Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E014

Goodbye 2009, Hello 2010.

Tonight on Halifax Is Burning I performed not one, but two countdowns - the Top 5 Local Singles of 2009 and the Top 10 Local Releases of 2009.

These are all basically based on iPod spins. Did I listen to these songs/albums a boat load over the past twelve months? Hell yes. Hence, the lists.

Unfortunately, the servers are still down over at CKDU, so downloading the show from the archive still isn't a possibility until the new year when the techs are back online. So, in lieu of that, I put together a sweet download for you. Get it while it's hot.

Track List
TOP 5 SINGLES of 2009
#5 - Milks & Rectangles - Slander Debunked
#4 - Prospector's Union - Valley Neighbors
#3 - TGTGG - Gettin' Dirty In The Afterlife
#2 - Kestrels - Ridicule
#1 - The First Aid Kit - New York City

TOP 10 RELEASES of 2009
#10 - The Slate Pacific - Safe Passage
#9 - Myles Deck & The Fuzz - Police Cops 7"
#8 - A History Of - Action In The North Atlantic
#7 - Share - Slumping In Your Murals
#6 - The Olympic Symphonium - More In Sorrow Than In Anger
#5 - Mardeen - Single #1
#4 - Bloodsport - Goodbye To The Holy Mountain
#3 - Dog Day - Concentration
#2 - Cousins - Out On Town
#1 - York Redoubt - self titled

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E013 - CHRISTMAS SPECIAL!

Well, the Christmas Holidays are upon us, and I'm sitting in my parents' basement in Sluice Point so I wasn't around to do my show this week. Luckily, I found an awesome fill-in, my good friend Jean-Paul Joseph Marc André à Billy à Michel sur Armand!

Not only did he do an awesome version of hosting the first ever Halifax Is Burning Christmas Special, he also debuted a bunch of new holiday tunes by bands like The Superfantastics & The Heavy Blinkers. And on top of all that, he even snuck his own Christmas tune into the mix!

The CKDU archives are still down for now, so I've hosted this show on my own personal server as a Christmas gift to all the dedicated listeners out there in radio/internet land.

And as a bonus gift, I've also included a download link to
Jean-Paul Joseph Marc André à Billy à Michel sur Armand's soon-to-be classic Christmas ditty, "A Whole Mess of Lobsters."


December 22, 2009
(right click, "save as," send to Santa!)

Track List
The Superfantastics - Do They Know It's Christmas?
The Heavy Blinkers - Silence Your Drum
Tom Fun Orchestra - Merry Christmas From Me To You
Rich Aucoin - Oh My God!
Death by Nostalgia - Carol of the Bells
Jean-Paul Joseph Marc André à Billy à Michel sur Armand - A Whole Mess of Lobsters
BA Johnston - BA Johnston Sings A Christmas Song
The Superfantastics - Star of Christmas
Mike O'Neil - Skating
Old Folks Home - Frosty The Snowman
Kyle Evans - A Wonderful Christmastime
Hoop Dreams - Under A Christmas Star
The O By Gollies - God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
Quiet Parade - What Child Is This?
Carmen Townsend - O Come All Ye Faithful
Wintersleep - We Three Kings


Jean-Paul Joseph Marc André à Billy à Michel sur Armand - A Whole Mess of Lobsters

Friday, December 18, 2009

Heavy Blinkers Christmas Song/Video

One of Halifax's quintessential mainstays, The Heavy Blinkers, have just released a new Christmas song about the little drummer boy, complete with a really cool video.

Download the mp3 HERE.

Watch the awesome video here:

Recently named one of "The Greatest Bands You've (Probably) Never Heard' by Spin magazine (July 2009), The Heavy Blinkers' long awaited new record, Health, includes contributions from renowned artists such as Sondre Lerche(Astralwerks) and Sean O'Hagan of the High Llamas (Drag City). The album will be released in March, 2010.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E012

Unfortunately, some servers are down at the ol' station - so I couldn't put up this week's episode for download.

But if you didn't listen to it live on the radio (which, PS, you should have), my friend Leah Hassin joined me in studio to talk about this:


Exclusive: Joel Plaskett Confirms Thrush Hermit Reunion
12/14/2009 By Vish Khanna

After a weekend rampant with speculation, Joel Plaskett has confirmed that his beloved former band, Thrush Hermit, will indeed be reuniting for a short string of dates in 2010.

Among the most respected and emulated artists to emerge during the mid-’90s Halifax pop explosion, bolstered by Sloan's Murderecords, Thrush Hermit featured Plaskett, Rob Benvie, Ian McGettigan and Cliff Gibb. When Gibb departed in 1999, drummer Benn Ross joined the Hermit to tour behind what was arguably their best record, Clayton Park.

Since the band's demise, Plaskett has gone on to a storied solo career, Benvie has dabbled in music, but is mostly immersed in writing as a novelist, and McGettigan has been playing on and producing records by others, most notably those of the Joel Plaskett Emergency.

In an Exclaim! exclusive, Plaskett answered questions about the reunion in an email interview this morning:

So, is there a Thrush Hermit reunion of any kind happening? If so, where and when will this take place?

Joel Plaskett: Yep! In March. Not sure if the dates are totally locked down yet but it's looking like Moncton, two nights in Halifax, Ottawa and two nights in Toronto. Maybe one more somewhere else in Ontario. Wish we could go out west but we gotta keep it brief.

What exactly prompted this particular reunion show/tour? Who initiated it?

