only to
pump out the same album again
and again. Mays opts to take a
risk—a big risk. And as the sun
sets on J.J. Carver, Nova Scotia's
golden boy emerges more complete for the experience.
Justin Morrisette
Birthday Party
It isn't often that a band Uke
the Winks come along. They
meld together different styles:
elements of pop, jazz, folk, and
indie rock interplay with then-
use of "unusual" instruments.
The core members highlight
this: Todd MacDonald plays
mandolin and Tyr Jami plays
the ceUo against the sounds
of saxaphone, flute, and—of
course—drums and keyboard.
The extra instruments are played
by a rotating cast of characters,
which on Birthday Party includes
Salteens stalwart Tim Sars and
world traveler Adrian Burrus.
Having just recently moved
to Montreal, the Winks were an
integral part of the Vancouver
scene for quite some time, playing every other weekend here to
ecstatic crowds of indie-hipsters
and art-school graduates. They
have already released a slew of
recordings, many of which were
CD-R only releases that sympa
thetic ears still cling to. Birthday
Party is not much of a departure
from these eariier releases, but
rather a fulfillment of them. This
release is a melancholy yet mature coUection, and the songs on
this record shine.
"Snakes (Revisited)" is a
crowd favourite that does not
disappoint. The opening track,
"Slumber Party, Let's Go" captures the mood of their live show,
a subtle energy interplayed with
interesting instrumentation. "O
[]" has an almost classical feel to
it, showing how the Winks truly
differ from other indie rock acts.
Not only are the songs good, but
the production also sounds great.
This is largely due to the work of
John Collins and Dave CarsweU,
who recorded the album at their
legendary JC/DC studios.
The Winks' Birthday Party
definitely makes a better birthday present than tube socks or
Joseph Paling
Put Your Ghost to Rest
Yet another Dylan admirer,
New Yorker Kevin Devine is one
of today's many guitar-wielding
introverts. Aside from Dylan, he
cites Nirvana, the late Elliott
Smith, and Guns N' Roses as
some of his favourites. In recent
years his music has reflected his
increasing poUtical befiefs and
loss of his father, though it's
hard to find the latter in Put Your
Ghost to Rest.
But before we get to the music,
I must get this off my chest: his
lyrics can sometimes be a turn-
off. Devine tries to convey pain,
lit c 0 <u i i
sadness, and love, and whUe the
words are sincere, he often overdoes it. The excess shows up in
places such as "Less Yesterday,
More Today" and the embarrassing "BUHon Bees," which is
up to its eyebrows in the mushy
department ("TU I watched your
fingers sneak towards mine" or
"And I sucked your Up and bit
your neck"). But he also includes
a poem hidden in the sleeves, "I
See America's Promise," detaU-
ing America's ailing condition
("its smiling lips/ and snowstorm
teeth/ and jackyl jaw/ and high
priest TV tongue"), and I've got
to admit Devine can get very
To be honest, Devine is at his
musical best when he turns up
the volume with the ol' guitar-
and-drums rather than when he
waUows in mushy love. The best
tracks are at the beginning of
the album ("Brooklyn Boy" and
"You're TraUing YourseU," with
confusing philosophical lyrics
that I won't bother to decipher).
"You'U Only End Up Joining
Them" verges on seU-pity—but
who cares when the music
rocks? Ditto with "Like Cursing
Kids" and "The Burning City
Smoking", which prove Devine
is a better rocker than confessor.
The jovial mood from "Trouble"
(the happiest track, by the way)
is unfortunately negated by the
wimpy "Heaven Bound & Glory
Be," ending Put Your Ghost to
Rest on a limp note—but hey, it
sure beats most of today's awful
John Park    ft
HJTrto fcfP
<.j_£-*ftr\ CITR CHARTS!
