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Thursday, May 7, 2020

EVERYSEEKER Festival moves online, continues melting your mind with offbeat art

Over 35 free, streamable pieces of programming means the head trip can't stop/won't stop.

Posted By on Thu, May 7, 2020 at 6:20 PM

NAT Chantel told The Coast in 2019 that, to her, sound is "a way to say 'I'm here'." - MEGHAN TANSEY WHITTON PHOTO
  • NAT Chantel told The Coast in 2019 that, to her, sound is "a way to say 'I'm here'."
The festival formerly known as OBEY knows that, while we still have to keep our distance socially, nothing need stop our minds converging under art's wild and varied umbrella. And, by moving to a completely online, 100 percent free festival, EVERYSEEKER is making sure of just that. From May 15 to June 30, a series of performances ranging from alt-R&B to experimental pop to performance art will beam through your phone and remind you, even if it's only for a minute, how art will be what gets us through this (along with washing our hands, obvs).

While the entire lineup looks fire (and exact showtimes are still TBD), a few early stars piquing our interest include the Toronto neo-soul singer Kwento; the mystical rap of Charlottetown's LXVNDR; the soul-awakening sound art of  Halifax's own NAT Chantel (shown above) and the DJ/mixing of NYC artist TRNSGNDR/VHS.

Peep the full lineup—including a show by this week's Coast cover star, Aquakulturehere.
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Monday, May 4, 2020

Bring Halifax culture home with The Coast's arts streaming guide May 4-10

What to watch this week for social connection with physical distance.

Posted By on Mon, May 4, 2020 at 2:34 PM

Triple-threat Zamani is cooler *and more prolific* than you. Sit in awe on Thursday night. - CAROLINA ANDRADE PHOTO
  • Triple-threat Zamani is cooler *and more prolific* than you. Sit in awe on Thursday night.

Monday, May 4

Campbell Woods

Fresh folk for your ears at 4pm via Facebook Live.

Trivia for Shut-ins

Halifax trivia hosts-about-town Jason Dorey and Andrew Evans have shifted their popular triv game from pubs like Durty Nelly's, the Lion's Head and The Fickle Frog, to a Facebook livestream. Three 20-question rounds will challenge, amuse and delight, and with no prizes on the line, you won't even mind missing a few answers. The stream opens every Monday at 7pm, first question at 7:30.

Tuesday, May 5

Kristen Martell

The singer-songwriter who's work is the aural answer to liquid sunshine keeps up her house show streak with another Tuesday night tune-fest. Hit up Facebook or Instagram at 10pm to follow along and bliss out.

The Big Sing: Mayworks Edition

The festival celebrating working people and the arts has combined forces with the beloved all-levels pop chorus to help you sing it out as COVID-19 continues. The tunes in question? CCR's "Proud Mary" and Wilson Phillips' "Hold On," being sung together on both Facebook and Instagram at 7pm. Get more info about Mayworks' 2020 all-digital fest here and learn more about The Big Sing here.

Wednesday, May 6

Tim Baker

The former Hey Rosetta! frontperson is steadily building his own musical legacy and, in a move showing how far his solo career has grown, he'll be hopping on total GOAT Jenn Grant's Instagram and Facebook to do a live show at 6pm.

JP Cormier

Missing seeing the guitar god do his thing from a downtown Halifax stage? This'll be pretty close to the same thing. The noodling begins at 9pm on Youtube.

Thursday, May 7

Owen Meany's Batting Stance

Literary folk at its best, OMBS is known for its banter-y live sets. We can't wait to see how it transfers the experience to your phone—but we know it'll be great.  Catch it at 6pm on Instagram Live and get to know the band here.

Jody Upshaw w/Zamani

A double dose of R&B-fuelled girl power awaits as two of the city's brightest young talents take turns crushing the mic. It kicks off at 7pm via the African Nova Scotian Music Association's Facebook page. (Not familiar with this, the most dynamic of duos? Read about Zamani and Upshaw already!)

David Myles

The Halifax-based crooner is back—this time, with a set of romantic songs as smooth as silk sheets. Hear 'em first at this album release show (held at 9pm via Youtube) and then send one to your crush with the line "there's no social distance between your heart and mine" and prepare for a zoom romance like no other.