JP: Rob may have brought it up first. We'd been batting it around casually for about a year, but we wanted to make sure the timing made sense.

Is this a one-off or is there any possibility that a tour or further collaboration might happen?

JP: As it stands, this is a one-off tour. We're all busy with our own agendas and we wanted to do this, so we are all pressing pause on our other lives to make it happen in March.

How do you feel about getting the band back together to play again?

JP: I'm super-excited to rock out with the boys again... and to play some serious riffs.

Here are all the Thrush Hermit reunion tour dates announced so far:

3/19 Halifax, NS - Paragon Theatre
3/20 Halifax, NS - Paragon Theatre
3/24 Peterborough, ON - The Historic Red Dog
3/25 Ottawa, ON - New Capital Music Hall
3/26 Toronto, ON - Lee's Palace
3/27 Toronto, ON - Lee's Palace

In celebration of this most awesome announcement, Leah and I hosted a Thrush Hermit marathon for the whole hour and played some sweet tracks from classic albums like 1995's Smart Bomb, 1997's Sweet Homewrecker, and 1999's Clayton Park. Shoulda been there.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Christmas Giveaway!

Halifax Is Burning is celebrating the holiday season by giving away two copies of A Company House Christmas, featuring some of Cape Breton's finest musical talent like Carmen Townsend, The Tom Fun Orchestra, Kyle Evans & more.

Track Listing
01. Carmen Townsend - O Come All Ye Faithful
02. Mike Lelievre - Up On The Rooftop
03. Steven MacDougall - Dollar Store Christmas
04. Carmen Townsend - Let It Snow
05. The Tom Fun Orchestra - How I Spent Christmas
06. Mike Lelievre feat. Colin Grant - God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
07. Buster & Sunday - Curoo Curoo
08. Carmen Townsend - Silent Night
09. Kyle Evans - A Wonderful Christmas Time
10. Steve Fifield - Bootlegger, Bootlegger
11. Bernie Simons - Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer
12. The Company House Choir - We Wish You A Merry Christmas

The album is being sold throughout the province, and is donating part of its profits to Christmas Daddies. Preview some of these tracks HERE.

You can win one of these cds TWO different ways:

#1 - Post a Youtube link to YOUR favorite Christmas song of all time on the blog in the comments section to win Copy #1
#2 - Listen to the show this Tuesday, December 15 from 6:30pm to 7:30pm for your chance to win Copy #2

It couldn't be easier!

Happy Holidays!

Congrats to Crafts For Kids!

Five days, eight shows and 40 bands later, crafts for kids was a smashing success raising $4000 to buy craft supplies and other fun stuff for kids at the IWK in Halifax.
Kudos to coordinator/organizer Lindsay Allain, and a big thanks to all the bands who volunteered their time for this event!

[The Fantods at Gus' Pub - Friday, December 11]

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E011

Go see these shows, help some kids make some crafts and take their mind of being in the hospital

December 9, 2009
(Right click, save as, include in email to Santa)

Track List
Rich Aucoin - Alive
Jenocide - Fashion Icon
The Fat Stupids - Sixteen
Myles Deck & The Fuzz - Lights Out Electric Co.
Stop Motion Massacre - Downtown's Dead
No Flyers Please - Moe
The Fantods - Left A Light On
The Stolen Minks - Viola Desmond
The First Aid Kit - New York City
The Bad Motels - Just Because I Don't Care
The Got To Get Got - Burn Yaletown Burn
The Numbered Head - Man Action
The Establishment - The Day We Hit The Coast (Thrush Hermit Cover)
The Lodge - World In me
Laura Peek & The Winning Hearts - Stand Right There

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Halifax is Burning For The Kids!


This week on the show, we'll be talking to Lindsay Allain who is the organizer of EIGHT shows happening in Halifax next week!

The ambitious project is all in an effort to raise money to buy art supplies for kids at the IWK.

What an awesome cause.

Tune in to hear not only a conversation with Lindsay about these great shows, but also tons of music by many of the bands listed on that poster above.

Tuesday 6:30pm - 7:30pm on CKDU 88.1 in Halifax.
Streaming live (and archived!) at www.ckdu.ca

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E010 (woo 10!)

Old man winter's here. What a bast.

December 1, 2009
(Right click, save as, listen to it with a cup of cocoa)

Track List
Brian Borcherdt - Torches
Postdata - Tobias Grey
kary - Better
Yellow Jacket Avenger - Hiding Out
Gamma Gamma Rays - Science
Alright Already - Do The Suburban
Myles Deck & The Fuzz - Lights Out, Electric Co.
Cuban Assassins - Dead Dead Dead
Mother Mother - O My Heart
La Strada - Orphan
Husband & Knife - Career Suicide
Cousins - Anxious
Rich Aucoin - Alive
Matthew Good - Last Parade

Monday, November 30, 2009

An open call for LOCAL Christmas recordings

I'm putting together a Christmas playlist for Halifax is Burning that will air near Christmas time later this month.

If you're in a Haligonian/Maritime band, and have any Christmas recordings, please send them my way.

Alternatively, if you have any local recordings of Christmas songs you think I could use that you'd be willing to share - that would be awesome too!

You can send any/all recordings to the show's email account: halifaxisburning@gmail.com

Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E09

Seriously, come to these shows.

November 24, 2009
(Right click, save as. effin' do it!)

