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 bi@cot®@0l
August 2006
That double trouble magazine from CITR 101.9 FM IDooesiOf
/CONCERTS^
CANADA
BUY TICKETS AT
hob.ca
2     August 2006 1 a _ j a __M _ \   _| | . jj
h__&_
AUGUST
2006
Editor
David Ravensbergen
Art Director
Will Brown
Copy Editor
Marlo Carpente
RLA Editor
Kimberley Day
Datebook Editor
Chris Little
Review Manager
Jordie Sparkle
Layout & Design
Will Brown
Alanna Scott
Production
Will Brown
Marlo Carpenter
Arthur Krumins
Quinn Omori
David Ravensbergen
Alanna Scott
Caroline Walker
Graeme Worthy
Photo & Illustration
Megan Bourne
Will Brown
Jesse Codling
Melanie Coles
Kimberley Day
Keith Loh
Meathook
Hartmut Schneider
Markus Schopke
Lucas Soi
Volker Stock
Chris von Szombathy
Charts
Luke Meat
Distribution
Richard Chapman
US Distribution
Frankie Rumbletone
Publisher
Student Radio Society
of UBC
Regulars
iiiiiiiiiimimmmimimimiiimimiiiiiiimii
3 The Gentle Art of Editing
David Ravensbergen
4L Cinema Aspirant
Allan Maclnnis
4 Spectres of Discord
by Kat Siddle
5.......RiffRaff
Bryce Dunn
5.™.... Strut, Fret and Flicker
Penelope Mulligan
6 Textually Active
Workers of the World Relax, Epileptic,
Get A Life, and Maybe Later
13...... Mixtape
No Luck Club
14 Calendar
Chris von Szombathy
22 Under Review
The Pipettes, MSTRKRFT, Opus Dai,
Sonic Youth, Caribou, James Figurine,
Greg Graffln, Kinky
24 Real Live Action
■The Raconteurs, Kelly Stoltz, Lotus Child   -
25 CiTR Charts
The Dopest Hits of July 2006
26 Program Guide
The Highlight: Queer FM
Features
IIIIIIIIIIIIIIMIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIMIIIIIIIIIII
The Fine Art of Starting A Record
Club... 07
The End of You: Saying Goodbye to
Sleater-Kinney...07
In Your (Frog) Eyes...09
Carla Bozulich & Thee Silver Mt. Zion
Memorial Orchestra and Tra-La-La
Band...10,11,12
The Age of Electric Empire Part
Two...17
Kick Out the Lights with Jason
Grimmer... is
All Roads Lead To Nomeansno...19
Mixed Apes Project..21
Cover Photography By Michelle Cottam
© DiSCORDER 2006 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
year, to residents of the USA are $15 US; $24 CDN elsewhere. Single copies are $2 (to cover postage).
Please make cheques or money orders payable to DiSCORDER Magazine. DEADLINES: Copy deadline
for the September issue is August 22nd. Ad space is available until August 23rd and can be booked by
calling 604.822.3017 ext 3 or emailing discorder.advertising@gmail.com. Our rates are available upon
request. DiSCORDER is not responsible for loss, damage, or any other injury to unsolicited manuscripts,
unsolicited artwork (including but not limited to drawings, photographs, and transparencies), or any
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.ca or just
pick up a goddamn pen and write #233-6138 SUB Blvd., Vancouver, BC, V6T1Z1, CANADA.
the Gentle Art of Editing
After an oppressively hot month that led
to back stains in Vancouver and civilian
casualties in France, we round off July with
an unusually cool weekend. While it's always
warm and stuffy inside the Discorder office,
my brief forays outside tell me that cold air
fronts are massing on our borders, and the
endless summer is showing signs of letting
up. It's the time of year when back-to-school
advertisements start to pop up unwelcomed,
forcing you to think of clothes shopping and
other unpleasantries. This morning MSN
News advised me that time is running out to
find true love before fall arrives. Suntans are
slated to fade, leaves to wither. It is with a note
of sadness that I make the final changes to the
August issue; next week it'll be time to begin
planning for September in earnest, and once
you start talking about the 'ember months,
summer is as good as done. As Hawksley
Workman comforts, "Autumn's herc.it's time
If you can make out the words through
your tears, this issue just might give you
something to smile about. We have the second
instalment of our ongoing fan fiction saga,
The Super Group, chronicling the imaginary
exploits of Vancouver's music elite as they do
battle with the diabolical Todd Kerns. If all that
indie action leaves you pining for a closer look
at group leader Jason Grimmer, take a stroll a
couple pages over for our farewell to the Zulu
Records heartthrob on the eve of his departure
for Montreal. With that eastern metropole in
mind, check out the Silver Mt. Zion/Carla
Bozulich spread for a look at artistic integrity
in a world of falling bombs and corporate
rock.
Now that your synapses are firing, it's
time to take off those cloud-coloured glasses
and make the most of the summertime that's
left. There's still a window of opportunity to
experiment with new ways of living before
September comes barging through town with
its list of schedule-filling commitments. To that
end we present Mixed Apes, a free-form music-
sharing project that aims to connect isolated
music lovers across Vancouver. Reading
about music is interesting, but it can breed
passivity; Mixed Apes, and its sister-story the
Record Club, encourage a more participatory
approach to enjoying the aural arts. Check out
~www.discorder.ca/mixedapes for details, and
chase away the end-of-summer blues.
David Ravensbergen, Editor
discordered@gmail.com
'
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1
I CINEMa ASPIRANT
Allan Maclnnis
is cinema food for your soul, and is your soul hungry?
Cinema Aspirant offers glimpses of gems to be rescued
from the wreckage of your local video store.
Kinji Fukasaku and
Battle Royale
IT warmed my heart to see my high school
students in Japan reading Koushun Takami's
dystopian thriller, Battle Royale. The film
adaptation, in which students are forced to murder
each other as part of a sadistic game created by
the government, had caused a huge fuss, since
newspapers and school boards there were fretting
about the phenomenon of ijime, or bullying. It seems
certain kids had harassed weaker fellow students
(almost always the misfits) to such extremes that
there had been well-publicized teen  suicides.
| The phenomenon was influenced by the extreme
pressures to conform which students encountered
in school, so a movie in which teenagers kill
teenagers at the behest of their teachers struck a
vulnerable chord. Special government meetings
were held on whether the movie should be banned,
and kids under the age of 15 were forbidden entry
to theatres. Anyone could read the book, however,
and I recall covertly whispering in the ear of one
young reader that she was on the right track and
shouldn't trust any of her teachers, ever, which got
a smile. I didn't realize, at that point, that Battle
Royale (2000) was the last completed feature
of one of the masters of Japanese cinema, Kinji
Fukasaku.
Battle Royale aside, Kinji Fukasaku (1930-
2003) is best remembered now for a series of
gritty gangster films made in the 1970s, many of
which starred Bunta Sugawara. Sugawara is to
crime movies in Japan what Robert de Niro and
Clint Eastwood are in America; chances are if you
buy a book on Yakuza movies, you'll find Bunta's
expressive mug somewhere on the cover. Battles
without Honour and Humanity (1973), the first
volume in the Yakuza Papers series, remains my
favourite of the films from this period, and features
all of Fukasaku's trademarks: frenetic editing,
deft hand-held camerawork, freeze-frames on the
violence, and a level of realism, cynicism, and
social criticism previously unknown to Japanese
me films. Sugawara plays a soldier returning
fapan after the war. He finds corruption, crime,
and black marketeering everywhere, and joins
the Yakuza partly out of sheer need for work, but
o because their code of honour appeals to him.
Eventually, after years of bloodshed, he becomes
disillusioned, learning the hard way that for many,
the Yakuza code is just a false front behind which
they serve their own interests. Later episodes in the
series bog down a bit in internecine maneuverings.
but the impact of these films on contemporary
Japanese cinema cannot be overestimated.
There are many other great Fukasaku
films from this period. Street Mobster (1972)
predates the Yakuza Papers, but has many of the
same merits, though it seems a bit heavier on
brutish exploitation than social criticism, and
feminist viewers may find themselves guffawing
in contempt at times. Starring a decidedly anti-
heroic Sugawara, this one is more entertaining
for its excesses and its startling style than its story.
Another interesting early venture. Under the Flag of
the Rising Sun (1972), finds Fukasaku in dramatic
mode, showing the plight of Japanese soldiers
during the Pacific campaign. It tackles taboo
I subject matter like cannibalism with the verve and
directness of exploitation cinema, but it's a serious
film, unafraid of controversy.
I am by no means a Fukasaku expert. His
resume includes a survival horror video game
Clock Tower 3, and over 60 features, most of which
have not been distributed here. Aspirants may
be amused to note that Fukasaku directed the
Japanese portions of Torat Tora! Tora! (1970), a US/
I Japanese co-production showing both sides of the
attack on Pearl Harbor. He also worked with Yukio
±    August 2006
Mishima on an adaptation of his campy detective
thriller, Black Lizard (1968), starring Mishima
and female impersonator Akihiro Maruyama.
He directed the international co-production The
Green Slime (1968), in which the crew of a space
station battle tentacled, one-eyed aliens after
blowing up an asteroid that threatens to destroy
Earth. Another of his gangster films, Graveyard
of Honour (1975), inspired a remake by no less
than Takashi Miike, and is considered one of his
grimmest works.
Despite these worthy contributions to cinema
history, my warmest feelings are reserved for Battle
Royale. Never mind the exploitation trappings—
Battle Royale is an anti-authoritarian parable par
excellence. The ultimate message of the film is that
for social change to happen, children have to work
together to resist the "game" they're forced to play.
Though no post-Columbine American distributor
has been willing to touch it, rights to remake the
film with an English-speaking cast have been
recently purchased by New Line Cinema, much to
the distress of fans of the original.
Fukasaku died of prostate cancer just as he
began shooting the sequel, Battle Royale 2 (2003).
Finished by Fukasaku's son, Kenta, it's a mixed
blessing, which is most likeable for the extremity
of its political confusion (the young rebels who
reject the "game" end up seeking refuge in
Afghanistan among their friends in al-Qaeda!)
The battle sequences, blatantly ripping off the look
of the Normandy invasion sequences of Saving
Private Ryan—a big hit in Japan—suggest that
Japanese teenagers have a very strange fantasy
life indeed. I'll be playing both Battle Royale films
back-to-back at Blim (www.blim.ca) on August
18th. Fans of thought-provoking, blood-spattered
excess should be sure to attend.    £|
IPS;^ discover
TheV-Word
Discorder is a lot like The L-Word—but not in the way that you think.
The L-Word has shown me a new way of
watching TV. I'm slightly ashamed to admit
it, but it's true. It has nothing to do with the show's
(dubious) portrayal of queer women. I don't watch
it because it's well-written, because it's uot, and
the acting isn't amazing either. I will say that I
enjoy melodrama and make-out scenes as much
as the next person, but stiJl. these are just gravy.
If you ignore the writing, the characters and the
storylines, The L-Word becomes strangely relevant
to my life. For one thing, it's filmed in my town.
I know that this isn't a particularly special
feature. Lots of things are filmed in Vancouver.
But it's not just the locations, the residential
neighborhoods that are supposed to be LA but
are obviously East Van. It's that whoever's behind
The L-Word has filled the show with references to
Vancouver. A surprising number of Vancouver
bands have been featured on its soundtrack,
many of them more than once. Songs by Kinnie
Starr, Stinkmitt, the Organ, Coco Love Alcorn, the
Cinch, Sweatshop Union, Kia Kadiri, the Be Good
Tanyas and Ridley Bent have been featured in
episodes during the show's three-season run. You
don't need to listen close to hear the shout-out to
the Vancouver arts scene.
But it's even more subtle than that: a couple
of times I've hit pause on the DVD to point out a
picture by some Vancouver-based visual artist
in the background of a shot—"There! Look,
just to the left of Kit's head. It's an I Braineater
cartoon space lady I" The sight of this familiar
print hung in a fictional lesbian hotspot sparked
a Discorderly memory for me: when I first became
Discorder editor in 2004, the production manager
and I spent an afternoon cleaning out the
magazine's office. Under a stack of press releases
I found several I Braineater prints that had been
candidates for the Discorder 20th Anniversary
issue (February 2003). Unsure of what do to with
them, I took them home and put them up in my
room. The notion that my own bedroom, an old
Discorder cover and 27ie L-Word could collide like
this, particularly when Vancouver is not a highly-
referenced city like New York or Nashville, blew
lind.
I like to think about collisions like this.
We spend a great deal of time watching TV and
immersing ourselves in art but rarely think about
the ways that we do it. My friend (and former
Discorder co-worker) Dory Kornfeld has a theory
about television and film that I've always found
strangely compelling. As she watches TV or movies,
Dory likes to imagine that the character an actor
plays in one role is actually the same character the
actor plays in every role. The fun comes in trying
to fit the disparate aspects of the character—
personality, backstory and historical context—
together. Once she wrote me an email saying "I've
been having a little bit of trouble watching West
Wing lately, because Josh Lyman, who is the deputy
chief of staff is ALSO the stepdad in The Sisterhood
of the Travelling Pants movie." Adopting this theory
makes any movie or TV show, no matter how lame,
intensely discussable. Imagine our delight when
we realized that Taryn Manning, who plays the
skinny blonde prostitute in Hustle & Flow, is also
Britney Spears' pregnant best friend in Crossroadsl
(Looks like things really went downhill when
Britney and Co. finally got to LA!)
After watching a lot of TV filmed in
Vancouver, I discovered that this theory can be
applied to locations as well as actors/characters.
Consider: In The L-Word, the "Bette" character
works at an art gallery located at the Elliot Louis
Gallery on West 2nd. The same location is used in
an episode of Battlestar Galactica as a doctor's office
that the President of the Universe (or whatever)
visits before some sexy robots destroy the earth.
You can see space-ships flying over Kitsilano and
everything! Initially, it seems like the Battlestar
Galactica's location scout chose this space for its
"futuristic" look (if, in the future, all buildings
are designed in the style of Arthur Erikson, you
That Schmaltzy Magazine from February 2003
can count me out right now). But, when you
consider the Kornfeld Theorem of Character-
Specific Narrative Continuity (my title for it, not
hers), this gallery suddenly becomes a really old
building—a charming old heritage building that
Bette from The L-Word used to work in back in the
21st century.
I know that Vancouver's economy is
driven by TV and film production, especially when
it comes to cheaply-produced sci-fi. But filming
in Vancouver doesn't just direct money into the
Ovaltine Cafe or the JJ Bean on Commercial Drive,
or bring royalties and exposure to Vancouver
bands. It even goes beyond that crazy thrill
that we Canadians feel when we see something
recognizably Canadian on the television (like, say,
Koerner Library in the background of a Pokemon
ad). When we combine our local knowledge with
Dory Kornfeld's theory, we have suddenly a whole
new reason to watch lame TV, which is all anyone
really wants to do any way. - Bryce Dunn
We got a whole hodge-podge of musical bar-rage
for you this month, so let's kick things off with
a couple of R&B roustabouts, Screamin' Jay Hawkins
and Esquerita, squarin' off with a side a piece on a
recent single. SJ literally moans and groans through
his 1962 hit, "I Hear Voices," while backing band
The Chickenhawks conjure the spirits with a spooky
backbeat. While this has a certain novelty appeal, it
ranks high on the fun meter and deserves more spins.
His counterpart Esquerita, the vintage voola himself,
pounds the pearly white keys to the gospel standard,
"Didn't it Rain," rocketing this tune into hip-shaking
orbit. No slouches themselves, soulful girl group The
Clovertones provide shimmering vocal accompaniment to Esquerita's howl. We've got ourselves a winner
here, folks. (Norton Records, Box 646 Cooper Station
New York, NY 10276 www.nortonrecords.com).
The Johns boast members of several SoCal punk
outfits among their ranks (Die Hunns, The Crowd, The
Grabbers et al.), and as the old saying goes, the sum
should be greater than the parts. While this statement
holds true, it seems a slight on the aforementioned
bands that this "supergroup" sounds better than their
progenitors. What we have here is three tunes of punk
laced with rock overtones wrapped in crisp production,
everything evenly placed in the mix with vocals that
don't grate on the nerves and actually carry a melody.
"In Tune" starts the ball rolling, bringing to mind the
best of what Electric Frankenstein has to offer, while
"Crapped Out" and "Wanna Die" are two blasts of
beach-punk that are as thick and long-lasting as the
tan on George Hamilton, perfect for the skatepark or
basement TV party. The Johns are on a mission to surf
and destroy. (Anko Records, P.O. Box 1799 Costa Mesa
CA USA 92628 www.ankorecords.com).
