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Balrogath highlight hard rocking show at Slice

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The Slice went metal on Friday, Sept. 3.

Balrogath at the Slice, Sept. 3. Photo by Richard Amery

 I arrived in time for the end of a hot set by Eons of Earth.

They had a strong New Wave of British Heavy metal  sound mixed with death metal. So there were elements of Iron Maiden and Judas Priest as well as Ozzy Osbourne, so there were plenty of ’80s riffs and scorching guitar solos.

They featured plenty of sizzling guitar work.


 Calgary metal band Balgrogath played an eardrum bludgingly beautiful show.

 They were dressed as medieval druids with black cloaks and haunting dark make up, hiding in the shadows of the stage. they had more of an Ozzy Osbourne/ Black Sabbath feel.

 They mixed an ominous bass with big, sludgy riffs and piecing vocals, for a gothic rock feel.

 Their set was intense, tight and loud.


Berserker closing a hard rocking show at the Slice, Sept. 3. Photo by Richard Amery

Berserker wound up the show with an intense, bass heavy set of screamo and emo inspired punk music.

Jon Vornbrock bellowed out the lyrics  and played guitar from  the shadows on the side of the stage.

They always play an intense show and this one was no exception.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 08 September 2021 13:41 )

Early shows and early Halloween among this week’s highlights

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Live entertainment is going to have to adapt the the reinstatement of new Covid restrictions. In addition to having to wear masks again and alcohol sales ending at 10 p.m. ,  the fun is starting early.


Gabe Thaine’s High Level Variety is tomorrow, Tuesday, Sept. 7 beginning at 8 p.m. at the Slice.


 Over at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Hamilton funnyman B.A Johnston returns for his annual

mid week show.

 Open Channels open the show at 8 p.m. Admission is by donation.


 Thursday, Sept. 9 will be a lot of fun.


Fawns play a couple gigs this week. Photo by Richard Amery

 The Allied Arts Council wind up their successful summer afternoon concert series Upside Downtown with Fawns and Steven Foord. As always the show is from 5 p.m.- 7 p.m.

After that, Keith Catfish Woodrow hosts a blues jam at the Slice.


Freshfest which was to include performances by BBNO$  and the Felix Cartel on Friday and Saturday at the University of Lethbridge has been cancelled due to Covid.


As always Friday has plenty of live music options.

 The Tim Hus Trio will be playing the Empress in Fort Macleod at 7:30 p.m., Sept. 10 Admission is $25.

Megan Brown’s band Makiisma delayed their  “Lady Misery” CD release party and tour, last April because of Covid, but it will be happening at the Owl Acoustic Lounge  beginning at 7:30 p.m. with Wendy Colby opening.


 Uncovered play Casino Lethbridge this weekend beginning at 8 p.m.

The Plaid Ramblers, who have been playing a lot lately will be celebrating the end of summer with a roof top patio party at the Canadian Brewhouse, Friday, Sept. 10.

Admission is $10 and includes a drink ticket for a domestic bottle of beer or a highball. It is scheduled to start at 9 p.m.


And the Windy City Opry returns this week. But instead of once a month on a Wednesday, they will be held quarterly on a Friday.

The first Windy City Revival features quirky Edmonton based alt country band The Bobby Tenderloin Universe and Calgary’s Amy Nelson. It is also scheduled to start at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10.


Saturday will be off the hook.

Last Updated ( Monday, 06 September 2021 14:48 ) Read more...

Uncovered kick off Whoop Up Days with acoustic hits

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 Whoop up Days 2021 opened Thursday, Sept. 2 with  a solid show from local band Uncovered, who aptly covered everything from country to pop music in the set I heard.

 The band, Chris “Juno” Craig, Danny Douglas, Kelly Klimchuik, Ryan Kasteel and lead singer Alison Hawkins Fehr played a strong set of energetic acoustic music to a variety of popular covers.


Uncovered opened the Gas King stage for Whoop Up Days, Sept. 2. Photo by Richard Amery

 Alison Hawkins Fehr sounded and looked a little like Shania Twain as she was belting out Keith Urban’s “To Love Somebody.”

 She followed it up with summer favourite, Katrina and The Waves’  “Walking on Sunshine.”


 Djembe player Chris “Juno” Craig took over lead vocals for  a few songs including Roxette’s “ She’s Got the Look” and another ’90s number I didn’t recognize.


 Fehr returned to lead vocals and percussion duties for the Chicks’ “Goodbye Earl.”


Satellite and the Harpoonist make surprise visit to Joshua Beebe and the Forest Orchestra show

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The fun thing about bar shows following festival shows is that you never know who will show up to play.


It was technically Joshua Beebe and His Forest Orchestra’s packed show at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Saturday, Aug. 28.


Joshua Beebe and the Forest Orchestra at the Owl Acoustic lounge, Aug. 28. Photo by Richard Amery

But surprise guests Satellite and the Harpoonist and surprise surprise guests, the Rondell Roberts band, who were enjoying refreshments after playing the Coulee Blues Festival, ended up closing the show.


 I missed  an opening set by a trimmed down Dark Wrangler.

 But I was in time for Joshua Bebee and the Forest Orchestra.


