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Welcome to 2016, and Happy New Year! Out with the old and in with the new: after 5 years (!!!) on the radio, The Dollar Bin and my follow-on attempt at a show Doing It On The Cheap are no more, but please welcome The Passionate Friar to CKCU’s airwaves. Same host, same timeslot, but a (hopefully) very different show. Sandwiched as it is between talk programming (The Tic Show... err, Wednesday Morning Special Blend, and Hans’ CKCU Literary News) and music programming (Permanent Waves with Erik Stolpmann), the show aims to make that transition over its hour. It will start with a chat, some news, and sometimes interviews on the twin (and generally, but not entirely, exclusive) topics of feminism (and social issues and social justice) and science (the backbone of our civilization, with an emphasis on physics, the most fundamental science) — both of which are the subjects of undergraduate honours degrees that I am working on at the moment (a year and a half to go, ugh). There will be some music between the talk segments at the start, and the show will transition to just music by the end... found music mostly, where I will play music that I did not specifically set out to find, but have wandered across anyway (in that regard, The Dollar Bin lives on). P.S. I’m looking for correspondents on all three topics (feminism, science, and music) going forward, drop me a message if you are interested!

From the show’s new home page (this will be the blog associated with it, that was easy):

A gently curving corridor full of pipes and cables -- a photo of the decommissioned HERA accelerator ring at DESY in Hamburg, Germany

An hour of feminism/social issues, physics/science, and music...
News, reviews, interviews, ideas, engaging audio, and the Oxford comma!

This is a show for everyone who is passionate about more than one thing, and anyone that loves the simple, small joys of forever encountering new ideas, and having new experiences. While specific passions are going to be presented — simply because it is what moves this Friar in the moment, oh and time limitations, let’s not forget that — the intent is to do so in a way that is accessible to all, to get your creative juices flowing, to make your day more varied, and hopefully even provide inspiration for whatever your particular passions might be.

While what is presented here will truly be only the tip of the iceberg for this Friar’s passions, and the passions of those whose voices and works and actions are featured, the topics are sufficiently broad that it will take years to even get started exploring them. Specifically, this show will be focusing on three primary subjects: feminism and social issues, physics and science, and music and more music. Where, along with a foundation in feminist studies, comes the more general topics of social justice, aboriginal issues, issues of migration and human rights, intersectional identities (don’t worry, terms will be explained as we go), LGBTQ+ issues, globalism and neoliberalism, accessibility and disability issues... the list goes on — in short, social issues in general will be covered. And then way over here, we have the so-called natural sciences, which study the natural processes of the world around us and provides the underpinnings needed for the successful development and deployment of technologies, which then forms the functional backbone of our many societies. There will be an emphasis on physics because it is the most foundational of the natural sciences, but not a single field of science does not touch us somehow in our day to day lives: biology, chemistry, Earth sciences (geology, meteorology, ecology, oceanography, etc.), space sciences, and again the list goes on.

Why feminism and physics? Well, the simple answer is that I am in my last year and a half of independent honours degrees in both of those subjects: officially, I’m working on a B.Sc. Honours Physics (Theory Stream) degree, but I have also been collecting all the credits I need for a B.A. Honours Women’s and Gender Studies degree (I should be done that process this year, where I will not be done with physics until 2017, sigh). I came to Carleton as a “mature” student to finally study physics after a career designing and building electronics and software, and doing international project management on technical projects, while raising my children as a mostly single parent (by far, the hardest thing I’ve ever done... they are adults now, which is why I was finally able to go to university for the first time). Decades ago, I had a flash of inspiration/realization that synthesized much of what I read about the nature of the universe. I assumed I was wrong because I was ignorant in some critical way about it, but the more I read, the more it looked like I might be onto something, and the more evidence there was that there was value in the approach I had envisioned. I further assumed that someone else would come up with the same approach, but that apparently didn’t happen either, thus when my offspring were old enough, I quit my (very well paying, waaaah) day job and became a full-time student (mmmm, Kraft Dinner, sure I’ll have another bowl). The summer after my first year I took a course that aligned with several of my other passions: Feminist Disability Studies. I was hooked. Badly hooked. I have always been a social activist, and this wasn’t my grandmother’s feminism: it was new and exciting and inclusive and raw and full of dangerous pitfalls and irreconcilable differences. I took all manner of feminist studies, indigenous studies, language courses, and political science courses, and one day went into the Women’s and Gender Studies Department where they stared at me like I had two heads and announced that I was, randomly, most of the way to a minor in the subject. By taking the remaining courses for the minor and one more core course, all I needed to do was chip away at getting qualifying feminist studies credits in parallel with taking my physics degree (which was taking me longer than I had planned... that stuff is hard!), and I ended up with enough credits for a full major, and then an honours degree. I can assure you that nobody is more surprised than me! Due to university regulations, I need to graduate from my physics program before I can apply to the women’s and gender studies program, but I will just need to sit around with my thumbs up my butt and wait for the end of that semester because I will have all the credits I need already (okay, I won’t be sitting around, I’ll probably be doing physics research, but I won’t need to take courses).

Music? Well, if there is one language that is shared by all people, it is the language of music. Music is also at the core of everything I do (yes, including physics). Over the course of five years of doing The Dollar Bin on CKCU, I have learned much about how to find and present found music. For the most part, the music I played on the show was on CDs I had purchased for $3 or less in “dollar bins” wherever I travelled, and were by artists that I had never heard of before. Every show was the presentation of the outcome of the series of adventures I had listening to these previously unknown-to-me artists. I blissfully ignored genre boundaries and mixed music of all styles and origin and time period to create (what I have been told by others) was a challenging and engaging hour of music. Some of the songs I will be playing will be specific to topics I will cover, but I will continue the strong tradition of bringing intriguing found music to the airwaves (without the limitations I imposed on myself with The Dollar Bin — it’s all fair game now!).

Feedback is always welcome, along with music and topic ideas (especially if I can interview you or you can suggest someone to interview). I am also looking for correspondents (every/anywhere, and every/anywho) to do research, interviews, and produced segments on the topics covered by this show. You can reach me at

Don’t Let A Label Silence You ... a feminist activism project at Carleton University

Photo credits... Top: “In The Body Of A Dragon”, a view of the curving tunnel of the decommissioned HERA superconducting particle accelerator/synchrotron at the Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY) in Hamburg, Germany. Photo by me, 2014. Bottom: “Don’t Let A Label Silence You”, a student group feminist activism project I participated in on ways to destigmatize mental health issues done as part of the Activism, Feminisms & Social Justice (WGST2801) course at Carleton. Photo by me, 2013. As a note, the radio segment done with my classmates as part of that campaign (we took over The Dollar Bin that week to do it) ended up with the, now defunct, CKCU feminist radio show Femme Fatale being created by one of the participants, Lilith (they had never heard of CKCU before then).
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As the last of the series approaches, and since I'm avoiding working on my school work for the time being (I do hope to finish one class' work tonight regardless... I had some rather vexing computer problems earlier that I have at least come to grips with, if not resolved), I thought I would write about the most recent wine tasting as part of the summer-long CKCU fundraiser. This time around, it was Chardonnay (previous tastings, one per month, were Reisling and Gamay). As a reminder (more details are in my previous posts that I have liked to in the last sentence), the tastings are part of a fundraiser for CKCU and are conducted by internationally recognized wine taster, writer, and academic Rod Phillips.

