Today on Beyond the Black Rainbow- Talking to Loosestrife about Howlarts Album Launch: 4pm

Today on a special episode of Beyond the Black Rainbow, we will be talking with one half of Montreal duo Loosestrife regarding their upcoming album launch show in Howl Arts Festival (Sunday at 8pm- Le Cagibi- with Moss Lime and CHOCHOTTES). This show is co-presented by their label Saturn Returns: "a queer feminist collective of musicians and artists working to build welcoming spaces for accessible music creation, distribution, and performance in occupied Kanien'kehá:ka territory (Montréal)." Saturn Returns is home to Doilies, Heathers and Loosestrife- and all three bands will play a label showcase June 7 at La Vitrola in Suoni Per Il Popolo Festival. Tune in today at 4pm to find out more!

(Poster by Leah Girardo).

Monday, April 20th, 2015

Hosted by: Danny Aubry

Stories by: Julia Bryant, Emeline Vidal & Danny Aubry

Produced by: Julia Bryant

FIFA 2015: 'Entre Ciel et Terre: Quand le hip hop devient art' is a dazzling experience

This spring marked the 33rd edition of the International Festival of Films on Art. The festival was founded in 1981 by René Rozon and has thrived over the course of the past three decades. Born out of a legacy of innovation, culture and technology, FIFA maintains the artistic legacy established by Expo 67’. It is only appropriate that one of the highlights of this year’s festival was a multimedia screening of the hip-hop documentary Entre Ciel et Terre: Quand le hip hop devient art.

Combining dance, cinema and music, the event wowed the audiences at the Société des arts technologiques. For those familiar with the legacy of Expo, having the film being screened simultaneously on 6 different screens harkens to the Labyrinth Pavillon, one of the most groundbreaking cinema events of the latter half of the 21st century. The Labyrinth was a multimedia experience that told the story of man, beginning with an extended screen (which would eventually lead to invention of Imax technologies) before members passed through a long prism like hallway before entering the final chamber which used 5 screens (Entre Ciel et Terre uses 6!).

Assuming those who planned the event had this in their minds, it becomes a very powerful allusion to that original film which documented the origins of man. The way that it ties to the physicality of hip-hop, as both subject of the film and the actual live performance is quite remarkable. Not unlike the film, this connection uses pastiche and homage in order to suggest that hip-hop is as worthy a subject as the origin of life itself.

Directed by Eric Elléna the film follows several dance crews in France as they divide their time between competitions and training. The film similarly documents Anthony Egéa and the founding of a school where he brings in street dancers in the hopes of teaching them the fundamentals of academic dance theory. The film explores not only how hip-hop has changed by innovators like Anthony Egea who have brought in classical training into the world of hip hop but also how hip hop has injected new energy into contemporary dance.

The film depicts a new kind of dance that bridges the gap between low and high art, as well as incorporating elements of gymnastics, circus arts and martial arts. Elléna shoots the dance sequences with great reverence, incorporating well-used slow motion to great effect. The dance sequences are vibrant - and are beautifully complemented by the live performances (performed by Let Your Art Flow et Forêt Noire, whose style blends more traditional hip-hop with classical training not unlike what is presented in the film). The entire event is a beautiful ode to the power of dance as an art and a way of life. 

Shawn Katz, author of Generation Rising, on The Commonwealth Conundrum: Today 4-6pm!

Today on a special edition of The Commonwealth Conundrum Show , author Shawn Katz will be in studio at 5:30pm chatting about his new book Generation Rising: The Time of the Québec Student Spring. It is the first English-language book on the Printemps érable of 2012.

"Generation Rising is the story of the most important mass mobilization in Canada’s history and one of the most powerful anti-austerity movements in the world. It is the story of six months of brutalization of youth by the police forces of the capitalist establishment, as the students went toe-to-toe against the corrupt and autocratic élite in an effort to construct a horizontal, participative and grassroots democracy. It is the story of the Internet generation deploying its mastery of social media to harness the forces of hundreds of thousands, and ultimately defeat a battle-hardened premier. At the end of it all, Québec’s first social media mobilization had laid the foundations for a brave new future, where the old world of order and authority might finally be swept aside to make way for a new, twenty-first-century democracy."  Source:

Rebecca and Danny will get the behind-the-scenes scoop on the book and Shawn's take on the current anti-austerity movement. They will also preview the book launch: happening Wed, Apr 22 at The Hive Solidarity Café Co-op MEZZ- at Concordia's SGW campus at 7:30 pm- organized by the CSU and the Concordia Community Solidarity Co-op Bookstore. There will be a meet & greet with Shawn Katz, refreshments, and introduction by Anne Lagacé Dowson. 

Also today on the Commonwealth Conundrum around 4:30pm - Rebecca and Danny will chat with Secret Sun about remixes from their debut album with the likes of FOXTROTT, J.u.D., The Posterz, CRi, Technical Kidman, Toast Dawg and Dr. MaD! Secret Sun will be doing their first official concert with Most People this Saturday, April 18th at Bar Le Ritz PDB.




The Cat Empire + Current Swell @ Metropolis

Presented by Evenko and Greenland Productions

Carmen from Plebeian Pleasures (Mondays 11 AM) reviews the frenzied night.