Torquil Campbell

The Stars and Broken Social Scene frontperson offers an evening of song, stories and general strangeness via The wild ride kicks off at 10pm.

Friday May 8

Adam Baldwin

Your weekly date with Dartmouth's Americana mainstay is a COVID tradition at this point and that's sort of beautiful, no? It continues at 9pm via Youtube.

Dave Sampson

The Cape Breton king with a dash of Nashville in his sound gives a showcase at 9pm via Facebook Live. Don't know Sampson? Get introduced as he answers our questionnaire, Ten questions with... 

James Jones of RedPath Talent

A blend of traditional Indigenous dances and hip hop inspired moves, Jones reminds us what moving poetry looks like at 10pm via Facebook Live.


The R&B act that's about to pop off on the national stage celebrates the release of its long-awaited debut LP, Legacy, with this socially distant take on an album release show. It's also a hot wing challenge so order an extra bottle of hot sauce in your next grocery run, ya dig? It all goes down on Instagram at 6pm.

Saturday, May 9

Alan Syliboy & The Thundermakers

The culturally-rich, immersive rock of Syliboy and his Thundermakers will take you to a higher plane. Let it. The show goes on at 7pm via Facebook Live.

Matt Mays

If you wanna drink up the fresh air feeling while not being able to get out all that much, Mays is your man—he's the only one besides Tom Petty who can make you feel like you're driving with the top down, full-blast when you're actually just sitting still. Catch the vibes on Youtube at 9pm.

Sunday, May 10

Christina Martin

Fresh off the release of a new, live version of her award-winning 2018 record Impossible To Hold, Martin keeps reminding us of the magic living in live music.  Get enchanted as she performs via Facebook Live at 4pm.

Jill Barber

The silver-throated singer wants to shout-out the mother figures in your life with a special Mother's Day themed show, happening at 4pm via


Throwing a virtual art event or hosting an online concert? Email it to The Coast so we can add it to the Halifax streaming guide.

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Thursday, April 30, 2020

What Team Coast is currently streaming

The five songs we can’t get enough of this week.

Posted By on Thu, Apr 30, 2020 at 4:02 PM

We can't wait for Aquakultre's upcoming album Legacy —but until it's out, we'll keep playing "I Doubt It" on repeat. - COLIN MEDLEY PHOTO
  • We can't wait for Aquakultre's upcoming album Legacy —but until it's out, we'll keep playing "I Doubt It" on repeat.
  • Colin Medley photo
Working from home tip number 546? Create a boss-ass playlist to keep you psyched and capture some calm. Here, we share a handful of tracks we've been playing on repeat this week—all linked below for your listening needs.

“Their Love Was Alive Before They Were Dead” by Joshua Van Tassel

Sound architect Joshua Van Tassel—a Nova Scotian native—made a name for himself producing many of Canada’s indie darlings, from Rose Cousins to Great Lake Swimmers. On his new single, released earlier this month, he shows he might just be at his best when no one’s there to reign him in, building a lush, lyric-less world that feels as soothing as ASMR.

“Trick of the Light” by Norma MacDonald

Back with her first album in five years, Halifax music scene vet Norma MacDonald has tapped into and harnessed the alt-country potential she’s long held, delivering a set of songs fans of Emmylou Harris and The Dixie Chicks will devour. Lead single “Trick of the Light” captures the essence of a maligned genre and, quite simply, has made a convert out of anyone at The Coast who was previously country-adverse.

“I Doubt It” by Aquakultre

 A souped-up revolution anthem from Halifax’s neo soul superstar-in-the-making, the single “I Doubt It” promises that Lance Sampson (AKA Aquakultre)’s upcoming debut LP will live up to our sky-high expectations. Throw it on to rekindle your social justice spark—or just to remind yourself what an ass-shaking dance party feels like.

“The City Loves Me” by Beauts

Remember how every nerve in your body lit up the first time you heard Wintersleep? The opening track to Beauts’ album Dalliance gives the same immediate reaction, making us think that the scrappy-melodic five-piece might just be heirs to the city’s alt-rock heart, indeed.