We started with Chardonnay, which he said got a bad rap because... well, it kind of deserved it a couple of decades ago. In particular, many wineries heavily oaked their Chardonnay to add flavour to cheaply made wine and, as such, there was a lot of plonk on the market (ha ha ha ha, I had to link to the Wikipedia article of that name because of the photo and its caption at the top, lol). I kind of grew up during the 80s and early 90s (at least with respect to drinking age) and certainly learned to avoid Chardonnay wines. Honestly, I don't really know plonk from nectar of the gods, but I can certainly tell when I don't enjoy something, and Chardonnay (if you will pardon the pun) left a bad taste in my mouth. Rod was clear that we have come a long way since then and those still making Chardonnay have scaled way back on the over-oaking and have learned to create balanced flavours in their wines, so it's time to consider them again. He said that Chardonnay is a "balanced" grape, that some call "neutral" in flavour (not too acidic, not too sweet, not too fruity, not to... etc.). In specific, he said "chardonnay is a winemaker's dream because it is neutral and shows off the winemaker's skill"... conversely, I guess it kind of shouts out any lack of skill ;). It grows just about everywhere, but in warm climates it gets too mellow when ripe so the winemaker often needs to add tartaric acid to give it a crisper flavour. In cool climates like Ontario, the winemaker sometimes (depending on the year or region) needs to add sugar. He also mentioned Zinfandel wine which ferments to produce a product with too much alcohol, acid, and sugar... so they add water to it to balance it and it has thus earned the wine-industry title of "Jesus Juice" (they can turn H2O to wine, heh). One last factoid I wrote down was that the barrels used for wine cost around $1000 each and that they are good for 3 to 4 years of production. I inquired about Ontario's Forty Creek Distillery and their "Double Barrel Reserve", and he did indicate that used wine barrels are sometimes purchased by distillers because they add interesting flavour to whiskey and other hard liquors.

So, back to the tasting... we started with Peninsula Ridge's "Inox" (2011, Niagara Peninsula), which was completely unoaked (made in stainless steel.. thus the name "Inox", from "inoxidable" which is French for unoxidizable, and is used to describe stainless steel in French). I found it a bit acidic and it had something of a citrus taste to it, and smelled of fruit like apple or pear. It was, as you might expect, a very clean tasting wine. From there we went to Rosehall Run's "Liberated" (2011, Prince Edward County). This one was oaked, but only lightly. It had a honey-like scent and a had a wonderful long finish (very yum!). We then tried the Cave Spring Chardonnay (2011, Niagara Escarpment). It had been aged for 9 to 10 months in oak and I found it to be acidic and somewhat "zingy" and spicy, but a little bitter despite having some sugar left in it. It did have a nice caramel aftertaste for a long while after having it. Rod indicated that some Chardonnays (I think the Cave Spring, but my notes are a bit jumbled, so don't quote me on it) use a mix (80/20 in this case) of chardonnay grapes and chardonnay musqué grapes (a clone of chardonnay) to give it a greater depth of flavour. Lastly, we had Château des Charmes' "Barrel Fermented Chardonnay" (2010, Niagara-on-the-Lake). It had a flowery smell and a hint of, to me, isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol smell. It was quite sweet and had an almost red wine finish. It had a "softer texture" to its flavour (that Rod said is called "round"), and really filled the mouth. It was definitely too much without having a nibbly plate to have with it (we were provided with plates of local artisanal bread to go with it for all the tastings, it was sooooo good!).

I know way more about wine than I did before starting the tasting series, but more than nothing is still not very much. One of the things I like most about Rod is that he's definitely no bullshit: the cost of the wine doesn't really determine quality, and everyone has different likes and dislikes. Drink what you like and "to hell with wine snobs" is his advice. He did say that there is something of a price point above $30-$40 per bottle where winemakers can afford to put more care into their ingredients and process that they can't when they have to hit a $10-$20 price point, but above that, it's kind of hit or miss even with expensive wines. If nothing else, I feel less intimidated by wine and that's a good thing I guess. He has also given me a much better appreciation for Ontario wines, and that's kind of cool as well.

Up next (and last) this month: Cabernet Franc.
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It's all fun and games until you break out the Ruthenium-106 (106Ru)... then it's a party. Okay, maybe not so much. 3.56MeV electrons anyone? It's all about radiation badges and locked rooms and Geiger-Muller counters these days. It also means that what was once a student office is again a fully commissioned laboratory and there will be no more eating and drinking there. Meh... it's still pretty cool to be using all this stuff :).

The pixel "telescope" is set up and working (minus a couple of irksome software bugs, but that's not too surprising, we'll eventually sort those out), and we've figured out how to run the data acquisition and analysis software chains (not that we have fully grasped any of what it's doing under the hood, but at least we can operate it). I'm still setting up the cooling system (it's a bit trickier than I had anticipated because of the flow issues through so many tiny channels, but I'll sort that out as well), and will be mounting the chiller on the wall so it doesn't have to fight gravity. It's not needed to run the detector (it doesn't need to be cooled to keep from overheating), but rather is used to stabilize the temperature sufficiently below room temperature so it's constant between data taking runs (somewhere around 10°C to 15°C or so, we have yet to decide exactly and probably won't until some more testing is complete). The photomultiplier tubes (PMTs) to use as triggers arrived a couple of weeks ago, but we had to wait until last week for the connectors needed to hook them up to the Trigger Logic Unit (TLU) and I'm waiting for the work to be done by the department electronics guru (he'll be able to do the job properly in a few hours where it would take me a couple of days since I haven't worked with these sort of connector before and he has). We also need to modify the TLU since the PMTs we had to get are aren't the ones the TLU was designed for because the ones it was made for are no longer being made by Hamamatsu... that won't be a huge job and I can do it myself if need be (I've already figured out what exactly needs to be done, it's just a matter of replacing a few parts). Once the PMTs and TLU are ready, I will try to affix some scintillating plastic detectors to the PMTs (and light-tight the assembly) so we can use them as triggers for our testing with the... 106Ru source (see what I did there?). In about two weeks we should have the custom plates back (that I designed) that will allow us to turn the telescope on its end so we can use cosmic ray muons which are mostly between around 1GeV and 5GeV and come pretty much straight down from space (well, they have a cos2θ angular distribution if you are concerned about such things, and a sadly low flux of roughly 1 muon min-1 cm2 steradian-1).

It is rumoured that I will be doing my undergraduate honours project on the calibration, alignment, and general characterization of the telescope this coming year (and maybe even assist somewhat with the work being done at Carleton on the next generation Atlas experiment muon detectors at the Large Hadron Collider, or even Higgs-related data analysis... we shall see). Given the problems I've had with the physics department in the past, I'll believe it when I see it, but there's been a changing of the guard so it's possible this time around. If it does come through, I'll have to drop a couple of the courses I've already signed up for to make space for it. I have started studying this month for the computational physics course I'll be taking with a couple of former classmates this coming year as well. It's a very difficult course because it's the first time we see real statistical analysis and the ROOT framework. It's crosslisted as a Master's level course, but the only difference is that actual post-graduate students get two extra assignments... everything else is the same :P. I'll also be taking two extremely brutal mathematical physics courses with one of the most brutal teachers in the department (the person responsible for my previous failed attempts at doing my honours project... I suspect she actually has it in for me since I don't tend to tow the party line, so this isn't likely going to go well for me).

In less doominous news, as announced a few posts back, my friend Lilith has completed her radio training (some of which was on my show, The Dollar Bin). I was to be her first guest (which is pretty spiff) and, in fact, was. Her show now properly shows up on the CKCU web site and you can listen to her shows "on demand" if you don't manage to tune in live. It is a feminist show called Femme Fatale. As she says on the page: Femme Fatale is a feminist radio program that dives into different feminist topics from various perspectives in the hope of breaking pre-conceived sterotypes about who is a feminist and what a feminist topic is. Having fun and titillating discussions with guests and listeners that opens the conversation on topics not talked about anywhere else. While also playing music and ending with an event calendar, Femme Fatale is a feminist radio program with a punch.