Track List
Ghettosocks - Rock The Discotech
Shotgun Jimmie - You've Changed
Mardeen - New Fashioned
Jon McKiel - Yellow Raincoat
Klarka Weinwurm - Wood Stove Fires
Myles Deck & The Fuzz - Lights Out! Electric Co.
Myles Deck & The Fuzz - Healing Touch
The Cuban Assassins - I Want My Money
The Cuban Assassins - Dead Dead Dead
Kestrels - Ridicule
Glory Glory Man United - Hey You!
Gloryhound - Best I Can
Dog Day - Ritual
The Lodge - Forget The Silence
Gianna Lauren - The War of Love And Numbers
The Establishment - The Consumer

Halifax Is Burning GIVEAWAY tonight - Myles Deck & The Fuzz/Cuban Assassins scorching red 7"

Tonight, live in studio I'll be talking to members of Myles Deck & The Fuzz and The Cuban Assassins. We'll be talking about their new split 7" release, and GIVING ONE AWAY!
Call in to win. It's easy.

http://www.ckdu.ca streaming live.

Friday, November 20, 2009

...more like Yarmouth is Burning.

In the span of just one day, the Internet has been deluged with the most excellent of news and downloads from two of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia's most successful musical exports.

Brian Borcherdt (currently of Holy Fuck, previously of Burnt Black, Trephines, etc) has just released two records of old songs and demos on his newest label, Hand Drawn Dracula. The records are called Torches & The Ward Colorado Demos:

Recorded in Toronto, coastal Yarmouth of Nova Scotia, and in the mountains near Ward, Colorado, Torches includes home demos and unfinished album attempts from 2004-2006.

Hand Drawn Dracula is pleased to bring you 'Torches (& the Ward Colorado demos)', an intimate collection of songs, almost never released, by one of Canada's most devoted cultural navigators. They are finally out of his hands so that they may find their way into yours.

Download both records HERE.

Hand Drawn Dracula also posted news of Brian's latest video, While I Was Asleep, from his last record Coyotes.

Not without coincidence, Brian B is on tour right now here on the East Coast with label-mate, Julie Fader. They'll both be playing at The Paragon Theatre tomorrow night (Saturday) with Wax Mannequin and Rae Spoon.


Today, the world wide web found out that Wintersleep frontman, Paul Murphy, will be releasing a new record with his brother Mike at the end of January 2010 under the moniker Postdata.

You can download one free song from the record, and stream another two over on their new, almost-ready website.

These two announcements coming off an amazing Nova Scotia Music Week in Yarmouth makes me feel like I'm 15 and living in my parent's house on Surette's Island again.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Halifax Is Burning Presents:

Join the facebook group for both of these events:

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E08

November 17, 2009
(Right click, save as, yada yada yada...)

Track List
Radarfame - Parallax Error
The Hemingways - How To Make A Molotov Cocktail
Tongan Death Grip - Werewolf
Wax Mannequin - End of Me
Julie Fader - Flights
Brian Borcherdt - Scout Leader
Trephines - Coma
The Fat Stupids - Sixteen
Shotgun Jimmie - Mind Crumb
BA Johnston - Your Roomate's A Couchetard
Gianna Lauren - Bird's Eye View
Sam Ryan - White Ceiling
Kestrels - Houdini
Myles Deck & The Fuzz - Ayatollah

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E07


This picture of me, from the Sleepless Nights set on Friday at the Red Knight during NSMW, actually makes me look fatter than I am (honest!).

November 10, 2009
(Right click, save as, and send to your best Yarmouth buddy)

Track List
The Stanfields - Ship To Shore
Matt Mays - Digital Eyes
Gloryhound - Best I Can
A History Of Interview Segment!
A History Of - Action In The North Atlantic
A History Of - Strike It From The Lexicon
A History Of - National Tectonics
York Redoubt - I Said Slightly
A History Of - Munition Ships
Kestrels - Sailed On
Cousins - Out On Town
Cursed Arrows - Here In Time
Coco Love Alcorn - I Got A Bicycle

A Special Treat.

Don Adams, the guy who does the Car Bomb From The Heart show after Halifax Is Burning was sick this week, so I stuck around for an extra hour and played some tunes. I called the segment "Canada Is Burning" because I played some hot new Can-Con. If you're interested, you can download that hour of programming HERE.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Win tickets to the A History Of CD Release show and a copy of their new disc!

Tune into Halifax is Burning tonight from 6:30pm - 7:30pm and call in to win two tickets to A History Of's CD Release show which is happening this Saturday at Club 1668. Sharing the bill for this special occasion will be York Redoubt, Bad Vibrations and Cold Warps.

Plus, if you're the lucky winner, you'll also get a copy of A History Of's brand new CD, "Action In The North Atlantic."

Tune in tonight to win.

Halifax Is Burning
88.1FM in Halifax
www.ckdu.ca streaming live online

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E06

Heading to Yarmouth for 6 days - Nova Scotia Music Week, here I come!

November 3, 2009
(right click, save as, email to the sexiest Yarmouthian you know)

Track List
Milks & Rectangles - Slander Debunked
The Superfantastics - Lullabye Punches
Heavy Meadows - Sweet Traverse
The Lodge - Forget The Silence
Instruments - Data Processing
Jean-Paul Joseph Marc Andre's "Catch of the Day:"
Deerfield - Stay Here
The Grass - Down At The Station
Three Sheet - At The End of the Day
Acres and Acres - Polar Bear Song
Jon McKiel - Walking With The Dead
Priestess - I Am The Night, Colour Me Black
The Motorleague - You Wear Me Down
Octoberman - Thirty Reasons
First Aid Kit - New York City
Emm Gryner - Waiting Room (Fugazi Cover)

Monday, November 2, 2009

Superfantastics Recording Session!

