Category Archives: Music

Dave Grohl Takes Canada

Foo Fighters

“When I was young I cut off the tip of my finger in a shop class accident, so I have to wear plastic tips,” says Dave Grohl, the leader of the Foo Fighters, on the morning of Summersault 2000’s first show in Vancouver.

His guitar playing is remarkable considering his disability so you’ll have to get real close to the stage to tell if what he’s saying is true, but it’s the cross-Canada tour he’s really excited in talking about. Going on at length about his favourite aspects of Canada, you just want to give him a little hug, hand him a toque and jug of maple syrup and give him a free “Good through all of Canada” bus pass.

Here’s what he had to say:

Getting excited about the tour yet?
Dave Grohl: I’m excited to do it. I’m really looking forward to it. The Deftones are playing today and I’m extra looking forward to seeing that. I’ve never seen them play and I really do like their record a lot. And, um, everybody else can go fuck themselves.

What’s the deal with the “Foo-B-Cue”?
We brought a barbecue tech with us on this tour. We are traveling with our own barbecue on this tour. So we’re going to set up right outside our bus and have a barbecue at every stop on the tour. We don’t have a pig on a spit or anything but, I wish…

Are you gonna play Molly Hatchet at the barbecue?
There’s gonna be a whole lotta Skynyrd, Foghat and a lot of fuckin’ death metal while we eat ribs.

Shouldn’t you eat the ribs raw for death metal?
We’ll just eat each other’s hearts or something.

So what’s it like to be back in Canada?
We were actually just here with the Chili Peppers a couple months ago. Canada to us is one of the best places to play only because, for whatever reason, they’ve embraced our band here more so than almost anywhere else in the world. The audiences here are greatly enthusiastic, so I’m looking forward to it. There’s a lot of things I like about Canada… not only is it beautiful country, the people seem to be genuinely, nice.

Now you’re sucking up.
I’m serious! There’s few countries in the world where people are actually warm and receiving. There’s Italy, there’s Spain and then there’s Canada.

How’s dealing with Our Lady Peace?
I don’t deal with anybody and you know what? We’re the easiest fucking band in the world to negotiate with because we just don’t give a shit! We don’t care! All we need is a barbecue and Crown Royal. That’s it. And some Coors Light.

Well, you are in the home of Crown Royal.
I know, that’s why I’m fucking psyched! This tour’s gonna be great!!

What do you think about Canadian chicks?
Canadian chicks are fuckin’ hot!

…As you say that winking.
Yeah. I know a Canadian chick that’s REALLY hot.

Ever heard the Fred Schnieder & The Shake Society song “Monster?”
I haven’t heard it. But anything Fred does is solid gold anyway.

It goes [singing] “There’s a monster in my pants/And he likes to jump and dance/When he comes into the room/People hit it with a broom [chorus] Oh no monster, Oh no monster…”

Wow!! Swe-eet! We have a song called “Watershed” and we went to do it acoustic on radio once but on record it’s this wild, fast, screaming punk rock song and we tried it acoustic and I realized there was no way I could scream over it. There wasn’t really any way I could sing it so I thought that I would tell a story in the voice of Fred Schnieder. The story was actually about coming to Vancouver.

More and more Canadian angles!
See what I’m talking about! I love Crown Royal! Canadian chicks are hot…

At what point do we have to declare you an honorary Canadian?
I guess whenever I get my green card. Do you have those here? I guess once I become spokesman for Crown Royal.

You could get your bus in the shape of a Crown Royal bottle.
Now that’s going a little too far man, c’mon. I don’t want the kids drowning themselves in Crown Royal every night. I’ll just wear a fuckin’ crown every night, how’s that?

That could work.
And I could make a cape out of all those purple bags! I think all the Crown we’ve drank in the last six months we could probably make a blanket or something.

What are your favourite Canadian cities?
I really like Montreal a lot and I really like Vancouver. Montreal’s good if you want to score some sticky and hang with death rockers.

Yeah, Montreal’s big on that.
I know. I love it. One of my favourite bands ever was this band Voivod. I worshipped them when I was a kid.

Iron Maiden and Rob Halford played here a couple days ago.
Hey, run to the hills everybody.

In honour of Iron Maiden and Rob Halford I stole this idea from a website called Metal Sludge. I’m going to give you a list of records for you to rate, 1 being something you should burn to keep from the ears of children and 10 being a record that’ll make you want to bust stuff in a real cool way:

Motley Crue Shout At The Devil
I give that probably about a 7.

Heart Dreamboat Annie
Ooh. That’s a fuckin’ 9!

