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L.A. Beat

Marvelous music at Magnetic South Music Festival

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The Magnetic South music festival was a blast and a success. All four venues, Blueprint, the Owl Acoustic Lounge, the Slice and the Tongue N Groove all had steady crowds during the festival’s debut, May 19.Red Mass was a highlight of the Magnetic South Music Festival, May 19. Photo by Richard Amery

 As promised, there was excellent music and a wide variety.

 Leigh Doerksen and Dan Puurveen aka Church opened things up by entertaining approximately 20 people at Blueprint.

 They played a solid, sometimes psychedelic,  always grooving and often rocking set of Neil Youngish originals.

Montreal’s Silver Dapple was first up at the Owl Acoustic Lounge. They played a fascinating set of loud garage meets modern rock with haunting vocals from lead vocalist Emily.

  They sounded pretty similar, but played a strong set, which sounded like a more stripped down Arcade Fire.

Local band the Ketamines were first up at the Tongue N Groove with a solid set which took the audience into the psychedelic ’60s.
 Sonis McAllister and the Barracuda Orchestre. Photo by Richard AmeryThey played their typically loud and raunchy set full of screeching organ and howling vocals from Paul Lawton, which were often drowned out by the band. They had a  solid groove and a lot of energy. The delay-laden guitar is as much a  cornerstone of their sound as the organ is, and this time they added a tambourine player who was wild, jumping all over the stage and having a blast.

 Over at the Slice Mary-Anne McTrowe and Dan Wong, who are usually known as theRole Mach at the Slice. Photo by Richard Amery quirky art inspired local duo the Cedar Tavern Singers, donned Lone Ranger masks, plugged in and turned up as the Secret Works Progress Administration.

 They put on a very innovative show. McTrowe electrified her ukulele and Wong incorporated a synth app on his iPad which he alternated with an electric guitar.

And, like always, whenever you try to hit multiple bands at multiple venues, a few great shows got missed.
 I caught the beginning and the end of strong set by the Necessities, but missed Sleeping with Tuesday, both at the Tongue N’ Groove.

Gunsmoke at the owl. Photo by Richard Amery One I did not want to miss was the long awaited return of Ottawa’s Gunsmoke, who closed off the evening at the Owl Acoustic Lounge.

 They were fantastic, combining rockabilly stand up bass groove and Gretsch mayhem with punk intensity in a super tight and a super fast set.
 They played a wild set at the Owl, which left a good sized crowd in awe.

Another mind bending band was Vancouver’s Role Mach at the Slice.
 They came across as a more jazz influenced Talking Heads as they had a trumpeter, a saxophonist and a clarinet player adding a touch of jazz to an energetic set of weirdness which sounded like Nomeansno meets the Talking Heads.Silver Dapple at the Owl. Photo by Richard Amery
 Everybody from all the venues ended up at the Tongue N Groove where Sonis McAllister and the Barracuda Orchestre were holding crazy court.

They were all dressed in white and had the whole crowd on their feet with their own unique brand  of jazzy, beatnik strangeness.
 There was manic cello and Mary Anne McTrowe in a white eye-patch pounding out percussion with a hammer on a tray full of pipes as drummer Aaron Trozzo sported a lampshade over his head. McAllister had an array of strange percussion instruments of his own.

To finish things off, a stripped down Red Mass showed everybody how garage rock is supposed to be played in their Lethbridge debut.
Church at Blueprint Records. Photo by Richard AmeryThey played a blisteringly fast set of high energy punk/ garage rock, which a psychedelic elements added by heavily flanged guitar and amazing bass playing.
 The Ketamines’ Paul Lawton and Jane Edmundson joined Red Mass on guitar and keyboards respectively on stage mid song and didn’t miss a beat as they joined in the fray. It was impressive and a wicked way to end the first  ever Magnetic South music festival.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
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Last Updated ( Wednesday, 25 May 2011 15:11 )  
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