Wednesday, August 31, 2005



Back in the day, I knew a guy. We called em Skitch (don't ask). He was a strange sort, wore a Peter Newman Greek fisherman's cap, had a pet rat named Ghengis and spent a lot of time listening to the Jazz Butcher. What's Skitch got to do with this year's Pop Montreal fest? (Or the proverbial price of tea in China?) not a ton, except for this. See, Skitch loved Peter Gabriel. In fact, the first time I heard Games Without Frontiers was when he played it for me. Funny thing, though, he thought the famous breathy, French background singer's chant (you know the one: "Jeux...sans...FRON-tee-airs") was actually in English. Specifically, he thought the sexy ladies were sing-chanting "She'" It's not my favourite misheard lyric (ask me some day about my summer camp roommate who'd made up entirely new verses to The Grape's of Wrath's Piece of Mind) but it does come close. Anyway, Pop Montreal is going to be very POP-u-lar this year. Organizers think there'll be an overflow of volunteers. The associated Film Pop film festival and Pop and Politics conferences seem to have interesting lineups and there's a new PucePop indie swap meet to check out over at Les Fusiliers Mont-Royal. Just like last year, the schedule of music is full of tough choices. Wednesday night I'll likely be volunteering to work a door somewhere and I'll tell you about Thursday later. As for the rest of the week... If you're not at the Dirtbombs show Friday you're going to regret it...maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow but some day soon and for the rest of your life...seriously. Saturday is Ted Leo and the Rx-er-cists and Sunday Exclaim! coverboys Cuff the Duke join Matt Mays in opening for The Kings of Leon. (Your scorecard of shows may, of course, vary). Now on Thursday, everyone's going to be heading out to the interpol show. I know I know I know: "I love them so much!!! They're so cool!!! I want Carlos D to give me herpes!!!" Blah, blah, blah. I'm going to be checking out the Kelp Records showcase at Les Minots and you should too. Get there early, though, 'cause if you show up late, you'll miss Ottawa's rock n' roll answer to Hagrid the Giant (right), Flecton's Michel (Meesh) Jette (uh, y'know, left). Meesh used to play guitar with Ottawa's legendary Werbo. The first Flecton full length (Never Took a Wife) is a solo-ish effort featuring members of Califone and the Grifters. Listen to Truce is Stranger than Fiction (Go! Buy the Rekkid!) Truce is Stranger than Fiction is just a fine piece of art. The first time I heard it I got that "damn, how great is it that THIS guy's from Ottawa?" feeling. Then I remembered, I don't LIVE in Ottawa anymore. Look, a real tear. Pregnant Pause Forget Bear vs. Shark and get a ring side seat for "nancy boy" vs. "anti-intellectual" (FWIW, at least Carl's being a grown up...) Speaking of nasty spats, I've just recently started paying close (ok...SOME) attention to the CBC lockout. Turns out some of the folks of CBC Ottawa are keeping a blog, and posting daily podcasts featuring great music (Jim Bryson, Andrew Vincent, The Acorn) from the picket line. And WHAT a picket line. Check out the lovely and talented Ms. Julie Delaney as she tries to shame Robert Rabinovich into making an honest woman out of her. You may not be surprised to hear that Rick Mercer has a blog. What may surprise you is how funny it is. If I had a Word of the Year award, I think I'd give it Chuck D's most recent addition to our language: Dumbassification. (Thanks, Mike)
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