Sled Island 2010: Top five live
By Kelsey Hipkin
It is the Sunday of my very first Sled Island Festival and while I’m short on a few electrolytes and a lot of sleep, I had a great time bouncing from venue to venue checking out all the different shows that were offered up around the downtown core.
Live shows are always entirely different than recordings and venue always plays a factor in how a show plays out as well. With Sled Island, Selina and I tried to catch as many shows as possible from June 30 to July 2. I didn’t do too shabby, I think, catching 19 shows in varying venues.
So without further ado, here are my Top Five Live for Sled Island 2010.
5. Quintron and Miss Pussycat
Honestly with these guys it was the organ music that did it for me. Organ can be so ominous conjuring iQmages of dramatic frenzy but with Quintron and Miss Pussycat the frenzy is entirely fun. I would definitely catch this Louisiana duo the next time they venture north to Calgary.
4. My Gold Mask
Not only does Gretta Rochelle’s voice have a vintage, haunting quality to it, the girl can also bang out a mean drum. Along with guitarist Jack Amondo, My Gold Mask from Chicago put on a great show. The gem of their act, and probably my favorite song from the entire weekend is an epic cover of Kim Carnes “Bette Davis Eyes”.
3. The Thermals
I caught the The Thermals last night (July 3) at The Republik. I hadn’t been there before and was impressed by how great of a venue it was. The Thermals who hail from Portland, Oregon, comprised of Hutch Higgins on guitar and lead vocals, Kathy Foster on bass and vocals and Westin Glass on drums put on an awesometown show. Their indie pop lyrics and music were some of the best (obviously since they made my list) I’d heard all weekend. They had the folks of The Republik having a grand old time especially when they rocked out their song “Canada” when prompted by the crowd.
2. The Dudes
These Calgary boys most certainly have what it takes when it comes to entertaining a crowd with some great music, and The Legion on Friday night was no exception. I’ll tell you a little secret though, I’ve never seen The Dudes live. I listen to their music and I’ve been to a couple parties where Dan Vacon and the boys of The Dudes and Dojo Workhouse put on a great impromptu jam but this was my first live show. It was great, The Dudes always deliver.
I will admit I was a little wary of !!! (pronounced Chk Chk Chk) when lead singer Nic Offer started prancing and cavorting about the stage; but my hesitation soon turned into fascination as I watched the best live show I have ever seen. With it’s mix of pumpin’ beats, synthesized sound and great guitar, tambourine, trumpet and saxophone, !!! made for a killer act. Offer is a real showman, he danced, he pranced, he poured someone’s beer over his head and used another audience members sweater to wipe the sweat from his face. He rocked out in a Santa Claus t-shirt and kept the mic stuffed in his pocket when he wasn’t using it, taking the time to cater to every corner of the stage. With great backup and accompanying vocals by Shannon Funchess, !!! had the entire Republik waving it’s hands and grooving right along with them. As my one friend pointed out, engaging the whole crowd in a bar like that in Cowtown is rare indeed. Bravo !!!, bravo.
It’s been fun Sled Island…I have to take a nap now.