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Issue #280 – March 7 to March 13

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lucas makowsky Skating at Sochi electric six Detroit rockers a St. Paddy’s Day staple 300: rise of an empire + the great beauty Films reviewed­ Photo: courtesy of the artist


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this week’s feature:

electric six

Back in SK for St. Paddy’s Day. 16 / cover Photo: courtesy of frank nash

NEWs + Opinion

dollars and sense

an olympic experience Lucas Makowsky talks Sochi 4 / Local

straker’s sudden fame SK songwriter wins big at international contest. 6 / Local

Our thoughts on a minimum annual income. 8 / Editorial

comments Here’s your say on nicotine-loaded e-cigarettes. 10 / comments

culture

Q + A with bass kleph On keeping up in an everchanging industry. 12 / Q + A

a sumptuous sequel

late night eats

Diana Panton’s story continues.

We visit Meg’s.

14 / Arts

18 / Food + Drink

working against entertainment Jason Schwebel’s masterful exhibit.

music The Mohrs, Steve Dawson + Neko Case. 19 / music

15 / Arts

entertainment

live music listings Local music listings for March 7 through March 15. 20 / listings

300: rise of an empire + the great beauty

on the bus Weekly original comic illustrations by Elaine M. Will. 30 / comics

We review the latest movies 22 / Film

Nightlife Photos

Games + Horoscopes

We visit Bon Temps + Diva’s.

Canadian criss-cross puzzle, horoscopes, and Sudoku. 31 / timeout

25 / Nightlife

verbnews.com @verbsaskatoon facebook.com/verbsaskatoon

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Publisher / Parity Publishing Editor in Chief / Ryan Allan Managing Editor / Jessica Patrucco staff Writers / Adam Hawboldt + Alex J MacPherson

Design Lead / andrew yanko graphic Designer / Bryce Kirk Contributing Photographers / Patrick Carley, Adam Hawboldt + Ishtiaq Opal

Office Manager / Stephanie Lipsit account Manager / nathan holowaty sales Manager / Vogeson Paley Financial Manager / Cody Lang

Comments / feedback@verbnews.com / 306 881 8372 advertise / advertise@verbnews.com / 306 979 2253 design / layout@verbnews.com / 306 979 8474 General / info@verbnews.com /

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Photo: Courtesy of facebook

An Olympic Experience

Regina’s Lucas Makowsky on Sochi, the Olympic Village, racing and more by ADAM HAWBOLDT

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ucas Makowsky had heard the rumours. He’d seen media reports about the Olympic Village in Sochi — about the lacklustre sleeping accommodations, about the looming security issues, about the side-by-side toilets without stalls and about the dilapidated state of the buildings. He’d heard about all this, but he didn’t give it much thought. In the days leading up to the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi, the gold-medal-winning speed skater from Regina was in Germany, training and getting acclimatized to the time change. Sure, the reports about the Olympic Village lingered in the back of his mind, but Makowsky wasn’t worried. “When you go to a different country, you have to expect the conditions will be a little bit different than what we have in North America,” he says. “I’ve always tried to keep an open mind when it comes to different cultures and architecture and styles of accom-

modation. If you don’t have the expectation that everything is going to be the way it is in North America, then you won’t be disappointed or shocked. You’re going to get there and just go with the flow, make the best of the situation.” At the end of the day, Makowsky knew he was going to Sochi to compete. He knew that any distracting energy or pessimistic thoughts would negatively affect his performance, so he kept a clear, open mind as his speed skating team — along with the short-track team and the women’s hockey team — boarded a plane in Vienna destined for Russia. When he arrived in Sochi, Makowsky was pleasantly surprised with what he saw. “When we first walked into the Village, I was laughing [at the media reports],” Makowsky says, just days after returning from Sochi. “It was pretty much like what we had in Vancouver. There were all these brand new condos that were going to be sold after the games. There was absolutely nothing wrong with

the accommodations. In fact, they exceeded expectation.” With the media reports debunked, Makowsky began to settle in and got ready to compete.

“For three or four days after we got there, it was just go, go, go. Non-stop, around the clock,” says Makowsky. The twice-a-day training followed by treatments and recovery were enough to keep Makowsky busy. But in those first few days, there were other things that needed to be done: uniforms needed to be fitted, Canadian gear needed to be picked up. Then there were orientation sessions and a bunch of other little events that were added to the days in order to help the athletes prepare for what to expect in the Village. Amidst all this hustle and bustle, Makowsky did what he had to do to keep himself centred and focused. “You can easily get distracted by everything that’s going on around you,” he explains. “So for those first three or four days, I made sure to find Continued on next page »

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some quiet time for myself. Time to decompress from the day and focus on what I was there to do.” Soon life in the Olympic Village took on a steady, calming pattern. Makowsky would wake up early in the morning. Some days he’d make the 15-minute walk to the cafeteria for breakfast, but more often than not, he’d just walk to the building next to where he was staying and grab some cereal or fruit to eat in Canada’s athletes’ lounge. Then it was off to morning training “to get the body going,” he says. Then lunch. Then more training. Then perhaps a treatment followed by supper followed by some time spent in the athletes’ lounge watching the Games on television. For the next week and a half in Sochi that pattern set the rhythm for Makowsky’s life, with few deviations. Sometimes he’d go for stationary bike rides on the balcony, wearing nothing more than a pair of bicycling shorts, with the warm February sun shining down. Other times he’d skip the bike ride and eat breakfast out on the balcony, where he’d watch dolphins jumping in the Black Sea as security blimps floated over top the Village. And all the while, the day he’d have to compete kept inching closer and closer.

Lucas Makowsky’s first event at the 2014 Winter Olympics was the 1,500m. And heading into the race, the

Saskatchewanian felt he had made some pretty good progress in training. “It was a pretty tough year for me, as far as technique goes,” says Makowsky. “I spent a lot of the year trying to recapture it, to get my technique back. It wasn’t until a week before the race that I started to feel I was getting to the point where I wanted to be at.” In that respect, Makowsky was pleased, happy that he was finally finding his stride in time for the 1,500m. But come race day he wasn’t able to put it all together and ended up finishing 28th — a nineplace decrease from his 19th-place finish in Vancouver. “Obviously, the competitive side of me wished I’d been at a bit higher level going into that race,” admits Mankowsky. “But at the same time, that race was one of the best I’d had all year. I can’t complain. That’s just the reality of sport: if you’re not there, at a specific level at a very specific point in time, the results will reflect that.” Speaking of reflection, Mankowsky didn’t have much time to think on his showing in the 1,500m, because in less than a week he and two other skaters — Denny Morrison and Mathieu Giroux — were slated to compete in the longtrack team pursuit. “Regardless of how I did in the 1,500m, there’s a completely different approach, a completely different dynamic, when it comes to training for the team pursuit,” explains Makowsky. “It’s not all

just on you. It’s a team effort to get all three guys across the line, as quickly as possible.” An effort, they hoped, that would duplicate the gold-medal winning performance the trio had put forth in the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. The race started out well, with the Canadian team defeating the U.S. skaters in the quarterfinals. In the semifinals, though, they came up 2.96 seconds short against the South Koreans, and had to settle for a bronze medal showdown against Poland. “Going into that race, the goal was to make it to the podium again,” says Makowsky. “We had the plan we wanted to execute, a strategy that we put together to use everybody’s strengths.” A strategy that would see Dennis Morrison — “the strongest when it comes to acceleration,” according to Makowsky — go first, use his speed and set the pace. They knew the Polish would be skating a flatter

profile, so the aim for Makowsky and his teammates was to jump out to an early lead, build a head of steam and try to minimize the die at the end of the race. In the beginning, the trio executed the plan to perfection, and Canada held the lead for the first six laps. But down the stretch they began to fade, the Polish began to pick up steam, and the end result was a fourth-place finish for Canada. And while the result was understandably disappointing, Makowsky still looks back on the 2014 Games with a warm sort of fondness. “It was incredible,” he

says. “The whole atmosphere at the Games. Being on the Black Sea. The cluster in the Village, everything being right there. The weather. It’s not the kind of atmosphere you expect a Winter Olympics to have.” And certainly not the kind of atmosphere Makowsky had heard about through the media in the days and weeks leading up to the Games, either. Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

