Beau’s 10th annual Oktoberfestin Vankleek Hill, Ontario, got off to a rocky start as a pair of tornadoes ripped through the Ottawa and Gatineau region, bringing torrential down pours with them. While many were turned away and many of us on a buses were sent home before ever getting off, those who were already on site or got there on their own were treated to some great tunes and delicious suds.
Music was cancelled on the main stage but the show did go on at the Black Forest Stage where the punks were a rocking once the whether cleared up. Our photographer Aidan Thatcher was there for Cancer Bats, The Flatliners, K-Man and the 45s, and it was all hosted by the lovable Remi Royale.
Big shoutout to Beau’s staff and volunteers for all their hard work Friday in such a chaotic situation.
Over the past few years, Partner has taken the Canadian music scene by storm. Their sound is bold and unwavering, meeting at the unsuspecting intersection of classic rock riffs and 90’s grunge. Consisting of BFF’s Lucy Niles and Josée Caron, Partner is breaking down barriers and paving their own path. One show after the other, they satisfy exuberant and voracious crowds with power moves, electrifying riffs, and unimaginably catchy hooks that reel you in forever. Coming off the release of their brand new record In Search of Lost Time (You’ve Changed Records), I had a great chat with Lucy and Josée which you can read below.
Partner is playing Beau’s Oktoberfest in Van Kleek Hill this Saturday, be sure to catch their high-energy set at 4:30 pm on the Main Stage. More info here.
Interview with Partner
You’re playing Beau’s Oktoberfest this weekend? Have you ever been to an Oktoberfest before?
Lucy: We’ve never been to one before, but apparently it’s a really fun time with lots of schnitzel. Yeah, I mean hopefully we’re around there long enough to check some cool stuff out. I’d love to catch the Planet Smashers for nostalgia purposes. Also, our friends Julie and the Wrong Guys. Them for sure, and we’ll get stoked the day-of and hopefully catch more.
Your new album In Search of Lost Time was recently featured on Pitchfork. Do you take album reviews to heart?
Lucy: We usually only take them seriously if they’re favourable. Because if they’re not, then we’re like “Welp, some people have a bad sense of humour.” Sometimes we’re sad when people don’t get it, but then we get over it.
Josée: Most people have been super, super nice.
Lucy: Some people say the skits aren’t funny, but that’s the most negative thing they say. They just don’t get it!
You’re live show is full of energy, and people seem to go nuts when they see you play. How much do you feed off of that?
Lucy: It feels great. We love attention. It’s feels so good when that many people are paying attention. We feel very powerful. It’s just so fun, everyone’s partying together. We get into crowd and intermingle with everyone.
Do you have any go-to moves on stage?
Lucy: Josée has a little step that she gets on. Sometimes I’ll do the splits by accident. I have a new one where I just spin around in circles a bunch. They usually come naturally and then we just keep using them, and keep them in our toolbox.
I saw you had some family come to the SappyFest show. Do your folks like coming to see you play?
Lucy: I think Josée’s parents have seen us like six times this year. My parents live in Labrador so they don’t see us as much, but they all go to every show whenever they can. They’re pretty much super-stoked, always.
You’re based in Windsor at the moment. How much time have you spent there?
Lucy: We’ve been here for about a year. There’s a few cool things here, like the guy that rides backwards on his bike. There are a lot of sights to see for sure. There’s a gay bar that I recently went to with a secret patio.
Josée: Detroit. It’s right there.
Lucy: Oh yeah, that too. And there’s a billion antique stores. There are a lot of Neverending Story-type antique stores that probably have some magic talismans inside them, you know?
Josée: When we’re rich we’re going to move to the bigger city.
Lucy: Yeah, like even a closet costs $800 in Toronto, it’s crazy! I mean, we probably would live in a closet if we had that much money, but you know.
You have a connection to Sackville, NB, and SappyFest. Do you have any specific memories of the festival?
