Posts Tagged ‘Stars’


Stars frontman Torquil Campbell stopped by The Zone Afternoon Show on Friday.  The band was in town for a sold out show at Alix Goolden.

Stars are a band that I love and their 2004 record Set Yourself on Fire is a perfect album.

Torquil had been tweeting some interesting thoughts…could this be the last Stars tour?  Is Our Band Could Be Your Life the greatest book?

Torquil Campbell on The Zone @ 91-3

I was DJing at Veneto Friday night and missed the show…but after the concert, some friends popped by for a cocktail.  They were all glowing about the concert.

It got me all nostalgic for Set Yourself on Fire.  This record used to be one of my favourites.  I remember taking some classes at Camosun.  I walked to class in the snow, or rain, or cherry blossoms… jamming my discman.  And this record in particular.

Your Ex-Lover is Dead” is the first song.  Such a powerful and beautiful cut.  Saturday’s errands and a park visit with Madelyn called for Stars as the soundtrack.

Go with yourself.

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Torquil Campbell and Amy Milan have some new music to share.  Already bouncing around the intertron and available from their website is “The Theory of Relativity.”  Now I have another jam from Stars upcoming album The North.  “Hold On When You Get Love and Let Go When You Give It” of… “Give It” for short.  Punch it.

Stars – “Give It”

I’ve been a Stars fan for many years now, so this song is an easy sell for me.  The album, The North comes out on September 4th. Stars will be supporting Metric when they hit the arena in November.

Hai Gurl, where you been at?  Cat Power took a few years off of making commercially available music but today Bossman Johnny forwarded this jam from NPR. Also due in September… Cat Power’s Sun features a song called “Ruin.”

Cat Power – “Ruin”



Yesterday at the Osheaga Music Festival Broadcast at Curious Comics… I spotted a comic called Ianto’s Tomb. a Dark Sun comic?  SWA? Had to have it…

It wasn’t the best graphic novel I ever read… it was confusing at times and if you are new to Dark Sun, it might seem weird or hard to follow.  But seeing as I try to read everything I can get my hands on that is dark Sun, my mind filled in the gaps and I enjoyed seeing someone draw out what a D&D adventure on Athas might look like.  I wish I could draw… it seems like a fun way to create a fantasy story.

Go with yourself.

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Getting in the Halloween spirit with a half-hour collection of songs with “ghosts” as the theme.


Thank you for taking the time to listen to my mix.

Click and listen: Mixtape >> Ghosts


DJ Notes

Memphis leads off the mixtape with a most fitting Ghost song… Torquil Campbell, the male vocal ying to Stars‘ Amy Milan’s female yang… put out a great little side project album many moons ago.  I saw him perform at Logan’s back in like 2006, and it was mighty.  I always remembered this cut because its so darn spooky.

The next song features a white Motown artist.  SWA?  I know right, a white guy that made MoTown magic back in the 60s and 70s.  Only in Canada.  R. Dean Taylor was born in Toronto, Ontario back when the Leafs lost the Stanley Cup to the Bruins (1939).

He recorded a song called “At The High School Dance” in 1961 which garnered some local success and his next song “I’ll Remember” charted on legendary Canadian rock radio station CHUM.  The success promoted our Maple Leaf Rocker to move to Detroit…this historic occasion also marked the last time a Canadian would ever willingly move to that city yeesh.  R. Dean taylor would get hired on by Motown as a performer and writer and would have a moderately successful career.  Go Canada and obscure white Motown artists!

I make a mean game of dumping on Matthew Good, but the fact of the matter is, I like a lot of his songs.  Apparitions are ghosts and “Apparitions” is on the list of favourite Matt Good songs.

Did I ever tell you the story of running into Matt Good at a gas station convenience store on Burrard street and I ran around the store heckling him till he left? Yeah, I’m an asshole and wouldn’t do that again if I had the day back.  But it made sense at the time.