Lesseee... I had my 2nd ever "movie afternoon of doom" weekend last weekend (it seems like a month ago already... and a special thanks to kweenbee for helping me get the house ready beforehand!). I played the following flicks to a mostly stunned, occasionally shouting in confusion, sometimes cheering in celebration, and often jeering in amazement hearty few who were able to come. I had announced that the lineup was going to be:

01:00PM – Bubba Ho-Tep (Elvis and JFK battle evil forces at the Shady Rest retirement home)
02:30PM – Akira (a landmark Japanese animated feature portrays a cyberpunk/dystopian future)
04:45PM – Insignificance (a true classic of contemporary cinema, plus Einstein meets Monroe)
06:30PM – Funky Forest (from the trailers I've seen, this is going to be seriously messed up)
09:00PM – The Guy With Secret Kung Fu (great costumes, fights, and locales... but... so bad!)
10:30PM – Deer Woman (John Landis and son doing a bizarre tongue-in-cheek horror movie)
11:30PM – Paprika (Satoshi Kon's animated masterpiece: brilliant, poingant, and beautiful)

I had planned to show Roadkill if anyone was still functional after all that, but decided (wisely) against it, heh. I'll show it at a future one. I also picked up Pontypool recently (which I have not seen) which is by the same director, and which I am told is an excellent movie.

One of the big surprises was how much everybody enjoyed Bubba Ho-Tep (I'd seen it before once many years ago)... it's a pretty whack piece of cinema but it has social commentary and is just plain-up unabashedly what it is (starring Bruce Campbell and Ossie Davis). Akira was received pretty much as expected (pretty much universally: "wtf?")... I had not seen it since it came out in the theatres, so it was a real treat for me as well (and it blows me away that it was all hand drawn... mind blowing). Insignificance was the serious movie of the day. I had seen it several times myself and had ordered the Criterion Collection edition of the movie (it had been impossible to find earlier) and had not watched it yet. There are still scenes in the movie that I consider to be some of the most powerful ever captured and I notice new things every time I watch it (at least one person has reported being haunted by it, but in a ponderance way, not a nightmare way). Then there was Funky Forest. One of Beep's friends I think said it best: "how could such a thing possibly even exist?". It was in turns sweet, strange, messed up, all out bizarro, and hilarious... and nobody who saw it will ever be the same again (seriously, it's a one way ticket). I didn't know what to expect (although I had seen the director's previous movie The Taste of Tea and it was a beautifully shot and poingant and twisted and funny movie as well... definitely more art house and less gonzo than Funky Forest), but I will definitely sit and watch it again soon (even though it's two and a half hours long... it didn't feel like it). The Guy With Secret Kung Fu is a classic Hong Kong martial arts period piece movie... I bought it for $1 new from a bin of cheapo movies put out Digiview Entertainment (bought along with bad monster movies and a "documentary" about Area 51... also all for $1 new), presumably because nobody had copyrights on them anymore (or nobody cared). The costumes and settings and fight scenes and much of the acting was beautiful and brilliant, but... the dub was nightmarish, the sound effects during the fights were the sort of thing that is made fun of in spoofs of the genre, and foley work was almost random (jet noises, frog sounds, whip cracking sounds, and dive bombing sounds during the fight scenes... so bad!). It's a family favourite and it's almost as fun to watch the people watching the movie as the movie itself ;). Deer Woman is hilaribad (and intentionally so, fyi)... it's part of the "Masters of Horror" series and was directed by John Landis (American Werewolf in London) and written by his son... but it's more of a dark comedy (and there are many laugh-out-loud moments) than a horror movie. Again, enjoyed by all. So many great one-liners! I should mention that Deer Woman was the movie that finally got me lifetime-banned from picking the movie to watch when friends got together when I lived in North Carolina ;). I was on probation after showing them the film Jesus Christ Vampire Hunter (made in Ottawa, and looong before the current round of Lincoln and stuff movies, and probably made for 5000 times less money, literally). Oh, as a note, Jesus Christ Vampire Hunter will be shown at my next movie night later in August ;). For all the howling they did about those two movies, they borrowed them and never returned them before I moved back to Canada, heh. Finally... Paprika. I'm not even sure I have anything to say except it's really one of the few movies I'd actually recommend to everyone to see (and that's saying quite a bit).

Lastly... a while back, I mentioned I was going to a series of wine tastings that are being run as fundraisers for CKCU. Word got around pretty quick and they sold out of the limited seating very quickly earlier this summer. Again, these are being given by food and wine expert Rod Phillips who is really making the events worth going to. Not only is he witty and great to listen to, he has an amazing breadth and depth of knowledge on the subject (he's an actual professor of alcohol... and he tours the world tasting wines and food professionally... this guy has figured out how to live!). Most importantly, he's not all stuck up and knows how to share his enjoyment with others. For the overall series, he chose four grape varieties that grow consistently well in Ontario's climate (cold with a short growing season), and then features four diverse wines made by Ontario wineries made with that month's featured grape. I've been to two tastings since I last updated on the subject: Gamay on June 27th, and Chardonnay on July 25h (uh huh, I've been too busy to really update, thus the posting of essays and short bits). I'll hold off on the Chardonnays until a future post, but here are my notes on the Gamay...

Firstly, Rod believes that Ontario should declare itself home to Gamay grape wines (no other region lays claim to this title) as it grows consistently well here and is used to produce several excellent wines. Gamay got a bad rap because it actually grew well compared to other grape varieties controlled by certain medieval French aristocratic landholders, and so was banned and ordered torn up by the peasants and middle-class growers of the grape (and not before being seriously badmouthed by the aristocrats in question, I might add). From Wikipedia: In contrast to the Pinot noir variety, Gamay ripened two weeks earlier and was less difficult to cultivate. It also produced a strong, fruitier wine in a much larger abundance. In July 1395, the Duke of Burgundy Philippe the Bold outlawed the cultivation of the grape, referring to it as the "disloyal Gaamez" that in spite of its ability to grow in abundance was full of "very great and horrible harshness", due in part to the variety's occupation of land that could be used for the more "elegant" Pinot Noir. 60 years later, Philippe the Good, issued another edict against Gamay in which he stated the reasoning for the ban is that "The Dukes of Burgundy are known as the lords of the best wines in Christendom. We will maintain our reputation". Jerky jerks ;). It's now grown extensively in Beaujolais and in the Loire Valley, and pretty much every cool weather grape region in the world. The first wine we had was Cave Spring from the Niagara Peninsula. I liked it quite a bit and found it spicy, somewhat acidic with a clean taste and short finish, and thought it would make a good wine to have with food. Rod suggested it would go great with stew, ragu, pizza, and pasta. I thought it tasted somewhat Italian in style as well and he said that Italian wines are usually quite acidic because it helps them stand up to tomatoes. I'd never really liked Italian wines, but that's probably because I'd sit down to drink a bottle at it wouldn't be pleasant... I understand now that they are more for having a meal with than having on their own. The second one was Angel's Gate (Niagara Peninsula). I thought this one had a somewhat acetone smell, but it tasted fine. It was definitely drier than the first and had quite a bit of tannin as well. Rod suggested it would be lovely with fruit and crème fraiche, which I agree with. We then moved on to a Château des Charmes (from Niagara-on-the-Lake) which was quite dry and had obviously been oaked quite a bit. I didn't make any other notes on that one... And the last one was Grange of Prince Edward County (from where it says). It was a 2010 (the others were 2011 I think) and I made a single comment for later reference: "weird... fish?". I can't remember exactly why I said that... whether it tasted weird and would go well with fish, or whether it made me think of fish (heh). It's also possible that the wine listed fish as an ingredient because some wineries still use isinglass to clarify wines (because it's not a chemical clarifying agent). I'll have to leave it to your and my imagination with respect to why I wrote that comment :). All the wines were around $12 to $14 a bottle. Overall it was a great experience (again) and I get to do it one more time near the end of August. It also set me to thinking that I would replace soda in my diet (at least for dinner, maybe lunch on the weekends) with wine. Too much pop is one of the issues I have with my diet and moving to something that I would drink much less of would be a huge help to me in reducing my caloric intake (and no, I'm not dieting, but I am trying to eat, and drink, better... I was pretty harsh to my digestive system last year because of all the stress).