///////////////////////////'Strictly ihe clopesthits of2006
CiTR's charts reflect what has been spun on the air for the previous year. Rekkids with stars (*) mean they
across Vancouver, if you can't find 'ere there give the Muzak Coordinator a shout at 604-822-8733. His name
charts check out www.earshot-online.com.
from this great land o' ours. Most of these platters can be found at finer (read: independent) music store:
is Luke. If you ask nicely he'll teH you how to git 'em. To find out other great campus/community radio
Bonnie 'Prince' BiUy
Cursed Sleep ep
Drag City
The Jolts*
Blood Meridian*
Kick Up the Dust
The Doers*
Whatcha Doin' ?
Red Cat
A little Place in the Wilderness
Good Fences
Return To The Sea
The Dudes*
Brain Heart Guitar
Load Music
Various Artists*
Mint Records Presents: ThtCBC Radio 3 Sessions
Sandro Petri*
Plays Polmo Popo
Fox Confessor Brings The Flood
Great Aunt Ida*
How They Fly
Northern Electric
Drum's Not Dead
Ghost House*
Arctic Monkeys
Whatever People Say I Am...
Phone    jd
The Century Of Invention
They Shoot Horses Don't They?*
KiURock Stars
The Buttless Chaps*
Where Night Holds light
Run Chico Run*
Slow Action
The Paper Cranes*
Unfamiliar          ||
Pink Mountaintops*
Axis Of Evol
^ Scratch
The Leather Uppers*?^
Bright lights
Cadence Weapon*
Breaking Kayfabe
Upper Class
Sunset Rubdown*
Shut Up I Am Dreaming
Absolutley Kosher
Easy Star AB Stars
Easy Star
No Luck Club*
Call Me When Old and Fat Is the New Young and Sexy
Just Friends
Young And Sexy*
Panic When You Find It
I like Their Older Stuff Better
Black Ox Orkestar*
The Hidden Cameras*
Without Feathers
Girl Talk
Night Ripper
Illegal Art
The New Pastoral
Camera Obscura
lets Get Out of This Country
Fob Four Suture
Too Pure
AU the Roads lead to Ausfahrt
Emily Haines and the Soft Skeleton*
Knives Don't have Your Back
Last Gang
Final Fantasy*
He Poos Clouds
Pigeon John and the Summertime
Pool Party
The looks
Last Gang
TV on the Radio
Return to Cookie Mountain
The Winks*
Birthday Party
Yo La Tengo
IAmNotAfraidOfYouAndlWlllBeat Your Ass
Nina Nastasia
On leaving
Fat Cat
Various Artists*
Jamaica to Toronto: Soul Funk and Reggae 1967-197
_      Light In The Attic
Shotgun & Jaybird*
Trymg to Get Somewhere
Joel and the Last of the Neighbours*
The Tong Dynasty
International Falls*
Tokyo Police Club*
A lesson in Crime
Southern Lord
Pony Up! *
Make Love To The Judges With Your Eyes
Dim Mak
Kimya Dawson
Remember That I love You
Ivan Hrvatska*
Seasons of love (Party all Year)
Yeah Yeah Yeah's
The Weather*
Calling Up My Bad Side
1 33
The Awkward Stage*
Various Artists
Radio Thailand: Transmissions From the Tropkel
Sublime Frequencies
Chad Vangaalen*
The Dears*
Gang of losers
Maple Music
Last Gang
The Cape May*
Glass Mountain Roads
Flemish Eye
Rae Spoon /Rodney Decroo*
Truckers Memorial
Northern Electric
Shout Out Out Out Out*
Not Saying/ Just Saying
nrmis wlcm
The Deadcats*
Flying Saucer
Robert PoUard
From A Compound Eye
Impeach My Bush
Jason Forest
Shamelessly Exciting
Sonig .
The Sadies*
In Concert Volume One
The Husbands
Rubber Traits
Tim Hecker*
Harmony In Ultraviolet
Various Artists
Herb Alpert 's Tijuana Brass Whipped Cream and Other
delights Re Whipped
The Window Seat
When the Going Gets Dark       ^
Touch And Go
Sonic Youth
Rather Ripped
The Fiery Furnaces
1 Bitter Tea
Fat Possum
Test Icicles
Circle Square Triangle
SCansei de Ser Sexy
Billy and the Lost Boys*
Yet, Why Not Sag What Happened?*
New York Dolls
__pie Day it Will Please Us to Remember Even This
The Bicycles*
The Good The Bad And The Cuddly
Fu—sy Logic
les Matins De Grands Soirs     M
Blow the Fuse
But Aren't We All?
