DJ SPOTLIGHT #1 - Chris Aitkens

Ever wondered who exactly was behind your favourite show on CJLO? Starting this week, CJLO 1690 AM presents DJ Spotlight, a brand new series aiming to connect the station's DJs to the public. All the DJs answer the same fixed questions—meaning it's up to them to make their answers worth your while. For the first instalment of the series, we introduce you Chris Aitkens, alias Chris the Frog, host of Sewer Spewer.

Hello! My name is Chris. I'm a journalism student, professional screamer and lover of all sounds that are painful to the ears.

What is your show on CJLO?

My show Sewer Spewer is a weekly guide through the Montreal underground punk and metal scene. I like to promote shows featuring local talent and I make it a point to play extreme and unclean forms of music on the air.

What’s the best thing about hosting your show?

Coming up with a different playlist every week allows me to discover new bands and find events happening in Montreal. By the time I see a band live in concert, I would have listened to their songs at least three times that week. The lyrics are fresh in my mind and I usually sing along.

What was the first LP/cassette that you bought with your own money?

I unfortunately don't have a record player, and the only cassette player I use is in my parents' laundry room, so I normally listen to tapes while I'm folding my clothes. I believe the first tape I ever bought was by Castevet at their last show, so in 2008?

Which album has left the greatest impact on you?

Dare to Ride the Heliocraft by Trigger Effect. I bought it at the release show in 2007, when I was only 15. I still listen to it to this day. Trigger Effect is and will be my all-time favourite band. And their debut album is a masterpiece. I know all the words by heart. There's no pause between songs, they bleed into each other, so you need to listen to it in its entirety. It's 21 minutes of pure chaotic bliss.

Best show of your life?

That's a tough question. I would have to say one of the editions of Fear and Loathing in Montreal. I was too young to see most of them, but I was able to catch the last three (there was 10 in total). The show was hosted by Trigger Effect (as mentioned before, my fav’ band) and had two stages: one for bands, and the other for freakshows and contests like waterboarding, eating challenges and testicle tug-of-war. My little brother had to take a shot of pepper spray for a contest, I felt so sorry for him. The bands were always amazing though, bands like the Sainte Catherines, Barn Burner and the BCASA, to name a few.

…What about the worst?

The worst is most likely a show I played, probably when I or some other member in the band was too drunk to perform properly. It's been a reoccurring incident in every band I've played in, so there's too many shows to think of. I can't think of one specific show, probably because I've blocked them all out of my memory because it was such a disaster. What I've learned is that it's important to drink responsibly leading up to when you take the stage. Once the set is over, then it's perfectly fine to drink as recklessly as you please.

What do you collect?

I collect a lot of things. I collect pins, patches, stickers (though I'm running out of surfaces to put stickers on), VHS tapes, zines, comics. I'm currently trying to build a CD collection of Montreal bands; it's been getting pretty big, thanks to the free CD bins in front of CJLO.

Favourite food?

I would have to say pizza. It's the one food I can eat three times a day and not get sick of. I even have two pizza tattoos on my thighs; one's a Pizza Jesus and the other is a Pizza Satan. I'm saving up for a Pizza Illuminati back piece.

Any famous last words?

Like, what will be written on my grave? I suppose I would want to be remembered for my passion for art, so maybe it can say, “He loved music. He loved Montreal.”

On the topic of famous last words, I just want to say that through art you can live forever. Sure, your body might not be here forever, but the picture you painted, or the music you recorded or the words you spoke on the radio will remain. The key to immortality is creativity.

Don't miss the 100th episode of Sewer Spewer this Wednesday, 1 PM, only on CJLO!