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Issue #123 – April 11 to April 16

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high impact wrestling On life in the ring life after death Q+A with Creepshow draft day + the great beauty Films reviewed­ Photo: courtesy of Ryan Walter Wagner


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On the cover:

ladyhawk

No can do? 10 / feature

Photo: courtesy of Ryan Walter Wagner

culture

NEWs + Opinion

entertainment

Q + A with creepshow

Live Music listings

On new beginnings. 8 / Q + A

Local music listings for April 11 through April 19. 14 / listings

Jason Holowach talks bouldering.

on the edge of disaster Amalie Atkins’ first

We visit Queen City Hub.

3 / Local

major solo show. 9 / Arts

15 / Nightlife

western textures Ken Gillespie’s landscape paintings.

draft day + the great beauty

9 / Arts

We review the latest movies. 16 / Film

up the wall

Nightlife Photos

wrestling life Mike Roberts on life in the ring. 4 / Local

last call

where the batter is better

Here’s our thoughts on extending drinking hours. 6 / Editorial

We visit London Jack’s. 12 / Food + Drink

on the bus Weekly original comic illustrations by Elaine M. Will. 18 / comics

comments

Music

Game + Horoscopes

Here’s your say about selling alcohol in corner stores. 7 / comments

Shannon Lyon, Florida Georgia Line + Luke Bryan. 13 / music

Canadian criss-cross puzzle, weekly horoscopes and Sudoku. 19 / timeout

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But the surprise is short-lived. He still has the rest of the problem to solve. And solve it he does, which leaves him tied for first place. There are only three more courses to climb, three more problems to solve.

Photo: courtesy of facebook

up the wall Competitive climber Jason Holowach, and the 2014 Canadian Boulder Championship by ADAM HAWBOLDT

J

ason Holowach stands at the base of the wall, looking up and visualizing his route. It’s the second day of the 2014 Canadian Boulder Championship at Coyote Rock Gym in Ottawa. The previous day he’d gone through qualifiers and finished second. But his body is tired and hurting — earlier today he had another difficult climb during the semi-finals. But Holowach is ready. Not long before he stepped up to the wall — or boulder problem #1, as he calls it — Holowach and

the five other finalists took two minutes and analyzed the climb together. They examined it, talked about it, tried to figure out the best way to make the climb. To solve the problem. “Sometimes it can help you, sometimes it can hinder you,” says Holowach, about the time spent talking things over with the other finalists. “Obviously you know what’s best, what your body is used to. But sometimes you have more experienced climbers with you, and if they say something and you believe it, maybe that can help you out.”

For this particular problem, a really dynamic boulder-type problem, the group had talked about jumping and grabbing onto a hold near the start, controlling their swing, then going from there. Standing at the base of the wall, that’s what Holowach decides he is going to try to do. When he gets to that point of the course, he is going to jump off a foot hold, grab the next hand hold, be controlled, and then carry on. Sometimes things don’t always work out according to plan. “After I jumped, mid-air, I felt the hold. It felt really bad,” says Holowach. “My right hand landed on it, and started slipping. My left hand landed on it, started slipping too.” Holowach’s body starts swinging all over the place, and he begins sliding. With time quickly running out to decide what to do, he spots another hold within reach, and in that split second decides to go for it. It’s either that or fall. “My momentum was going,” he says, “so I just kind of threw my hand up to the next hold. It was grippy enough and it stayed. To be honest, it kind of surprised me.”

Talk to any serious, competitive climber and they’ll tell you climbing is addictive. There’s no one reason as to why this is, but the best theory runs as follows: humans are problem solving creatures. We like figuring things out. So when we solve problems, our brains give us rewards. Brief little hits of dopamine that makes us feel better. And since climbing is a serious problemsolving sport, the better you get, the more hits of dopamine that come. Holowach knows this. The first time he climbed a wall he was 12 years old. It was at a birthday party at Vic’s Vertical Walls. He instantly fell in love with the sport. Fast forward 13 years — past the national title he won in 2005, past the regional titles he’s won, past him blossoming into one of the most consistent performers on the scene — and these days Holowach is running the Grip It Indoor Rock Climbing gym in Saskatoon. That’s where he teaches people to climb. Where, after hours, he trains without distraction. And his training regime may not be what you think. “A lot of my training has moved away from climbing, from getting lots of miles,” says Holowach. “I know my body understands the movements it has to make. So now I mostly focus on strength and conditioning. I do a lot of hangboard, or what some call fingerboard. That’s where you’re just hanging from your fingertips, either with weights or without, for durations that will help you build your strength and endurance in your arms and hands.” He also does things like box jumps and other plyometric exercises that work the muscles in his legs. He does all this to stay competitive. And it’s that competitive streak that has led him to the 2014 Canadian Boulder Championship. After finishing the first boulder problem, Holowach and the other five finalists move onto problem #2. They examine it, talk about it. Then it’s go time.

But things don’t go well for Holowach here. As a group, the finalists figure out the best sequence to use to attack the wall. He takes the group’s advice, but it doesn’t work.

After blowing the first few attempts, Holowach goes with his gut and tries a different sequence. It doesn’t work, either. And while he failed to complete his second climb, things aren’t looking too bad for Holowach. Only one competitor, B.C.’s Sean McColl, completed the first two climbs. So heading into problem #3 — a highly technical, low-angled route — Holowach sits tied for second. He nails the climb on his first try. McColl doesn’t finish. Heading into the fourth and final climb of the competition, Holowach knows he’s tied with McColl for top spot. But this last climb is going to be tricky. “It was a very, very difficult route,” says Holowach. “There was a bonus hold in the middle of the route. But even to get there there were six or seven really powerful, really dynamic moves you had to do on a roof that was pretty much flat, horizontal to the floor.” Holowach tries and tries, but no matter how hard he climbs he can’t solve the wall, can’t make it to that bonus hold. McColl is the only one who makes it, earning him the title. Holowach finishes second. But finishing second isn’t necessarily a bad thing. See, since McColl is in the IFSC (International Federation of Sport Climbing) he doesn’t compete in Canadian events all that often, and he just came to Ottawa for the Boulder Championship. As a result, Holowach’s second place finish, along with a strong season, lands him the overall Canadian championship. “It was great,” says Holowach, about the competition. “It went really well. There were some difficult climbs, but yeah, it was just great.”

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Mike Roberts and High Impact Wrestling by ADAM HAWBOLDT

W

hen Mike Roberts was 19 years old, he met a guy by the name of Crusher Carlsen. He didn’t know who Carlsen was at that point, all he knew was that Carlsen was large, a great big guy who stood about 6’3” and weighed around 400 pounds. The two got to chatting, and eventually Carlsen asked Roberts if he’d ever thought about getting into pro-wrestling. Sure, Roberts had thought about it. As a child he’d grown up watching Stampede Wrestling on television with his grandpa. He had all the WWF toys and magazines. He had watched the WWF religiously, and had seen all the WrestleManias. So yeah, he’d thought about it. But not seriously. Before their conversation ended, Carlsen gave Roberts a card with a number on it, and told Roberts to give him a call if he ever wanted to wrestle. Roberts didn’t call. But then, as luck would have it, not long after his encounter with Carlsen Roberts ran into another professional wrestler. Her name was Cathie Cougar. “She was one of the few female wrestlers in Saskatchewan,” says Roberts. “We got talking about wrestling and she dragged me down to the High Impact Wrestling training academy [in Regina.]”