Sunday I was lucky enough to participate in a Superfantastics recording session!
The fantastically fun-filled duo were recording their version of "Do They Know It's Christmas (Feed The World)" for their upcoming Christmas album.

Much like the original 1984 version, the Superfans gathered a bunch of Halifax's best and brightest talent to lend their vocal abilities to the tune.
The session included Jenocide's Jen Clarke, The Lodge/The Beginners' Mike O'Neil, Myles Deck & The Fuzz's Myles Deck & Jordan Oakie, and Heavy Meadows' Virgil Muir and his wife Natalie. Oh, and me. Much UNlike the original 1984 Bob Geldof-produced version, there was no animosity between George Michael & Boy George, nor was there mountains of coke and gallons of vodka. There was Party Mix & apples though. Yum.

Here are some pictures:

The Superfans hard at work:

Jenocide's Jen Clarke:

The Lodge/The Beginner's Gemini-Award-Winning Mike O'Neil:

The awesome Choir:

The album is due out in December, and in typical Superfantastics style they're putting together a sweet video, and once the it's done they'll be putting it on the ol' Internet coupled with a link to donate funds to Feed Nova Scotia.

I also have it on good authority that the band will debut the track on Halifax Is Burning before the holiday season is upon. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E05

C'est l'Halloween. Hey!
What are your pre-Halloween rituals?

October 27, 2009
(right click, save as, email to the Great Pumpkin)

Track List
Cousins - Anxious
Said The Whale - The Magician (Camilo)
Hannah Georgas - The Beat Stuff
Mardeen - Lovers Out Of Love
Immaculate Machine - Numero de Telephone
The Superfantastics - Turn On Me
*interview* :: Rob Corrigan re: Studio A Cafe
The Prospector's Union - The Valley Neighbors
Windom Earle - Greg's Song
Ruby Jean & The Thoughtful Bees - You Don't Miss Me
Big Game Hunt - Seeing Red
Myles Deck & The Fuzz - Police Cops
The Fantods - Yellow Pumpkin

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E04


October 20, 2009
(right click, save...you know the drill)

Track List:
A History Of - Low Level
Crystal Antlers - Tentacles
Dinosaur Bones - N.Y.E
York Redoubt - Upside
Said The Whale - The Magician (Camilo)
Kestrels - Ridicule
The Weather Station - East
Old Folks Home - I Hate Dell
Mardeen - Ice Truck Killer
Ancestors - Supercycle
Pterodactyl - December
Oh No Forest Fires - It's Not Fun & Games Until Someone Loses and Eye
thomas/richard - That's No Way To Say Goodnight
Diemonds - Highway
Carpenter - You Can't Keep A Good Man Down
Zeus - Marching Through Your Head

HPX Giveaway! Kestrels Vinyl!

Want to win this sweet 12" vinyl?

Just respond in the comments sections with the answer to this question:

Kestrels have been making a huge appearance on CBC Radio 3's R3-30 Countdown. What song is on the countdown and what position does it hold right now?

The winner will be announced on the show tonight!

Kestrels are playing the Noyes Stage at the Toothy Moose, Wednesday October 21st @ 10:50pm with The Lodge, Said The Whale, & Hannah Georges.

HPX Preview: Q & A with Old Folks Home (Winnipeg, MB)

WHO: Shaun Gibson, drummer in Old Folks Home
WHAT: Adventurous Experimental Art-Pop
WHEN/WHERE: Thursday, 10:00pm @ The Paragon Theater

#1 - What are you most looking forward to, coming to Halifax for the Pop Explosion?
I'm really looking forward to seeing all my Halifax friends and seeing all the incredible music the festival has to offer. Both Ricardo and I have been wanting to play this festival for years, so we're very happy that it worked out this time.

#2 - What's the first thing you will do when you get to Halifax?
Practice, haha. Then drink some Keith's and wander around downtown.

#3 - On a scale of one to delicious, how would you rate your interest in eating a donair while you're here?
I'm sure Ricardo would put that near the top of his list. In fact, he'd probably mention donair in your previous question. I'll probably stick with falafel.

#4 - If Old Folks Home could cover one song by any Halifax band (past or present), what would it be?
Wow, there would probably be much debate within the band about this. I would love to try a popped out version on Wintersleep's "Seach Party" or anything in the Jenn Grant catalogue. We just spent some time with Ruby Jean and the Thoughtful Bee's when they were in Winnipeg, so maybe we'd take on one of their songs. Rebekkah Higgs sings on a song on our record, so that might be a nice treat.

#5 - Halifax artist and/or album you're most likely to listen to on your roadtrip out East?
This isn't fair, I'm on a huge Halifax kick right now. Jenn Grant and Brian Borcherdt are on constant Ipod rotation, but I can't get enough of the new In-Flight Safety album. Also, I constantly loop the last half of the song 'Run Run Run' on the first disc of Joel Plaskett's album "Three." What the hell, it's a long flight. I have time for it all!

DOWNLOAD: Old Folks Home - I Hate Dell

Old Folks Home takes the stage Thursday at The Paragon Theater with Jenocide, Think About Life & Cadence Weapon. $12 advance, $15 at the door.

FREE Crystal Antler Tickets!