Various Artists*
Music Roots: Parade of Noises 2005
Music Roots Semi-
Meek Warrior
Young God
The Bronx
Xiu Xiu
The Air Force
Comets on Fire
Sunn 0)))/Boris
Southern Lord
Les Georges Leningrad* k
Various Artists*
See you on the MoonI
Various Artists
1 54
Fond Of Tigers*
A Thing To Live With
^ Drip Audio
Temporary Resi-
j 55
Dare To Care
DiSCORDER       35 TM H@11.tJFt
You can listen to CiTR online at www.citr.ca or on the air at 101.9 FM
ihe Rock*rs
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the Browns
Let's Get Baked
Native Solidarity News
Son of Nite
the Jazz Show
Vengeance is Mine
Tuird-Timi 's
Mormn- Ajcilr Show
Givr "em the Roof
fAKrt-R Fast Tk \a_
Uk AvantLa Mt'siQut,
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Suburban Jungle
Wrapped in Silver '
.*: Q/-&TJND	
Democracy Now
Radio A Go
Necessary Voices
Hans Kloss'
Misery Hour
SwKii !n" Hot"
MYSarNCI        PHlAi
gxQUisiTE Corpse-
Live I ROM
Cute Band Alert!
Ska-T's Scenic
These are the Breaks I
Nardwuar Presents
Leo Ramirez Show
Shadow J i r<3 glkrs
Shake A Tail
I Like the Scribbles
Beautiful arresting beats and voices
emanating from all continents,
corners, and voids. Seldom-rattled
pocketfuls of roots and gems,
recalling other times, and other
places, to vast crossroads en route
to the unknown and the unclaim-
able. East Asia. South Asia. Africa.
The Middle East. Europe. Latin
America. Gypsy. Fusion. Always
rhythmic, always captivating.
Always crossing borders. Always
Reggae inna aH styles and fashion.
Real cowshit-caught-in-yer-boots
36    Jancember 2007
British pop music from all decades. International pop (Japanese, French, Swedish, British, US,
etc.), 60s soundtracks and lounge.
Book your jet-set holiday nowl
QUEER ¥M(Talk)
Dedicated to the gay, lesbian,
bisexual, and transexual communities of Vancouver. Lots of
human interest features, background on current issues, and
great musk.
Rhythmsindia features a wide
range of music from India, including popular music from the
1930s to the present, classical
music, semi-classical music such
as Ghazals and Bhajans, and also
Qawwalis, pop, and regional language numbers.
Join us in practicing the ancient
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Smiley Mike lays down the latest
trance cuts to propel us into the
domain of the mystical.
wmmm Monday
BROWNS (Eclectic)
Your favourite Brown-sters, James
and Peter, offer a savoury blend of
the familiar and exotic in a blend
of aural delights)
A mix of indie pop, indie rock,
and pseudo underground hip hop,
with your host, Jordie Sparkle.
Hosted by David B.
Underground pop for the minuses
with the occasional interview
with your host, Chris.
LET'S GET BAKED w/matt& dave
Vegan baking with "rock stars"
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Houston, The Novaks and more.
A national radio service and part
of an international network of
information and action in support
of indigenous peoples' survival
and dignity. We are all volunteers
committed to promoting Native
self-determination, culturally,
economically, spiritually and otherwise. The show is self-sufficient,
without government or corporate
NEWS 101 (Talk)
A volunteer-produced, student and
community newscast featuring
news, sports and arts. Reports by
people like you. "Become the Media."
W.I.N.G.S. (Talk)
Womens International News
Gathering Service.
All the classical music you don't
hear on mainstream radio! A variety of innovative and interesting
works from the 20th and 21st centuries, with an occasional neglected
masterpiece from earlier eras.
KARUSU (World)
Vancouver's longest running
primetime jazz program. Hosted
by the ever-suave, Gavin Walker.