It was there that Robert’s lifelong love of wrestling shifted from something that was a passing fancy to something that was tangible and serious and painful. “When I first went to the training facility they had me practicing bumps, taking the falls,” says Robert. “After the first day I thought I’d be okay. As the days went on, though, my body started to turn on me and I was getting big knots in my back. I was bruising. It felt like my lung was collapsing.” For the next two or three weeks Roberts sat at home, wondering if wrestling was for him. Would it be worth all the pain and bumps and bruises? He was on the fence when along came Cathie Cougar again. They had a talk and she tried to coax him into giving professional wrestling another shot. And again Roberts followed Cathie Cougar back to the training facility. This time he stuck with it. He fought through the pain and his body began getting used to the pounding. Eventually he’d earned his stripes and was ready to compete. “When I first started out, they didn’t let me pick my name,” remembers Roberts. “They gave me the moniker Manny Montoya. I was Latino, and for some reason I was some sort of militant. Hair dyed black, wearing all camo.”

That was 13 years ago. These days Roberts is still wrestling, but he’s taken on more responsibility within HIW. And his name is no longer Manny Montoya.

In 1999 a wrestler by the name of Charley Pichette opened a pro-wrestling training school in Regina. A training school that would periodically host live events under the banner of World High Impact Pro-Wrestling — or WHIP Wrestling for short. Slowly the fan base grew, the organization began hosting monthly events, and in the mid-2000s changed its name to High Impact Wrestling Canada. HIW had a run of success in the late-2000s. It signed a television deal with Access 7 in 2010 and expanded its shows to other places in the province. Things were going well, but then something happened. “A few years ago, the owner [Charley Pichette] started losing interest,” says Roberts. “He’d gotten sour to a lot of the politics that goes on around a business like this and he let the company slide a bit. I’d been around wrestling for 13 years at that point, and I was very loyal to the HIW product. So when I saw the company starting to take a nose dive, I decided to make an offer and buy it.”

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At the end of 2012, Roberts’ offer was accepted and he became the owner/promoter of HIW Canada. “When I took over, it was an underground, indie organization,” says Roberts. “What I’ve been trying to do is bring it back to the foreground.” One of Roberts’ first orders of business was to expand the company to include several new Saskatchewan centres. He also created HIW Wildside — an HIW affiliate organization with younger, up-and-coming wrestlers. But as he’d soon learn, being a wrestler and running a company involved a lot of work. “Just running HIW is a full-time job,” he says. “Booking venues, getting promo material together, all that kind of stuff. There’s a very involved busi-

You also have to be open to letting characters evolve, to transforming a heel into a hero, to embrace name and identity changes over the years. Kind of like the one Robert’s persona Manny Montoya went through.

Changing names and taking on a new persona is nothing new in pro wrestling. Very few people remember that Triple-H was once a blue-blood from Connecticut called Hunter Hearst Helmsley. Or that Kane was once a deranged doctor named Isaac Yankem. Or that Calgary’s Edge used to be known as Sexton Hardcastle. Same goes for Mike Roberts. Very few people these days remember him as Manny Montoya.

You live with so many bruises and aches and pains it becomes natural. Mike Roberts

ness side to it. A lot of people don’t see that.” There are also story lines to be created for his stable of 30-plus wrestlers. “I try to have story lines written months and months in advance. Things change,” says Roberts, “so you have to really be creative and be interesting or people won’t be interested in your stories.”

He’s better known as three-time HIW heavyweight champ Big Daddy Kash. Or as his current persona — King Kash. “After paying my dues for a couple of years, I had an idea for a character named Big Daddy Kash,” says Roberts. “The idea was he was a Las Vegas player. It started out there, then it just kind of evolved. I started growing a beard and started bleaching my hair

blond. The crowd took to it because I just kind of looked like this rough party guy. Then Big Daddy Kash became that — long-bearded, long-haired, biker, partier, fighter.” That character continued to evolve, and after the last time Roberts won the heavyweight title he changed his name to King Kash, a character that began as a heel but these days is a hero. And while his HIW persona continues to evolve, Roberts knows he doesn’t have too many years left in the ring. “You live with so many bruises and aches and pains it becomes natural,” says Roberts. “You don’t even notice that part of it anymore. The more severe ones, obviously, they pile up over time. My knees will probably go out on me in a couple of years. My back is pretty rough. I have bone chips in my elbows that feel like beanbags. Unless it’s real severe, you just live with it.” So for now that’s what Roberts does. He lives with it. He lives with the pain. He lives with the responsibility of restoring HIW to its former glory … and then some. But most of all, he lives a life that his childhood self — the one who used to sit with his grandpa and watch Stampede Wrestling — would find impressive. Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

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last call for alcohol Bars should be able to serve alcohol as late as they want

R

emember back in February when Canada played Sweden in the men’s Olympic hockey final? Remember how some Saskatchewan bars received special permission to open at 5:30am to serve booze to the Canadian hockey faithful? Of course you remember all that. It was a great and shining day.

Which got us thinking — why can’t bars stay open later than 2am more often than once in a blue moon? It’s time to do as larger urban centres do, and extend last call. It’s good for the economy, and can even help cut down on unsavoury behaviour. And we’re not the only ones who saw how successful the extended hours were during the Olympic gold medal game and thought ‘why aren’t we doing this all the time?’ In Alberta, two cabinet ministers — Thomas Lukaszuk and Jonathan Denis — tweeted about the possibility of extending last call after the incident-free gold-medal game. And now the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission says its reviewing the liquor laws. In Montreal, mayor Denis Coderre says he wants to extend last call in certain areas of the city. And in Toronto, last call is a serious issue in the mayoral race. Rob Ford isn’t a fan, but candidate David Soknacki has pledged to push a later last call through council.

And do you remember all the turmoil, all the violence and mayhem that occurred when the bars were allowed to open that early? Of course you don’t. Why? Because in the cities from coast to coast that allowed their bars to open early for the gold-medal game, the people who went out drinking at such an ungodly hour were well-behaved.

Regina is a vibrant city that’s growing, and we should definitely be considering the move, too. And it’s not like this is a novel idea. In Alaska closing time is 5am. In Chicago and New York it’s 4am. Heck, in cities like Tokyo, Paris, and more there’s no set closing time at all. The bars stay open until the owners decide they close. Which is why we think the last call at our drinking establishments should be left up to the owners. Imagine a city in which bars closed whenever they felt like it, imagine the benefits — both economically and socially. On the economic side of things, it’s simple math. More hours would mean bars would have to hire more people, which means more jobs. What’s more, longer hours would also mean more money for local businesses, because patrons would be spending more cash at these establishments. Apart from the economic benefits, though, there are social benefits to extending last call, including safety. One of the primary concerns heard from detractors is that giving people more

time to get drunk will lead to greater unruliness. And to an extent you can see where they’re coming from: every night at 2am, intoxicated adults pour into the streets, vying for cabs, food, you name it. Inevitably, less than savoury behaviour ensues. But did you know that extending drinking hours can alleviate this? The Centre for Problem-Oriented Policing currently lists “Relaxing or staggering bar closing times” as one of their recommended solutions to reducing assaults. And it works. In 2005 the British government got rid of closing times altogether. Initial reactions were negative, with 67 percent of respondents in a BBC survey predicting that there would be a rise in public mayhem and binge drinking. Alas, this didn’t happen. Seeing as patrons were no longer being evicted en masse, they trickled out in smaller numbers — all of which left police officers with far more manageable groups to deal with. So it’s time we relaxed our liquor laws and got in line with other, larger cities. Let’s abolish last call and turn the decision of when to close over to bar owners. These editorials are left unsigned because they represent the opinions of Verb magazine, not those of the individual writers. Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

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On Topic: Last week we asked what you thought about providing alcohol in corner stores. Here's what you had to say: – I find it irresponsible for liquor to be sold in cornerstores. That’s Somewhere I went as A kid to buy candy and rent movies , I definatly wouldn’t want to take my child in there providing there is possibly drunken fools wandering about .

