August 2011

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Band of the Week: Darren Eedens

There’s dust on these songs. When Darren Eedens sings, it’s like stumbling upon an old record at your grandparents’ house, pulling it out, wiping off the years and dropping the needle in the groove; the Harry Smith Anthology comes to mind. But make no mistake: these songs are as informed by the past as they are a product of today (certain songs betray a bit of a Dave Matthews influence).

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The five most, er, intriguing elements of Doug Ford’s waterfront plan

When Doug Ford revealed his plan for the Port Lands, jaws dropped, people fell out of their chairs and the city suffered another mini-earthquake. Well, maybe not quite. So far, only a few details have surfaced from Ford’s “vision,” but if they’re any indication of what’s to come, our waterfront is on the fast track to becoming very, well, interesting. Below, the potential Fordifications that we’re most excited about.

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Trending in Theatre: The Price, Dreams Really Do Come True! (and other lies), Peter and the Wolf, The Winter’s Tale, The Panel Show

As the season winds down, now’s a great chance to either catch that old show you haven’t seen in a while (The Winter’s Tale) or take in a new show, like the latest one from those crazy clowns over at Second City. Because let’s face it: summer’s basically over, and there’s no better way to fight the sadness than with laughter. As Shakespeare said: “He that is giddy thinks the world turns round.”

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This Week in Sound: k-os, Peter Bjorn and John, Neil Young, Beirut

Convicted genre-transgressor k-os (September 2 @ CNE) wishes that he knew Natalie Portman. Is she in Toronto for TIFF? Can somebody make this happen for the guy? After navigating some mid-career controversy, the Torontonian crossover maestro has spent the past few years doing that other thing musicians do — you know, making songs.

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Bloggers, unite! The first ever 24-hour blogging festival is this weekend

This summer has seen festivals celebrating just about everything: beer, music, organic food, food trucks and more. While most people have been able to find an event related to their interests, one group has been left out: the bloggers. But don’t worry, they won’t be forgotten for long. Word11, the world’s first ever 24-hour blogging festival, is happening at the Center for Social Innovation (CSI) on Aug. 27.

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Art attack: what’s cool (and not-so-cool) about the AGO’s abstract expressionist exhibit

The AGO’s Abstract Expressionist New York exhibit is coming to an end on Sept. 4, so this is your last chance to soak up the splatter and spill of the abstract expressionist movement before the paintings return to their rightful home in New York’s Museum of Modern Art. The exhibit’s got some big names: Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Franz Kline — names which, if you care about art at all, you already either love or hate. Probably hate.

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Bread & Circus, Kensington Market’s tiny theatre-bar, is closing its doors

Even though the dust has barely settled on Toronto’s summer of indie theatre festivals, theatre artists are already gearing up for next year (Fringe applications will be available in a month). But when it comes to next summer’s venues, there will be an obvious gaping hole in the bunch: Bread & Circus, Kensington Market’s tiny-theatre-bar-that-could, is closing its doors this weekend.

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Revenge of the nerds: four reasons your non-dweeb self wants to be at Fan Expo

Anthony Daniels, Star Wars’ man-in-the-golden-mask, was kind enough to answer our Fan Expo questions last week. Now, we’d never want to offend the legions of hard-working, hard-gaming trekkies, comic fans and anime aficionados (we’ve got a few D&D manuals in our closet as well), but it goes without saying that conventions are widely regarded as geek-only dungeons into which “normies” shall not pass.

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How do you get Kevin Sorbo to perform in Toronto? Just tweet about his beard of bees

When you think of Kevin Sorbo — which is bound to happen at one time or another, usually late at night while watching the Sy-Fy channel, of course — immediately one thinks: Hercules! Muscles! Mane! Whether he’s saving ancient Greece from evil warlords as Hercules or saving the galaxy in Andromeda, Sorbo is the ultimate swoon-worthy, swashbuckling hero. So why on earth would he agree to participate in something called Kevin Sorbo Garbage Weekend?

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Band of the Week: Graydon James & The Young Novelists

Making music is a lot like constructing a building. Graydon James & The Young Novelists start with the foundation of a simple acoustic guitar and construct a sturdy frame with the excellent accompanying instrumentation; the songs often build into a joyful wall of sound. But what makes the music feel like home is the beautiful vocal harmonies that James and co. craft together.

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