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Blue Man Group mark another busy week

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This week is another busy one. Not only is L.A. Beat officially getting launched at the Slice, Oct. 10, but the Blue Man Group is performing at the Enmax Centre, Oct. 11. The Blueman group
L.A Beat has given away a pair of tickets and a Blue Man Group DVD to Matthew Graf  for being the first person to e-mail me with the correct answer to  the question “What are the names of the three groups performing at my launch party, Oct. 10 at the Slice and where are they from?” Rich Hope is originally from Edmonton, though he is based out of Vancouver now, the Manvils are from Vancouver and the Ramblin’ Ambassadors are from Calgary.

In addition to that there are several really choice shows happening this week.
Henotic is outdoing themselves this week with Hamilton poet/rocker B.A., Johnston returning, Oct. 7 with Shotgun Jimmy and the Moby Dicks. They’ll play the main room for a $10 cover while upstairs, the Wind Whistles and the Paper Tigers perform.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 07 October 2009 15:22 ) Read more...

Stagger and Zeus were kings of Sunday night

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 Leeroy Stagger and the Wildflowers played a wicked show at the Slice, Sept. 27. Photo By Richard AmeryThere were a couple of sweet shows on Sept. 28, both of which started early.
 I only caught the end of Leeroy Stagger and the Wildflowers’ set of energetic country rock tinged folk which approximately 50 people were enjoying. They heard several tracks from his latest CD, “Everything is Real” including “Red Bandana,” and one of his best known songs “Just in Case,” plus  a few choice covers.
 Stagger’s band including lead guitarist Kevin Kane and bassist Tyson Maiko, played extremely tight and Stagger’s voice was in fine form. He brought local bluesman Paul Kype on stage for a couple of electrifying numbers and opening act Patrick Brealey on stage for the encore.
Down a few blocks at Henotic, I caught the end of a set by a really cool Toronto blues influenced garage rock band called Zeus.
 Zeus ended a set at Henotic  with “That’s All.” Photo by Richard AmeryThey had harmonized vocals and some sweet and dirty harmonized guitars on a wild cover of Genesis’ “That’s All” which ended their set.
— By Richard Amery L.A. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 29 September 2009 15:31 )

Mason Rack band was fantastic

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On Sept. 26, the Mason Rack Band played a fabulous  show for a good sized crowd at the Slice. It is always an event and an entertaining time when this Australian guitar picker comes to play. This was the third time in about a year he has torn up the Slice and this time he had an enthusiastic crowd cheering him on.Local blues trio Fat Baby Jake were in fine form to open the show. Steve Keenan was on fire,  showing as many guitar faces as guitar licks. Fat Baby Jake’s Steve Keenan. Photo by Richard AmeryDarwin Romanchuk was solid behind the skins and David Popovitch held the groove down on bass.
Mason Rack takes a turn on drums. Photo by Richard AmeryBut the Mason Rack band mesmerized the full-house right from the start as frontman Mason Rack started it off by playing some intense mid-Eastern flavoured slide guitar while tapping out a cool delay-laden percussion progression on his guitar’s body, which was enhanced by the creative use of chimes attached to his mic stand. Then he tore the blues apart on the guitar and moulded the music into his baby in between joking with the crowd. As always, his first set ending dual drum solo was a hit during “Who Do You Love” which took him into the crowd, drumming on tables, chairs and a beer keg as well as on the drums alongside Joel “Thunderfoot” Purkess. New bassist Marcus Engel, from Winnipeg, played in the pocket and kept up with Rack’s intense energy. His second set was more rock flavoured  and included my favourite Rack original “Seen Her B4.”

— By Richard Amery L.A. Beat Editor


Last Updated ( Tuesday, 29 September 2009 15:18 )

Manvils carefully craft new music for Lethbridge visit

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With the help of Age of Electric and Limblifter’s Ryan Dahle acting as producer, Vancouver rock band the Manvils spent a solid year carefully crafting the songs for their new self titled CD. The Manvils along with Rich Hope and His Evil Doers and the Rambling Ambassadors will be playing the Slice, Oct. 10 and help officially launch L.A. Beat.
“The new CD was written over the span of two years,” explained Manvils’ frontman Mikey Manvil adding the band also trimmed down to a svelte three -piece rock and roll juggernaut (including bassist Greg Buhr and drummer Jay Koenderman and in the process added a more progressive rock feel to their energetic songs.The Manvils hit the Slice, Oct. 10.
“We hired Ryan Dahle because we wanted a producer who really fit in with the Manvils. That’s really important to us. We wanted someone we respected and who was willing to go to bat for us,” he continued.
“We wanted to transfer the live show to tape and catch that energy,” he observed adding the new music retains the ’60s era Who and Kinks feel while adding more elaborate textures to the tunes.
“ It was a completely different experience, He (Dahle) really challenged us. He was a real catalyst. It was stimulating and stress free,” Manvil enthused, observing the songs all clock in at under three minutes.
“That’s as about long as people want to hear so that’s what we aimed to keep them at. We made sure every phrase and each element of each song had a purpose,” he continued, adding crowd response has been very positive to the new music.
“It’s been really nice, people  really appreciated the songs right off.”
He works as spokesman for a new Vancouver based record label called Sandbag Records  which only handles three acts (Rich Hope, The Manvils and  Ryan Dahle) .
Last Updated ( Thursday, 15 October 2009 12:12 ) Read more...

Wooden Sky as southern Albertan roots

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While Wooden Sky vocalist/guitarist Gavin Gardiner has Southern Albertan roots, an Oct. 5 gig with Elliott Brood will be the first time he has brought his Toronto based indie-rock band to play Lethbridge.The Wooden Sky play Henotic, Oct. 5 with Elliott Brood.
“I grew up in Manitoba and I spent a lot of time going between Medicine Hat and Calgary to visit family,” Gardiner said adding the band is looking forward to beginning the new tour with Elliott Brood in Sudbury. They come to Henotic, Oct. 5
“I’ve never seen them before but I’ve heard nothing but good things,” he continued.
They are touring in support of their new CD, “If I Don’t Come Home, You’ll Know I’m Gone.”
 Gardiner along with bassist Andrew Wyatt, Vocalist/pianist and guitarist Simon Walker  and drummer Andrew Kekewich  and Cellist Anissa Hart have been playing in this incarnation of the band for two years.
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 29 September 2009 14:47 ) Read more...
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