With a name hke Pissed Jeans you have to
leave your expectations at the door and expect the
unexpected. So upon first listen, I was not so surprised
to hear heavy, plodding sludgecore straight outta
Philadelphia that would please fans of Killdozer and
The Melvins. "Don't Need Smoke to Make Myself
Disappear" is a slow exercise in patience that this
reviewer was not quite up for, listening while holed
up in a studio with no air conditioning. "Loveclown"
fared a little better, but its subject matter creeped me
out, as I thought about that CSI episode when Grisham
(sic) and co. investigate a murder where the suspect in
question has a sexual fetish for clowns—ugghhh! I'll
never look at Krusty or Bozo the same way again. (Sub
Pop Records, P.O. Box 20367 Seattle WA USA 98102
www.subpop.com).
Let's end this column on a much happier note
with a split single from Vancouver's Bella and their
friends Columbus from Edmonton. Bella you should
already know as that cuter-than-cute foursome (now
threesome) who released the electro-pop opus Pretty
Mess back in 2004, to the adoration of fans and critics
alike. They garnish their side of the split with a new
track, "Didn't Mean to Break Our Love," melding Client
and O.M.D. into a little more subdued, but no less
dancey number. Their remix of "Crystal Tears" (from
the aforementioned album) pickpockets The Spoons'
"Nova Heart" for musical inspiration. Columbus opt
for the no-nonsense approach with "Grey on Blue,"
mining the Teenage Fanclub songbook with some
jangly guitar hooks and bouncing bass lines. While
I haven't heard the original, it appears "You Know
it's True" has been given an electro-funk makeover,
which should appeal to the club kids who like a little
snap and crackle with their pop. (Pop Echo Records,
12424 113th Ave. Edmonton AB Canada T5M 2W5
www.popecho.com).
Thanks for tuning in, go enjoy the summer while
it lasts I   $|
STRUT FRET
AND FLICKER
Penelope Mulligan
THE SHOES THAT WERE DANCED
TO PIECES, city-.skinned
There was a time when even the
most artful and well-produced
site theatre was far enough below
mainstream radar that it could do
pretty much what it wanted before the
wrong people noticed. Prohibitions on
unlicensed venues were either easily
navigated or quietly ignored, while
clearance for use of public space was
either simple or largely unnecessary.
In many ways, the genre has become
a victim of its own success, attracting
civic attention as well as practitioners
who aren't overly concerned by the
adulterations that come with a higher
profile. If two of last month's events
were pointing toward the future of
site performance, then we need to be
worried. One of them can be forgiven;
the other not. We start with the latter.
city:skinned
Dancing on the Edge
Friday July 7
When this piece was originally
performed in the UK back in 2002, it
might well have done justice to its creator's vision. Even as recently as last
summer, its locale (London's King's
Cross area) was a virtual building site
with abandoned goods yards, shabby
commercial streets and secret gardens
gasping for air amid the welter of construction. Four years ago, it was still a
flaneur's paradise of hookers and hidden
places. In London parlance, it wasn't yet
a "crunchy" area. Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, on the other hand, is just
that—a place where gentrification is
butting heads with poverty. In re-setting her urban expose there, Carolyn
Deby almost became part of the encroachment, self-consciously serving
up packets of grunge and glitz to a controlled herd of culture tourists.
That said, many of the sites on
the tour were swell. Evocative and
blatant by turns, they already spoke
volumes about the collision course on
which planners and developers have
set our neighbourhoods. Sadly, Deby's
five dancers didn't animate or reveal
anything. In their lime green t-shirts
and matching wigs, they were in the
way from the start. In a disused funeral
parlour for instance, re-booted as a memorial to the wilderness once covering
urban ground, I had to tune them out
as they marched around slamming
doors and bellowing fatuous things.
Much more engaging were the dried
trees hanging upside down from the
ceiling and the open coffin containing
baby evergreens. (It was here that we
were given earplugs to be worn for the
rest of the tour—an interesting touch,
since all sound became as muffled and
distant as when one is drifting into
sleep.) Approaching The Coffee Shop on
Gore Street, one of the performers began hugging a tree. I would like to have
mourned my favourite lo-fi caff in peace
(the long-time owner recently sold up),
but a television set on which agonized
modern dance footage played stood in
the open doorway, blocking my view of
the gutted interior.
Maple Tree Square was teeming
with night lifers as our advance guard
of green thingies charged along flitting
in and out of doorways and hanging
dutifully from whatever could be hung
from. By that time, our whole unit was
feeling ridiculous. One of the dancers ended up in Hunt and Gather bou-
city:skinned
tique doing a solo (more contemporary
agony) while another scrawled on the
shop's front, "We have lost the ability
to name our hunger." "Speak for yourself," I thought, as a couple of homies
sloped past carrying plates of food from
a nearby soup line. As we crossed Hastings, Pigeon Park was in an uproar.
"What the fuck's going on? Is this some
kind of science fiction deal?" A grizzled
geezer ran ahead to join the dancers as
they twisted and rolled in the forecourt
of Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Gardens. He caught
on fast and gave a great performance.
There was a quantum shift when
we boarded a school hus for a long,
pleasant but rather inexplicable ride
past the beaches and into Stanley Park.
Was this meant to underline the fact
that the Downtown Eastside exists in
the same city as the leafy luxuries of the
West End? When we began walking in
the woods, a connection occured to me
as I recalled how the police transported
drug users from the DTES to the park
where they beat the shit out of them. But
performers were busy doing things with
trees, so I didn't bother sharing.
If Deby's goal was the "psycho-
geographic, unguided tour of time and
space," mentioned in the programme, it
would have been better to simply take
the audience on a walk than to perform
empty gestures in cool places. Our silent
steward was like a gentle Mephistophe-
les and was all the guide we needed. The
sites would have done the rest. In fact,
many people do this all by themselves,
becoming conscious performers in a
field of possibilities that the city offers
up to them. The Lettristes called it the
derive and it's a shame to see it packaged
and dumbed down in the name of art.
The Shoes That Were Danced to
Pieces
Boca Del Lupo
Stanley Park
Thursday July 13
Although very much a family event,
this performance set in the woods had
enough cheek to be charming and a
rustic feel that transported the audience
to an era when outdoor theatre was the
The story contained the usual fairytale flotsam: princesses, a powerful
king, a challenge and a commoner who
rises to it. Its telling was more unique in
that we tramped through the forest in
pursuit of the players and a good deal of
the action took place above our heads.
Whether circus-trained or not, the actors had sufficient chops to dangle,
swing and shimmy down ropes with
graceful insouciance. And props go to
riggers Tallis Kirby and John Popkin,
whose technical innovation ensured
magic and performer safety in equal
measure.
Some of the images were memorable: two singing crones who see-sawed
high in the trees in counterweight; and
a giant mesh hammock full of roiling
princesses who escaped, one by one,
into the forest to dance their titular
shoes to bits.
The Shoes That Were Danced to Pieces
So how did this show feed my misgivings about where site performance
could be heading? First of all, the audience was too big. Bums in seats—or
in this case, feet on the ground—are
an indication of success, but the crowd
took forever to shuffle from scene to
scene and wasn't worth the damage to
continuity. Secondly, one could feel the
show's creators straining for a G -rat ing.
Problem is that being all things to all
people requires a lot of interesting edges
to be sanded off. Writer James Fagan
Tait and director Sherry J. Yoon are
more than capable of giving good edge
and I only wish that Boca had mounted
a more grown-up version of its outdoor
spectacular.   S —TEXTUALLY ACTIVE —
Workers of the World Relax, Epileptic, Get A Life, and Maybe Later
Workers of the World Relax
by Conrad Schmidt
Along with the World Naked Bike Ride and Work Less Party,
add an economic manifesto, Workers of the World Relax, to Conrad
Schmidt's eye-popping feats of activism. In language "simple enough
for even the most intelligent of academics," he depicts the world
economy as an oil-addicted, consumerist race to the bottom, where
workers learn the efficient production of inefficient, environmentally-
ruinous goods. Reduce the work week, he proposes, regulate an
industrial slow-down, and we can lower unemployment, curb climate
change, and revalue our notion of work. In other words, "Make less
STUFF, do more LIVING."
The Marxish title, pocket size, and pamphleteer style of
Schmidt's essays imply, in the words of UBC professor Christopher
Shaw, "dangerous, radical stuff." Nevermind that Dr. Shaw is an
ophthalmologist; you have to admire Schmidt's ambition. Here is
a software programmer turned grassroots roustabout (and CiTR
host), who divorced his car, quit his landfill-stacking job, and wrote
a treatise on how to create more time for civil society, a healthy
environment, "music, art, culture, family, community and sanity."
Workers of the WorldRelax is red, but not a straight-up manifesto.
As Schmidt explains, it's also not the book that his supporters
urged him to write: a colourful memoir of protests, rallies and
activism. Instead, Schmidt set out to briefly survey the well-covered
ground of such popular economics books as Jared Diamond's Collapse
and Ronald Wright's A Short History of Progress. In his opening, he
even joins Diamond and Wright on Easter Island: the poignant case
study of a civilization which exhausted its resources to carve gigantic
stone heads. Was there ever a group of Easter Island activists, Schmidt
wonders, who were branded 'radical leftists' for "not understanding
the pressures of a stone statue economy?"
You could as easily read authoritative, popular writers like
Diamond and Wright on economic traps. You could read Jane Jacobs
on climate change, Robert Putnam on declining social capital, or
Tim Flannery on global warming. Why pick up Workers of the World
Perhaps you were titillated by the naked bike ride, or amused by
the gall of a Work Less Party. Or, maybe you are really intrigued by
the proposed 35 hour work week. I bought the Work Less calendar. I
am also self-propelled, a vegetarian, and excited by the possibility,
already attempted by France and Germany, of legislating a maximum
number of work hours. So I was a bit disappointed to find the
French case relegated to an appendix, along with a half-researched
introduction to the economic nitty-gritty of reducing production in
an economy which may or may not have a fixed amount of labour.
This is nit-picky—the book is not meant to be in-depth, and
Schmidt points the way to further research. Workers of the World
Relax proj_asf58|a polemic of gusto and common sense. Just look
at Schmidt's back-page photo: the wicker chair, his open collar,
and the cu|gji| coffee perched jauntily on his knee make up a
movement on charisma alone. Inside, the sincerity of his motives are
undeniable. His personal, Office Space-like account of negotiating
his first four-day work week is inspiring. I would happily reside in
a city where residents are granted space in community gardens for
each car they give up.
Soon, though, the slips of grammar, spelling and the occasional
lack of fact-checking build to a nagging doubt. There is also a
frustrating lack of attention to Canada, while the sexier politics of the
U.S. Empire are over-played. Although it is not a white paper of the
Work Less Party, I had hoped for more local focus from a grassroots
politician whose party will field a candidate for prime minister.
The main trouble is, Schmidt is too ideological to play an
economist. "The lives of all seven billion people in this world revolve
around Western civilization's love affair with cars," is the sort of
hyperbole I might enjoy. But tell me that "the World Trade Centre
Mraari__ _re a casualty of oil dependence," and I feel the walls are
closing on a very narrow picture of the world.
"We might very well have unlimited clean energy in the future,"
says Schmidt in an over-bearing rejection of business-friendly, green
technology, "This will give us the capacity to completely destroy the
planet." For me, the argument is out of measure by this point, and the
fun's gone out of the book. All of a sudden I'm reading the academic-
sounding crib notes of whoever painted "Technology won't save
you!" on the Cambie street bridge and thinking, "Okay, okay, but if
you needed a defibrillator..."
Andy Hudson
Inkstuds
Epileptic by David B., Get a Life and Maybe Later by Dupuy and Berberian
Going through my stacks this
month, I pulled out four recent
English translations of international comics which stood out for their
excellence. By chance, three were
French and the last was Italian, but
was previously only available here in
a French edition. These comics show
outstanding craftsmanship, and each
of the cartoonists has a different way
of telling a captivating, must-read
story. International comics is a very
wide genre, but a few key works will
help you find your way.
Of recent acclaim is cartoonist David B, a.k.a. Pierre-Frangois
Beauchard. His chief d'oeuvre is called Epileptic, and it was recently
released in North America by a Random House subsidiary. Pantheon
Books. With Chip Kidd at the helm, Pantheon Books has proved
to be one of those publishers whose releases are pure gofrJ*&fe«r
artists of Pantheon fame include Chris Ware, Daniel Clowes and Art
Spiegelman. With such high-karat colleagues, David B. was worth
checking out based solely on his Pantheon cred. Epileptic is about
a young boy dealing with the onset of epilepsy in his oIdeisfeofl|e||
coupled with the onset of a personal, creative explosion.
David B's art is an enigma. His tight, black and white lines give
the impression of woodblock prints. His art is solid, but infused with
a mad creativity. Epileptic is a nearly 400-page tome, with enough
potential to be stacked alongside Blacfc Hole, Jimmy Corrigan, and
Maus. The Kiinstlerroman storyline will be easily embraced by
academic literati. In addition to Epileptic, David B. has appeared in
the Fantagraphics anthology Mome, as well as a portion of the Ignatz
series of oversized comics, headed by the Italian master Igort. So far
David has released two issues of Babel with the Ignatz imprint; issue
two was released within the last few months, once again by the ever
excellent FaBffgraphics.
A short story in a Drawn & Quarterly caught my eye a couple
years ago—it was the first work of Dupuy and Berberian Inaa seen.
It stood out as a comic filled with
joy and optimism: rare finds in an
industry notorious for self-loathers.
Just this month, Drawn & Quarterly
published two books by the French
duo; they can be read independently,
but are incomparably stronger as a
pair. The first, Get a Life, is a reprint
of volumes 1, 2, and 3 of the French-
language Mr. Jean series, about a
Parisian author's daily struggles and
exploits. The book is both charming
and full of surprise. At first glance,
Mr. Jean seems to live an idyllic life,
but the book is in fact an excellent illustration of daily existence in
beau Paris. The characters are compelling. Mr. Jeaafffie struggling
author, is accompanied by a flaky best friend with whom he shares
nothing but a long friendship. Then there are the intrusive building
managers: a pair of middle-aged spinsters who think of Mr. Jean as a
constant aberration in their daily lives.
The style of Get a Life is reminiscent ©i&|g6's Tintin, but with a
persona I can really only compare to Michel Rabagliati's Paul. Rarely
do you come across works in the avant-garde with so much joy and
inspiration. The other work Dupuy and Berberian issued by Drawn
& Quarterly ipJMMuhe Later. While the artls|l%eHaborate on Mr. Jean,
Maybe Later finds them producing work independently. Originally a
journal to record their creative process, Maybe Later provides insight
into the inner demons which drive the unique career of cartoonists.
To discover more great comics, check out the Inkstuds show, every
Thursday at 2:00 PM, as well as our hack-catalogue of interviews @
www.crowncommission.com/inkstuds.   4^
Robin McConnell 9
Get A Life by Dupuy and Berberian, Drawn & Quarterly The Fine Art of Starting
a Record Club
by BRock Thiessen
ILLUSTRATIONS BY MELANIE COLES
These days it seems that everyone is starting
some kind of club. There are knitting clubs, book
clubs, juggling clubs—you name it, but the bee's
knees is the record club. The basics of such a club
are quite simple. Your group gathers once a month
at a member's residence. Each person picks 3 songs
of a reasonable length (no 20-minute Can jams),
and everyone takes turns playing their choices. The
members then involve themselves in enlightening
discussions related to each track, and at the end
of it all you burn the picks onto a CD-R for future
nostalgia. If done properly this can be an enriching
experience, but like anything of real value, there is
protocol, and there is procedure.
Before you can even tackle the complexities of
starting your own record club, you will first need to
recruit members. This task is not to be taken lightly,
for these members will be the heart and soul of your
club. It's good to have a wide range of individuals,
which could include people representing strong
Christian views or earth-based religions, bike
couriers, musicians, farmers, people with dreadlocks
or stay-at-home moms. If all your members have
similar attitudes and viewpoints, your discussions
will be short and lacklustre, and your club may
fade into oblivion very quickly. Also, feel free to
swear in members through a series of ritualistic
ceremonies. A collective blood-shedding is always
a sure-fire method. These rituals will instill a sense
of camaraderie among your members and ensure
dedication. Tests of endurance, knowledge, and/or
dexterity may also be used to weed out unwanted
members. Having members name such things as the
first 15 singles by The Fall usually does the trick.
Onceyouhavecarefully
• hand-picked your members,
: you will then need to hold
■. your first meeting to discuss
j the rules or standards
j your club will follow. Your
| agenda should focus on the
inner workings of the {club and address all possible
scenarios that could arise in the future. Cover such
areas as when you should meet and where; what
should be done about holidays and Christmas;
members' feelings about smoking, allergies,
tardiness and pets; what should be done if a person
talks out of turn; and who's bringing the chips. Also,
have one person deemed Club Nerdlinger and have
him/her keep historical records of songs played.
