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OPINION

Volume 2, Issue 1 Editor-in-Chief Dean Scott editor@windsorindependent.com Business Development Andrew Bell Associate Editor: Jessica Rupert Created by: Fred Sorrell & Dean Scott Contributors: Andrew Bell, Jimmy James, Noah Scanga, Max Marshall, Derek Harrison, Damian Piper, Rachel Stadder, Chippy Daniels. Amy Gleeson Cover by: Greg Maxwell Want to contribute? Send us your reviews, interviews, news, essays etc. to: editor@windsorindependent.com

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West Versus East in the Ukraine: What is the World to Do ? By: Jimmy James The situation in the Ukraine is a serious one with protest and violence tearing the country apart and the international implications that follow. The whole situation started when the previous government, led by Viktor Yanukovich, decided to abandon a trade and partnership agreement that would see the poverty stricken country of the Ukraine cement closer ties with the European Union. The government decided to abandon this agreement with the EU, favoring stronger ties with Russia, which has led to a tumultuous nation. The tear is coming from the demographics of the Ukraine itself, with those in the West favoring closer ties with the EU, and those in the East of the Ukraine, who are mainly Russian speaking, favoring closer ties with Russia. To vent their frustration for the abandonment of the EU agreement, those in the West took to the streets to demonstrate their anger and resentment towards the government. These protests have expanded from not only the EU trade agreement abandonment, but also for Yanukovich to step down. The reason for the protests seem obvious, with certain regions of the Ukraine favoring relations with different sides of the world. But, it is not necessarily the domestic side of the crisis that makes this situation so serious. Instead it’s the international implications that are the really interesting and troubling part of this issue. As we saw before, the country has been split between the interests of the EU and Russia, which is due to the fact that both have a large interest in the country of only 46 million people. Both of these nations have a vested interest in the Central European country due to its natural resources. In regards to the EU, the Ukraine is interested in the possibility of economic prosperity and also the possibility of a more democratic government that would coincide with this prosperity. The interest in Russia comes from two sources: resource dependence and demographics. The east side of the Ukraine consists of a heavy Russian speaking population due to years of immigration, which is the reason for the

loyalty of the east to Russia. There is also the fact that Ukrainian industries are dependent on Russian natural gas. So whichever way you look at this crisis, it is a complicated one indeed. The recent developments of the past few weeks is what brings this crisis into mainstream international politics with the occupation of the Ukraine’s Crimea region by Russian forces to secure Russian interests. The West, including countries such as the U.S, Canada, the UK, and Germany have all expressed their distaste for the Russian aggression and are calling for Russian forces to leave or there will be consequences. Along with the outrage by Western nations, the Ukrainian government has now officially condemned the Russian military presence and has demanded their immediate withdrawal. While the Russian forces are only in the Crimea region and Russian officials have stated the forces are there to defend and protect their compatriots in the eastern side of the Ukraine. With both Ukrainian and Russian forces refusing to cede to one another’s demands the question then becomes what should the international response be? First of all the idea of a military response to this issue is not a possibility with American officials, such as John Kerry and John McCain, stating that a military option is not in the worlds best interest. With this in mind, the only other response, and the most sensible in my opinion, would be economic sanctions. These economic sanctions that the US and other Western countries could use to put pressure on the Russians could be measures such as visa bans, asset freezes, and isolation by the international community on trade and investment. These economic sanctions will be the best course of action since the Achilles heel of Russia is their economy. So by hitting the Russians where it hurts economically, I think that the world can hope for a peaceful solution to this problem. Hopefully sending a message to countries of the world that may follow the Russians lead, that such behavior will not be tolerated. Either way there needs to be a significant and forceful response by the international community to the crisis in the Ukraine.


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CELLOS

faster, louder, heavier local noise rock heavy hitters Photo by: Murad Erzinclioglu

By: Andrew Bell Band names can be misleading, especially in independent music. Normally, there are subtle cues found in a band’s name that point the listener to the style of music they’re about to experience – you’d hardly expect a band with ‘Death’ in their title to be singing happy pop songs about life’s finer points. With a band called Cellos, most people would expect to hear something classical – or at least, featuring the instrument in question. This month’s local feature artist is here to put that misconception to rest while drowning your ears in a thick layer of distortion and pure, unadulterated energy. The band – vocalist/guitarist Kyle Marchand, drummer David Allen and bassist Joe Rabie – have been pushing their unique brand of punk-tinged noise rock since they formed three years ago. As members of a myriad of local bands, the boys stumbled on each other at a show on Devil’s Night of 2010 and decided to join forces to create something visceral and new. The parts all fell into place quickly, according to Marchand. “We found out we were living in the same city, and we all wanted to do something heavier. We got together and ended up writing two songs that wound up on our first record during our first practice. We knew we had something special at that point.” Cellos played their first show as a band in March 2011, opening for Winnipeg’s Polaris Prize-nominated KEN Mode, and haven’t slowed down since. They’ve released three albums to date on three different record labels, including Wind-

sor record store/label Ah Some Records and two American indie labels. They’re no stranger the challenges that come with releasing independent albums, but their latest full-length The Accident really put that process into perspective for them. “We were talking to the owner [of Ah Some Records] and he’d mentioned that he wanted to start putting out records again. We had full control of every aspect of the record – from where we wanted to get everything printed, to the colour schemes and the design of the record inserts.” But it wasn’t all wine and roses, according to Allen. “It was really rewarding, but it was stressful at the same time. A lot of things came together at the last second for us, but there were never any guarantees,” The band has a hard time categorizing their unique style, saying that the weight of their music comes from years of listening to metal and the energy comes from their love of punk music, but it’s not quite that simple. “We dip into a lot of genres that might not come out overtly,” laughs Marchand. “We listen to so much music that it’s bound to happen. We love playing music that’s full of energy but that’s also challenging.” Part of the band’s edge comes from heading into the studio before songs are fully finished, and letting some spontanaiety bleed through into their recordings, which helps keep them at rapid pace without resting on their laurels. They have no plans of resting any time soon. The band just departed on a mini-tour of Ontario before the release of this issue, and are determined to push their music as far as they can go.

They plan to release a new record in the next year, and are looking to expand across the border as soon as possible. “We get a lot of new fans through our Bandcamp, and a lot of them are from the USA – I think that releasing our albums through American labels has helped that, but it’s great to know that people are digging our music without even seeing us play it yet.” Marchand is optimistic about their market across the border, but frustrated about the red tape that has kept them from being able to make it a reality. “The border is bullshit. I mean, it’s imaginary – there’s this tiny body of water between us. I can see the fucking bar that I want to

songs, but I’m finding that I can’t just scream my lungs out for 45 minutes straight,” explains Marchand. “I’m human. I get winded. The songs will still be dynamic and heavy, don’t worry – they’ll just be a little bit slower so I can breathe.” Just when you thought that the band had too much on their plate, you’ll be interested to know that Cellos is far from their only project – they’ve got their hands in a number of local bands (Poughboy, What Seas What Shores, Area 51, and too many more to count), but try to treat Cellos as their main band without neglecting their other

"The border is bullshit. I mean, it’s imaginary – there’s this tiny body of water between us. I can see the fucking bar that I want to play in." play in, and I’m not even looking to make that much money off of my music. I just want to give kids a great show, and I’m being told that I can’t.” We hear you there, buddy.

projects. They also own and operate the Jam Space on Walker Road that gives musicians a space to make as much noise as they want, as well as music lessons and recording for emerging artists.