@VerbSaskatoon ahawboldt@verbnews.com

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Photo: Courtesy of Christian Hidalgo Continued on next page Âť

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Straker’s sudden fame

Regina’s Jeffery Straker wins prestigious international song competition in Chile by ADAM HAWBOLDT

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effery Straker is standing in one of the wings of the Quinta Vergara Amphitheatre, located on Chile’s temperate west coast. He’s been standing there, with other competitors at the Viña del Mar International Song Festival, for about an hour. Earlier in the day, Straker woke up early. He went for a run on the beach, rehearsed the song he’s about to sing, and then took a nap — something he never does. About three hours before the festival’s final competition, he arrived at the open-air amphitheatre to prepare for tonight’s show. A show that will be performed in front of 20,000 screaming fans. A show that will be broadcast on television to millions of homes around the Spanishspeaking world. For a production of this magnitude, you don’t simply show up and walk on stage. There’s make-up that needs to be applied, hair to be done, costumes to be put on. Once Straker is finished all this, the organizers of the event rustle up the competitors and usher them backstage to wait in the wings. And so there’s Straker. Standing in line. Waiting. “When you’re back there for that long, it really gives you time to think,” says Straker. “And when you have time like that, you start asking yourself dumb questions. You start wondering ‘Have I forgotten the lyrics?’ and “Do I remember all the dance moves?’ Really dumb questions like that.” As Straker is asking himself these things, one of the competitors finishes a song. The audience, nicknamed “El Monstruo” (The Monster) by the Chilean media, roars its approval. They seem like they’re in a good mood, which is a good thing because El Monstruo has a tradition of booing people off stage if they’re not pleased with a performance. Another competitor, this guy from Romania, turns to Straker and says, “It

is really weird, but I have no emotions right now.” Neither does Straker. He just wants to get out there and put on a show.

The Viña del Mar International Song Festival began in 1960 and is considered one of the most important music festivals in the Americas. People come from all over the world to attend. Some drive in and get day passes, others stay for the entire event. The atmosphere around Viña del Mar, a city of about 300,000 people, is electric. The streets are bustling with people, everyone from visitors taking pictures of 19th century buildings that have survived numerous earthquakes to buskers juggling knives in intersections. Gaiety and good will float in the warm winter air. Regina’s Jeffery Straker has been here since the festival started. Staying in a hotel overlooking the Pacific Ocean, his days have been filled with good food, great red wine, excellent dark beer, interviews and rehearsals. A lot of rehearsals. “We rehearsed to death,” says Straker. “There were rehearsals every day for everyone in the competition.” Which is a good thing. See, if you’ve ever watched Straker perform, he’s usually seated at a piano, tickling the ivories with exuberance and passion. But here at the festival, things are a little different. “When I first arrived, the festival’s choreographer said, ‘Here’s the choreography we’re recommending for your song.’ And my first thought was: oh my god! They want me to dance,” says Straker. Dancing isn’t something Straker does, and he told them that. The choreographer then explained to Straker that in Latin America things are different. If you can do something big and spectacular, you can really win people over. “In that moment I was terrified,” admits Straker. “But I subscribe to the idea that if something scares you, you

should probably do it. Your comfort zone can be your own worst enemy. So I said, ‘to heck with it,’ and did what they wanted.” Endless rehearsals and two performances later, Straker found himself in the finals competing for the top prize.

On stage, Jeffery Straker is seated at a piano. He’s dressed in red pants, white button-up shirt, a black vest and a black tie. He’s surrounded by dancers, who are crouched down in a circle around him. The first few notes of his song “Hypnotized” waft through the amphitheatre. When it’s time for him to sing the lyrics, Straker grabs the mic and gets up from the piano. All around him, the dancers are doing their choreographed dance. Straker is gliding about the stage, singing and moving with the flow of the music. One look, and you can tell he’s having fun up there. When he’s finished El Monstruo erupts with cheers. A while later, Straker is back up on stage with the other competitors of the festival, waiting to see who won. When he’s announced as the winner of the international category, a wave of relief washes over him. “When they said my name, I felt my whole body relax. Thank god the tension was finally gone,” says Straker. “The two hosts called me up and the mayor [of Viña del Mar] presented me the trophy.” He chuckles and says, “I hugged her so hard! If you look at some of the pictures, she looks terrified.” It wasn’t just a trophy that Straker received, either. He was also awarded $50,000 for the win (which he plans to use to make a new record this summer), and opened up a new touring market for himself. “Immediately after the win, there were booking interests for Mexico, Chile and Peru,” says Straker. “It was all kinds of surreal. I mean, on my way home we travelled two hours

inland to visit Santiago … we were walking around the streets and people were coming up and congratulating me. It was bizarre. Then at the airport check-in counter I actually got swarmed by people with cameras wanting to take pictures.” The new-found attention didn’t end there. When Straker got on the plane to come home, the lady sitting next to him turned and said, “Oh my god! It’s you.” But now that the surreal whirlwind of his win is over Straker is back in Saskatchewan, and the magnitude of what happened at the Viña del Mar festival — and what it means for his future as a musician — is slowly sinking in. Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

@VerbSaskatoon ahawboldt@verbnews.com

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Dollars and sense If we want to help people, stop increasing minimum wage and implement a minimum annual income

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eems like everywhere you look lately, people are talking about minimum wage. More specifically, about raising minimum wage. Down south, in the good ol’ U.S. of A., more than 30 states are considering it. A few months ago, Ontario upped their minimum wage to $11 per hour. And chances are other provinces are contemplating a similar move. Raising minimum wage is often touted as a way to help bring workers above the poverty line, and a means of providing a greater financial buffer to separate those who depend on low-income jobs from utter destitution. And while we are all for helping out people in our community who need it, we don’t think this is the way to do it. Which is why we are suggesting that the federal government institute a minimum income instead. There’s a subtle difference, but one that we think will have a truly positive impact. So why are we against simply jacking up minimum wage? Well, for a whole host of reasons. Increase after increase has demonstrated that people who rely on those lower paying jobs are still struggling to get by. Some of this is because, from a business standpoint, increasing minimum wage can be devastating for an employer. Consider this: if everything remains constant in your business but the price of labour per hour increases, certain things are bound to fall by the wayside. The

number of hours of labour will have to decrease in order for your business to maintain the status quo. This means either eliminating jobs or giving employees fewer hours. When the minimum wage is increased this happens time and time again. And time and time again it’s the vulnerable people on the margins who take it on the chin. Implementing a minimum income, on the other hand, provides relief for those who need it without sacrificing job security. Sure, this approach is opposed to our government’s typical paternal reaction to lower income people, but such a move has already been the subject of a few pilot projects, and has had enough success that’s it’s worth considering seriously. One such project took place in Dauphin, Manitoba in the 1970s. Forty-odd-years ago, the Canadian government conducted an experiment of sorts by giving every household in Dauphin (subject to income level, of course) a guaranteed annual budget of about $18,000 in today’s dollars. The aim of the government’s experiment was to see if, given an influx of money like this, people would stop working. They didn’t. In fact, all of the stereotypical fears that a free handout would lead to laziness, drinking, or worse were debunked. Overall working hours barely changed, people stayed in school longer, crime rates dropped, and health care costs plummeted. Seems like it worked to us.

Overseas, an similar experiment in Britain gave a group of people who had been living on the streets for more than five years a budget that they could spend on whatever they want. The idea was to see if a no-stringsattached handout would work for the extreme poor. The results were fairly positive, with nine of the 15 participants (working with counsellors) moving to some form of housing, and most spending far less than the amount given to them on basic necessities like food, clothing and rent. The cost of a guaranteed annual income program would be expensive. But if it alleviates the stress on our currently overburdened corrections system and inefficient welfare system, then shouldn’t we at least entertain the idea? Why not roll it out on a small scale in a few communities across the country, and expand it from there. Doing so would stop the cyclical absurdity known as the minimum wage increase and, most importantly, would provide a social safety net and a way to improve the lives of people who work hard, yet still can’t eke out a living. 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 the ban on nicotine-loaded e-cigarettes. Here’s what you had to say: – E-cigarettes: The anti-smoking extremists NEED to back off a bit and think of the withdrawl symptoms and today’s stress levels Truth Is Power-Try It

– Doesn’t surprise me ew can’t have nicotine e cigs with the power of the tobacco lobby. It’s in their best interest to prevent people from seeking help. Such a sick world.