Features at 11pm:
Dec. 4: "The Drum Suite" by
Slide Hampton is a jazz gem.
Newly re-issued it features stars
like drummer Mac Roach, Trumpeter Freddie Hubbard and Multi-
Instrumentalist Yusef Lateef!
Dec 11: Trumpeter and jazz
legend Chat Baker always was
able to rally and play great music
despite the chaos of his personal
life. Tonight an hour of Baker
with a super band culled from a
marathon three-day recording
session in 1965 that produced
five records. Baker with tenor
saxophone heavy George Coleman and others. Some of the best
Dec: 18 Our last show for 2006
and as usual the famous Christmas Eve All Star Session with
Miles Davis, Thelonious Monk
and Milt Jackson the spirit of
Christmas stalked this date and
it is our wish to you for a merry
one. The "Bag's Groove" Session
is a great start All the Best!
The Jazz Show will return January
Jan 8: We open the new year and
wish you the best. "East Coasting" by bassist/composer Charles
Mingus is an overlooked treasure
done with his working band and
with pianist Bill Evans filling
in for Mingus' regular pianist
makes this an extra special date.
Jan 15: Trumpeter Miles Davis has always great bands and his
1963 quintet was no exception
with Herbie Hancock (piano)
George Coleman (Tenor Saxophone) and the teenage genius
Tony Williams (drums) and Ron
Carter (bass) this group soared.
Tonight some very rare concert
recordings by this band not
found on commercial recordings.
Jan 22: If the late Carl Fontana
was not the best trombonist
in jazz, he was very close.. We
present his first recording done
in 1985 after playing in bands for
over forty years. Here he is with
tenor saxophonist Al Cohn and
a hot rhythm section in a album
that lives up to it's title "The
Great Fontana".
Jan 29: Wilton "Bogey" Gaynair
(tenor saxophone) is not a household name in jazs circles even by
super fans. Gaynair was born in
Kingston, Jamaica and moved
to London in the mid-fifties and
then to Europe. He is an exceptional player with a big warm
sound and has only made two
albums in his life. "Blue Bogey"
was made in London in the late
fifties and is a testament to his
talent. Bogey is still alive and
well and tonight's feature will
introduce you to him.
All the best the world of punk has
to offer, in the wee hours of the
Bluegrass, old-time music, and its
derivatives with Arthur and the
lovely Andrea Berman.
Open your ears and prepare for
a shock! A harmless note may
make you a fan! Hear the menacing scourge that is Rock and Roll!
Deadlier than the most dangerous
SHOW (Edectic)
Sample the various flavours of
Italian folk music from north to
south, traditional and modern.
Un programma bilingue che es-
plora il mondo della musica folk
Movie reviews and criticism.
En Avant La Musique! se concentre sur le metissage des
genres musicaux au sein d'une
francophonie ouverte a tous les
courants. This program focuses
on cross-cultural music and its
influence on mostly Francophone
Join the sports department for
their coverage of the T-Birds.
Up the punx, down the emo!
Keepin' it real since 1989, yo.
Salario Minimo, the best rock in
Spanish show in Canada.
Trawling the trash heap of over 50
years' worth of rock n' roll debris.
aural Tentacles (Edectic)
It could be punk, ethno, global,
trance, spoken word, rock, the
unusual and the weird, or it could
be something different. Hosted by
DJ Pierre.
Music inspired by Chocolate
Thunder; Robert Robot drops
electro past and present, hip hop
and intergalactic funkmanship
ANOIZE (Noise)
Luke Meat irritates and educates
through musical deconstruction.
Recommended for the strong.
Independent news hosted by
award-winning jounalists Amy
Goodman and Juan Gonzalez.
Primitive, fi-zed-out garage mayhem!
Socio-political,enviromental activist news and spoken word with
some music too.
First Wednesday of every month.
Developing your relational and
individual sexual health, expressing diversity, celebrating queer-
ness, and encouraging pleasure
at all stages. Sexuality educators
Julia and Alix will quench your
search for responsible, progressive
sexuality over your life span!
