Thursday, December 13, 2018

Bill & Joel Plaskett Live in Edmonton Dec.6th 2018

Last week Janis, Buzzard and I went to the Bill & Joel Plaskett show at the Myer Horowitz Theatre. This would be my ninth time seeing Joel Plaskett in concert. Bill & Joel were playing two shows in Alberta to cap off their Solidarity tour. Solidarity being the name of the album that Joel and his Dad Bill put out in February of 2017. The tour didn't come through Alberta when they originally did the tour as Joel had done a few shows with the Edmonton and Calgary Orchestras. So I really wasn't expecting to see the two of them perform together. But much to my surprise JCL Productions brought the two of them to town for a show.

Opening the show was the Mayhemingways, who are a folk duo from Peterborough, Ontario. Benj Rowland does lead vocals and plays an array of instruments from acoustic guitar, mandolin, banjo and accordion all the while playing bass on a guitar pedal, part two of the duo is Josh Fewings on drums and harmony vocals. I had never heard them before but thought they were pretty damn good. A couple song titles I recall them playing were "Bad Old Days" and "Frances The Truck", both were good. Overall I enjoyed their set.


Next up was Bill and Joel Plaskett. I always enjoy seeing Joel in concert as he is a great songwriter, guitar player and always entertaining. I had seen his dad Bill play in Joel's band once before when Joel came through town in 2009 on his tour for the album Three.

This show started with just the two of them playing about a half dozen songs together, which of course included a few songs from the Solidarity album. The only problem with this show is that they struggled with monitor problems through out the show, but they soldiered on and still put on a wicked show. After the first six or so songs it was time for Joel Plaskett to play some songs by himself.

A couple of the songs that Bill and Joel did from the Solidarity album were, the title song, "Dragonfly", "Blank Cheque" and "On Down The River". Joel's solo songs were great too, with im playing a rare acoustic version of "Drunk Teenagers", "Ashtray Rock" and "Fashionable People" from his Ashtray Rock album, and a good selection of songs from his Three album "Rollin', Rollin, Rollin", "Pine, Pine, Pine", "Wishful Thinking", "Through, Through, Through" and "Deny, Deny, Deny".

Other songs played were "I'm Yours", "I Love This Town", oh man I wish I could remember them all. He did play one new song I believe was called "Memory Complete Me". So many great songs in this two hour show. For the last part of the show he had the Mayhemingways join them for about 6 songs. All in all this was a great show. Good times!!!

Bill and Joel Plaskett.

Friday, December 7, 2018

The Devil's Voice Live in Edmonton Nov.25th 2018

So what do you do on a Sunday night? Why, you go to a punk rock show, that's what you do. So it was last Sunday I made my way to The Buckingham on Whyte Avenue for a triple bill of music.

The first band of the evening was a Madball cover band fronted by JFK of E-Town Beatdown, also featuring members of Run With The Hunted and Sleeping Girl. Madball is a hardcore band out of New York, but this was Edmonton's version. I thought they sounded great, JFK certainly had the vocals down and the rest of the band were damn good as well. A great set.

Madball cover band.

Second band of the night and the surprise guest was a band called Seas out of Brampton, Ontario. This band is made of two former members of the band Moneen. Led by Chris Hughes of Moneen, he with the long ass dreads. Chris is a crazy front man whipping his air around and jumping around all the while singing and playing guitar. Also from Moneen was drummer Peter Krpan. Sitting in on bass was Clay Shea whom used to be in the Edmonton band Choke. Their music is a mix of pounding heavy shit shifting to psychedelia all in the same song. I rather enjoyed their set.


Headlining the night was The Devil's Voice which is an SNFU cover band made up of members Jesse Zaraska from (Misery Signals/Compromise) on vocals, Brent Connolly (Sleeping Girl) on guitar, Garrett Heath Kruger (Fire Next Time/The Allovers and more) on drums, Braden Sustrik on bass (Compromise) and Shawn Moncrieff on guitar (Choke). of course The Devil's Voice is an SNFU song title from their If You Swear, You'll Catch No Fish album.

The Devil's Voice came together for a Halloween show where local bands did sets of bands being bands. These guys chose the iconic Edmonton punk band SNFU. It went over so well that they have now played a hand full of gigs since. This was my first time seeing them, and knowing most of the guys in the band I was looking forward to seeing them perform. I thought they did an excellent job. Lead singer Jesse might not have Chi Pig's (Kenn Chinn) voice but he did it justice and he had Chi's moves down good to his prancing, dyed hair, high kicks and the way he held his mic. You could tell Jesse was having a blast as were the band cranking out these old punk hits. Songs like "Cannibal Café", "She's Not On The Menu", "Where's My Legs" and "Time To Buy A Futon". Their 30 or so minute set was full on punk rock, I just wish I could remember what other songs they played but I am drawing a blank. I guess that's what you get when you don't write a review in a timely matter. I had a lot of fun at this show. Good times!!!