– How can nicotine patches be legel than if e cigs aren’t? Doesn’t

else. Stand up to those who oppose a useful treatment like nicotine e-cigarattes. It’s mind boggling that we cowtow to bullies who want to make a buck off us. Disgusting!

– E cigs seem like they could be helpful therapy for those who want to quit. I say bring them in!

text yo thoughtsur to 881 ve r b 8372

– Pretty sure most people just order their e-cigarettes online so it’s not really a big deal. You can get vapour here if you need it. Kind of sketchy sometimes what’s in it, but can’t be worse than cigs

make much sense to me.

– If you don’t see that the tabacco industry is the one behind the e cig ban plz wake up or just come out and say it in an article

– Shame on Verb for promoting smoking. It’s a vile habit and terrible for your health. We need to stop pretending that smoking is fine and help people help themselves. Cancer and more are very real possibilities if you smoke, and it’s a habit that is so addictive (and targeted at young people). We shouldn’t be promoting ways for them to stop smoking before we promote ways for them not to start in the first place. Just what I think.

– Why would anyone want to quit smoking all the COOL kids are doing it lol

– E cigs are great! I still smoke sometime but use mine pretty frequently. Plus you can puff indoors because it’s just steam!

– The amount of money spent by big Tobacco to keep people hooked on their products would be astonishing to see. I’m sure they are putting pressure on the government organizations to keep this ban in place. Sad.

– Patches are allowed then e cigs should be to. Not sure why they aren’t.

– We should be putting the health of Canadians above everything

– Smoking is a gross habit and we should do whatever we can to help people stop it be it e cigs or whatever.

OFF TOPIC – Would also like to thank Ave for speaking up about Wicca and our beliefs. A very spiritual and nature-guided set of rules to live life by. There’s room for all forms of belief, so don’t disparage what you don’t know or understand.

– To the texter that talked about the order that streets are snowplowed, not every street can be plowed at the same time. There has to be a plan in place. Stop trying to make sense of the order. It has nothing to do with a “rich” neighbourhood. Taxes are collected from all across the city. We are all entitled to having snow removal done. Take time to read up on the city’s snow removal policy. I agree that it can be frustrating but please realize that there are many streets to look after. It is not so simple because notice has to be given for people to move their cars. If it snows heavily, that snow removal then has to be rescheduled and it starts with a priority 1 area again first. Cut the city some slack already.

– People always like to crap on the city without knowing all the facts. There is a system the city uses to plow the streets. You’ll be grateful if you have to go to the hospital and you’re able to get their quickly because the streets are clear.

– Winter: when everyone complains about the cold. Stop printing whiny texts Verb!

– When it’s so cold out even the snowmen are coming in to warm up, you know you’re in Canada!

In response to “The truth about witches,”

– To the hearty souls who suggest one stop discussing the record smashing cold .. Enjoy but I’m getting sick of triple touquing

Local, #272 (January 10, 2014)

sound off – I sometimes wonder what Voldemort would be like in real life

– I like Canada Geese they fly South Crap all the states or wher-

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ever they Arrow to and when they come back we know it’s spring

– When it’s so cold that even Jack Frost takes a holiday to Hawaii, you know you’re in Canada!

– Oh spring, oh spring, wherefore art thou?

– If one more person tells me “winter’s aren’t usually this bad,” I will lost it!

– Bilingualism can have hazards. Electric fixtures have connections labelled black-white and noirblanc. Confusing black and blanc in poor visibility is bad!

– DOWNtown people are texters just like you and me. If you have something to contribute, just text it in

– A mind is a terrible thing to taste!

people here whose loved ones are in Ukraine and area.

– Sweet as lye

– Be careful with hot buttery garlic bread. If it touches a hot burner or open flame it can burst into flame like an oily rag! Who knew? That was exciting!

– I saw Miley’s “Wrecking Ball” video. I thought “Holy Hannah Montana!”

– So glad 12 Years a Slave won at the Oscars :) It was a great movie, more so for the origin text it was based on.

– I am disgusted by the people who don’t want to change the Bedfor Road team name from Redmen. Just because something was done a certain way in the past doesn’t mean it’s better/not worthy of critical analysis/should be changed. Stop holding up “tradition” as this glorious thing to be protected. Good job to all those involved who are working to bring this change about. I trust the right thing will happen in the end.

Next week: What do you think about bringing in a minimum annual income? 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.

– Shovels snow like it’s my second full time job ;) – It’s destiny to fall in luv with u babe ur 1 in a million XOXO

– Slippery out there today folks be careful!

– Things are not looking good in Crimea my thoughts and prayers to the families affected and any

– I would like to see more things expressed solely in emoji rather than words. Much easier to understand! And more fun to.

– There are some wonderful people out there doing all they can for people/animals in need. They truly are heroes.

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Klephtomania Photos: courtesy of Robert Kerian

Rock drummer turned DJ Bass Kleph talks dance music, drumming, and dancing by Alex J MacPherson

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tuart Tyson spent his teenage years touring Australia and New Zealand, playing hectic rock shows with the band Loki. When the power trio finally broke up, the young musician from Sydney, Australia turned in his drum kit for a set of DJ decks and began making beats. Today, Bass Kleph has established himself both as a pioneer and an innovator. He is perhaps best known for incorporating live drumming — performed on a drum machine using his fingers — into his DJ sets. But Bass Kleph is also an outspoken champion of electronic music, a form that appears to be entering its second renaissance. Determined to take advantage of the possibilities offered by the internet, he has spent the last several years sharing his monstrous electro-house sounds

as well as those produced by his ever-expanding circle of collaborators with the widest audience possible. In addition to running a record label, he also produces a podcast, Klephtomania, dedicated to making more music available to more people. And by bridging the gap between his own past and present, Bass Kleph has positioned himself on the cutting edge of electronic music. But that doesn’t mean he has forgotten what it means to dance to a great beat — which is why he maintains a hectic (some would say frantic) touring schedule. I recently caught up with him to talk about live drumming, sharing music, and the exploding world of EDM. Alex J MacPherson: One thing people might not know about you is that you played in rock bands for

many years. How did that experience affect your subsequent career in electronic music? Bass Kleph: A bunch. I mean, even initially coming from playing drums made things like learning how to DJ a lot easier. I had a friend who was a DJ teaching me how to beat-match and because of all the rhythm training from being a drummer I picked that up in, I don’t know, half an hour. Like, okay, what’s next? It helps a lot with production, too. So much of what you’re writing is about the beats. It’s what drew me into it. Drums is my life and the first time I heard great dance music with big powerful drum beats I was like, wow, this music’s all about me, it’s my instrument, I need to know more about this, I need to learn how to write it, I need to go and buy as many Continued on next page »

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of these as I can and share them with everybody. That sucked me in and helped keep me there, and it continues to as well. AJM: It occurs to me that the purpose of rock music is not all that different from the purpose of electronic music. BK: A hundred percent, yeah. I’d say the purpose of music is to feel something, and entertainment is just one of those feelings, to feel an emotion. It feels likes it’s a great conduit or medium to transmit emotion, maybe even more so than the spoken word. You can play somebody a certain piece of music and they instantly feel something. If the music’s done right, they’ll feel exactly what the writer intended them to feel. What I’ve been mostly writing, and a lot of the rock you’re talking about too, is more feelgood stuff that makes people happy and have fun and want to party and dance and have a great time. AJM: You’re also well known for incorporating live drumming, using the finger pad, into your DJ sets. Is it about bringing that rock past into the present? BK: Yeah, exactly. That’s why I like it, for that very reason. I felt like it was tying together my past and my present; it let me bring everything I

see that sort of thing and we really like it.’ I’ve never had anybody say, ‘no, we didn’t like that, you should just stop doing it.’ I think more and more people are popping up and trying new things. There’s more options available now because of the technology that’s out there, and people are getting more creative, too. It’s great to see. I don’t think you have to do it, but I like it — I definitely appreciate it when I see the DJ do something different that I haven’t seen before. AJM: Which speaks to the shifting landscape of electronic music. It really feels like anything is possible right now, probably because the technology is so easy to acquire. BK: Oh absolutely, it’s so exciting. It’s already changed so much compared to when I started. Like, it was all on vinyl and you had to buy records and they were a physical thing. Now, because of the internet, we can get our music that we’ve written to so many more people around the world. It’s exploded scenes all over the place and inspired people everywhere. And the fact that the technology’s cheaper — all you really need is a home computer and there’s a bunch of free software on the internet, legal free software or cheap software you can buy — means there’s kids writing amazing dance music all