“Melt The Universe With Brotherly Love” by Joel Plaskett

The epic, four-disc, 44-track new album by the King of Dartmouth is equal part Rubber Soul-era Beatles trip and mantra for these trying times. It’ll make you feel free and swaddled all at once and should be administered daily for best results.

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Monday, March 23, 2020

Six ways to broaden your mind wider than social distance requirements

Your body might be atrophying on the couch but your brain doesn't have to.

Posted By on Mon, Mar 23, 2020 at 4:50 PM

Roxanne Smith's The Mirror is one of many local artworks you can get up close and e-personal with by viewing Teichert Gallery's new, online-only showcase. - ROXANNE SMITH PHOTO
  • Roxanne Smith's The Mirror is one of many local artworks you can get up close and e-personal with by viewing Teichert Gallery's new, online-only showcase.
  • Roxanne Smith photo
So here you are, googling work-from-home hacks; making your own sourdough starter; generally trying to figure out what our new normal looks like as the province enters a state of emergency and COVID-19 continues to shake our world. You're bored or busy with remote work or maybe both. Time has never felt more like a construct.

How do you stop the days bleeding into each other as you self-isolate? How do you fill the time as your social calendar is scrubbed clean? What is left to do when you've swum so far into the depths of Netflix you need to come up for air?

You feed your brain. You engage with culture, even if it's through a screen because that's what life right now demands. You breathe deep, open a new browser tab, and enrich your self-quarantined life. Here are some ideas from 
learning to sing, to virtually  visiting a gallery  to get you started:

Learn to sing with Arsoniste
The Halifax-based alt-pop singer-songwriter has the sort of floaty voice that feels like gossamer on your eardrums. Now, she's helping you work your pipes, too, teaching online voice and piano lessons during COVID-19. Email or DM her on Instagram to start your own musical journey. Rates start at $45.

See the world thanks to the Google Arts & Culture app
A free way to see thousands of iconic artworks and landmarks from around the world, up close and personal thanks to the detail-enriching zoom feature. Swipe through New York's best street art, take a virtual tour of the Eiffel Tower, project famous paintings onto your wall to recreate the gallery experience and much more. Download it through the Apple App Store or Google Play.

Connect with local art thanks to the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia and Teichert Gallery
To give you a daily dose of creative excellence, the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia is treating COVID-19 as a chance to acquaint its social media following with works from its permanent collections. Follow the gallery on Facebook so you can see vital works ranging from Maud Lewis' country scenes to Leonard Paul's landscapes.

Teichert Gallery, meanwhile, has taken its most recent exhibit, Halifax Art Map: Art OFF The Map completely online so you can see piece by artists living in the city.

Check out something new from the library
As we reported Friday, Halifax Public Libraries has made it possible for you to apply for a library card electronically. This means a whole world of books, magazines and more has just opened up for you to download to your device of choice. There are also options to learn another language or pick up a new skill like photography or coding. Read more here.

Dive into the deeps with The Ocean School
The Ocean School has launched a free crop of daily online activities aimed at the Grade 7 to 9 set but, tbh, we think this e-learning course will help adult ocean lovers feel satiated with tidbits like a 360 degree video about why sharks are awesome and more. Get started here.

Learn a new language with Duolingo
The lil' green owl is back to help you learn French, Spanish or one of 30 other languages through a mix of quizzes, questions and the new stories feature, where you read and listen along to slice-of-life situations in your soon-to-be second language. The app reported last week a record-breaking uptick in users as COVID-19 continues, adding more new features are on the way. Download it for free through the Apple App Store or Google Play.

And, as always: Keep washing your hands. Wipe commonly used surfaces. Stay home if you feel sick. Check 811 to see if you qualify for testing—if you're sick but don't qualify, stay home anyways. If you feel sick, don't go to work—and be kind to those who have to. 
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Tuesday, March 17, 2020

East Coast Music Awards get COVID-cancelled

Twenty-eight Halifax-based acts were set to perform at the annual ECMA fest.

