The release of Blood Moon Wolf Head by Jim Demos, under his Hellenica moniker, coincided with el Dia de los Muertos - the day of the dead. According to Demos, the album is meant as an offering to the deceased. A preliminary reading about this holiday finds that it's meant to allow friends and family to congregate together, to remember those who have died, and to offer the deceased support through their spiritual journey back to earth. What kind of spiritual support to the dead is this album, an album described by Demos as the celebration of improvisation and composition? Like the mixing of these two musical worlds, perhaps Demos is offering the view that there is interconnectedness between the earthly and spiritual worlds; a oneness with a community that doesn't end at death.
"Burning of the Effigies" starts the whole thing off with a spaghetti-western vibe. The looped plucking of several grungy guitar notes is accompanied by slide guitar and chanting vocals. This track seems to act as a kind of portal to the world in which Demos wants to explore. The whole effect is both eerie and hypnotic. The isolated sounds of "Infraction" follow. The track offers a nice juxtaposed soundscape highlighting the acoustic guitar in this sparse world, culminating with frantic guitar work and the sounds of fireworks. Clearly, the celebration continues.
"Photogenesis" builds slowly with acoustic guitar loops, and other wonderfully subtle sounds littering about, before blasts of synth help to awaken you from the trance the album has put you under. The closing track, "Frozen Landscapes", is an optimistic ending to this journey for the dead.
The album nicely mixes a variety of elements and flavours. Demos admits as much, stating that the album intermingles field recordings, synths and loops. The sonic atmosphere creates a dreamlike feel throughout the album. Listening to Blood Moon Wolf Head requires patience. The world is slow and sparse and has more in common with sound art than pop music, but it is a journey worth taking.
--Fredy M. Iuni hosts Hiway 1, Mondays at 7:00 pm on CJLO.
Hosted by Catlin Spencer
Stories by Catlin Spencer & Patricia Petit Liang
Produced by Patricia Petit Liang
Hosted by: Sam Obrand
Stories by:Tom Matukala, Emeline Vidal, Julian McKenzie
Produced by: Emeline Vidal
After breaking down on the highway coming back from Rochester, NY, only to be brought to the nearest Tim Horton's by the CAA tow-truck driver - with his family following in the cruiser of a Good Samaritan Sûreté du Québec officer - Prince Palu was convinced it was fate's way of having some fun in granting him a brand new Toyota Camry. It wasn't. $430 and a new alternator later, Palu is back home and ready to tell you about some great live music options this weekend.
Thursday, March 5, 2015
It is once again the first Thursday of the month, so that means a new artist-in-residency for the on-going Divan Orange Camp 6 à 8 series at Le Divan Orange (4234 St-Laurent). This month features One-Man-Band Jan Dutler (Harmonica, Ukulele, Trombone, Suitcase-Drum, BeatBox, and Vocals) from Switzerland who has spent the past three years travelling the world, soaking up different styles of music, and blending them into a unique mix of multilingual (German, English, Spanish, Russian and Italian) blues-jazz-folk hybrid. With $5 pints and free admission, once again this is a great way to start your weekend a little early.
Up the road at La Sala Rossa (4848 St-Laurent), Blue Skies Turn Black present a night of Alt.country bliss with a couple of Toronto-based trios, Elliot Brood, and The Wilderness of Manitoba. $18 at the door, show starts at 9:00.
Across the street at Casa del Popolo (4873 St-Laurent), Under the Snow Festival kicks off its 11th edition with a double bill featuring the post-rock psychedelic of Carnior and the slowcore indie rock of Dye By The Sword.
Friday, March 6, 2015
Touring behind their brand new album, Shadow of the Sun, San Francisco's Moon Duo return to Montreal at Bar Le "Ritz" P.D.B. (179 Jean Talon W.) for a night of swirling psychedelia and musical majik. They will be joined by a couple of Montreal bands, the indie-pop danceable goodness of Moss Lime and the shoegaze ambient-soul of Pang Attack.
Friday also marks the return of one of Montreal's prodigal sons, Mark Sultan, also known as the one-man-band extraordinaire BBQ. In a reunion of sorts, joining BBQ in this triple bill at Divan Orange will be two of his former Les Sexareenos band mates, Roy Vucino and Annie Laurin, and their respective new bands, Birds of Paradise and Lunar Exile. With this much local garage-rock royalty, you'd be wise to grab a ticket before heading over to find it sold out.
Celebrating its 15th year, Art Matters is throwing their opening night party up at Theatre Plaza (6505 St-Hubert) with the avant-garde jazz of Saxsyndrum, garage-punk noise of the Famines, space-age hip hop of Rollie, and the experimental pop of Pascale Project (formerly known as Mathematique). First 100 people get in for $5, $10 for everyone after that. Check out the rest of the Art Matters events here.
Saturday, March 7, 2015
One of Canada's greatest live bands, The Golden Dogs, will be returning to Montreal on Saturday with their fuzzy power pop rock 'n' roll and shaking it all over the stage at Divan Orange. With an all-new line up, they released their latest album, 3 ½, last month and have been getting raves reviews. If that wasn't enough for ya, the addition of Nancy Pants, Montreal's pre-eminent purveyors of fun, puts this show into the realm that would make the late, great Billy Red Lyons say, "Dontchadaremissit!"