– Kids go to corner stores a lot so maybe it wouldn’t be good to sell alcohol out in the open but maybe if there was a separate place where you have to be of age to get into it, then I think this could be a good idea. It would be convenient and it would bring in more business for the stores.

– If you can sell smokes at a 7-11 or whatever then you should be able to sell booze. Same thing.

– I have kids and I think alcohol in the corner store is a good thing. I think if it’s done properly it won’t be drunk people staggering around it’s not like that in European cities where you can get booze

text yo thoughtsur to 881 ve r b

driving over to a cold beer and wine or way out of the way to the liquor store. Convenience would be great!

8372

OFF TOPIC

anywhere. I think having a more direct experience with responsible people enjoying alcohol will make it better for the kids in the long run. Just my two cents.

– You want to have alcohol sold in convenience stores in a province that can’t even get itself around to allowing strippers and booze in the same place (or just barely allowing it) wishful thinking. Would be nice but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

– Going to sev at 3 in the morning to get booze means they are going to have to hire more security and train their staff better it’s already kind of crazy around there with drunk people buying food and stuff imagine if they can have more booze it would have to be monitored really closely.

– I would love to be able to run to the corner store to get a bottle of wine when I need it, rather than

– Lorne Molleken did a lot of good for this province and it’s a shame people just focus on losing the Mem Cup. He made the tough decisions. Easy to be an armchair critic when you don’t have to be the ones making the calls. I think he did the best he could even though I didn’t agree with a lot of the moves he made.

races and accepted each other, things could be better for humanity.

– Cool, back to freezing right away I love how crappy the weather is this year oh wait it’s every year.

– Why does it seem like drivers always want to race? Have they never heard of the phrase “slower traffic keep right”?

– I have lost two hubcaps in a week. I know everyone says this but the potholes are the worst. Can’t wait til there fixed

– 1. To the person who says we need 1 day without shopping we used to have that. Used to be you couldn’t shop on sunday. 2. Our busses aren’t that bad I’ve taken the bus in many different cities and ours are pretty good .

– Almost B Marleys bday gonna celebrate 420 with ya!

In response to “Fare thee well.” Local, #122

– Free hugs are fine but why can’t there be a free ill take your test for you booth man you’d make some good $$

(April 4, 2014)

SOUND OFF – I’m not sure what you meant about the Bible being sexist. A little more explanation on your part might help me to understand.

– How do we go from tiny little kids in awe of the world and not concerned about who our friends are? Skin colour does not keep kids from making friends. Yet, when we grow up, we are taught that there are differences. The only difference is the attitudes people form. If we embraced other

– I thought the girls I work with were grown up. Like really, stop gossiping about everyone and take a good look at yourself. You think I got attitude because I have an opinion. I haven’t even begun to have attitude girl....

– The question on everyones mind this week... Is it time to put away my parka and big boots?

– It might be time to take a beat and check your ego. Not everything is about you, so don’t take things personally. Believe the good that is out there and love yourself.

– Peace n luv all u need

Next week: What do you think about extending last call in bars? Text in your thoughts to Verb to get in on the conversation.

We print your texts verbatim each week. Text in your thoughts and reactions to our stories and content, or anything else on your mind

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life after death Photos: courtesy of Dirk “The Pixeleye” Behlau

New beginnings for Toronto psychobilly road warriors the Creepshow by Alex J MacPherson

L

ife After Death, the fourth studio record from the Creepshow, opens with the sound of an emergency room: a beeping heart monitor, a faintly beating heart. Then a murmured word and the unmistakable steady buzz of a flatline, a life expiring on a whitesheeted gurney. But this is only the beginning. When the band launches into “See You In Hell,” a snarling, punk-infused psychobilly ode to new beginnings, it’s clear that the Toronto-based band has been reborn. It is a new beginning after almost ten years on the road and three full-length records. Following the departure of vocalist Sarah Blackwood in late 2012, the band reformed itself, adding singer Kenda Legaspi, drummer Sandro Sanchioni, and guitarist Daniel Flamm to its tattooed and leatherclad ranks. The result was Life After Death, the most concise and polished record the Creepshow has ever produced. Although it lacks the jagged edges of the band’s earlier efforts, Life After Death is more

accessible and more energetic than anything else they have produced. From the manic riffing that shapes the titanic “Born To Lose” to the macabre barroom pop of “Last Call” to the frantic resurrection rock of the title track, Life After Death is a riotous — and riotously fun — collection of songs. Last month, I tracked down the band’s longtime upright bass player, Sean “Sickboy” McNab, to learn more about life after death

would just get in a rehearsal space and hash out the songs. It makes a big difference to be able to drive around in the van and really listen to the songs before we head in to the studio. AJM: Life After Death might also be your most accessible record to date, even though it doesn’t sacrifice the essence of what the band is. Was that something that happened organically? SM: Definitely happened organically. We gave everyone’s ideas a try, and we were open to try new and difference things. Our keyboard player, [Kristian “The Reverend McGinty” Rowles] and I were the main songwriters on the last three records, so we knew this one would still sound like “The Creepshow,” but adding Kenda, Daniel, and Sandro’s ideas really gave us a new spin on things.

Alex J MacPherson: Life After Death feels like the most focused record the band has ever made. Is that a reflection of experience and of refining the band’s sound onstage, or something else? Sean McNab: We put a lot more thought into the songs on this album than in the past. Our guitarist, Daniel [Flamm], is a recording engineer, so we got to demo everyone’s ideas, and then take a while to really listen to them and make changes, add suggestions and whatnot. Normally, we

AJM: “See You In Hell” opens the record with the sound of a heart monitor, the sound of somebody waking up after a near-death experience. Did making this record feel like a rebirth for the band?

SM: Most definitely! The band has a new life, we are having more fun now than ever.

to step it up a bit, and we thought it would be cool to have them trading off solos.

AJM: Specifically, how did the arrival of Kenda and Sandro affect the dynamic of the band and the writing and recording of Life After Death?

AJM: The rebirth theme is echoed on the title track, which closes the record with the same heartbeat sound and someone whispering, ‘Welcome back, man.’ That seems to imply that the future’s really wide open. Where do you see the band heading in the next year or two?

SM: They are both super excited and love being on the road, which Ginty and I love as well, so that equals lots of shows [and] touring, and no complaining! Complaining is tour cancer. Like I said before, we are all on the same page now, and have one common goal. Write music, play shows, have fun. AJM: One of the things that really stands out to me is how deftly the guitars are balanced against the Reverend McGinty’s organ parts and solos. Is that the secret behind the sound of this record, and maybe the band in general? SM: Before this album, we never really had a guitarist that could rip a shredding solo, so it was always Ginty doing the solos on keyboard. Having Daniel opened up the opportunity

SM: There is nothing holding us back anymore from doing what we want to do. We still have a bunch more touring to do till the end of this year, and then in January it’s our ten year anniversary, so we are planning a special release for that! The Creepshow April 18 @ The Exchange $15 (X-Ray Records), $20 (door) Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