Lucy: There’s always like 100 things going on at once. You’re never going to get to experience everything, you just have to go with the flow. Multiple cool shows, and multiple cool groups of people doing different things. Just go where the wind takes you, that’s the best advice. As for specific memories, I don’t know, we have so many.
Josée: There was that year you broke your glasses…
Lucy: Oh yeah, that was a horrible memory of Sappy. I went crowdsurfing and broke my glasses. I couldn’t see, but it was a miracle because people helped me out and guided me around because I couldn’t see. We’ve been to every Sappy since Sappy 5, and it’s just consistently awesome. But yeah, it’s a such a neat vibe being there and that’s why people keep coming back. Those who have been there know what I’m talking about.
What does it feel like to get the new songs out into the world? They must have been brewing for a long time.
Josée: It’s great to have them all out now, and it’s kind of a weight off and on our shoulders. Now we can move on, a lot of these songs are so old.
Lucy: For us, it feels like we’ve beaten these songs to death in our minds!
Josée: It really does kind of feel like we’re presenting something that was written three years in the past, so it’s exciting to move forward. We didn’t want to sit on the songs that long, but it really was just how long it took to make the thing. Once The Ellen Page and Hot Knives came out as singles, we had those for a while but they weren’t exactly what we wanted for the whole album so we had to gather our resources, apply for grants, figure out a label, recording, all that. And since we didn’t have a whole lot of time for pre-production, lots of work happened after the studio, which when mixed with touring, was a lot of logistical stuff to consider.
What’s your next step as a band?
Josée: Just keep writing!
Lucy: Yeah, just gotta keep writing. We have a couple new tunes for our next album already. Lot’s of touring too, we have some good shit lined up for the fall and new year. We’ve playing quite a few shows in the States, too, because the mid-west is pretty close to where we are. And New England, too.
Do you find touring in the US different? Particularly given the political climate?
Lucy: I mean, it does feel different, but people are always super cool punks just trying to have a good time. They just have a shittier go because they don’t have stuff like health care available, and it’s a more precarious existence. But yeah, everywhere you go it’s the same thing, people helping other people put on shows and have fun with it. We’ve stayed with awesome people everywhere we’ve been, so I guess we’re not so different after all.
I think I saw Lucy walk by and cheer at Sappy Karaoke while my girlfriend was belting out Shania Twain. Are you big fans?
Lucy: I don’t remember the karaoke that well, but we love Shania. I think she was the first non-gay person that we were obsessed with, as children and then also later as adults together. She’s #1.
Beau’s Oktoberfest kicks off this weekend, Sept. 22-23, in Vankleek Hill, just under one hour outside of Ottawa. It is an epic two day celebration of craft beer, local food and of course music.
We have been going for years now and having the best time year after year. Last year members of Showbox entered the team challenge and came out victorious. We will be defending our title this year if you happen to be around early Saturday morning.
More importantly, we figured that this year you should get to know the bands that will tickle your ear drums while we suggest beer pairings, suds, that will also tickle your taste buds. Here are some of our recommended pairings:
Flight Distance with Three Knocks
Friday – 7:00 PM on the Black Forest Stage
Flight Distance seem like the odd band out as the only hip-hop act playing the festival. This makes them a rare breed in the midst of all the rock and roll, which makes pairing the trio with Three Knocks, a special, rare version of a German-style altbier perfect. I know they won’t be intimidated at all and will carry the flag for Ottawa hip-hop with pride when they hit the stage. So while they spits slick bars you should hit the bar yourself and get wild and freaky with Three Knocks.
NOBRO with Spiced Principle
Friday – 8:20 PM on the Black Forest Stage
My favourite song by these rockers is “Call The Doctor.” Spiced Principle is a complex and lively beer which features a mortar and pestle on the label, tools traditionally used in pharmacies to crush various ingredients to fill your prescription after your visit to the doctor. So take a trip to the Black Forest Stage to come rock out to NOBRO and sip on some Spiced Principle to cure what ales you.