While you wait for the band to drop a new album, they promise they have new content to tide you over. They recently recorded a live-off-the-floor Pinball Session through a studio in Guelph that you can find online, crank through your speakers and host your own sweaty listening-party moshpit to in your basement.

“We have the best jobs in the world,” says Allen. “We get to teach kids music, and we get to make our own at the same time.” Their students are always surprised to hear what their teachers’ band sounds like, but most of them leave as fans.

When asked about the style of their new record, Cellos is hesitant to give away details, but they do say they’re working on a few slower songs. “We have all of these fast and loud punk

We’d like to formally thank Cellos for keeping music alive in the city, and for making punk-rockers out of impressionable young minds. Pick up copies of their albums digitally or on vinyl through their Bandcamp, and make sure you catch the band whenever you can to see what you’ve been missing.


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electric 6 Detroit’s Best-Kept & Sweatiest Secret

By: Andrew Bell Does the name Electric Six mean anything to you? If it doesn’t immediately come to mind, take four shots of Jamieson and type ‘Danger! High Voltage!’ into your YouTube search bar. I’m confident the memories (as well as the dance moves) will come rushing back. Since forming in Detroit in 1996, the six-piece rock band has released nine full-length albums, a live album and DVD, and a rarities collection, and has been spreading their unique brand of irreverent garage-punk-dance-metal across the big blue planet. I was lucky enough to catch the band for a phone interview as they crossed into Vancouver to start the Canadian leg of their latest tour before looping back around for a homecoming show at The Blind Pig in Ann Arbor. It turns out that there’s an unwritten rule about the person who holds the microphone also being responsible for holding the wheel – a fact that synth player Tait Nucleus wasted no time in apologizing for. Nobody likes to talk to the bass or synth player. We’re the unexciting members of the band, and we’ve got all of this pent-up aggression to unleash. Hold up a second – I’m halfway through this box of donuts that we picked up in Portland, and there’s a Captain Crunch donut calling my name. I think we just became best friends. Let’s get it all out there, then: what’s the hardest part of playing synth in a band like Electric Six?

Fargo, North Dakota. I know that sounds crazy, but we have to lug all of this heavy equipment up a couple flights of stairs, and there’s never enough room for us on the stage. After eleven years in the band, I’ve just learned to get used to it. I tried my hand at my own sideproject, and ended up crawling back on all fours when it fell flat on its face. It’s funny – my parents always wanted me to go to college, and I always told them that college could wait while I tried the professional musician thing. Here we are eleven years later, and it’s probably too late for that – so you could say it was a success. Hopefully Canada treats you right and gets you into party mode before your homecoming show at The Blind Pig in a few weeks. After touring the world, how important is being from Detroit to the band?

we are now – after putting out as many albums as we have, it’s kind of necessary. We’ve never shied away from our roots, and we love name-dropping our favourite places in Detroit. We’ve had some member shuffles along the way too – but our only criteria, other than having to be able to play your instrument, is that you’re from Detroit. Obviously, being on the road so often means you’re also watching the city from a distance. Is it hard to see the decline of Detroit, and do you think there’s a quick fix? I think that people in the city need a fresh start. We can probably blame Thom Yorke’s late-90s bashing of Detroit for a big chunk of why people aren’t flocking to the city – and we can hope that Dan Gilbert’s incentives for businesses to move back into the downtown core will help. It just seems

"Hold up a second – I’m halfway through this box of donuts that we picked up in Portland, and there’s a Captain Crunch donut calling my name." Did you know that Nirvana played at The Blind Pig before they made it big? When you walk into that bar, they’ll make sure they remind you. But that’s not what’s important here. We started out at a time where there were all of these three-piece garage-rock bands making a lot of noise, and so we decided to flip the script and make a band with double the members. We started out trying to make that dirty Detroit racket, and we’ve just evolved to where

like everyone inside the city wants the change to happen faster than it is, and everyone outside of the city is painting it like a Mad Max movie. I’ve been spinning your newest record Mustang for the past few weeks – and I’ve noticed there’s a pretty significant hate-fest going on for Adam Levine. What’s up with that? Mustang is one of my favourite records that we’ve done, just because it has

that heavier edge to it. The funny thing with ‘Adam Levine’ is that we’ve done a couple of different drafts; first it was ‘Guy Fieri’ and then ‘Avril Lavigne’, but Adam’s name just fit better. It was more of a device than anything – so you could say that he’s just a tool in the long run. Amazing. All of my suspicions have just been confirmed. So what’s next for the band? In the next year, there are exactly three things that you can count on: death, taxes, and a new Electric Six record by the fall. We’ve been working on the record while we’re on tour – just throwing demos and ideas back and forth so that when we finally get to go record, we’ve at least got an exoskeleton to work with. We also just put out our live DVD through Kickstarter – you can buy it online if you want, but screw it. Come get it at a show and kill two birds with one stone. And here a guy named Tait Nucleus thought he’d bore me. Theory, disproven. You can pick up copies of the band’s new album Mustang and live DVD Absolute Pleasure at their homecoming show on March 22nd at The Blind Pig in Ann Arbor. Buy the gang a round of shots and let them know we sent you. And for the love of all things holy, don’t scream ‘Play Gay Bar!’ at the top of your lungs. It’s not 2003 anymore, you know.


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Q&A With Artist: Greg Maxwell One of Windsor's most prolific gig poster artists.

If you've been to a show in Windsor recently, have walked around the city, or have picked up this mag before, then you have most likely seen the bizarre and lively works of graphic artist, Greg Maxwell. Maxwell has been carving out a name for himself by helping promote bands and events through his gig poster art. He illustrated the cover of this issue, as well as the poster for the event on the back. We had a chance to speak with him about the creative process, his style, and how he became interested in the art form:

Every since I was a kid, I have been drawing. I used to draw comic books and stuff like that. Eventually I got to highschool and would doodle. A lot of the stuff I drew used to be dark and people started passing around my drawings in class. So, I stopped drawing and didn’t draw for years. I hated the idea that people were looking at my stuff. I started kind of getting into it again when I started studying film at the University of Windsor. I would do stuff for animation, and posters for my films to advertise. I started drawing posters for friends bands. I went to highschool with What Seas, What Shores and had a lot of friends growing up in the punk scene of Windsor, so I started doing their posters and it just spiraled from there. Since it’s someone elses artwork, once I’ve passed it to them, it is theirs. Even though I drew it, it’s theirs. If they are happy with it, then I am fine with it. INSPIRATIONS: Mostly movies. Usually I will just listen to the band that I am doing the poster for and see what it reminds me of. Sometimes it doesn’t represent the band at all, but I’ll just feel it fits.

My biggest inspirations are Saul Bass and Raymond Pettibon. CREATIVE PROCESS: Sometimes I’ll have a specific idea for the band ahead of time,so when they say that they need a poster, I kind of have it banked in the back of my head. Sometimes I won’t have heard the band before, so I’ll listen to their music and whatever I feel it represents, I’ll put it into the artwork. Everything I do is mostly hand drawn. HAVE YOU BRANCHED OUT PAST WINDSOR? I’ve started to do show posters in Toronto. I’ve done show posters for London, St. Catherines, Sarnia. In the last couple months I have been doing more and more for Toronto bands. PROCESS BEHIND CREATING A PIECE: I hand draw it, then I scan it into my computer and colour it with Photoshop. Sometimes I’ll use Illustrator to smooth it out. I was in a band in highschool and I used to do our show flyers back then. They were the type you would photocopy and hand out at shows. HOW HAS YOUR STYLE PROGRESSED? Honestly, I don’t know. There has definitely been a progression but I didn’t notice when it happened. It’s been really slow and gradual. Because I’ve been doing it for a few years, and have done over a hundred, after a while you get a process and you start to be able to do them better. It used to take almost a full day, literally not doing anything else than the poster. Now I can hammer them out within a couple hours if I have to, without letting the artwork suffer.


