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John Borra explores early punk and Alt country roots in new show and Cassettes in Common

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Toronto musician John Borra explores his roots  on his new CD, “Cassettes In Common.”

John Borra plays the Slice , Tuesday, Nov. 22. Photo Submitted

 Borra has a long history playing in the Toronto punk and roots rock scenes including a stint playing with Ian Blurton in Change of Heart in the ’90s.

 He noted it has been a while since he played Alberta.


“We opened for bands like The Tragically Hip and the Odds in Alberta . I’ve always been a fan of Alberta,” Borra said, adding the pandemic gave him to look back on some of his influences. So he put together “Cassettes In Common and took the opportunity to work with people like original Toronto punk band the Demics and Handsome Ned guitarist Steve Koch and  Michael Timmins of the Cowboy Junkies,  Blue Rodeo keyboardist Mike Boguski, original Blue Rodeo drummer Cleave Anderson, Doughboys/Rusty guitarist Scott McCullough, fiddler extraordinaire Miranda Mulholland, and Borra’s longtime friends and collaborators Sam Ferrara and Johnny MacLeod.


They worked on tracks by the Demics, The Hacks and renown solo artists like Ron Sexsmith, Kyp Harness Bob Snider and Art Bergmann’s ‘Sleep”.


Osyron to open Tyrants of Chaos CD release party with “Momentous” metal

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Calgary based progressive metal band Osyron hope their Lethbridge debut will be a “Momentous” occasion when they open local metal favourites Tyrants of Chaos’ CD release party for ’ “Relentless Thirst For Power” at the Place on Friday, Nov.18.

Osyron are starting a tour in support of their newest CD  “ Momentous, ” which they released Nov. 1.


Osyron play the Place , Nov. 18. Photo by Monika Deviat

They are planning on playing some of that and tracks from their previous three albums they released during the pandemic.


“We’re 100 per cent pleased with it. It’s our best one so far. Like  any musician, we hope our newest will be better than the last,” said frontman Reed Alton, noting lyrically  the album is about personal struggle, trials, and personal battles and showcases the superb musicianship of bandmates — guitarists Krzysztof Stalmach (Solar Guitars) and Bobby Harley (Solar Guitars), bassist Tyler Corbett and drummer Cody Anstey.


“Covid was definitely an inspiration. Being stuck at home because of Covid restrictions definitely left a lot of time for introspection,” Alton said, adding they released three albums during the pandemic and then got to work on “Momentous.”


They play progressive metal and symphonic metal like Dream Theatre, Symphony X, Evergrey and Winterson, with a little bit of  Queensryche .


“ I listen to Queensryche but they other guys don’t,” Alton said.


Osyron began writing music for a new album in 2021 and started recording drums in late 2021 at OCL Studios. Recording continued at CRM Sound in Calgary in early 2022 focusing on vocals, guitars, and percussion while the backing orchestration was composed and recorded at Sole Audio. The full album was also mixed at Sole Audio and the mastering was done by Maor Appelbaum.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 16 November 2022 15:53 ) Read more...

Everything from metal to classical music and comedy happening this week

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It was great to be away for a week, but it’s good to be back because the fun doesn’t stop in Lethbridge.

 There is something for everyone this week happening  from metal to blues and a lot more.


Good Time Charlie playing the Place, Nov. 10. They play Honkers Pub, Friday, Nov. 18. Photo by RichardAmery

 The week begins with Luke James Bruce hosting the open mic at Mojos Pub, on Monday, Nov. 14.


 The Slice has their usual busy week beginning with ’60s influenced folk rock musician John Hewitt, who hits the stage, Tuesday, Nov. 15 at 9 p.m.

 Scott Davidson and Friends bring back mid week music to the Slice stage on Wednesday, Nov. 16.

 And Fawns hosts a Queer open mic at the Slice on Thursday.


Down the street Samantha Martin and Delta Sugar plus special guest Steve Marriner play the Southminster United  Church for a Geomatic Attic and Lethbridge Jazz  and Blues Festival co-presentation.  The show begins at 8 p.m. Doors open at 7 p.m.Tickets are $45 for adults, $25 for students.


Friday night is all about metal as The Slice features Crown the Jester on Friday, Nov. 18 and features Saskatoon metal band Despite the Reverence and SI on Saturday.

Tyrants of Chaos rock the Place down the street on Friday, Nov. 18 with the CD release party for their latest CD“ Relentless Thirst For Power.” Calgary progressive metal band Osyron open the show at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20 at the door, $15 in advance.


Get your mind off  the albino brain chiggers ( ie snow)  covering the ground by getting into a surfing mindset with local surf band the Atomicos plus Foster Dollis at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Friday, Nov. 18.

 The Owl stays in a more acoustic mode on Saturday with Wendy Colby, Kevin Giron, Eric Bret West and Tyson Ray Borsboom. Admission to both shows is by donation.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 28 December 2022 10:59 ) Read more...

Samantha Martin and Delta Sugar bringing blues and soul back to Lethbridge

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Toronto based blues and soul musicians Samantha Martin and Delta Sugar make a long awaited return to Lethbridge, Nov. 17 at the Southminster United Church in support of their latest Juno nominated  CD “ The Reckless One.”