@VerbRegina amacpherson@verbnews.com

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on the edge of disaster

Small gestures meet huge landscapes in Amalie Atkins’ first major show

L

ast spring, the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art presented an exhibition featuring more than sixty contemporary Canadian artists. In addition to heavyweights Marcel Dzama and Douglas Coupland, Oh, Canada featured the work of a young filmmaker from Saskatchewan, Amalie Atkins. Atkins, who lives and works in Saskatoon, studied textiles and fabric art before shifting her gaze to filmmaking. The quality of her short films, as well as the ease with which they can be transformed into vibrant installations, compelled Timothy Long, head curator at the MacKenzie Art Gallery, to organize what became Atkins’ first major solo exhibition — we live on the edge of disaster and imagine we are in a musical. “I’ve been following her career for a few years and watching with interest

the development of her filmmaking,” Long says. “I thought with her inclusion in Oh, Canada that this was the time to take a closer look at her work here in Saskatchewan, where she’s been based for many years. I just had a sense that she was ready to take on the challenge of doing a larger exhibition.” The exhibition includes two of Atkins’ most well-known installations, “Three Minute Miracle” and “Scenes From A Secret World,” as well as four excerpts from the project that gave the exhibition its name, a massive undertaking that Long describes as an “epic or an opus.” Unlike most video installations, Atkin’s works are housed in elaborate pavilions, each a testament to her background in textile art and her commitment to accessibility. “The pavilions are irresistible,” Long says. “You really feel like this is a place for you to sit down and enter another world.”

by alex J MacPherson

Atkins’ films are linked together by the stark contrast between small gestures and expansive, bleak landscapes. “Embrace” depicts two elderly women walking toward each other along a grid road. The women are identical twins wearing identical clothes. No words are exchanged; the women simply clasp each other and bring their foreheads together. “In that gesture there’s something so sweet and so eloquent in a minimalist way,” Long says. “She distilled something in that image that speaks to the way that women speak to each other, the way that sisters relate to each other. It’s not in language. It’s in the body.” Another prominent theme running through Atkins’ films involves the collision between reality and imaginative fantasy. Both “Three Minute Miracle” and “Scenes From A Secret World” cast the inevitability of human existence against the surreal timeless-

ness of a fantasy world. In the former, a woman with a cake ends up in a church packed with dancing animals; in the latter, a young girl meets a character with the head of a wolf. This is important because it highlights Atkins’ ability to fuse narrative storytelling and the creation of poignant, lasting images. “They’re coherent, they have an internal drive to them,” Long says of the films. “But if you look at the pieces from we live on the edge of disaster, they’re really just episodes. They’re not complete stories; they’re a gesture.” Atkins’ images are more than just abstractions, however. The films in we live on the edge of disaster succeed not because they are beautiful, but because they are recognizable. By relating

simple gestures to the vastness of the universe, represented by the unforgiving landscape, Atkins draws out and explores what Long describes as “the psyche that seems to derive from the landscape of western Canada.” There is a sense of futility bound up in each of the films, but also a sense of hope. The gestures made by Atkins’ characters seem almost Sisyphean, but that makes them matter so much more. “That’s why I wanted to feature her work,” Long says. “It’s working at a very deep level in terms of the images that roam around in our subconscious.” we live on the edge of disaster and imagine we are in a musical Through June 14 @ MacKenzie Art Gallery

western textures

Ken Gillespie’s landscape paintings & his long journey to becoming a professional artist

I

n the early 1990s, Ken Gillespie was working in Calgary, Alberta. He was the president of a fairly large geophysical data processing firm, but he didn’t care for the work. “I’ve never been a person who’s really comfortable in a regimented sort of lifestyle,” he says from his home in the Okanagan. Desperate for a distraction, Gillespie started to paint.

Photo: courtesy oF assiniboia gallery

1. Ken Gillespie, Hidden Vines, Acrylic Acrylic Canvas

He began by taking a few classes at a local art supply shop. Those classes soon turned into a serious hobby. Then, he says, “the next thing you know, you’re doing it every day.” In 1992, Gillespie quit his job to concentrate on making art. When he walked out of the office for the last time, he had not sold a single painting. “I just had the belief that I could do it,” he says, chuckling. “In some ways, it was a little bit scary. But if you believe you can do something, I guess it’s not as overwhelming.” Over the last twenty-two years, Gillespie has proven himself many times over. Working mostly in acrylics, his impressionistic landscape paintings highlight his experiences living in western Canada. Many depict British Columbia, one of the most geographically diverse provinces in the country. Some of his latest paintings are on display in Western Textures,

by alex J MacPherson

which captures not only Gillespie’s eye for striking landscapes, but also his growth and development as a technical painter. Gillespie’s first forays into painting were accompanied by plenty of reading on the subject. Not surprisingly, his early paintings emerged as attempts to capture the romanticism of the best landscapes. “You’re looking at very romantic things and thinking that’s what you want to paint,” he says, “and you want to paint them because they are romantic subjects.” These impulses soon faded, only to be replaced by a fascination with the technical side of painting — and the difficulties inherent to capturing light. After twenty-two years, he is still enthralled by the alchemy of brushstrokes and splotches of colour, of individual movements coming together to form beams of light streaking across open prairie and cascading down jagged mountains.

“It all has to look good as paint, as strokes, as colour,” he says. “Really, it’s all about trying to put together a bunch of abstract shapes. Whatever you’re putting down, it’s not the real thing. It’s just an abstraction of something, and the shapes themselves have to make sense in an abstract sense, as opposed to being the scene itself.” Gillespie understands that different people like and appreciate paintings for different reasons. But he is not particularly interested in the subjects of his paintings. He feels the same way about a painting of the B.C. interior as he does about a vast, empty seascape. What matters to him, and what he has spent the last two decades refining, is the idea that making a great painting is about more than simply painting something great. This is not always easy, however. “From when I started until now, I’m a hundred miles from there,” he says of

his development as an artist. “There’s years where you actually go backwards, right? You step back. It’s not always moving forward. So you go down different roads and they go to dead-ends, and you have to backtrack sometimes and find another way forward. But that doesn’t mean that those dead-end roads weren’t part of [what] made you what you are. You just have to understand the process.” After a pause the retired geophysical data company president laughs and adds, “I’m pretty happy with where I am now, compared to where I’ve been some other times.” Western Textures Through April 26 @ Assiniboia Gallery Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

@VerbRegina amacpherson@verbnews.com

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Photo: courtesy of Ryan Walter Wagner

No Can Do?

After ten years on the road, Ladyhawk refuse to call it quits by Alex J MacPherson

C

areers in the music industry tend to follow one of a few predictable patterns. Some bands, through a mystical alchemy of talent, timing, and luck, are catapulted to fame overnight. Others find success more slowly, by releasing strong records and touring exhaustively. Ladyhawk, a rock band from Vancouver, B.C., followed the latter course. But it is not an easy path, and after ten years the inevitable life changes and diversions made it more and more difficult for the band to keep being a band. In 2004, Duffy Driediger, Darcy Hancock, Sean Hawryluk, and Ryan Peters were the best of friends. They worked together and they ate together and they played music together. And, in 2006, they released their first album together, a collection of deeply earnest rock songs titled Ladyhawk. Containing too many pop influences to be called a straightforward rock album and too many long guitar solos and breakdowns to be labeled a pop record, Ladyhawk established the band in Canada and in the United States as purveyors of honest, distinctive, upbeat guitar music. The band released two more records in 2007 and 2008, an EP titled Fight For Anarchy and a full-length called Shots. Both records continued the trend established by Ladyhawk: moments of darkly introspective reflection punctuated by what Pitchfork termed “Paul Bunyan-big, capital-R rock moments, with solos and crashing cymbals and howled vocals.” And then life started to get in the way. After touring in support of Shots, the four musicians made plans to re-