Two hours of eclectic roots music.
Don't own any Birkenstocks? Allergic to patchouli? C'mon in! A
kumbaya-free zone since 1997.
(Hans Kloss)
This is pretty much the best thing
on radio.
SWEET *N' HOT (Jazz)
Sweet dance music and hot jazz
from the 1920s, 30s, and 40s.
Punk rock, indie pop, and whatever else I deem worthy. Hosted by
a closet nerd.
Zoom a little zoom on the My Science Project rocket ship, piloted
by your host, Julia, as we navigate
eccentric, under-exposed, always
relevant and plainly cool scientific
research, technology, and poetry
(submissions welcome).
Music of the world, with a special
dance around African drum beats.
My passion is music from the Afti-
can Diaspora. Catch up on the latest
and reminisce on classic spins.
Experimental, radio-art, sound
collage, field recordings, etc. Recommended for the insane.
RADIO HELL (Live Mime)
Live From Thunderbird Radio
Hell showcases local talent...LIVE!
Honestly, don't even ask about the
technical side of this.
Email requests to:
Top notch crate digger DJ Avi
Shack mixes underground hip
hop, old school classics, and original breaks.
RADIO ZERO (Edectic)
Independent Canadian music
from almost every genre imaginable covering the east coast to
the left coast and all points in between. Yes, even Montreal!
David "Love" Jones brings you the
best new and old jazz, soul, Latin,
samba, bossa and African music
from around the world.
CiTR Listeners 4S|
We Salute You!
by Robert Robot
("t iTR worn© ukb to tif our hats and thank everyone who searched
J their couches for change, dipped into their bank accounts, and
racked up their credit cards to donate to the station this November. You
made our first funding drive shit-hotf Thanks to your generous donations, CiTR can continue to provide some of the best broadcasting in
Vancouver and the universe as we know it. I'd like to send out a warm
hug to our volunteers—their donated time and expertise is what made
this funding drive possible. We'd also like to thank our splendid sponsors
(Zulu, Mint records, Railway, Beatstreet Records, Anderson Printing, Vi-r
nyl Records, Lamplighter and A AM Sunday Service) for donating music,
books, concert tickets, fc-shirts and many other funtastic prizes.
If you're all talk and no action and never got around to donating
to the funding drive, you still have a chance to redeem yourself via our
website www.citr.ca or by contacting CiTR Station Manager Lydia Masemola atcitrmgr@ams.ubc,ca or 604.822.1242.
In other exciting station news, in 2007 we will be marking the 70th
anniversary of RADSOC (Student Radio Society of UBC), the organization that planted the seeds for CiTR Radio, Another milestone we look
forward to celebrating is our 25 years of broadcasting on the FM dial.
Check out our website in the new year for updates on events we are planning in celebration of these two historic events.
CiTR is also pleased to be the official host of the National Campus
Commumty Radio Association's (NCRC) annual conference slated for
June 10 - 16, 2007. The conference presents broadcasters from across
Canada with an opportunity to meet face-to-face, learn new skills, and
steal each other's ideas. Although we have a reputation for being hip
and cool, we are not snobs (at least we think we're not}, so any listener
or supporter of community radio can also participate in workshops,
seminars and other events we are planning for the conference. For more
information, feel free to contact us or check our website www.citr.ca for
So once again, kudos to you valued listeners for your support! Pat
yourselves on the back and get ready for an improved and undeniably
fresher CiTR!
Beats mixed with audio from old
films and clips from the internet
10% discount for callers who are
certified insane. Hosted by Chris D.
_____________ SATURDAY
Studio guests, new releases, British comedy sketches, folk music
calendar, and ticket giveaways.
A fine mix of streetpunk and old
school hardcore backed by band
interviews, guest speakers, and
social commentary.
Vancouver's only true metal
show; local demo tapes, imports,
and other rarities. Gerald Rattle-
head, Geoff the Metal Pimp and
guests do the damage.
From backwoods delta low-down
slide to urban harp honks, blues,
and blues roots with your hosts
Jim, Andy and Paul.