I will leave you with a song I'm quite fond of... by Canadian singer/songwriter Sarah Harmer:

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So... as a treat to myself (and to support a radio station fundraiser), I went to the first installment of four this summer of "Taste the Great Grapes of Ontario" at Mike's Place at Carleton University (actually on campus for a change, which is one of the other reasons why I was excited by it... well, that and booze, but...). All in all, I'm really happy I did. The presenter, Rod Phillips, is accessible, no bullshit or pretension, fun and witty, and epic knowledgeable. In addition to writing books and travelling the world to taste wines; writing columns for The Ottawa Citizen (newspaper), NUVO (Canadian west coast magazine), and The World of Fine Wine (UK, and what he claims is the best wine magazine in the world); he is also a professor at Carleton who introduced and still teaches courses on both sexuality (in particular as it relates to the history of the family structure) and brewing and distilling (the history thereof... and yes, he serves everyone in his class a drink each and every lecture... and yes, the course is still being offered, although it's somewhat popular and at the 3rd year level, heh). Seriously, this is a guy who has made sex and alcohol his living ;). Anyway, most important, I actually took some time for myself to do something that isn't work (work work or school work or house work).

The "grape du mois" this time around was Reisling, we had three Reislings from Ontario, but the people who were actually buying the wine Rod asked for messed up and got a Gewurztraminer from the producer he asked for instead of their Reisling (he wanted us to try an Alsacian Reisling in comparison to Ontario's). Anyway, I liked them all, although I'm still not a big fan of Reislings, they were all much better than most of the Ontario whites I've tried. I also learned that one of the reasons I've had trouble with Gewurztraminers is they are so strong and acidic that they are only really palatable with food, not on their own (which I remember, after he said that, is why I decided I didn't like them... because I was trying to just drink them by themselves). He said that Gewurztraminers are quite wonderful and popular if served with spicy foods and things like Asian dishes or dishes with garlic and ginger. The one we tried was Willm Reserve Gewurztraminer (from Alsace), fyi. Hmmm... I learned something there already. He also said a few other things: most people like wines with a bit of sweetness to them even though they won't admit to it (apparently liking wines that don't turn to dust in your mouth is not snooty enough... people who taste wines professionally like both and drink both, and he says it's okay to like sweeter wines, so don't be inhibited!). He also said that some Reislings are very good with spicy foods as well. In particular of the three we tried, the Fielding Estate Reisling (all the rest of the wines are from Ontario) is sweeter and works well with that sort of food. Because Reislings are quite acidic (he called them the "Granny Smith" of the grape world), these sorts of wines go really, really well with oily or greasy foods because it washes away the coating in your mouth so you can continue to enjoy the food past the first few bites. Things like alfredo or cream sauces, salmon, and that sort of thing. They are good summer wines as well (which several people said they enjoyed about them). One of the other things he said is that Reisling is a good variety for Ontario because it consistently does well in our climate here... he singled out Cabernet-Sauvingon as being a stupid grape to try and grow here because only one year in three or four has any chance of producing anything properly ripened. Another of the wines we tried was the Trius Reisling. I have been reluctant to buy any Trius wines because they are kind of everywhere, so I assumed it was just crappy mass-production plonk. Not so apparently, and I have to say that it was quite good (he said it's better than good, it's a consistently high quality family of wines). He said he loved to drink this wine with smoked salmon in particular. It definitely had the most intense flavour of the three Reislings we tried. The last one to mention is Cave Spring 'Estate Bottled' Reisling, which was the first wine served, and remained my favourite of the bunch. A few other points that were revelatory to me... we apparently serve white wine too cold and red wine too warm. I know I have done both, and trying the wines the way he presented them (we tried the white very cold, at the temperature he suggested, and then when warm) made a huge difference in how enjoyable they were. In specific, he said that white wine should be served at 15°C to 16°C (the fridge is 4°C), and red wine should be served at 18°C (!)... cool, not cold, and not room temperature (otherwise they come off as being rough and unrefreshing... yup, definitely the way I served them, sorry). He said that under no circumstances should we obsess about temperature ("just enjoy the wine, okay?"), but it was usually enough to take a wine out of the fridge about 20 minutes before serving it (25 for red wine), and that usually did the trick just fine. Next month, he will be presenting the Gamay variety, which he called the great underappreciated wine of Ontario (he went as far as to suggest that it should be made the official variety of Ontario because it makes great wine virtually every year, even when other varieties get ruined by the weather). So there you go, if you've read this, you know as much (or more) about wine as I do... :).

Oh... got the purchasing code for the Studio One Professional software I was talking about in an earlier post (yay, for taking free Coursera courses and being surprised by this very, very generous offer from Presonus for people who completed the course). I'm just waiting for money to make it onto my prepaid Canada Post Visa (seriously, if you need a Visa card and your credit sucks or you don't want debt, this one has worked very well for me!), which should be three days or so, then I will be able to get it and start the process of finishing the setup of the studio in the basement :). If you want to record something, keep your eyes peeled here and I'll let you know when it's ready for visitors...
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Here's the playlist, etc. for my eleventh show (Apr. 25, 2011). However, despite the fact there is apparently no host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin", I was only able to do my show because I had a doctor's appointment lined up (I did something to my foot... nothing serious, but I wanted it looked at). Since nobody showed up, and dead air is not acceptable in my books, I threw on the Delerium album "Poem" on continuous play and repeat in hopes that there was enough diversity to catch the attention of anyone tuning in that hour before I headed off. As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to random chaos every Monday (woot!) from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
The show was divided mostly into funk and electronica with some Charlatans 'UK' and off the beaten path Sugar Ray tossed in for seasoning. Glad I finally got to play some Neotropic on one of my shows, it just didn't fit into any other mix so I jumped at the chance to sandwich it between a couple of Cygnus X tracks.
I did the "distributed spotlight" thing again where I have tracks for the spotlight band spread over the course of the show. I thought it worked out well, and as I said, finally allowed me to play some Neotropic. The show started with a track off one of the albums that started me on my fascination with dollar bin albums: Greazy Meal's "Digitalize World Greaze". When I lived in Charlotte, North Carolina for a year, I found a record store called Manifest Disks that had an awesome used CD section... everything from 808 State to Sarah MacLachlan for awesome prices... and their new CD section was one of the most eclectic and diverse I've ever seen. They also got indie acts to play in the middle of the store every few weeks... the sort of thing that Ottawa is sorely lacking, I might add. Along the side of the used section, they had half a dozen tables, several square metres, of used CDs for between 1 and 5 dollars. I decided to flip through them (I was a bit broke at the time and was hankerin' for new music), and I figured with prices like that at worst I was buying some coasters, so I picked up five albums for a dollar each, and one for 2 dollars. I was surprised that some of the albums were excellent, and that all of them were good. All of the albums were from artists that I would not have pulled off the shelf new because I didn’t know any of them at all. I also played a track off a little gem I found: Hal, off their "Extremis" single, which features the voice of Gillian Anderson (Agent Scully from the X-Files). And I also decided to play another of my favourite tracks on the "wtf" section of the show: "Buffalo Wing Pizza" by Greazy Meal, where they recorded a guy trying to order that from a pizzeria. Very funny!
Greazy Meal, Digitalize World Greaze, "Vitamin U (The 8th Essential Remix plus Iron)"
Hal, Extremis (CD single), "Extremis (Qattara Remix Edit feat. Gillian Anderson)"Cygnus X, Hypermetrical, "Kinderlied Part I"
Neotropic, 15 Levels of Magnification, "Laundry Pt. 3"
Cygnus X, Hypermetrical, "Hypermetrical"
Greazy Meal, Digitalize World Greaze, "Buffalo Wing Pizza (Bonus Track)"
Green Room, Funk It Up For The Universe, "New Mother"
The Charlatans UK, The Only One I Know (CD single), "The Only One I Know"
Sugar Ray, 14:59, "Personal Space Invader"
Cygnus X, Hypermetrical, "Inda Kasa"
Cygnus X began as a collaboration between Matthias Hoffmann and Ralf Hildenbeutel, who later left and everything after was just Hoffman. Other projects of the pair include A.C. Boutsen, Brainchild, and Dee.FX. Their first release was "Superstring" in 1993. Their third trance track, "The Orange Theme", released in 1994, was the project's best received track. Their releases "Positron" and "Hypermetrical" became also well known hits of the genre. Pretty much a one gig wonder, although they released a “collected works” album in 2003. A the UK electronic music artist Riz Maslen with as Neotropic off her 1995 album "15 Levels Of Magnification". She has released almost a dozen recordings under the Neotropic moniker and another half dozen as Small Fish With Spine, and appears to be still active in making and recording music. Oh, and if that wasn’t enough, she also makes films. I really liked Green Room, but could not find much info about them other than they were Canadian and from the west coast. Good funk!