Tune into Halifax is Burning tonight (6:30pm-7:30pm) to win FREE tickets to the Crystal Antlers/Red Mass/Dinosaur Bones/A History Of show which gets underway at 9:00pm tonight down at the Paragon Theater.

These tickets are worth 18$. But you can have them for FREE!

Tune into tonight for details on how to win.
CKDU 88.1FM in Halifax
www.ckdu.ca streaming live on the web.


So excited.

What are you going to see? Did you download the blank Pop Explosion planner? You should have, even our friends at Herohill wrote about it.

Here's a comprehensive schedule of where I'll be this week:
Check it out. Come say HI!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Tuesday's Show = Pop Explosion Perfection with giveaways, interviews and awesome tunes!

Be sure to tune in Tuesday for my triumphant return to Halifax is Burning.

I'm going to be hosting an all-Pop Explosion show featuring tracks from Dinosaur Bones, Pterodactyl, Diemonds, Kestrels, Old Folks Home and more!


While I'm on the air, I'll be giving away tickets to the Crystal Antlers show that's happening Tuesday and some Kestrels vinyl records!

Tuesday, 6:30-7:30pm.

Free stuff is awesome.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Sleepless Nights King Diamond Tour :: Blog 2

On Thursday, we got to Guelph super early and had - as usual - nothing to do. We spent some time in coffee shops, eating Chinese buffet and watching TV on our computers in the van. Eventually, we loaded into the Jimmy Jazz and patiently awaited our friends, Cursed Arrows - who, by the way, just put out a great new record on Noyes Records.

Their set was awesome, unfortunately the people at the bar weren't psyched about not being able to listen to AC/DC on the jukebox, so by the time we took the stage there wasn't a whole wack of people around. However, being able to hang out with Cursed Arrows again, not to mention our friends Joe and Amber, was fun - so the night wasn't a total bust.

We got up early Friday morning to make the trek to Montreal. Things were looking up for this show. We were playing on a Friday night, plus we were playing with a really good band from Toronto - The Ghost Is Dancing, and a band from Finland called Rubik. Problem is, with a four band bill and an early curfew on the venue (midnight) we got stuck with an 8:00pm time slot, which means we played to literally - no more than 7 people - three of whom we knew. We did some math, and figured out that even if 75 people showed up, we wouldn't make more than $20 on the night - so in the end, we didn't even stick around for the headliners. We decided, instead, to drive all night through Quebec in order to make it to Fredericton by sun-rise. Karley stuck around for the rest of the show and said some more people showed up, and also said that Rubik were awesome. I don't doubt it.

Now we're in Fredericton - got in around 9am this morning - hanging out at our friend Corinne's apartment where we're watching loads of South Park, taking showers and sleeping for most of the day.

Tonight we are playing at The Capital - our home away from home - and our tour will no doubt be resurrected from the depths of despair from whence we've been traveling. You can always count on Freddy Beach for that. We're playing with a local band called She Roars! and a band from Toronto who will be playing at the Pop Explosion called Dinosaur Bones.

Tonight will be good. It better be.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Blog Action Day

While Halifax is Burning is predominantly a radio show & blog focused on music, I'm also going to take the time to promote other important causes too. Case in point: Blog Action Day:

Blog Action Day is an annual event held every October 15 that unites the world’s bloggers in posting about the same issue on the same day with the aim of sparking discussion around an issue of global importance.

So in honour of this event, I am going to dedicate this post to something that really shocked me this weekend re: an environmental cause.

On Sunday, October 10th, the front page article in the Chronicle Herald was titled: "Is Local Better?"

While I recommend you take the time to read that article in full, here's the jist of it: Buying is definitely not cheaper or healthier for you.

Listen, people who buy local aren't necessarily interested in those qualities when it comes to fruits and veggies. For most people (or at least for me), buying local comes down to two very important rationalizations:

1) Supporting local farmers and the local economy
2) Hopefully making some sort of minuscule environmental impact.

When I get my food box every week from a local food co-op or from the farmer's market on Saturday mornings, I am really not concerned about my calorie intake or the ramifications on my pocket book. I am interested in a) helping a local, worthwhile, community venture and b) doing something small, but hopefully important, for an environmental cause.

Now, like the article states: "'People like to say buying local has lower environmental impacts because it seems objective, even though it may be completely unsubstantiated,' says [Peter Tyedmers, a Dalhousie University professor who researches the environmental impacts of food systems]."

Tyedmers argues that "When it comes to the greenhouse gas emissions, transporting food is one part of the environmental equation. But he says it can be easily outweighed by other factors, such as how much electricity is used to produce and process the crop and whether that electricity comes from coal or wind, for example."

OK, maybe there hasn't been sufficient and/or substantial research done on the balance of factors that Tyedmers is talking about, but it doesn't take a genius to realize that the amount of energy and emissions it takes a local farmer to grow and sell a few bunches of carrots at the farmer's market is probably considerably, most likely exponentially, less than buying a bunch of carrots from California.

Yes, there may be some grey areas - but holy cow. Isn't at least trying to buy local a better start and a better initiative for motivating some positive change than continuing to buy strawberries from Ecuador in the middle of January.

And of course, if you buy strictly local you will be committed to dealing with the fruits and veggies you can get that are in season. But is that so bad? I know we're accustomed to being able to buy whatever we want, whenever we want (thanks capitalism!), but to affect change there has to be some give and take. I'm OK with only eating the best apples from the Annapolis Valley in the fall and leaving the peaches from South America behind. Change takes sacrifice, you can't expect this to come easy. If it was easy, we would have done something a long time ago I presume.