The best of music, news, sports,
and commentary from around
the local and international Latin
American communities.
News, arts, entertainment and
music for the Russian community,
local and abroad.
An exciting chow of Drum n' Bass
with DJs Jimungle & Bias on the
ones and twos, plus guests. Listen
for give-aways every week. Keep
feelin da beatz.
Discorder     37 fm POOLING ml-
Kj   IRISH PUB    %^
•   ";   '!/' OOO.-uJ     Oiocuu^_ O
join us on Ghri^ms Eve
at Doolin^jfiflrood
^faes, late fflglit^pizza
^ New Year
Celebration |
•pip     IplMParty Favofjft
stag     %*•        y-^^^^gyi'^^|yi^'^g^^^^F^^'^pjy^^_^^!y
|«Partyifi|ftl^^^fc^^aeI      «
VIP Room available for groups of 8 or more
To purchase tickets call our NYE hotline
604.605.4344 or christine@doolins.ca   r~
Sick of your Family yet?
Come visit your "other" family at the Roxy!
Open right through the season!!
Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day
New Years Day
DECEMBER 21, 2006
ifc«*--g--_-aia_«    BOOKS 8PM
H \__Jr •■■___*■■
1006 Granville St. 1604,605.4357 I cellarvan.com
1006 GRANVILLE ST. 1604.605.4350 i CELLARVAHXllA
38    Decembuary 2006 lied Cat Records
4307Maiit St.
Sunday December 31
Ctteh ^
Club 23 West
Kiss 2006 goodbye at fhe wildest
party in the city! This event wiH
sell out so get tickets early?
Tickets available at:
All Sin City parties
Sanctuary Sundays at Celebrities
New World Designs • Zulu
Little Sister's • Priape
and online at      ^
CiubVtbes.com Wmmm
first SbiGty of 2007!
Saturday Janii a ry 27
Richards On Richards
AH parties hasted by*
Mr. Doric & Ihpse dirty t>Js
Betti Forde & Cathenrma
§nua FETISH DRESS code;
Hew & Used CD's & Ylnyl
ph. 708-9422 * email buddy<»redcat.ca
O    I   v*
? J CO
O      I
cc __. 1
O Q 8
S   I
^^mWK_W^ o
••** tt_ ■
Discorder     39 A QUARTER CENTURY 9T ZULU
Saturday December 16n
marks our 25th anniversary
—many thanks to our most
QTjIFF pi|k|fQ (IF 9fjp8A
Let's celebrate with a sale!!
SaMey December IB*
Jour Prizes!
Fop tte busy lic-isy season we're extended our hoif s.
oiiMiiftv nen o/ii
Attention All Zulu Customers
Hunger Knows No Boundaries
ing everyone to support the
tion to providing food
assistance to those in need. You
the Food Bank on Jan.15* 2007.
items are: Canned Meats, Soups &
Pasta Sauce & Rice, Canned Beans,
s, and Ba
Anemones - s/t
The Battles -
Eager Hands
Destroyer -
Great Aunt Ida - How They Fly
Tim Hecker - Harmony in
Ladyhawk - Ladyhawk
Loscil - Plume
Pink Mountaintops - Axis of Evol
Pride Tiger - Wood, Dhak, Froese,
Various - From Jamaica to
Morninglight -
Destroyer -
Psychic Ills - Dins
The Howling Hex - Nightclub
Version of the Eternal
Robyn Hitchcock and the Venus 3
- Ole Tarantula
Pink Mountaintops - Axis of Evol
The Battles - Tomorrow's Eager
Beach House - s/t
Faust-IV reissue
O.S.T. - Townes Van Zandt: Be
Here To Love Me •'
AH titles 10% OFF until Jainiapy 31*2
Various - Prog is Not a Four
Letter Word
Plastic Crimewave Sound - No
Danava - s/t
Lucio Battisti - Amore E Non
Black Angels - Passover
Circle -Tulikoira
Current 93 - Black Ships Ate The
Let's Get Out of This
Bob Dylan - Modern