cord a third full-length album. Shortly after the sessions began, however, the band effectively broke up. It would be almost three years before the four men reunited. No Can Do, which was released in 2012, emerged as an extended meditation on what it means to be in a rock band and not be twenty-six anymore. No Can Do is a catalogue of uncertainty wrapped in the guise of a pop-rock record. On the title track, frontman Duffy Driediger moans: “No one taught me how to play / I had to go and find it out the hard way.” On “You Read My Mind,” he frames the end of his twenties as an existential crisis, or at least an emotional one: “You read my mind, the party’s over / So you best get in line with all the others / ‘Cause they ain’t going nowhere.” From a musical perspective, No Can Do marks a significant change for the band. Gone are the soaring solos and the extended guitar

to begin with, seemed to herald a more sweeping change for the band. Instead of embarking on a long tour, Ladyhawk played just a few shows in support of the record. Then the band went into hibernation. But No Can Do, which at times can feel like a eulogy for four musicians burned-out after a decade of living like musicians, was not the end. This year, Ladyhawk decided to dust off its guitars and drums and head out on another tour — a celebration of ten years spent making music that matters. Billed as the “Decade of Passive Aggression” tour, the band’s latest string of shows is far from its most ambitious tour. But it is also proof that Ladyhawk refuses to die, that something keeps its members coming back, again and again. Guitarist Darcy Hancock isn’t entirely sure what has kept the band going for so long. But he doesn’t want to stop, or even think about it, really.

I think everyone feels pretty lucky that we have fans, and for every opportunity that we’ve been given over the years. darcy hancock

breakdowns. Driven by a few piercing riffs and relentless, overdriven rhythm guitar parts, the songs on No Can Do are short — of the ten tracks, only three run past three minutes — and more clearly pop-influenced than those on Ladyhawk or Shots. And the album’s arrival, uncertain

Alex J MacPherson: I understand you haven’t been writing music or even playing together much lately. Is that right? Darcy Hancock: No, not really. We never really know how much longer we’re going to do it, you know? It’s

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fun every time we do it, but life pulls you in other directions. I mean, personally, I would tour constantly. But not everybody in the band wants to do that. When we finished touring the last record there just wasn’t a chance to do anything else for it, which was a bummer — we only did thirteen shows or something. AJM: Yet you decided to do another tour to celebrate ten years of making music. What do you think has kept this band going for a decade, even with some extended breaks? DH: Maybe I won’t let it die. I don’t know. I mean, it’s very easy not to do anything, in all aspects of life I suppose. But I’ve always tried to remain motivated with this because it’s really rewarding … and we are all friends. It’s just that we don’t always hang out or create all the time. It’s just that every time it’s been awhile I get an itch and request that the band do something, you know? AJM: At the same time, that’s got to be true for the other guys — something keeps them coming back again and again. DH: The band is rewarding, you know? I think everyone feels pretty lucky that we have fans, and for every opportunity that we’ve been given over the years. We eventually got tired but I think everyone actually has a lot of energy to play right now. Rehearsals have been going well. I feel like every time we play, even though

Photo: courtesy of Ryan Walter Wagner

there’s so much space in between, we get better somehow. AJM: Did the thought of ten years of Ladyhawk get you to take some time to think about the band’s history and catalogue? How do you think the band has changed over that time?

DH: Kind of. At one point I wanted to write a piece about it, but I never really got around to it. When we started we were like a gang. We were inseparable. We did everything together. We worked five days a week together at the same warehouse, and then we’d go home for an hour, have dinner, and go jam or go out. We were inseparable. I guess when you get in your thirties it’s a little bit harder to live that way, for some reason. AJM: What about musically? How would you characterize the band’s growth between Ladyhawk and No Can Do — and beyond? DH: We’re better at playing together, and I guess we’re better musicians because we hear things differently now. But it’s hard to really explain. At least, I’ve always found it hard. Our band, we never tried to be anything, you know? It wasn’t a conscious sound we were going for. It’s what happens when we play. So even when we record and we’re like, let’s try and make this song sound like this sonically, it still sounds like our band. Obviously on the last album the songs are very short pop songs. We used to jam a lot more, drag songs out. It’s a hard question to answer. AJM: I think new bands face an awful lot of pressure to conform, or to be something identifiable. When you guys first started, did that come into play? DH: We just didn’t think about it. Duffy had a solo show booked and had a handful of songs. Three days before the show, he asked us if we’d back him on half of them. It was fun so we kept going. We weren’t like, let’s start a band. The band started and we were like, I guess we need a name. One thing about reviews we never understood is how people will often say, they were trying to go for this, but they didn’t succeed or whatever. Do other bands try to go for things? I don’t understand what they’re talking about. AJM: At the same time, I think it’s pretty clear that No Can Do marked a big change. The songs are shorter, more pop-influenced, and at the same time they tend to explore this end-ofyour-twenties malaise. Is that just a

reflection of where you were when you made it? DH: Yeah. We did basically break up before recording that album. We started recording some of it in 2009, and then stopped talking. I think it was maybe [a friend] in Calgary that asked us to play a show. I was like, let’s just play a few and try and record some more songs. But yeah, obviously, Duffy’s life was different as the lyric-writer and the songwriter, so yeah, confronting the changes in life. But life keeps changing. I’d be curious to see what he writes about next. AJM: How about in terms of the music? DH: During the first two albums we listened to tons of classic rock, very much rock-based music. Speaking for myself, my favourite music of all time is Depeche Mode, Pet Shop Boys, New Order — pop music that doesn’t have guitar solos. Guitar solos are fun. But I think we just stopped liking that kind of thing. We didn’t want to drag things out. There’s still a lot of energy to the music but we restrained ourselves from going wild. We just focused on the pop song, I guess. And that was alright: the songs weren’t long, so there wasn’t really room and there didn’t seem to be a point to add these solo sections or jam out. AJM: Does the fact that you’re touring again mean that you’re also thinking about making another record? DH: I see no reason why not. We still get along, we’re still all creative. The challenge is finding the money to record records, but that can be done. And there’s nothing else that I’m good at in life. Everyone has put more work into this craft than anything else in their life. To push it away seems ridiculous to me. Hopefully we get to something. Ladyhawk April 23 @ O’Hanlon’s Irish Pub Free Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

@VerbRegina amacpherson@verbnews.com

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Photos: courtesy of marc messett

where the batter is better London Jack’s values authenticity by mj deschamps

H

aving grown up with a British mother, I remember going out for fish and chips back in Ottawa was always a big point of contention. As a kid, I was happy with anything that I thought tasted good (hey, I was only 10!), but I recall my mother turning up her nose at almost every plate set in front of her, claiming that the “so-called fish and chips” dish she had ordered wasn’t authentic. I was convinced she was just stuck in her ways, until a few trips to the UK later, after which I realized my mom was right (as usual) about there being a huge difference in flavour. While many local eateries serve the classic British combo with their own take on it, it’s always tough to

cod and haddock made to order, and deep fries a thin, crispy batter onto the flaky fish. The key, said Stewart, is for the batter to compliment the fish rather than overpower it. And while it may sound like an oxymoron that authentic British favourites are made almost exclusively from Saskatchewan-sourced products (from the chips to the mushy peas), she said what makes London Jack’s the ‘real thing’ is the shop’s focus on fresh, from-scratch offerings. I cozied up in one of the few dinerstyle booths (the shop is mainly geared towards take-out right now, but is hoping to expand both the kitchen and eatin spaces soon), while Stewart brought out basket after basket, until I could no longer see the tabletop. Of course, I started off with London Jack’s signature meal — two big pieces of golden cod over thick, soft chips, along with sides of spiced mushy peas and coleslaw. The batter was crispy and thin, and flaked apart easily, while the fish was juicy and full of flavour. Meanwhile, the homemade tarter was creamy and tangy, with a generous amount of dill mixed in. Next, I bit into one of my all time favourites: a Scotch egg. If you’ve never had this UK pub favourite, I’m sorry to tell you that you’ve been eating hard-boiled eggs all wrong. Wrapped in tender, spiced sausage meat, and coated in a perfectly crispy layer of deep-fried breadcrumbs, the egg was a perfect accompaniment to the light and crunchy coleslaw it came with,