…if you don’t evolve with … the way things are going you can get left behind… bass kleph

learned about drums back into my performance as a DJ, and combine it with everything I’ve learned about sound design and music production. AJM: Speaking broadly, how important is it for DJs and producers to incorporate live sounds into their performances? BK: I don’t know. It might not be that important, because a lot of people don’t do it, but I know it’s appreciated. I know when I do do it, people are like, ‘wow, we didn’t expect that’ or ‘wow, that’s something different, we never

around the world. Someone told me it’s almost like it’s becoming the new folk music. You used to go home, you might have a day job, and after work you enjoy playing a little bit of acoustic guitar — not because it’s your job, just because you like it. People do this with dance music now. They go home and they mess around, write beats, have fun, and they might have a house party on the weekend and go, ‘hey man, I might DJ at my house party.’ It’s the people’s music now.

to as many people as possible, whether through Klephtomania, your podcast, or your record labels. BK: That was my first goal when I started getting into this. I heard the music like I said and it grabbed me completely and I thought it was amazing and I was just compelled to want to play it to everybody. I would have been that annoying kid at school going, you’ve got to hear this, I’ve got to play this to you. I guess that’s always been in me ever since, that the most important thing is to get it out there. I want people to hear it. It’s fine if they don’t like it, sure, but I want to at least give them the opportunity to hear it — as many people as possible. AJM: It’s great that the EDM world is so dynamic, but I’m curious: why do you think you’ve been able to survive and flourish in an industry that is both extremely fickle and always in motion? BK: You mean what gives it longevity? I guess it’s got to be unique for that. I mean, not all my stuff would be but there would definitely be some stuff in there. The thing that keeps me around doing it would be evolving for sure. That’s something I sort of learned early on, if you don’t evolve with the movements and the way things are going you can get left behind, unfortunately, so it’s important to keep on your toes, keep learning all the time, and keep trying new things, and let the music take you. That ties in, because if you are doing those things you’ll end up writing music that’s a bit more experimental, at least a little bit here and there, and hopefully one or two of those tracks will grab people enough where they’re like, that was a pivotal point in time for us. That gives it the longevity, where it’s like, that was a time when everybody started changing their sound like this or when we all went to those sorts of parties. Bass Kleph March 15 @ O’Brians Event Centre $TBA

Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

AJM: You seem very interested in exploring ways of getting your music out

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A sumptuous sequel

Photos: courtesy of Jose Crespo

Diana Panton’s Red continues a story she started telling five years ago by Alex J MacPherson

I

n 2009, Diana Panton released her third collection of jazz standards, Pink. Recorded with longtime collaborators Don Thompson and Reg Schwager, Pink folded some of the finest songs about hopefulness, anticipation, and shy glances ever written into a moving story of young love. Last year Panton, who is one of the most distinctive and talented jazz singers in the country, decided to record its sequel. Red emerged from the group’s Toronto studio as a potent antidote to its wistful predecessor. Whereas Pink is airy and bright and breezy, Red simmers with passion and boils over with intensity. “My reason for recording Pink was essentially that there were a lot of songs that were fitting to that theme that I thought needed to be sung at a certain point in life,” Panton says. “I may have revised that since, but at the time I thought I don’t want to be trying to sing these when I’m an older person.” That was in 2009. By

2012, Panton felt comfortable singing an entirely different variety of standards. “There’s one song in particular — it’s quite a mature and intense lyric — that I first heard when I was seventeen or eighteen and at the time I was like, I’m going to sing that song,” she says. “But I knew it wouldn’t have been appropriate for me to sing it at that age.” That song is “The Island,” which was written by Ivan Lins and in Panton’s capable hands smoulders like an ember in a cast iron stove, red hot at midnight and still alive the morning after. When Panton, Thompson, and Schwager were recording Pink, they opted to bring in Guido Basso, whose playing Panton describes as “cheeky and a little bit fresh.” She says she wanted him to accentuate and reflect the colour theme of the record. When it came to cutting Red, the trio chose saxophonist Phil Dwyer to add his rich colours to the mix. “[We needed] somebody who could really emote in a genuine way without it becoming overly dramatic,” Panton explains. “It was

certainly what I meant by pure emotion; it was what I was hoping we might strive for.” Red also benefits from subtle harp and string quartet lines, but the twin centerpieces are the production itself and Panton’s exquisite voice — nuanced, rich, and capable

playing since 2005. “It just felt right,” she says of their first session together as a trio. “And working together over time, when you travel and do things like that, it just gets better. I don’t honestly ever have to think too much. My job is just to feel. That’s what I feel like when I’m up there.”

I don’t honestly ever have to think too much. My job is just to feel. That’s what I feel like when I’m up there. diana panton

of extraordinarily moving dynamic shifts. Panton attributes the album’s expansive sound, its freedom to flow across the sonic spectrum, to the engineer, Chad Irschick: “To say that he’s very good at what he does would be an understatement.” She also gives credit to Thompson and Schwager, with whom she has been

That feeling manifests as one of the most evocative voices anywhere in the country. Panton sang the tracks that make up Red — a collection of standards including tunes by Cole Porter and George and Ira Gershwin, as well as an original song she wrote with Thompson — with the slow-burning intensity of

an experienced lover, drawing out each note with the knowledge that the seconds can easily become days and weeks and years. And when she sings quietly, she leaves the impression that the only thing left is raw, unalloyed emotion. Which is exactly where she wants to be. Music is equal parts thinking and feeling, calculation and intuition. But Panton is at her best when the stage drops away beneath her, leaving nothing but the music and the emotion. “It’s the only side I want to be on,” she says with a gentle laugh. “I tell [the musicians] I don’t want to think. That’s not the part of music I enjoy. It’s the other part I enjoy.” Red March 15 @ The Bassment $30/40 @ Showclix.com, the Bassment

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Working against entertainment

Photos: courtesy of google street view

Josh Schwebel’s iconoclastic installation [Caché] challenges the way we interact with art by Alex J MacPherson

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oshua Schwebel has dedicated his art practice to working against what he calls the “entertainment model” of making and viewing art. He is disturbed by overly mediated and constructed interactions with art, encounters that are prescribed long before the viewer actually sees an exhibition. Schwebel wants to upend the notion that art is whatever happens to be in a gallery and promoted as art. In other words, he wants to create experiences without expectations. “I tend to work outside of the gallery, in public interventions and in situations that aren’t so framed,” he says from his home in Montreal. “The way that mediation sets up expectations for an encounter really affects the encounter itself. I don’t try to control or to determine the encounter with the work.” Schwebel has spent the last several years subverting the notion that art is the product of formal exchanges between artists, galleries, and viewers — exchanges to no small degree defined by the declaration “this is

art.” For his 2008 MFA thesis, he used forged documents to convince his colleagues that he had spent weeks building an enormous sculpture in the woods. When he produced an empty gallery, it became clear that his project consisted not of a huge sculpture, but a performance and the documentation

what goes unsaid is as important as what is said. Schwebel conceived the project in 2011, while he was completing a residency in Paris, France. [Caché] was developed in three distinct stages. Schwebel wanted to question how viewers relate to, and expect to relate