John K Samsom and the Winter Wheat with Maple Rush Porter
Friday – 8:45PM on the Main Stage
Sure pairing the Winter Wheat with a wheat beer would make a lot of sense here, but John K Samson, formerly of The Weakerthans and Propaghandi, is Canadiana and Canadian-indie music at its core. And what is more Canadian than maple coffee beer? Nothing. So Friday night when the sun goes down and you’re ready to be swooned by the lovely musical stylings of John K, order yourself a Maple Rush Porter and toast this living legend of Canadian music.
Dead Tired with Vambrace
Friday – 9:15 PM on the Black Forest Stage
A Vambrace is a piece of armour, most specifically a piece that protects the arm. Now I don’t know how much a pilsner will protect you, but you certainly might need some armour to survive the onslaught from this hardcore band lead by former Alexisonfire frontman George Petit. I do however know that this crisp, refreshing and easy drinking beer won the 2016 Beau’s Oktoberfest homebrew contest and will make for a great late night drink while you headbang to Dead Tired.
Jon Creeden and the Flying Hellfish with Lug Tread
Saturday – 3:45 PM on the Black Forest Stage
The Lug Tread is Beau’s flagship beer, tried tested and true. This makes it the ideal pairing for Jon Creeden and the Flying Hellfish as they are an Ottawa Showbox favourite who are always refreshing, never disappoints and great at anytime of the day, just like Lug Tread. So make sure to be there early enough on Saturday to enjoy this pairing under the hot afternoon sun.
Partner with Farm Table: Hopfenlager
Saturday – 4:30 PM on the Main Stage
The Hopfenlager is taking something common, like a crisp and refreshing lager, and spicing it up with herbal flavours and aromas. Partner have taken rock and given it their own original fun take, while breaking down barriers and also spicing it up with some herbal aromas from time to time (check out their song “Everybody Knows You’re High”). So try a new beer while enjoying a new twist on an old classic.
Julie and the Wrong Guys with Jänis
Saturday – 5:30 PM on the Main Stage
First off a juniper beer named Jänis just has to be paired with Julie given that I’m a sucker for alliterations. Julie is of course Julie Doiron, an award-winning Canadian singer-songwriter from the Maritimes, who along with her band will continue to rock the main stage following Partner. The music will make you bob your head and even hop up and down, possibly like the rabbit on Jänis’s label.
The Planet Smashers with Parliament of Trees
Saturday – 6:45 PM on the Main Stage
Parliament of Trees’ label has a space ship on it and the beer has a hint of campfire in every sip. The Planet Smashers are one of Canada’s greatest and longest standing ska bands around. Their super fun approach to ska will make you want to dance and sing, the perfect activities for around a camp fire with friends.
The Creeps with Sergeant Stripes
Saturday – 7:50 PM on the Black Forest Stage
This export stout is dark as the night and deep in flavour. It promises to keep you warm while the ghastly punk rock stylings of The Creeps give you shivers under the moonlight. This beer and band pairing might just have you howling at the moon as you cap off your Oktoberfest 2017.
For more information on the beers themselves, click here.
We hope everyone attending has a wonderful, safe and responsible time at Beau’s Oktoberfest. And for anyone that doesn’t have a ticket yet, I believe some are still available here.
We think we have finally recovered from another amazing two days out in Vankleek Hill for this year’s Beau’s Oktoberfest. This was my fourth year attending Oktoberfest and once again it did not disappoint. So much happens during these jam-packed two days. Here are the highlights from this year:
Six eighths of The Empty Steins, your Beau’s Oktoberfest Team Challenge Champions.
Competing in the team challenge
Every year I go watch the team challenge and every year I write about how much fun it looks and how cool it is to see so many people competing while raising money for charity. In years past, this joy was saved for organizations and businesses that signed up well ahead of time. This year, for the first time, they opened the team challenge up to the public. Obviously I jumped all over this and entered a team. And when the dust settled from the malt sack race, beer soaked sponge slingshots and tug of war, and after the total donations were counted, our team – The Empty Steins – were victorious. Big shout out to the other teams, the organizers and everyone who cheered loudly.