Martin is going all out for the Geomatic Attic  and Lethbridge Jazz and Blues Festival co-presentation as she is bringing a10 piece band plus Monkeyjunk’s Steve Marriner to open the show and make a special guest appearance on stage with the orchestra.

“We didn't actually win,” she  chuckled.


“We were in the top five,” she continued adding their last CD “ Run To Me”  was also nominated for a Juno.

Samantha Martin and Delta Sugar return to Lethbridge, Nov. 17  at the Southminster United Church. Photo by Richard Amery

“ This is our second time being nominated for a Juno. that was for our last record “Run To Me” that was in 2018,” she said, packing for a quick two week tour that begins in Saskatoon, Nov. 13.


 The Lethbridge show was delayed because of Covid, so Martin and the band are excited to be back on the road, even if she is touring while 21 weeks pregnant.

“It’s definitely been a long time coming. We were able to do a little bit of touring . And when I say a little bit, I mean we  did a lot more touring than I think a lot of other people did, but it’s still not what we would consider to be normal. But this tour was supposed to take place in January and February, 2022, so earlier this year and we had to postpone it because at the time Omicron was a big thing. Some of the presenters were concerned the mandates would come back and the lockdowns would come back into effect so we decided it would be safer to postpone, ” she said.


“And so this tour has been a long time coming and we’re really excited to bring a 10 piece band to Lethbridge and on this tour.

 The band includes electric guitarist Curtis Chaffey, bassist Ian MacEwan, drummer Will Fisher, Jeff Heisholt on organ, piano, background vocalists/ co-vocalists Sherie Marshall and Tafari Anthony,  trombonist Emily Ferrell,  trumpet player Brian Walters and saxophonist Andrew Moljgun. 


Steve Marriner , who plays with Monkeyjunk as well as Colin James and who is touring in support of his new album “Hope Dies Last,” will be opening the show and plays a couple songs as a special guest.


“It’s a big band, plus I’m pregnant, so it’s really a 10 and a half piece band plus a special guest,” she laughed, adding she doesn’t know what to expect touring while pregnant.


“Well we’re about to find out. I was pregnant in the summer . In August we did about 10 days in between Grand Prairie, Alberta and Salmon Arm. We did a  couple festival appearances and a few club shows though the mid- week. And I’m not gonna lie, it was pretty crazy, because I was doing all the driving and I had wicked morning sickness that seemed to last all day long. So it was a little tough, but the morning sickness has subsided and I feeling a little more energetic these days and of course I won’t be doing the driving on this tour. I’m going to kick back and pretend to be a diva for a little bit— the star of the show doesn't drive the van on this tour,” she laughed.


She has known Steve Marriner for a long time and used to be roommates with him, so she is excited to bring him along on tour.

“Steve and I have been friends for quite some time. Obviously the blues scene in Canada is spread out, but it’s pretty small and I’ve known Steve for a quite some time,” she said.

“I lived with him as roommates, him Curtis and I lived in a place for a couple of months together. We’ve been friends for a very, very long time. And he is actually on the ‘Run to Me ’ record.  He played keys on that album for us and he fills in for Curtis on guitar when Curtis isn’t able to make a show. So he’s been sort of an an honourary Delta Sugar member for a long time,“ she continued.

“And of course, he’s won a gajillion awards with Monkeyjunk and Colin James and he played with Matt Anderson and he’s put out a record that’s also nominated for a Juno this year called ‘Hope Dies Last.’ And so he’s out promoting that record for himself, so we decided to bring him along and he’s going to chip in with the driving,” she said.

Last Updated ( Sunday, 13 November 2022 15:20 ) Read more...

Bros. Landreth play laid back multi-textured music for Geomatic Attic

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The Geomatic Attic wound up a busy October with a sold out Bros. Landreth show, Monday, Oct. 24.


The Bros. Landreth at the Geomatic Attic, Oct. 24. Photo by Richard Amery

 One half of Winnipeg duo Slow Leaves,  Grant Davidson opened the show with some pretty picking.

 He told some stories about living at home with his wife who gives him space to create  while doing a few chores around the house including washing the dishes.

 That prefaced his song “Sink Full of Dishes.”


 When he wasn’t playing beautifully  picked acoustic guitar lines, he  drew from the well of  easygoing soulful ’70s soft rock.

Joey Landreth joined him at the end of his set to add some hot lead guitar.

The Bros. Landreth continued in the laid back vein.


 Joey Landreth had  a pedal board with at least a dozen pedals which he used to created a variety of textures. So there was plenty of delay and vibrato.

 The trio, featuring guitarist/ vocalist Joey Landreth, bassist David Landreth and drummer Roman Clark played a lot of their most recent CD “Come Morning.”

“Drive All Night” was one of the highlights of a really laid back, easygoing set of multi-layered and textured music.


 They played four songs in a row before  addressing the sold out enraptured audience.

Bassist Dave Landreth bared his soul about his struggles with mental health after releasing their successful debut album and touring the  world with it.


He thanked his brother and family for helping him through those dark days.

 He sang a Jonathan Byrd song to follow that up before picking up the tempo a little.

— By Richard Amery, L. A. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 01 November 2022 09:58 )
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