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Solids Blame Confusion

XPrime The Album

Twin Forks Twin Forks

Academy A Way with Words

By: Andrew Bell

By: Andrew Bell

By: Andrew Bell

By: Noah Scanga

Over the past five years, there’s been an incredible resurgence of two-piece garage rock bands that care more about using noise to build texture than about using three power-chords to keep your head mindlessly bobbing – and that’s a good thing. Bands like Japandroids, DZ Deathrays and the newly-reformed Death From Above 1979 have been waving the flag for the genre, gaining critical acclaim and pushing the boundaries of this obscure musical territory – and now Montreal duo Solids are ready to join the melee with their debut full-length, Blame Confusion. They’re a part of a wave of music sweeping the country that celebrates a lo-fi homage to their late-90s predecessors, falling somewhere between Dinosaur Jr and Sonic Youth while still carving their own niche.

Too many of us head to a concert just in time to see the band we know that’s closing out the night – which saves some valuable time, sure, but means that you’ll miss the opening bands who actually have something to prove. That’s how I was introduced to the Welland-based four-piece juggernaut, Xprime, and it’s re-affirmed my commitment to catching local openers for every show.

The early 2000’s emo movement was hard to avoid, with bands like Jimmy Eat World, Motion City Soundtrack and Fall Out Boy taking over the airwaves and our playlists at the same time. Those of us that got hooked were hooked hard, and a lot of us have Chris Carrabba and Dashboard Confessional to thank. After ten years of running that ship into the ground, however, the prolific singersongwriter has taken his music to a new dimension with the creation of his four-piece folk-rock band, Twin Forks, and is ready to recapture your attention and devotion.

In 2004, a group of emcees from both sides of the Detroit river started collaborating, releasing mixtapes and albums. In the span of 10 years they have performed with a variety of artists including D12, Swollen Members and Obie Trice. Now, Academy is a duo consisting of Trilla from Windsor and Kayyce Closed from Detroit.

The album picks up slowly with the build-and-release groove of “Over The Sirens”, and sets the tone for what you’re about to hear for the next 45 minutes. The next four songs get progressively faster and more desperate-sounding, driving through punk-rock fury on “Traces” and “Off-White” before bringing your heart rate down to a measurable pace to soak up the lead single, “Haze Away”. By the halfway point, the unobservant ear might think the band was running out of steam – but some of the album’s best songs occupy the record’s back half. The predominately instrumental “Cold Hands” wouldn’t be out of place on Alexisonfire’s Old Crows album, and the second-to-last track “Not Complaining” might be the band’s most exciting burst of energy, drawing influences from late 90’s alternative, emo and punk. The album closes on an interesting note, with a slow song building to a huge finale and tucking you in for the nap you’ll need afterwards. It may take a few spins to recognize the brilliance of the band’s music – and their name, come to think of it – but once you’ve taken the time to fully process the album, it’ll be a staple in your playlist for years to come. Make sure you’re listening in quality speakers though, or the full effect will be lost on you. Go pick up a copy of the record and keep great Canadian musicians from becoming great Canadian fast-food employees.

The band has been pushing hard for the past five years, starting as a cover band and quickly coming to their own after the release of the 2012 debut Here We Are EP and opening slots for highprofile Canadian bands like Hollerado, Born Ruffians, USS and Trooper. The band has perfected their signature sound with four-part harmonies and a pop sensibility beyond their years, and their explosive live performances are sure to transform new listeners into life-long fans. The Album starts just like a live performance would – the sound of nervous crowd anticipation that you’d expect standing in front of them, waiting for the first note to drop. When the band launches into the sugary-sweet, toe-tapping singalong “Inspiration”, all doubts are cast aside as the band croons about their personal inspiration to write music and get sweaty with their fans. The band wastes no time kicking up the tempo, sweeping into debut single “Early To The Sun” with a sultry falsetto that your mom and your girlfriend will both fall in love with instantly. Potentially the strongest point in The Album is “Paints & Powders”, an energy-soaked dancing song for the ladies about remembering the person you are behind your makeup facade. The song breaks down into a reggaeinspired chant of “Be yourself today” that’s guaranteed to put a smile on your face. Xprime is recapturing a lost art in the independent music scene, using their individual talents cohesively to build something beautiful and uncompromising. Go see for yourself at Villains Beastro on March 28th. You’ll be glad you did.

Twin Forks finds itself somewhere in the middle of the folk-rock movement – lending easy comparisons to bands like Mumford & Sons, Of Monsters & Men and Edward Sharpe who’ve worked to popularize the genre – with a penchant for stomp-clap choruses and heartbreaking lyricism that set them apart from their contemporaries. Carrabba’s voice is as strong as ever, and while the band often takes a backseat to his powerful vocals, the moments where they do shine through point to a musical cohesion that most bands normally struggle through their first three records to understand fully. The album starts strong and up-tempo, with the album’s catchiest song “Can’t Be Broken” leading the charge. There’s a broken quality to his voice that lends to the song’s authenticity, and it serves as a great introduction to what Twin Forks has to offer. The album stays strong through the first half, with the lead single “Cross My Mind” whistling its way into the deepest parts of your memory along with the stomp-soaked “Back To You” and the witty lyricism of “Something We Just Know”. About halfway through, the record abandons its upbeat groove and delves into more familiar territory for Dashboard fans with a focus on acoustic instrumentation and slow, harmonyheavy choruses. The songs tend to blend into each other after that point, but the album as a whole still feels like an emotional rollercoaster with the charm and memorability of an instant classic.

This new album features a diverse group of artists from both sides of the border, which gives this album a dynamic scope of how hip hop sounds in the Midwest. It has real border city feel, with traditional Detroit electronic beats mixed with a border city hard working mentality. Musically this project felt limited, a lot of the production feels outdated, whether it is the instrumentation, or un-imaginative harmonies. Even some of the song structure felt overdone and repetitive, with choruses that extend too long between the verses, or hooks that don’t really pull a listener into the music. This can make this album feel stagnant and un-progressive at times. What this album may have lacked, musically it made up for in lyrical content. Initially it feels sporadic and without focus. But, when you consider the amount of contributing talent on this album; it would be hard to imagine all of them having similar stories and ideas. “This is love” is a good example of Academy’s lyrical talent. The song is a love song, to hip-hop, done in a true hip hop fashion, raw and creative. The way the lyrics are transformed from their career, into a song depicting a deep and intimate relationship one would have with a person. These types of qualities are the ones that make this project enjoyable. This project stands out, because of its varying styles of hip hop, whether it is darker and violent lyrics, heartfelt lyrics depicting struggles, gangster rap stories, and even the occasional line that resembles battle rap like qualities. By having so many different styles of rap on this album, it highlights Academy’s lyrical talent, and their ability to write a line for any piece.