--Prince Palu hosts The Go-Go Radio Magic Show, every Friday night from 6 to 8pm. Tune in. Turn on. Freak OUT! Only on CJLO.
Today on Champions of the Local Scene- Abby from Psychic City will be talking all things Art Matters with team members Laurent Viau-Lapointe and Edwin Isford. The 15th edition of Art Matters festival is happening March 7-21 across various spaces in Montreal. Art Matters is a fine arts festival focused on artistic expression, exploration and collaboration that was created by the students of Concordia University in 2000 for the community at large. Conversation topics will include what's special about this year's festival, event previews, and some memorable Art Matters moments! Curators John Shukin and Julie Tremblay will join us in studio to talk about their festival show There's Something About Spaces happening at Espace Circle Carré (March 8-20, with the vernissage taking place March 20, 6-9 pm). Diverse exhibitions, special events and performances will take place across Montreal, including the Art Matters Opening party featuring Saxsyndrum, Rollie, The Famines, The Pascale Project, and The League of Lady Wrestlers of Montreal happening this Friday, March 6 at Theatre Plaza St Hubert- for more information on all events visit the Art Matters website! Tune in!
Hosted By Saturn De Los Angeles
Stories by Catlin Spencer and Tom Matukala
Produced by Tom Matukala
We Are Not Alone is a one man show written and performed by four-time Dora award winner Damien Atkins . This play was directed by Chris Abraham (Crow's Theatre) and Christian Barry (2b Theatre) and is currently being presented at the Segal Theatre until March 15th, 2015.
We Are Not Alone is a play based off of Atkins’ investigation of UFOs and is an autobiographical account of the research he conducted on the subject of extraterrestrials. Atkins begins his solo performance by telling the audience how people were unable to believe that he was going to write a play about aliens, then provides a brief history of UFO sightings in the United States and later proceeds to tell the audience about the process he went through in order to make this theatre piece.
As a member of the audience, I found myself anticipating Atkins to finish his explanation of the play and then finally introduce it to us. Halfway through his performance, I came to the conclusion that there would be no actual play and was overcome with frustration. Atkins mentions several times during the show that what he was finding during his research had the potential to make his “play” more interesting, teasing the audience with the idea of a work of fiction that would never come to fruition.
Atkins’ 85 minute anecdote attracts audiences who are interested in the possibility of life on other planets, but is more of a coming of age story than an interstellar adventure. Aliens are simply a way for Atkins to convey how he has forgotten how to live in the moment, promoting his message of embracing the universe for what it is rather than over analyzing it. Atkins begins the show attempting to convince the audience that UFOs indeed exist and that people who do not believe in aliens are closed-minded. However, many of the audience members came to see We Are Not Alone because they were already interested in the possibility of extraterrestrial visitors. Atkins’ efforts seemed to be in vain as he was preaching to the already converted.
Although I found myself wary of the subject of Atkins’ show, We Are Not Alone is a champion of set design, sound engineering and acting. The minimalist set design allowed Atkins to create an entire universe in the small, intimate auditorium provided by the Segal Centre. Decorated with 6 plastic chairs, a silver bar stool, a giant mirror and a microphone, Atkins transformed the room into his very own, War of the Worlds inspired studio. Atkins took the audience all over the United States at different points in history using the power of his vivid imagination and wonderful audio accompaniment. The sound effects were perfectly synchronized with every aspect of Atkins’ performance and added layers of magic to his already delightful acting. If anything, Atkins’ acting ability and the audio were so powerful together that the set for We Are Not Alone was more of an afterthought. If We Are Not Alone was a radio programme, it would be just as sophisticated and entertaining.
Atkins delivers an amazing performance in We Are Not Alone with his portrayal several distinct and fully-realized characters. When changing from character to character, Atkins alters his expressions, the tone of his voice, his posture and even his center of gravity in a brilliant attempt to portray the wacky people he met while conducting research for the play. Atkins never has to wear a costume in order to create a believable character for the audience to appreciate. His subtle changes in mannerisms convey volumes of theatrical expertise which have undoubtedly made him the success that he is today.
What We Are Not Alone lacks in substance is made up for by an amazing performance by Damien Atkins and is a masterpiece in sound engineering. I think that if Atkins had been clear about the direction of his show earlier on in the piece, the experience would have been much more enjoyable. We Are Not Alone is an extremely creative and ambitious experience with an underlying message that holds true for many. We Are Not Alone may not have been “out of this world” for me, but it was a stellar effort on the parts of Damien Atkins, Chris Abraham and Christian Barry.
We Are Not Alone runs at the Segal Centre until March 15th, 2015 and can be bought online here.
Hosted by: Celeste Lee
Stories by: Emeline Vidal, Patrcia Petit-Liang, Caitlin Spencer
Produced by: Emeline Vidal
Prince Palu & Oncle Ian from The Go-Go Radio Magic Show invite you to tune in this Friday, March 6th to hear a live phone interview with Austin, Texas musician Matthew Melton. As a core member of bands that include Snake Flower 2, Bare Wires, and Warm Soda—plus two wicked solo albums released on Southpaw Records—Matthew has created an essential catalogue of music for folks who enjoy infectious pop hooks and fist-pumping rock 'n' roll. The show starts at 6 PM sharp, so turn that dial to 1690AM in Montreal or listen online via www.cjlo.com.