Posted By on Tue, Mar 17, 2020 at 5:16 PM

Adam Baldwin was set to play at the ECMAs as he celebrated last year's Dire Straits'y EP No Rest For The Wicked. - MATT WILLIAMS PHOTO
  • Adam Baldwin was set to play at the ECMAs as he celebrated last year's Dire Straits'y EP No Rest For The Wicked.
  • Matt Williams photo
Once the Junos called it curtains, we should've known this would be next: The East Coast Music Awards, a music festival, awards ceremony and local industry booster in equal measures, announced today it's cancelling its 2020 event in St. John's, Newfoundland as COVID-19 concerns continue.

"We are admittedly devastated to cancel this event and our thoughts are with all of the hard working musicians and industry professionals who are facing a tremendous degree of uncertainty in the face of this unprecedented public health issue," reads a press release from the board of directors.

The ECMAs are a chance for musicians to connect with fans and wow new crowds, of course, but playing the Maritime Grammys is also a significant networking opportunity lost for invited artists. From Clayton Park's own triple-threat Zamani to Halifax music vet Leanne Hoffman to the Dire Straits-y rock 'n' roller Adam Baldwin, 28 Halifax-based sets of golden vocal chords would've been performing at the weekend-long event that was slated for April 29 to May 3.

Continue reading »

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Thursday, March 12, 2020

Junos cancelled due to COVID-19 concerns

At least we can still stream award host Alessia Cara's excellent album The Pains Of Growing while we self-quarantine.

Posted By on Thu, Mar 12, 2020 at 2:32 PM

Alessia Cara was slated to host and perform at the Juno Awards this weekend. - ALESSIACARA.COM SCREENSHOT
  • Alessia Cara was slated to host and perform at the Juno Awards this weekend.
  • screenshot
Saturday, March 15 was supposed to see Saskatoon overrun with some of the most luminous stars in Canadian music as the 49th Juno Awards doled out statuettes that look sorta like The Oscar dude doing a ribbon dance.

Instead, the doors of the SaskTel Centre will be closed, as CBC Music says the awards are being cancelled amidst growing concerns of COVID-19. The Canadian equivalent to The Grammys is not the first arts-related event to be shelved as public concern grows: earlier this week music festivals South By Southwest and Cochella were cancelled and postponed, respectively.

CBC quotes a press release from The Junos and the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, saying "We are devastated to cancel this national celebration of music, but at this time of global uncertainty, the health, safety and well-being of all Canadians must stand at the forefront of any decisions that impact our communities."

Continue reading »

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Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Listen to this: Laura Roy's "Halifax"

London's biggest R&B star-on-the-rise shouts out her hometown with a stripped-back new single.

Posted By on Tue, Mar 10, 2020 at 12:41 PM

"You cant just move back to a city and everything will be fine," says Roy. - SUBMITTED PHOTO
  • "You cant just move back to a city and everything will be fine," says Roy.
  • Submitted photo
Laura Roy doesn’t miss home. The R&B superstar-on-the-rise has been too busy making London her city to think much about Halifax: This much is clear when she answers the phone to chat about her new single while simultaneously piling in the van for the next tour stop, supporting Anne-Marie (a sort of British Carly Rae Jepsen with over 25,090,000 monthly listeners on Spotify).

Singing backing for Anne-Marie is the sort of thing Roy dreamed of when she left Halifax (well, the waterfront campus of NSCC in Dartmouth if we want to be specific) for Toronto, the city everyone told her she needed to move to to make it. Her music, meanwhile, a slick unspooling of R&B-drenched pop, is synth-baked enough to make anywhere feel like a dance floor and feels decidedly more UK than TO—making her jump across the Atlantic make sense.

But, as she spends time recording a new EP, Roy—who grew up in Canning, Nova Scotia— is taking a break from her Lianne La Havas-influenced brand of lovelorn dance music to drop a “new, stripped back” single, called “Halifax.”

The song was recorded as “just a one-take in my living room, very intimate. It was about a relationship, but the idea of attaching to places or things when you have to let go to be able to move forward and grow. You cant just move back to a city and everything will be fine,” says Roy.

She’s excited for this rainy afternoon anthem, adding: “My last couple of releases were quite stripped back. I think people enjoy that because you can really hear my voice and music. People back home know me for that. There’s a focus on the actual song and putting something out that’s raw and personal.”

And while “Halifax” brings to mind the old adage that you can never go home again, Roy also hopes this song will prove to be more than just an ear worm: “I really want people to feel something, to listen to music and feel connected to it.”