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Riot Grrrl Tuesday Presents: Clothing swap for a cause

Border City Music Project Local documentary challenges technology/status quo By: Andrew Bell As the final frame flashes across the screen, a quiet hush falls over the audience, followed by the rapid-fire murmur of a thousand questions being whispered at once. What did we just experience? What was the film about, and what were we supposed to take away from it? This conversation appears to be exactly what local filmmaker John Gillies was anticipating from his new documentary, Border City Music Project – an ambitious project that tells the story of our collective experience with technology and the importance of living in border towns through a musical lens. Those of us who planned on seeing a detailed expose on the music scene that exists in Windsor and Detroit – or the increasingly strained connection between the two – were a little confused once the final curtain fell. While the film features a number of our favourite musicians (including members of Gypsy Chief Goliath, Inoke Errati and Big Sugar, as well as the film’s co-producer Dusty D’Annunzio), the importance of music to the narrative was more subdued than expected for a film named Border City Music Project. As we came to find out, that was just a part of the greater story that the filmmakers were trying to tell.

That story, of course, focuses on the overwhelming influence of technology on the way that we live as a culture. According to Gillies, the film is a subtle reflection of the world that we live in – a world where people rely on things like Twitter and Facebook to inform them about the global state of affairs, and are becoming increasingly distant in person while building their personalities into a simulated online reality. He’s urging people to challenge the status quo; to seek out reliable alternative sources for their news; and to actively participate in culture instead of absorbing it second-hand through a computer screen. When viewed in that lens, the Border City Music Project is a small-scale success, using beautifully detailed cinematography and high-profile interviews to build a terrifying view of the culture that we’re becoming – a stumbling collective of robots, crouched in our respective corners and forgetting what our humanity looks like at its core. We hope that viewers will find their way to this conclusion themselves, and take the time to put their phones down and have a meaningful human conversation long after the house lights come up. The revolution has already begun – it’s just waiting for your attention.

By: Amy Gleeson Dozens of women meet armed with bags of gently used clothing, looking to swap and trade clothes with others, DIY style. Instead of having old clothes waste away in the closet, they are traded and exchanged for free, with attendees adding fun, new pieces to their collection. Following the huge success of a previous clothing swap, Riot Grrrl Tuesday is hosting another swap this month, on Tuesday, March 25th at Phog. Not only does this help the environment and the women who are trading, Riot Grrrl Tuesday’s event also helps other women in the community, as all left over clothes from the swap are promptly donated to Windsor’s Welcome Center, an emergency shelter for women experiencing homelessness. The last clothing swap held by Riot Grrrl Tuesday was held in October, 2013 at The Phog Lounge bar downtown, and was a huge success with a great turnout. Three large bags of clothes were donated, full of shirts, dresses, pants, shoes, and other accessories. “It was an amazing turn out last time. You never can tell how many people will show up to these events and throughout the night, more and more people came by. Clothing, community, and beer speak to people on a deep level,” says Riot Grrrl Tuesday co-founder, Sarah Morris. Base Riot Grrrl Tuesday is a feminist collective founded in Windsor, that

meets monthly for fun events that foster friendship and a positive change for the community. Based on the 90s movement, Riot Grrrl combines the punk scene with feminist activism, encouraging girls and women to get involved in learning to play instruments, form bands, and to take charge in the underground music scene. Feeding off this movement, Riot Grrrl Tuesday sets out to encourage girls and women to explore music, art, charity, and activism in Windsor, while meeting once a month for different kinds of events. “I love Riot Grrrl Tuesday because I think it brings together a unity of women, which can sometimes be forgotten about. It creates a strength and compassion for each other, too” said RGT member, Rayven Howard. “I think that awesome events like Riot Grrrl Tuesdays are the best way to really form a community. It's such a great way to meet people who share your values, be entertained and have a beer. It's honestly like a play-date for feminists” said another member, Maggie McGuire. This month, on March 25th, Riot Grrrl Tuesday is hosting its second clothing swap at the Phog Lounge, and welcomes anyone who is interested. They suggest you bring at least three gently used items, with all styles and sizes being welcomed. Anything from accessories to shoes to jackets are welcome, and the event is completely free. Even if you do not want to grab any items, donations are appreciated and go to a great cause.


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Lada Alekseychuk creates unique pieces of clothing from anything that catches her attention. She is a Canadian designer who was originally born in the Ukraine. The above pieces are from her, "Shik

Rags" collection, featuring resurrected garments woven together into a wearable collage. For more from Lada, check out her website at: http://www.sorridente.org/


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Coming up for Air Windsor’s continuous struggle against air pollution

By: Max Marshall

According to the Government funded, Cancer Care Ontario, Windsor has some of the provinces highest rates of several respiratory cancer’s, and cardiovascular and immune disorders as well. Experts continue to debate whether the high rates of these diseases can be linked with the city's elevated levels of air pollution. But proving such associations has been an anomaly, linking these diseases directly to exposure is a work in progress as there are simply too many variables at play. Let’s clean out the ducts, shall we? Canada’s southernmost city faces a chemical cocktail that originates from numerous pollutant sources. As well as being one of Canada’s most industrialized cities, Windsor is also upwind from heavy polluters in the United States, including a high concentration of coal fired power plants in the Ohio Valley, and in Michigan, incineration facilities, steel mills and the once open air storage of petroleum coke, a byproduct of oil refining, along Detroit’s riverfront. On top of that, the Windsor/Detroit border crossing is the busiest in North America, second in the world, with an estimated 5 million plus cars and transport trucks passing through annually. The result of tight border regulations of post 9/11 America has left near thousands of transport trucks idling throughout the day and night, every day and night, even longer than ever, miles from the Ambassador bridge, down Huron Church road, and further towards Essex county. The smell is constant and sometimes the haze, visible. The new bridge will definitely take this exposure away from residential areas, but cars and trucks still pollute, and the NIMBY complex emerges; people as far away as Nova Scotia are affected by the Ambassador Bridge, Michigan and Ohio’s emissions. Along with this chemical cocktail effect, Windsor, Ontario is not only one of Canada’s hottest cities, and in recent summer months, record-breaking, it is Canada’s most humid city. In 2012 Windsor suffered from 24, almost a collective month, of smog days. Humidity not only creates smog, but lowers lung capacity, effectively concentrating the caustic effects it has predominantly on our younger and older age groups. Some scientists are speculating that as climate change increases the average temperature of the province, smog formation will increase as well. Climate change is a speculative anomaly, that I can’t comment on, but as long as we’re hitting record breaking temperatures, the smog increase is a serious menace. Slumming it proper on the west end back in July 2011, a strange layer of heat stuck around. Like we were all

The lake freighter Algocape in the Detroit River off Windsor, Ontario / April 09. CC-by-2.0.