I’m really not interested in putting more sh*t in galleries. I’m interested in what we expect to see… josh schwebel

of that performance. In 2012, he impersonated the well-known Toronto artist Micah Lexier and secured an exhibition at a Montreal artist-run centre. He submitted a sub-par body of work to see if reputation and expectation could trump quality. (It did; the centre displayed the work.) [Caché], one of his more recent projects, operates on the same basic principle — the notion that

to, artwork, and he discovered an exhibition that explored relations not through presence, but through absence. He then spent days inserting himself into the show by standing motionless before a video installation, secretly recording the looped video. “I was making a copy of this endless repetition,” he says, “but in copying it over and over again, because the

camera was on my body and because my body was incapable of repeating as a machine, perfectly, the video I recorded transformed this mechanical loop into something that changed every time.” The second stage is even more complicated. After transferring countless hours of looped video onto a series of VHS tapes, Schwebel began delivering the tapes to the house at 49 rue BrillatSavarin — the same house featured in Michael Haneke’s 2005 psycho-thriller Caché. “The film also deals with this idea of absence,” he says. “It deals with this idea of absence of repression, of guilt, of things we can’t deal with. With this idea of how, in order for a bourgeois middle-class society to carry on, it needs to sort of forget the violence that it continuously enacts on people who can’t attain that status.” Haneke’s film opens with apparent surveillance footage of the house in question, unmarked packages containing VHS tapes sent to the quiet family living within. These tapes are mysterious, yet they unlock memories buried deep beneath an avalanche of solidly middle-class concerns — memories of

colonialism, of violence, and of death. The third stage of the exhibition is a documentation of a documentation of a document. In other words, Schwebel constructed the installation not as a record of what happened when he began delivering videotapes to the house, but as a series of objects that reference the previous two stages. Besides dismantling the assumption that art, like narrative, must have a tidy structure with a beginning, a middle, and an end, [Caché] compels viewers to engage not with a physical presence in the gallery, but with an absence of one. “The gallery’s not empty, but it’s very, very sparse,” he says. “That’s because I’m really not interested in putting more sh*t in galleries. I’m interested in what we expect to see and how to challenge those expectations.” [Caché] March 14 through April 19 @ AKA Gallery Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

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Feature

Five In A Row

Photo: courtesy of Frank nash

Electric Six bring their latest album to Saskatchewan for a fifth annual St Patrick’s Day orgy of rock and absurdity by Alex J MacPherson

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yler Spencer is not entirely sure why he and the rest of Electric Six have spent the last four St. Patrick’s Days in Saskatchewan. But that hasn’t stopped the band from making the long trek north to play for capacity crowds eager to party until morning. And at this point, Spencer is reluctant to question what has become one of the stranger traditions in rock and roll. “There are certain things I’m weirdly proud of in this band, and that I’m about to play my fifth straight St. Patrick’s Day in Saskatchewan is one of them,” Spencer, who is better known by his stage name, Dick Valentine, says with a laugh. “I didn’t ever think I’d go to Saskatchewan in the first place, you know? Even though I grew up near Canada, Saskatchewan was like an other-worldly part of Canada. I mean, there are probably people in Saskatchewan who haven’t celebrated five St. Patrick’s Days there. It’s bizarre.” Electric Six was formed as the Wildbunch in Detroit, Michigan in the late 1990s. In 2003, the band changed its name and released Fire, which produced the singles “Gay Bar” and “Danger! High Voltage!” Although Electric Six has never achieved the same degree of commercial or critical success as other acts to emerge from Detroit — a roster that included the

White Stripes, Kid Rock, and Insane Clown Posse — Spencer and his bandmates have spent ten years building a following the old-fashioned way: by releasing solid records and touring relentlessly. The band’s latest offering, 2013’s Mustang, marks a return to rock and roll basics after several years of musical experimentation. “What we always do is try not to duplicate the last record we just made,” Spencer says, referring to 2011’s Heartbeats and Brainwaves, which was constructed using synthesizers and drum machines rather than the usual arsenal of electric guitars, and 2012’s

and feature our awesome drummer a lot more. That was kind of the game plan going in.” Mustang declares its intentions in the first few seconds of the opening track, a two-minute barrage of overdriven guitars and grungy breakdowns titled “Nom de Plume.” Packed with irresistible hooks and saturated with the band’s feverish blend of cynicism and profundity, Mustang demonstrates that ten long years on the road have not dulled Electric Six’s capacity for producing engaging rock records. In fact, it might be the strongest album of their career — a significant achieve-

…it’d be more fun to write about the people … that have f**ked you over. But I just try not to go there. tyler spencer

Absolute Pleasure, a live record that was financed by the crowd-funding platform Kickstarter and condensed ten years of hard work into sixty minutes of grinding, propulsive, and snarky rock and roll. “If you look at Heartbeats, we’d done a synthesizer record with drum machines, so we definitely wanted to add more guitars

ment, considering it was written and recorded during a period of great distraction. “I just had a baby, or rather my wife did, so I wasn’t really as focused on recording this time around,” Spencer says after admitting that he “kind of phoned it in” when it came to writing songs. “I just came with some basic sketches. Mustang is really [guitarist Continued on next page »

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and producer] John [Nash] and some of the other guys picking up the slack.” According to Nash, whose stage name is Johnny Na$hinal, Mustang was produced by slowly layering tracks on top of skeletal demos and song sketches. “It’s kind of a group thing, so everyone will have their favourite sounds they like to hear, and we try and get everything in there without being too cluttered,” he says of the process that transformed basic song ideas into fully-realized rock tracks. “That’s my big fear: it’s real easy in the modern digital age to add way too much stuff. That’s what I’m finding now, that when I’m mixing it’s not so much about the balance as it is about which things to keep and which to get rid of. So because of that we try to make a sleek product, something we don’t over-analyze too much, but there’s a lot of stuff there, a lot of material to wade through.” The upshot of this balancing act is that even the most straightforward tracks on Mustang contain sonic novelties and amusements, moments captured during the recording process that were too good to discard. In addition to the sound of Spencer’s daughter crying (“it’s our family record,” Nash says) and several musical references to Slayer, the record also contains a bastardized version of the “Gay Bar” riff, played on a twelvestring and spliced into the summery pop anthem “Miss Peaches Wears an Iron Dress.” The most unusual sound on Mustang is the gang vocal coda of “Iron Dragon,” the album’s sprawl-

Photo: courtesy of frank nash

ing centrepiece. Electric Six makes a point of playing in Russia each year — it’s another thing Spencer is weirdly proud of — and they recorded the rousing finale, a tribute to Michael Jackson and the power of music, in the middle of Red Square. “That’s as uplifting as you can get, being American and singing an outro to a song in

Red Square,” Spencer says. Spencer conceived “Iron Dragon” as a titanic Nick Cave-style ballad, a soaring counterpoint to the more aggressive rock cuts that litter the album. It is also one of the strangest songs Electric Six have ever recorded, a piano- and vocal-driven power ballad about — well, even Spencer isn’t sure. “Lyrically, it’s bizarre,” he says with a laugh. “I don’t know who the protagonist is, I don’t know what he’s doing, why he’s been in exile. I don’t know about his relationship with whoever lives in the fortress he’s trying to get into; I don’t know if it’s homoerotic or not. There are a lot of questions and I think the song does a good job of not answering them.” This is not uncharacteristic of most Electric Six songs, which Spencer insists are a product of his imagination rather than thinly veiled references to specific experiences or relationships. “I mean, it’d be more fun to write about the people you don’t like or the people that have f**ked you over. But I just try not to go there. So that leaves you with you have to invent stuff.” (The one exception to this rule on Mustang is “Adam Levine,” a deeply cynical take on prepackaged pop that encourages everybody to give the Maroon Five singer money before condemning him to an eternity in hell.) The songs that make up Mustang are some of the strongest Electric Six have ever recorded. “Show Me What Your Lights Mean” is a grimy sciencefiction sex show, “The New Shampoo” a funky disco-infused ode to selftransformation. “Skin Traps” reveals the band’s fondness for eighties metal while telling a bizarre story of attraction, lust, and gullibility. The best track on the album, “Miss Peaches Wears An Iron Dress,” is an uplifting anthem that pairs a vaguely surrealistic story of loss, confusion, and redemption with a brittle synthesizer lick and a driving drumbeat. Mustang is, broadly speaking, a rock record, but it covers a lot of sonic territory, from towering power ballads to fractious proto-metal and gritty rock, each stamped with the band’s distinctive combination of grandiosity and absurdity. According to Nash, the musical and lyrical diversity of Mustang is to no small degree a product of the band’s relationship with its label, Metropolis Records. “At this point, I think it would be a crime for us to not exercise the