Cat Power - The
Destroyer - Destroyer's Rubies
E.S.G. - Keep on Moving
Broadcast - The Future Crayon
White Magic - Dat Rosa Mel Apibus
Thorn Yorke - The Eraser
Sonic Youth - Rather Ripped
Yo La Tengo -1 Am Not Afraid Of You
Chad Vangaalen -
Final Fantasy - He
Poos Clouds
Bonnie Prince Billy -
The Letting Go
Mogwai - Mr. Beast
Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Show Your Bones
The Awkward Stage- Heaven Is For Easy
Benoit Pioulard - Precis
Beach House - s/t
Call Me Poupee - Western Shanghai
Joanna Newsom - Ys
- Destroyer's Rubies
John Phillips-The
Wolfking of LA reissue
Bob Dylan - Modern
Pink Mountaintops - Axis of Evol
Os Mutantes - Jardim Electrico (reissue)
Yo La Tengo -1 Am Not Afraid Of You
Neil Young and Crazy Horse - Live At The
Fillmore East 1970
Belle and Sebastian - The Life Pursuit
Joanna Newsom - Ys
Beach House - s/t
Bone Awl - Not
For Our Feet LP
Sir Richard Bishop -
Plays Sun City Girls 7"
Prurient - Pleasure
Arron Dilloway - Asset Stripping LP
KTL (Stephen O'Malley & Pita) - s/t
Proclamation - Advent Of The Black
The Rita - Tortured Ghosts of Creeks
and Rivers LP
Shearing Pinx - s/t 7°
Mutators -s/t 7
Bardo Pond -
Ticket Crystals
Black Angels -
Circle - Miljard
Indian Jewelry -
Invasive Exotics
Daniel Johnston - Welcome to My
Liars - Drums Not Dead
Juana Molina - Son
Oneida - Happy New Year
Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Live
Fillmore East 1970
Yo La Tengo -1 Am Not Afraid Of You
Shotgun Kunitoki -
Cadence Weapon -
Breaking Kayfabe
Flying Canyon - s/t
Josef K - Entomology
William Basinski - Variations for
Piano and Tape
Ladies Night/No Feeling - split 7
Sonic Youth - Rather Ripped
Tim Hecker - Harmony In Ultraviolet
Kode 9 and Spaceape - Memories of
the Future
Bonnie Prince Billy
- The Letting Go
Peter & The Wolf
- Lightness
Neko Case - Fox
Confessor Brings
The Flood
Fuck Me Dead - Circling Around
Pointed Sticks - Waiting For The
Real Thing reissue
Destroyer - We'll Build Them a
Golden Bridge
Danielson - Ships
Daniel Johnston - Welcome to My
Screaming Eagles - Enemy Gold
Fun 100/Paper Lanterns - split
Califone -
Roots and
Tim Hecker -
Harmony In
Loscil - Plume
Final Fantasy - He Pods Clouds
Swan Lake - Beast Moans
Pink Mountaintops - Axis of Evol
The Battles - Tomorrow's Eager
Scott Walker-The Drift
Stuart Staples - Leaving Songs
Bonnie Prince Billy - The Letting
Destroyer -
Bonnie Prince
Billy-The Letting Go
Beach House - s/t
Akron/Family - Meek Warrior
Grizzly Bear - Yellow House
Swan Lake - Beast Moans
Ariel Pink - House Arrest
Final Fantasy - He Poos Clouds
Arthur Russell - Another Thought
Bughouse 5 -
24 Hour Charlie
Great Aunt Ida
- How They Fly
Blood Meridian
- Kick Up The
Cousin Harley - Hillbilly Madness
Roger Dean Young - Casa
Rae Spoon & Rodney DeCroo -
Trucker's Memorial
Subhumans - New Dark Age
The Breakmen - s/t
The Modelos - s/t
OST - Views
Tenia McCormack
I Crow Is Up
I Ops Dec 9" til Jan 6"
Zulu Records
1972-1976 W 4th Ave
Vancouver, BC
tel 604738.3232
I to Wed   10:30-7=00
I Thurs and Fri 10:30-9:00
I *<& 9:30-6:30


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