You may also want to consider hiring a professional
facilitator to moderate meetings. Not only will
a leader help ensure that a fulfilling, balanced
conversation takes place, but he or she could also
help your group decide which songs to play (or even
choose the songs for you). These club guidelines
must be taken with the utmost seriousness, and if a
member cannot find the competency to follow them,
their presence should be barred as soon as possible.
After all, this is not some drunken weekend Softball
team—it's a record dim.
The next crucial Step in having a tremendous
record club is engaging and gripping discussions.
TheEndofYou
Saying Goodbye to
by Quinn Omori
IT sort of felt like getting dumped. Maybe that's a melodramatic way to
talk about a band breaking up, but that's how it felt, honestly. If you're
the type of person who has a deep connection with the music you love,
there are definite parallels between the two seemingly disparate events. No
more new experiences to look forward to. No more dates (shows). There's
nothing new to discover.
After eleven years as a band, Sleater-Kinney have decided to go on indefinite
hiatus. The upcoming summer shows will be our last. As of now, there are no
plans for future tours or recordings...
They aren't necessarily gone forever, but the words "indefinite hiatus"
don't bode well for a future in the world of indie rock. Fugazi have been
silent since vowing the same thing shortly after releasing The Argument in
2001. My Bloody Valentine is still AWOL over a decade after announcing
its own break. "Yeah, there's not a zero percent chance of us getting back
together, but don't count on it."
Sleater-Kinney is the first band to break my heart. I can recall the
demise of countless bands, but I didn't really love them. I was, like almost
every other music fan at the time, hit with the news that Kurt Cobain died,
but I was only twelve. I didn't grow up listening to Nirvana; when they
were finished, I still had a lot of growing up left to do.
Sleater-Kinney's career spans the 11 years between my 14th and 25th
birthdays. While I wasn't aware of them from day one, my fandom stretches
back far enough that their records serve as the soundtrack to my transition
from adolescence into adulthood. Sleater-Kinney dropped into my life at
such a formative moment that their songs now remind me of some of my
fondest, sharpest, and even most painful memories. I'm not alone.
If you keep tabs on many internet music sites, you've already got an
idea of the type of adoration that Corin Tucker, Carrie Brownstein and
Janet Weiss inspired. "My favourite band" and "with great sadness," were
phrases that were bandied about in various publications. Sub Pop described
The Woods—now the band's swan song—as "one of the best rock records
[they'd] ever released." When posting the news of the band's demise.
Pitchfork scribe Amy Phillips confidently stated, "America's greatest rock
i has called it quits."
I know there are thousands of other fans out there, many of whom
are much savvier than I, able to boast that they've been listening since the
group's earliest days. But I've still always considered Sleater-Kinney "my
band." The obsession I held for Pearl Jam in my younger days was spawned
when someone in elementary school gifted me with a dubbed copy of
Ten (plus, back then they were as ubiquitous as Nirvana). The Jesus and
Mary Chain featured prominently beside Pavement on a mixtape an older
cousin sent me. One of my best friends from high school and I would waste
Saturday afternoons listening to his brother's hip hop records. Sleater-
Kinney, on the other hand, were the band that I would slip on mixtapes,
that I would insist on playing for friends, that I dragged not one, but two
girlfriends to go see against their will (which may partially explain why
they're exes), and that I would feverishly defend in conversation. Not that
they needed much defending.
On August 11th and 12th, Sleater-Kinney is set to play what will
likely be their final shows together, in Portland, Oregon. The $12 tickets
are currently going for hundreds of dollars on EBay, with fans making
the pilgrimage to the band's hometown from as far away as Europe. I'll be
driving down with a friend for the weekend, where we'll join a couple of
thousand other people, who've all come to share a few last moments with
a loved one.
But perhaps my original break-up analogy wasn't so apt after all.
Relationships have a tendency to hobble along to their logical conclusion,
slowly losing whatever magic they once had before someone finally makes
the wise decision to cut the chord. By contrast, Sleater-Kinney is stepping
out on a high note. A scrappy yet endearing self-tided debut, six critically
celebrated records that display a diversity most bands wouldn't dare to
attempt, and an unparalleled live reputation are left behind, free of the
tarnish of tours where they merely went through the motions, or albums
that were only shadows of former greatness. Nobody breaks up with a
significant other while things are on the up and up, but "America's greatest
rock band" is going out on top.
Thanks for all the music, ladies.   _*
Exploring such matters as the artist's vision and
intended message is always a good way to get a
discussion going. Is the artist being pessimistic,
prophetic, cautionary, satirical, venomous and/
or cathartic? What kind of emotional place was
the songwriter in when he/she wrote the song?
Are there any symbols of political, cultural or
religious significance, such as a flag, rose, or
thorns? Another way to guarantee a spellbinding
discourse is choosing a thematic thread that runs
through the entire club meeting. Picking themes
such as songs that remind you of the importance
of friendship/family, songs that boost self-esteem,
or even something as simple as songs with wicked
drums can prove to be entirely rewarding. Also,
make sure everyone participates in the discussion.
If a question is asked, everyone should contribute
in the round robin. If you see someone being left
out, prompt them for their opinion and consider
giving them a hug.
The last element
needed to have a
successful record club
is to lend your members a hand when it
comes to dealing with
rejection. If you dislike
certain songs, never
blame the person who proposed them. Pooh-
poohing a member because of their poor choice
will only lead to shame and sorrow. Encourage
your members to replace feelings of rejection wtth
a sense of anticipation for future success. This
process increases the odds of acceptance and keeps
the psyche in good shape, for mental wellness is
key to a good record club.
At this point all that is left is to have a
member mix the tracks from the meeting onto a
CD-R to preserve your record club experience for
years to come. All members should have little
difficulty with this task. If they can't string the
tracks into a decent mix CD then they shouldn't
be in your club anyway. Get rid of them. Schedule
club meetings for a different night, and tell them
the club has disbanded.
Now get out there and start yourself a club. ■
IN 2004. MICHAEL FRANTI DECIDED TO WALK HIS TALK' AND TRAVELED
TO THE WAR ZONES OF IRAD. ISRAEL AND THE OCCDPIED PALESTINIAN
TERRITORIES. THIS WASN'T A USO GREEN ZONE SPONSORED VISIT FRANTI
TRAVELED TO THE CORE OF THE RED-ZONED. WAR TORN NEIGHSORHOODS
IN THE MIDDLE ERST WITH HIS COITAR, VIDEO CAMERAS ANO THE INTENT
TO EXPERIENCE FIRST HMM THE HMM COST OF WAR.
OUT OF THIS JOURNEY. FRANTI HAS CREATED
A COMPELLING DOCUMENTARY FILM TITLED
"I KNOW I'M NOT ALONE" AND AN INSPIRING,
UPLIFTING NEW ALDUM OF ORIGINAL SONGS
TITLED "YELL FIRE!"
DVD AND CD IN STORES NOW
anti.com   spearheadyibrations.com   pHfire.net
ftliilii
i
ss
if  ^
THE Wn
if
i
$4 JAGERMEISiliE
[ i9__6RANVILLE ST.. 604.669.32HI
o     August 2006 prog eses
IN YOUR (FROG) EYES
TALKING TO FROG EYES' CAREY MERCER ABOUT EPIC MUSIC,
PERSONALITY CULTS, AND BEING MARRIED TO THE DRUMMER.
by May ana C. Slobodian Photographs by Jesse Codling of Daytrotter.com
Trying to make Frog Eyes' Carey Mercer talk about nis music
makes me feel like a schoolyard bully holding down the quiet
kid and forcing him to recite the alphabet backwards. His sentences
are book-ended with "sort of," "I guess," "maybe," and "I don't know,"
and he follows his most serious, introspective remarks with bright
laughter and a shake of the head.
If he's nervous, he has every right. For the last few years, Frog
Eyes has been implicated in much of the hype engulfing independent
Canadian bands. Their connection to Destroyer and fellow Victorians
Wolf Parade has something to do with it. Frog Eyes has recorded with
Destroyer and performed as his backing band, Parader Spencer Krug
is a sometimes member of the band, and Mercer is working with both
of them on a new project, called Swan Lake.
But when it comes to wooing critics, Frog Eyes' music has
everything to do with it. Journalists such as myself love to get all
up in there with accounts of the "rasping, contorting spectacle" of
Mercer's "headless chicken deliveries" (Pitchfork). We inevitably
wax romantic regarding "Bobcat Goldthwait's evil twin" and their
"cabaret, straight from Hell's floor show" (Popmatters). Critics—and
audiences, on the band's somewhat rare tours off Vancouver Island—
have little negative to say about the four-and-sometimes-fivesome,
but Mercer must enter every interview wondering, "How the hell am
I going to come across in this one?"
Seeing the sleepy blond man ride up in a blue sweatshirt and
bike helmet, I try to imagine a "maniacal, falsetto preacher foretelling
end times" (CokemachinegIow.com) and "frantically spewing
undecipherable genius into the microphone" (Brooklynvegan). If
I hadn't seen Mercer in dark, blazing glory with Frog Eyes, I might
think they'd sent the wrong man.
Seated at a damp picnic table, I ask about Frog Eyes' new EP
The Future is InUr-Disdplinary or Not At All, due to be released on
Spanish label Acuarela Discos, and their fourth full-length album,
out next February. He fiddles with his pockets, watches kids in
the playground, and somehow appears friendly while constantly
avoiding eye contact.
Discorder: Where is the ideal place to listen to your new EP?
Mercer: (Long pause) On a boat. With headphones. I shudder at the
thought of any one of our songs being put on at a party. It's not that I
am against parties. I'm not like "I do not make party music." But that
thought makes me sick. (Laughs) Some come-together music is really
great; but that's not what it is.
I like the EP, because it's a little lighter, a little less intense. I'm
not listening to it going, "Oh this is so good" but more, "Yeah, I want
to hang myself, but not as much as last time."
Discorder: It does seem a little more hopeful than usual. 0%
Mercer: I'm not a bummer dude all the time. The epic has always
moved me. There is a beauty to, for example, in the Iliad when the
hero goes into the underworld and his father shows him a vision of a
glorious future. It's kind of embarrassing, because what comes wtth
that is sword rattling or whatever, some garbage motives.
I mean, epic music: what does that mean? Ringing your
trumpet on the top of the national monument as another sun comes
up. (Laughs) It seems so ignorant of the chaos and sickness of our
everyday lives. But at the same time, it would be a sickness to negate
the possibility of the epic in your life, too.
Maybe that's an interesting way to look at our body of work—
dealing with those two.
Discorder: Frog Eyes drummer Melanie Campbell is also your
wife. Etas that had any influence on your music?
Mercer: This is one of the things that I always want to talk about,
because I get to stop talking about myself (Laughs). She didn't know
how to play the drums when we started. So much of the music was
in waltzes, because it's in threes. I don't know music, so I'd use
onomatopoeia and be like, "boom ch ch, boom ch ch." And then she'd
go, "that's really simple, actually." That's the way we learned.
As she's grown, the band has grown and we can do different
things. I've really grown with her. I feel a kind of joy and delight with
her, to try and bounce things off of her.
It's kind of neat to play with someone who doesn't know how
to play...But it's like child actors—you never know if they're going to
grow up to be good actors. (Laughing)You can be sidled with a real
dunce. Luckily Mel is great.
Discorder: Are you guys going to have kids?
Mercer: No. No, we're not. I'm so excited about that.
Discorder: You've got the band.
Mercer: Yeah. We've got a dog, too. For me, being on tour would be
really impossible without Mel. It's a pretty crushing thing to do, for
us at least. It's tough to play shows. It takes a tot out of me. Sometimes
I feel like I'm going to puke, you know. Or pass out. And I think the
fact that we can share that is pretty integral.
Discorder: Have you guys thought about moving away from Victoria to make things easier? Victoria is a pretty limited place.
Mercer: Victoria's a really tough town to live in. You need certain
things that the city makes difficult. Vancouver will get like that
too, if it hasn't already. Ifs really brutal to find a jam space. I know
a lot of studio spaces are getting forcibly removed from downtown
Vancouver, and a lot of them have already closed here. High rent
doesn't make good art. That's the draw with Montreal; it's still kind
of reasonable.
Discorder: Your new project. Swan Lake, is a collaboration
with Dan Bejar (Destroyer) and Spencer Krug (Sunset
Rubdown, Won" Parade, Frog Eyes). I heard someone say that
it was funny that you three are working together, because it
seems like you all have sort of an aggressive relationship with
your audience...
Mercer: (Laughs) Yeah.
Discorder: You seem to not really like your audience.
Mercer: It's more of an embarrassment, I think. Why are these
people here, you know? Truthfully, I feel enormous gratefulness for
the people who actually come and pay and stay. The aggressiveness
is maybe something I have to feign so that I can get through it. I'm
just not comfortable with it. I don't think they are either, for different
I know Dan gets kind of...people are expecting their messiah.
When he doesn't deliver the godly goods, it's like, "Where was my
religious experience?" Maybe too much is made of...what do they call
it...the cult of personality. (Pauses, then laughs) Or maybe he just
doesn't like standing up in front of people and singing.
Because we've all played on a stage together, I know that we can
hit really honest levels of intensity together. And we always try. We
try so hard. A bad show leaves you feeling just sick; you can't shake
it off. In that respect, I think we all really care about the audience.
Niceties aside. Or lack of niceties...(Laughs) Spencer's really gracious,
though.
I don't think the three of us could ever go out, play a mediocre
show, and then be like, "Let's go for pizza, guys." Dan is especially
hard on himself. There were a few shows that we played that I'd think
were pretty good and he'd be just, you know, head between his knees.
Dead silence in the band room. But we haven't fully decided if we're
going to turn this record into a live thing. Maybe we will. (Laughs)
For fixture audience abuse.
Discorder: Frog Eyes has a new album coming out, right?
What's it called?
Mercer: (Proudly smirking) Tears of a Valedictorian. My friend Peter was
valedictorian of his high school and he gave a speech, and he totally
starting sobbing in it. I've always thought that was on one hand so
ridiculous, but also so touching. To think that he could conjure up so
much feeling about something so retarded as graduating from high
school.
I felt, when we were making this new record, as if the last three
were kind of like high school. And then I also felt,, "what a ridiculous
thing to think." It's just as nice and just as ridiculous as Peter weeping
at his valedictorian speech.
I'm making fun of myself, I really am. There's probably a word
for that. Or there will bc.Sarcastic earnestness. Earnest self-hatred.
Something like that, jk ■y*
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THte  I
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•ICHeSTlA
by Allan Maclnnis
Illustrations by Lucas Soi
Photographs Courtesy of Constellation Records
THEE SILVER MT. ZION MEMORIAL
ORCHESTRA AND TRA LA LA BAND AND
CARLA BOZULICH ON SOUND, LOVE,
MONEY, ANDTHESADDESTCUTE LITTLE
We live in A culture where doing, making, and/or selling shit you don't believe
in or care about, for the sole purpose of making money, is accepted as a given. People might
badmouth corporate rock, but most of us probably tolerate it more than we realize. That's
why our new HMV Megastore has managed to
fill a whole fucking barn with it, and has been
able to keep its doors open for so long. It's
not the Nickelbacks of this world who are
grilled for being hypocrites or asked
to account for themselves; what explanation could you possibly receive?
"Everywhere you go, the kids wanna
rock, and you like money too, don't you?" It's
the rare popular musicians who commit the
sin of trying to take what they do seriously who are accused of pretension and holier-than-thou attitudes, and are required
to explain themselves again and again. You
get the sense that Efrim Menuck, of Godspeed
You! Black Emperor and A Silver Mount Zion,
is getting just a little tired of it.
10    August 2006 { £ The first thing I have to say is that Mount Zion, in what we do and in the way we do it, the words
we choose to sing, the way we present the music, the ethic of the record label we're on, all those
things can't be simplified as absolute disdain for the marketplace. We are not comfortable issuing huge
pronouncements like that. I mean, I've bought records at HMV, you know? None of us are presenting ourselves as ascetic monks who somehow spend every second of our day fighting the man and not engaging
in the market..." Efrim sighs and pauses.
"The fact is, the world is a bleak place, and the forces that overlap that create this thing that gets
called the marketplace are part of the problem. So as responsible, grown-up, thoughtful human beings
we do what we can to limit our engagement with market forces—for lack of a better term, it sounds like
Dr. Death or something—that we feel are contributing to a global state of affairs that we find to be horrendous. And that's basically, like, humanism, it's not anything deeper than that, and through Godspeed
and with Mount Zion, it's been frustrating because we've never fancied or presented ourselves as some
sort of radical force or something, you know?" (I am tempted, at this point, to try to get him to re-tell the
story about GY1BE being mistaken for terrorists when touring the
US, but he's probably told that story a few too many times).