individually wrapped in sheets of pink fiberglass insulation and stuck in an old attic. We complained, naturally, but got used to it. Months later Statistics Canada let everyone know that Windsor, Ontario, July 2011 was the hottest month on record in Canadian history. Living in St. John’s this winter, I sympathize over my hometown’s winter of arctic proportions. “Max, we have the same fucking temperature as the planet Mars!” an excited, frozen pal informed me one evening over the telephone. It was -22 below not including wind chill, I tried to inform him that Mars fluxuates between -150 degrees at the poles and hits a balmy 20-35 degrees in the summer, but between rehabilitating gulps of Jameson, he shivered a pirate laugh and told me he’s never in his life felt it this cold. His heating bill started to sink him and one night his jam jars froze in the cupboards. Extreme weather may be here to stay, and pollution, although not in bloom as it is within warmer months, still plays a part in winter weather. No ventilation during winter months allows for particulate matter to settle in; kitchen vents, air purifiers and filters help. I type this and sound like a bomb shelter advocate. The mere suggestion of any sort of preventative measure coming from me, a lazy-jay folk musician, comes across as a bit rich…so I’ll get back to the facts. In 2001, a "Community Health Profile of Windsor" study was done by Dr. Michael Gilbertson and Mr. James Brophy, and they found elevated levels of cancer, cardiovascular complications and defects, hospitalizations, birth

defects, and deaths associated with the high levels of pollutants in the air and water. In June 2003, longtime NDP MP and outspoken environmentalist Jo Comartin, shocked and inspired by what he read in Gilbertson-Brophy report, put forward Petition No. 79 to the Auditor General and Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development, asking for an inquiry into the longtime association between Windsor’s air quality and the high rates of respiratory cancer and cardiovascular diseases. Environment Canada’s response came in November of that year with what was up until then, the most concise survey conducted. Using the Province of Ontario’s Air Quality Index Reporting System (AQI’s), they found considerable evidence of health effects associated with exposure to air pollution. For example, more people die and are admitted to Windsor hospitals for heart and lung problems on days with elevated levels of air pollution. They found lifespan is decreased in cities with high air pollution. The study proved the obvious…that air pollution has negative health effects on the lungs and the cardiovascular system, can change heart rates, constrict arteries, and increase blood pressure. It was shown that there were high concentrations of particulate matter and volatile organic compounds, called VOC’s in Windsor’s air, and, as mentioned, that greater health risks occurred when these particles and compounds settle in indoor air, or where ventilation is poor. Fine particulate matters, like cadmium and lead, are especially volatile due to its ability to penetrate deep within the

lungs of a human body. Once fine particulate matter is inhaled, it is with you for life, slowly adding up and strengthening its negative effects on your lungs and cardiovascular system. As of 2011, Windsor was ranked as worst in the province for the presence of airborne fine particulate matter by the Ministry of the Environment. The issue of debate is, although overwhelming evidence in the Gilbertson-Brophy report suggests a link between the raised respiratory cancer and cardiovascular diseases and the poor air quality, air pollution being the direct cause of these diseases cannot be proven until a much larger, more detailed survey is completed. But of course…Controversy…In 2008, Ontario environmental commissioner Gord Miller, armed with data his office compiled independently, slammed the Ontario Air Quality Index’s methods, when his independent AQI readings registered “very poor” and Ontario AQI we’re registered as “good”. His criticism was focused on the fact that Ontario AQI monitoring stations do not record street level air quality, and only measure for contaminants that are downright toxic. Miller told the Windsor Star that when these AQI stations are generally removed from high pollution areas “their readings can be of questionable value to people living next to factories or busy streets”. And don’t take into consideration ‘the potential cumulative negative effect of pollutants mixing together”. The Windsor Star reported that Miller said “Ontario, which had one of the world’s most advanced air monitoring systems when the AQI was(Continued on page 17)


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windsorindependent.com/

Lights, Literature, & Laughter Acclaimed authors to launch new poetry collections

#DUBZINTHEAIR Icky Eric and the music video that has been taking local social media by storm Who is Icky Eric? My name's Eric Smyth. I was born in Vancouver, grew up in Windsor, and live in Toronto. I'm a hip hop producer, sound engineer, and MC. I used to go by the name Smyth the Kid. I changed the name up about a year ago. How did the song/video come about? I sat on this song for over a year, and sat on the beat for over a year before that. I made the beat in 2012 or 11. I couldn't even write the song until I moved away and started missing the city. Back in September on my birthday I decided to go back home to Windsor to celebrate, and figured we'd shoot a video for the track. Brought AJ Jimenez with us (another Windsorite living in Toronto) and did the damn thing! Had a venue rented out for the club scenes. What has been the reaction you've experienced so far? The reaction has been crazy. People have been posting a ton of pics with their Ws up in the air. I've been inter-

viewed, and had interviews requested by a bunch of media outlets, and the video got 3400 views in one day so far. My phone is going nuts between instagram tags of ppl with their Ws, reposts on facebook, mentions on twitter etc. My iPhone is freezing up from all of it. I'm really humbled and excited by it all. Who was involved? I involved as many people as I could. Like I said I made the instrumental, I wrote the song, and recorded and engineered it myself, but the video was done by AJ, and I had as many of my friends as I could come to that party scene. The real part that was a group effort was the people reposting it so much, and showing so much support. That's what made the whole thing so special. It's turning into a real Windsor pride campaign. Where do you go from here? From here? I have some plans...You'll have to stay tuned to find out!!

What We Talk About When We Talk About Poetry A (heated) panel discussion on Canadian poetry Local bookstore, Biblioasis, is hosting a conversation on Canadian poetry on March 22nd, featuring poet/critics Zachariah Wells, Jason Guriel, and Anita Lahey. A heated debate between Canadian poets has been taking place on social media lately, when discussing the interaction between Canadian poetry with gender, race, and individual taste. Moderator, Robert Earl Stewart will be on hand to keep the participants civil. In addition to the discussion, the three

poets will be releasing their respective titles, Career Limiting Moves, The Pigheaded Soul, and The Mystery Shopping Cart. Each author will introduce their upcoming book and discuss their role and opinion on the lively debate. The event is open to the public, is free to attend, and will be kicking things off at 4:30 p.m. Biblioasis is located at 1520 Wyandotte St. East, Windsor, Ontario.

Team Wingmen reveals the cover of Why-Shaped Scars to John Wing Jr. at the University of Windsor. Photo credit: Sarah Meeke.

John B. Lee performs "Jimi Hendrix in the Company of Cows" at Poetry at the Manor. Photo credit: Asil Moussa.

By: Rachel Stadder John B. Lee and John Wing Jr. are launching their newest poetry collections, Burning My Father and WhyShaped Scars, respectively, on April 4th in a literary spectacle. Lights, Literature, and Laughter will be a dynamic double launch party hosted by the University of Windsor’s editing and publishing practicum at the Caboto Club from 7-10 pm. This public event is free and the authors will be signing their books. Each book costs $17 (or both can be purchased for $30). Burning My Father is the best of the Black Barns Trilogy. It weaves a powerful story of internal conflict, personal growth, and honouring one’s family. As a child, John B. Lee felt he lived at the centre of nowhere. Only later did he appreciate the value of hard work during his formative years on a farm near Highgate. The students visited John’s farm in September 2013 and witnessed how his poetry preserves a compelling story about the family farm in decline. Rich pastoral elements and the guilt that

haunts John for abandoning his family legacy coalesce in Burning My Father. Why-Shaped Scars is a deeply reflective collection which addresses not only John’s repertoire as a comedian and his life on stage but the struggles of youth and lost innocence. Much like a scar of uncertain origin, Wing’s poetry may be questioned but never forgotten. WhyShaped Scars is poignant yet cleverly comical. Wing employs bright humour to confront dark chaos, memory, and personal crises. The presentation of his poetry represents the duality of his life in an incredibly resonant fashion. John B. Lee lives in Port Dover and is the Poet Laureate of Brantford and Norfolk County. He has written over 165 books and garnered more than 70 awards, including Black Moss Press’s inaugural Souwesto Award. John Wing Jr. was born in Sarnia and now lives in Los Angeles. He is a comedian, a father, and an America's Got Talent semi-finalist. He is also the author of several poetry collections. Burning My Father and Why Shaped Scars will also be available online at blackmosspress. com on April 4th.


windsorindependent.com/

APRIL

“As enchanting as ever, Cochrane’s Little Sway brings a modern folk fusion to the jazz golden years of Holiday and Fitzgerald.” - Rosina Riccardo, ChurcHouse Network

“Originally from Halifax, Cochrane moved to Windsor in 2010 and has used the influence of living in the shadow of Detroit as inspiration, as the smooth sounds of Motown drift throughout her latest album. The 24-yearold has already cemented herself as a strong force in the local music scene.” - Dylan Kristy, The Windsor Star

“The Jammy award winning Crissi Cochrane returns! This time she takes a step away from folk and leans into some soul with backing support from Walkervilles members Stefan and Mike. Her best work to date! Give it a spin!” - Murad Erzinclioglu, CJAM 99.1FM

Printed with acknowledgement of the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage (Canada Music Fund) and of Canada’s Private Radio Broadcasters, as well as funding support from the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.