The worst part about this article is that is was on the front page of the only provincial daily. If this article convinces even one person who is on the fence about buying local to not buy local, the Chronicle-Herald has committed a grave injustice and has successfully hindered the progress us locavores (as the article says) are trying to enact in our very own, very small, very personal way.

Sleepless Nights King Diamond Tour :: Blog 1

I was hoping to upload some sweet video content, but a certain drummer of mine forgot the firewire card at home, so you'll only be getting video blogs once we get back. Highlights will include the funnest time I've ever had with Share, Pinky teaching an interesting lady how to play the rock n roll and us generally being bored in vans and parking lots.

Well we're on tour for six days to promote our newest release, King Diamond, which you can procure at no cost from our WEBSITE.

It hasn't been the best of times, but it hasn't been the blurst of times either.

On Monday morning, after a 10:30am rehearsal in our parking garage practice spot, we started heading West. It was definitely a long day as we drove all the way from Halifax to Ottawa, arriving at our dear friend Chris' house around the 2:00am mark.

Tuesday we drove to Peterborough where we met up with our partners in crime and musical boyfriends, Share, who are also on the road promoting their radical new album Slumping In Your Murals. I can't say I've ever really had the best of times in Peterborough - I've played to a total of maybe 20 people there combined in my touring history with Sleepless Nights. I added a total of 5 to that this time around. By the end of our set, we were playing to Share, the bartender and the soundguy. Awesome.

All that being said though, it was a really fun X1000% due to the fact that we were hanging out with Share and all engaged in the never-dull game of trying to make each other laugh during our respective sets. For example, Pinky and I stared down Andrew for an entire song. No blinks. No smiles. Right at the front of the stage. Then, we proceeded to sing the Jenn Grant back-up part on the song "Broader" horribly off key, yet noticeably loud.
Share won the competition, however, when Dennis took his shirt off, and played the meanest most aggressive banjo-tawngin' I have ever seen during "Got Caught." Share 1, Sleepless Nights not 1.

We ended up sleeping in a room in a boarding house above the bar which also doubled as the band room. Needless to say, it wasn't a pleasant night's rest as we were indeed kept sleepless by the sounds of people puking, banging on doors, and breaking up. Toronto couldn't come soon enough.

On Wednesday morning, we drove over to the motel where the fancy pants' in Share were staying because they were sweet enough to invite us over to take showers in their hotel room once they had gotten ready. Showering is a luxury on the road, so we relished the opportunity.

After some eats, we drove to Toronto where we took a stroll through Kensington Market before we picked up our swank new tshirts and hoodies. The shirts feature the design in the image above. Here is our good friend Keith Hamilton providing modeling duties:

We played at The Boat in the heart of the market with Share again, and an amazing band called Ford Pier, whose guitar player/singer - by the way - has an impressive history.

The show was considerably better than the previous night, and we got to see some old friends (Jo, Kendall, Keith!) and make some new ones. Because people were actually there to see the show, there was a more serious tone to the night, and all the bands played ripping sets.

We stayed with good ol' Keith, and went out for breakfast at Sneaky Dees where we got to meet up with ex-Sleepless Nights drummer, current Best Man member, Mary.

Right now we're hanging out in a Guelph coffee shop and patiently awaiting load in at the Jimmy Jazz where we're playing a show with our friends, Cursed Arrows.

PS - It's super cold in Ontario and its giving snow tonight. Balls.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

No Show tonight!

Hey faithful listeners,

Halifax is Burning will NOT be airing on CKDU tonight as I am in Peterborough, Ontario playing some rock n roll songs with my band Sleepless Nights.

In lieu of the show, CKDU's David Parker will be playing some sweet metal! So tune in anyways.

I'll be back on the air next week, fresh off tour with a special all-Halifax Pop Explosion edition of the show!

See you in a week!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

FREE CDs & Vinyls!

Well folks, the CKDU funding drive is coming to an end for another year, but there's still that last minute push to raise as much money as we can for the city's only campus-based, community radio station.

Halifax is Burning is giving away some awesome prize packs if you choose to donate.

Here's the breakdown:

- A $5.00 donation will get you a copy of The Establishment's Economy Radio CD OR a copy of The Establishment's 7" vinyl split with Windsor, Ontario's Orphan Choir. No questions asked.

- A $10.00 donation qualifies you to win one of two No Scene Records prize packs which includes the following CDs:
- The Establishment: Economy Radio
- thomas/richard: The Promises We Make
- Jon McKiel: The Nature of Things
- Joyless Streets: Carrots & Sticks
- Murder She Wrote: Self Titled
- Measured In Angles: History of the Engine

- A $15.00 donation qualifies you to win a Noyes Records prize pack which includes the following CDs:
- The Memories Attack: LP2
- The Medium Mood: New Alarm
- The Got To Get Got: Sahalee
- The Got To Get Got: Canadian Arts Collective Blues/Huge Zig Zag

- A $20.00 donation qualifies you to win a Noyes Record vinyl prize pack which includes the following records:
- VKNGS: VKNGS (12" CLEAR Vinyl)
- Kestrels: Primary Colours (12")
- The Got To Get Got: Rattle Off (7")
- Kestrels: Seaside (7")

Donations are being accepted via PayPal at the bottom of this post, or - if you'd rather - come out to Gus' on Sunday night to check out Sleepless Nights and Rah Rah, and you can make your pledge there. I'll be announcing the winner of each pack that night before the Sleepless Nights set, and contacting each winner (if you're not at the show) by email.