Hey Matt Good, if you google yourself and my blog comes up and you remember that time some skinny douche bag gave you a hard time in a gas station convenience store…. Sorry.

The only time we ever really dabbled with Band of Horses on the Zone… the song was about ghosts!

You should be familiar with Wintersleep’s “Weighy Ghost.”  A more mainstream cut that got ample play on the radio.

Mother Mother is hard at it right now, working on a new record (due January).  Currently “Hayloft” is the most requested song on the Zone Afternoon Show, but believe this hype! Its not even the most quirky song on the album O My Heart.  Put this “Ghosting” song in your ear-hole and ruminate.

The National are my favourite band, so when I had a song on my iTunes with the word “Ghost” in it… well it had to make the list.

Riot Act, Pearl Jam’s seventh studio record and first post-9/11 and post Roskilde Festival Accident record has a song called “Ghosts.”  Rad.  I do like me some Pearl Jam… and going back to read about Riot Act after jamming out “Ghosts” and now I want to hear the whole record.

yee-yah… Riot Act is a great record.

The mixtape ends with a haunting cut from Spoon’s Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga… “The Ghost of You Lingers.”  Shit’s going on in my right ear… whoa, then my left.  Stereo sound.

Go with yourself.

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Last weekend in Victoria was busy.  There was the parade, the hordes of American band nerds, the cruise ships and holidayers, personally I had a wedding to attend and DJ and then there were the kids dressed as olden tyme Victorians crossed with Mad-Max.  Steampunks.

Taking my grandparents for a stroll around Victoria I noticed some Goth looking kids all dolled up in frilly dresses and corsets.  one person commented that it might grad attire for a local highschool and we left it at that.

Later that night I was DJing at the Veneto Lounge and Miss Rosie Bitts stopped in for a cocktail and bite after a gig.  She had just performed at the Empress Hotel for Victoria’s first Steampunk Expo!

Wow, I wish I had heard of it earlier, seemed very cool.  It might be hard for me to explain here, real nerd stuff, but check out the wikipedia on Steampunk if you are curious.

While trolling the world of steampunk I discovered a story about a robot named Boilerplate.

The idea of steampunk is that is a fantasy or alternate history type of story where the technologies of the Victorian and Edwardian age either live on or information technology is “invented” at an earlier time.  Think a steam powered computer for example?

Boilerplate is the story of a robot build in 1893.  History’s Mechanical Marvel, created to end human causalities during conflicts between nations!

Watch the trailer.

When Paul Guinan created Boilerplate as an online project back in 2000, it seemed so real that many people actually believed that some mad scientist invented Boilerplate!

Check out the website.

At the top of this post is a picture of Boilerplate from the album cover of Stars’ 2008 digital ep, Sad Robots.


I wanted to know more about Steampunk music… but what I unearthed, was… well terrible.

Some group called Abney Park… oy vey.  Super cheeseball and they seem more interested in selling brass goggles and t-shirts than crafting some unique music.

And yet the idea of what steampunk music might sound like to me is fairly intriguing.  I might stew on that a bit to hear some elements that might soundtrack a Steampunk Space Exploration!

I am sure it will include this jump-point song.


I do loves me some Tommy James and Shondells!  Yesterday, god bless Pol Plastino and his lovely lady Hannah.  Hannah works at Chapters and was able to track down a copy of Tommy James’ biography; Me, The Mob, and the Music.

So far so good.  There will be lots of inspiration for a new playlist to develop for my lounge sets at The Veneto.  This Wednesday night is the one year anniversary of the Rialto Hotel and the Veneto Lounge and I think I’ll base a set list on AM Top 40 radio of the early to mid-60s with some b-sides and interesting selections from Roulette Records.  I’ll need to take some notes tonight and track down some songs to mix into my standard weekend fare of Motown, Atlantic Records, Standards and Northern Soul jams.

There is a lot going on with Roulette so it might take some time to suss out the gems.

Go with yourself.