The Devil's Voice.

In concert news...The Devil's Voice will be playing their last gig on New Years Eve in Edmonton at The Temple in the Starlite Room, Also, Jesse Zaraska's band Misery Signals are working on a new album and touring Europe in 2019 with a couple of warm up shows in Alberta. One of them being at the Starlite Room on Sunday March 17th.

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Mike Plume Live in Edmonton Nov.24th 2018

On Saturday night Janis, Char, Buzzard and I went to the Mike Plume concert at Station On Jasper. This would be my 16th time seeing Mike Plume in concert. Mike has been touring lots the past two months across Canada, but this would be his only headlining show in his hometown of Edmonton for 2018. He did do an opening slot in the summer opening for Amy Helm. Mike released his new album Born By The Radio earlier this year, so this was going to be an opportunity for lots to hear the new music live for the first time.

Opening the show was Rebecca Lappa who is a singer/songwriter from Edmonton. Her music is folk based with a touch of pop. This was my second time seeing Rebecca in concert. One of the songs she performed was a song called "No Stone Left Alone", it's actually an anthem song for the No Stone Left Alone Memorial Foundation. The Foundation is about making sure no stone goes without a poppy on Remembrance Day, a very worthy cause.

Overall I enjoyed her set more so this time around then the previous time.

Rebecca Lappa.

Now it was time for Mike Plume's set. Which is always exciting to me, as I am a huge fan,, this being my sixteenth time seeing him play. Mike opened his set with the song "My Old Friend" from his latest release Born By The Radio. Mike has been opening all his shows on this tour with that song, which is a great way to open. You could tell most of the people in the crowd were familiar with this song as lots were singing along. So hopefully that means his album is selling well, because it certainly deserves the attention. And as he has done as well on this tour the second song was "Five Crow Silver" from his 2013 album Red And White Blues album. After that you never know what he will pull out of his catalog of music. That's the beauty of a Mike Plume show is that there is never a setlist, he reads the crowd and plays what he feels will go over well. He does take requests sometimes during the show, one of them requests being "Girl In Green" from his Song And Dance, Man album.

Because the show was a week ago already I don't remember all the songs he did. I really should write my reviews in a more timely fashion, oh well! The biggest surprise for song choices of the night for me was the song "Hard On Equipment (Tool For The Job)" which is a Corb Lund song recorded on Corb's Horse Soldier, Horse Soldier album. I didn't realize Mike co-wrote this song. Though Mike did say Corb wrote the majority of the song, still it was cool to hear Mike's version of the song. And with Christmas just around the corner Plume played a song from his Back Home For Christmas album which is only available online from his bandcamp page, the song is called "Merry Xmas to My Ex Miss" which is always good to hear and is quite funny. Another song he played which is only available online is his Stompin' Tom tribute song "So Long Stompin' Tom", I fucking love this song.

Other songs played were "Like A Bullet From A Gun", "Weeds", "Make It Up As We Go" and "8:30 Newfoundland". So many good songs through out his two hour show. Of course we got Mike's witty humour between songs, which is always hilarious. Mike closed out his show with a beautiful rendition of The Pogues song "Dirty Old Town". Such an amazing night of music. Also a big shout out to Mike Plume for putting Janis on the guest list for the show, thanks so much Mike! Good times!!!

Mike Plume at the Station On Jasper.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Roger Hodgson Live in Edmonton Nov.16th 2018

Last Friday Janis, Char, Buzzard and I went to the Roger Hodgson concert at the River Cree Casino. I never saw Supertramp in concert so seeing Roger Hodgson was going to be the next best thing. Singer-songwriter Roger Hodgson was a member of Supertramp between 1969-1983 before going solo in 1984. He wrote and co-wrote most of Supertramp's biggest hits which were performed at this show.

Roger Hodgson and his back up band played a two hour set to a sell out crowd. I was very impressed with not only how good Roger still sounds at 68 years old but also by how genuine and kind he comes across. He thanked the crowd a few times for coming out to the show on a miserable winter night, even mentioning that he had a bit of a cold, but you couldn't tell that he was under the weather. He also had a great band with him. No gimmicks, no crazy light show, just the tunes and that was cool by me.