See (er, listen) for yourself:

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Thursday, March 5, 2020

Ten questions with Villages

"A buddy of ours once described us as sounding like the Rankin Family if they were produced by Brian Eno," the Cape Breton four-piece shares.

Posted By on Thu, Mar 5, 2020 at 5:51 PM

The Villages lads mean muggin'. - DYLAN CHEW PHOTO
  • The Villages lads mean muggin'.
  • Dylan Chew photo
After recently signing to the same label as Matt Mays and Hey Rosetta! (that's Sonic Records, for those keeping track), it feels safe to say that world domination is next for Villages. The Cape Breton four-piece are folk, sure, but in a way that's more Fleet Foxes-y than jigs-and-reel: addictive and emotive but as fresh as a blast of sea air. Back in Halifax after an extensive western Canada tour, the band will open for Matthew Good at The Marquee Ballroom (2037 Gottingen Street) March 6 and 7.

We caught up with the crew in advance of the gigs to talk TV addictions and pre-show routines. 

1. What is the most non-negotiable part of your pre-show routine?

Jon: Our pre-show routine has changed a bit over the years but one thing that remains non-negotiable is that we hang out together before a show. Even if we are playing a hometown show, we make it a point to get together and chill as a group. Post-show, we usually hit the Dominos app.

2. Tell us about a TV show or movie you’re totally obsessed with right now?

Archie: Spoiler alert: I’ve recently put a good-sized dent in The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel series. It’s about an upper-class housewife that kind of stumbles into doing stand-up comedy in New York City during the late 1950s and early 1960s. There are definitely similarities between comedians and musicians and the ups and downs they experience. So, it’s rad to watch this show about a performer starting from the bottom, to getting her first big opening slot and then her first big tour. Plus, it’s from the same creator as Gilmore Girls so it’s a no brainer.

3. What is the Instagram account you love seeing new posts from? (Bonus points if you link to a post from said account.)

Archie: @animalsdoingthings is exactly what it sounds like. Choice animal videos from the far reaches of the internet. Request to follow, pull up a seat, go down the rabbit hole. Pardon the pun.

View this post on Instagram

Ready set go (Via: @pritix3)

A post shared by Animals Doing Things (@animalsdoingthings) on

4. What was the first album you ever bought with your own money?

Jon: The first record I ever bought was Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill. It was an onslaught of hits and I listened to it incessantly. At 12 years old, I had never heard lyrics like that before. Holed up in my room in rural Cape Breton with my Discman and JLP - I thought I was quite punk.  

5. If you were a meme, what meme would you be?

We’re a dog band.

6. Tell us about the best live show you’ve ever been to.

Matt: I’d have to say seeing Andy Irvine at the Seanchai in 2019. The setting was intimate and Irvine was on fire. It was surreal to watch my musical hero tell stories and perform such intricate songs with ease. There were a few moments when he would attempt a song and stop midway through, telling the audience that he hasn’t played this song in a while so be patient with him - it was incredibly charming, honest and inspirational.

7. How would you describe your music/sound in a sentence?

Travis: A buddy of ours once described us as sounding like the Rankin Family if they were produced by Brian Eno. Such a flattering depiction. Shouts to Alex at Ametora Supply in Lunenburg!

8. What’s the best part of being in a band/being a musician?

Matt: The best part of being in a band is when we have a breakthrough on a song. We tirelessly mull over ideas either in our studio or in our heads trying to perfect them. There’s no better feeling than when it finally clicks.

9. Screenshot your Spotify heavy rotation—or tell us a couple of albums/artists you can’t stop listening to.

Travis: We recently toured Western Canada for the first time and had a few 12-plus hour treks through the prairies. We always have music on the go, so I created a playlist of new releases we’ve been listening to. Tame Impala is always a van staple, but records from Bonny Light Horseman, Soccer Mommy, Caribou and a live Richard Thompson are getting some serious spins.


Fill in the blank: if you weren’t making music, you’d be _____________.

Thinking about making music.

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Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Buffy Sainte-Marie to play Halifax August 26

Catch the iconic singer-songwriter at Casino Nova Scotia.