flexibility that Metropolis gives us for records,” he says. “We could do a jazz record and they would be cool with it. We get along great as people, have a great relationship with them, and they love the music. Not to be overly pessimistic, but they know that it’s not very likely that we have another big hit album coming out, so they just want us to make a record that we like and have fun with and not really worry about trying to get it to fit into a certain thing.” Spencer, meanwhile, likes to think of Mustang as a straightforward rock album — the product of ten years of hard work. “At the end of the day, it’s not far off from a Pixies record or a Pavement record, which is kind of what I was listening to before Fire, you know? I don’t know if it’s a sign of any evolution per se. I just think we’ve got the right people and gotten good at writing a good pop-rock record.” And while both Spencer and Nash agree that the band’s frantic pace has slowed somewhat over the last several years, both men are looking forward to taking Mustang on the road. The band has imposed a standing rule that tours do not run past three weeks, rather than the seven of years past, but that won’t stop Electric Six from playing the traditional St. Patrick’s Day show in Saskatchewan. Or starting to work on a new record, for that matter. “I

think it’ll be a marriage of Heartbeats and Mustang, to tell you the truth,” Spencer says of the band’s next record, the sessions for which were underway last month. But whatever the Detroit rockers come up with next, fans can be sure that it will be equal parts engaging, unusual, and deeply compelling. “It’s not as daunting as it used to seem,” Spencer says of the recording process. “You don’t really fear the future. I look at doing a new record now as no matter what it’s going to be good — you

just don’t know what kind of good it’s going to be.” Electric Six March 16 @ Amigos $15 @ Ticketedge.ca

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Late night eats

Photo: courtesy of adam hawboldt

Meg’s Restaurant, and the Dino Burger by adam hawboldt

O

kay, so here’s the thing: I’ve never gone to Meg’s Restaurant sober. Not once in, oh, say, the dozen or so times I’ve been there. A fixture of the downtown, latenight scene, Meg’s — at least for me — is the kind place I love to go

same way you love them, time and time again. The menu at Meg’s boasts a variety of hearty eats that perfectly soothes that late-night-snack-attack impulse. There are appetizers like dry ribs, chicken wings, and mozza sticks. Meg’s also offers sandwiches (I once had the toasted Denver, which was pretty great), burgers, pasta, wraps, quesadillas, salads, fried chicken, battered fish, pizza — you name it. There’s also a whole slew of Indian dishes available, if you’re craving something a little different than your typical late-night fare. And when I hit up Meg’s, that’s usually the part of the menu I gravitate towards. Of all the nights I’ve eaten there, I figure nearly 90% of the time I had the exact same thing — butter chicken, garlic naan, and a samosa. That’s my old faithful. And it’s pretty good, let me tell you — between the three items, there’s the ideal mixture of sweet, spicy and savoury that I’ve just got to have.

after a long night of carousing. The kind of place you visit when your evening out is winding down, and you are in dire need of some grub. Meg’s is a cozy, unassuming restaurant on 3rd Avenue North. the kind of place you can walk in to and those staple items you love, the

let’s go drinkin’ Verb’s mixology guide OLD-FASHIONED

Ingredients

If you’re out on the town this week and want to have an old school drink, this cocktail is about as old school as you’re going to get. If you’re not out on the town, but still have an old-school hankering, here’s how you make it:

2oz blended whiskey 2 dashes bitters 1 tsp sugar soda 1 strip orange peel 1 strip lemon peel

Directions

Muddle the sugar and bitters together in a cocktail glass. Add ice. Pour in the whiskey and a splash of soda. Stir. Garnish with orange and lemon peels and serve.

But last time I was at Meg’s, one of my friends ordered the Dino Burger. It looked yummy, so when I had a hankering for some Meg’s this week I decided to switch it up from my usual and get a Dino Burger delivered to my house (which also keeps my streak of only-visiting-Meg’s-when-tipsy alive). So what is a Dino Burger? Well, for those of you who have never seen one, a Dino Burger consists of two patties topped with double cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomatoes, fried mushrooms, onions, relish and Meg’s homemade burger sauce, all of which is resting between two slices of garlic toast. Let me tell you: eating this is not a graceful undertaking. We’re

talking a dense mass of ooey, gooey, sauce-running-down your wrist, as you try to gulp it back before the bun and meat and everything else goes all over the place. After eating all that I was happy I ordered in because I went into a food coma and promptly fell asleep, with dreams of burgers and samosas dancing in my head. Meg’s Restaurant 101 3rd Avenue North | (306) 477-1046 Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

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music

Next Week

coming up

The Mohrs

Steve Dawson

Neko Case

@ Amigos Cantina Sunday, March 16 – $15

@ The Bassment Thursday, March 20 – $17+

@ O’Brians Event Centre Sunday, May 18 – $35+

Jackie Mohr’s first foray into music was with a cover band called The Prostitots. She figured it was a good way for her to get her name out there in the thriving Winnipeg music scene. Pretty soon, though, the hardrocking lady grew tired of playing other people’s songs and, along with Marc Girardin, formed a band called Living in Red. Together they released an EP, toured the prairies and ended up on the CBC show Cover Me Canada. After the show they returned to Winnipeg and decided to disband. A year later, Jackie and Marc packed up their car, moved to Toronto, hooked up with Greg Markham and Max Trefler, and The Mohrs was born. They’ll be opening for Electric Six when they come to Saskatoon. Tickets available through ticketedge.ca.

Some musicians are just naturals. Even though hours and hours have been poured into honing their craft, what comes out seems so natural, so effortless, so unforced that you tend to forget all the hard work that’s been put into their music. Steve Dawson is one of those musicians. A stalwart of the Canadian music scene for more than a decade, this folk singer/songwriter from Vancouver makes tunes that sound organic. From the flowing guitar to the crisp arrangements, his songs take you on a memorable, laid-back journey through the hard-bitten underground and over the corduroy roads of folk music. Case in point: his latest album, Rattlesnake Cage, an record featuring a man, his guitar, and a whole lot of effortless awesomeness. Tickets at saskatoonjazzsociety.com.

Neko Case once told Time that “Country in its pure form is very punk.” And she should know. Having kicked off her career drumming for punk bands in Vancouver, Case crossed over into the world of country — bringing with her a certain turbulence from her punk roots. The result was a sort of noir country that has garnered her massive amounts of fans and critical acclaim. And if her sweeping brand of alt-country isn’t enough to make you fall in love with Case, well, maybe her penchant for dropping f-bombs in interviews or her habit of covering Tom Waits, Bob Dylan, Neil Young and Hank Williams will make you jump on the bandwagon. Catch her live at O’Brians Event Centre in May. Tickets available through http://www.obrianseventcentre.ca. – By Adam Hawboldt

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

Sask music Preview Thinking of recording? Then why not apply for an Investment Program grant? SaskMusic offers project funding in support of the production of commercially viable sound recordings for promotional use or commercial release. Applications are being accepted for the March 17, 2014 deadline for Single/Demo Sound Recording and Commercial Sound Recording (Album). The Investment Program is funded by Creative Saskatchewan Inc. For more information, and to apply, please visit www.saskmusic.org/funding/investment-programs.

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food + drink listings

March 7 » March 15 The most complete live music listings for Saskatoon. S

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Friday 7

House DJs / 6Twelve Lounge — Funk, soul & lounge DJs liven it up. 9pm / No cover Basement Paintings / Amigos — With Black Tremor and Mehta. 10pm / Cover TBD Ross Nykiforuk / The Bassment — Enjoy some smooth jazz. 4:30pm / No cover Big Band Series: U of S Jazz Ensemble / The Bassment — Playing jazz standards and originals. 9pm / $10/$15  The Gong Show / Béily’s — A hot band that will get you dancing. 9pm / $5 cover Nightrain / Buds on Broadway — A Led Zeppelin tribute band. 10pm / Cover TBD BPM / Diva’s — Resident DJs spin electro/ vocal house music. 10pm / $5 DJ Eclectic / The Hose & Hydrant — Local turntable whiz DJ Eclectic pumps snappy electronic beats. 8pm / No cover