Thanks for your support!
And don't forget to tune into Halifax is Burning, Tuesday nights from 6:30pm to 7:30pm on CKDU 88.1FM in Halifax, and streaming live on the internet at CKDU.ca.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E03

This week's show was a very special Funding Drive episode. We had my good friend Pinky in to countdown his Top 10 haligonian drummers.

October 5, 2009
(right click, save as and email it to your best bud who's teaching English in Korea)

Track List:

The Establishment - Lifeboat & Captain
Windom Earle - Greg's Song
Be Bad - Dead Head
VKNGS - Daves of Thunder
Ermine - Dura Mater
The Burdocks - Icicle Knife
Thrush Hermit - Headin' South
The Dean Malenkos - Dance Bitch
Heavy Meadows - Without Strings
North of America - Voting "No" On the Warming of Antartica
Contrived - Get To Your Stations
Rich Aucoin - Alive!

Visit Bloody Drum Knuckles' to voice your opinion...or, just leave your comments here!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Special Funding Drive Episode of Halifax is Burning, with special guest, Pinky!

Drummer, and blogger extraordinaire Josh "Pinky" Pothier will be my special guest on Halifax is Burning this week.

Not only will he be talking about his sweet blog, Bloody Drum Knuckles, but he'll be counting down his top ten list of local drummers. Tune in to hear his picks, this Tuesday @ 6:30pm. 88.1FM in Halifax, CKDU.ca streaming live online.

Oh, and don't forget, it's funding drive week at CKDU, so call in (49-HAPPY) and make your pledges to support the only campus-based community radio station in Halifax. If you call in a donation during Halifax is Burning, you'll be entered in a draw to win an awesome prize package from Noyes Records!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E02

September 29, 2009
(right click and "Save As" - then YouSend it to all your friends [and listen to it too])

The return of Jean-Paul Joseph Marc Andre à Billy à Michel sur Armand!!

Track List
The Peter Parkers - Make Out Party
Jon McKiel - Violent Dreams (Thrush Hermit Cover)
Sharp Like Knives - Holy Gaud
Major/Minor - Take Care of You Suitcase
The Superfantastics - Turn On Me
Tongan Death Grip - Werewolf
Sprengjuhollin - The Drive
Mates of State - Beautiful Dreamer
Ryan Cook - Gaspereau Valley
The Fantods - Left The Light On
Klarka Weinwurm - Wood Stove Fires
The Stanfields - Ship To Shore

Sunday, September 27, 2009

CKDU Funding Drive!

"CKDU 88.1 FM is Halifax's only campus-based community radio station, broadcasting original programming 24 hours per day, 365 days per year. Beyond a small group of 5 part-time staff, the station is entirely run by over 200 volunteers.
A significant portion of CKDU's operating budget is raised through our annual funding drive – a 10-day on-air extravaganza where we ask our listeners to put their money where their ears are and pledge their support for community radio.

Our goal this year is to raise $25,000, and with your help, we can do it!"

There are also lots of sweet events going on here in the 'fax to help raise the twenty-five G's, and you can learn all about them by clicking HERE.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

"Do you love your guns, god, your government?" Marilyn Manson @ The Metro Centre - September 25, 2009 :: Concert Review

Battling the swine flu and poor ticket sales on the East Coast leg of his Canadian tour, Marilyn Manson had a lot of things working against him coming into Halifax. However, like the Cooper's and Bowie's before him have proved, the show must go on; and go on it did.

From the first phrase of "We're From America," Manson's voice was a little raspier than usual. Coupled with 2-3 minute pauses between each song of the hour and a half set, the sickness was evident. But the Antichrist Superstar gave it his all, and screamed (literally) his way through a blistering set of 14 songs.

The set list was an interesting mix of new material from the High End of Low album, ripping out some classics like "Sweet Dreams," "The Dope Show," and "The Beautiful People." Of course, the show wasn't without some personal highlights like "The Love Song," "Irresponsible Hate Anthem" and the Patti Smith cover "Rock N' Roll Nigger" from Manson's famed Smells Like Children EP.

Honestly, the new album isn't that great. It's not terrible, but some of the songs (most of which are about breaking up with Evan Rachel Wood and/or Dita Von Teese) come off as a little bland. However, the new songs were heavy as hell and gave me a completely new outlook on the record (which I will promptly give a re-listen). "Pretty as a Swastika" is probably the heaviest Manson song I've heard since anything off Antichrist Superstar. Definitely blew my mind, and my expectations of the High End of Low, out of my skull. Even the ballad, "Running To The End of The World" reveled in the grandiose Deep Purple-like organ, making the song an interesting toned-down choice for the set list (especially since he didn't play the first single from The High End of Low, "Arma-God Damn-Mother-Fucking-Geddon.")

Of course, it wouldn't be a Marilyn Manson show without the use of some provoking Nazi-esque backdrops, some upside-down cross lights, knife microphones, glitter and confetti canons. The props were a little toned down compared to the last time I saw Manson in Montreal three years ago. A giant high chair and a make-shift boxing ring were definitely lacking this time around, but the spotlight, smoke filled, paparazzi inspired setting during "The Dope Show" almost made up for that.

Montreal comparison's aside, it was great to see the band with original bassist Twiggy Ramirez - though he was playing guitar this time around - and with the driving force of drummer Ginger Fish (complete with two kick drums!). It's hard to believe that the unmistakable, thick crunching guitars ever-present on Manson tracks comes from one guitar on any given recording, but the band usually tends to stick to one guitar live - though on "Dried Up and Dead to World" Manson himself donned a guitar.

