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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. editor@beatroute.ca BeatRoute (BC) #202 – 2405 E Hastings Vancouver, BC V5K 1Y8 P. 778-888-1120

FILM ISLE OF DOGS WES

FILM ISLE OF DOGS WES ANDERSON’S PUP-MOTION FAILS TO RAISE THE WOOF MAGGIE MCPHEE THIS MONTH IN FILM BRENDAN LEE You Were Never Really Here – April 6 A man, a hammer, and a girl he never imagined he’d have the heart to care for. Winner of Best Actor and Best Screenplay awards at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival, Joaquin Phoenix’s performance promises a gutpunch to the psyche. A Quiet Place – April 6 The louder the scream, the better the chance they’ll find you. John Krasinski and partner in crime, Emily Blunt, tackle the horror genre with a unique twist that could very well lead us all to a land of silent nightmares. Indian Horse – April 13 An adaptation of the late Richard Wagamese’s great Canadian novel, Indian Horse follows a young Indigenous boy in 1970s Canada. From hopeful beginnings as a talented ice hockey player, the boy grows up to face the harsh realities of holding on to identity in a world that’s trying to rinse it out of you. Super Troopers 2 – April 20 The Broken Lizard comedy group is back, 17 years after the unconventional state troopers first pranked, drank, and smoked their way into everyone’s hearts. With the return of the original cast, the sequel promises to be undeniably unwholesome in all the right ways. A lot of old dogs and a even few new tricks apparently isn’t enough to keep Isle Of Dogs out of the doghouse. Isle of Dogs raises the bar for contemporary American animations. Wes Anderson approached his stop-motion fable with the same attention to detail and craftsmanship as the great Hayao Miyazaki, elevating him as America’s auteur animator equivalent. A team of 27 animators laboured endlessly to imbue their puppets with life, emotion, and vitality. They handcrafted every object and assigned specialists for emotional nuance, action scenes, and comedic timing. The team’s work, partnered with Wes’ unmistakable style, birthed a film of visual splendor, and French composer Alexander Desplat delivered a soundtrack to match. Unfortunately, the story and characters don’t live up to the film’s sensory resplendence. Dogs takes place in a dystopian future Japan, while the houndhating municipal governor quarantines all canines on Trash Island due to a “dog-flu” outbreak. When 12-year-old Atari crash-lands his plane on the island, a pack of pups accompanies him on the search for his lost dog, Spots. The fictional dog-hating culture traces back to ancient Japanese dynasties, granting the film a scope too epic for its tale of love between boy and dog. A chasm between the plot’s scope and artistic minutiae leaves much room to fall flat. The all-star cast, comprised of Anderson veterans Bill Murray, Edward Norton and Tilda Swinton – and two dozen other mentionable names – packs Dogs with a lot of weight. But the story flits between the government bodies, prodog activists, and Trash Island ruffians so fast there’s no time to get to know their characters in depth. It’s difficult to care about what’s at stake when we aren’t invested in who’s involved. The film flows at a brisk pace as a determined camera sweeps the audience through bright and inventive landscapes. However, there is no evident reason for a Japanese setting other than an aesthetic one, and the film has been criticized for its tone-deaf appropriations of Japanese culture. Perhaps this prioritization of aesthetics is the film’s greatest downfall. Anderson’s clinical attention to detail left him with a case of tunnel vision that compromised the core of his story. Disobedience – April 20 From Academy Award Winning Director Sebastián Lelio comes a passionate take on forbidden desire. A shunned woman returns home and reignites the relationship with a female childhood friend that cast her out in the first place. With sweltering friction, the film stars Rachel Weisz and Rachel McAdams. You Were Never Really Here FRIDAY LATE NIGHT MOVIES! 19+ VALID ID FOR BAR SERVICE VISIT WWW.RIOTHEATRETICKETS.CA FOR SHOW TIMES & TICKET PRICES APRIL 6 THE BIG LEBOWSKI APRIL 13 ARMY OF DARKNESS APRIL 20 HEAVY METAL APRIL 27 PAPRIKA MAY 4 STAR TREK 2: WRATH OF KHAN 26 April 2018