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windsorindependent.com/

What's Wrong With the Beer Store

“Rino’s Kitchen (& Ale House) … will be boycotting The Beer Store and only purchasing products through local, small craft breweries or stocking alternative products shelved at the LCBO.” - Posted by Rino's Kitchen via their Facebook page. Rino Bortolin’s boycott of the Beer Store has lent a little bit of local flair to the ongoing debate about the Beer Store. I touched on this in an article a few months back and made no secret about my distaste for the chain, but this time around I’ve tried to pin down exactly what is wrong with the Beer Store. To my surprise, it turns out (according to a 2013 Angus Reid survey) that 87% of Ontario residents believe that the beer store is government-owned. In fact, it’s not even Canadian-owned. 49% of the corporation is owned by Anheuser-Busch InBev, co-headquartered in Belgium and Brazil, the world’s largest brewer. Another 49% is owned by Molson-Coors co-headquartered in Montreal and Denver, Colorado. The remaining 2% is owned by Sapporo of Japan. The debate centers around whether it is fair for the Beer Store, which is

Understanding the Debate

owned by three of the world’s largest brewers, to have the exclusive right to privately sell beer in Ontario.

Following the Money On paper, the Beer Store is a retailand-distribution system operating on a cost-recovery basis, meaning that any money they bring in is meant only to cover the cost of operations. I have seen many people fall for this, believing that the Beer Store does not bring in any money. However, economist Anindya Sen published a study in August 2013 which found that the Beer Store brings in an estimated $700 million per year that is unaccounted for by expenses. So where is this money going? The cost-recovery system means that any money that comes in which exceeds the operating costs is issued as a rebate – to the owner breweries. The Beer Store can continue to claim to be a non-profit and AB-InBev, Molson-Coors and Sapporo can divide that $700 million per year amongst themselves. This $700 million comes primarily from mark-ups. A case of beer costs an average of approximately $10 more in Ontario than in Quebec. Much

more inexplicably, the cost of a case of beer for an Ontario licencee is significantly higher than for the public. Ever wonder why Labatt Blue is so expensive at the pub? You can get a case of it for yourself for $29.95 but the owner of your local bar has to pay $44.75 for the exact same product, almost 50% more. These mark-ups, with few exceptions, only apply to the beers made by the owner breweries. For a few examples of the beers owned by the same companies who own (and collect all of the profits from) the Beer Store, just have a look at their “Top Ten” list: Coors Light, Molson Canadian, Budweiser, Blue, Bud Light, Carling, Busch, Keiths, Heineken, Lakeport Pilsener Heineken is the only non-owner beer on this list, but it is distributed in Canada by Molson-Coors.

A Conflict of Interest The Beer Store includes almost exclusively their owners’ products in marketing materials and in the “quick grab” sections of their stores. But this isn’t the only way they discourage the

By: Derek Harrison

sale of non-owner beers, their direct competitors. Despite the fact that their monopoly in Ontario is a clear conflict of interest, Ontario’s only private beer retailer charges all non-owner breweries a prohibitively high listing fee. The fact is that the owners of the Beer Store are the direct competitors of any non-owner brewers, big or small, local or international. These brewers are required to pay for the right to sell their products in the owner retail store in Ontario, and that money goes right into the pockets of AB-InBev, MolsonCoors, and Sapporo. This is especially hurtful to small local breweries, who have few alternatives. Amazingly, the Ontario Craft Brewers Association, which represents 30-odd breweries and counting, has been denied the right to open their own retail store. What we have is a market where 80% of all beer sales are controlled by three foreign-owned multi-national breweries, and nobody is allowed even the chance to compete. Does that make sense to you? http://itsnotjustthealcoholtalking. wordpress.com/


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The Cinemaniac

APRIL

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By: Damian Piperr

Nymphomaniac Volume I & II Directed by: Lars Von Trier Starring: Charlotte Gainsbourg, Stellan Skarsgård, Stacy Martin, Shia LaBeouf, Christian Slater, Jamie Bell, Uma Thurman, and Willem Dafoe. This is one of the best films I’ve seen in months, and it's the sort of flick that won’t make the Oscar list. It’s stacked with a cast of all-star talent and is borderline pornography. This brings into question: where is the line between art and porn? You may hear all kinds of reviews that are for or against this film, but I think it’s brilliant, bold and beautiful. It follows the story of a self-diagnosed nymphomaniac, our lead character Joe, played by the brilliant Charlotte Gainsbourg (Science of Sleep, Melancholia).

And the Oscar goes to...

her older years, her search for sexual satisfaction and the depths she takes herself for gratification.

After she is found laying in the street having been severely beaten, a man passing by takes her in. She recounts her story to the man.

There’s some fairly serious BDSM in the latter half, done very tastefully. You could put it in the category of Maggie Gyllenhaal’s, The Secretary, but this one’s darker and a lot deeper.

Be forwarned this is a long film, with two parts that tell the story in quite detail. The first volume chronicles Joe’s early life, her first sexual encounter, various musings and youthful promiscuity; while the second volume covers

It’s worth mentioning, as I haven’t been a fan of Shia LaBeouf since Even Stevens, that he’s progressively gotten into the news with all kinds of crazy stories. He went totally nuts at the premiere of this flick and put a bag over

Contributors wanted.

his head which said, “I Am Not Famous Anymore.” I gotta give cred where cred is due though, and I say he was damn good in this film. So, forget about your 50 Shades of Grey, this film isn’t some Hollywoodland fairytale. If you consider yourself reserved, you should still watch, keeping in mind that the sex & objectification is completely subjective. This is the kind of film you will never forget. It’s the way cinema is supposed to be.

This year had a lot of discussion on how it should be Leo's year.“Just give the man an Oscar already.” However, it was always going to be McConaughey. Dallas Buyers Club had a far greater impact than Wolf of Wall Street, and he more than deserved the win. If by chance you’ve been living in a box and haven’t watched True Detective, it’s an absolute masterpiece, with incredibly brilliant film-making and storytelling. Kudos to HBO for always keeping it real. TV is cool again, in case anyone missed the memo. McConaughey was ontop of his game with that one and as a reminder, he’s coming up next in Interstellar the new Christopher Nolan flick.