"I mean... Mostly we've presented ourselves as clumsy,
drunken Canadians, most of whom have like, university degrees,
grew up fuckin' lovin' punk rock, who, when we reached a point
we decided we were gonna start playing music together, had a
sort of ideal. We started to do that and we continue to do it now...
They're just some ideals that we stagger towards kind of blindly,
and we feel common cause with other people who share those ideals. I mean, we're just a fuckin' band, you know...but we take the
fact of being in a band quite seriously, and I'm endlessly discouraged at how generally what musicians take seriously is making
money and positioning their careers..."
I hasten to explain that I respect the idealism of the band;
I feel a bit guilty for having forced him to account for it all over
again. The fact stuns me that by choice, tickets to their August
16th show at Richards on Richards cost only $14; despite the size
of A Silver Mount Zion, and the fact that opening act Carla Bozulich is bringing a full band with her, the band is "charging the
smallest amount of money that we're able to charge and not lose
money on tour. There are a lot of people involved, except the onus
is on us for that. We're the ones that decided to be in a band that
has this many members in it...I mean, most of us in the band got
raised with very little money and.. .we're just not comfortable fleecing people, at the end of the day, I guess. It doesn't seem like such
a profound statement. We mostly just try to I guess act responsibly
in that way. We try to keep things as cheap as we can. We earn an
honest living, I cannot complain. I thank, you know, my miserable
luck every day that I earn a living playing music, you know?"
Carla Bozulich, who also worked with Efrim, Thierry, and Sophie of Mt. Zion on her newest album,
Evangelista, could probably use a bit more cash than she'll be making when she plays Vancouver, but
says, "That's just the way it is." While she managed to support herself with music during her years playing with Ethyl Meatplow and the Geraldine Fibbers, she can't at the moment, and is looking at a difficult
time ahead.
"I mean, that's what I'm pushing for so hard right now, I'm really really really working hard. I'm
touring non-stop. My tour schedule is like 12 weeks right now, which ends at the end of August, and then
I'm going to Europe for six weeks after that, and then I'm coming home and I'm hoping to do the United
States again in the spring, so... you can't push any harder than that, you know what I mean? And I'm doing the strongest music of my life, and I just don't know really what else to do. I was talking to my Mom
and she was like, 'honey, I love your new album, but don't you think maybe you could just do a couple of
little songs that might be a little easier for a bigger audience, you know, to get maybe some cuter songs?'
a totally acceptable question, but I was like, y'know, it's too late for that, I do
what I genuinely feel, and that's me, and, I mean, I dunno...Sometimes, if you look at an artist that's been
performing as long as me or a little longer even, you can kinda see the point in their career where they
were like, I'm not making enough money. I'm going to make an album that's going to make some money,
and I'm going to compromise a little,' and you can kind of put your finger on the album, like the one with
Neil Young in the pink tuxedo and a Cadillac or whatever? And it never works! People are like, 'What the
hell is he doing?' There's really no point in me going there right now... I've turned down opportunities
where I would have been set up for life but I just am not that kind of a person. I don't mind scuffling a little.
I'm kind of a street doggie, and I don't mind having to work hard."
Her own idealism aside, Bozulich articulately points out not everything associated with the corporate world is all bad. "I was talking to someone recently and they were like, you know, you shouldn't
send your CD to Spin because they're just assholes and stupid and everything and I was like, yeah, they
are assholes and they are stupid, but on their behalf, I still have to say that I still get people writing to me
telling me that when they were 13 or 14 years old and they saw a full page picture of me in Spin smiling
and holding a butcher's knife, that that's when they stopped shaving their armpits and got a guitar and started a band. I mean,
like, where is the problem there, we're talking people who are in
South Dakota. Where the fuck are they supposed to get their shit?
I mean, it's different now with the internet, obviously people can
find stuff a lot easier, but..."
Efrim, when I read him this, takes it in. "Absolutely, I mean,
there's all sorts of different ways to engage in this world...but for
me personally, given what happened with Godspeed and what's
been the history of Mt. Zion, I have reason to be distrustful of the
entire industry that exists around the promotion of music... It
breaks my heart a little how degraded the idea of rock journalism
is in the year 2006. It broke my heart in the year 1998, it broke my
heart in the year 1987, it breaks my heart even more today... but
our record label doesn't send records to Spin because Spin magazine generally doesn't review our records."
A Silver Mount Zion and Carla Bozulich both record on
Montreal's independent Constellation Records, whose politics include the manufacture of each CD case from recycled cardboard;
no plastic is used. Bozulich is the first non-Montrealer to record
on the label, with Efrim producing. Evangelista takes her music
to a higher level than anything she has done previously, drawing
comparisons with the work of Diamanda Galas, whom Bozulich
admires. The dark, moody, but very beautiful songs on the new
disc (which also shows traces of the influence of Nico and Patti
Smith) are so powerful and spiritually sincere that she's said that
a church is the ideal place to perform it. Bozulich is well familiar
with roots music and old-time gospel, so I ask her about the religious, or perhaps spiritual, aspects of the disc. She laughs.
"In terms of religion, there is a religion I suppose, but it's all about sound and love. That's it. It's not
about God. It's about a different kind of God. The album is for people that can respond to sound and love
the way other people respond to God, and take it and use it to lift themselves up and rise up above things
that might normally kick their ass, just the way people do with religion, where they reach out and they
say I can't make it on my own, I need this to help me. For me, and my life, that's what I've always found.
Every time it's been the lowest point of my life, it's this exaltation achieved through sound and love and
music music music, that's what always has saved my ass. You find even the little tiniest spark of it, it will
lift you up, and that's what this is about. It's not an album for people that are just cruising along and have
never had any major grief or loss or anger or anything like that. It's much more of an album for people
who can relate to kind of having a little bit of a warrior side to themselves and you know, rising above that
stuff, hopefully without hurting a fuck of a lot of people in the process. So you know, that's it. It's not about
God, because, you know, God, for me... the word doesn't mean anything." Efrim is similarly uncomfortable with the word God. After
clearing up some disinformation currently on Wikipedia, which
suggests he practices Judaism—which is not true in any conventional
or orthodox sense—he explains that Silver Mount Zion is also
informed by old time gospel. "Not gospel as it relates to God, but for
sure, we listen to stuff like that, and we listen to tons of stuff hi that
spirit. I mean, even though it's mostly an impossibility, especially in
the type of venues you're relegated to playing, it comes down to the
idea of performance as like a purely social and transcendent event,
which sounds huge and pompous and ridiculous, I know, but it's this
fancy word for a really simple idea which is just a bunch of people in
a room sort of working together, the band on the stage and the people
in the audience, and now I feel like I'm talking like Bryan Adams and
doing it for the kids and all the rest, but it's not that... it's like, it's
something I feel like we've all felt being at shows before, you know?
It's rare that shows feel that way but when they do, you know you're
in one, and you remember it."
Part of what makes listening to the most recent Silver Mount
Zion CD Horses in the Sky such an intense emotional experience is the
fact that the band sings chorally-—something which might be a bit
shocking to people only familiar wtth Godspeed You! Black Emperor's
stage presentation, which for years involved only sound and projected
images. The video component of GYlBE's stage show has gradually
been replaced with something far more direct.
"The second-last Godspeed tour," Efrim explains, "was in
America in the lead-up to Operation Shock and Awe. The war started
when we rolled into Minneapolis, and it was sort of like, okay, well, you
know, how the fuck are we keeping our mouths shut now, how are we
not saying anything, how are we not engaging with the audiences,
what the hell does it mean if we're just presenting this huge sort of
massive instrumental sort of onslaught? And so we started talking
from the stage, and for me it didn't feel like enough."
"After the first Mount Zion record came out, we did a European
tour where we tried to present that record live, so we ended up playing
quietly, with like a digital piano, and it was one of the most miserable
experiences I've ever had in my life. I didn't understand it at all. Like,
by the third show I realized that every time I go to shows like this, I
hate shows like this. Why the fuck are we doing this? So then two
years later, we were thinking of touring again, and the only thing
we could agree on was that the music should be louder and that we
should aspire to be able to win any audience in any bar anywhere.
We would come together and come up with a set that would win over,
like, drunks and cynics and skeptics alike. So when we were gearing
up and sort of reworking all the arrangements of all the songs to sort
of fit that idea, we booked a week of practice shows in Ontario, to
see how it would play out, and we wrote one song in particular, just
trying it out in the jam space. We tried the idea of all of us singing
together, and amongst ourselves we were like, well, holy fuck, that's
great, you know? Like, if that doesn't melt your heart even a little,
then fuck youl Sort all sort of came out of that feeling at first, because
we scared shitless of this venture we were engaging in, that maybe
if we just put our hearts right on our sleeves and just like, embrace
our ridiculous awkward lack of slickness, then there's value in that,
y'know? And it also just feels real good singing with a bunch of your
friends. It's just a good fucking feeling, it fulfills bask human needs.
We enjoy singing together. I guess it all just comes down to that."
It was an intense 40 minutes on the phone with Efrim, and I
wanted to take it down a notch, so I asked him to recommend a movie.
A documentary buff, he pointed to Emile de Antonio first—whose
work, I'm embarrassed to admit, I have yet to acquaint myself with—
and then shifted gears. "The last movie I saw that I keep trying to get
everyone to watch, and it's a total b-movie, but I really believe it's
awesome, is Silent Running. I love that movie to death and I don't care
what anybody says." An environmentalist SF movie starring Bruce
Dem, it's been some years since I've looked at it. I laugh and tell him
that the cute little robots put me off a little. His voice warms. "I love
the cute little robots. That's exactly why I love that movie, those are
the saddest cute littlerobots in the world."
As a handy tip for those of you who are curious about buying
the music of A Silver Mount Zion or Carla Bozulich (which is available
at HMV, though for the longest time it was filed under "Bazulich"): if
you aren't convinced that it makes any difference who you give your
money, you should note that their albums cost around $20 at HMV,
and around $14 at Scratch Records, which is only a few blocks away
at 726 Richards Street. If, like the members of A Silver Mount Zion,
you like small local record stores and don't want to see them drying
up, you can actually save money by taking your business there. Do
you need an ideological incentive, as well?
More of my interview with Carla Bozulich and Efrim Menuck will appear on
my blog, http://alienatedinvancouver.blogspot.com, in August. W
wVfc
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No Luck Club is a group of three ex-SFUers who are easily numbered among Vancouver's most talented live DJs. I've seen these guys open for pretty much every
notable hip hop act that rolls through town, and they've never failed to bring the party.
Their unique brand of turntablism draws on a refreshingly eclectic sample palette,
as demonstrated by their recent, genre-bending performance at the Folk Festival. Not afraid to delve
into traditional folk and world influences during their scratch-and-beat oriented sets, these three
freestyling disc jockeys infuse some welcome creativity into Vancouver's burgeoning hip hop scene.
With the release of their new album Prosperity just around the corner, No Luck Club gets back to their
roots with this month's mixtape, cataloguing their influences from hair metal to good old boom bap.
1. AC/DC | Highway to Hell
First song I ever heard from these guys, which led me to buy my first cassette.
2. Eric B & Rakim | IKnow You Got Soul
My favorite hip hop song of all time. Also got me to explore jazz & funk.
3. Rockmaster Scott & The Dynamic Three | The Roof is on Fire
A lot of DJs say that Herbie Hancock's 'Rockit' was what got them into scratching. For me, this was
the track. It caught my attention more than 'Rockit'. Probably because the scratching is more in
your face.
4. The Meters | Cissy Strut
This was the song that got me into the whole Southern heavy funk scene.
5. Bomb the Bass | Beat Dis
This song got me into the whole cut 'n paste style of production.
PAUL
1. Q-Bert & D-Styles | Razorblade Alcohol Slide
One of the most influential turntable songs I've ever heard.
2. Herbie Hancock | Rockit
The first song I heard that used scratching in a composition.
3. NWA | Express Yourself
A motivational song created by hoods. What's not to like?
4. DJ Shadow | Midnight in a Perfect World
DJ Shadow shows me how musical arrangements are done.
5. Can | VitaminC
The funky riff had me playing this song everywhere I went.
J-SWING (THE BEAT) & DJ DAVE
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Here's what I was listening to when we recorded our new album. Prosperity:
1. Art of Noise [ Beat Box
This has been a standard in the break scene since its 1983 release. But it was also a groundbreaking
experiment in digital sampling and sound collage which bridged the avant-garde and pop worlds.
2. Miles Davis | Call it Anything (live)
Miles & his band's 38-minute improv jam at the 1970 Isle of Wright festival captured the moment
when jazz went electric and fused with the psychedelic rock movement. This is Bitches Brew era
Miles when he supposedly "sold out" and pissed on the jazz establishment.
3. Marvin Gaye | Right On
This is my favorite song from one of my favorite albums. What's Going On. Marvin rebelled against
Motown's hit factory mentality and delivered a passionate record which addressed the social unrest
of the time, and he fully utilised the musicianship of the Funk Brothers, Motown's unheralded
house band.
4. Nuyorican Soul feat. India | Runaway
One of my favourite songs from the past decade. It's a cover of a 70s Loleatta Holloway/Salsoul
Orchestra tune. I always replay the part when India starts to sing in Spanish during the bridge to
the song's outro.
5. Public Enemy | Bring the Noise
When the man is on your ass just blast some PE, raise a fist in the air and give 'em the screw facet
6. Time Zone | World Destruction
One of Afrika Bambaataa's side projects, this apocalyptic, rap/punk hybrid was a collaboration
with John 'Rotten' Lydon and Bill Las well's band. Material. It perfectly captures the despair of the
Reagan/Thatcher era...which means it's very relevant today!   ||
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958 GRANVILLE
16    August 2006 THE AGE OF ELECTRIC EMPIRE
by Curtis Woloschuk   Illustrations by Meathook
PART TWO
Previously: Todd Kerns escaped the subterranean TASCAM Detention Facility!
Interim leader Jason Grimmer called The
Super Group into action! Kerns reassembled
Age of Electric and breached the defences of
our hero's headquarters!
HOPPING THE CURB, THEY SHOOT HORSES' van
came to a tire-peeling slide stop outside The
Super Group's Strathcona compound. Behind the
wheel, vocalist/guitarist Josh gripped a CB radio
transmitter and implored, "Wolf King, this is Nut
Brown. Do you copy?" A vacuum of white noise
reared itself in response. "I'm not raising shit," he
exclaimed before bouncing the transmitter off the
' dashboard in frustration.
"Jeepers. Looks hke we've got ourselves a
spot of trouble," advised Chris-a-riffic from the
Josh turned to the keyboardist, only to find
his gaze drawn to the window beside Chris-a-riffic
instead. Eight hired thugs had abandoned their
positions at the entrance of the compound and
were engaged in a lockstep march towards the
Horses' vehicle. "Looks like Kerns hired himself
some muscle," Josh surmised. "Do your thing."
Chris-a-riffic retrieved a brown paper bag
that was stowed within the glove compartment.
Opening the bag and placing it over his nose
and mouth, the hulking musician rabidly huffed
its contents: a synthetic reproduction of the
paint from Francis Bacon's "Figure with Meat."
Each inhalation saw the affable keyboardist's
complexion grow increasingly flushed. Veins
began to bulge from his forehead. His pupils
dilated. Dropping the crumpled bag to the floor
of the van, he menacingly muttered, "Colours. I
want to turn them into colours."
"Nice van, faggots," chided the lead thug from
outside the vehicle. One of his cohorts slapped him
encouragingly on the back of his Audioslave shirt.
The remainder of the throng started to encircle
the Horses' transport. "Where'd you..."
The would-be witticism never saw
completion. Instead, the passenger door swung
open and a fume-fuelled Chris-a-riffic flung
himself through the air. Touching down on the
concrete, he punched an encroaching Godsmack
devotee in the midsection. Throwing an elbow
backwards, a stream of blood was sent flying from
a Korn fan's nose. Gripping an AFI aficionado by
the cheeks, Chris-a-riffic pulled the man close and
hissed, "I want to see your colours." The hired
muscle promptly vented his bowels.
*    *    *
BRACKETED BY FELLOW AGE OF ELECTRIC
members Ryan Dahle and John Kerns,
a sneering Todd Kerns took a predatory step
towards Super Groupers Jason Grimmer and Kurt
Dahle. "Give us what belongs to us," he prodded.
When Grimmer shook his head in defiance, Kerns
instructed, "Stand down. This doesn't involve you.
This is a family matter."
"Come on, Kurt," encouraged Ryan Dahle.
"It'll be just like old times." He recounted,
"Remember the '95 Canadian tour? That night In
Winnipeg?" His eyes warmed with nostalgia. "We
did all that fuckin' mescaline with Tom Jackson
and then paid those hobos to suck each other off
while we watched."
"We got to a really beautiful place that
night," added John Kerns.
"Uhhhh..." Dahle could feel Grimmer's
appraising stare settle on him. "I don't want to go
back to Winnipeg. Ever. I've moved on. I mean, the
Pornographers just played Lollapalooza."
