Furious at the incurious

Thought is hot, as far as TV on the Radio are concerned

MAKING WAVES: TV on the Radio

They have a strong link with the great body of American poetry, especially Beat poetry,” says David Bowie about Brooklyn’s TV on the Radio, a band who’ve seen a meteoric rise in attention since their second full album, Return to Cookie Mountain, was released last fall. Like Arcade Fire, whose tune “Wake Up” was once graced by the Thin White Duke live, TVOTR’s already propulsive popularity was cemented by Bowie’s vocal contribution to “Province.”

Yes, TVOTR’s lyrics do bear …

Living dread

The return of punky reggae queen Ari Up


“When you’re in a revolution and you set the pace, it’s very easy to lose the path,” she says. With a new solo album, an impending Slits reunion and a celebrated dancehall persona on the side, Ari Up is the mistress of her domain, but as a wounded veteran of England’s punk avant-garde, she knows the rise-and-fall routine well.

The daughter of a rich German publisher, Arianna Forster was raised in a bohemian household in London, where her mother Nora entertained guests such as Joe Strummer, who gave Arianna …

Fast, cheap and under control

Zeke’s Gallery makes live albums to go


“I can’t stand Emerson Lake & Palmer,” announces Chris Hand, the hand that guides Zeke’s Gallery on St-Laurent. He’s certainly not alone in his sentiment, but he does recall ELP’s In Concert, their live album from Montreal’s Big O in ’77, with a note of melancholy. “In the back of my head, there had always been the realization that, by not being an ELP fan, I’d missed out on my one chance to be on a live album.”

Hounded by this inconsolable regret, Hand has doubled up the purpose of …

Disc of the week

Board Up This House (Relapse/Koch)
With metal morphing and finding new directions at an incredibly rapid rate, Genghis Tron can definitely boast of being one of the genre’s most important new faces. Mixing their trademark electronic elements with bone-breaking ballast, the Tron are just devastating on this new one. The 11 songs here will shake you to the core and, like all great records, won’t guarantee satisfaction in a single sitting. Once this scorcher puts down roots, though, it makes its mark with teeth-grinding aggression never sacrificed for innovation’s sake. 9/10 (Johnson Cummins)

The B-52s
Funplex (Astralwerks/EMI)
A …

Man-machine music

Toronto band the New Deal challenge DJs with their live progressive breakbeat house


Before I can even toss my first question at Darren Shearer, drummer of the New Deal, he feels obliged to make a statement of intent, or disintent, which may or may not be inspired by the comments of others about his band–a band that aspires to bring “the vibe and flow of spinning records back to live instruments.”

“We’re by no means dissing DJs,” says Shearer, “but we do feel that we bring more to the table than a DJ can.” And “table” certainly …

Scroll over Beethoven

Video Games Live is not trying to kill the symphony. Quite the opposite, in fact. The hugely successful, American-based video-game-music-playing concert series—touring internationally since 2005 and finally making its first visit to Montreal this week—is trying to get everyone excited about orchestras again. It just so happens this orchestra will be playing the collected works of Mario instead of Mozart.

“Our goal from the beginning was to show the world, not just the hardcore gamer, how culturally significant and artistic video games have become,” says Video Games Live co-creator and host Tommy Tallarico, a video game composer for almost 300 …

She’s so unusual

After the church gig, the sex change, the freak show and the bear costume, NYC’s Baby Dee is at last recognized for her intense and original talent

Let’s get this straight right away—Baby Dee is not your average girl. For starters, she came into the world sporting male genitals, long ago tossed into some medical waste bin somewhere, and launched her post-religious musical career as a transgendered street performer playing flawless harp in New York’s Central Park, all dressed up in a bear costume. Moreover, she’s worked as a freak in various sideshows around the world, including one lengthy stretch …