Posted By on Tue, Feb 25, 2020 at 4:23 PM

Sainte-Marie will be one of the summer's hottest tickets. - TREVOR BRADY PHOTO
  • Sainte-Marie will be one of the summer's hottest tickets.
  • Trevor Brady photo
Without her there'd be no Jeremy Dutcher. Heck, there'd be no Joni Mitchell. Yep, long before the "Indigenous renaissance" that saw Dutcher win a JUNO and the Snotty Nose Rez Kids revolutionize Canadian hip hop, there was Buffy Sainte-Marie, pioneering the ’60s singer-songwriter genre with a catalogue of tunes as thematically weighty as they are sonically light. Now, as the icon finally reaches new levels of recognition (Pitchfork gave her 1969 breakthrough album Illuminations a long-overdue nine out of 10 review earlier this month), she's hitting Casino Nova Scotia's Schooner Room to baptize our ears and soothe our hearts.

With 19 new songs "about the environment, alternative conflict resolution, Indigenous realities, greed and racketeering," as a press release promises, the August 26 show will light a fire in your belly, too. Tickets are on sale as of Feb 28, starting at $64.99 plus fees. Get them at
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Monday, February 10, 2020

Alessia Cara to play Halifax Jazz Fest on July 9

Toronto's biggest musical export since Drake headlines the waterfront main stage.

Posted By on Mon, Feb 10, 2020 at 4:10 PM

NBD but Alessia Cara is label mates with the likes of Justin Bieber, BTS and Mariah Carey. - DEFJAM.COM SCREENSHOT
  • NBD but Alessia Cara is label mates with the likes of Justin Bieber, BTS and Mariah Carey.
  • screenshot
From recording acoustic covers in her basement to hitting the stage at Saturday Night Live to winning a Grammy for best new artist in 2018, it's safe to say Alessia Cara has spent her teen years in an ascent, a come-up, rising into popular conscious off the back of her totally-perfect (I will not entertain any detractors) coming-of-age opus The Pains of Growing the same way you hoped to raise to the middle of your high school's social order.  Not since Drake has Toronto had such a mainstream-acknowledged, R&B-tinged export. She's brought new life to your playlists and eardrums.

Now, she's bringing new life to your summer, too: Halifax Jazz Festival has announced its first run of names for the 2020 fest, which runs July 7 to 12.  Cara shares the announcement with the likes of indie darling Andy Shauf and drumming legend Larnell Lewis. Cara will be playing the waterfront main stage July 9 and advance tickets are on sale now for $58.40
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Friday, January 31, 2020

Flex through this Super Bowl weekend with these Sure Things

Posted By on Fri, Jan 31, 2020 at 2:53 PM

This Super Bowl weekend is a touchdown, with double-duty events aplenty like a dance night that doubles as a cultural enrichment, a beer bar that's also a pinballer's paradise and art shows that double as activism. Get ready to get inspired.

  • Submitted photo

FIN Fridays: Perfume War
The film fest has some off-season fun with these pop-up screenings, held the last Friday of each month at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia. First up? This documentary that shows how two friends worked towards world peace with an unlikely weapon: perfume oils. more deets

Best of Constellate 2019

Inspired by the likes of The Moth in New York, the duo behind Constellate began the live storytelling night because they love it, but also "we're both community-oriented people," as organizer Greg Puncher told The Coast last summer. Here, a greatest hits of sorts sees group members sharing live, true tales from recent events at The Bus Stop Theatre—which, FYI, received conditional funding from Council this week, meaning the vital north end arts hub is making serious headway in saving its space. Read more in this week's Coast. more deets

  • Alejandro Rizzo Nervo artwork

The Sea Is In Her Blood
Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
It's your last chance to see the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic's exhibit exploring the sea-sprayed stories of 17 women whose lives have been shaped by the ocean. more deets

Memorial: Work By Venezuelan Diaspora Artists
Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday

Seven emerging Venezuelan diaspora artists are bringing their art to Halifax. Their pieces touch on themes of loss and memory as a result of being displaced from their birthplace. The exhibition, curated by Camila Salcedo, features photography, video and virtual reality—among other mediums—to unpack topics like family lineage and history or news and grandparents. Read more about the show before you see it at The Khyber. more deets