They opened the show with "Take The Long Way Home" from Supertramp's Breakfast In America then into "School" from their biggest selling album Crime Of The Century. The evening was full of hits from them two albums. Including "Breakfast In America", "Child Of Vision", "Lord Is It Mine", "The Logical Song" and of course the song "Dreamer" which got a huge response and had the crowd singing along.

And for the encore Roger played "Give A Little Bit", again another huge hit for him and Supertramp. there were a few songs I wasn't familiar with but overall I knew the majority of them. I was very impressed with the man on sax and harmonica, he was awesome. Having seen some of these songs performed live now, I didn't realize that some parts of the songs that I thought were keyboards were actually harmonica and some parts I thought were guitar were keys. So that was kind of cool. All and all I thought it was a good concert. Good times!!!

Roger Hodgson at River Cree Casino.

T-shirt front.

T-shirt back.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Mac Sabbath Live in Edmonton Nov.8th 2018

Last Thursday I went to the Mac Sabbath concert at the Starlite Room here in Edmonton. The show was originally booked for the smaller room The Temple in the same building but was moved to the main venue the Starlite Room. So I guess you could say tickets sold better then expected.

I got there early as I wanted to see all three bands on the bill, starting with local band Electric Audrey 2. I had never heard of them before and thought they were alright. Their music is a mish mash of country, rockabilly and punk. They were a high energy band reminding me of Gogol Bordello.

Electric Audrey 2.

Next band up was Frank & Deans out of Las Vegas, Nevada. This four piece band plus a burlesque dancer play old Rat Pack music in a punk rock style. Lead singer Jordan Hoss described their music as "we are here to fuck up your Grandma's music". Playing songs such as Cab Calloway's "Minnie The Moocher", Tony Bennett's "Lady Is A Tramp" and Bobby Darin's "Splish Splash", you get the idea. They were a fun and entertaining band, but what really stole the show and kept people interested was Nickole Muse who started the show dressed up in lingerie like a burlesque dancer and through out the show removed her clothing, all the while dancing, shaking her ass and hula hooping out on the dance floor. By the end of Frank & Deans set she was down to pasties. Without her, would people have been as interested, I'm betting not.

Frank & Deans.

Headlining the show was Mac Sabbath from Los Angeles, California, they are a parody band mocking McDonalds playing the music of Black Sabbath but changing the lyrics to make fun of fast food. The band call themselves the founders of Drive Thru Metal. The band consists of Ronald Osbourne on vocals who does a great job of mimicking Ozzy with his between song banter and the way he shuffles himself around the stage, on drums is the Catburglar, Grimalice on bass and on guitar is Slayer MacCheeze. The out fits they wear are outrageously funny as are some of the lyrics they change to the Black Sabbath songs.

The first thing I noticed when I got to the show was their merch booth as I had to have a t-shirt from this band. Manning the booth was a guy dressed up as a McDonalds employee who we later learned during the show was employee of the month, he also doubled as a roadie. Funny shit! Mac Sabbath had the best merch I have seen ever. Everything from glow in the dark t-shirt (ya I got one), scarves, toques, pins, stickers, belt buckles, hoodies, posters, colouring book and I'm sure there was more yet.

Lead singer Ronald Osbourne used all kinds of props while performing including the grill in front him through the whole show, ketchup and mustard squeeze bottles which he squeezed out at the crowd, thank goodness it was only water in them. Ronald could be often seen with a flipper and frying pan in his hand, or chowing down on a bat burger, or tossing beach balls that looked like hamburger buns into the crowd. Then there was the music of course, which were all Black Sabbath tunes with different lyrics, titles such as "More Ribs" done to the tune of (War Pigs), "Sweet Beef" (Sweet Leaf), "Pair-a-buns" (Paranoid), "Organic Funeral" (Electric Funeral), "Frying Pan" (Iron Man) and so on and so on, you get the gist, funny fucking shit. Then Ronald had to go on about how Mac Sabbath are the only true Drive Thru Metal band, ignore such bands as Iggy Popeye's, KFC/DC, Dairy Queensryche the laughs just never stopped. And instead of yelling "Let's get Crazy" like Ozzy always does during his shows, Ronald would yell "Let's Get Lazy". This was just a really fun show, if there was a weakness it was probably Ronald's vocals, but hey it was still a blast. My question is, who the hell are these guys actually. I still think when it comes to shtick bands, no one can beat Dread Zeppelin in my opinion. Still, good times were had. Good times!!!

Mac Sabbath.

Glow in the dark t-shirt.