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Chutzpah! Festival Celebrates Diversity With Multifaceted International Programming

Chutzpah! Festival Celebrates Diversity With Multifaceted International Programming

by Yasmine Shemesh In Hebrew, chutzpah means “brazen audacity.” As such, it’s fitting that the term would be the namesake…

Edmonton Interstellar Rodeo 2015 Day One

Saturday 25th, July 2015 / 14:29
By Jenna Lee Williams

June 24, 2015

 

Wet Secrets at Interstellar Rodeo 2015. Photo (double exposed): Levi Manchak

Wet Secrets at Interstellar Rodeo 2015.
Photos (double exposed): Levi Manchak

EDMONTON — Shortly after entering the gates and with a margarita in hand, Edmonton’s own Wet Secrets took the Interstellar Rodeo stage decked out in their signature red and white marching band uniforms. Many people were still entering the venue as their set begin at 5:50 sharp, but nevertheless the rock and roll outfit encouraged the crowd who was present to come near the front of the stage.

Their set began with a dance-y track that encourages your to “put your left foot forward again!” Soon after a simply choreographed number, the lead singer noted that “It might be a bit early to get profane but this is a song about taking off your clothes.” Their song “If I Was a Camera,” which is complete with space synth riffs and vocal harmonies, followed. They finished with a cover of The Cure track “Boys Don’t Cry” and now the crowd was warmed up and ready for Shakey Graves (Austin, Texas).

Shakey Graves at Interstellar Rodeo 2015. Photos (double exposed): Levi Manchak

Shakey Graves at Interstellar Rodeo 2015.
Photos (double exposed): Levi Manchak

His set started with a full backing band; it was bluesy and soulful. By the end of the set the group of musicians had departed and Graves performed solo, exactly what he is known for.
Before we knew it, Edmonton based singer-songwriter Joe Nolan took the stage. He set was full of harmonica, plenty of reverb and soul.

St. Vincent took the stage after a robotic voice addressed the crowd. Clad in a perforated leather catsuit alongside her bassist, who was in a matching suit, the set began with “Birth In Reverse.” The performance was complete with simplistic robotic dance moves including quarter turns and a shuffle, alternating between the back and the front of the stage. The crowd responded favourably and St. Vincent’s mouth shifted into a warm smile.

St. Vincent at Interstellar Rodeo 2015. Photos (double exposed): Levi Manchak

St. Vincent at Interstellar Rodeo 2015.
Photos (double exposed): Levi Manchak

She put her guitar away for the opening of “Rattlesnake,” but not for long. A guitar for shredding was strapped back on her as the song progressed.

She finally spoke after the fourth track, regarding what all of us have in common. In a rather funny confession, she admitted that one item on the list was stealing a Mars bar from West Edmonton Mall and paying for it with guilt.

The energy picked up again as she performed the slow-burning “Cheerleader,” which eventually picked up the pace. Later, an excellent cover of Depeche Mode’s “Personal Jesus” was done in the most St. Vincent manner possible.

After leaving the stage, she returned solo for an encore, performing “The Party.” The band slowly returned to join her, though the encore was the time for her vocal range to shine. Ending with a traditional bow, the performance was an excellent way to end the evening.

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