 Local singer songwriter Joshua Bebee had a massive band backing up his original folk/ rock songs. The band featured drummer Devin Gergel, keyboardist/vocalist Leif Sturmanis Nordholm, clarinetist Tyler Vanden Dool, bassist Dino Scavo, flautist/vocalist Beth Wilson, lead guitarist Barry Livingstone and vibraphone player Brian Cole.


Joshua Beebe played ukulele, guitar and sang a psychedelic set of jazz tinged experimental jam band based, mostly original music with a few covers. They laid down a laid back, hypnotic layer of multi-instrumentalist sounds,  which were groovy and  enjoyable but slowly picked up the pace.


 Rondel Roberts, with a front row seat, started a spurt of manic dancing to a more up tempo number as a few more people joined the fun.


 They took a more serious note with a more spirited, impassioned number about the B.C wildfires.

 Beebe played ukulele and guitar. His tenor voice was reminiscent of Tyler Childers and our own Steve Foord.


Shawn Hall and Satellite and the Harpoonist made a surprise visit to  the Owl Acoustic lounge, Aug. 28. Photo by Richard Amery

 He showed his country roots with  an energetic version of Hank Williams’ “ I Saw the Light to end their set


 Surprise guests Harpoonist and the Satellite set up for their set close to midnight and tore things up with frenetic rhythms, playing a similar set to their Coulee Blues Festival set including Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer’s “ Mama in the Bbackseat.”

But they expanded their set  with some intense percussion fueled jams. Bradford Reed provided throbbing bass and drums on his home made pencilina, changing the note by altering the string length.

Theo Vincent’s hands were a blur on the djembe.


 The fun really began after Rondell Roberts and his drummer joined them on stage for extra vocals and more hypnotic percussion, it was as if as if a folk fest drum circle was taking place on the Owl stage.


 Roberts sang some reggae and impassioned R and B.

And the bands looked ready to play on until dawn.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Rondel Roberts and Satellite and the Harpoonist play a surprise jam at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Aug. 28. Photo by Richard Amery
Last Updated ( Thursday, 02 September 2021 14:40 )

Fun in the sun with jazz and blues at Coulee Blues Festival

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There was a lot happening on Saturday, Aug. 28 including the Raymond Music Festival, but Arts in The Park’s co presentation of the Coulee  Blues Festival in Civic Park with The Geomatic Attic and the Lethbridge Jazz Society took priority.

Jack Semple's fast fingers at the Coulee Blues Festival, Aug. 28. Photo by Richard Amery


There was no way I was going to miss Saskatchewan bluesman Jack Semple, though I missed Paul Kype and Texas Flood’s opening set.

It’s been several years since I saw him playing Casino Lethbridge with a band backing him, so I was l really looking forward to this show.


I was in time to be properly humbled by Semple who “warmed up” with a sizzling, finger bleeding version of “Classical Gas” after playing  the bluesy “Hard Times.”


His set  was heavy on covers, interspersed with a few originals soaked in blazing , fiery fretwork and soulful vocals.


 He has released a couple new CDs  including a tribute To Gordon Lightfoot and played stripped down Lightfoot classics like “ If You Could Read My Mind, which highlighted his acoustic guitar.


 He was playing a solo show, but made his acoustic guitar sound like several.


 Even more impressive than his  guitar playing was his soulful tenor voice,  which was soaked in R and B influences.


 The set focussed heavily on covers including the Gordon Lightfoot songs and a particularly soulful version of “Under the Boardwalk and “Stand By Me” which  let Semple show off his falsetto.

 Bu his blazing fretboard work  throughout humbled all of the guitarists in the audience, sweltering in the sun or refreshing themselves in the beer garden.

 He ended on a gospel note  with “Lord Have Mercy.”


Calgary’s Rondell Roberts band provided the jazz portion of  the afternoon thanks to plenty of trumpet and saxophone, but with a few pop covers from the ’80s, a touch of reggae and  a lot of soulful vocals.


Their laid back groove, throbbing bass and understated guitar was perfect for a sunny Saturday afternoon.

The played quite a few originals, but also added  ’80s moments including covers of Terence Trent D’Arby’s “Wishing Well,” and Lionel Richie’s “ All Night Long.”

 They also added some  reggae covers, before making way for Satellite and the Harpoonist, Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer’s Shawn Hall’s new project.


Rondell Roberts at the Coulee Blues Festival, Aug. 28. Photo by Richard Amery

The trio including Shawn Hall on Harp, keyboards and vocals, percussionist Theo Vincent from the Boom Booms and Blue Man Group/ King Missile III veteran Bradford Reed on percussion and a home made instrument called a pencilina. Reed thumped out a bass line on his pencilina, which looked like a gutted steel guitar, and tapped out rhythm on a few other strings.


 They focussed on songs from their new EP as well as on jams on a few revamped Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer songs.

This was all about the rhythm and strange, alien sounds Hall squeezed out of his harp with the help of a few guitar effects units and  synthesizers.


 They had a long jam on the Harpoonist and the axe Murderer’s “Mama In the Backseat.”


 The trio played a hypnotic hour set  powered by percussion , relentless rhythm and strange sounds.

 Unfortunately I missed Kat Danser’s closing set due to other commitments.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Bradford Reed playing with Satellite and the Harpoonist at the Coulee Blues Festival, Aug. 28. Photo by Richard Amery
Last Updated ( Thursday, 02 September 2021 14:18 )
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