Sled Island ’09: featuring Biz Markie,Liars, These Arms Are Snakes, Whitey Houston

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Sled Island 2009’s programming features a line-up of 250+ bands spanning the globe, proudly including over 120 from Alberta, 100+ from the rest of Canada and 32 international bands.

Acts added to the Sled Island 2009 lineup include: Hip-hop icon Biz Markie, New York weirdo-pop act Japanther, Seattle-based post-hardcore band These Arms Are Snakes (with ex-members of Botch), Calgary legends the Ramblin’ Ambassadors, rap visionary Gift of Gab (of Blackalicous-fame), Canadian indie-darlings Woodpigeon, Chad VanGaalen‘s new electro-project Black Mold, Montreal garage rocker Mark Sultan, Canadian punk legends SNFU, Edmonton favourites Whitey Houston, and many, many more.

More info here. Wish I were going…. maybe they’ll fly me out there?

Doves fly high at Kool Haus

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Live music is such an interesting thing for me. I never really end up in the middle. I either completely react to the music or nothing happens at all. I’ve noticed its getting less frequent that I am the former, luckily for the Doves show last night at Kool Haus, I reacted. Goosebumps, nostalgia and hearing things with different ears on.

The set was filled with songs off the bands’ four album history, mainly showcasing the new album (Kingdom Of Rust), which has been a pretty popular go-to album around here. The lead-off track (Jetstream) started the show, as well, we here heard ‘Winter Hill’ and the title track ‘Kingdom of Rust’. And from the time I’ve spent with the record, I had no idea how much the songs ‘The Outsiders’ and ‘House of Mirrors’ would blow my mind live. Outsiders has this great lick (think Elbow‘s ‘Grounds For Divorce’) through the middle that killed live. Mirrors ended up in the 4 song encore. Real standouts.

Digging into the past, Doves also performed a healthy amount from The Last Broadcast. ‘Words’ and ‘Caught by The River’ were sing-along crowd favorites. They finished the encore with ‘There Goes The Fear’ with the video (below) projecting on to the band and backdrop. I felt nostalgic while listening to ‘Pounding’, which I feel is their best song. Years ago, while unemployed and a couple days into owning a digital camera, I set out to make a video for the song. Check out the clip. No future Spike Jonze here.

If there was anything the band didn’t nail it might have been ‘Snowden’, off Some Cities. Seemed as if the band couldn’t find the right tempo to play the song in. Not a big deal compared to what the band did right. Quite an experience.

Catchy as hella, ella, ella, eh: Dan Black with ‘Symphonies’

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Dan Black – Symphonies

Couldn’t get this song out of my head all weekend. Had to keep opening youtube to play the video, just to hear it and I guess to satisfy my minds primal urge for a hook very close to Rihanna’s ‘Umbrella’. But, Dan‘s chorus surprises while enlightening me with the direction it takes. Check out his hommage to great films in the video above for ‘Symphonies’. Look for this single out later this month, album in July.

Here’s the Passion Pit remix to tie you over. Symphonies (Passion Pit remix).

Currently Listening To: Free Energy

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Here’s Dream City by Free Energy (from Fader). DFA puts out their debut in the fall, I guess moving more towards bangers from the 70’s or sounds you might hear on the Dazed and Confused soundtrack.

Thats it for me this week, I’ve got no words left. Hopefully soon I’ll have more words to string this great music together. Until then, let this songs’ ‘NaNaNa-ing’ near the end take you into the weekend as I shut down my laptop and run to a patio.