DJ Stikman / Jax — It’s all your favourite party hits.. 9pm / $5 cover DJ Big Ayyy & HENCHMAN / Outlaws — Round up your friends. 8pm / $5 The Mailman’s Children / Prairie Ink — A rock band from Manitoba. 8pm / No cover Disco Ninjas / Freehouse — Come see your favourite DJs spinning. 9pm / No cover Jett Run / Stan’s Place — A night of rockin’ good run. 9:30pm / No cover VIP Fridays / Tequila — Come tear it up on the dance floor. 9pm / Cover TBD DJ Nick Ruston / Uncle Barley’s — Come and check him out! 9pm / Cover TBD Alexis Normand / Village Guitars — With Raphael Freynet. 8pm / Cover TBD Johnny Don’t / Vangelis — Party on! 10pm / Cover TBD

SaturGAY Night / Diva’s — Resident DJs spin exclusive dance remixes. 10pm / $5 Back of the Bus / Finn’s Irish Pub — It’s an SPCA fundraiser. 3pm / Cover TBD DJ Kade / The Hose — Saskatoon DJ lights it up. 8pm / No cover Dr. J / James Hotel Lobby Bar — Spinning funk, soul, latin and jazz. 9pm / No cover DJ Stikman / Jax — Ladies night with the Jax party crew. 9pm / $5 cover DJ Goodtimes / Longbranch — Playing the hottest country music. 8pm / $4 cover Royal Canoe / Louis — With Friend of Foes. 8pm / $14.75 (ticketmaster.ca) DJ Big Ayyy & DJ Henchman / Outlaws — Round up your friends. 8pm / $5 No Hurry Trio / Prairie Ink — Acoustic guitars and tight harmonies. 8pm / No cover BENEFIT / Rock Bottom — A wicked night of tunes for a great cause! 9pm / $10 Music for Mutts / Saskatoon Academy of Music — Come + enjoy. 7pm / $20 Funktion / Spadina — Come see your favourite DJs spinning. 9pm / No cover Jett Run / Stan’s Place — A night of rockin’ good run. 9:30pm / No cover DJ Anchor / Sutherland Bar — It’s a video mix show! 10pm / Cover TBD Saturday Night Social / Tequila — You’ll be moving. 9pm / Cover TBD Music is Great Britain / TCU Place — Celebrating incredible British composers. 7:30pm / $6+ DJ Thorpdeo / Uncle Barley’s — Spinning hot tunes all night. 10pm / Cover TBD

Saturday 8

House DJs / 6Twelve — Resident DJs spin deep and soulful tunes. 9pm / No cover SIA Choral Choir / Aden Bowman’s Castle Theatre — Celerbrating International Mother Language Day. 3pm / No cover Gunner and Smith / Amigos — With Megan Nash + more. 10pm / Cover TBD The Once / The Bassment — A folk rock trio from Newfoundland. 8pm / $17/$23 DJ Aash Money + Sugar Daddy / Béily’s — These two throw it down. 9pm / $5 cover Men without shame / Buds — A Led Zeppelin tribute band. 10pm / Cover TBD

Sunday 9

Industry Night / Béily’s — Hosted by DJ Sugar Daddy. 9pm / $4 The April Verch Band / Broadway Theatre — Fiddle music from Ontario. 7:30pm / $27+ DJ KADE / The Hose — Saskatoon DJ lights it up with hot tunes. 8pm / No cover Sunday Night Jam / Stan’s Place — Come play some tunes. 8:30pm / No cover Blues Jam / Vangelis — Blues to rock and beyond. 7:30pm / No cover

Monday 10

Buffy Sainte-Marie / Broadway Theatre — A musical treasure. 7:30pm / $37+ DJ Audio / Dublins — Spinning dope beats. 9pm / Cover TBD

Tuesday 11

Cedar Sky / Buds — Come rock the night away. 9pm / Cover TBD DJ SUGAR DADDY / The Deuce — This crowd favourite rocks. 9:30pm / $4 cover DJ Nick Ruston / Dublins — Spinning dope beats. 9pm / Cover TBD Verb presents Open Mic / Rock Bottom — Come and rock the stage! 9pm / No cover Open Mic / Somewhere Else Pub — Come out to show your talent. 7pm / No cover

Wednesday 12

DJ Modus / 302 — Spinning all your favourite tracks. 10pm / $3

Salsa Night / Béily’s — Latin music and salsa dance lessons. 8:30pm / Cover TBD Free Willy / Buds — An all-out rockin’ good time. 9pm / Cover TBD DJ Memo / Dublins — Spinning dope beats. 9pm / Cover TBD DJ Kade / The Hose — Saskatoon DJ lights it up with hot tunes. 8pm / No cover Buck Wild Wednesdays / Outlaws — Come ride the mechanical bull! 9pm / $4 The Nobles / Rock Creek (Willowgrove) — A laid-back, good time. 8pm / No cover

Thursday 13

The Residuals / Amigos Cantina — A local Celtic five-piece. 10pm / Cover TBD The Kim Salkeld Trio / The Bassment — Enjoy some great music. 8pm / No cover Curved Worth / Buds — Let’s party. 9pm Throwback Thursdays / Earls — Retro funk, soul + more. 8pm / No cover DJ Kade / The Hose — Saskatoon DJ lights it up with hot tunes. 8pm / No cover DJ Goodtimes / Longbranch — Playing the hottest country music. 8pm / $4 cover Mavericks / O’Brians — Alt-country Florida style. 7pm / $45 Triple Up Thursdays / Tequila — Featuring DJ Dislexic. 9pm / Cover TBD Open Stage / The Woods — Hosted by Steven Maier. 9pm / No cover

Friday 14

House DJs / 6Twelve Lounge — Funk, soul & lounge DJs liven it up. 9pm / No cover

Continued on next page »

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Young Benjamins / Amigos — With John Antoniuk + more. 10pm / Cover TBD Martin Janovsky / The Bassment — Enjoy some smooth jazz. 4:30pm / No cover The Fretless / The Bassment — Canadian Folk Music award winners. 9pm / $20/$25 Flashback Fridays / Béily’s — The best of the 80’s, 90’s & more. 9pm / $5 cover RipperTrain / Buds — Rock/alt/metal from a local band. 9pm / Cover TBD BPM / Diva’s — Resident DJs spin electro/ vocal house music. 10pm / $5 DJ Eclectic / The Hose — Local turntable whiz pumps snappy beats. 8pm / No cover DJ Stikman / Jax — It’s all your favourite party hits.. 9pm / $5 cover DJ Big Ayyy & HENCHMAN / Outlaws — Round up your friends. 8pm / $5; ladies in free before 11pm Purdy Bird / Prairie Ink — Local folk/ acoustic music. 8pm / No cover Matt Blais, Hedged / Rock Bottom — Alterntative, blues and rock all night long. 10pm / Cover TBD

Toon Town Big Band Dance / Royal Canadian Legion — Big band music. 8pm / $15/$18 DJ Fudge / Freehouse — Local DJ spinning your favorite songs. 9pm / No cover Darrin Roy / Stan’s Place — Come down for a rockin’ good time. 9:30pm / No cover VIP Fridays / Tequila — Come tear it up on the dance floor. 9pm / Cover TBD DJ Nick Ruston / Uncle Barley’s — Come and check him out! 9pm / Cover TBD The Faps / Vangelis — With Bad Decisions and more. 10pm / Cover TBD

Saturday 15

House DJs / 6Twelve — Resident DJs spin deep and soulful tunes. 9pm / No cover Concert for Change / Amigos — With Wolfen Rabbits + more. 10pm / Cover TBD The Diana Panton Quartet / The Bassment — A spellbinding actress with an ethereal voice. 8pm / $30/$40 DJ Aash Money + Sugar Daddy / Béily’s — These two DJs throw it down. 9pm / $5

SaturGAY Night / Diva’s — Resident DJs spin exclusive dance remixes. 10pm / $5 Ray Richards / Finn’s Irish Pub — Come celebrate St. Patrick’s Day! 8pm / No cover Liverpool / German Cultural Club — Covering the Beach Boys + more. 8pm / $15 DJ Kade / The Hose — Saskatoon’s own DJ lights it up with hot tunes. 8pm / No cover Dr. J / James Hotel Lobby Bar — Spinning funk, soul, latin and jazz. 9pm / No cover DJ Stikman / Jax — Ladies night with the Jax party crew. 9pm / $5 cover DJ Goodtimes / Longbranch — Playing the hottest country music. 8pm / $4 cover Bass Kleph / O’Brians Event Centre — With Mat the Alien + more. 8pm / $40 DJ Big Ayyy & Henchman / Outlaws — Round up your friends. 8pm / $5 Crooked Timber / Prairie Ink — An an eclectic acoustic duo. 8pm / No cover