And that was it this time around. I like the lyrical hook in this one after about 2:20!

And how about a bit of Can-Con? Not Sugar Ray, but rather Big Sugar (notice what I did there? lol)... love this song, and they have the coolest bass player of all time!

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Here's the playlist, etc. for my TENTH show (Apr. 11, 2011)... which also went for a double shift because there is apparently no host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin" (and who am I to turn down an hour of "play whatever I bloody feel like or even pull CDs at random from the library" radio?!?!). As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to mind-altering chaos every second Monday (until April 25th, then it will be going WEEKLY, woot!) from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
As is often the case, many of the bands that end up in the dollar bin only recorded the one commercial album and then disappeared, we certainly had more than our fair share of it this time around. Not bad, but singular. Conversely, there was no excuse for Lucas to release the crap he did (his first album was kinda fun). Show had two primary sets... one "alt rock" and the other was funk. Just 'cause. Ended with some angry music... 'cause I'm angry at politics these days.
One fun thing that happened is a couple of the "kids" who were working at cataloguing new CDs and adding them to the library came into the booth while BKS was playing and said it sounded really cool, and asked what it was. Definitely a good track of that album (not quite so formulaic techno as much of the rest of it). And that about sums it all up, so here is the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Baba, Mind Music, "Why (Part I)"
BKS, Astroplane, "Kenya Chill"
Baba, Mind Music, "Why (Part II)"
Groovenics, Groovenics, "Chopsticks"
Baby Animals, Shaved And Dangerous, "Backbone"
Mad At Gravity, Resonance, "Run For Cover"
Amazing Device, The Quiet Room, "Secret (feat. Ian Watkins)"
Lucas, To Rap My World Around You, "Storm Warning"
Folkswaggin', Psychefolkadelic, "Simple Things"
Baba, Mind Music, "X-Perience"
Galactic, Vintage Reserve, "Doublewide"
Baba, Mind Music, "Why (Part III)"
Found Dead Hanging, Dulling Occam's Razor, "A .45 Calibre Defribulator: A Prototype Of Sorts"
As you can see, I interspersed the "spotlight" with other tracks throughout the show. The "Why (Part ?)" were spoken word and beatboxing with didgeridoo and flute. Not typical hip-hop/rap, pretty cool stuff. "X-Perience" was a full music track by Baba. A review of Baba by Michael Gowan stated: "This is not gangsta rap or hip-hop-hurray rap; this is philosopher rap. Similar to the styles of De La Soul and Black Eyed Peas, Baba is more likely to wax poetic about the promise of the examined life than glorify misogyny or drug pushing. The NYC-based rapper shows how exposure and openness to a wide range of musical influences can meld into one complex style." Definitely the case, and I'm keeping my eye out for other albums by this guy! So that was The Dollar Bin... this was my spontaneous set for "Mid-Day Mind Control" (of which I stated, Loud and angry to aetherial and beautiful. Fasten your mindbelts for the ride):
Rage Against The Machine, The Matrix Soundtrack, "Wake Up"
My Life With The Thrill Kill Cult, Kooler Than Jesus, "The Devil Does Drugs"
Nash The Slash, Children Of The Night, "Wolf"
Bjork, Post, "Army Of Me"
Filter, Short Bus, "Hey Man Nice Shot"
Propellerheads, The Matrix Soundtrack, "Spybreak"
Goldfrapp, Black Cherry, "Hairy Trees"
Goldfrapp, Supernature, "You Never Know"
Baba, Mind Music, "Beatbox Logic"
Heh, couldn't help but play "Beatbox Logic", such a good track! Kicked off things with Rage... still in a political mood: WAKE UP!!! Sheesh, never has it been truer that "people get the government they deserve"... the Conservatives formed the government (twice) since the last election with less than 20% support from eligible voters... mostly because the winner in the last election was "I don't fucking care about my future or the future of my fellow citizens enough to get off my pimply lard ass and go to the polls to vote once every couple of years". And for everyone who is whining that having another election this year is a waste of money, that's the way democracy is supposed to work: a government with such a low percentage of popular support that doesn't give a rats ass about working with the other parties is supposed to fall. BTW, if you don't vote, don't talk to me until next election about how badly thing suck in Canada, that's the one privilege your vote will get you. Hmmm... apparently I'm opinionated on a particular topic ;). I did tell people to vote on the show, but made no partisan declarations on the air (frankly, if the Conservatives get in because a large enough number of Canadians want them, I'll accept that, but that clearly hasn't been the case). So, back to the music... one other thing of note was that I played Björk's "Army Of Me", which was part of the soundtrack of the movie "Sucker Punch"... a film that I liked quite a bit (and which the women I saw it with said they found empowering, not oppressive). And a movie that is certainly divisive. I asked for people to call in and state their opinion of it on the air, but nobody did (is anyone ever listening? lol), so I invite you to state your opinion of the movie here... but only if you've seen it. The strongest criticism I've heard has come from people who have based their opinion on a couple of reviews and a trailer or two... and I have a problem with that. P.S. If you are going to see it, Imax makes a big difference to the film (where it doesn't for many others I find)!

