SAFETY AND FUN TOGETHER AS ONE! Sled Night One.
Sled Island officially kicked off with a bang last night, with an unbelievable set of musicians tearing up Calgary's night sky's with their tantalizing tuneage. Being die hard Sled Island Fans, the Ladywood ladies packed in a full night yesterday and hit up as many shows as our pedal power could get us to.
Here's a rundown of our itinerary and a few highlights of the evening!
Ghibli played to a well lubricated crowd at Bamboo early in the evening. The DJ duo played some very danceable electronic music that was just downright catchy! While it's too bad they were in such a small venue, with an even smaller stage, these guys were a great way to kick off our Sled adventures, nothing too crazy, just the right amount of smooth danecy energy to get up pumped for the evening.
Viet Cong- The Legion Downstairs
Originally intending on sticking around Hifi for a few hours before Bear Mountain's set, we were swept off our feet by a fellow friendly sled biker who suggested we check out the Royal Canadian Legion. Which, if you haven't had the chance to check it out, is a real delight for the senses. Run by a friendly staff of octogenarians, the Legion, in all its dingy glory has hosted some of Sled Islands greatest acts, including Rural Alberta Advantage and Nardwar at Sled 2012 and the legion has some amazing vintage war memorial artwork to keep your eyeballs engaged while your earballs are otherwise so. Viet Cong put on a lively, if slightly erratic show and displayed some impressive stage antics too. There were high kicks. That's all I'm saying.
Crystal Swells- The Legion Upstairs
I'm not going to lie to you, I spent most of of the Crystal Swells set bouncing between the bar and our table, so I only really caught about 10 quality minutes of the show, but from what I saw out of the corner of my eye, it was a delightful mix of surfy, beachy, grungy post punk music. They are well deserving of their name.....I think.
Young Benjamin's -The Palomino
This was one show that I was really looking forward too. The Young Benjamin's, hailing from Saskatchewan have a sweet yet mature sound that belies the bands young age. The basement of the Palomino is always a hilarious venue to watch live music at, as it always smells slightly of beef jerky and hot leather car seats, but jammed up against the bands equipment, right up near the stage, I had the best seat in the house. 'Twas the perfect spot for instagramming the bands well clothed backsides, and instagram I did. Because as we all know, a fun night out doesn't really count unless it's thoroughly documented on social media.
Bear Mountain- Hifi Club
In a mad dash down the rainy streets of downtown Calgary, in our now thoroughly soaked rain gear, we barely made it into Hifi for the beginning of the Bear Mountain set. It was packed in there and everyone was looking enthusiastically intoxicated for the show. Bear Mountain, (who played at Coachella this year and are also on the Lollapalooza ticket), is one of my favourite bands and their live show did not disappoint. It was high energy, engaging and super super fun. Surprisingly, they played their most popular hit Two Step in the middle of their set, which was a delightful surprise for those dedicated fans who usually have to wait around for the tail end of the set to hear their favourite songs. This was a total highlight and I am so pleased we managed to wrangle ourselves together, in all our sodden misery, to catch this show.
Charlie CB- Commonwealth Downstairs
In what was probably the most surprisingly entertaining, yet slightly frightening show of the evening. we stumbled upon hip hop artist/rapper Charlie CB. I think the Sled website describes his style best when they say that "the Austin-TX-based instigator nails that critical halfway point between “gutless sucker” and “knuckle-dragging thug,” and he’s already mastered more rhythmic meters than Shakespeare ever did." The boy can spit some serious beats, and he had the small, but lively crowd knuckle dragging right along with him. Oh and he gave us his CD afterwards, so we are basically best friends now. Right?!?! Right.
HUMANS- Commonwealth Upstairs
These guys, what can I even say about these effervescent fellows. They just get it you know? The Humans show was one of our Sled Island 2012 highlights and we were waiting with breath that was bated, for their 2013 return show. These boys are seriously fun and talented to boot, and even after their late night set had concluded, kept free-styling to some new, unreleased tracks because they were being hopelessly goaded by the swollen, dancey crowd. They are playing again on Sunday night and also tonight at the East Village Bloc party as their reincarnated DJ duo, Sabota.
Whoa! That was a mouthful. What a night it was. Our feet are a little sore and our eyes are a little tired, but we are gearing up for night two -thanks to too many overpriced espresso beverages and an unrelenting desire to party. Can't wait for the East Village Block Party! See you all at 7pm!!!
All the love and happy sledding. Remember, SAFETY AND FUN TOGETHER AS ONE!!!!
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