The Black Forest Stage
The Black Forest Stage made it’s debut last year and was back in fine form this year. The stage mostly features punk and garage rock and is hosted by Antique Skate, House of TARG, Vans, Pouzza Fest, and Ottawa Explosion. Once again this year it was the place to be with an absolutely killer line up featuring the likes of Steve Adamyk Bank, Solids, Lost Love, Camp Radio, Audio Visceral, Pale Lips, Wasted Potential, Brutal Youth and more. The stage also hosted an early morning Saturday Folkin’ Wake Up with some acoustic stuff to start you off slow. The highlights from this stage have to be Waste Potential bring up up Jordy Bell from The Creeps to play “Wait a Minute” and then Dave Williams from Crusades to play a track. Pretty awesome seeing the local bands getting that kind of respect. Also worth noting was the bloody blast that was Brutal Youth’s performance. I simply don’t know of many bands that have that much energy live.
Members of Antiques Skateboarding crew ripping it up on the halfpipe. Photo: Eric Scharf
In the shadow of the Black Forest Stage lies a halfpipe where many skateboarders entertain all weekend. You can find them hanging out and riding rather casually most of the time, but at a few very specific moments they let it all hang out. Whether it is during their “Gladiator” style combat where you must stay on your board while trying to remove others from theirs or when they pushed each other to the limits during a sort of best trick competition, the skaters are a sight to be seen. One thing I love about it is when people see something they like they are encouraged to throw beer tokens into the halfpipe for the skaters, I even saw some people throwing in a few bills. A photo album with some of the skateboarding I took in will follow soon.
54-40 showing that they still have it as they play on the main stage at Beau’s Oktoberfest 2016. Photo: Eric Scharf
The Main Stage Headliners
Between the team challenge, the Black Forest Stage and the Craft Haus, I didn’t have much time to check out the main stage this year. However I did watch the headliners both nights, and even though both have hyphens in their names, I was impressed for very different reasons. On the Friday it was a trip down memory lane to watch 54-40. Leading up to the show I spoke with friends about how I knew I liked 54-40, but couldn’t really think of that many of their songs. Once the band started playing I found myself singing along to every song except the new ones and having a great time. On Saturday night it was time for Beau’s collaborator K-Os to wow the stage. He played his hits and was great with the crowd, but my favourite part was when he went off freestyling, especially when he took a shot at Drake. From Canadian alt rock one night to Canadian hip-hop the next, the headliners closed out each night in style.
Remi Royale entertaining the crowd between set at the Black Forest stage at Beau’s Oktoberfest 2016. Photo: Eric Scharf
Remi Royale and the mystery of his stolen belt
This is not so much a highlight but more of an important event. Ottawa’s beloved punk rock crooner Remi Royale had his infamous hot dog championship belt stolen from the side of the Black Forest Stage. Royale was providing MC duties and singing a few songs in between bands, just doing what he does. Unfortunately some miscreant took off with his beloved belt, the item that harnesses all his special powers. If anyone knows anything that could help get the belt back, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and I am sure we can hook you up with a pretty sweet reward.
Brutal Youth were bloody brilliant as they closed out the Black Forest stage at Beau’s Oktoberfest 2016. Photo: Eric Scharf
The Food Selection and Quality
Every year I am amazed at the selection and quality of the food vendors we have to choose from on the festival grounds. There are so many inventive options, like chicken and waffles in a cone, bugger balls stuffed with smoked bacon and cheese, perogies, many kinds of schnitzel and so much more. My food highlight was Pure Kitchen’s tempeh Bavarian meatballs with roasted onion gravy served with potato hash topped with leeks, sauerkraut, pickled beets and apple sauce. Oh man am I ever hungry now.
The selection at the Craft Haus, night one wasn’t even done and stuff was sold out.