Fuse Collective / Freehouse — The gang is back doing their thing. 9pm / No cover DJ Anchor / Sutherland Bar — It’s a video mix show! 10pm / Cover TBD At the Movies / TCU Place — Featuring songs from Up! + more. 7:30pm / $35+ St. Patrick’s Day Party / Tequila — With Mern, Kindo and Gibshow. 6:30pm / $5+ DJ Thorpdeo / Uncle Barley’s — Spinning hot tunes all night. 10pm / Cover TBD

MoSo presents: Sleepy Sunny / Vangelis — With The Moas and CFCR’s The Jay of Spades. 10pm / $12/$15

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

21 Mar 7 – Mar 13 @verbsaskatoon

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Ode to Artemisia

Photo: Courtesy of warner bros. pictures

300: Rise of an Empire introduces wild, seductive new villain by adam hawboldt

D

o you remember the 2007 film 300? The one about the Battle of Thermopylae, where 300 brave Spartan soldiers faced the entire Persian Army and held them off long enough for the Greeks to rally their forces? The one where Leonidas (as played by a beefedup Gerard Butler) yells “This is Sparta!” before kicking a Persian messenger into a large, open well? Of course you do. It was visually stunning, and one of the cooler movies of 2007. Right. Well, now nearly seven years later there’s a sequel to that movie called 300: Rise of an Empire. Okay, it’s not exactly a sequel. Perhaps a sidequel? A companion piece? Quick (and ultimately limited) history lesson: in 480 BC, at the same time the Persian army was marching on Thermopylae, a fleet of Persian warships sailed on Artemisium to invade Greece by sea. A small allied Greek army, led by a wily politician named Themistocles set out to defend Greece from the Persian advance. They battled for three days

and fought well, but eventually retreated. After the Battle of Thermopylae, the two sides met again at sea in the Battle of Salamis. This time the allied Greek forces, still under the command of Themistocles, took a page from the Thermopylae book, lured the Persian fleet into the narrow Straits of Salamis and proceeded to beat the ever-loving hell out of them.

300: Rise of an Empire Directed by Noam Murro Starring Eva Green, Sullivan Stapleton + Lena Headey 103 minutes | 18A

Simple. You rewrite history and add a badass new villain into the mix. Sure Xerxes (Rodrigo Santoro), the impossibly tall Persian King-God from the original film is still around. But in a stroke of sheer brilliance, the creators of 300: Rise of an Empire enlisted the always seductive Eva Green to play Artemisia, commander of the Persian fleet. It is a role, it seems, that Green was born to play. As Artemisia she is menacing, twisted, and sexy. She kisses a freshly severed head and screams in near sexual delight when she cuts limbs off. At one point she seduces Themistocles (Sullivan Stapleton), then later, in the heat of battle, tells him, “You fight harder than you f*ck.” From top to bottom and side to side, this is Eva Green’s movie. There’s no other way to slice it. She chews through her dialogue with

It is a role, it seems, that Green was born to play. As Artemisia she is menacing… Adam Hawboldt

If that sounds a little (or a lot) like a watery version of the Battle of Thermopylae, that’s because it was. So how do you make a sequel/sidequel/companion piece to 300 without making the exact same movie?

zest, zeal —and also with more than a little camp. Without given too much of the movie away, let’s just say that Green’s Artemisia is a delight, the Battle of Salamis isn’t fought at close quarters, and there’s enough black-and-red CGI’d bloodshed to make 300: Rise of an Empire an entertaining and enjoyable movie. A movie that somehow takes place before, after, and during the

Battle of Thermopylae. A move that, if you’re a fan of the original 300, will tickle you in all the right, slick, and violent ways.

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A thing of great beauty

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

Photo: Courtesy of medusa film

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).

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,

Shot with luxurious style … The Great Beauty will feel familiar to anyone who knows Italian cinema. Adam Hawboldt

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

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 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 is currently being screened at Broadway Theatre.

Feedback? Text it! (306) 881 8372

@VerbSaskatoon ahawboldt@verbnews.com

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Check out our Facebook page! These photos will be uploaded to Facebook on Friday, March 14.

saturday, march 1 @

bon temps

facebook.com/verbsaskatoon

Bon Temps Cafe 223 2nd Avenue South (306) 242 6617

Photography by Patrick Carley Continued on next page Âť

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Photography by Patrick Carley

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saturday, march 1 @

diva’s

Diva’s Nightclub 110-220 3rd Avenue South (306) 665 0100

Photography by opalsnaps.com Continued on next page »

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Check out our Facebook page! These photos will be uploaded to Facebook on Friday, March 14. facebook.com/verbsaskatoon

29 Jan 17 – Jan 23 /verbsaskatoon

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

30 Jan 17 – Jan 23 entertainment

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crossword canadian criss-cross 32. Herring relative 36. Away from home 37. Able to walk the line 39. Narrow bed 40. Opening in a door for mail 42. Physical education 43. Currency unit of Malta 44. Upper chamber of Parliament in Canada 46. Decides upon 48. Flaxlike fibre 49. Very recently 50. Sediment from fermentation 51. The twice daily rise and fall of sea level

DOWN 1. Make plump 2. Songs that you sing 3. Alcoholic beverage 4. Candelabrum 5. Wife of a king 6. Vase with a foot 7. Sleeping 8. Make less usable 9. Temporary failure in judgment 11. Birth-related 12. ___-chef 14. Experienced sailor 17. Cradlesong 20. Green shots 21. Organic compound 24. Pouchlike plant part

26. Sound a kitten makes sudoku answer key 28. Fire is one A 29. Person in charge 30. Measuring tool 31. Lacking a key, in music 33. Christmas tree decoration 34. When life begins, in a saying 35. Greek vowels B 38. Double curves 41. Like housepets 43. Lascivious 45. It’s worn with some shirts 47. Garland of flowers

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

1. Shaving cream type 5. Thigh muscle, for short 9. Cuplike spoon 10. Located in a city 12. Glossy fabric 13. Medical injections 15. Makes a decision 16. Cheer for a flamenco dancer 18. Information 19. Put to work 20. Trim limbs 22. Guy’s companion 23. Physically pleasing 25. Cold-water fish 27. Olympian, e.g. 29. Modified leaf

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

ACROSS

© walter D. Feener 2014

Horoscopes March 7 - March 13 Aries March 21–April 19

Leo July 23–August 22

Sagittarius November 23–December 21

At times this week, your will find that your head is in the clouds. Enjoy the fantasy world while it lasts — reality is lurking just around the corner.

If you feel the urge to spring into action in the next few days, Leo, don’t hesitate. Just do it, and get things done. You can’t wait forever.

Your imagination will be especially active in the later part of the week, Sagittarius. Put your creative thoughts to good use.

Taurus April 20–May 20

Virgo August 23–September 22

Capricorn December 22–January 19

Things might not feel like they’re fitting into place this week, Taurus, but don’t worry. And don’t try to press the issue too much.

If you encounter a problem you can’t solve, try not to stress about it. Things will eventually work themselves out in due time.

This is one of those weeks where you’re just going to have to roll with the punches, Capricorn. Keep your head down — things will balance out soon.

Gemini May 21–June 20

Libra September 23–October 23

Aquarius January 20–February 19

Appearances can be deceiving. You know that, Taurus, but be careful this week. Things aren’t always what they seem.

Remember this slogan in the coming days, Libra: if you can dream it, you can do it. Don’t disregard any of your fantasies.

Don’t be afraid to take chances this week, Aquarius. Be bold, make demands, and helpful forces will come to your aid.

Cancer June 21–July 22

Scorpio October 24–November 22

Pisces February 20–March 20

There could be a bit of confusion in your life this week, Cancer. Trying to make sense of it will ultimately get you nowhere.

Be calm. Be strong. Be grateful. If you can do that this week, Scorpio, good things will definitely come your way.

Information coming at you may be scattered and delusional this week, Pisces. Take it all with a very big grain of salt.

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

crossword answer key

A

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

B

31 Jan 17 – Jan 23 /verbsaskatoon

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Verb Issue S280 (Mar. 7-13, 2014)