MUSIC REVIEWS Jack White Boarding House Reach Third Man/Columbia Jack White has been called a lot of things – minimalist, revivalist, madman, genius, protagonist, antagonist, lover, fighter – probably all true, or true enough. One thing’s for sure, Jack’s a creator who loves making art. Now suppose for a moment we suspend our belief that pop music, any and all of that stuff made to be marketed for immediate consumption, did not have a hit factor assigned to it. In other words, we didn’t rate or predict how much radio play, units moved or YouTube views a song or album got or was worthy of. Rather we assessed music only for its art value, not for its potential to chart and sell. It’s still hard for those familiar with Jack to remove his association with the White Stripes. He’s constantly compared to the success of his musical debut. Such is the nature of the biz: you’re only as good as your last record. And in Jack’s case, for many it’s still those records he made with Meg. But Jack doesn’t roam in that world anymore. He lives in the land of art for art’s sake, which is the starting point for Boarding House Reach. As the pulsating vibe of the album’s opener “Connected By Love” continues to build, the midsection of the song suddenly bursts into a frenzy of weird guitar loops and crazy keyboard soloing. Then, just as suddenly, it drops down to near silence with only a soft piano and warm bassline playing while Jack pleads and cries out, “Forgive me, and save me from myself!” Sisters Ann and Regina McCrary soon follow and lend their powerful voices pushing the chorus into a climatic spin of strange, vibrating electronics and full gospel sounds. When it finally settles, it’s easy to image Jack the madscientist running around his lab tweaking dials and fiddling with gadgets moreso than Jack the musician headphones on bellowing into a studio mic. Jack the scientist is not such a peculiar analogy given his first career he flourished as a tradesman in his upholstery shop. Boarding House Reach has that sound and feel all over it – the studio is Jack’s laboratory, his new shop, and his trade is mixing weird science with rock ‘n’ roll producing strange musical concoctions. Jack also loves gospel. On “Why Walk A Dog” a church organ forcefully pumps out two chords swaying back and forth as if someone was standing on the keys instead pressing down on them with their hands. It’s a big churchy blast that gives away to a brooding guitar solo that’s more akin to motorized output signal that grinds up and down as it’s put through an electronic oscillator. Weird, yes. Wonderful as well. The marriage of soul and sci-fi sonics works quite well. Moving into funk and R&B, “Ice Station Zebra” is chopped and sliced with jazzy breaks and machine-gun breakdowns with some fine multilayered rappin’ by Jack that’s right up there with the Beasties. Taking a sharp turn and heading into very different territory, “Abulia and Akrasia” showcases the talents of Australian blues singer C.W. Stoneking, who does a spoken-word sermon over a sad, spiritualized Middle Eastern violin and tinkering piano. While the manic pace of “Over and Over and Over” with its fuzzed-out electro-romp and haunting, alien chants, parallels the eerie universe of Bowie’s “Black Star”. Staying in a strangeland, Hal’s omnipresent mechanical voice from 2001: A Space Odyssey is filtered through a cheesy TV commercial that leads off “Everything You’ve Ever Learned”. The track then proceeds to ramp up into a harrowing garage-jazz-psychedelic freakout that cuts right into a late ’60s B-movie, biker soundtrack. There’s A LOT going on in Jack’s lab. His experiments dabble in 10cc’s quirky pop and Roxy Music’s avant-garde art rock, then travel through the Beatles’ playground on the White Album before pulling into the carnival factory-works of latter-day Tom Waits. Boarding House Reach is an endless experimentation, fused with sci-fi creations that are, yes, wonderfully weird. Will any of these tracks chart? Who cares. It may not be commercial, but it’s art. Good art where Jack takes on a new classification by transforming himself into a complex futurist. • B. Simm • Illustration by Danielle Jette April 2018 27

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