The breaks between songs kind of killed the momentum at times, and having the flu definitely took a toll on Manson (and his voice), but the set list selection combined with his relentlessness and show-must-go-on attitude made up for any lacking elements.
I would be lying if I didn't say I wasn't channeling my 15-year-old self most of the time, pumping my fists and singing along, all while staring in awe at one of my favorite rock n rollers of all time - so all in all, I had a great time and was consistently impressed by the Antichrist himself. Hopefully I won't have to wait three years to see him again.

01. We’re From America
02. Disposable Teens
03. Pretty as a Swastika
04. The Love Song
05. Irresponsible Hate Anthem
06. Four Rusted Horses
07. Dried Up, Tied, and Dead to the World
08. Leave a Scar
09. The Dope Show
10. Running to the Edge of the World
11. Rock is Dead
12. Sweet Dreams
13. Rock n’ Roll Nigger
14. Beautiful People

Sweet Dreams:


The Dope Show:


Beautiful People:



Friday, September 25, 2009

Free Download! Pop Explosion Planner!

If you're anything like me, this is the first thing you do when the Halifax Pop Explosion festival schedule is released: pick up the program, and circle every show you want to go to.

Then, you take your schedule home, and plot out your day-by-day, hour-by-hour plan.

Well, Halifax is Burning is going to help you out this year.

Click here to download your very own copy of a blank Pop Explosion Planner.

I'll be posting my own personal picks in the planner format after this week's show, which - don't forget - airs Tuesday nights from 6:30pm to 7:30pm on CKDU 88.1FM in Halifax, and live online at www.ckdu.ca.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Halifax Is Burning :: S01E01

SEPTEMBER 22, 2009
(right click and "Save As" - then slam it on your iPod and/or share it with your friends)

Track List:
The Motorleague - Big Time
Mardeen - Ice Truck Killers
Two Hours Traffic - Painted Halo
A/V - Miss A/V
Jenocide - Fashion Icon
Bike Rodeo - Song 7
Gamma Gamma Rays - Science
Myles Deck & The Fuzz - Police Cops
Share - Date & Time
York Redoubt - Dead
Jon McKiel - War on You
Fucked Up - Looking for God
Cousins - Out on Town
Mary Stewart - Sweeter Than
Boyz Noize - Putting Holes In Happiness (Marilyn Manson Remix)

The Politics of Polaris

Last night, Toronto hardcore band Fucked Up took home $20,000 when they won the Polaris Music Prize.

To Canadian indie rockers, rappers, or - in this case - punk rockers, this is probably the biggest award up for grabs. Not only is twenty grand a huge chunk of change to bring home and help pay the bills, winning Polaris comes with a certain, sometimes much needed, degree of notoriety.

Unfortunately for Fucked Up, the mainstream media won't even print their name.

The CBC called them F--ked Up, the National Post called them F----d Up, and the Globe & Mail went so far as to call them "the band with the unprintable name" (although in the web story, they did print Fucked Up).

How polite are we as Canadians that we can't dare to print or say their name?

Now, we can sit here and debate language philosophy. We could talk Wittgenstein and the merit of associating words with meaning, but let's instead talk about how this will affect the band.

Granted the shock value of their name will create waves and earn them some much-deserved press attention, but its all a bit bittersweet and ironic isn't it?

After winning an award that rewards them for excellence in artistic merit, they'll get the most attention because their name has a swear word in it.

The same thing happened to Holy Fuck when they were cited by the Conservative government in an internal memo as the reason for a slew of federal arts cuts. The attention they received based on their controversial name alone disregarded their grueling tour schedules, their ever-growing fan base, their contribution to modern Canadian electronica, or the fact that the band is representing our country on a consistent basis overseas at huge festivals like Glastonbury.

How many people will talk about Fucked Up as a band who, by winning this award, brought hardcore music to a more mainstream audience (maybe begrudgingly to hardcore fans), who opened critics eyes to the potential of non-radio friendly heavy music, who has the ability to rip shit up and still be invited to speak on FOX News. Probably not many.

Think about it, how much attention did Patrick Watson, Besnard Lakes, Caribou or Final Fantasy get from mainstream press for their Polaris wins - aside from the obvious winning $20,000 angle.

Now this coverage probably won't hurt Fucked Up. I don't know who said "there is no such thing as bad press," but if this is what it takes for Fucked Up to become a household name, fine. Sort of in the same vein as Kanye West's Taylor Swfit mic-grabbing incident, lots of people - including the media - will be talking about Fucked Up for the next week (at the very least).

It's just too bad that people won't be talking about how great The Chemistry of Common Life is, or why it deserved to win $20,000. They'll just be talking about the band's expletive name.

And that's fucked up.

Halifax Is Burning!

Halifax Is Burning is a new radio show that features the hottest tracks coming out of the Haligonian music scene and the East Coast.

Tune into the show Tuesday's from 6:30pm to 7:30pm on CKDU 88.1FM in Halifax. If you don't have a radio, or you happen to be out of the frequency range, you can stream live online at http://www.ckdu.ca

This blog will not only feature the show's tracklists, but thanks to CKDU's awesome archiving technology, it will also host links to previous weeks' shows. On top of that, I'll also be including some music-related rants, videos and the likes.

Stick around, thanks for listening and keep the fire burning.