So, here's my favourite of the TV trailers for "Sucker Punch" (that I thought best captured the spirit of the film, the rest really irritated me):

And here's a mind-blowing (seriously, it'll fry your noodle) video for "The Devil Does Drugs" using scenes from the absolutely amazing animated film "Paprika" (which I would recommend if you haven't seen it yet... opening sequence is here, wow):

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Here's the playlist, etc. for my ninth show (Mar. 28, 2011)... which also went for a double shift because there is apparently no host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin". Now, I have to come clean here... it's the end of the term and I've been seriously fried. So fried that I forgot that I had to do my show until an hour before it was time to go on air! Praise be to Harris (a co-op über student from Waterloo [Engineering] that I've been working with over the past few months in the labs at Carleton) for loaning me his USB stick so I could pull the show together as well as I did. Thankfully I'm also a techno wienie and have an Internet server in my living room that I use as my web and file server that I was able to pull MP3 off of (I rip my CDs as I get them so I can listen to them easily for pleasure and for picking for the show, but use the CDs themselves when I go to air). This show was all MP3s... and all things considered, I thought it turned out pretty well. Instead of a spotlight per se (I had some of the show already picked out), I did a mini-spotlight where I played two songs (by Canada's Crash Vegas and Iceland's The Sugarcubes) that always reminded me of each other (even thought they don't really sound the same). They do lead nicely from one to the other though: "Moving Too Fast" to "Motorcrash", heh. As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to mind-altering chaos every second Monday (until April 25th, then it will be going WEEKLY, woot!) from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
From art house to a full punk set and songs that kinda sound the same to songs that are radically different. More music less talk today and awesome music from end to end.
Now, to my credit, I'd already picked the Skirt, Speedbumps, and Pablo's Eye tracks to play and had the punk set pretty much together with The Marshes, 7 Seconds, and O-Matic (loooove that track!), and had flagged the Chimera tracks for eventual play (they just got lumped in because it was easier)... but I had to put the rest of the tracks together from memory and then had to do the "research" for the tracks "on the fly" as I did my show... yikes! Live radio indeed! Without further ramblings, here is the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Pablo's Eye, Grass of '96, "Les Larmes du Tigre"
Pablo's Eye, Grass of '96, "Gone By Night"
The Marshes, Grass of '96, "Offshore"
Suicidal Tendencies, Join The Church of Suicidal, "War In My Head"
7 Seconds, The Music The Message, "The Kids Are United"
O-Matic, Grass of '96, "No Pinky, No Leather"
Crash Vegas, Red Earth, "Moving Too Fast"
The Sugarcubes, Life's Too Good, "Motorcrash"
Skirt, Choking On Sugar, "Speed Under Her Feet"
Cosmik Connection, Electrojazzset, "Rootsman"
Baba, Mind Music, "Mind Music"
Chimera, Grass of '96, "Catch Me"
Chimera, Grass of '96, "Night Song"
Speedbumps, Crayon Box, "Thursday's Chicken"
The Pablo's Eye tracks were particularly interesting... beautifully arthouse/creative. I tried to look for tracks on the Intertubes to listen to, but nothing was quite as good as the ones that were on the Grass Records label sampler. The Cosmik Connection track, "Rootsman", was pretty sweet as well! And then my spontaneous (read: panicked) play list I put together for "Mid-Day Mind Control" on the fly:
Paddy Ryan, Chain Link Fence, "Rise"
Kurt Swinghammer, Vostok 6, "Dark"
Pomplamoose, Pomplacovers, "La Vie En Rose"
Pomplamoose, Pomplacovers, "Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)"
Jarett Norton and Danny Dodge, N/A, "Death Metal Friday"
Triptaka, Second War, "Suspended"
Ancient Obliteration, A Menacing Reality, "Radiated Overlords"
Voivod, Nothingface, "Astronomy Domine"
Beautiful Nubia and Roots Renaissance Band, Sun No Dey Sleep, "Eyes Always Open"
Tru Rez Crew, I'm A Lucky One, "I'm A Lucky One"
Now, I was a little punchy I think and played a few wtf tracks for sure (notably "La Vie En Rose" and "Death Metal Friday", lol... and threatened listeners with more of the same if they didn't call in with requests... nobody did so either: nobody was listening, or people actually enjoyed that shit, heh). There was a bit of a "prog rock" opening to the show. I wanted to allow Paddy Ryan to redeem himself after the "throw me on the floor and group fuck me" incident when we played a track at random off his album (eep... the only track on they album like it, of course). Kurt Swinghammer's album "Vostok 6" is one of my favorite albums of all time (a tribute concept album to cosmonaut Валентина Терешкова [Valentina Tereshkova]) and it was great to play a track off of it. My friend Robotika pointed out "Death Metal Friday" and it was too good (read: bad) not to inflict share with people (look it up on YouTube... well worth the visit, heh). I am also glad I played Tru Rez Crew (awesome aboriginal band) and you can't go wrong with Montreal's Voivod. The Triptaka, Ancient Obliteration, and Beautiful Nubia and Roots Renaissance Band were all new Canadian CDs that I pulled at semi-random (I didn't know what they sounded like before I played them)... awesome stuff as usual! The Ancient Obliteration album was particularly wack with track titles like "Pagan Rape" and "Seeking the Slimegod" I read the lyrics for the track I played at least before I spun it ;). Well, always eager to promote Canadian bands... I'll leave you with one Ancient Obliteration track ("Portal Beast (live)" ... maybe this will help dispel the notion that Canadians are "nice") and one from The Dollar Bin band Chimera, "Night Song"... there are so many bands and albums and tracks named "Chimera" that this stuff is almost impossible to find in the noise ;).

Not all Canadians are "nice":

These people are nice, but they're not Canadian:

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Breaking news: The Dollar Bin is going WEEKLY!!! The previously scheduled bi-weekly show will happen on schedule (April 25th) and then the show will air weekly from that point onward! No more trying to remember what week it's on... now it has a regular time slot. Now I can add "keeps you regular" to the many miracle benefits of listening to my show :).

Oh, did I mention that I was elected to the Board of Governors of CKCU at their recent AGM (as one of the student representatives)? Maybe not... so if you have any ideas on how CKCU could better serve the student body of Carleton, the broader community in Ottawa, or better serve listeners globally (CKCU streams live on the Internet at or have any ideas or suggestions in general, please let me know and I will take your feedback to the board. If my life was any weirder, I'd have to write about it in a blog or something...

P.S. "Like" me on Facebook... :)

Okay... in celebration, here's a fan video for a song I played on the "Mid-Day Mind Control" that I've been nominally filling in for months (fun because I don't have the "dollar bin" rules so I can, and do, play anything that strikes my fancy)... NSFW, but I thought a brilliant mesh between visuals (taken from the pr0n film "Alice In Acidland") and the feel of the song (I've been playing the song over and over while I study for my exams).

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Here's the playlist, etc. for my eighth show (Mar. 14, 2011)... which also went for a double shift because there is apparently no host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin". Once again, I was joined by my younger daughter Laura who was off from school that day. Again, she proved remarkable in her adaptability to a live radio environment and comported herself with a professionalism that belies her age (she just turned 15, fyi, earlier in April!). As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to mind-altering chaos every second Monday from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
Most tracks chosen by Laura who is on March Break from Canterbury HS... from the emo to the more emo and plenty of pop and rock. Nana korobi, ya oki. Our thoughts and prayers went out today to the people of Japan reeling from a 9.0 magnitude earthquake, tsunamis, over 10000 dead, and the meltdown of multiple nuclear reactors.
Yes, the Great Northeast Earthquake had just occurred and the initial reports of scores dead from the earthquake itself (which was amazing and hopeful given the power of the thing) was giving way to reports of tens of thousands likely dead from the tsunami that followed (some of which were found to have been over 37 metres (!!!) high as they swept inland). In parallel with the devastation of entire cities, was a further tragedy what would evolve into the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl because of the failure of the Fukushima Daichi nuclear station (which is a situation still out of control as I write this). We dedicated the last track of The Dollar Bin to the victims in Japan, and Laura said a few words in Japanese to the effect of "fall down seven times, get up eight times". The "fromage" track (Landscape) did talk about the nuclear issue, but more from a Cold War perspective. With regards to the show's overall contents, from the written part of the script (critical for when there are more than one, even if it's sparse in places, it keeps us on track and we can fill in on the fly), I had the following to say:
Reading Week has come and gone at Carleton, but it was pointed out to me a few days ago that it’s March Break for the high schools in Ottawa this week. To that end I'm joined again by Laura Kurosakura, a Canterbury High School student, who will be co-hosting the show today. Welcome back Laura [Laura says hello]. I've invited her back because she did a bang up job last time and she has demonstrated her appreciation for the musically unexpected. I asked her to pick a few tracks off my dollar bin collection and she came back with two-thirds of the show, including a spotlight on Plexi. To her credit, as she searched through the collection, she randomly ran across it, and although she'd never heard the band before, after listening to a few tracks and doing some research on this rather unusual band, she asked if we could do the spotlight on them. Well, sure I say! I'd listened through it myself a while back and liked what I heard, but didn’t know anything about the band. [...]