The Craft Haus
The Craft Haus is the very special tent beside the main stage where one can taste a plethora of delicious beers from many breweries. Beau’s special releases at Oktoberfest are great, Life on Juniper is one of the tastiest beers I have ever tried, and available in the other beer tents, but there is just something so special about the choices and different flavour and finishes within the Craft Haus. One of the most interesting beers was Forked River Brewing Company’s Wicked Wench which is a barrel aged sour stout. Order this beer if you ever really want to confuse your pallet. I could go on and one about all the really great beers I sampled in the Craft Haus, like Stack Brewing’s Stack ’72 an imperial IPA or Block 3 Brewing Co.’s The Epic, a chardonnay brett barrel aged saison, but instead of reading about it, just make sure not to miss out next year.
I encourage everyone, every year, to camp. I commend Beau’s for coordinating shuttle services in hopes of eliminating anyone’s urge to drink and drive, but I would much rather camp over night than have to cram into a yellow school bus with no washrooms all the way back to town. Not only do you not have to suffer through that bus ride, the party keeps on going as this year’s camping featured late night movies (Beerfest and Strange Brew), popcorn and canteen open early and late. Camping is also a great way to meet people as it is a little less noisy and rambunctious as one the festival grounds. Now if only they could find a way to have the campground licensed…
Staff and volunbeers
I think I mention this every year, but everyone I interact with, from Beau’s staff members to volunbeers, are so very nice and excited to be there. Whether it was coordinating media passes, participation in the team challenge, volunbeers serving me a drink or the ones walking around answering questions, everyone was just so positive and play an integral role in making Beau’s Oktoberfest so wunderbar.
Festival goers honing their flip cup skills at Beau’s Oktoberfest 2016. Photo: Eric Scharf
The Oktoberfest crowd
One thing that really impresses me is the behaviour of all those in attendance. When you consider that you have thousand of people displacing themselves in order to consume alcohol, I didn’t witness a single fight or any sort of misbehaviour. It is very refreshing to attend an event of this nature and see so many people having a great time and not experiencing any real problems.
With autumn quickly rushing in, that can only mean one thing. Yes, it’s almost time for Beau’s Oktoberfest happening this weekend, October 2nd and 3rd. Our friends at Beau’s have really raised the bar this year – the 7th annual fest includes an exciting blend of great music, fun activities, and, of course, delicious craft beer all weekend long. Last year Beau’s Oktoberfest saw more than 19,000 attendees over the two days, and raised $106,000 for local community groups and charities.
Passes are selling out quick, and Saturday general admission are already gone. However, we are GIVING AWAY A PAIR OF WEEKEND PASSES!!! Please note that bus transportation is no longer available. So if you missed the early bird boat, there is still hope.
Live music on Friday night from Yukon Blonde, The Dears, The Pack A.D., and The Elwins
Plus performances by… Tom Green and Canada’s polka king – Walter Ostanek!
A total of 14 Beau’s beers on tap, including 5 brand-new beers
28 local restaurants bringing their best Bavarian and seasonally-inspired cuisine
“Craft Haus” tent with beers from 40+ different local craft breweries
Activities: Keg toss, sausage-eating contest, malt sack races, partner-carrying race, and more
United Way’s Charity Bike Ride from Ottawa – (Bus ride back for rider and bike!)
Members of Barleyment Homebrew competition
Custom, hand-built midway with Beau’s themed games and prizes
Kinderfest: a non-licensed family area with activities and entertainment
Skateboarding demo area
School of Bock tastings and beer education sessions with beer & food experts
Traditional German dancing and entertainment during the day
Shuttle from fairgrounds to Beau’s brewery for free tours and tastings
Joel Plaskett Emergency brought the east coast flair to end the night after The Rural Alberta Advantage had us dancing to their west coast laments at Beau’s Oktoberfest in Vankleek Hill, this weekend.
Day one was excellent even though it started off a little rocky. Arriving half an hour early for the shuttle buses up to Vankleek Hill, it still took over an hour before I was on a bus and on our way. This meant I missed out on local rockers Fresh Hell, well almost everyone missed out on them actually, but it is great that the festival invited local acts.