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Starting to get pretty excited for some upcoming releases from some of my favourite bands.  Here is a little run down of what gets me all hot bothered between the legs ears.

The National – High Violet (May 11th)

I remember reading sometime ago, the guitar player from the band was talking about the creative process for crafting the songs that will end up on this new National record.  He was naming the drafts after Civil War battles!  Its just so nerdy, I love it.

The National are one of my all time fave bands, so the day this comes out, I’ll be grabbing the digital and the vinyl copy for my collection.  And if the gods smile on me (no tix yet and its sold out!), I’ll be front and center at Sasquatch Festival when they take the stage.

Download: The National – “Bloodbuzz Ohio”

Band of Horses – Infinite Arms (May 18th)

Very romantic music, I have a couple BOH records and they remain a constant favourite for both Coral and I. We’ve also been fortunate to see them a couple time (or three for Corj) and every time, its better than the last.

I should start setting aside money now as there are a lot of records in May already that I’ll need.  You can have a listen and watch a video for the song “Compliments” by clicking right heeeeerrrrrre.

oh, and also playing Sasquatch!

The Hold Steady – Heaven is Whenever (May 4th)

A day after my brother Matt turns… hmmm I’m 30, my little sister is what?  25?  Matt must me turning 27?  Does that sound right?  my Mom will have to back that up, the point is, I know what I am getting my OTHER brother for a wedding gift!  The new Hold Steady record.  CJ, god bless ’em, went to live in London for the better part of a year sometime ago and one of the highlights of his working holiday was getting a chance to see one of our favourite bands in London!  How rad is that?  Then the man got tickets for us to see them in Vancouver last fall but I jammed out.  Bad brother I be.

The Hold Steady made some changes to their sound on this record, most notably, no more keys… who’ll be tickling the ivories on the new disc?  less piano balladry?  I don’t know about that, some of my fave Hold Steady songs are the ones with some heavy piano melody.  You can hear the song here and get all nostalgic for Boys and Girls in America era Steady.  Also listen for this new single on The Zone’s modern rock inbox.

And because I love torturing myself… another band I might miss if a miracle doesn’t happen and I don’t get me some Sasquatch tickets!

Holy Fuck – Latin (May 11)

Holy Fuck have a name that some people find offensive.  Calm down… if you look at it in the right frame of mind, it actually might be a very spiritual branding?

Holy Fuck changed my world in the fall of ’09 when they melted my brain into a sooty, chalky ooze in Element Nightclub during Rifflandia.  Its electronic, its epic, its organic, its living, its  a lot of things and with no (or much) lyrical content… it can be whatever you need it to be.

“Lovely Allen” will always remain one of my favorites and because they write that perfect song, they’ll get the benefit of the doubt that the new stuff will crush.  The first feature track is called “Latin America” and you can download it here, for free if you provide an email address. (on the player, its says MP3, click on that.)

A lot of you readers of the blog that have been enjoying some of the chilltastic beats I have been posting should really get a good experience from this song (and its free and painless to get, so go get).

Stars – The Five Ghosts (June 22nd)

The Stars’  2004 record Set Yourself on Fire, should go down as a Canadian indie rock classic.

It travels throughout all sorts of lonely and/or adorable themes.  I listened to that record pretty heavy when it came out and still enjoy going back to re-explore it from time to time.  I wasn’t as keen on “In Our Bedroom After The War” though I really wanted to be.  I think this might be the record where I bounce back into the Stars fold.  The first single sounds very solid to me in the first few listens.

You hit play and it jumps right out at you.  Then Amy Milan takes over with her beautiful voice, and I’m in love again.  And because the internet totally rules… why not download for free? like why not, really?


That what I am looking forward to in regards to new music coming out next month (and June I suppose).

Another half baked idea I had was to try and start collecting Beatles music on vinyl… but seeing as my record player is on the fritz and I don’t have the wall space to display the album art, maybe that idea will be put on the back burner for now.

Go with yourself.

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