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Free the Cynics return to the Slice with UK flavoured alternative rock

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Calgary alternative rock band Free The Cynics returned to rock the Slice, Friday, April 21.


Rich Paxton of Free the Cynics at the Slice, April 21.  Photo by RichardAmery

 They have a new album, ‘Bloodlines”  coming out  in June , so were playing all of the singles from that including “Neon Ballroom,” “ Same Old Dance” and the latest and show highlight “Dollarama Prima Donna.” 

 They wear their influences on their sleeve reflecting a lot of UK Alternative rock bands like Fontaines DC,  The Murder Capital, Idles and Sports Team, and ’90s acts like Blur.


 They had a lot of  loud riffs and a overall wet, damp, slightly oppressive and foggy feel to their sound, but maintained catchy heavy rock hooks and a rock solid groove.

 Frontman Rich Paxton  showed his powerful voice.


 They wound down their set with “Same Old Dance” and   one of their upcoming singles “Start a War” and ended with an older, catchy number, “ High At Work.”

— By Richard Amery, L.a. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Friday, 28 April 2023 18:50 )

Bands as Bands play Blondie, the Ramones and Me First and thew Gimme Gimmies

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Bands as bands is always a fun show, because it gives local bands to take s step outside themselves and  just be another band.

 A long awaited rescheduled show returned to the owl acoustic lounge, Friday, April 21.


Tyson Wiebe in Bands as bands as part of me First and the Gimme Gimmes at the owl Acoustic Lounge, April 21. Photo by RichardAmery

 I missed the  Blondie tribute, but I was in time for an entertaining Ramones tribute. I didn’t recognize any of the members.

They put an interesting twist on the Ramones original punk rock music with talented females playing the roles of frontman Joey Ramone and drummer Tommy Ramone as they were focusing on the first four Ramones albums, and two big bearded guys playing the roles of Dee Ramone and Johnny Ramone.

 They were dressed in identical black leather jackets and horizontal white and black striped T-Shirts and Ramones style wigs, which ended up being dropped mid set.


 They dug deep but also fit in the “hits.”


  They opened with Blitzkrieg Bop” and my favourite “Beat on the Brat” and “Cretin Hop.” They dug a little deeper for “Judy is a Punk.”

A Ramones tribute in Bands as bands  at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, April 21. Photo by RichardAmery

“ Sheena Is a Punk Rocker” was a highlight and it wouldn’t be a Ramone tribute without “ I Wanna Be Sedated”. They wound down with a couple of their more popular covers , my favourite “ Do You Wanna Dance,” and  “Ended with “ Surfin Bird.”


 Me first and the Gimmie Gimmies are made for a bands as bands night as they make their bones turning hits into hot punk covers.


 Ryland Moranz got to go back to his pop punk roots on guitar. Tyson Wiebe  was a charismatic frontman and Mickey Hayward  provided the backbeat. I didn’t recognize the other two members.


 The band, dressed in almost identical Hawaiian  shirts, spanned the decades and genres ranging from  ’50s pop to ’90s country.

 They did a quick sound  check of “ Take me Home Country Roads” and took off from there.


 They did a great cover of Me First and the Gimmie Gimmies’ version of the Dixie Chicks’ “ Goodbye Earl.”

 They went back to the ’70s for  “Leaving On A Jet Plane,” and  even Elton John’s “Rocket Man.”

— By Richard Amery, L.A Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Friday, 28 April 2023 18:47 )

James Gordon brings humour and multi-instrumental prowess to Folk Club

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Folk musician James Gordon was at play like he was in his own living room at the Lethbridge Folk Club, Saturday, April 22. A good sized crown sat comfortably  in the Lethbridge College Cave as the Guelph based folk musician  bounced between reading passages from his two new books to playing tin whistle, guitar and a long necked banjo.

James Gordon playing the Lethbridge Folk Club, April 22. Photo by Richard Amery

 I arrived as he was name dropping Lethbridge and Cypress Hills in  his song “ Lonesome Cowboy’s Lament.”


 He has a lot of music to choose from over a career that has spanned four decades, so he played a little bot of everything including music from his  latest CD “When I Stayed Home“ and some of the songs from the soundtrack he recorded for his novel “ The Ark of the Oven Mitt.”


He flipped through the pages of a notebook for the lyrics and chords to play an audience request for some songs from his ’90s folk band Tamarack.


He showed his environmental side on “ This Canoe Runs on Water.”


 He played tin whistle on a song which he sang a cappella.


 Gordon told a few stories about working for  CBC Radio show “Basic Black,” where he would listen to Arthur Black’s interviews and write a song based on one of his interviews.


