Tag Archives: the Cure

Ep. #115: Jeremy Gara & Samir Khan of Kepler

Jeremy Gara and Samir Khan are accomplished musicians who once played together in an Ottawa-based band called Kepler. For a good chunk of their time together, they were associated with a kind of slow-building atmospheric music that made them a nice fit to open for Godspeed You! Black Emperor for example. Their final album felt like a real departure to fans who heard its pop-oriented, singer-songwriter leanings when it was first released in 2006. The album is Attic Salt and it was just reissued by a German boutique record label called Oscarson. Here, Samir and Jer and I discuss Roncesvalles Village in Toronto, what tambourines are good for, Soho in London, England, the Rolling Stones, Monty Python’s Flying Circus at O2 Arena, how sometimes records are now commissioned by rich people, patronage, why Attic Salt has been reissued, small bands and big bands, podcast stats, tiny defensiveness, Michael Feuerstack is right, Ottawa’s pointed, smart, and possibly under-appreciated music community, Wooden Stars, Clark the band, Yellow Jacket Avenger, Snailhouse, HILOTRONS, Shotmaker, Okara, when Jeremy wrote Samir a fan letter about Samir’s post-punk band Kluane, Kepler and the Constellation Records loft in Montreal, bass is easy, Sonic Youth is easy, seeing the Cure play live when you’re 12, how Samir ended up in Ottawa after living in Winnipeg, Ottawa’s counter-culture and punk scene, the Pit in Ottawa, Sloan and murderecords, local bands stopped getting love, micromanaging the spectacle, I still don’t know what cynicism means, how Kepler started, the change within Attic Salt, Jeremy’s impact on Kepler, rock music and the myth of progress, Kepler weren’t part of the mid-aughts indie-rock renaissance, Kepler might come back and open for Slowdive, when Jer left Kepler to join Arcade Fire, Jer really misses Kepler and wants the band to play together again, Samir sees making music for a living as a deep, meaningless, bleak pit, things get heavily nostalgic when these dudes really start pondering Kepler, old bands finally getting their due, fans not letting go of the bands they loved as kids, the internet and zombie music, Constantines, the Attic Salt reissue and its rather elaborate packaging that makes it sit weird, Slint and June of ‘44, Attic Salt outtakes that Germans can Google, nice racism, Jer is playing Hyde Park, Keith Richards no longer actually plays guitar when the Rolling Stones are on stage, AC/DC and Malcolm Young, Arcade Fire’s going on a North American tour while Samir eats dinner and works his job, Samir is always chipping away at music stuff, his band Tusks, what the crowd might be like if Kepler played some shows, Kepler should play the Hillside Festival, the song “The Bedside Manner,” the Ottawa Millionaires, Dave Draves, and then reward and respite.

Related links: oscarson.bandcamp.com arcadefire.com vishkhanna.com

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Ep. #87: Bry Webb

Bry Webb is one of Canada’s most distinctive singers, songwriters, and musicians. Based in Guelph, Webb emerged from London, Ontario’s post-hardcore punk scene, fronting an excellent band called Shoulder. In the late 1990s, he co-founded a Guelph-based band called Constantines who had a profound impact on rock music during their 10-year run. In 2011, Webb released Provider, his first solo album and did his best to tour the world behind it as a new father with a day job. On May 20, the Toronto label Idée Fixe will release Webb’s new album. It’s called Free Will, and he’ll be touring behind it a lot this spring and summer, including a hometown show, opening for Destroyer at Kazoo! Fest on Friday April 11. Here, Bry and I discuss what CFRU is all about, what the music community in London Ontario was like when Bry lived there, shy Bry and how punk and skating brought him out of his shell, Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet’s Dim the Lights, Chill the Ham, the practicality of parents, how having kids can alter how one values their own life, what drew him to guitar, AC/DC and the Cure, when MuchMusic was awesome for kids, Skeletons of Society (S.O.S.), getting to play guitar at recess, the post-hardcore band Shoulder and their album Touch, my band Captain Co-Pilot and its connection to Shoulder and the early days of Constantines, 519 hardcore, Call the Office, and the Button Factory, Guelph’s music scene and The Goods CD compilation, Aaron Riches and a key Minnow show featuring Blake, Chili, and Shoulder that foreshadowed Three Gut Records, the Cons’ early reverence for legendary rock figures and how it might have pigeonholed them, that time Constantines broke up on the radio, the lead-up and motivation that brought Bry back to make Provider, how Free Will follows a thread from Provider but also explores more complex emotions, the naming of the record and its connection to the Cons’ Will Kidman, why Constantines are playing shows together again and details about the Shine a Light reissue and shows they’re playing this summer, some of Bry’s solo shows, the brand new song “Positive People” and then it’s over.

Related links: brywebb.com ideefixerecords.com kazookazoo.ca vishkhanna.com

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