Big Cats & A Crocodile
Thursday, Friday, Saturday

With this body of work, artist Natasha Verbeke pulls apart her complicated relationship with Baroque-era painter Peter Paul Rubens. Movement and composition are explored through layers of washes and mark-making in these large scale oil paintings. See them at the Anna Leonowens Gallery. more deets

Plate Portraits
Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
An exhibit by artist Emily Lawrence explores food's connection to memory. Based on interviews with people living with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, Lawrence re-constructed memorable foods and photographed them "as a means of memory retrieval." Read more from our chat with Lawrence and see the works at Halifax Central Library's fifth-floor Sunroom. more deets

  • Submitted photo

Flava feat. DJ Tranzishen and DJ 5Rivers

Get spicy and sweaty as two of the hottest up-and-coming Halifax DJs and BFFs—that’s DJ 5RIVERS and DJ Tranzishen—mix a steady stream of Reggae, hip hop, dancehall, Punjabi, R&B and Afrobeats at Art Bar. more deets

Kristen Martell

Kristen Martell's sunshine-y, optimistic songs are like Vitamin D to your ears. Read more about the Sarah Harmer-influenced singer-songwriter here—and see her live at The Carleton, too. more deets

MichaelMichael w/Lvbor Cvmp, Tawnie Lucas, High October, Rootabagga
Tawnie Lucas, pictured, delivers a Lana Del Ray affectation over slick-as-syrup EDM, making the singer-songwriter's music perfect for your party playlist and your morning-after tunes, too. more deets
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Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Sloan comes back home with Navy Blues tour

The legendary record will be performed front-to-back.

Posted By on Wed, Jan 29, 2020 at 4:55 PM

Chris, Andrew, Patrick and Jay. - LISA MARK
  • Chris, Andrew, Patrick and Jay.
When Sloan dropped Navy Blues in 1998, it was after a few tumultuous years of attempted solo side projects and the hard work of cracking the U.S. market. Perhaps the reason why people went so nuts for the record was because it was proof their favourite band had weathered the storm—and still had its same sense of irreverent rock 'n' roll in a post–One Chord To Another world.

Or perhaps the band that made everyone believe we were the Seattle of the North needed no redemption arc. Perhaps the fact that the entire album slaps, even today, is enough.

Regardless of which camp you fall in, Sloan fans will be psyched to hear the four-piece is coming to Halifax to play the record in its entirety followed by a set of classic hits on May 2 at 9pm at The Marquee Ballroom. Tickets go on sale Jan 31 at for $38.49, so warm up that credit card.

In the meantime, fuel your excitement/nostalgia with this definitive ranking of all Sloan songs, from worst to best—and the time Halifax voted Sloan's turmoil—"from them breaking up to them not breaking up, with lots of bitterness about the band moving to Toronto"—the worst thing in the live music scene in 1998 in that year's Best of Halifax Readers' Choice Awards.
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Monday, January 27, 2020

The Black Keys are coming to Halifax

The rock royalty continues its reign as it hits Halifax May 5.

Posted By on Mon, Jan 27, 2020 at 11:40 AM

After dropping an album that proved the duo still has lots to say—and still knows how cut a deep groove—in 2019's Let's Rock, the Black Keys are coming to Halifax. Hitting the Scotiabank Centre May 5 at 7:30pm, the six-time-Grammy-winning blues rock duo will share the stage with The Sheepdogs and Early James, kicking off the Canadian leg of its tour. Tickets go on sale Jan 31 and will be available at and but price is TBA as of yet. 
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Thursday, January 23, 2020

Ten questions with Braden Lam

The Driftwood People's front person dishes about Stanning Tim Baker and his NSYNC phase.

Posted By on Thu, Jan 23, 2020 at 3:37 PM

Braden Lam, pictured in the white shirt with his band Driftwood People, has been selling out shows since late 2018. His brand of positive indie folk is a favourite with other students, but he's working to make sure he and his band don't remain a campus band. - SUBMITTED
  • Braden Lam, pictured in the white shirt with his band Driftwood People, has been selling out shows since late 2018. His brand of positive indie folk is a favourite with other students, but he's working to make sure he and his band don't remain a campus band.
  • Submitted
He's been, it feels, a star poised to shoot from the start: Selling out spaces like The Carleton to fellow students to see their favourite indie-folkster sing about love and growing up. Winning prizes like the Best of Halifax Readers' Choice Award for Best New Band and the SOCAN Award For Young Canadian Songwriters. Earning (and ultimately outgrowing) comparisons to a young Justin Bieber for his clean-cut look and sound. 