Culture Club Kissing To Be Clever
That’s a 1.

Iron Maiden Powerslave
I’m not too familiar with that, but because it’s Maiden I give it a 6.

Judas Priest Turbo
That’s probably gonna have to take a fuckin’ 8. He was comin’ out record by record. It was gonna happen. Everybody knew, everybody fucking knew, but all the dudes that liked the music didn’t want to admit it to themselves. “He’s not gay, this rocks. No way man, no way, he’s not a fag.”

Depeche Mode People Are People
I give it a fuckin’ 2.

WASP The Last Command
2. I hate WASP.

Styx Kilroy Was Here
That’s gonna get a fuckin’ 8.

David Lee Roth Eat ‘Em And Smile
10 baby! 10 right there! That one never goes away. Did you ever hear the Spanish version of that record?! It’s so hilarious.

Foreigner Double Vision
Dude. That gets a fuckin’ 20! That’s off the chart! You can’t get any cooler than Foreigner. On that list Foreigner’s the baddest! There are legions of Foreigner fans in America.

This interview was originally published August 4, 2000 via Chart Communications.

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Concerts, Music

Samaritan News 15 Pack: Stormzy, Alice Cooper, More

Stormzy

I continue to contribute to the charitably-minded entertainment site Samaritanmag.

Here are some pieces I contributed awhile back:

WATCH: New Gillette Ad Confronts Toxic Masculinity, Challenges Men To Do Better

Blue Jays Annual Toronto Winter Fest Supports Jays Care Foundation

Barenaked Ladies, Scott Helman, Monster Truck, USS Among Acts Honouring Walk Off The Earth’s Mike Taylor At Free Show

Italian Band Mardi Gras Records “One Guitar” To Support Light Of Day Foundation

Adele, Stormzy, Marcus Mumford Part Of New Grenfell Tower Fire Awareness Video

Holt Renfrew Holiday Gund Bear Proceeds To Support WWF Canada

Crowdfunding Campaign Launched For Tom Cochrane Tour Manager Gerry Lee After Stroke

Late Mac Miller Single To Help Fund Underserved Communities

Alice Cooper’s Christmas Pudding Stirs in Hollywood Vampires, Gretchen Wilson, Sebastian Bach, Members of Blue Oyster Cult and More

Global Citizen EP1 Featuring Pharrell Williams, Stormzy, David Guetta, More Being Used To Fight Poverty

“The Talk” Raises $77,000 For UforChange Regent Park Art Charity

Roy Clark Family’s Seeking Donations For St. Jude Children’s Hospital

Bruce Springsteen-Connected Light Of Day Foundation Hosting 28 Events In Europe, New York, New Jersey For Parkinson’s Research

Release Of Rare Sufjan Stevens Song “Lonely Man of Winter” To Benefit Non-Profit Arts Venue

Leave a comment

Filed under Environment, Health, Music, Politics, Shameless Promotion

Polaris Podcast Episode 22 Features Jean-Pierre Ferland And Neil Young

Polaris Podcast EP7 was live from Ottawa.

Episode 22 of the Polaris Podcast was one of a four-part series dedicated to albums that received Slaight Family Polaris Heritage Prize designation — hall of fame, basically.

For this episode we talked about Neil Young’s Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere and then had an interview with Quebec legend Jean-Pierre Ferland about his album Jaune.

This and other Polaris Podcast episodes can be found on iTunes, Google Play or Spotify.

Or, to make it easy, you can listen to it right here:

Leave a comment

Filed under Music, Shameless Promotion

Julia Jacklin — Crushing (Album Review)

Julia Jacklin Crushing

Julia Jacklin Crushing

There’s a vacancy for the Queen of Sad Songs Throne™ now that Lykki Li is all sexy and Sharon Van Etten has become a late-period Depeche Mode tribute act and few people are better positioned to ascend to this royal role than Australian singer Julia Jacklin. Wrapped it an efficient alt-pop/country package, the 10 songs on Jacklin’s second album Crushing mine an inconsolability so deep even the act of listening to it could leave one fetal on the floor. Yet to simply call Jacklin a peddler of “sad” songs is a gross disservice. Her obsessing and catastrophizing over heartbreaks and the minutiae of relationships gone awry is filled with observations so pointed and so gut-wrenching they reveal Jacklin as a master observer of the human condition. It all starts with standout slow-burning “Don’t Know How To Keep Loving You,” which circles around and around as Jacklin comes to terms with a love that has reached its end. Jacklin goes deeper from there. “Pressure To Party” may end up being an introvert call to arms with its tale of locking oneself in their room and a promise to “try to to love again soon.” Its companion piece “When The Family Flies In,” meanwhile, captures the rock-bottom of emotional hurt, cinematically evoking listless, shuffling parents hovering around bachelor apartments without a clue what to do. Crushing isn’t just relentlessly self-involved either. Jacklin also points her lens outward to great effect on songs like the character-assessing “Good Guy,” and “Comfort,” the album closer that hopefully makes peace with everything. Taken as a whole, Crushing hurts. It’s heavy, painful and raw stuff of the heart. Mostly though it’ll make you wish only that Jacklin will learn to love again soon.

