Sunday 31 May 2009

Drive, Play, Repeat.

Poster by Hlg

There's a long, winding road ahead of us that'll take us to parts south, then west, then north, then east. It's all starts at IVI in Frankfurt tomorrow and continues on along these lines:

02 Jun @ Villa Merkel - Esslingen, DE
03 Jun @ Enosteria - Brescia, IT
04 Jun @ Burrida - Genova, IT
06 Jun @ Sonic - Lyon, FR
08 Jun @ Les Instants Chavirés - Paris, FR
09 Jun @ KAW - Leverkusen, DE
10 Jun @ DBs - Utrecht, NL
11 Jun @ TAC - Eindhoven, NL
12 Jun @ Markthalle - Hamburg, DE
13 Jun @ Schokoladen - Berlin, DE
16 Jun @ XT3 - Prague, CZ
17 Jun @ Klub Re - Krakow, PL
18 Jun @ Pod Minoga - Poznan, PL
19 Jun @ UHF - Warsaw, PL
20 Jun @ Club Ucho - Gdynia, PL
21 Jun @ Alter Ego - Szczecin, PL

If I don't pass you on this road, perhaps our paths will cross one day soon. (Did I just mix metaphors?)

Tuesday 26 May 2009

Some Days w/ A Few Bakers

So we had some visitors visiting with us this weekend - I guess that's what they do. It was a very relaxed few days filled with Aidan's parents - Tom and Anne, good food, drink, a few long walks, and a couple sites.

Having visitors gave us an excuse to approach some places we've procrastinated on seeing like the Brandenburg Gate and Reichstag.

Our long walk through Treptow Park brought us to this monumental shrine to Berlin's Soviet past.

Thanks for visiting! It was a swell, über-long weekend.

Tuesday 19 May 2009

Basteln, in a Brigade

So I've inadvertently helped start a craft collective here in Berlin. Long story short, I was looking for someone(s) to maybe, possibly help put together a screening for 'Handmade Nation' because it's screening everywhere I'm not - including in Toronto by my dear City of Crafters. I found an amazing little sewing studio called Linkle just a few blocks from my apartment (my serious lack of German skillz kept me from going in for months), but now I had something to talk about so I mustered the up the courage and sent an email. -yep.

Anyway, so Linda of Linkle was totally into screening H.N. and she even thought she could others on board and it could be this great craft party! I was stoked, she was stoked, but anyone willing to help with funds (craft star docs come at a price) or, even enthusiasm was shortcoming.

The idea of the event was still kinda great and there were other craft groups and shops kinda willing to be involved and a 'craft community' is kind of non-existent here so we thought we'd go ahead and do it and maybe this would be a dawn of a new co-operative crafty era. Also, we gave this fledgling collective a name: Bastel Brigade.

The craft party will go on and instead of H.N., we'll be screening a Ein Traum in Erdbeerfolie - a documentary about the avant-garde, handmade, and improvised fashion scene in the former East Berlin. The craft party will be clothing themed with the opportunity to remake a piece of clothing you already own, or learn to make something new.

The collective mind for this event included Linkle, City of Craft, Stitchalicious, La Bastellerie, Eiszeit Kino, and Modular. I hope it doesn't rain.

Monday 11 May 2009


In keeping with the theme of boats this week, Aidan and I got the chance to play on a very special one last night. Based in Rostock, Germany, the M.S. Stubnitz spends most of the year docked in various European harbours. Currently stationed in its home port, we drove up with our new Aussie friends, Grey Daturas to play to a few locals, but mostly the boat's crew. Attendance aside - we did know what to expect - the time spent on board was great and I've never slept in a ship's cabin before, so that was fun.


Friday 8 May 2009

I Kinda Wanna Live on a Houseboat

I get to see a lot of cities, but mostly it's the immediate surrounding of a club and only for a couple hours. Since first visiting Amsterdam a couple years ago, I've been yearning to spend a little more time in town. There HAD to be more to the city than hot-boxed coffee shops and a million tourists.

After 2.5 days there, I can verify that there really is no short supply of either, but it's also a really beautiful city full of good food, great shows - and great friends that could get us into shows. We planned our trip around the Woven Hand and Andrew Bird shows at Paradiso - one of the lovelier concert halls I've entered on the continent. Roger swung it for us to get on Woven Hand's guestlist, but Andrew Bird was sold solid and it didn't look hopeful. That is(!), until we got a call a few hours before the show and by the most amazing fluke 2 tickets were available. Roger, you made my week! (The last time A.B. swung through Toronto I had a terrible flu...)

By further fluke (or, earlier fluke if you're able to follow my chronology), once the Woven Hand show let out, the Paradiso's smaller venue was hosting MEN - remember JD Samson? - and I had some pent up dance energy that needed release.

I was pretty curious to check out the cat refuge on the water, but it was closed to the public the day we went to investigate. I gotta say, I was a little relieved -- it seemed a little bit small and lacking in outdoor space (or even just windows). I have a small dream of having a cat sanctuary some day when I can afford a nice tract of land (or, rooftop) made ideal for feline frolic. I've developed this idea pretty far in my head, but I'll spare you of it for now.

We were a little concerned with blowing too much dough so we did as much free, on foot, exploration as possible in the windy and cold drizzle.

And yes, the idea of dropping anchor on a canal was very enticing.

& here's a pretty great statue of Spinoza -- the sometimes poster child for Dutch tolerance.