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windsorindependent.com/

I Am the Universe... An intimate experience with psilocybin mushrooms

Names and locations have been changed to protect the identities of those involved. It's three or four in the afternoon on a Saturday in the summer of 2012. I was living in Ottawa at the time. My friend Noel was on his way to pick me up. Our destination: Marz's cabin. Marz's cabin is deep in the forest surrounding Big Rideau Lake in Ontario, and there he would occasionally throw parties. It was ideal for all manner of debauchery: the cabin and surrounding properties were engulfed by miles of forest. The closest neighbors were almost 300 yards away, which didn't matter anyways as they were the aging veterans of a party era that puts our generation to shame. Marz is a professional DJ; the music is loud. There's a nearby lake that can serve any use from late night swims to washing away the hangover and sins carried on from the night before. Sometimes the stain doesn't quite wash clean. I had been to a few of Marz's parties before so I'd put some thought into this one. The midnight adventures into the hills and woods were characteristic of these events. I knew I would have to come prepared for this adventure. I'd purchased a quarter ounce of Psilocybin Mushrooms. Sometimes called Magic Mushrooms, Zoomers, One-Ups, or just Shrooms, these delicious fungi contain the psychedelic drugs Psilocybin and Psilocin. The effects of this drug vary on a case by case basis, but for the most part people report hallucinations, feeling of euphoria and happiness, a sense of greater understanding to life and those around you, and an overall connection to the universe. And sometimes, you just lose your fucking mind. I'd done shrooms before so I was ready for what was coming to me, but I wasn't fucking around today. I put them all in a blender with some orange juice. No sooner had I finished the last drop of this Shamans concoction than I heard the doorbell ring. My ride was here. I grabbed my bags and bounded out the door, happier than a kid on Christmas. Noel was driving, along with his on and

off girlfriend Lola. I loathed her. My good mood immediately plummeted. The ride to the gas station was brutal. I tried to mask my displeasure with the unforeseen company, but the feeling inside still remained. That wasn't good. Something that's important to know about shrooms: they magnify any emotions you're feeling while on them. Oftentimes it's good. Happiness becomes ecstasy, like becomes insatiable love, funny becomes tear jerking hilarity. But there is a flip side. Fear becomes terror, worry becomes soul crushing anxiety, and before you know it a single bad thought can cascade into what Hunter S. Thompson called “an introspective nightmare.” And with the present company I was well on my way. Noel was on edge due to Lola's presence and near brain injury victim-esque commentary. It was at this time the shrooms roundhouse kicked me in the face. The first effects of zoomers are always fun. You feel a tingle at the base of your spine. This is the ember that lights to forest fire. And then its off! Like a rocket, the tingle explodes into an electric vibration that shoots up your spine, into your head, and all over you. Everything tingles, and it feels good. All you can do is giggle and squirm in your chair. The world inflates and starts to move more slowly. How could I not see all these things before?! The world was flying by me as we hit the highway. I look from the window to the clock and back. I sit there and stare at the blurred sights of cars we pass, the lights of the clear summer day as I giggle at thoughts that come and go so quickly they never got the chance to form. I do this for what seems like an hour. Fuck this is a long drive, I find myself thinking. I look back at the clock. Three minutes have passed. I start laughing. Noel looks over at me and asks “Man, are you okay?”

By: Chippy Daniels

“It begins” I manage to proclaim. Everyone laughs. The noise washes over me in waves. It vibrate and resonate within me. Everyone is happy again.

people was a fucking no go. I could hardly think let alone be around two dozen people, many of whom I'd never met before.

And then Lola opens her fucking mouth.

And as I'm walking down the path, flanked on each side by an ever darkening forest, I chose to stop struggling. I gave up trying to figure out these things that used to come so simple to me. The sun is setting, and with it went the last shredded remains of my higher brain function.

In the midst of my blastoff I'd forgotten she was there. If laughter is the music of the universe, then Lola's voice is iron nails on a chalkboard. I don't know what she said, but it was fucking stupid. Noel's reply is quick and angry, and to what a sober man would be mild discontent with the ramblings of a childish man-boy became to me that deep well of unpleasant emotions and horrible anxiety over nothing that one risks when on shrooms. This wasn't going away anytime soon. I was in for a long ride. By the time we'd gotten to the cabin my mind was ragged and in tatters. My spirits had perked up at the idea of seeing many of my friends, but damn these shrooms had taken a toll on me. As I climbed out of the van everything felt strange. Every move I made seemed unnatural. I found myself second guessing whether or not I should start walking with my right foot or my left. A huge group of people were now walking towards us. What the fuck do I normally do when other people are around? God damn it say something. Say hi? No that won't do. Introduce yourself? That's a fucking terrible idea. Think, you fucking idiot, think! Got it! “Would it be ok if I went for a walk?” I manage timidly. “Uh, yeah...” Noel looks at my as if I'd just suggested we drink a pint of gasoline, “but come see Marz soon, he has something for you.” Oh thank fucking God. I'm out. I nod my head and slowly, calculating every precise movement, head down the path to the main forest road. How the fuck did I used to exist? I'd forgotten the most basic actions and mannerisms of a human being. Conversation was not happening. Being around

Welcome to the depths of a shroom trip. Psilocybin has a very interesting effect on the mind. Normal consciousness acts as sort of a “valve” that limits the amount of information a person normally takes in. Psilocybin works to depress activity in several areas of the brain, including this valve. The result is what scientists call an unconstrained style of cognition. I'm no longer looking at the world around me. I am the world, looking at me. My spirit has left the bondage of my corporeal form, and I watch the body I used to possess wander down the path, past the fork in the road, ever onwards. My consciousness turns away from the body and towards the first glimpses of starlight in the sky. I am the universe, never ending and magnificent. For the briefest of moments everything made sense. There was no worry, no concern. No thought of what was to come or what came before. I was at peace. I found myself in a body that used to be mine, but no longer felt like it. It felt strange and cumbersome, like shoes two sizes too big. I decided I would have to make due, and headed back up the path. As I walked I felt a pang of melancholy, wishing that I could have lived in the peacefulness I'd known for all time. It felt like a short walk, but still, I knew I should go back. I would later be told I'd been gone for almost two hours.


windsorindependent.com/

(continued from page 11)

introduced in 1988, now needs to play catch-up to European cities, which have a blend of regional and local air monitoring for greater pollution reporting accuracy.” The Star’s article continued with Windsor-Essex County medical officer of health Dr. Allen Heimann remarking that with “more accurate air pollution monitoring and public health advisories would absolutely cut back on the numbers of premature deaths” and, “the whole point of the AQI is to alert people with pre-existing medical conditions.” According to a recent Ontario Environment Ministry report, Windsor’s air quality has improved, but “in terms of pollutants and smog-causing ozone that affect human health, Windsor is still among the worst in the province”. And it is estimated that air pollution costs the Province of Ontario over one billion dollars annually over hospital and emergency visits. The Canadian Medical Association estimated that elevated air pollution will cause 21,000 annual deaths and 314 people in that figure will come from Windsor and Essex County. Ontario is making strides to becoming the first North American region to close all coal fired electrical plants with an elimination date set for this year, and programs like Drive Clean, although met with mixed feelings, is at least a start to get heavy polluting cars repaired or off the road. But as the province strives to clean up our skies, Windsorites are feeling a bit left in the haze as, American emissions are responsible for the majority of Essex County’s pollution and studies detailing the true health effects of long-term VOC and particulate exposure are yet to be fully realized. As Windsorites, fathers, mothers, and friends we MUST get those studies underway and push for state-of-the-art AQI, and most especially work towards eliminating the Grendel of international cross-contamination. Half hurtful monikers such as “the dirty Dub” and political satirist Stephen Colbert, declaring Windsor as “the world’s rectum” earns chuckles, but I think its damaging hogwash. Our city has such a spirit, people move here for good reason. People move away, but they come back. We have arguably one of the best arts and culture, food and music scenes in the country. We have an intimate relationship with Detroit, and can escape to Chicago or Toronto, we have such geographical advantage, we can’t let another generation or two breathe in the shit from the real rectum that’s spewing out its guts as you read these words. Windsorites are known for seeking adamant improvement of their hometown, and this is a topic that we cannot afford to let up into the air. Bundle up for now; don’t hold your breath, summer is just around the corner. Max Marshall is a Songwriter, Musician and Folklorist currently living in St. John’s Newfoundland; But Windsor, Ontario is, and always will be his home.