Now I have to say I had absolutely nothing to do with the choice of music, I wasn't even there when she was doing it, and I don't think she heard my last show... but Laura somehow chose the song that I kicked my last show off with. Well, not this version of the song, rather it was the 4-track demo for it that I found on a compilation. Yes, none other than London, England's Elastica. Together from '92 to 2001 with two album releases. They were a mainstay of indie and alternative radio at the time, and remain one of my favourites. I had been planning to play this particular track myself on one of my shows, but apparently, out of the thousands of songs you could have chosen, you picked "Blue" by Elastica. "You're a little scary sometimes, you know that? Brilliant... but scaaary."
Heh. Without further delay or ramblings, here is the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Soul Coughing, Songs In The Key of X, "Unmarked Helicopter"
The Hunger, Cinematic Superthug, "Phoenix"
Elastica, Elastica, "Blue"
Boo, Oh Yah! Records Sampler, "Johnny"
Downstroke, Distorted Sunshine, "Wednesday Again"
Plexi, Cheer Up, "Forest Ranger"
Plexi, Cheer Up, "Dayglo"
Plexi, Cheer Up, "Fourget"
Landscape, Electricity: 18 Synth Pop Hits, "Einstein A Go-Go"
Mosquitos, Planet Buzz, "Boombox"
Jane Siberry, No Borders Here, "Mimi On The Beach"
Machete Avenue, Make Trade Fair, "Cut To Pieces"
We then spontaneously put together what I thought was a great show for Mid-Day Mind Control:
Filter, Songs In The Key of X, "Thanks Bro"
Ultravox, Electricity: 18 Synth Pop Hits, "The Thin Wall"
Goldfrapp, Winter Chill 2, "Utopia"
The Verve, Urban Hymns, "Bittersweet Symphony"
The Cure, Galore, "Pictures Of You"
Foo Fighters, Songs In The Key of X, "Down In The Park"
Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton, Knives Don't Have Your Back, "Crowd Surf Off A Cliff"
Our Lady Peace, Gravity, "Innocent"
Garbage, Absolute Garbage, "The World Is Not Enough"
Daft Punk, Harder Better Faster Stronger 2008 (Alive Club Mixes), "Harder Better Faster Stronger 2008 (Alive Club Mix)"
Great Big Sea, Play, "Ordinary Day"
Goodnight Nurse, Our Song, "Milkshake"
The Emily Haines and Great Big Sea were both requests (woot! callers!) and Laura picked the last song of the show, and I just about pissed myself it was so funny (2 hours in "the booth" and I gotta go pretty bad... especially since I usually buy a coffee just before going in, heh). And on that note, I hope you find it as funny as I did... warm it up, the boys are waiting... hahaha they didn't even change the lyrics, ftw!

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Here's the playlist, etc. for my seventh show (Feb. 28, 2011)... which also went for a double shift despite the fact that it is rumoured there is apparently finally a new host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin". I did the last two shows with co-hosts but was solo once again for this one. I survived the hellish nightmare that was February... basically doing the equivalent of 7 courses at once... and then was sick for pretty much the whole first week of March. I'm guessing my body just said fuck you (with the aid of some sort of virus) and shut down until I'd had enough rest. I did manage to get this show done (despite a rather noticeable snowstorm that made travel in Ottawa more than a little difficult) before heading home and staying there until Friday.

As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to mind-altering chaos every second Monday from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
From the ultra rare (Elastica) to the impossibly good for only $0.50 (the Baba album... seriously a favourite find); from power pop to chip music and classic bar bands; there's always something good waiting for the adventurous listener in The Dollar Bin.
I was glad to be able to play a little more Canadian content on this one and did a spotlight on one of the ultimate Canadian bands: the Odds.
The Odds are a textbook case of what it takes to be successful as a Canadian band in our rather unforgiving musical landscape. The band was formed in ’87 in Vancouver, consisting of vocalist-guitarists Craig Northey and Steven Drake (both of whom had led different bands appearing on a Vancouver music compilation album, Spotlight '86), bassist Doug Elliott and drummer Paul Brennan. In the late 80s, the band played four nights a week as a 60s and 70s cover band called Dawn Patrol, while playing as the Odds on weekends and funding their own demo recordings, hoping for a break. The band members claim the name came when Brennan asked Drake, in a town somewhere on the BC coast, "What are the odds of us ever escaping bullshit gigs like this?" They traveled to Los Angeles doing showcases and eventually signed to Zoo Entertainment.

They released their debut self-produced album, Neopolitan, in ‘91, which spawned the radio hits "Love Is the Subject" and "King of the Heap". A third single, the sexually explicit "Wendy Under the Stars", failed to chart, but attracted the attention of a music critic for its unusual homage to Elvis, and the band was subsequently picked up by Warren Zevon, becoming his touring band for his album Mr. Bad Example. They released a followup album in ‘93 and began a somewhat controversial ongoing collaboration with the members of Kids In The Hall which continues to this day. During the recording of the album we’re listening to, Good Weird Feeling, their drummer left and joined Big Sugar and he was replaced by Pat Steward. The album went on to be their most commercially successful one. They did one more album in ‘96 called “Nest” and then broke up in ‘99 (releasing a singles compilation album in 2000). They got back together in 2007 to play on a music themed cruise in the Caribbean put together by the Bare Naked Ladies, and went on to record an album in 2008 and, after re-securing the rights to their material, they released an EP in 2009 and have started touring again.
I also had a wonderful treat with an ultra-rare in the form of a 4-track demo track from Elastica. I've been listening to it at home over and over and was happy to be able to share on The Dollar Bin. I have to say that Baba knocked my socks off as well... beatboxing, flute, and digeridoo... mind blowing (been listening to that too)! Without further adieu, here is the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Elastica, Buy-Product 2: Brief Encounters, "Blue (Donna's 4-Track Demo)"
Camus, Sins Of The Father, "Send Her My Love"
Southern Culture On The Skids, Buy-Product 2: Brief Encounters, "Red Beans n' Reverb"
Fordirelifesake, Dance Pretend Forget Defend, "From Tragedy To Imaginary"
Baba, Mind Music, "Beatbox Logic"
Camus, Sins Of The Father, "Ouch"
Odds, Good Weird Feeling, "Mercy To Go"
Odds, Good Weird Feeling, "Leave It There"
Odds, Good Weird Feeling, "Eat My Brain"
Odds, Good Weird Feeling, "The Last Drink"
Stoa, Seireenia, "Maare Illuscend"
Liquified, 13 Methods of Hallucination, "Tiny Spacey"
For "Mid-Day Mind Control", I actually had someone call in with a request :)... for Root Boy Slim's "Dare To Be Fat" or The Bangles' "Walk Like An Egyptian". Well, I kinda played both... mwahahaha... got the first and decided to mix it up a little and play The Cleverlys' version of the Bangles song... yeah... I guess I'll post the video below... has to be seen to be believed (although their version of "Hocus Pocus" by Focus is a masterpiece of surrealist performance art). I also played one of my favourites... Captured! By Robots, off their album fully titled "The Musical Version of The Movie Version of The Ten Commandments"... where The Cleverlys are twisted, Captured! By Robots is a full on mindfuck... one guy and all the rest of the band are robots he built after being thrown out of a ska band. Okay... that's going to be the bonus video (I can't not post something of his)! Oh, and I also played a couple of tracks off the amazing soundtrack to the new Tron movie. I was really worried that Daft Punk would screw up it up (and I'm a Daft Punk fan), but they nailed it completely. Nice! Anyway, here's the playlist:
Morcheeba, The Antidote, "Ten Men"
Eurythmics, Greatest Hits, "It's Alright (Baby's Coming Back)"
Captured! By Robots, The Ten Commandments, "Nefritiri Sex Jam"
Root Boy Slim, YouTube Video, "Dare To Be Fat"
Chumbawamba, Tubthumper, "Smalltown"
Metric, Live It Out, "Monster Hospital"
The Cleverlys, YouTube Video, "Walk Like An Egyptian"
Beck, Buy-Product 2: Brief Encounters, "Novocaine"
Daft Punk, Tron Legacy Soundtrack, "The Grid"
Daft Punk, Tron Legacy Soundtrack, "The Son Of Flynn"
Chumbawamba, Readymades, "Sewing Up Crap"
Chumbawamba, Readymades, "All In Vain"
And here are ... the videos:

For all y'all foreign types with yer hookie pipes...