compare to the real thing. That longing for authentic fish and chips in Regina is what prompted Isobel Stewart to open up London Jack’s. The Broad Street shop is run by the Welsh-born Stewart family — both parents and kids — who are well acquainted with the bona fide taste of flaky, white fish in a thin, crispy batter, served on a bed of thick-cut, freshly sliced potatoes. “This was all my mom’s vision — she’s tried fish and chips [in Regina], and really wanted to bring the real British flavour here,” said daughter Lauren, who manages the shop. The biggest difference with British-style deep-fried fish, she said, is the batter: London Jack’s makes their own in-house, seasoned blend, batters all their fresh, North Atlantic

let’s go drinkin’ Verb’s mixology guide Born to be british

Ingredients

Some of the best gins come out of the UK – but it takes a brave soul to drink it straight. For the fainter of heart, try mixing in fresh fruit and syrup to bring out the spirit’s sweet side.

1.5 oz gin apple slices 2 lemon wedges 2 oz apple juice 1/4 oz triple sec 3/4 oz simple syrup

directions

Muddle four apple slices, lemon wedges and simple syrup together into a cocktail shaker. Add in gin, apple juice, triple sec and ice. Shake well and strain into glass with ice. Garnish with apple slices and serve.

which helped balance out some of the warm, smoky flavours. A pair of thick salmon cakes full of soft potato and flaky pink pieces, all with a hint of dill and a dash of lemon, came next. Although the patties feel quite dense, they actually taste very light — almost cake-like, in fact — and come packed in a crispy breadcrumb coating. A few North American staples have found their way onto the shop’s menu, too — with a distinct London Jack’s twist, of course — like the chili cheese dog wrapped in bacon (smothered in a meaty, tomato-rich homemade sauce) and the fat onion rings in a sweet batter. And if you doubted whether there was anything else they could possibly deep-fry here, I have four magic words for you: deep-fried Mars bar. That’s right — warm, melted chocolate and caramel in a crispy, toffee-like shell. London Jack’s is full of pleasant surprises, too, including the fact that those with gluten intolerances can also enjoy all the deep-fried fish and chips they can handle. The shop stocks gluten-free batter, and keeps a separate fryer, isolated

from the others, where they do all their gluten-free frying. All of the gravy they regularly use in the shop is also made from a gluten-free mix — and honestly, you’d never know the difference. London Jack’s has built a loyal customer base in its two years of frying up fish in the Queen City, but Stewart says she hopes Regina is just the beginning for her family’s business. With a newly trademarked name, a second location opening up soon in Hawaii (that’s right — London Jack’s is going international), and the family’s eyes on Saskatoon, Moose Jaw and beyond, I anticipate seeing a few more Union Jack flags waving around the prairies soon. Bring on the British Invasion. London Jack’s Authentic British Fish and Chips 363 Broad Street | (306) 206 3474 Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

@VerbRegina mdeschamps@verbnews.com

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music

Next Week

coming up

shannon lyon

florida georgia line

luke bryan

@ the club thursday, april 24 – $15

@ brandt Centre saturday, april 19 – $50+

@ Craven country jamboree Friday, july 11 – $199 (whole festival)

For Shannon Lyon, his musical journey began back in 1990 when he formed his first band, Strange Days. The band went on to achieve national acclaim, but it wasn’t meant to be. In 1993, the band broke up and Lyon set out solo. His first album, released in 1994, was called Buffalo White. Since then, Lyon has kept busy. He’s released nine more albums and shared the stage with acts such as Ray LaMontagne, Blue Rodeo and Bruce Cockburn in venues from Canada to Europe to Australia. Playing a twangy brand of folk music, Lyon — who hails from Ontario — has a rich, sonorous vocal style that hits the heart and mind in one emotional swoop. He’ll be rocking the stage at the Club next week; tickets will be available at the door.

Florida Georgia Line, or FLG, is a country pop duo consisting of Brian Kelley (from Ormond Beach, Florida), and Tyler Hubbard (from Monroe, Georgia). Although the pair have only been on the scene since 2010, they have already achieved a strong fan base the world over. They released a six-song EP called Anything Like Me back in 2010, followed by their second EP, It’z Just What We Do, in 2012. But it was with their first studio album, 2012’s Here’s to the Good Times, that Kelley and Hubbard really broke into the mainstream, as they became the only artists in history to join Brooks & Dunn in having their first three singles hit #1 for multiple weeks each. FLG will be playing Regina next weekend. Tickets available through Ticketmaster.

“All My Friends Say” … “Rain Is a Good Thing” … “Country Girl (Shake It for Me)” … “Drunk on You.” Anyone who knows these songs knows they’re Luke Bryan songs, that they’re some of the hits that helped propel the Georgia-born musician into the upper echelons of country music. But did you know that Bryan started out his music career as a songwriter? It’s true. Back in the mid-2000s, Bryan made a career for himself in Nashville writing songs for people like Travis Tritt and Billy Currington. Then he signed with Capitol Records and released his debut album, I’ll Stay Me. Since then it’s been onward and upward for the singer/ songwriter. If you’re a fan of country, you won’t want to miss Bryan when he rocks Craven. Tickets through www. cravencountryjamboree.com. – By Adam Hawboldt

Photos courtesy of: the artist / the artist / the artist

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april 11 » april 19 The most complete live music listings for Regina.

Friday 11

SUN Zoom Sparks / Artful Dodger — With Bastard Poetry + more. 8pm / Cover TBD The Fortunate Isles, Hunger Hush / The Club — A night of indie rock. 7:30pm / Cover TBD

DJ Dallas / Eldorado — Regina’s number one party DJ! 9pm / $5 The Otherz / Eldorado — Classic rock and country covers! 10pm / $5 DJ Pat & DJ Kim / Habano’s — Local DJs spin top 40 hits every Friday night. 9pm / $5 Redbeard’s Tribute to the Regina Music Scene /  Lancaster Taphouse — Come out for some live music. 8pm / $10 Puttin’ on the Foil / McNally’s Tavern — There’s a new band in town. 10pm / $5 Halteras / Mercury — An evening of retro-surf music. 9pm / Cover TBD Albert / Pure — Appearing every Friday night. 10pm / $5 cover

Third Degree Birnz / Pump — Saskatchewan’s party band. 9pm / Cover TBD Sonic Orchid / Sip Nightclub — A hardrocking local four-piece. 10pm / Cover TBD DJ Longhorn / Whiskey Saloon — One of Regina’s best DJs. 8pm / Cover TBD Alex Runions / Whiskey Saloon — An urban country singer/songwriter. 9pm / $10 Something Majestic / YQR Nite Club — DJ and producer from Winnipeg. 9:30pm / $6

