"Things are pretty quiet on the Difficult Music, eh, Mule?" said Super Robertson after I intercepted him and Kaiya walking up to the IGA yesterday. Very true. Thing is, it's never quiet anywhere else with me. If I could translate just a fraction of the noise I subject myself to every day onto this page, I'd be happy.
So where have I been?
1. Edmonton—While fancylady was away on her book tour, I went to visit my friend Greg (Dead City Radio) and his family and had a long weekend jamfest out in his Sherwood Park studio. His entomology summer student Brock joined us on bass (bringing along most of the riffage), and we got a fair amount recorded for future tweaking and overdubs.
2. In front of this computer—Finishing up the next Unrestrained! My stuff came together at the last minute as always. I should have four stories in this issue: Estradasphere (a fantastically uncategorizable Santa Cruz instrumental band), Noway's White Willow (another great email interview with Jacob Holm-Lupo), Antiquus (a local band who've just released an impressive album, Eleutheria, through Cruz del Sur), and Toronto writer Yashin Blake, of Titanium Punch fame. I was especially happy to get Yashin in the mag, because I've wanted to interview him for years now and never had the right forum until I got my Media Blitz column. He delivered one of the best email interviews I've ever received. It worked so well, I decided to present it as a straightforward Q & A. I barely had to touch it.
3. Blind Guardian at the Commodore—I barely know this band's material at all (in fact, "Into the Storm" is the only song I recognized, and they opened with it!), but I had a great time. They drew a good crowd of metalheads, most of whom knew every word. I would have never guessed there were so many BG fans here, but I suppose any band that's been around for close to 20 years and released eight albums is going to pick up a following. I thought they had a definite charm. Hansi Kursch is a gruff-but-lovable singer—definitely not the usual power metal castrato—and the rest of the band were rock solid. With the full-on staging, slides and projections, it was the closest thing to a mini-Wacken or Dynamo Festival I'll ever experience.
4. At the movies—Well, a movie. We went to see For Your Consideration Saturday night. Never mind the middling reviews, this is brilliant and hilarious. I'll admit that Christopher Guest's premise—egos flare up during the filming of a humble family drama after a rumour gets out that the lead actress (Catherine O'Hara) might get an Oscar nomination—isn't the most outrageous, nor are the characters as precisely drawn as they were in Waiting For Guffman or Best In Show, but overall the movie hit its (rather broad) targets effortlessly. I think of Guest's movies, with their humane-yet-pointed humour and the presence of O'Hara and Eugene Levy, as the continuation of the spirit of SCTV, and as such, I'll always be there to watch whenever that cast gets together. Also, Fred Willard gets a decent amount of screen time here, and he's completely out of control. To me, he's one of the funniest people on the planet. When's Fernwood 2Night coming out on DVD? Do I have to go look it up on YouTube?
Geez, look at this article, which draws parallels between Fernwood 2Night and Knowing Me, Knowing You with Alan Partridge, which I was just watching this evening. On that bombshell of synchronicity, I'd better get to bed.