"Ooooooh! Lollapalooza!" mocked Todd
Kerns. "Stop it! You're going to make my nipples
hard." His underlings joined him in a laugh. "Let
me make this clear. I'm not asking. I'm telling
you how it's going to be." He watched a wave of
anger wash over Grimmer. "What?! What are you
going to do?!" He catalogued: "Dixon and Bristow
are trapped downstairs. The Winks are taking a
nap break. Those precious ponies you called in
are getting their asses handed to them outside."
Knuckles were cracked. "You about ready to throw
down, choir boy?"
An unexpected grin curled Grimmer's lips.
"I've got zero interest in trading punches with a
waste hke you," he advised. Glancing over his
shoulder, he suggested, "Kurt... Unlatch the drunk
Dahle leapt into the air with a trapeze artist's
grace. Employing the communication platform's
banister as a vaulting horse, he launched himself
to the lower floor of the command centre. As
he touched down on the sofa below, his weight
shifted and he catapulted into an arching
somersault that carried him over the trance-
ravaged Winks. Dahle^s second landing brought
him down directly in front of an immense steamer
trunk. The drummer unclasped the trunk's lock
before rising to his feet. Seconds later, the four
members of Ladyhawk began to unfold themselves
from within the container in the same manner a
troupe of clowns might extricate themselves from
a compact Volkswagen.
"What the...?" The combination of Dahle's
dizzying display of agility and the sudden arrival
of reinforcements had left Kerns bewildered.
"Things change pretty fast around here,"
suggested Grimmer. "Your odds, for instance.
You're not only outnumbered, but you also have
four drunken masters to contend with. Each of
these Jagjaguwar recording artists is trained in
the The Eight Drunken Gods." He temporarily
averted his eyes to watch the Ladyhawk lads pass
around a forty of Colt 45. Abandoning the bottle,
the quartet then stumbled into their combat
stances. "These boys are about to put you back
underground."
A recomposed Kerns issued a reassuring
nod to each of his underlings. He next retrieved
-a pager-sized device from his belt and smiled
boldly. "Where do you suppose all that power
we drained from your headquarters went?" he
queried. Unwilling to wait on a response, Kerns
activated the device. A boh of blue electricity
ruptured forth, only to be reined in by the villain's
fingers. Lightning-like sprigs and sparks danced
and crackled In his palm. With pure malice
contorting his face, Kerns hurled a hail of hostile
voltage at the Ladyhawk beardos. Unable to react
in time, the quartet were struck dead on. As they
fried and convulsed, clouds of residual marijuana
wafted from their pores and started to hotbox the
headquarters.
"Christ on a cross!" shouted Grimmer. He
instinctively grabbed a coffee mug from a nearby
counter and sent it sailing across the room. It
collided with Kerns' hand and veered his long range
assault off course. Aggravated by Grimmer's gall,
Kerns turned his attention to The Super Group's
leader. With surplus electricity still tracing his
fingertips, he tossed a destructive barrage towards
his target. Dropping to the floor, Grimmer felt the
air bristle as lightning crackled overhead and set
the communications console alight.
"Hey, chief!" cried Dahle from acr
room.
"A little busy here I" bemoaned Grimmer.
Back on his feet, he swivelled hard to his right ii
order to avoid another of Kerns' attacks.
"You're going to want to see this," insisted
Dahle. "Guess who finally made contact with the
dovetailed starfish guardian of the primordial
psyche?"
At the centre of the room, the meditating
Winks had indeed channelled their celestial
emissary. A ten-foot tall, ultra-terrestrial invertebrate had materialized from the ether and now
stood upright on two of its translucent appendages.
The starfish creature's upper limbs writhed in
apparent anger while its finely feathered tail
swung and snapped like a bullwhip. Setting its
unseeing sights on the Age of Electric, it began a
lumbering approach towards its quarry. Bracing
himself defiantly, Kerns clicked a second button
on his handheld device. A blanket of writhing
electrical current immediately enveloped his body.
He next placed a hand on each of his cohorts and
the field of energy enfolded them as well. The trio
readied themselves for combat.
"...Duckworth... Anyone there?" Behind
Grimmer, the faint traces of an outside transmission emanated from the communication console's speakers. "I'm... a lot... noise over... line."
"Kurt!" Grimmer gestured for Dahle to join
him on the command platform. "Jack's trying to
get through."
Dahle cartwheeled across the room.
Eyeing the singed and smoking console, he suggested, "I think Kerns' electric bolts might have
inadvertently resuscitated the system." Further
switches were flipped and dials cranked in an
attempt to establish a signal. "Kind of like a
defibrillator reviving a cardiac victim."
"Damn it, Dahle. You know I can't stomach
analogies," chastised Grimmer before imploring,
"Get me a clear Une out of here. We need backup."
At the centre of the room, the otherworldly
starfish guardian and Age of Electric were closing
the distance between each other. Taking the
forward point in a rudimentary triangle formation,
Kerns yelled, "In the service of her royal majesty!"
The battle cry was taken up by his compatriots.
"Her royal majesty?" Grimmer echoed
contemplatively. A realization suddenly struck
him with devastating force. At the communication
console, Dahle offered an affirmative thumbs up.
Grimmer leapt forward, pushed the "Transmit"
button and shouted, "Jack! I need you mobile!"
Already considering strategy, he ordered, "I need
you to get Naked. Did you catch that? Get Naked!"
TO BE
CONCLUDED...*
Discorder     17 THE OMNIPRESENT TJJMNi GiMMCi BIDS ADIEU TO VANCOUVER
by Quinn Omori
Illustration by Will Brown
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03
If you're the type of person who bothers to pick
up Discorder, and you've been living in Vancouver
for any length of time, you probably recognize Jason
Grimmer. He's probably sold you one of your favourite
records (he manages Zulu), but his contribution
to the city's music scene goes far deeper than the
popular independent music store. You may have
read his musings in both the Straight and Terminal
City (he edited the music section in the latter). But,
if you get out and watch live music, it's most likely
that you've seen him play. Jason's had his hand in
so many bands that a collective of his collaborators
is probably large enough to fill any of Vancouver's
smaller venues, most of which he's played a show in.
He'll play his last one at the Media Club fronting the
Christa Min two days before this issue of Discorder
hits newsstands. While it certainly won't mark the
end of his music-making, it will mark the last time
for a long time that he graces a Vancouver stage for
a hometown show.
"It's going to be hard leaving here. I'm going to
miss it, the people I know," he says of his impending
move to Montreal. "I did a lot when I was here,
I think." That's certainly an understated way of
putting it.
A native of New Brunswick, Grimmer's seen
his fair share of Canada, going to school in Hamilton
and living in Vancouver once before, returning for
a brief stay in the Maritimes before settling back on
the West Coast. "I moved back here in 1999, started
at Zulu in 2000, and that's when I sort of started all
the bands."
The Nasty On was the first "serious" ("it
wasn't that serious, but still serious enough to
try and get shows") endeavour that he fronted. It
was the product of two earlier projects that also
involved Allen Forrister and Matt Lyons. "There's
always been me and Allen and Matt from the Nasty
On. We always did stuff together. We had a band
called Mystery Craters," notes Grimmer. Along
with Mystery Craters, the trio played "a few house
parties" with Mark Epp and Jason's wife Kathy Dube
under the name Janitor during his first tenure on
the West Coast.
Upon returning to Vancouver, Janitor split into
two, with Epp and Dube forming The Cinch (along
with CC Rose, Jennifer Smyth, and Geoff Thompson),
while Allen, Matt and Jason founded the Nasty On.
Known for a five show that could be either glorious
or a train wreck (sometimes both), some of the
band's shows are now legendary. "Early on we were
really inspired by the band Slow. That was the Nasty
On's whole thing, which was be as drunk and sloppy
as you can."
No matter how good the results are, you can
only keep up that kind of existence for so long, which
partly explains why the Nasty On have been more
or less silent for the last year or more. Says Jason, "I
just sort of lost interest in yelling a lot.. .1 was sort of
known for getting really, really drunk. I was like, I
don't wanna go in that direction anymore, be this old
guy around town who used to be in this punk band
who's all messed up now." He also made a conscious
decision to have a larger hand in writing the music
he was performing. "I didn't play anything. I didn't
write any of the music, so I wanted to know how
to play stuff, and I became interested in changing
things around."
"It was really inspired by Destroyer's This Night.
I didn't want to sound like that, but I liked the idea
of how loose that sounded and how that record...was
meandering, and had tons of guitar all over the
place," says Grimmer, speaking to the motivation
behind what would become the Christa Min. "It was
a concentrated effort to learn songs that I could play
on my own. Also, I wanted to play in a band with
Paul Malcolm, who was in Video Tokyo. I wanted to
play with certain people."
The resulting band was not only much looser
than the Nasty On, but much more versatile. A
show with the Min might feature any number of
musicians from its rotating live cast. "We got asked
to open for the Black Angels, and I was like, 'well,
our bassist is out of town' and they were like, 'well,
can you put something together really quickly?" So
that day we went into the practice space and created
something we called "Puppet Jupiter," loaded in the
band and opened up for them. I don't know how that
went over, but the Black Angels said they loved it,"
says Jason, explaining their ability to adapt.
In contrast to the four to the floor riffage of
the Nasty On, the Christa Min is dense and druggy
sounding, taking cues from psych-pop bands like the
13th Floor Elevators, while maintaining adarker edge.
That edge is tempered, however, by their name. "Her
playing in Video Tokyo was amazing. She's a great
writer. We just like the idea of her," says Grimmer of
Christa Min. "We thought it would be really funny
to take her name and see what kind of reaction we'd
get." In addition to the former Discorder columnist's
namesake, Jason filled his post-Nasty On time with
two other groups of Vancouver musicians.
"It started a long time ago at Zulu when Nic
Bragg decided we should have a store band that was
going to be inspired by Superconductor, because...
they had a real affiliation with Scratch records,"
says Grimmer of the friendly inter-store rivalry
that helped lead to the creation of the Countless
Jibes. Boasting a lineup that includes pretty much
everyone that works with Jason at his day job (and
then some), the dozen or so members look like a
nipper version of the Polyphonic Spree, going off
with the same amount of joyful intensity on most
evenings. Free of any expectations to tour, record,
or even write songs more than few days before a
show, the Jibes are the result of one of the purest
motivations to form a band: the urge to simply have
fun with some friends. Despite the band's somewhat
tongue-in-cheek origins, the resulting music—
loose, dirty, and psychedelic—is nothing to laugh
at, and they've held their own on bills with the likes
of Mudhoney, the Walkmen, Wolf Parade and the
Decemberists. Not bad for "a bit of a joke."
"Anemones is Steve Ballough's band. He just
asked me and Kathy to join," says Jason of the final
.musical endeavour he's been splitting his time in.
Originally featuring two drummers, the band's now
shrunk down to a quartet, leaving a drum machine
to keep time behind a wall of sound reminiscent of
Spaceman 3. Droning organ sheaths the rumbling
bass and sharp guitar, while Jason croons over top of
it all, with occasional vocal assistance from Kathy,
who plays Hope Sandoval to his Jim Reid.
While the Nasty On is a done deal (at least
for the foreseeable future) and the Min and Jibes
will continue without Jason, Anemones will push
forward with its current lineup. "When it came time
to leave, we were just going to break up the band,
and I just talked to Steve and said, 'you know we've
adapted to all this so far, and it's done pretty well,
and we're all really happy with where it's going and
people seem to like it, so we might as well try and
continue and adapt to it.'" Rather than hash things
out in the same room, Anemones are taking a page
from the Postal Service (technically, not musically),
and will continue to record long-distance. "We plan
on doing this project for years and years and years."
Along with Anemones, Grimmer already has a
new band ready to write once he makes his move at
the beginning of next month. Montreallers will be
able to check out the as-yet untitled project at this
year's Pop Montreal, and Vancouverites will no
doubt see him on stage here sometime in the future.
By the time you read this, though, he'll have played
his last few shows in Vancouver with house keys in
his pocket.
Maybe you missed them, maybe you caught
some, but either way, there's unlikely to be a whole
lot of fanfare around them. A bit of a quiet farewell
for a guy who's made such a huge contribution to
some of the very best things about Vancouver, but
that probably suits him just fine. "I think my leaving
is drawn out already. I'd rather just disappear. I hate
goodbyes and things like that."
The Straight, Dan Bejar, the Starfish Room,
the Cobalt, Slow, DOA, maybe even Discorder: there
are certain things that have been and continue to
be synonymous with the city's music scene. And,
despite the fact that he "never planned on staying
here as long as [he] did," Jason Grimmer is one of
them.   ^
"It's going to he hard leaving here. I'm going to miss
it, the people I know"
18     August 2006 ^^"^^^™^^^™^^^™^^^™^^™™™^
ALL ROADS LEAD TO B %   % %  \%   W
MOHeAUSUO
by Allan Maclnnis
GREATEST HITS COMPILATIONS AND mini-EPS
aside, it has been six years since there was a
new Nomeansno album. All Roads Lead to Ausfahrt,
to be released in Vancouver on August 22nd, has
Nomeansno aficionados worldwide drooling. Fans
flew from as far as Poland to see the CD release
show on June 29th at the Commodore as part
of the jazz festival (Rob: "It's official, we're jazz
punkl"). Copies weren't actually on sale then, but
the band did sell a few at their Tofino, Lund, and
Denman Island shows—a couple of which were
immediately posted on eBay by less scrupulous
attendees.
John Chedsey is the band's webmaster (www.
nomeanswhatever.com), sometimes roadie, and
the founder of the punk and metal review site,
Satan Stole My Teddybear (www.ssmt-reviews.
com/db/). He says of Ausfahrt, "I think it'll go
down as one of the best albums in their entire
catalogue. It's great from beginning to end. The
CD is a mix between Nomeansno and Hanson
Brothers, insofar as the band realized you could
write good songs that are around four minutes
long, but still retain the complexity of classic
Nomeansno." Thanks to Blair Calibaba's excellent
production, it is probably their finest sounding
recording to date.
New York-based forum participant Strangest,
who paid over $600 US to fly here for all four BC
shows, describes the disc as "an incredibly mixed
straight-up rock and roD album with a hefty dose of
NMN thrown in," and says "Rob just explodes and
has never sounded more confident, Tom sounds
like thunder, John sounds like lightning and you
can *hear* how much fun they're having..."
I asked Rob Wright about fans who fly across
the world to see Nomeansno, and he grinned. "I
think they're nuts, I always tell them that. 'Why
are you doing this? This is crazy! There are bands
in your hometown you could go see... I Well, I hope
you're having a great vacation, but it's a little
embarrassing, really, it is...'"
The band's creative process was a bit
different this time around. While Rob usually
writes the songs and gives parts to his brother
John and guitarist Tom Holliston to learn or
elaborate on, this time John Wright took the helm
as the primary music writer. Holliston, who has
previously devoted most of his songwriting to his
work with Show Business Giants and his solo CDs,
was also more involved, which may explain why
this is the most guitar-oriented release since Andy
Kerr departed. Rob Wright describes the process:
"A lot of it just came in with people bringing in
parts and sticking them together and then about
a month before the recording session we had,
like, eleven songs that didn't have any words,
and I thought, well... So I just kept going to the
practice space early in the morning and, boom,
writing lyrics, which is a lot of fun. I find it very
easy, in a sense, to put lyrics onto other people's
music—easier than writing my own songs." Fans
of Rob's songwriting need not worry, though;
they'll immediately recognize "Mr. In Between"
and the grim "I'm Dreaming and I Can't Wake Up"
as entirely his.
I asked Rob about the disconcerting level of
peppiness to this release. "The last album before
this. One, was a particularly dark album. This
album is in a sense like Wrong was, because after
we did Small Parts, we thought, well, no more
epics, whatever seems to have a good beat, we'll
put that on..." Since Wrong is considered by many
the band's high-water mark, all this can only be
seen as an auspicious sign.
The title of the disc refers to the experience
of driving in Germany. Perceptive fans on the
discussion forum have already figured out that it
basically means "all roads lead to the off-ramp." In
Germany, freeway exits are not labeled with town
names, merely the word "Ausfahrt." John Wright
came up with the title and cover concept, with
a little help from Chedsey. The younger Wright
describes it as "a tip of the hat to the Deustchers.
We all know the joke about the largest city in
Germany, or maybe we don't... No question that
Europe, and Germany in particular, has been
a major reason we have been able to carry on
so many years. We have a great fan base over
The band's next European tour kicks off
in France on November 22nd, after they finish a
major US tour. No new Vancouver dates have been
announced.
