Category: Reviews

Waxahatchee – “Ivy Tripp”

Waxahatchee – “Ivy Tripp”

On Katie Crutchfield’s third LP as Waxahatchee – Ivy Tripp – she further perfects her craft for writing powerful pop songs in nice neat packages. The average song on the wonderful new LP clocks in around right under 3 minutes.  Cruthfield does not waste a note and maximizes each song to its fullest. Her music has also evolved from the […]

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The Mountain Goats – ‘Beat The Champ’

The Mountain Goats – ‘Beat The Champ’

The Mountain Goats’ John Darnielle truly is a fascinating songwriter. He can take many different themes and turn them into relatable songs for anyone to enjoy. On The Mountain Goats’ latest record, Beat The Champ they grapple with professional wrestling. The professional wrestling on Beat The Champ isn’t like the star-studded WrestleMania event of last weekend featuring guys like Brock […]

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THE LONG TRAIN HOME

THE LONG TRAIN HOME

  THE EXCURSIONIST directed by Audrius Juzenas Sunday, February 8, 4pm, River Building Theatre, Carleton Umiversity Bright Nights – The 5th Baltic – Nordic Film Festival   Disguised as a post war Lithuanian epic concerning the harrowing journey of an exiled orphan, The Excursionist is really about a sweet ten year old caught up in a series of unfortunate events, […]

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Ryan Bingham, “Fear and Saturday Night”

Ryan Bingham, “Fear and Saturday Night”

LA-based, singer-songwriter Ryan Bingham might be one of the least recognizable Golden Globe, Critic’s Choice Award, Academy Award and Grammy award winners ever. Bingham stacked up his long list of awards for co-pinning “The Weary Kind”, the theme song to the film Crazy Heart.  After such accolades, it would seem that Bingham would find himself on musical easy street with monster record deals. […]

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East End Radicals, “Zero Hour”

East End Radicals, “Zero Hour”

It’s been a quiet last couple of years for classic punk rock, but thankfully Montreal’s East End Radicals are back with their hard-hitting new album Zero Hour. The follow-up to 2012’s strong Carry On sees the band testing new waters and experimenting with different sounds, but they never drift too far from their signature recipe: 100% pure clenched-fist punk rock. […]

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WENG WENG AND AWAY!

WENG WENG AND AWAY!

  The Search For Weng Weng  Director: Andrew Leavold The Mayfair Theatre, December 19   For those unable to attend the Philippines’ 1981 Film Festival, the film craze that swept that party (and later Cannes) was all about a three foot James Bond. Actually 2’ 9” – according to Guinness Book of World Records. The name is Weng, Weng Weng, […]

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FACE OFF

FACE OFF

Vis-à-vis Director: Nevio Marasović   Thursday, November 27, 9pm, 395 Wellington, National Archives 29th European Union Film Festival   A film about a filmmaker’s life, which revolves around his making of a film about his life. Whew. Vis-à-vis is not as complicated as all that, in fact it is quite simple, straightforward, easily digestible, and full of just enough humorous […]

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LAST TANGO IN EVROS

LAST TANGO IN EVROS

    To tango ton Hristougennon (Christmas Tango) Director: Nikos Koutelidakis Tuesday, November 25, 7pm, 395 Wellington, National Archives 29th European Union Film Festival   Usually the Greeks go over the top: lots of music, lots of food, lots of yelling; and with love, tango and military involved in the plot, it’s a little hard to gear down for the […]

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STRONG, JACK STRONG

STRONG, JACK STRONG

  Jack Strong (Poland) Directed by Władysław Pasikowski Saturday, November 22, 7pm, 395 Wellington, National Archives 29th European Union Film Festival Despite the flashy poster, dashing leading man, and promise of super secret espionage thrills, this is not a James Bond movie. You have been warned. Instead, Jack Strong is a methodical retelling of a complicated cat and mouse tale […]

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THE BIG FINNISH

THE BIG FINNISH

Tie pohjoiseen (Road North) Directed by Mika Kaurismäki (Finland) Friday, November 21, 7pm, 395 Wellington, National Archives 29th European Union Film Festival After lighting up, Leo is curtly asked if he could smoke outside. He responds innocently with, “outside, inside, wherever”. That kind of smarmy yet light-hearted attitude is the key behind Mika Kaurismaki’s latest road trip adventure. Road North […]