Saturday 12

Roots n’ Herbs / Artful Dodger — Featuring Dan Silinger. 8pm / Cover TBD

Dreams / Casino Regina — The ultimate Fleetwood Mac cover band. 9pm / $20+ Sarah Farthing / Creative City Centre — Folk-rock meets pop. 7:30pm / $10 DJ Dallas / Eldorado — Regina’s number one party DJ! 9pm / $5 The Otherz / Eldorado — Classic rock and country covers! 10pm / $5 Red Beard’s Rockin’ Birthday Bash / The Exchange — A tribute to Regina’s music scene. 8:30pm / $10 F-Holes / Lancaster — Rockabilly, swing, roots and more. 9pm / Cover TBD Bluessmyth / McNally’s Tavern — Rock ‘n blues from Winnipeg. 10pm / $5 Third Degree Birnz / Pump — Saskatchewan’s party band. 9pm / Cover TBD Wafflehouse / Pure — Doing what he does best, every Saturday. 10pm / $5 cover Sonic Orchid / Sip Nightclub — A hardrocking local four-piece. 10pm / Cover TBD Alex Runions / Whiskey Saloon — An urban country singer/songwriter. 9pm / $10

Sunday 13

Red Beard’s Tribute to Regina Music Scene / Artful Dodger — Featuring local live talent. 8:30pm / $5 Songwriter Sunday / Creative City Centre — Featuring Fern + more. 7:30pm / $10

Monday 14

Open Mic Night / The Artful Dodger — Come down and jam! 8pm / No cover Monday Night Jazz / Bushwakker — With Ray Eberle + more. 8pm / No cover

Tuesday 15

Music Jam / Artful Dodger — Break out your instruments. 8pm / No coveR DJ night / Q Nightclub + Lounge — DJs Snakeboots and Code E. 9:30pm / No cover

Wednesday 16

Jimmy Rankin / Artful Dodger — A solo artist from Cape Breton. 8pm / $25 Wednesday Night Folk / Bushwakker — Theresa and Carol. 9pm / No cover WayBack Wednesday / McNally’s Tavern — Featuring Leather Cobra. 9pm / No cover

Thursday 17

JJ Voss / Artful Dodger — A local altcountry musician. 8pm / Cover TBD Queen City Rocks Finals / The Exchange — The stage is set. 8pm / $10 Decibel Frequency / Gabbo’s Nightclub — A night of electronic fun. 10pm / Cover $5 PS Fresh / The Hookah Lounge — With DJ Ageless + DJ Drewski. 7pm / No cover Open Mic Night / King’s Head — Come out, play some tunes. 8pm / No cover

Sean Burns Band / Lancaster — A talented singer/songwriter. 9pm / Cover TBD Wonderland / McNally’s Tavern — Onehit wonders and classic rock. 8pm / $5 Foxx Worthee / Pump — A dynamic female country duo. 9pm / Cover TBD DJ Longhorn / Whiskey Saloon — One of Regina’s best DJs. 8pm / Cover TBD

Friday 18

When it was dark yet / Campion College Chapel — Piano music and other voices. 7:30pm / Free April Wine / Casino Regina — A good ol’ Canadian rock band. 8pm / SOLD OUT DJ Dallas / Eldorado — Regina’s number one party DJ! 9pm / $5 Sean Burns / Eldorado — Get your weekend started right! 9pm / $5 The Creepshow / The Exchange — With Herb and the Humans + more. 8pm / $15+ DJ Pat & DJ Kim / Habano’s — Local DJs spin top 40 hits every Friday. 9pm / $5 cover Big Chill Fridays’ / Lancaster — Cool lounge beats. 8pm / Cover TBD Wonderland / McNally’s Tavern — Onehit wonders and classic rock. 8pm / $5 Foxx Worthee / Pump — A dynamic female country duo. 9pm / Cover TBD Albert / Pure — Appearing every Friday night. 10pm / $5 cover DJ Longhorn / Whiskey Saloon — One of Regina’s best DJs. 8pm / Cover TBD Chris Henderson / Whiskey Saloon — An local country singer/songwriter. 9pm / $10

Saturday 19

Florida Georgia Line / Brandt — A rockin’ country duo. 7:30pm / $39+ ( DJ Dallas / Eldorado Country Rock Bar — Regina’s number one party DJ! 9pm / $5 Sean Burns / Eldorado — Come out for a rocking good night! 9pm / $5 Wonderland / McNally’s Tavern — Onehit wonders and classic rock. 8pm / $5 Foxx Worthee / Pump Roadhouse — A dynamic female country duo. 9pm / Cover TBD Wafflehouse / Pure Ultra Lounge — Doing what he does best, every Saturday night. 10pm / $5 cover Chris Henderson / Whiskey Saloon — An local country singer/songwriter. 9pm / $10

Get listed Have a live show you'd like to promote? Let us know! layout@verbnews.com

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Friday, April 4 @

queen city hub

Check out our Facebook page! These photos will be uploaded to Facebook on Thursday, April 17. facebook.com/verbregina

The Queen City Hub 1843 Hamilton Street (306) 522 9675

Photography by Marc Messett

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Photo: Courtesy of Summit Entertainment Lionsgate

what he does best

Costner wades back into the world of sports film and makes a big splash by adam hawboldt

I

have talked about Kevin Costner in these pages before. Talked about the man-crush I have on him and about how he seems to suck up the air around him with a screen presence all his own. What I didn’t talk about is how good he is in sports movies. Like, hellfire hot-damn good. Like, the best of all time. Seriously. Name a better sports-movie actor and I’ll come to your house and do your laundry for a month. No jokes. This is Crash Davis we’re talking about here, folks. The guy who took Bull Durham and elevated the film to cult status. This is Ray Kinsella who, in Field of Dreams, built it and they came. This is Roy McAvoy, the guy who taught us all how to go down in flames with class in Tin Cup. This is what Kevin Costner does best — sports movies. And now he’s back with a new film called Draft Day. How is it? Well, let’s just say it’s pretty good. It’s no Bull Durham (then again, what is?), but it’s

day. Sonny is under orders from the team’s owner, Harvey Molina (played by the always excellent Frank Langella), to “make a splash” at this year’s draft. And what a splash he makes!

a whole lot better than Costner’s last sports flick, For the Love of the Game. Directed by Ivan Reitman (of Ghostbusters and Stripes fame), Draft Day shows you 24 hours inside

…you’ll enjoy [Draft Day] — whether you’re a hardcore football fan or not. Adam Hawboldt

Without giving away too many details, let’s just say that some of the moves Sonny makes during the 2014 draft are the kind of moves that would get a general manager fired — on the spot. So how does it all end for Sonny? Well, you’ll have to watch and find out. And while a movie about the inner workings of an NFL football team on draft day may not be overly appealing to a great many people,

the world of Cleveland Browns’ general manager Sonny Weaver Jr. (Costner). And what a hectic 24 hours they are! Not only does Sonny have to deal with family issues (his mom has been recently widowed) and issues of the heart — his salary cap expert Ali (Jennifer Garner) is his lover and his future baby momma — but he also has to deal with all the intricate and not-so-intricate issues an NFL general manager must face on draft

somehow Reitman manages to make the film engaging throughout. He uses a “24”-esque ticking clock to build tension, he transitions seamlessly from the front office to locker rooms to practice fields to personal calls and beyond. He also has Kevin Costner do most of the heavy lifting in the film which, as we established earlier, means half the battle is already won. That said, Draft Day is far from perfect. Some of the subplots aren’t really necessary and at times it can feel like one long, glamorous product placement for the NFL. Still, Draft Day is a solid, entertaining and at times very funny

draft day Ivan Reitman Starring Kevin Costner, Jennifer Garner, Frank Langella + Dennis Leary Directed by

110 minutes | PG

sports movie. One that you’ll enjoy — whether you’re a hardcore football fan or not.