Much of Nomeansno's back catalogue has
been getting scarcer since they left Alternative
Tentacles five years ago, but is gradually coming
back into print. "The next two will be Small Parts
and 0+2, which Southern UK will release on CD in
September," Holliston tells me, advising fans not
to waste huge amounts of money on eBay. The new
album will be coming out on Ipecac/AntAcid in
North America. Referring to the history of issues
with Tentacles distributor Mordam Records, John
Wright comments, "Perhaps with some good
distribution here this time we'll actually sell some
records!"
Another future release to look forward to:
Rob Wright recorded two vocal cuts with the
Italian thrash band Zu (www.zuism.com), who
toured with them briefly in BC. Massimo, Zu's
bassist, reports that there is no official release date
for the collaboration. Rob says he absolutely insists
it be called A Visit to the Zu wtth Mr. Wrong. ("And
you have me in a monkey cage passing a joint to
a chimpanzee on the cover..."). Zu's maniacal
baritone sax player Luca, sporting a goatee and
wearing a Slayer t-shirt, joined Nomeansno
onstage at the jazz fest for their encore, a cover of
Miles Davis' "Bitches' Brew," with lyrics by Rob.
Though he thinks it's "one of the best things'*
the band has done, he suspects it may have sunk
One—not every punk can take 15 minutes of
tortured introspection based on a reworked jazz
classic.
Nomeansno tend to shy away from publicity
and are not particularly internet-savvy. Though
John says that he is glad that the Nomeansnerds
finally have a home, he admits that the band rarely,
if ever, look in on the website. For years, the band
had no net presence at all. Chedsey has described
getting them to participate on the site as being
Hartmut Schneider
like "herding cats... Since the band isn't exactly
the best about remembering to provide me with
information, I started making up my own news
for the front page." The site is rife with ridiculous
disinformation, in which the band occasionally
participates, with typical good humour (Asked
whether the Hanson Brothers have officially called
it quits, Tom answers that "testicular ascension
can be a spoiler," and John W. pitches in, "They're
all in jail."). Chedsey has hinted that I may have
gotten my chain pulled "at least once" during the
brief interview. I assume no responsibility for the
veracity of information in this article.
I asked John Wright about the grim state of
affairs in the world today and the contradiction
with the energetic and playful quality of the
new songs. "Aw, well, there's nothing like a song
about death you can snap your fingers to," he
answered. "The state of things today isn't that
different from 30 or 40 years ago. But my advice,
invest in Coppertone." Tom thinks a bit and then
adds, "There has always been a Tamerlane. That
said, the world would, in my opinion, be a better
place if motorists used their turning indicators. I
don't think it will happen anytime soon."
The word ausfahrt might indicate to worried
fans that the band is considering retirement. (The
answer to the rather famously-posed question
of "how fucken old" they are is "44,46, and 52,"
though Holliston adds that "age means nothing!
Who cares?"). John Wright chuckles. "Apparently
we have been breaking up since '92. Why should
this time be any different? All our albums are our
retirement albums. That's why we have to put out
so many!" Holliston continues, "The band have
never looked too far ahead, although nowadays
there are so many places to play that we are
booked or are booking up to a year in advance.
BB King is turning 80 in August, playing on his
birthday. Who knows?"
Rob Wright had left to go golfing at this point,
so had nothing further to add. £|
-t^-
Discorder     2 9 frnimim 43 songs performed by:
Akron/Family Antony Joseph Arthur Bono Eliza Carttty Martin Canthy Nick Cove Jarvis Cocker Andrea Corr Bryan Ferry
Gavin Friday Bill Fpisell BabyGramps Richard Greene Ed Harcourt Jolie Holland Robin Holcomb Jack Shit Ricky Jay Kate McGarrigle
Bob Neuwirth Mary Margaret O'Hara Van Dyke Parks Lou Reed JohnO.Reilly Stan Ridgway Ralph Steadman Sting David Thomas
Mark Anthony Thompson Richard Thompson Teddy Thompson Three Pruned Men The UK Group Loudon Wainwright III
Rutus Wainwright White Magic Lucinda Williams 8 22 06
20    August 2006 ^^^^^T77T^^^^_^
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A FEW THINGS TO NOTE
oi. If you find a mix, replace it with one of your own.
02. You don't need to find one to make one.
03. CDs, tapes, 8-tracks and dub plates accepted.
04. Include the Mixed Apes cover sheet and a track list
with every mix. *.
:S>"es"
HAKE A MIX
AND LEAVE IT SOMEWHERE PUBLIC
I
www.discontor.ca/mixedapes
fti@coi?g>®SK i
Discorder     21 HBDER REVIEW
THE PIPETTES, MSTRKRFT, OPUS DAI
SONIC YOUTH, CARIBOU, JAM1 S FIGURINE
GREG GRAFFIN, KINKY
We Are the Pipettes
(Memphis Industries)
Reviews tend to privilege the
kind of music that hits you immediately, as opposed to albums
that take more time to become
beloved. Perhaps this explains
pop's continued domination
of Western music. If this is the
case, The Pipettes are a pop
juggernaut. I haven't stopped
listening to We Are the Pipettes
once in the last three days, and
it doesn't look like the troops are
going to retreat any time soon.
I am completely smitten by the
Pipettes' updated spin on classic girl-group sounds. It's all
there—the bright piano, call-
and-response vocals, the slow-
building drums that make you
want to pull someone close and
slow-dance. And it's all turned
up to 11.
Where Camera Obscura
and the Concretes merely take
hints from girl-group stylings.
The Pipettes work completely
within  the   genre,   producing
pop-perfect melodies and revamping traditional girl-group
songwriting. Unlike true-love
balladeers The Ronettes and
The Shangri-Las, The Pipettes
aren't interested in walking in
the sand—they'd rather kick it
in your face. In "Your IQsses are
Wasted on Me," the background
vocals croon, "He's so sweeet,"
as the lead intones icily, "I've
had about enough of sweet," in
a tough-sexy Brighton accent.
The chorus of "One Night Stand"
declares, "I don't love you, I
don't want you, if you think this
is cruel, you should see what my
friends do..." The combination
of caustic lyrics with traditionally sentimental and vulnerable
music is an excellent prank: in
the song "Sex," for example, the
lead singer explains to a pretty-
but-Ioquacious boy, "When you
get going, you're really quite a
bore" overtop classic oooo-eeeee-
000-000 background vocals. On
the other hand, more straight-
up tracks like "Under a Winter's
Sky" and "Tell me What you
Want" prove that even without
the jokes, the Pipettes are a force
to be reckoned with. We Are the
Pipettes is a modern classic for
girls who don't wait for boys to
call, and for boys who like their
girls more smart-mouthed than
lovelorn.
KatSiddle
Rather Ripped
(Geffen)
Did anyone else think Sonic Nurse kind of blew? I mean,
Murray Street was most definitely a return to form in the
pantheon of great Sonic Youth
albums, and Kim's been turning in some of the best songs of
her career as of late. But the albums kind of live or die on the
Thurston tracks, and on Sonic
Nurse he turned in a bunch of
limp-wristed noodly garbage.
Whatever peaks of Television-
esque guitar interplay that were
scaled last time around became
endless jammy choogling, and
everybody was too busy rushing
Are you a local band
We are now accepting entries for Shindig! 2006.
We need from you:
1) Three songs of original material.
2) Contact phone number and email address
^^eisA^usr^^
\\   I
to call them "elder states-people"
to notice.
Guess that's why I was a little wary of this one. I own more
Sonic Youth CDs than any other
band, and if the total is gonna
increase, they'd better bring the
goods. And they do, kinda sorta.
O'Rourke's gone, and the aging
Youth gang have pared down to
a churning rock unit, indulging
in cool, lean post-punkery, especially with Lee Ronaldo's lead on
"Rats." There's no real fireworks
here; all the "noise" is ever-so-
tastefully woven in to the tunes,
and there's no Borbetomagus
lurking in the background. In
fact, the closest they get to that
sort of caveman catharsis is
Thurston's Merzbow tee in the
band photo.
But it's summertime, and
I'd have to be a total dick to tell
you there's something wrong
with good songs. Once again,
Kim brings the best, and the album is really propped up on the
strength of "Reena" and "Jams
Run Free." Solid listen, front to
back, so I guess there's nothing
wrong with that.
Dave Nichols
!________*_______________■
Mistakes, Mistakes, Mistakes,
Mistakes, Mistakes
(Plug Research)
While Jimmy Tamborello
wasn't exactly a household name
a few years ago, chances are by
now even your awkward kid
brother knows who this guy is.
This is mostly due to him being
one half of the Postal Service—
he's the guy who's not that dude
from Death Cab—as well as his
highly-regarded album life is
Full of Possibilities under the
name Dntel. Tamborello is also
1/3 of the techno-pop group Figurine, which is where we get the
James Figurine persona.
On Mistakes, Tamborello
set out to make a very minimal
techno record splattered with
the odd vocal whisperings, but
things didn't really go according
to plan. Instead, his pop tendencies got the better of him, leaving
this sounding most like his work
in Figurine, with some dancy-
techno tracks in between. On
the vocal front, Tamborello has
thankfully broken his vow of silence and stepped up to the mic,
lending some simple words on a
few tracks.
Mistakes brings some star
power with the vocal talents of
old friends Jenny Lewis and Erlend 0ye, with the latter featuring on the album's best track, "All
the Way to China." Like Aphex
Twin's Analord series, this is a
record that attempts to improve
upon older formulas of electronic music, and Tamborello really
does a decent job of it. While this
may be no life is Full of Possibilities, it's not really that far off either. Mistakes is a tasty morsel to
chew on while we await the next
releases from Tamborello's more
high-profile projects.
BRock Thiessen
Cold as the Clay
(Anti)
What does an elder statesman of second-wave punk rock
do when he wants to take his
music down a significantly
twangier path? Hook up with a
quartet of former punks, who've
been moving steadily in that
very direction. Greg Graffin is
best known as the singer of Bad
Religion, but he might leave a lot
of his fan base scratching their
heads on this one. Backed by
the Weakerthans (whose own
front man left some Propagandhi devotees wondering what
happened) and given a helping
hand from folk chanteuse Jolie
Holland, Cold as the Clay might
be seen as a bit of a departure
from Graffin's full time gig. It
has been said that country is
the original punk rock, but you
might be hard pressed to find
any SoCal scene devotees who
wholeheartedly agree. At the
same time, Graffin's solo outing
will also leave country fans feeling a bit lukewarm.
Cold as the Clay has most of
the elements of a great country
record. Even though their own
music retains much more of a pop
bent, the Weakerthans shine, doing for Graffin what The Sadies
did for Neko Case. Stephen Carroll often uses his tasteful leads
to add a bit of down-home tinge
to his band's own material, but
he's allowed to really let loose
here, to fabulous result. Similarly, whenever Jolie Holland makes
an appearance, her ragged harmonies play off Graffin's voice
like Emmylou Harris did for
Gram Parsons. And then there's
Graffin's voice. I was never a
huge fan of his singing in Bad
Religion's brand of punk, but he
has the perfect set of pipes for
this type of venture. Somehow
though, all these great parts fail
to add up to an overly satisfying
whole. When he does hit on a
winner (like on the title track),
Graffin's intelligent lyricism
shines brighter in this setting
than it ever did with his full time
outfit. For the most part, however, the songwriting just isn't up
to snuff, and those moments are
few and far between.
"Going country" seems to be
the thing to do these days. Rilo
Kiley's leading lady, Jenny Lewis, paid homage to her Nashville
influences to great effect earlier this year. Stars' Amy Mil-
Ian also seemed right at home
on her bluegrass-soaked solo
debut. Greg Graffin was on the
right track when he assembled
the players that joined him on
this set of tunes. At the end of
the day, though, no matter how
many pickin' banjos, rich slide
guitars, or country chanteuses
you layer on a record, it's only as
good the songs themselves. Cold
as the Clay had the backing cast
to support something truly special; too bad it's merely competent.
Quinn Omori
Actum Procul
(Double Blind Music)
For some reason we just
got our copy of last year's five-
song live EP debut of Opus Dai,
22     August 2006 which is weird, since their new
disc is now out. Nonetheless,
Actum Procul is a great introduction to this Los Angeles
foursome's prog-rock. Driving beats, serpentine riffs and
hooky melodies combine to make
an engaging sonic environment
that seeps all the way into your
brain stem.
For a live disc, the sound quality is suspiciously good, but hey,
forty years into the overdub age,
who really cares anyhow? I will
say that they should have edited
out the crowd rapport crap—
what sounds and feels really
cool in the context of a concert
is often rather dumb on disc, and
breaks the listener's absorption.
That's my only quibble, though,
so we'll let it slide.
Opus Dai are already being compared to The Mars Volta, which I find a bit misleading and frankly, I prefer Opus
Dai—they're less tangential and
psychedelic, and more straight-
ahead, glorious hard rock. Opus
Dai are amongst the new breed
of proggers—their sound is
fresh, and contrary to common
prog stereotypes, there were no
songs about wizards. Although,
with their lyrical talent, they
probably could pull it off without
sounding 1983.
So, Actum Procul is the yummy appetizer, and I won't be
waiting on our copy of the new
disc to arrive by snail mail—I'll
go get it myself.
Drake
The Looks
(Last Gang)
MSTRKRFT seemed to come
out of nowhere. Sure, Jesse
Keeler is fairly well known as
the bass slinger in Death from
Above 1979, but who saw this
coming? The duo (consisting
of Keeler and Al-P) first threw
themselves into music lovers'
collective consciousness with a
remix of Keeler's other gig. Their
retouch of "Little Girl" took Jesse's proto-metal riffage to a place
that was far more rhythmic,
while partner-in-crime Sebastian Grainger saw his 4/4 drums
replaced with cowbell and compressed high hat. Then, all of a
sudden, MSTRKRFT were everywhere and in demand.
Jesse and Al's seemingly magic touch has since graced singles
by Annie, Metric, Panthers, Services, Polysics, The Gossip, and
most notably, Bloc Party, turning even the most languid single
into your favourite DJ's new best
friend. The latter band was fortunate enough to have their sleep-
inducing one-off, "Two More
Years," transformed from glorified Silent Alarm b-side status to
a positively thrilling dance floor
filler. All the attention spawned
a wave of hype that threatened
to drown MSTRKFRT's full-
length debut, but they manage
to keep things above water.
The first single, "Easy Love,"
opens with a keyboard line
that's so smooth it almost slithers out of the speakers. "She's
Good for Business" is all bass
pulses and handclaps behind
a multi-tracked, female-sung
mantra of "I gotta shake it." If
the world were full of hipster
dive bars, it would be a sure shot
anthem. Opener, "Work on You,"
is exactly what the latest Daft
Punk album should've sounded
like. The Looks is littered with
similar ventures: songs that will
remind of you of other artists, all
executed incredibly well. Justice,
Simian, and "Chicago House" all
come to mind, while slinky bass
lines, old-school synths, and -
plenty of well-worn vocoder are
painted all over the disc's eight
tracks. Don't let the borrowed
sounds dissuade you from picking this one up though; they're
taking cues from some impressive forbear's. Though they
aren't doing anything wholly
original, they're sure goddamn
good at playing with the famil-
While it's nothing revolutionary, it's sure to make you shake
your ass, and what more do you
want from a dance record?
Quinn Omori
Start Breaking My Heart (re-
release)
(Leaf)
Double-disc re-release? Sweet
fancy jesus cakes! It's been about two years since Dan Snaith
made the notorious nomenclature switch from Manitoba to
Caribou, so it's high time to pimp
the luxuries of a name change
and throw a collection of early
material to the masses. The disc
brings together a handful of
EPs anchored with a re-release
of Snaith's first album as Manitoba, 2001's kaleidoscopic Start
Breaking my Heart.
Consider it an aural buffet
of Manitoba's younger years. In
addition to the full-length, the
compilation contains early EPs
like People Eating Fruit (2000),
Paul's Birthday (2001), Give'r
(2001), and If Assholes Could
Fly this Place Would Be an Airport (2003). Subtle and sparse,
the new Start Breaking my Heart
collection serves as a reminder
of a pared-down Manitoba, anticipating the searing abandon
of 2003's Up in Flames and last
year's jangling Kraut revival,
The Milk of Human Kindness.
The sprawling headiness
of "Evan Likes Driving" wraps
itself in a twilight curiosity
whose composition is less occupied with the sonic tension and
release of later works, focused
instead on exploring bright
spectrums of quiet, textured
soundscapes. "Tits & Ass: the
Great Canadian Weekend," hailing from the appropriately-titled
Give'r, articulates a fascination
with Canadian hoser discourses that continues to creep into
Snaith's music. "Webers," from
the same disc, is a quick wander into hip hop territory that is
more thoroughly sounded out in
"Leopards" on The Milk of Human
Kindness.