“You had to listen to the show, I got paid to listen,” he laughed, before playing a quirky song called “Sweaters for Penguins” about a group of ladies deciding to knit sweaters for penguins to help protect them from oil spills. He thought that was his only  knitting song, but remembered another one, which he played.


 He told another story about the “ the same turkey dinner’ served at public function he was hired to play at.


In honour of Earth Day, He played one of many environment themed numbers which had a waltz feel.

He played a lot of his funniest songs including “ I’m Wearing Rover Now.”

Gordon ended on a serious, more tender note  with “Fall And Rise” from the “Ark of the Oven Mitt.”


 The next Lethbridge Folk Club show is Sunday, May 14 at 7 p.m. with Lynne Hanson. Karen Romanchuk opens the show.  Tickets are $35, $30 for members and $10 for students.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Friday, 28 April 2023 15:08 )

All Time Everywhere show how Banff rocks

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All The Time Everywhere brought a lot of energy to the Slice, Wednesday, April 25.


All Time Everywhere at the Slice, April 26. photo by Richard amery

 I missed openers Trismegistus, but was in time for an adrenalized show of pop punk and emo from the Banff based combo who blended emo with Foo Fighters anthem rock, a lot of ’90s pop-punk and a touch of classic Bad Religion style punk rock.


 They played a tight set with catchy riffs, gang vocals and very cool multi-part vocal harmonies.


 Most of their music was firmly in the realm of punk, emo and pop punk, but they ended with a few songs with riffs with a more metal edge.

— by Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Friday, 28 April 2023 14:48 )

Geomatic Attic showcases Emily Triggs, Matt Patershuk and Carter Felker’s music

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 The Geomatic Attic hosted an intimate evening of eclectic  country inspired songwriters, Thursday, April 27.

I caught the second set from Emily Triggs, Matt Patershuk and CarterFelker, who were playing a songwriter in the round style show for an enraptured audience seated around tables, cabaret style.


The second set was about road testing new songs and playing  inspirations.


Emily Triggs, Matt Patershuk and Carter Felker playing thew Geomatic Attic, April 27. Photo by Richard Amery

 Patershuk, standing centre stage, started of the set by talking about how he’ll pick up song ideas after overhearing conversations, noting he was listening to a couple  farmers talk and heard the line, “‘there‘s only two things I know, blowing horses and crazy women,” which inspired one of his newest songs. He had a soothing baritone and a more traditional country feel to his music.

 Emily Triggs followed that up with a new, more rock and roll/ folk  song she wrote during Covid  called “Rough and Ready.”


Emily Triggs at the Geomatic Attic, April 27. Photo by Richard Amery

Carter Felker added earthy humour and some hot Chet Atkins inspired finger-picking for “ Francine, ” one of my favourite songs off  his latest album “ Even the Happy Ones are Sad.” He introduced it by saying he came from a long line of degenerate gamblers.


Patershuk was in an inspirations mood, so his next song was Arthur Big Boy Cruddup’s “ That’s All Right Mama,” made famous by Elvis, so he talked a little about Elvis and Sun Studios.


 Triggs talked abut visiting Las Vegas with her beau during the pandemic and bonding over  how much  they hated it, and played a roots rocker about nuclear tourism or people going to Las Vegas in the ’50s to watch nuclear  bomb tests from their hotel rooms.


 Felker cracked a few jokes and got on board the tribute train to play Leonard Cohen’s “ Tonight I’ll be Fine.”


Patershuk observed how much  fun it was to work with other musicians, and agreed with Triggs’  observances of hating las Vegas, but opted to play “another song about cars’, and played “a song about the worst sports car ever made— the Cutlass Supreme.” He tipped his hat to each of the other performers after their songs

Triggs wound thing down by talking about how  she thought her song about her love for the United States would get her in trouble, but “ I Love You America” just  expressed her love for the people and landscape.


Carter Felker talked about a songwriting group that shrank down to just himself and Matt Patershuk, called it a night and took a seat in the  audience after playing a new song about hating work, “ that would take the audience into the bleakness of my mind.”


 I didn’t catch the title but it did have the epic line  “ I was robbed when God didn’t make me a dog.”


Patershuk ended his part of the songwriter in the round  by leading the audience in  a sing-along of  Leadbelly’s “ Good Night Irene.”


 Triggs brought the show to a close with another one of her roots rockers and latest single “ MIddletown.”

— by Richard Amery, L.A. beat Editor

Last Updated ( Sunday, 30 April 2023 10:56 )
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