The Fandemics rocking out at Beau’s Oktoberfest in Vankleek Hill.
Once I accepted missing out on Fresh Hell, everything was on the up and up. I got my complimentary pretzel and beer and wandered over to the Bamberg tent which housed the punk rock, mini ramp and Antique Skateshop booth. Right next to the tent was a massive half-pipe where Vans and Antique skaters rode all weekend long. Pop punks from Toronto, The Fandemics, were the first band I saw. With skateboarding on both sides of them and people posing for Movember photos with sparkly moustaches, they rocked the ever-growing crowd with some catchy originals. The really impressed me by reaching deep and covering The Replacements’ “Kids Don’t Follow,” and Soul Asylum’s “Need Somebody to Shove.”
New Swears being New Swears at Beau’s Oktoberfest in Vankleek Hill.
With the tent filling up as more and more buses arrived it was time for Vankleek Hill to experience the party madness that is Ottawa’s New Swears. Playing their first show after a three-month European tour, the boys took to the stage dressed head to toe in black and sporting long pink wigs. They started by playing a little of “Stir It Up” by Bob Marley and then got down to business playing their love song “Two Darts” and then “Paradise,” the anthem for those who don’t know their limits. The set continued with they played “Rather be Dead” and “Stay Gold” as fans covered other concert-goers in silly string provided by the band. New Swears were having a blast climbing on each other’s shoulders, amps and the mini-ramp, as well as skateboarding, rolling around on the ground and even forming pyramid. It was great to see the band rock out to so many new faces and hopefully forge many new fans.
Just a snapshot of some of the fine skateboarding to be seen at Beau’s Oktoberfest in Vankleek Hill.
With the punk rocking finished it was time for some food before Rural Alberta Advantage. The tastiest food I sampled all weekend was Brockberry Cafe’s incredible spicy chicken balls. They were homemade lightly breaded chicken balls stuff with jalapeño peppers and blue cheese. And the best part was they were $1 each so they made the perfect snack at any time.
The Rural Alberta Advantage rocking the main stage at Beau’s Oktoberfest in Vankleek Hill.
As the temperature dropped, Rural Alberta Advantage took to the stage to several thousands of fans standing to watch them and several more in the tents comfortably sampling all the delicious beers. The three-piece have such a rich full sound, you would think they were five or more on stage. RAA opened with a new song off their brand new album Mended With Gold. “What a prefect night,” said lead singer and guitarist Paul Banwatt. “How many beers have you tried?” Their new songs sound great, but the crowd was super excited to hear their older material. Songs such as “Don’t Haunt This Place,” “Frank, AB,” “The Dethbridge in Lethbridge,” and their closer “Stamp'” really had the people dancing and singing. Their energy on stage showed just how much fun they were having as well and Banwatt confirmed it by saying “This is unbelievable, so cool, thanks Beau’s, never expected to play an Oktoberfest.”
Fans standing on tables to sing along with Joel Plaskett Emergency at Beau’s Oktoberfest in Vankleek Hill.
It was now time for the main event, and a very enthusiastic Alan Neal from CBC had the pleasure of introducing Joel Plaskett. Neal announced that there were nearly 7,000 people in attendance ready to see one of Canada’s finest singer songwriters. He also took a moment to say “to all you campers, you are the most beautiful people.” Plaskett was on fire on this night rocking through his catalogue with his incredible backing band Emergency. Opening with some songs from Three “Through & Through & Through” and “Deny, Deny, Deny” then into “You’re Mine” from Scrappy Happiness. He had us, he had us, he had us, at that point. The theme of the night was bands looking like they were having as much fun as those watching them, and it continued as Plaskett said, “Hope you are enjoying yourselves, because we sure are.” Being that he was playing Oktoberfest, he could not pass up on playing “Park Avenue Sobriety Test,” which felt very appropriate, but then he took it even further and covered “Beer Run.” That all made sense, but what had me trying to think back to how many beers I had because I couldn’t believe what I was hearing, was Joel Plaskett sampling a Lorde song… yup, that happened. And as time ran out on the night, they closed out the set with “Nowhere With You.”
