2010 events:

  • Jan 13 - Seizure Salad + Bent Spoon Duo w Chad VG
  • WEEDS CAFE (1903 20th AVE NW), 8-10pm, PAY WHAT YOU CAN

    TUESDAY APRIL 5, 2010

    all ages, food & drink


    The Bent Spoon Duo (Chris Dadge and Scott Munro) has spent the better part of the last decade refining their approach to free improvisation. Taking that genre at face value, they play a restless, vaguely psychedelic melange of instruments and homemade sounds, but as one reviewer put it, "Regardless of what is actually used to make these charmingly odd vignettes, it’s fantastic music." Their recent string of releases, on Bug Incision, Holy Cheever Church, and Middle James Co, have been summed up as "superb psychic mindmeld." New recordings with Eric Chenaux will see the light of day in 2010.

    Éric Normand is a composer, improviser, bassist, instrument designer, and record and concert producer, all in one. He defines himself as an epidisci plinary musician, a free electron driven by its yearning for meetings. In his book, composition cannot exist without exchange, since composition consists in setting up a territory that will facilitate improvisation. The interlocutors who have taken part to his numerous composition and production projects are sound engineers, radio producers, musicians, and sound artists. Living in a remote location (Rimouski), he ponders the concept of distance. He builds portable instruments and involves musicians in projects designed with very basic or high-tech communication tools. When he wanders around, he likes to improvises. His latest such meetings have featured Pierre-Yves Martel, Danielle Palardy Roger, Magali Babin and Anne-Françoise Jacques. His music has been programmed by or performed in several festivals in Canada (Festival de Musiques de Création, Jonquière — Reflux — Moncton, Productions SuperMusique — Montréal, Mois Multi — Québec, etc.) and Europe (Festival Rue du Nord — Switzerland, Festival des Musiques Insolentes — France, Les Rencontres à l’Échelle — France, etc). They have also been broadcasted by Radio-Canada, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, CBC, Radio-Grenouille, and several college radio stations.

  • WEDNESDAY, APRIL 21, 2010
    (the acts are listed here last to first, schedule-wise)

    Larry McDowell aka Protagonist/Antagonist:

    Making music/noise under the alias Protagonist/Antagonist, Larry McDowell experiments with rhythmic and melodic atonal call and response to create a pitched psychedelia of droning horror and doom drawing on the concepts of space, time, chaos and cosmos. Using improvised jazz chords played on a moody electric guitar or ambient feedback from patch cables hissing through digital and analogue delay/echo effects, he produces subtle and eerie harmonically layered soundscapes.

    See also: http://soundcloud.com/larrymcdowell

    Matthew Waddell:

    MW is a musician from Montreal who is in Calgary for an extended visit while working on some other projects. A staple of the improvised/weirdo music scene in Montreal, Waddell plays in the excellent group Corse, and will be performing a solo laptop/field recordings/etc piece. More info:

    myspace.com/vortvort | myspace.com/corsesound | matthewwaddell.info


    Talewinds Trio culminates a string of chance encounters, sympathetic musical directions and a rare star alignment. This ensemble ignites the busy blues/ chromatic harmonicas and treasure box items of Alan Briks, the extraordinary soulful vocals and percussion of Jessie McMullan, in resonance with the lush, penetrating sounds of flutist Joan Cobb-Beaumont. Talewinds unwinds into soundscapes of improvisational story-making.

    JM: A student of Jazz Improvisation...engaging in the intuitively thoughtful creative exploration of ideas and emotions...Jatinder, (aka Jessy) is a singer who prefers to vocalize sounds, rhythmic and melodic thoughts that paint impressionistic soundscapes and images.  Although this will be her first walk into experimental music, she feels an excitement of having traveled far only to finally come home.  She has performed in various local and international venues as a Jazz singer, and looks forward to this debut with the talented stylings of her band mates in Talewinds.

    JCB: Having a passion for the flute that developed early in life’s adventure, Joan, has explored it in various venues from school ensembles, a youth orchestra & “pit” orchestras, to pairings with piano, voice(spoken & sung),  choir, organ, strings, horns, percussion. ... She is currently part of a 5 piece band called, “The Rhythm Methods”, performing cover tunes from a broad cross section of decades & genres.

    AB: Spontaneity, the intuitive, an adoration for process are common threads in Alan's endeavours as experimental musician, visual artist and art therapist. Having a jazz/ blues orientation on the harmonica Alan was thrust into experimental music ten years ago, and has since performed in various venues in Ontario and Alberta. ...“Throwing a variegated bunch of  sound-making artists together in a performance situation is an experiment in trust and telepathy, with the promise of an authentic creative process .. an exhilarating adventure”. 

  • MAY 12
    • ERIC HAMELIN - solo perc & electronics - chad vg/nomoreshapes' skinsman takes it on himself - nice!
    • AARON LEANEY - our town's finest sax testifier - solo horn on this night.
    • CHRIS REIMER - one of the guitar fiends from women, also NO HOMO, first seen here.
  • JUNE 16:

    Eric Hamelin and Chris Dadge are two of Calgary's more prominent improvising percussionists, known largely for their work with Nomoreshapes and Bent Spoon Duo, respectively. They also share a secret fascination with guitars, and they will indulge themselves together on this night.


