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Reuben and the Dark enrapture sold out crowd

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Calgary based indie rock band Reuben and the Dark played a sold out show in a darkened room for the Geomatic Attic, April 20.

They laid down a very mellow vibe with two guitarist/keyboardists, a drummer and a bassist backing Reuben Bullock with ethereal harmonies.

Reuben and the Dark at the Geomatic Attic. Photo by Richard Amery
 The end result was an appreciative crowd and a multi-layered sound reminiscent of Radiohead with touches of Crosby Stills and Nash and Pink Floyd.The crowd consisted of mostly long time fans who sang along with the lyrics and cheered the more popular  numbers. Bullock reflected on previous Southern Alberta gigs at the Slice, observing they didn’t go well, but blamed himself for that. He also mentioned getting a call from the Fort Macleod RCMP inquiring about a stolen “laser” after a South Country Fair gig  in 2013.

“ We had such a great time there. And I did not steal it. If we had a laser, it would be here,” he told the audience.

 Bandmates Shea Alain, Kaelen Ohm, Brock Geiger, Ian Jarvis unplugged to end the first set by singing a haunting a cappella number highlighting their vocal harmonies, backed only by gently strummed acoustic guitar and banjo.

—By Richard Amery, L.a. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 26 April 2017 09:25 )

B.A Johnston performs new music

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BA Johnston always puts on an entertaining show. He entertained a decent sized, Tuesday night crowd at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, April 18 in support of his new album “Gremlins 3.”

B.A Johnston entertaining a Tuesday night Owl Acoustic Lounge audience. Photo by Richard Amery
 The Hamilton based slacker poet/ folk musician/ manic madman leaped around the stage,  rolled into the crowd, fed customers their own drinks, wandered behind the bar and fed bartender Braeden a bottle of something strong, and stripped off sweatshirts as usual, except this time they all had the same logo on them.

 He leaped back on stage like the bastard child of Weird Al Yankovic and the Arrogant Worms, checked his hand as if to see if the name of the city he was playing was written on it, made jokes about Medicine Hat and Owl owner Steve Foord. He thrashed at his battered acoustic guitar played keyboards with his nose and fiddled with his “iPod” aka a vintage, malfunctioning Discman for the more synth heavy background beats.

 He started off with quirky crowd favourites including “Deep Fryer in My Basement” and “No “Frills.” and got the crowd to shout along with “GST Cheques.”

 He also played a couple of the new songs including “Dayoff is a Dayoff, about being drunk, but being called in to work anyway plus “Cheap Suds” and “Drive Thru Beef.”

 He also added relatively newer songs like “My Room Mate is a Couche Tard.”
He ended his set with the always popular “McDonald’s Coupon Day,” before officially ending the fast paced, hilarious show in the ladies’ washroom, where he sang “I Want to Get Drunk,” accompanied by half of the good natured audience.
I missed Bubble Wrap’s opening set. Local synth rock band Open Channels played another solid opening set of original music including crowd favourites like “Checkpoint Charlie” as well as new material.
 It was powered by scrappy guitar and perky synthesizers

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 26 April 2017 09:19 )

Harmonies ring clear with Eli and the Straw Man

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I’m glad Philip Bosley reminded me he was performing  at the Slice with Eli and the Straw Man and that I was one of a handful of people to catch the Easter Monday, April 17 show.Eli and the Straw Man playing the Slice. Photo by Richard Amery
 Unfortunately  very few people were on hand to hear the band.
 They played an excellent set, mostly concentrating music  from their new CD “Light the World.”

The band, including Bosley on bass, drummer  TJ Rogers, guitarists James Gizzie and Nathaniel Goold, percussionist /trumpet player Tam Maiuri backing vocals and frontman Eli Maiuri.

 They played a solid set of catchy roots rock featuring  harmonized guitar, sweet vocal harmonies and a beautiful sound.
Tam Maiuri’s trumpet soared through the room making several songs stand out as much as brief harmonized guitar leads did.
 Bosley got to sing lead on a song called “Sweet Adrianne.”

  Another highlight was “My Sweet Woman” which didn’t make the cut for the new CD.
 and they played a slower version of “Folsom Prison Blues.”

Eli and the Straw Man’s Tam Maiuri playing a trumpet solo at the Slice, April 17. Photo by Richard AmeryThey played a second set as the audience began to drift away.
“I’ve Seen Better Days, ” from their new Cd was a highlight which ended up being an especially appropriate song for poorly attended show.

— By Richard Amery, L.a. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 26 April 2017 09:14 )

Eclectic week of laughter, loudness and great music

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April winds down with an eclectic selection of entertainment happening.

 Tonight there are several excellent shows happening.

Juno Award winning bluesman Paul Reddick is  at the Geomatic Attic beginning at 8 p.m., April 25.Outrun the Arrow play the Smokehouse with Sleep Science, April 28. Photo by Richard Amery

 After that finishes, things heat up at the Slice with indie rock/ roots groups the matinee and  the Fast Romantics performing.

Then, get over hump day with laughter at the Owl Acoustic Lounge’s stand up comedy open mic, Wednesday, April 26.
That same night, if you missed them at the Casino on the weekend, or just want a second helping of the blues, local blues rock band  Zojo Black play the Slice.

There is an array of music happening on the weekend, with an emphasis on country and folk music.
 Winnipeg bluegrass band the D-Rangers are back together and stopping by the Slice, Friday, April 28 for what should be an exceptionally energetic and sweaty show at the Slice. They will  be performing with fellow Winnipegger, indie folk musician Okay Mann aka Katlin Mathison and  Edmonton indie folk trio Post Script.
The Red Hot Hayseeds are at the Owl Acoustic lounge on Friday, April 28 as well.

For the complete opposite to that, The Lethbridge Symphony Orchestra Museaus Extras series features Strings Sing at the Cité des Prairies at 7:30 p.m.. Tickets are $25 for the concert or $50 for the full experience including  dessert and a meet and greet before the concert. the program features Alexander Borodin String Quartet No 2 (Scherzo & Nocturne)
Léo Delibes — Flower Duet from Lakmé; Franz Schubert —Death and the Maiden Quartet and
Giuseppe Verdi — String Quartet in E Minor (Scherzo & Trio) .

 For the opposite again, the Smokehouse is starting to host more shows.
Local hard rock band Outrun the Arrow will be performing with Vancouver’s Sleep Science. The show begins at 9 p.m. There is a $10 cover.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 25 April 2017 10:27 ) Read more...

Shaela Miller pumped to compete in Storyhive video competition

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Local roots and country musician Shaela Miller is excited to compete in the Storyhive video competition and hopefully win a $10,000 grant to shoot a video with Calgary  director Laura Combden for a new song “Colour My Love”  from her brand new album due out in the Fall.

Shaela Miller is competing in the Storyhive video competition. Photo by Richard Amery
“She approached me about it because she’s been a fan of mine for a long time and she saw me perform the song at South Country Fair and she said it stuck with her,” Miller said.

“It’s very cool. I’m pumped about it,” she said.

“ Originally she wanted to shoot a video for ‘Lonely’ but I didn’t want to do a video for an old song that came out seven years ago so I sent her rough mixes of the new album,” she added.

“ It’s about a sheriff’s wife and a female convict, who realize that though they lead very different lives, they aren’t that different from each other,” noted Miller, who will be playing both women in the video.
If she wins, they will shoot the video in Southern Alberta in early June, with a July release.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 25 April 2017 10:06 ) Read more...
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