Watch “Pressure To Party”

Leave a comment

Filed under Music

Abjects — Never Give Up (Album Review)

Abjects' Never Give Up

Abjects’ Never Give Up

In the endless war against “rock is dead” trendpieces it’s important to secure one’s ammunition wherever one can. Abjects new album Never Give Up is a beautifully nasty weapon to use for the cause. Build around a cutting garage rock base, this international trio — singer/guitarist Noemi from Spain, bassist Yuki from Japan and drummer Alice from Italy — throw down a musical viciousness that’d make the “The” revival bands of the early 00s wilt in fear. Signature song “Fuck Brexit” is as unsubtle in its politics as it is ruthless as a bass-rumbling jam. “The Secret” and “The Storm,” additionally, are the sort of stompers that Little Steven plays on his radio show to ward off death for yet another week. There are some deft stylistic diversions as well. The title track made this reviewer doublecheck to make sure Abjects wasn’t a pumped up version of Lush recording under a different name, “Surf” is an aptly-names San Fran car chase soundtrack waiting to happen, and the dreamscape of “A Long Way To Go” shows there’s a more studied other side to Abjects should they ever want to explore it. In the meantime, we’ll be in the streets hurling bottles for the cause with Never Give Up playing through our headphones.

Watch the “Never Give Up” video

Leave a comment

Filed under Music

Rustin Man — Drift Code (Album Review)

Rustin Man - Drift Code

Rustin Man – Drift Code

It’s early yet in 2019 but the arrival of Rustin Man’s Drift Code could very well carry the year as the surprise you didn’t know you needed, but you’re sure glad it’s here. Rustin Man is the long-dormant nom de plume for former Talk Talk bassist Paul Webb. Last seen in 2002 co-authoring Beth Gibbons from Portishead’s Out Of Season album, Webb’s 17 years since then have been spent crafting the wobbly magic of Drift Code. Drift Code manages to nudge up to the edges of numerous rock-pop worlds while maintaining something uniquely all its own. Webb’s vocal delivery is uncannily Bowie… if Bowie had semi-retired to a wilderness preserve after 1976. The music, meticulously pieced together by Webb himself in a converted studio barn, hints of Pink Floyd or Moody Blues stripped of their high drama for something more gently psilocybic. Leadoff track “Vanishing Heart” sets the tone admirably as an anachronistic mediation on mockingbirds and a certain sort of summertime sadness. It’s “Our Tomorrows,” however, which may be the high mark for Drift Code. Punctuated by purposeful horns and threaded with a certain existential angst, it represents all of Drift Code‘s most transportive qualities. More than anything else, these songs take you places and this is Drift Code‘s best asset. Where those place may be is up to the individual listener, but it’s a journey worth pursuing.

Watch Rustin Man’s “Vanishing Heart”

Leave a comment

Filed under Music

Shadowgraphs — Another Time (Album Review)

Shadowgraphs' Another Time

Shadowgraphs’ Another Time

Dig!, the scene-defining documentary that captures the rise and fall and rise and fall of West Coast psych rockers Brian Jonestown Massacre and their frenemies The Dandy Warhols is now officially 15 years old. Perhaps the best gift that film gave us — besides firsthand insight into the madness and smarm that would eventually cause the two bands to plateau — is a whole generation of paisley-shirted crate diggers who figure a trip with both The Byrds and The Creation as well as Cast and The La’s is exactly the kind of magic carpet ride they want to be on.

Portland, Oregon’s Shadowgraphs certainly do their part to let the sound take us away on latest album Another Time. This kaleidoscopic 11-song collection isn’t so much for individual spots, though the particular melancholy “Sun Is Rising” and “Before The Time” shimmer brightest. No, where Another Time is most successful is in capturing the ever-elusive thing known as “vibe.” There’s a sway and swirl here that’s just as effective if you’re dancing under a forest canopy or beneath a wave of laser lights. Or, in a perfect scenario, both.

Watch the “Another Time” video

Leave a comment

Filed under Music