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BLAST OFF

BLAST OFF

  Zweisitzrakete (Two-Seater Rocket) (Austria) directed by Hans Hofer Thursday, November 20, 7pm, 395 Wellington, National Archives 29th European Union Film Festival Put your Austrian preconceptions aside and enjoy a fluffy romcom that is usually the domain of hot-blooded western Europe. This is the story of lifelong friends Manuel and Mia, who as adults, find themselves experiencing some new growing […]

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THE REAL HEAL

THE REAL HEAL

  Mon âme par toi guérie (One of a Kind) (France) directed by François Dupeyron Wednesday, November 19, 7pm, 395 Wellington, National Archives 29th European Union Film Festival Water, beer and Champagne: liquids of sustenance are ingested with an intensity that life fuels deserve. It’s such small nuances that make François Dupeyron’s engrossing One of a Kind a viewing gem not […]

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Sofar Sounds Review: Austin, TX ACL Edition-10.11.14

Sofar Sounds Review: Austin, TX ACL Edition-10.11.14

If you are not familiar, Sofar Sounds is a great way to discover new music with very good up and coming or not quite “discovered” bands. If you peruse the Sofar Sounds global you tube channel you will find the likes of Bastille, Sylvan Esso, Hozier and many other great artists that agreed to play in a secret location, most likely […]

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Review: Kinnie Starr’s “Far from Away”

Review: Kinnie Starr’s “Far from Away”

I fell in love with Kinnie Starr at a gig in Montreal when she was touring for then-new album Sun Again (2003 or so). It’s rare that I get so into a show that I start moving like a maniac (and I cannot dance, folks, I really can’t) and lose myself in it. I bought the record and played the […]

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Album Review: WiL’s Powerful El Paseo

Album Review: WiL’s Powerful El Paseo

I was so happy to have the opportunity to hear WiL’s new record a few weeks before its release. This guy has a large and dedicated fan base, and writes some of the greatest acoustic folk/country tunes in Canada. Starting off in the mid-90s as a cover-song singing pub act, WiL found his voice and a deal with EMI Records. […]

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Album Review: Elizabeth Shepherd mixes Jazz, Downtempo and more on “The Signal”

Album Review: Elizabeth Shepherd mixes Jazz, Downtempo and more on “The Signal”

Most artist bios have glorious descriptions of the act, and you have to take them with a large salt grain. Not that they’re incorrect, but sometimes you have to wonder if you can believe the hype. I got this CD (yay, a CD!) in the mail from Linus Entertainment and just listened to it before reading the accompanying bio. I […]

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Album Review: Brenda Earle Stokes “Right About Now”

Album Review: Brenda Earle Stokes “Right About Now”

I’ve been a fan of Brenda Earle Stokes since her days as Brenda Earle (ie, back in high school in Sarnia, Ontario). She was (and remains) a few years younger than me, but we ran in similar circles during our teen years. She was recognized as a talented kid at the time, one you would be wise to watch and […]

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Album Review: Karyn Ellis Created a Gem of a Record

Album Review: Karyn Ellis Created a Gem of a Record

I was introduced to the music of Karyn Ellis by another musician associate, Orit Shimoni. I’m a big fan of Orit, so I knew I should give Karyn a listen. Frankly, I find musicians tend to have the best taste in music, and Orit doesn’t let me down. Toronto-based Karyn Ellis is a talented songwriter, singer, and performer who has […]

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Twelve Years of Hair

Twelve Years of Hair

BOYHOOD Director: Richard Linklater The Mayfair Theatre, August 15 – 28 When prodded for opinion upon exiting the theatre I shrugged and coyly blurted, “Meh”. That was just a bit of fun, as everyone surely knows, Boyhood has been showered with universal acclaim and declared a landmark cinematic masterpiece. Shot over a twelve-year span with the same cast, Boyhood lets […]

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Album Review: Ace Frehley’s still a Space Invader

Album Review: Ace Frehley’s still a Space Invader

Ok, Ace fans. In the 21 Century, Ace has reclaimed his title of geetar god, and had proven himself (finally!) as a album recording artist. 2009’s Anomaly was a fine return to form for a guy who shredded on all of Kiss’ earliest records, and found himself solo success back in 1978. The 80s and 90s were a tough haul […]

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