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Nature Of play laid back folk rock

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A good sized crowd  at the Owl Acoustic Lounge enjoyed some laid back folk rock courtesy of Sherwood Park indie rock band Nature Of, Nov. 15. Nature Of played a laid back set of folk rock, Nov. 15. Photo by Richard Amery

They played  acoustic based indie rock music along the lines of the Shins  with some ambient guitar solos  soothing vocals and a laid back beat.

 There was plenty of switching instruments as the band's second time in Lethbridge appeared to be a success.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 26 November 2014 11:55 )

Blackberry Wood play vibrant jazz and gypsy folk

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 Victoria based jazz/ gypsy  folk band Blackberry Wood never get the audience they deserve in Lethbridge, even on  Nov. 21 when they returned to the Slice to perform for maybe 25 people. Even when there was no real competition on the night.

Regardless, frontman Kris Wood Blackberry Wood returned to the Slice, Nov 21. Photo by Richard Amerybacked by stand up bassist Shannon, banjo picker/ accordionist Noosha and special guest saxophonist Cory Sweet from High Society, had a lot of fun on stage through an evening of upbeat, toe tapping jazz influenced weirdness.

 Noosha complemented  the band's more jazz and gypsy side with her banjo and added a some cabaret style accordion for a couple of numbers.

 For extra weirdness sand rhythm, Woods used “ the contraption,” which included a variety of rhythmic accoutrements plus a theramin which Wood and Shannon used to add strange sounds and even a bullhorn which he used on one song.

 One of my favourites, their cover of Tom Waits’  “ I Don’t Want to Grow Up” was an early highlight of their first set.

 Throughout, Cory Sweet provided  some, well, sweet  sax lines and u toe-tapping  jazz riffs. 

 He and Noosha wandered into the audience near the  end of the set in the middle of  their songs  “The Strong Man” and the Russian Bears,” while Wood got the audience to applaud which one they enjoyed more.
 For the second set, they added more of a jazz and gypsy flavour and put their on stamp on  the Cure’s hit “The Love Cats.”

They played another crowd favourite, the Star Wars Cantina Theme for the second set as well as explored their pirate sides for another song.

— By Richard Amery, L.A Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 26 November 2014 11:36 )

Tom Jackson excited to help food banks with the Huron Carole

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No matter how bad you think your life is, there is always someone who is worse off.Tom Jackson brings the Huron Carole back to Lethbridge, Dec. 2. Photo by Richard Amery
 That is what inspired singer/ songwriter and actor Tom Jackson to start the Huron Carole back in 1987.
“ We’re revisiting the first Huron Carole because people don’t really know the story behind it and it is such an enchanting story,” Jackson rumbled over the phone getting ready for this winter’s tour, which begins in Victoria on Nov. 30 and which comes to Lethbridge to the Yates Theatre, Dec. 2. He is  bringing back some familiar faces on this year’s annual tour to raise money for food banks in  each community he plays all across the country.

The show features familiar faces Beverly Mahood and  Shannon Gaye, who have been performing  with the Huron Carole for many years, plus One More Girl, Britt and Carly McKillip and their dad Tom, who is also Jackson’s musical director.

“ The first half of the show is the story of the event through song. The second half is the actual Christmas concert portion of the show,” he summarized adding they won’t cover exactly the same songs played during the first event.

“ I don’t actually remember what I played at the show  27 years ago,” he continued adding he clearly remembers the event that inspired him to start the Huron Carole.

“I remember I was living in a little hole in the wall in Toronto and I was looking out the window and saw a man. I decided to help him. It was 1 or 2 in the morning and I saw a bundle in the street and saw a group of people approaching it — the kind of people who when they approach and you cross the street to avoid. But instead I decided to help. I never did get his name,” he said adding he discovered the bundle in the street was actually a man and steered him to the closest soup kitchen and then realized how much help the soup kitchen itself needed.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 26 November 2014 11:16 ) Read more...

Girls rock this week

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Girls rock this week.
 There are a couple of female powered acts happening this week as live music  gives way to Christmas music.

 Zojo Black release their new CD this week. Photo by Richard AmeryFirst of all, Victoria based metal band Unleash the Archers return to the Slice, Nov. 26 with Caste of Shadows and Order of Chaos.
 Unleash the Archers are currently touring the United States in support of their 2012 EP “Defy The Sky.” Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the door which begins at 9 p.m.

On the more pop side of the musical spectrum, Juno nominated Vancouver based indie-rock band Mother Mother return to Lethbridge to play Average Joes with USS, Dec. 2.
They have a  couple catchy earworms of singles “Let’s Fall in Love” and “Infinitesimal” off their 2012 CD “Sticks,” but also have a brand new hit on their hands with “Get Out The Way,” which was released to radio in July. They have just released a new album out called “Very Good Bad Thing.” The show begins at 9 p.m. Tickets cost $35 in advance.

There are a lot of excellent local shows including local blues rock band Zojo Black’s CD release party at the Slice, Nov. 28 with special guests the Silvertuns. Another excellent local rock show features the New Weather Machine with Mormon Girls and Swift Current progressive rock band the Moon Runners at the Slice, Nov. 29. And Who’s Yer Daddy return to the Front Row pub, Nov. 29 to rock the joint.

 Local experimental rock band Toques and Beards play the Owl Acoustic Lounge the same night with the Yeah Dads and the Broads.

There are also a couple of excellent country gigs including country rock band Jo Hikk returning to Casino Lethbridge Friday and Saturday.
The Old Man River Band are playing a Movember show at the Lethbridge College Cave on  Nov. 27.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 25 November 2014 15:42 ) Read more...

Mother Mother tackle the beast for major label debut

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Mother Mother are excited to tackle the beast on tour for their brand new fifth album and major label debut  Very  Good Bad Things.”
“It’s a bit of a beast. It’s bigger and bolder and badder than ever before,” said vocalist / keyboardist Jasmin Parkin.

The band plays Average Joes, Dec. 2 with USS.

The  five piece, Juno nominated Vancouver based indie pop band  includes Ryan Guldemond, his sister Molly Guldemond, Jasmin Parkin, Jeremy Page and Ali Siadat. They rose to indie acclaim with their first two albums Touch Up (2007) and O My Heart (2008) while the nation took notice. Their next two albums Eureka (2011) and The Sticks (2012) delivered the Top 5 radio hits “The Stand”, “Bit By Bit” and “Let’s Fall In Love,” making the band the second most aired alternative act in Canada in 2012 and 2013.
 They are excited to be supported by Universal Records.Mother Mother return to Lethbridge , Dec. 2. Photo Submitted

“We’re still in the honeymoon stages of the relationship, but it’s been incredible actually. We’ve never had a team like this to support us,” she continued.

She noted producer Gavin Brown, who has produced  the Tragically Hip and Metric, gave the new record a more of a rock edge.

“ There are lots of little sounds and vocal harmonies on it. It’s still got a lot of synth on it, but there are rock undertones,” she said adding the band didn’t feel much pressure for recording their major label debut.

“We didn’t feel too much pressure. We wanted to go in and make the best album that the songs would allow,” she continued adding Ryan Guldemond wrote the lyrics for the album as usual.
“ Lyrics are Ryan’s domain. He builds the bare bones and we build around them,” she said adding the band builds their music around them.

 While she plays keyboards on the album, she noted  vocals are her primary contribution.

“ Vocals is what I went to school for. I love playing piano, but vocals are my first love. They are a challenge, but they are  good challenge. They’re how I get to express myself,” she continued noting the band work a lot on vocal harmonies.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 25 November 2014 10:35 ) Read more...
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