Yep, for Braden Lam and his band Driftwood People, success has proven to not be a question but an assertion. "It’s easy to be a student band and keep playing in the bubble of campus but we’ve done a good job of pulling students off-campus and pulling other people into our fanbase," he told The Coast when notified of his Best of Halifax win last November.

Lam and the Driftwood People have kept busy, touring and working on new tracks while they waited for you to notice them. But now, the band is back in Halifax—ready to hit the stage Friday Jan 24 at The Seahorse Tavern, opening for The Town Heroes. Before he does, though, Lam takes five to fill in an updated version of The Coast's questionnaire:

1 What is the most non-negotiable part of your pre-show routine?
We share a bag of goldfish. Non-negotiable. Well, actually, Nick eats most of the bag and the rest of us get a couple. Legend has it that if one of us doesn’t eat any goldfish pre-show, then something will go wrong on stage (broken string, out of tune bass, cables unplugged). I don’t believe it, but the majority are convinced.

2Tell us about a TV show or movie you’re totally obsessed with right now?
I’m currently binging Suits on Netflix. I never thought a show about lawyers could be so interesting, but all of the tension and witty-ness of the storyline make it SO good.

3 What is the best Instagram account you follow?
My friend @emmett_sparling from Vancouver does amazing travel photography all around the world. I’ve got mad respect for him being completely self-taught.

  4 What was the first album you ever bought with your own money?
Backstreet Boys' Millennium (1999) on cassette. Probably got it at the thrift store in my hometown called Chances Are. I distinctly remember playing this album and some NSYNC in my bedroom as a kid—I’m only 22 years old now, so I grew up with a lot of the early 2000s music. I wouldn’t say it was very formative for my own music though, haha.

5 If you were a meme, what meme would you be?

6 Tell us about the best live show you’ve ever been to.
Front-row seeing Tim Baker play at the 2019 ECMAs in Charlottetown. This was the first time a performance actually brought me to tears. I’ve seen Tim play in Hey Rosetta! before as they were such a big influence for me in high school. But something about Tim’s new songs and the timing of when the album came into my life, it was a really overwhelming moment for me in a really special way.

7 How would you describe your music/sound in a sentence?
I’m driving in a car with the windows down as the rolling fog brings a refreshing sense of peace mixed with the smell of the ocean.

8 What’s the best part of being in a band/being a musician?
When folks come to our shows and feel like they can be themselves, catch up with friends, and have a good time. It’s definitely a huge privilege to be able to facilitate events that bring community together. Witnessing that happen and knowing you created a memorable experience is the best part.

9 Screenshot your Spotify heavy rotation—or tell us a couple of albums/artists you can’t stop listening to.
I Need to Start a Garden - Haley Heynderickx

Stranger in the Alps - Phoebe Bridgers

Earthtones - Bahamas

Forever Overhead - Tim Baker

Heard it in a Past Life - Maggie Rogers

10 Fill in the blank: if you weren’t making music, you’d be _____________.
Running a cute coffee shop that doubles as a bar and music venue at night in downtown Halifax.
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Monday, January 13, 2020

ZZ Top announces Halifax show May 20

See the Rock & Roll Hall of Famer alongside Cheap Trick at the Scotiabank Centre.

Posted By on Mon, Jan 13, 2020 at 6:15 PM

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It calls itself "the little ol' band from Texas," but ZZ Top has gone on to prove it's an act with legs (which, naturally, knows how to use them), outlasting many of its glam-rock peers and riding a red-hot rod into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Now, it's bringing hits like "Sharp Dressed Man" and "La Grange" to the on Scotiabank Centre on May 20, bringing Cheap Trick along for the trip. Tickets go on sale Friday, Jan 17 and are $66 to $111, including taxes and fees.  
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In Print This Week

Vol 28, No 1
July 9, 2020

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