Tag Archives: Flemish Eye Records

Ep. #97: Braids

Braids is an excellent, art-y rock band from Montreal featuring Raphaelle Standell-Preston, Austin Tufts, and Taylor Smith. Originally from Calgary, Braids is a close-knit group whose first album, Native Speaker, was excellent and short-listed for Canada’s Polaris Music Prize (previous winners include Karkwa). Their latest album is 2013’s Flourish // Perish, which is obtainable via Arbutus and Flemish Eye Records and is a moodier, emotionally and musically challenging feat from one of the most accomplished young bands in North America. Braids are on a tour of the eastern and midwestern parts of the United States and they play Montreal’s Il Motore on May 10 and Toronto’s Horseshoe on May 11. Back in November 2013, Raph, Austin, and even press-shy Taylor met with me outside of Toronto where we had a good chat about addictive coffee-flavoured e-cigarettes, a living room in Mississauga with a wooden carpet, rating Halloween candy, a tour oasis and a bitchy cat, my mom, my name Vishal, and our premature births, Austin and Raph’s close, sibling-like relationship, the travails of An Indian From Kitchener, computers versus guitars, special effects and Flourish // Perish, the logical puzzle that is the piano, leaving space in your work so that you can think, how Raph has grappled with mental health issues and public pressure and Flourish // Perish’s uniquely dark tone for an ‘electronic’ record, Austin is a man, the road is long, losing Katie Lee, you’ll have to speak up; the soundman is wearing a towel, female companionship, man conquers machine, machine conquers woman, how the media has manipulated and over-scrutinized Katie’s departure from Braids, the band’s frustration with the way they were portrayed in an Exclaim! Magazine cover story this past fall and how it impacted their already fragile relationship with Katie, the power dynamic between journalists and interview subjects, unique views and clickbait culture, learning from talking, Taylor shows up to discuss abstaining from interviews and their value, Braids’ future plans and progress towards their next record, Joshua Tree National Park and the desert, Good Will Hunting, Back to the Future, the song “Girl,” and that’s it.

Related links: braidsmusic.com vishkhanna.com


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Ep. #20: Chad VanGaalen + Slim Cessna

Chad VanGaalen is a very talented and strange musician, visual artist, animator, filmmaker, father and resident of the good city of Calgary, Alberta. Though ostensibly a homebody, he will occasionally leave the house to tour behind records like 2011’s Diaper Island but it is a pretty rare thing to see him live. That said, he does make a real effort to make it to Sackville, NB for SappyFest whenever he can and he was recently just added to this year’s edition, taking place Aug. 2 to 4. He has also made a new tape that will be on sale exclusively at SappyFest this weekend, and then, if people are dicks, on Ebay by Monday. You can actually hear a song called “NO!!!” from this tape before the end of our conversation.

Slim Cessna’s Auto Club has been wowing audiences for over 20 years now, often inspiring critics to praise the punk-infused country outfit as the best live band in America. Hailing from Denver, Colorado, the group crafts earnest ballads and inspiring gospel songs like few before them. They’ve been closely aligned with the Alternative Tentacles label and shared stages with everyone from Johnny Cash to Jello Biafra. Earlier this year, Slim Cessna’s Auto Club released a comp called SCAC102: An Introduction For Young And Old Europe and, between August 1 and 3, their current tour brings them to London, Toronto, and Ottawa, Ontario for shows. Slim and I chat about that and play a new/old song of theirs.

Related links: flemisheye.com slimcessnasautoclub.com sappyfest.com vishkhanna.com.


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