The Cat Empire killed two birds with one stone on April 11th, as they offered a second sold-out and stunning performance at Metropolis. Actually, forget "performance". It was a party.

A great deal of that fun was due to Current Swell, the perfect opener for an enthusiastic and packed audience. Coming all the way from Canada's West Coast, the band's indefinable sound contains nuances of folk, blues, reggae, psychedelic, pop, ska, heavy-country, and funk.

For 45 minutes, they jumped and laughed. Scott Stanton and Dave Lang had serious harmonica and guitar skills, but Ghosty Boy was the one leading the crowd with his crazy bass beats. Amongst the rock ambiance, they also included beautiful harmonies.

Towards the end of their set they said, "If you stamp your feet, Cat Empire will hear you. If you stamp them hard enough, you'll all end up under the stage". In a heartbeat, Metropolis was shaking and that's about the time everyone realized they were in for a treat.

People started interacting with each other and reminiscing about their previous Cat Empire experiences in between sets. It felt like a close get-together, and once "Brighter than Gold" started suddenly, everyone went insane. Arms and feet were everywhere, and it was awesome. There was an instant clash between the calm balconies and the hysterical front stage.

The Cat Empire's unique sound stands out from typical jazz and ska due to their unusual electric sound. Their set was diverse, offering their greatest hits and a soft focus on their last album, Steal the Light. More importantly, the fun was contagious. In "How to Explain", they proved their lyrics right, music is the language of the soul. Without holding back, people danced, cheered, and crowd surfed in a compact frenzied pit. It felt like a 35-degree Dominican Republic. The pit got real during "In My Pocket", and trumpeter Harry James Angus improvised "nananananas" on an increasingly fast drum, challenging the crowd to push themselves even more.

As if the night couldn't get more eccentric, keyboardist Ollie McGill played the "Super Mario" theme song, followed by a solo to introduce "The Wine Song". On this anthem, vocalist Felix Riebl invited the audience to put their arms around each other and unite in a gigantic circle pit. After seeing the crowd hug, he praised Montreal and said, "I love the way people interact with each other here". Their generous encore started with "Steal the Light" and finished with an endless version of "The Chariot". As the humble geniuses that they are, the octet did not want to leave the stage, and that ended the night perfectly. 

Many fans mentioned that they could not get enough and attended both parties. If you missed out, wear two shoes for dancing and pay a tribute to Bobby Marley's legacy in the comfort of your home with this video, or follow their American tour and catch the next Amigo Express!

Although the non-existence of cats almost ruined the night, the show gets a solid 12/10. 

Friday April 17th, 2015

Hosted by Catlin Spencer

Stories by Catlin Spencer Patricia Petit Liang

Produced by Patricia Petit Liang

News For Friday April 17th, 2015

by Patricia Petit Liang


Christopher Husbands has been sentenced to 30 years in prison with no parole after fatally shooting two people at Toronto’s Eaton Centre in 2012.

According to the Globe and Mail, Husbands has been convicted of two counts of second-degree murder, five counts of aggravated assault, one of count of criminal negligence and one count of carelessly discharging a firearm.

This is the first time in Canadian history that such a severe sentence has been given for second-degree murder.


by Catlin Spencer


Although it has yet to finalized, Cirque du Soleil is preparing to announce its sale of the famous Quebec circus troupe. 

According to CTV News, the announcement is supposed to come Monday, despite co-founder Guy Laliberte telling workers Wednesday that the sale agreement has not yet been concluded. 

Sources say the deal includes U.S. private equity firm TPG Capital, Quebec pension fund manager the Caisse de depot and China's Fosun Capital investment fund. 

The Cirques headquarters are apparently to remain in Montreal, while opening a support office in Shanghai.

Reports say the deal is worth just under 2 billion dollars, a price that is less than what Laliberte was originally seeking.

April 16th, 2015

Hosted by: Sam Obrand

Stories by: Tom Matukala, Julian Mckenzie, Emeline Vidal

Produced by: Emeline Vidal

Double Champs tonight! Punchline 13 in studio live at 7pm- talking Pouzza Fest!

Tonight we will have a special double edition of Champions of the Local Scene, with Montreal band Punchline 13 live in studio at 7pm. Punchline 13 wil be playing Pouzza Fest May 17 & 18th at TRH Bar- 3699 St Laurent, more information here! Tune in tonight at 7pm for this special episode hosted by Abby of Psychic City.

Champions of the Local Scene @ 6pm- Interview w/ Ryan Playground & Taking Hold Program

Today on a special edition of Champions of the Local Scene, we have Montreal DJ/ producer Ryan Playground in studio with participants from the Taking Hold program. Taking Hold is a program to empower and educate girls aged 13 to 15 through music production. The program is run in seven high schools across Montreal through the Black Community Resource Centre. Recently, participants had a chance to write a song with Montreal singer/songwriter Sarah MK, a frequent performer at the Montreal International Jazz Festival, with production by Ryan Playground. The girls recorderd the song at Planet Studios which will make its radio debut tonight at 6pm! We will chat with the girls about their experiences and hear what else they are excited about musically. Ryan Playground will do a DJ set and we will talk with program facilitator Tessa Star. Tune in tonight at 6pm!