APRIL

RJ Wrigley's The sports lounge with a riverfront view

As of January, RJ Wrigley’s Sports Lounge and Grill has taken over the space on Riverside Drive, previously occupied by Time Grill, and Escape Cafe. The new restaurant features pub style food, with a lounge setup including a games corner and ten huge flatscreen TV’s. A a silent partner behind Time Grill, owner Ramy Yacoub took over and revamped the space and flipped the menu. Gourmet burgers, specialty hotdogs, flat bread pizzas and assorted wraps comprise most of the new list. This isn’t a restaurant to check out if you’re looking to stray too far from the typical sports bar offering, however, they’ve put a unique twist on each item. We were informed that a few standout dishes that you might not expect to see at a venue like Wrigley’s had been rounded off of the menu due to lack of interest. Their appetizer list continues the sports bar vibe, with items like nachos, sliders, fries & salads. Situated throughout the bar were a few barrels filled halfway full of salted

peanuts. The customer is able to fill their own container as needed. We were instructed to simply sweep our shells onto the floor but with the shiny wooden floorboards of Wrigley’s, it didn’t have the same satisfying feel that it does at a place like Rock Bottom. I swept my shells onto the floor and silently looked down at the small mess that I made, almost feeling bad for doing so. One of the best features of Wrigley’s is the view of the Detroit River and city skyline. Large windows comprise the North wall of the establishment, and the height of the place blocks out the traffic below. The view, mixed with the sports memorabilia and ample televisions on the walls mean that there isn’t a bad place to sit in the house. Bring an attractive date and you’re off to the races. Bring a few buddies, and you’re sure to knock back a few in good surroundings. One corner of Wrigley's offers a few old school arcade games, along with sports bar favourites like foosball and a jukebox.

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By: Dean Scott

The bottle and draft menu is fairly standard, with only Walkerville Brewery standing out from the pack. If you’re looking to sample an offering of craft beers, go somewhere else. When we visited, the draft taps were down, but we were assured that they would be up and running very soon. I ordered the sliders and nachos, and received exactly that. It was nothing to write home about, but washed down well with a cold Heineken. I was informed that the nachos are handcut from tortillas and deep fried, raising the quality above bagged chips. Wrigley’s prepares the high majority of their food from scratch, straying away from frozen items. If you’re looking to watch the game and have a few drinks with friends, then Wrigley’s is an excellent place to check out. The place has an excellent setup, but lacks a bit in the delivery. They’ve only been open a few months, however, so there is still plenty of time to work out the kinks.


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March 15 Fresh Breath wsg/ Chelsey Danfield, Charles & The Righteous Where: DH ($5 ADV, $7 DR) No Yokos Where: Shooters Roadhouse Crissi Cochrane / Leanna & Conor / Echo Steps / Gone Wrong Where: Barrel House Conversation - Works by Artist Vaughn Beneteau (ongoing) Where: POP Hair Gallery Bigsexy Where: FM Lounge

LISTINGS

Sophist wsg/ The Horned & Siren Phase Where: FM Lounge Sextant (Art) Where: ACWR (1942 Wyandotte) Mic Lordz wsg/ Sledgehammer Where: Villains Beastro

March 22 Emerald Seas wsg/ Bleach and Of The Pack Where: Villains ($5)

Xprime Where: Villains Beastro The Line Drawn wsg/ Gag Order, Violent Vatican, Badger Squad Where: Coach & Horses Drop Dead Famous Where: Venue Music Hall

TUESDAYS

Crawl wsg/ Heavy & Early Where: DH

The Zillis Where: Phog Lounge

Olivia Conlon Where: Taloola Cafe

March 31

March 17 Mike Ure Where: The Bull & Barrell

James Keelaghan Where: Lakeside Park (Kingsville)

The MacNificents Where: Kilt & Fiddle Irish Pub

Seven Thrones wsg/ D3ATHCHARG3R, Antioch Where: Coach & Horses

Get Lucky Indoor Music Festival ft. Mazone & Strong wsg/ Josh Karmin, Joey Beatz, Daniel Scott & Dillon Luke ($5)

March 18

March 24 Buddies Overview of Books Where: Villains Beastro

TOAST Open Mic Poetry Where: Phog

March 26

March 19

Zaum (Concton), /wsg Devilz by Definition and Siren Phase Where: DH

The Groove Trio Where: FM Lounge

March 21 Keats Conlon Where: Taloola Cafe DJ Double A Where: Phog Lounge Guitar Army Where: DH

March 27 A Voice Of The Empire Where: Phog Lounge

March 28 Jean Paul De Roover wsg/ Walter Senko Where: Phog Lounge

MONDAYS

The Absinthe Band Where: Milk

March 16

Dead City Soul Revue wsg TUG Where: Phog Lounge

WEEKLY

No Yokos Where: Lucky’s Roadhouse What Seas What Shores wsg/ Atsuko Chiba & Learning Where: Villains ($7)

No Yokos Where: Carparelli Sound Lounge

The Nature Boys Where: Phog Lounge

March 29

What We Talk About When We Talk About Poetry (panel discussion) Where: Biblioasis

Fred Eaglesmith Where: Harrow Legion

Menos Mal, Middle Sister, Crissi Cochrane Where: The Beer Exchange

Open mic with BJ Laub Where: RJ Wrigley’s

Dick Wagner Where: Oasis Lounge

The Irish Quarter (Street Festival) Where: Olde Sandwich Towne

April 12

Something You Whisper, To The Strongest Where: DH

Open Mic w/ Andrew MacLeod and Leigh Wallace Where: DH Tuesday night Music Club – with Jamie Reaume and friends Where: The Manchester Ted (Lamont) Tuesdays Where: O’Maggio’s Kildare House

WEDNESDAYS

April 2

Pub Trivia & Live Music with Justin Zuccato Where: The Manchester

Conversation, Bring Me The Author, Your Best Bet Where: The Beer Exchange

Dave Russell Where: The Dominion House

Jeff Martin Where: Venue Rock Parlour

April 3 Brian Burke Quartet Where: Phog Lounge Jesus Christ Superstar (Theatre) Where: The Capitol Theatre (ongoing)

April 4 Amos The Transparent Where: Phog Lounge

April 7 Kelsey Laliberty Where: Taloola Cafe

April 11

Rising Star Wednesdays Where: Whiskey River Vice Aerial Where: Phog

THURSDAYS Live Music Where: Windsor Beer Exchange ‘The Jam’ Where: the Victoria Tavern Funk Night with The Funk Junkies Where: The Manchester

FRIDAYS After Work Party Where: Rino’s Kitchen & Ale House Electric Blue @ 8:30 Where: Cramdon's

SATURDAYS

Acclarion Where: Taloola Cafe

Big Jim Spence Where: Jake’s Joint

Drop Dead Famous Where: Phog Lounge

To be included in the listings please email: editor@windsorindependent.com


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April 2014