7 months ago

BeatRoute Magazine BC Print Edition April 2018

BeatRoute Magazine is a monthly arts and entertainment paper with a predominant focus on music – local, independent or otherwise. The paper started in June 2004 and continues to provide a healthy dose of perversity while exercising rock ‘n’ roll ethics. Currently BeatRoute’s AB edition is distributed in Calgary, Edmonton (by S*A*R*G*E), Banff and Canmore. The BC edition is distributed in Vancouver, Victoria and Nanaimo. BeatRoute (AB) Mission PO 23045 Calgary, AB T2S 3A8 E. BeatRoute (BC) #202 – 2405 E Hastings Vancouver, BC V5K 1Y8 P. 778-888-1120


MUSIC BRASS DISHING OUT THE GOLD STANDARD IN HOUSE PARTY PUNK MAT WILKINS Photo by Mike Tan Brass provide high-octane thrills on For Everyone. “Have a good time, so everybody around you can have a good time.” This, according to vocalist Devon Motz, is the fundamental concept that guides Vancouver punk band BRASS, whose music and performances are packed to the brim with a special brand of energy that’s delightfully involving: the kind of energy that makes you feel like the music wouldn’t be what it is without the community that gathers around it. “It needs to be relatable, catchy, and heavy all at the same time,” explains Motz when discussing the band’s distinctive sound, which consists of blistering riffs, high-octane rhythms, and roaring vocals. Each song off of their first full-length, No Soap Radio, acts as a sort of sonic firework, exploding with that intoxicating, quintessentially punk power that’s over almost as quickly as it began. With 10 songs and a total runtime of about 17 minutes, the album doesn’t beat around the bush. “A four-minute song could be a minute-and-a-half song when you get rid of everything that’s boring.” Yet despite their length and relative rowdiness, each BRASS song contains a healthy dose of lyrical depth, dealing with subjects like mental health and substance abuse. According to Motz, the brutally honest (and often self-deprecating) lyricism in their work ties into their veiled philosophy on musical honesty and community involvement. “I think bad feelings are worth celebrating, because they’re fucking feelings, man,” he says. “[Writing] a catchy song about being depressed is better than being depressed.” Their next album, For Everyone, will veer away from this path, touching on relatable topics outside of the lyrical self-loathing found throughout their debut LP. For Everyone is set to live up to its namesake, with a huge breadth of subject matter and riffs written for audiences to “let loose, be safe, inclusive, and have fun.” BRASS is a band that adheres to the gold standards of identity, involvement, and energy. They write songs and play shows meant to lift people up out of their seats and out of their stupors, and will continue to do so all over our city and beyond – so long as we keep dancing. BRASS play their For Everyone album release show April 7 at The Cobalt. HERON SLOWLY CLAWING YOUR FACE OFF JAMILA POMEROY Stepping into the jam space of Vancouver doom metal band Heron, there is laughter, talk of album art by macabre artist Cryptworm, and a slight skunky haze. This atmosphere is beyond fitting for a genre which is often visually represented with dark psychedelic art and imagery of cannabis culture. While the four-piece has been prominent in the scene, their forthcoming release, A Low Winter Sun, will be their first full-length album. A Low Winter Sun is not your typical doom metal album, as the band has incorporated elements of thrash, sludge, and post-metal into their sound. The band recorded the album locally at Rain City Recorders, with producer Jesse Gander (3 Inches of Blood, Bison BC, White Lung). “We’ve been building on this record for about two years now, explains vocalist Jamie Stilborn. “It’s not a concept album, but we’ve tried playing the songs in different orders and it fucks us up. It just feels right to be played and listened to in the order [that the songs] are in.” Stilborn tends to write lyrics centered on esoteric and existential concepts with inspiration drawn from film and philosophy, tackling heavy subjects with optimism and positivity. This approach perhaps sets them apart from many bands in the doom metal scene, who often drift lyrically towards dark themes with nihilistic viewpoints. While their music never features clean vocals, Stilborn aims to use vocals as an instrument of their own. Sonically their heavy, bass-driven sound blends beautifully with their spacey and unconventional song structures, sounding comparatively to bands like Sleep and YOB. This is some serious melt your face off music. Heron has shared the stage with big names in doom and sludge metal, including High on Fire and Pallbearer. “I think that was probably my biggest accomplishment, opening for High on Fire,” says guitarist Scott Bartlett. “I’m a huge fan of Matt Pike, High on Fire, and Sleep, so it was pretty incredible. The band acknowledges there is a deep sense of community and connection within the doom scene, in comparison to other sub-genres of metal. Heron emphasize their excitement in continuing to play with the bands they have connected with, spanning across the country and down the West Coast. “There is a really good vibe happening right now with the band,” says Bartlett. “We keep pushing forward. That’s really the bottom line for us. As long as we are having fun and making good music, I think we are doing things right.” Heron play the Astoria on April 17. Photo by Milton Stille Scott Bartlett, Jamie Stilborn, Ross Redeker, and Bina Mendozza bring crushing doom riffage while tackling deep lyrical themes. 24 April 2018