Indeed, the material on Start
Breaking my Heart seems to have
laid the groundwork for Snaith's
admirable career, and the careful math of his sound is perhaps
most apparent in the spaciousness of this compilation. Since
releasing his first recordings,
Snaith has earned a Ph.D in
mathematics from Imperial College in London, England: the
Start Breaking my Heart re-release is a collection of some of his
most calculated pieces.
Jackie Wong
Up in Flames (re-release)
(Leaf)
When the folks at the Leaf
label re-issued Up in Flames,
(originally released in 2003 by
Dan Snaith's Manitoba), they
did simply that: slapped 'Caribou' in place of 'Manitoba' on
the album's original cover, not
only to satisfy the likes of Handsome Dick Manitoba, but also to
provide fans of Caribou access to
a significant piece of the artist's
full repertoire.
Snaith himself promised fans
that "At the end of the day, nothing's going to change other than
the name," and indeed, Up In
Flames makes good on this vow.
Open your copy of the re-release
on iTunes, for instance, and
you'll notice that the artist name
may still appear as Manitoba.
Will the Gracenotes Database be
the site of the next stand-off between Snaith and the Dictators?
Time will tell, but until then,
the re-release of Up in Flames
will enlighten the second wave
of Snaith fans (those who got
to know him only as Caribou,
among whom I count myself) of
the musical stepping stones that
led him to the sounds of The Milk
of Human Kindness.
What strikes me about Up
in Flames as a novice ear of the
Caribou soundscape is the lush-
ness of the album's terrain as it
moves fluidly and energetically
from psychedelic rock to electronica and hip hop. Through
"I've Lived on a Dirt Road All my
Life" to "Kd You'll Move Mountains," the meditation on simple
musical motifs transforms the
instrumentation of Up in Flames
into a form of reflection. The
syncretic sounds that populate
the album's environment blur
the boundaries of genre with a
playful joy that seems to have
been undermined by the identity crisis Snaith underwent in
its wake. The re-release of Up
in Flames will hopefully return
to Caribou some of the territory lost between names, and
it remains clear that one name
or another, the spirit of the Up in
Flames persists in spite of itself.
Mono Brown
Reina
(Nettwerk)
At the forefront (at least as
far as the rest of North America has noticed) of the growing
Mexican musical revolution,
Kinky's newest disc, Reina,
packs a wallop of high-intensity, effervescent sonic joy. The
album has them continuing in
their Latin/rock/funk groove.
After all, if it's not broke, why
mess with it? The tracks on
Reina ooze fun dance-pop melodies with tight vocal harmonies, caliente Mexican beats and
even some retro (some might
say cheesy, but hey, it works!)
electronic effects, blended with
fist-pumping rock riffs. Usually
when a group tries to weave so
many threads of influence they ,
end up in no man's land, but
Kinky make it work seamlessly
and flow incredibly well.
Reina particularly reminds
me of the sort of sound Duran
Duran were desperately trying
to knock off during their late
80s slump, except that Kinky
actually meet and exceed that
goal.
All in all, if this disc doesn't
drag your ass onto the dance
floor, you're beyond hope.
Drake   _t
Discorder     23 LIVE
pWERY SINGLE SUNDAY
RETROFIT
SL!Q§p4JVE
CLASSICSOUL, R&B
AND ROCK COVERS
J^SOUL STREAM HEAVIES
TIM FULLER <_k COMPANY
$5.50 DOUBLE HIGHBALLS / $8 COVER
I'd been
to Stanley Park to watch
the sun rise for some time
id I figured before the Raconteurs was the best time to do
it. Knowing full well that I would
need my rest for the show ahead,
I found a nice shaded park bench
and lay down with my blanket
and a tossed salad. One ride on
the mini-train, two bowls of salad, and countless trips around
the park later, it was time to line
up.
All throughout the opening act, Kelly Stolts, eager Raconteurs fans sat on the grass,
fidgeting with anticipation. I
spread out my blanket and lay
on my back, batting away a few
mosquitoes and scratching at
the marks left by the ones that
survived. All around me people
smoked continuously, chatting
loudly about their expectations
for the show. All were soon to be
blown away, replaced with an
amazing brain fuck, an intense
blur that involved wailing and
screeching guitar solos, howling vocals, steady bass lines and
bluesy beats.
As the crowd was starting to
get into the western tunes blasting out of the speakers while
roadies set up as quickly as they
could, out walked little Jack Lawrence (bass), closely followed by
Patrick Keeler (drums), Brendan
Benson (guitar and vox) and Jack
White (guitar and vox). They
kicked off their set with "Intimate Secretary," which was a
seemingly unlikely choice
over their much better-
known single "Steady as She
Goes."
The Raconteurs at Malkin Bowl
I was surprised and delighted
to hear it first, and immediately
the mood in the park shifted.
People began dancing and bobbing their heads to the rhythm,
while White, Benson and Lawrence chimed in with the lyrics. It was a great choice for an
opener, and White came in with
a screaming guitar solo almost
immediately, which dropped
jaws all over the place. Already
you could tell that they had met,
and were going to exceed all expectations.
Jack White is a musician
known for the emotion he puts
forward on stage, and he was
definitely not lacking in that
department. He wailed and
whispered his way through an
amazing re-working of Nancy
Sinatra's "Bang Bang (My Baby
Shot Me Down)." While White
hopped around the stage, Lawrence seemed off in his own
world. He played steadily and
with ease, not disturbing the
melodic peace they created up
on stage.
From the harmonized vocals
in tunes such as "Store Bought
Bones," to the insane and in sync
instrumental of "Blue Veins,"
The Raconteurs delivered. They
have a Jot of hype surrounding
them, and after witnessing that
show, I think they deserve every
piece of it.
Sarah Fischer
Photo by Kimberely Day
Photos By Meg Bourne
Lotus Child
July 21
The Media Club
Floors rumbled at the Lotus
Child Gossip Diet CD release party. The show kicked off the Vancouver piano-based indie band's
West Coast tour with one hot
hullabaloo. I mean sauna hot.
Dan Mangan opened, setting an
intimate mood with the crowd
seated cross-legged on the floor,
everyone agog at the levels of his
guttural sound. Next up, Mother
had the house abuzz with their
folkie-funky crisp-clean quality.
If the crowd wasn't dancing by
that point, Lotus Child got them
jumpin' (literally).
During songs such as "Archaeologists," a few surprise
voices joined in, as members
from Hey Ocean! and The Painted Birds jumped on stage. The
surprises continued into "Gossip
Diet" with vocal group Aliqua
joining the euphony, reproducing the CD sound as much as
possible. Guitarist and lead
singer Zachary Gray struck up a
roundelay of "We're not perfect!"
booming through the crowd.
Difficult to peg down style-
wise. Gossip Diet ranges from
funky numbers like "Archaeologists" to foot-stomping rock-
out "Lids" to calm but elating
"Coelacanth," withal remaining
musically exoteric, and yet distinguishing its dancy demiurgic
self in the indie rock genre.
The night was somewhat of a
family affair, as Mother's self-titled CD is also Howard Redekopp
produced. Castle Project topped
off the night with a din of songs
sounding more or less the same.
Nonetheless, the sauna cooled at
lam and we were all dog-tired
and ready for a shower. You can
catch Lotus Child playing their
homecoming show August 6th at
the Backstage Lounge.
Marlaina Mah    £| CITR CHARTS!
/^^^^^^^^^^^StriC% the dopest hits of July
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23". pteHusbands
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The Tong Dynasty
4      Fond Of Tigers*
A Thing To Live With
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______^_W__W___%W_W_W____~
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11 -r_cB*ydes*JJ .
12 Bella/Columbus*
Split Ep
1 it    Screaming EAglfs*
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14    Girl Talk
Night Ripper
IS    Camera Obscart     '
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Kranky
Barsuk
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Matador
- Friendly Fi
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25
Mojave 3
Puzzles ££mJHKj£:
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26
Sonic Youth
Rathe, Ripped
DGC
27
Thom Yorke
The Eraser
XL
28
Cheap Suits*
One Giant Leap
MapleMusic
29
The Matadors*
HorrorbillymK)
Stereo Dynamite
30
BeYourOwnPet
Ecstatic Peace
31
The Black Angels
Light to The Attic
32
Pony Up!
Make Love To The Judges With Yo
urEyes
Dim Mak
33
The Paper Cranes*
S/T
Unfamiliar
34
Hot Chip
The Warning
EMI
35
Andrew Duke*
Consumer Vs. User
Phthato
36
The Eastern Stars*
juiy y>: 96i
Mental Monkey
37
Cut Chemist
The Audience's Listening
Warner
38
The Knife
Silent Shout
Mute
39
Epsilons
S/T
Retard Disco
40
Senor Coconut
Yellow Fever
Essay
41
New York Dolls
- One Sag It Will Please Us To Retmnber Even This
Roadrunner
42
Panurge*
Walking In The Fog
Last Gang
43
Kinnie Stan-
Anything
MapleMusic
44
45
Various Artists
Mr. Lif
Radio Thailand
Mo' Mega
Sublime Frquencies
Definitive Jux
46
A Northern Chorus*
Before We All Go To Pieces
Black Mountain
47
Otto Von Schirach
Maxipad Detention
Ipecac
48
Psapp
The Only Thing I Ever Wanted
Domino
49
Various*
Dig Your Roots: Aboriginal
Dyr
ctrip.t FETISH DRESS CODE
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#1 Best Fetish Night In Vancouver
(Georgia Straights Best of 2002)
Sin City's DJ Pandemonium #2 DJ in Vancouver
(Georgia Straight Best of 2002 & 2004)
Most Radical Fetish Night in Vancouver
(Terminal City 2005 Vancouver Vanguards Survey)
"ern Place To Get Some
D5 Vancouver Vanguards Survey)
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(Georgia Straight Best Of 2005)
VANCOUVER'S WILDEST FETISH PARTY
HOW TWICE EVERY MOKTH!
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IDS THE
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Discorder     25 \ You can listen to CiTR online at www.citr.ca or on the air at 101.9 FM_^p
6am
7am
Sam
9am
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lpm
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Parts Unknown
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Democracy Now
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ils_fB_l
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' QUEER?FM.
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Practice
the Jazz Show
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Go
Necessary Voices
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Sometimes
why
Blue
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Hans Kloss'
Misery Hour
AURAt*T_»f_ljl__
t_VT. FROM TufepERBIRI)
These are the Breaks
GENER^aN'ANMHir^TION
Nardwuar Presents
African Rhythms
Planet Lovetron
* I3^tR.<l5M£_SeW
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Sl^N/iupTic.SA^WMSfcw-
L^..
I SUNDAY
TANA RADIO (World)
SHOOKSHOOKTA (World)
THE ROCKERS SHOW (Reggae)
Reggae inna all styles and fashion.
BLOOD ON THE SADDLE
(Roots)
Real cowshit-caught-in-yer-boots
country.
CHIPS WTTH EVERYTHING
(Pop)
British pop music from all
decades. International pop
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SAINT TROPEZ (Pop)    ....-""
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Dedicated to the gay, lesbian,
bisexual, and transexual communities of Vancouver. Lots
of human interest features,
background on current issues,
and great music.
26    August 2006
RHYTHMSINDIA (World)
Rhythmsindia features a wide
range of music from India,
including popular music from the
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music, semi-classical music such
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language numbers.
TRANCENDANCE (Dance)
Join us in practicing the ancient
art of rising above common
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Smiley Mike lays down the lat
trance cuts to propel us
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Your favourite Brown-sters, James
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the familiar and exotic in a blend
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LIONS AND TIGERS AND
BEARS...(Edectic)
A mix of indie pop, indie rock,
and pseudo underground hip hop,
with your host, Jordie Sparkle.
ALT. RADIO (Talk)
Hosted ly David B.
PARTS UNKNOWN (Poplar
Underground pop fqrJhtfminuses
with the occa^fm interview
withrorfnost, Chris.
'S GET BAKED w/matt & dave
(Eclectic;
Vegan baking with "rock stars"
like Sharp Like Knives, Whitey
Houston, The Novaks and more.
NATIVE SOLIDARITY NEWS
(Talk)
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 funding.
\SA_X.GS.<TaJk)        ^jt*
Womens MtematjgpgftSews
Gathering $g^!ee.
SCpfl^JITE DREEMS (Eclectic)
KARUSU (World)
THE JAZZ SHOW (Jazz)
Vancouver's longest running
primetime jazz program. Hosted
by the ever-suave, Gavin Walter.
August 7: Birthdays that fall on
a Monday abound this year and
tonight we celebrate the birthday
of one of the most unique
musicians in all jazz history...
Rahsaan Roland Kirk with his
album Rip, Rig and Panic with
JakiByard (piano) and the great
drummer Elvin Jones Kirk would
have been 70 today.
August 14: Gavin takes the night
off tonight and Charles Burnham
sthe
UKugust 21: VWlliam "Count"
Basie is one of the most important
figures in jazz not only as a
pianist and a bandleader as an
institution. Basie died in 1984 but
his influence continues. Tonight
one of the finest Basie dates is on
tap—The Atomic Basic. The band
at it's best plays the arrangements
of the great Neal Hefti. Basie
would be 102 today!
August 28: One last birthday for
August is that of New York born
pianist/composer Kenny Drew.
Drewgrew up in Harlem with
Sonny Rollins, Jackie Mclean and
Arthur Taylor and was a New
York mainstay until moving to
Denmark in 1964. Drew died
there on August 4,1993. He
would have been 78 today. IDs
only album under his own name
for Blue Note is tonight's feature.
Undercurrent is a quintet session
of all-Drew tunes and features a
front line of Hank Mobley (tenor
saxophone) and Freddie Hubbard
(trumpet). The pots are on!
VENGEANCE IS lVnNE (Punk)
All the best the world of punk has
fo offer, in the wee hours of the
morn.
_____________ TUESDAY
PACIFIC PICHDV (Roots)
Bluegrass, old-time music, and its
derivatives with Arthur and the
lovely Andrea Berman.
HIGHBRED VOICES (World)
THIRD TIME'S THE CHARM
(Rock)
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
<lwrninsixtynine@hotmail.com>
MORNING AFTER
SHOW (Edectic) 4
REEL TO REAL (Talk)
Movie reviews
EN AVANT LA 1VIUSIQUE (French)
En Avant La Musique! se
concentre sur le i
genres mu
francophonie ouverte a tous les
courants. This program focuses
on cross-cultural music and its
influence on mostly Francophone
musicians.
WENER'S BARBEQUE (Sports)
Join the sports department for
their coverage of the T-Birds.
FLEX YOUR HEAD (Hardcore)
Up the punx, down the emo!
Keepin' it real since 1989, yo.
Flexyourhead.
SALARIO JMDDNIMO (World)
Salario JMinimo, the best rock in
Spanish show in Canada.
CAUGHT IN THE RED (Rock)
Trawling the trash heap of over 50
years' worth of rock n' roll debris.
Digit!
PLUTONIAN NIGHTS (Eclectic)
AURAL TENTACLES (Eclectic)
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.
■■■WEDNESDAY
SUBURBAN JUNGLE (Eclectic)
ANOIZE (Noise)
Luke Meat irritates and educates
through musical deconstruction.
Recommended for the strong.
DEMOCRACY I
Independent )$00_UMed ly
flfgjounalists Amy
Kan and Juan Gonzalez.
""RUlVmLETONE RADIO (Rock)
Primitive, fumed-out garage mayhem!
NECESSARY VOICES (Talk)
Socio-political.enviromental
activist news and spoken word
with some music too.
AND SOMETIMES WHY
(Pop/Eclectic)
First Wednesday of every month.
BLUE MONDAY (Goth/Ina\istrid)
Vancouver's only industrial-
electronic-retro-goth program.
Music to schtomptoThosted by
Coreen.
JUICEBOX (Talk)
Developing your relational
and individual sexual health,
expressing diversity, celebrating
queerness, and encouraging
pleasure at all stages. Sexuality
educators Julia and Alix
will quench your search for
responsible, progressive sexuality
over your life span!
<www.juiceboxradio.com>
FOLK OASIS (Roots)
Two hours of eclectic roots music.
Don't own any Birkenstocks?
Allergic to patchouli? C'mon in! A
kumbaya-free zone since 199 7.
HANS KLOSS' MISERY HOUR
(Hans Kloss)
This is pretty much the best thing
__■___■ THURSDAY
END OF IHE WORLD NEWS
(Eclectic)
SWEET 'N' HOT (Jazz)
Sweet dance music and hot jazz ,
from the 1920s, 30s, and40s.
WE ALL FALL DOWN (Edectic)
Punk rock, indie pop, and
whatever else I deem worthy.
Hosted by a closet nerd.
RHYMES & REASONS (Hip Hop)
MY SCIENCE PROJECT (Talk)
Zoom a little zoom on the My
Science Project rocket ship,
piloted by your host, Julia, as
we navigate eccentric, underexposed, always relevant and
plainly cool scientific research,
technology, and poetry
(submissions welcome).