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a thing of great beauty

Oscar winner The Great Beauty well worth the price of admission by adam hawboldt

T

here are films out there that have won Oscars when they shouldn’t have. Films like 1998’s Shakespeare in Love (when it should’ve been Saving Private Ryan or Elizabeth), 1941’s How Green Was My Valley (Citizen Kane was a no-brainer), and — as much as I hate to admit it — 1976’s Rocky (which definitely should’ve went to Taxi Driver). Rest assured that Paolo Sorrentino’s The Great Beauty (La Grande Bellezza in Italian) isn’t one of those films. Up against The Broken Circle Breakdown, The Hunt, The Missing Picture and Omar in the Academy’s 2013 Best Foreign Language Film Category, The Great Beauty took home the Oscar, and deservedly so. An intimate, extravagant portrait of Rome, hedonism, and the Roman elite, The Great Beauty is, well, a film of great beauty. It stars Toni Servillo as Jep Gambardella, an aging journalist, novelist, and socialite who has lived his life to the fullest. He’s enjoyed more than his fair share of parties, spent countless hours pondering the meaning of life in cafes, and bedded more women than he can possibly remember. When we first meet Jep, he’s standing alone at his 65th birthday

the great beauty Paolo Sorrentino Starring Toni Servillo, Sabrina Ferilli + Carlo Verdone Directed by

142 minutes | NR

party, smoking a cigarette and swaying to the music as partygoers dance on the terrace overlooking the breathtaking skyline of Rome. Jep has lived a life of pure and princely hedonism, but lately he’s begun to question his existence. He’s begun to wonder whether he’ll ever find real beauty and, in it, truth. After his party, Jep befriends a beautiful 40-year-old stripper named Ramona (Sabrina Ferilli) and introduces her to his lifestyle of excess. While their relationship develops, the film begins to unfold in snapshots of eerie and beautiful scenes from Jep’s past. What ensues is a memory play, a melancholic meditation on death and life and all the brief, fleeting moments that make up our existence. Shot with luxurious style by cinematographer Luca Bigazzi, The Great Beauty will feel familiar to anyone who knows Italian cinema. With its fantastical whimsy, its journalist main character, and the attention it

Photo: Courtesy of Medusa Film

pays to capturing the malaise and ennui of Rome’s high society, the film definitely feels like at updated version of Fellini’s La Dolce Vita. But while it nods to Fellini, The Great Beauty also manages to be distinctive and excellent in its own right. That’s not to say it’s a perfect movie. The running time (coming in at over two hours) is a bit long, and some of the dialogue is slow and obscure. But for the

most part, The Great Beauty is one heckuva film, a sweeping, masterful movie that uses non-traditional narrative and glorious shots of Rome to make you think, to make you laugh and cry and — if you’re a person of a certain breed — to begin to ponder your own existence. The Great Beauty is that kind of movie. The kind of movie that totally and unquestionably deserved the Oscar it received.

The Great Beauty will be opening at Regina Public Library on April 17; see reginalibrary.ca for more information.

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Š Elaine M. Will | blog.E2W-Illustration.com | Check onthebus.webcomic.ws/ for previous editions!

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timeout

crossword canadian criss-cross 27. Type of West Indies music 29. Argumentative 32. Map within a map 36. Eggs 37. Places for needles 39. Horse food 40. Trims a tree 42. Increases 43. Eating utensil 44. Trash that is left laying where it doesn’t belong 46. Piece of pasta 48. Up to 49. Late 50. Quarry 51. Tina of “30 Rock”

1. Combination of words 2. Gives a hand to 3. Roman numeral for 500 4. Winter apple 5. Constellation between Scorpius and Pavo 6. Go out with 7. It’s in potatoes 8. 200 milligrams 9. German wife 11. Happen as a consequence 12. Table parts 14. Minor 17. CFL trophy 20. Point a finger at 21. Upbeat, in music

24. Card with a heart on it 26. Unit of weight 28. Communion service 29. Number of votes recorded 30. Egg-shaped 31. Portable computer 33. Poorly made 34. Soon after the start 35. Small boy 38. Common contraction 41. Use a spoon 43. Warning heard on a golf course 45. Compass heading 47. Lout

A

B

9 7 1 3 6 8 4 2 5 8 5 4 2 9 7 6 3 1 3 6 2 4 1 5 7 8 9 2 4 8 6 5 3 9 1 7 1 3 6 7 4 9 2 5 8 7 9 5 8 2 1 3 4 6 5 2 7 9 8 4 1 6 3 6 1 9 5 3 2 8 7 4 4 8 3 1 7 6 5 9 2

1. Bottom of a paw 4. Rolls of paper money 8. Fire department head 10. Very angry 12. Place to store food 13. Swimming 15. Periods of time 16. Show one’s years 18. Irish language 19. Pedal next to the brake 20. Fluid-filled sac that acts to protect against friction 22. Shuffleboard stick 23. Take what doesn’t belong to you 25. Made of baked clay

© walter D. Feener 2014

sudoku answer key

DOWN

3 9 4 6 1 7 8 2 5 7 1 8 5 2 4 3 9 6 5 6 2 9 8 3 4 7 1 8 3 7 2 4 6 5 1 9 9 2 1 7 3 5 6 4 8 6 4 5 8 9 1 7 3 2 4 8 9 3 5 2 1 6 7 2 7 3 1 6 8 9 5 4 1 5 6 4 7 9 2 8 3

ACROSS

Horoscopes April 11 – April 16 Aries March 21–April 19

Leo July 23–August 22

Sagittarius November 23–December 21

Have you gained a modicum of clarity these past few weeks, Aries? Seen the bigger picture? If so, be prepared for it to dwindle.

It’s time to change things up, Leo. It’s time to be more active, so start trying to live healthier — you’ll benefit in the long run.

At some point this week you may find yourself feeling wary of a situation, Sagittarius. Trust your gut instinct.

Taurus April 20–May 20

Virgo August 23–September 22

Capricorn December 22–January 19

If you’ve been feeling a tad offkilter lately, Taurus, there’s good news: you’ll regain your equilibrium this week.

Brace yourself for what’s ahead, Virgo. This is going to be one of those weeks where you should stay home, alone, with the blinds closed.

It’s high time you take matters into your own hands and get things done, Capricorn. It’s important to rely on yourself for some things.

Gemini May 21–June 20

Libra September 23–October 23

Aquarius January 20–February 19

To find the answers that you’re looking for, Gemini, it’s paramount that you being by looking within yourself. It’s time for some introspection.

Irritation could be lurking around any corner this week, Libra. Try not to let it surprise you or get the better of you.

Questions, questions, questions — you’ll have a lot of them this week, Aquarius. Remember to be patient, though — there’ll be very few answers.

Cancer June 21–July 22

Scorpio October 24–November 22

Pisces February 20–March 20

This is not a week for some deep meditation, Cancer. Instead, get yourself out into the world and make use of your energy.

Don’t be afraid to air your grievances this week, Scorpio. Remember, if you keep that stuff bottled up, it can be destructive.

The worst thing you could do this week is have a lack of confidence in yourself, Pisces. That will get you nowhere.

sudoku 3 4 6 1 5 7 8 3 6 9 3 4 8 7 5 1 2 7 5 4 6 9 1 2 4 8 3 5 2 7 9 1 6 9 2 8

crossword answer key

A

7 3 4 8 9 7 3 1 6 2 4 8 2 4 5 3 9 1 6 7 5 8 4 6 5 7 9 8 1 6 3 1 9 5 2 2

B

19 Apr 11 – Apr 16 /verbregina

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Verb Issue R123 (Apr. 11-16, 2014)