HOGAN SHORT Almost exactly a year ago, the beloved show from Comedy Central, Workaholics, concluded with its seventh season. Workaholics was more than just a stoner comedy about three dimwitted telemarketing bros with a complete lack of self-awareness; the show brought quick-witted sketch-style comedy to the mundane lifestyles of underachievers who just want to have fun. Workaholics was beloved by girls and guys alike, whether they were in their teens, 20s, 30s, or even 50s. So when it was announced that the gang of Adam (Adam DeVine), Ders (Anders Holm), and Blake (Blake Anderson) would be back barely a year later with a Netflix film playing another trio of idiots, people let high hopes grow. If you were a fan of Workaholics, then their new film, Game Over, Man! (a play on Bill Paxton’s famous line from Aliens), is exactly what you have been missing. The film is Kyle Newacheck’s first featurelength credit as a director, who also co-created Workaholics and directed most of its episodes. The premise of Game Over, Man! is simple: three underachieving, unintelligent housekeepers at a luxury hotel must stay alive and save the day when they get caught up in a hostage takeover. Newacheck, DeVine, Holm, and Anderson work together to collaborate on ideas. “We all worked on it,” says Newacheck. “Anders is the writer, but we all work as a team when developing. That mushrooms episode from Workaholics was really great and inspired by Die Hard. Collectively, Die Hard is our favourite movie. So we said ‘Let’s make a Die Hard movie and make it funny.’ The stakes are really high and it’s life and death and you have these three stooges running around. Other producers came on, like Seth Rogen, and they have experience making these movies. They helped us with our emotional line with the three guys, they cleaned it up, added a few jokes. The four of us would take notes and then, as a director, that’s where I come in to figure out how we actually do this.” Writing a film and getting it into production is always difficult enough, but this group’s style of comedy relies on being instinctually funny. Like Workaholics before it, Game Over, Man!’s laughs rely heavily on improv, and that requires a director who knows how to best capture spontaneity. This group has been working together for so long that the jokes and lines delivered throughout Game Over, Man! never feel forced and always elicit big laughs from its three stars. “You don’t get that natural connection without improv and multiple cameras capturing it,” he says. “Back in the day, I just moved the camera while they improvised. It’s at the core of who we are. You can have scenes on the page and then the emotion isn’t necessarily there. When you put real friendship behind it, then you can start improvising the jokes.” Since Game Over, Man! is set in a luxury hotel, it makes sense that there would be some celebrities staying there. This plot device is perfect for the inclusion of some unpredictable cameos, and casting celebrities to come together for a quick scene to play themselves is an interesting task. “You would be happy to know that Shaggy was in from day one,” Newacheck laughs. “Poor Anders, he wrote and rewrote that script like eight times. Every single time, Shaggy has been in it, singing at gunpoint. It was relevant and perfect. He flew over from Jamaica. As soon as his headshot came up, everyone else started coming in, too. People like Steve-O, they just came out because they were fans.” One thing fans know for sure about DeVine is that he is never afraid to take it all the way; DeVine seems to be the one most drawn to making a complete fool of himself for the sake of the scene. In Game Over, Man!, he goes where too few men have gone on film. His character not only goes full frontal, but close up and at every angle. “Adam is just the guy who will do that,” says Newacheck. “I lived with him for seven years, and let’s just say he’s never been shy about his dick. It’s not a surprise to me at all that he would take it there. He is known to do that. It was a closed set. I was sitting there behind the camera right behind him and speaking quietly and seriously saying, very literally, okay, now loosen up.” Newacheck’s character on Workaholics, Karl, was such a fan favourite that he could easily be the fourth member of their quartet. But while fans might hope for Newacheck to make an appearance in the film, for this project, he decided to stay in the director’s chair. “I never considered putting myself in the film, but everyone else did,” he says. “For this one, there just wasn’t a role. Karl – that was me. I was so into it and I loved it. For this, I wanted to establish myself as a director.” If you are someone who has never seen Workaholics, then Game Over, Man! is a great introduction to the group. If you love Workaholics and have seen every episode six times, depressed that no new episodes are coming, then consider this film a welcome reprieve. If you hate Workaholics, then this movie probably isn’t for you. Game Over, Man! is available on Netflix now, right on time for 4/20. April 2018 25

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