<myscienceprojectiadio@yahoo.ca>
PEDAL REVOLUTION (Talk)
AFROBEAT (World)
Music of the world, with a special
dance around African drum beats.
My passion is music from the African Diaspora. Catch up on the latest
and reminisce on classic spins.
<m37afrobeat@37ahoo.com>
EXQUISITE CORPSE
(Experimental)
Experimental, radio-art, sound
collage, field recordings, etc.
Recommended for the insane.
LIVE FROM THUND1: R BIRD
RADIO HELL (We Mi^09-'
Live From Thund^p#Radio
Hell shoi$_8$#1bcal talent..LIVE!
Hgp^ipflon't even ask about the
technical side of this.
LAUGH TRACKS (Talk)
____________■ FRIDAY
CUTE BAND ALERT! (Eclectic)
SKA-T'S SCENIC DRIVE (Ska)
Email requests to:
djska_t@hotmail.com
THESE ARE THE BREAKS
(HpHop)
Top notch crate digger DJ Avi
Shack mixes underground hip
hop, old school classics, and
original breaks.
RADIO ZERO (Edectic)
NARDWUAR THE HU1VIAN
SERVIETTE PRESENTS
(Nardwuar)
NEWS 101 (Talk)
A volunteer-produced, student and
community newscast featuring
news, sports and arts. Reports by
peoplelikeyou. "Become the Media."
THE CANADIAN WAY (Eclectic)
Independent Canadian music
from almost every genre
imaginable covering the east
coast to the left coast and all
points in between. Yes, even
Montreal!
<thecanadianway@popstar.com>
SAMSQUANCH'S HIDEAWAY
(Eclectic)
AFRICAN RHYTHMS (World)
David "Love" Jones brings you the
best new and old jazz, soul, Latin,
samba, bossa and African music
from around the world.
<www.africamhythmsradio.com>
Music inspired by Chocolate
Thunder; Robert Robot drops
electro past and present, hip hop
and intergalactic funkmanship
<robertrobot@gmail.com>
IN THE SHADOWS (Hip Hop)
I LIKE THE SCRIBBLES (Eclectic)
Beats mixed with audio from old
films and clips from the internet.
10% discount for callers who are
certified insane. Hosted by Chris D.
THE VAMPIRE'S BALL (Goth/
Industrial/Metal)
Dark, sinister music to soothe
and/or move the Dragon's soul.
Hosted by Drake.
<thevampiresball@yahoo.ca>
■■■I SATURDAY
THE SATURDAY EDGE (Roots)
Studio guests, new releases,
British comedy sketches, folk
music calendar, and ticket
giveaways.
GENERAnONANlVffll_IATION
(Pink)
A fine mix of streetpunk and old
school hardcore backed by band
interviews, guest speakers, and
social commentary.       a,v!f$
<www.streetpim^^|^#ntt>
<craslmb^MPi|i*@yahoo.ca>
POW«tCHORD (Metal)
fJpKrcouver's only true metal
show; local demo tapes, imports,
and other rarities. Gerald
Rattlehead, Geoff the Metal Pimp
and guests do the damage.
CODE BLUE (Roots)
From backwoods delta low-down
slide to urban harp honks, blues,
and blues roots with your hosts
Jim, Andy and Paul.
THE LEO RAMIREZ SHOW
(World)
The best of music, news, sports,
and commentary from around
the local and international Latin
American communities.
OUR WAVE (World)
News, arts, entertainment and
music for the Russian community,
local and abroad.
SHADOW JUGGLERS
(Dance/Electronic)
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.
SYNAPTIC SANDWICH
(Dance/Electromc/Edectic)
BEATS FROM THE BASEMENT
(HipHop)   ^
■THEHIGHLIGHT
Queer FM is a show that combines
in-depth analysis of LGBT current
events with human interest stories, arts
coverage and news items from around the
world, plus great music by artists of all
sexual orientations and gender identities.
On air since 1993, Queer FM has covered
all the major queer rights battles in Canada
and the US, and has offered a uniquely
queer perspective on the larger stories of
the day. We spoke to queers in Hong Kong
during the handover to China, we followed
queer efforts to help hurricane Katrina
survivors, and next month, listen for our
coverage of Jerusalem World Pride, as it
unfolds in the midst of the Middle East
conflict.
In addition, Queer FM provides
coverage of new books, movies, music and
more—often with a little help from our
friends. Los Angeles film critic, Steve Pride,
produces previews of queer films, complete
with interviews with the stars; JD Doyle of
Houston's Queer Music Heritage program
co-hosts the "Audiofile," a monthly review
of the best queer independent musical
releases, which comes to use courtesy of
This Way Out, the syndicated gay and
lesbian radio magazine. To mark this year's
Vancouver International Jazz Festival, J.D.
also loaned us his hour-long special on
queers in jazz music.
So what's to come on Queer FM? Well,
in addition to our coverage of Jerusalem
World Pride, rumour has it our next door
neighbours in Washington State will have
a Supreme Court decision on same-sex
marriage soon, and we'll be covering that
when it happens. And, of course, Stephen
Harper has promised to reopen the issue of
same-sex marriage in Canada this fall, so
join us as and our resident gay Conservative
pundits as we revisit it with him. Plus,
listen for our previews of the Out on Screen
Queer Film and Video Festival!    4*
IP RECORDING ART1ST5 FROM SEATTLE
m INVISIBLE EYES
orwamhs recording artists from Portland
EUXAUTRES
WITH SPKIAl G0EST5
THE RADIO
FRIPAY AUGUST II
THE LAMPLIGHTER
RAINBOW ©UARTX RECORt
FROM MONTREAL
tne HIGH DIALS
WITH
ASTHMATIC KITTY RECORDING ARTISTS
SHAPES Amazes
ANP
the WEATHER
THORS. AUGUST 31
THE LAMPLIGHTER
HIGHTOKE PRESENTS
VXVA ?OCE
m BELLA * X* MEDIAS RES
FRI SEPT 22 6 THE MEDIA CLl/B
ROMH.E-IINE (604* S73-GOGO
THE SWEET ANO THE SOUR
COMPLEMENT EACH OTHER HERE IN
UNEXPECTED AND DELICIOUS WAYS.
"BREATHE THIS ALBUM IN.
""ILS IF 2IB--PIIIF WHISKEY,
FARMERS' FIELDS AND
THE OPEN ROAD."
coming this fall:
GREAT AUNT IDA
BUGHOUSE S
Discorder     27 BLOOD MERIDIAN
Kick up Hie Dust
CD
7:00 PM
I  prime
set-up time. Books away,
computer off, vacuumed, shoes
tidied. Best to get a little mellow to get prepared, but not too
mellow. A drink, maybe some dope, definitely music. Okay,
let's see. Ah, Matt Camirand's Blood Meridian Good tunes
here. This is fine stuff from these local heroes and very, very,
very good friends of Black Mountain. Kick up the Dust
seems made on a back porch somewhere. Like the Rolling
Stones, Blood Meridian has a folksy, bluesy temperament
But also like the Stones, they're realfy more "city rustic", if
that's a proper description, than "rural rustic," with "country" a
horizon not a boundary. These guys mostly favor atmosphere
and presence over fireworks. But with oomph in their back
pockets besides, the band always does the right thing, too. All
in all, some soulful, laidfaack rock and roll played with genuine
warmth and aura. Hmm, I think this is a major label debut, or
something. Sure seems up for the job to me.
CD 12.98
COMETS ON FIRE
CDAJP
know—the new Comets on Fire. That last one totally ripped,
all blown out, full volume, psych-rock mayhem, but this one
is different, much less straight on, way more complex. It's not
less rock, exactly, maybe even the opposite, just not as loud.
In a way, Avatar is exactly classic rock in feel and style, but
without any hint of mainstream banality. It's the classic rock
you wished classic rock would be all the time, not just only
every third song on the radio. It's like the 70s were brought to
the present without the commercialized gutting of FM radio.
Ah, yes. Is it fair to call this mature? I mean mature in the
best way: wiser, more experienced, deeper, and more deliberate. As much as I loved the last one, this keeps growing on
me with each listen. Also, I'm a huge fan of Six Organs of
Admittance, especially the newest one. I guess the other
dudes in the band have some other new projects. Hope they
put out records soon. Ah, this plays well for the earliest of the
early birds, too. Listen and learn, friends.
CD 16.98 LP 14.98
WHITE WHALE
WWICD
9:00 PM
are arriving. Gome early for the
free food! I still love them. But
everyone is sober, thus a bit contemplative, maybe just shy, seeking distraction. Now is the time for something new on the
stereo, something to talk about. Here we go. White Whale.
Merge Records' latest Has that guy in it that used to be in
that early indie rock band Botteiglonf. I used to have a few of
«^7incbes. Catchy stuff. Oh, those were the days....A*8T@
this is a big change from that earty stuff, much fuller and
super melodic. Must be a way bigger band. Duh—■
Butterglory was a two-piece! I wonder, is it fair and right to
call things post-Arcade Fire? Sounds stupid, but it has a ker-.
nel of truth to it, I say. For example, this surely seems post-
Arcane Fire. Something about the details and textures, the
longer songs. On the other hand, it would also sound totally
perfect playing on my IPod after something like the new
Raconteurs, or maybe even newer Flaming Lips. Hey, why
not? Ifs all good.
JAMES FIGURINE
Mistake Mistake
Mistake Mistake CD/LP
1 rvnn dmDrinksm8ein9
I W. V/U  I   IVI down so it's time to
raise the tempo some, but not too much. The
Postal Service was a huge favorite for most
and a guilty pleasure for some. Ah, Death Cab—with mass appeal comes
debate. Whatever. I go back and forth. Nevertheless, always seems to work
fine in a party scene. Even the hippest of guests don't often question a track
or two. Mostly. Okay, let's see how this plays. James F .urine is the "other
guy" in the Postal Service, Jimmy Tamborello, the MITEL guy. Although
this seems a little less instantaneous than Postal Service, more electronic,
it's still great. Perhaps even more interesting, sans scare-quotes. Following
the title, I gather this represents a land of learning curve" experiment for
e research into "new techno," to give it a name. Like Isolee
, perhaps Junior Boys, too, maybe evena little Richardo
, if not as lush. Hey—New Techno. Did I just unintentionally coin
' a new pop music term? Quick—somebody email Pitchfork! Bwa-ha-ha.
Just kidding. Hmm, some good guest vocals here, but no Ben Gibbard to
split the throng.
CD 14.98   IP 16.98
SEBADOH
III (+bonus tracks) 2CD
1-4 . (\C\ D ft ft Now were swinging. And I'm fairly drunk. What
I . UU  I   IVI do I need? Oh yeah, a total classic. Ledlep? Not
yet too soon. Here we go. Sebadoh HI. Right right. This new double CD
reissue is totally awesome, like those Pavement reissues. Almost forgotten
how great—and important—this record was. Changed my life, man. Indie
rock. And probably not just mine. The Freed Pig is so true. Sing to me,
Barlow, sing my inner life. What a way to start an album. WE ARE ALL
FREED PIGS! Okay, okay, maybe some of these tracks are a bit too moody
for a party like this, too irrtroyerted. But still, the truth—the TRUTH! Life and
' love is fucking complicated shit. And here it is, maybe even more truthful
now than ever. Like a fine wine, even? Yes. This is the album where
Sebadoh most seems like a group, too, with obvious input from Gaffney
and Loewenstein. When did this come out the first time? 93? 92? 1991!
Damn, has it been that long? Ah, life.
2CD 16.98
ONEIDA
Happy New Year
CD
12:00 AM £
| to change the mood again. Was a
j little maudlin there. Try this
instead. Oneida. Up With People kicks and kicks. I think
I'll play it three times in a row. Yeah! Also, I love that idiosyncratic, monk-like, eastern-scale, "parsley, sage and
;i thyme" singing they do. So ethereal. It's tike if Devo and
Nomeansno were members of an Early Music society-
nerds who rock, rock hard. That guitar-playing dude from
Trans Am/Fucking Champs seems like a permanent mem-
Ober now. He's even got his own Oneida pseudonym,
- Double Rainbow, adding to Fat Bobby's keyboards, Hanoi
a Jane's bass and Kid Million's drums. Saw them play a
few weeks ago. Damn, they're impressively tight live.
/-Obviously hard working guys, but they make It look so
casual, not effortless so much as inevitable, as if they had
. v no other choice. They exude humble self-satisfaction, a
" ttappy kind of focus. But why Happy New Year, I wonder?
Irs August! Maybe they have a special Oneida calendar,
too, maybe borrowed from the American Oneida Nation. If
so, I wonder how old I am in Oneida years? Merely a
babe, I bet
THE KNIFE
Silent Shout CD
table away to get sc
ad hoc dance floor space happening. Talk about |
prime Vancouver real estate—here on my
stained carpet! Okay, whafs going to get this
going? Here we go, Silent Shout by The Knife.
Perfect. These brother and sister Swedes kinda snuck up on me. Their
older track Heartbeats is supposed to be fantastic, a near classic. I think
this is their third full length already. Ifs gotta be their breakthrough. I'm
hooked now. Finally! Sounds super cool to me. Kinda dark-hued but very
catchy. Irs like if electro regressed, spending some time listening to older
techno and early EBM records in order to get interesting again, reinvented.
But it's not a lame-ass pastiche, more a sweet new synthesis—a synthesis
that's heavy on the synthesizers. Man, the vocals are so eerie, foreboding.
They're layered and effected, full of texture. It's like there are lots of different singers singing, not just one woman. Kinda creepy! This is good for
both the brain and the body, I figure. Just the way I like it.
CD 16.98
GIRL TALK
Night Ripper CD
2*C\C\  likft The place is packed
.UU MlVI now. My neighbors
must hate me. Oh well. Time to get a little nuts I
with some slamming, hardcore audio collage— |
ha-ha-ha! GM Talk is some kinda super mash-
up guy, a mash-up-mash-up-ist, a world-historical mash-upper. Oh. My. God. This is incredible, overwhelming. Like listening to every radio station in the city play seamlessly at once. This must
be what it's like to be crazy! I love it. Man, how does it al! fit together? Oh
shit, yeah—awesome, mind-blowing. Reminds me as much of Jason
Forrest as it does Plunderphonics, with the super-density of the latter but
the dance floor-centricrty of the former. Right on, motherfucker—more the
former and less the latter, more the former and less the latter! Man, I'm
going to have to listen to this sober, too, to try and source the samples. Or
is that too nerdy. Probably. Whatever. For now, it's best to let it wash over
me, a mighty spring of data chunks and sound bites. I'm so wasted.
MSTRKRFT
The Looks CD
Time'
go for it.
Come on, come on, come on!
This is the last chance before
the cops shut us down, man.
Huh, what's that? Huh? Okay,
okay. Where's the stereo. Move
over. Let me at it. Here we go.
What, right? No, no, no, yes!
MSTRKRFT! The Looks. Ah-
woo! Rock it! Turn it up! Turn it
way up! Can you believe it-
more from back east. Where's
the fucking party music from
our town, man? Bullshit. This
has whafs-his-name in it, the
bass player guy. Right—Jesse
Keeler. Ha-ha-ha, couldn't
remember. Check out the album
cover. Cool, eh? You know, sure
it was repetitious, and sure
Pitchfork slammed it, and
maybe it sucks a little, but, to be
honest, I totally loved that Death
from Above 1979 remix CD. I
play it aH the time, man. It's
cool, okay? I don't care. But this
rocks way harder than that,
obviously. More solid, more
moustaches! Moustaches! Okay,
move over, man, give me some
space. Get another drink.
MSTRKRFT! MSTRKRFT! Yeah!
Oh shit! Is that the cops?
CD 16.98
CD 18.98
CD 16.86
CD 12.98
SNACKS AND DRINKS AND SUCH
BURIAL -S/T
ANI DIFRANCO-Reprieve
DIRTY PRETTY THINGS -
MATTHEW FRIEDBERGER - Whiter
THE LONG WINTERS- Putting the Days to Bed
NOUVELLE VAGUE - Band A Part
OLD 97'S HIT BY A TRAIN-The Best of Old
School
Waterloo
GOLDEN SMOG-Another Fine Day
97's
DJ SHADOW-The Outsider
HELLA-Acoustics
RAZORUGHT-Razorlight
MICHAEL FRANTI-SPEARHEAD
HOT SNAKES - Thunder Down
RATATAT-Classics
-Yell Fire!
Under
THE SADIES- in Concert
FRENCH KICKS - Two Thousand
JOAN OF ARC - Eventually, All At
TORTOISE-Box Set
LISA GERMANO - In the Maybe
WOODEN WAND AND THE SKY HIGH BAND -
World
JURASSIC S-Feedback
Second Attention
MASTAKILLA- Made In Brooklyn
XIU XIU-Air Force

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