    A V A

    A tornado wrestles a trailer park, a ship sinks beneath the silver mirror of the sea-top, temple gongs ring through an empty valley, industrial machinery sputters, heaves, lurches forward, stops, falls apart… These sound events may be the most acute musical referents of A V A, the solo project of R. Smith (Von Bingen, Shasta Cults, BCVCO). Using analog modular synthesizers, A V A pursues the true sound of the instrument, freed from the tyranny of emulation, no strings/woodwinds/piano presets. A V A ‘s compositions seek out unchartered territories where sustained drones may swell, build, or evaporate; where timbres collide, amplitudes fluctuate, sounds emerge, raw, primeval, new hybrids form from the collisions of electricity and frequency. There may be stretches of silence punctuated by bell-ish tones from futures unheard; a sequence of notes may verge upon melody before mutating into ugly moans, the sonic equivalent of funhouse mirrors. But the end result is far more than chance operation, sporadic sound fields, or indeterminate academic exercise. Instead, A V A brings us back to nature, back to the possibilities inherent in nature, to the truth of evolution, stitching both musical tones, and the sounds of 21st century living into a form which is as real, as imponderable, and as ungovernable as our own memories.



  • JULY 28:
    • Protagonist/Antagonist is Larry McDowell's solo project, always smart and thoughtful.
    • Mark Fleischhaker is a vocalist and drummer, whose intense, short bursts of work have peppered Calgary's improv and metal scenes for the last decade or so. His vocal/electronic improvisations & will be paired with Chris Dadge's kitchen sink percussion. There will be... copies of their new trio CDR with Scott Munro, titled Daikons, for sale at the show.
  • AUGUST 11:
  • AUGUST 28:
    • Beneath These Idle Tides
    • Chris Reimer
    • Blanket
    • separately and together
  • September 22:
    • Eric Hamelin solo
    • Chris Dadge solo
  • October 20:
    • Ferdinand Right (aka Ben Comeau and Bronson Wright)
    • Lowebrau
  • November 17:
    • Whitney Ota + Chris Dadge
      Another first duo performance, this one saxophone+ & drumset+. Ota & Dadge met relatively recently. Ota got his start in improvising while living in Vancouver, where he started various groups, including Wild & Majestic, Natural, and his solo work Yankee Yankee. He also runs the Calgary-based record label Unit Structure Sound Recordings, which features a bunch of his and collaborator's projects, on a variety of formats, all lookin' real good. Dadge has maintained a consistent presence on Calgary's improvised music scene since the early '00s, with acts such Bent Spoon Trio/Duo, Musk Cup, Midnighties, Raw Kites, and many one-offs. Since 2005, he has operated Bug Incision, a record label and concert series. While both musicians are multi-insrumentalists, they have restricted their palettes to sax and drums, both using various forms of electronic enhancement.
      www.myspace.com/yankeeyank eeyankee
      www.bugincision.com/chrisd adge
    • Barr/Over
      This is the debut performance for the guitar duo of Sandy Barron and Mark Overland. Barron's been on the scene for years, filling the mid-'00s with his pop ensemble Remote Kid, and a side project by the name of Disposable Cars. Since then he's released an album with new pop band Thighs, and maintains a steady stream of output as (new solo moniker) Sandy Cassels, and Japanese Steel. Overland's presence in Calgary's scene stretches back even further, largely through his work as Lucid 44. Often a solo venture, but occasinally abetted by friends, this project explores a Jandek-like style of free folk/blues, with a distinctly wooly, hazy sound. Gutterawl is a more band-oriented project that has also appeared in more recent years. Their duo playing is a stream of consciousness, really slow game of tag, with both players contributing fresh, un-cliched melodic improvising, not unlike the Jim O'Rourke/Loren Mazzacane Connors duos from the 90s.
      www.myspace.com/lucid44gut terawl
      http://www.myspace.com/san dycassels
    • Monroewille Music Center
      The self-desribed "music concrete for beginners" is the project of Craig Storm, also a member of various rock combos (The Gooeys, the Wet Pinky Swear) around town. Weird instrumental electronic music, a mixture of backing reel-to-reel tracks, and live keyboard playing.
      www.myspace.com/monroevill emusiccenter
  • DECEMBER 15:
      This duo has been active since 2006, and they released their debut album that year during the early stages of Bug Incision Records. They've worked sporadically since then, and also in the Aaron Leaney Three, along with Thom Golub. Their new album, to be released on this night, widens the margins of their usual approach, incorporating more instruments and playing styles, often confusing their roles entirely.
    • RUBY
      I can't seem to log in my crappy hotmail account right now, where the name of this band is stored. It's a reconfigured version of Seizure Salad, with Britt on drums and Andrew on keys and vocals. If it's anything like SS, it means that trying to describe it would be fruitless. The most confounding duo working in town.
      This is the solo outlet for Mark Fleischhaker, drummer and vocalist for such acts as Lord Something and Flesichhaker-Munro, to name a few recent examples. Mark's been making bizarre music for decades, both in Calgary and Regina, his hometown. Some may have witnessed him terrorizing audiences at Broken City's karaoke nights. This is this project's debut Bug Incision performance.
  • December 22: Close-to-Xmas Special Edition
    • Protagonist/Antagonist
    • Bent Spoon Duo Xmas-Style
    • Chris Dadge, Jay Crocker, Eric Hamelin, Matt Doherty, Rebecca Bruton, Jean-Sebastian Audet, Michael Halls, Scott Munro, Aaron Leaney, Simeon Abbott, and Brad Hawkins
    • 7-11pm - special xmas hours!