With people scurrying to the busses back to Ottawa, I headed back to the campground. It began to rain, but considering I was now a beautiful person in the eyes of Alan Neal and I found people dancing around a campfire. I embraced the rain and many new friends in the flickering of the late night flames. Day one was a wonderful success.
Funny hat, check. Free Pretzel token, check. Beer tokens, check. Bus ride up to Vankleek Hill for Beau’s Oktoberfest, check. Let the fun begin. With an abundance of delicious beer on tap as far as the eye could see and the Canadian king of polka, Walter Ostanek, delighting us on stage, Oktoberfest was in full swing.
A competitor trying his luck at keg toss.
I grabbed myself a pint and made my way to the keg toss event. The event, which had more rules than I thought, was won with Beau’s Oktoberfest record-breaking 38 foot throw. Afterwards, as the exploring continued, my friends and I found a large group of people holding steins on a stage. Turned out to be a contest to see who could hold a full stein without bending their arm for the longest. We all started picking favourites to win. My friends opted for the more muscular and fit people, I looked for the best form. In the end we were all wrong, but it was fun to watch. We also came across another keg toss, but this time height was now the goal not distance. Later on, I failed to convince my buddy’s girlfriend to let me carry her in the spouse carrying obstacle course race. We could have been contenders! All that to say, there was a lot of fun to be had beyond the delicious drinks, food and music. How about that music… With the smell of suds in the air, and on most patrons breaths, it was time for some local tunes. The Balconies delivered a kick ass set. Lead singer and guitarist Jacquie’s stage presence, a combination of Holy McNarland meets Joan Jett, commands attention. They rocked out with a ton of energy and the crowd that gathered was really into it. I absolutely loved their song, The Slo. Great riffs combined with eerie “woo hoo ooos.”
Young Rival rocking out.
Young Rival where up next. They had a beautiful sound and great jamming tunes. The trio from Hamilton had the crowd swaying side to side and bobbing their heads. I really got into their song Better Things To Do. The highlight of their set for me was their pretty rad cover of The Deadly Snakes‘s ”I Can’t Sleep at Night.” I discovered The Deadly Snakes about a decade ago at Bluesfest with my dad, when the event was still around city hall. I love seeing a band that I’m starting to get into cover a more obscure band I have liked for years.
A little late night skate session.
I was exploring and catching up with friends, and sadly missed out on most of the Juno Award winners’ The Sadies set. What I heard was good as always. Anyone else check them out? What did you think? While I was missing The Sadies, I was checking out some pretty sweet mini-pipe skateboarding going on in the back thanks to Antique Skate Shop.Kathleen Edwards closed out the night. The Ottawa sweetheart was funny, lively and interacting with the crowd as always. Her and her band played an excellent set to cap off a night that full of delicious beer, grub and tunes. I truly enjoyed ”Change the Sheets,” off her new album Voyageur. As the band played the song we were blasted with warm greens and purple lights. Another awesome track she played off her new album, an album that made it to #2 on Canadian Billboard charts and #3 on American Folk Billboard charts, was ”Chameleon/Comedian” which had an absolutely epic finale. I was blown away by the musicianship and power of the ending. Later on in the set as the night drew closer and closer to its conclusion, Kathleen sent us off into the crisp October night with the haunting ”Goodnight California.” After a night of sampling various pallet tickling brews, I must say that my favourite was Dr. Hyde, a 7% Roggenbier which is a Bavarian rye beer. It was very tasty and did not taste as strong as it was, then again I’m a sucker for a rye beer. The most surprisingly tasty beer was Smokin’ Banana Peels. The official description is an intense banana aroma, a classic characteristic of a Weissbier, that has been matched with a bacon-like smokiness of a Rauchbier. Let me tell you I found it quite good, and it triggered my childhood memories of amoxicillin. Yum yum.