And Captured! By Robots... I fucking love this guy!!! In this video, he's playing Moses, the OTOG: the "Old Testament Original Gangster" as he says on his album ;).

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Here's the playlist, etc. for my sixth show (Feb. 14, 2011)... which also went for a double shift because there is apparently no host for "Mid-Day Mind Control" which runs after "The Dollar Bin". This particular show was special because it was both a Valentines Day show and because I was joined by my older daughter Morgan for her radio debut!!! Now both of my offspring have now co-hosted my show... just to show I don't play favourites — who went first was simply a matter of timing and convenience (Laura had a day off from school Jan. 31st, so she went first). Both did awesome jobs, each in a different way, and both took to their airwaves like they were meant to be there! Morgan's advantage over her sister, albeit a temporary one, is that she has a much more mature sounding voice (Morgan is 17 and Laura is 14) and could easily do professional radio or voice work (and I'm trying to convince her to at least explore voice work).

As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to mind-altering chaos every second Monday from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
Music chosen by Morgan. Although we played Bobby McFerrin, the condition was that we NOT play *that* song. Sadly, since that conversation the song was stuck in my head... hopefully you faired better than I... Other than that, this was a wonderfully diverse and varied show with music from country to straight up punk.
I was particularly surprised and interested by her choice of Bobby McFerrin for the "spotlight". He is certainly a brilliant musician, but not too many people appreciate that fact or have heard anything but his "one hit song". Frankly, his rendition of "Sunshine Of Your Love" is truly a thing of wonder! Without further adieu, here is the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Magnapop, Rubbing Doesn't Help, "Down On Me"
Llama Farmers, El Toppo, "You Bore Me"
Ohm-G, Voodoo Roux Deux, "Coming Down"
Mad At Gravity, Resonance, "Time And Time Again"
Speedbumps, Crayon Box, "Street Sign Man"
Dead Roses, I Hate It Here, I Never Want To Leave, "I Death You To Death!"
Butch Willis, 1996 Teenbeat Sampler, "Mummies Don't Die"
Bobby McFerrin, Simple Pleasures, "All I Want"
Bobby McFerrin, Simple Pleasures, "Drive My Car"
Bobby McFerrin, Simple Pleasures, "Sunshine Of Your Love"
The Cosmos, Sort Of, Kind Of, Not Really, But Badly Executed By..., "What's Black And White"
Left Front Tire, 42 Ways To Lose A Friend, "For What It Means"
Downstroke, Distorted Sunshine, "You Might Like It"
Monostar, The Airport, "Bahamas Heavy!"
We started out the show by my talking about the problem of racism we faced living in North Carolina and how it was much more overt there than it is here (it's still a problem here, it's just more subtle and subversive) and how Morgan had a vision for a short film that used the Magnapop song as its soundtrack (the film was to be more of a music video with a story). She then read: Imagine a slave woman on a plantation working in the field with her baby wailing from the hot sun on it's tender skin. She hears the baby wailing but cannot comfort it for fear of stopping her work and being whipped for it. Later she expresses her growing hatred and frustration by burning down her master's house and walking away from all of the pain. "You Can't See My Anger/You Can Only Feel It." I can't find a link to the song anywhere, so you'll have to take my word that it works really well as an idea and that it's powerful to hold that image listening to the music.

And then, the spontaneous playlist for Mid-Day Mind Control... this is where Morgan's creativity really came to the fore when she spontaneously suggested after playing the B-52's song "Juliet Of The Spirits" (my request) and Sister Soleil's "Liar" (her request) that we had embarked on an exploration of relationships and that we would continue the rest of the show examining various aspects of that theme. As I wrote on the playlist notes: We did all the facets of valentines: from love to breakup, from creepy to the innocent, from the stalker to the couple. From the passion of relationships to the passion of art and creativity. A wonderful moment of spontaneous radio (and a kickass set of music to boot)!
B-52's, Funplex, "Juliet Of The Spirits"
Sister Soleil, Soularium, "Liar"
Art Of Noise, The Seduction of Claude Debussy, "The Holy Egoism Of Genius"
Evelyn Evelyn, Evelyn Evelyn, "Elephant Elephant"
Don Felder, Heavy Metal Soundtrack, "Heavy Metal (Takin' A Ride)"
Seal, Seal, "Show Me"
Pomplamoose, Pomplacovers, "Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)"
Kurt Swinghammer, Vostok 6, "Valentina"
Pomplamoose, Pomplasongs, "If You Think You Need Some Lovin"
Neutralizing Force, This Is What We Do!!!, "Two Plus Two Makes Four"
We actually had two separate and independent requests for Pomplamoose (?!?!) and played ones that tied into the theme of the show. I was also blown away by Morgan's decision to play the extremely flippant "Elephant Elephant" song immediately after the very serious "The Holy Egoism Of Genius", but she explained it (on air) as being an amazing example of the holy egoism of genius in the guise of Amanda Palmer and Jason Webley. It was also funny in that when the next host came in shortly before 4PM, the song "Two Plus Two Makes Four" was playing. It's a "chip music" composition (I'm a huge fan of chip music!!!) and he asked what 70s album it was from... well, it's off a 2005 compilation that a friend of mine had a song on (Ad·ver·sary)... ah, the old is new again :).

And here's a video of a live performance of "The Holy Egoism Of Genius" (and if you want to follow it up with "Elephant Elephant", it's here, heh).

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Here's the playlist for my fifth show (Jan. 31st, 2011)... which, predictably, also turned into a spontaneous back-to-back (2 hour long) show because the next host didn't show up yet again. This time the station manager knew he wasn't coming and was scrambling to throw on some vinyl to pass the hour, but I offered to take the show (hey, airtime, duh!). This time around, it was a very special show in a very special way: I was joined by my younger daughter Laura for her radio debut!!! She had exams the previous week and the new term didn't start until Tuesday, so she was available to come with me. She was nervous to start, but by the end was ad-libbing with ease and even had a few moments of proper "radio voice". It certainly put my rather faltering first steps onto the radio (on Dean's "Monday Morning Special Blend" info/music show) to shame — she took to it pretty much instantly, and I was incredibly impressed and proud! I guess those drama lessons and parts in plays were worth all the effort (on both our parts... I sometimes felt I had to work harder than she did when she was participating... but I was building and painting sets and she was just learning scripts, songs, dance numbers, and stage directions, heh).

As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to mind-altering chaos every second Monday from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
A little literature never hurt anyone... and so The Dollar Bin brought you poetry by the the thousand dollar William Blake. Songs, for the most part, chosen by Laura (with the exception of Fat Day and Snagglepuss, which she assumes no responsibility for).
Without further adieu, here is the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Science Park, Disinformation, "U-Boats"
Transister, Transister, "Day #1"
The Echoing Green, Supernova, "Thief"
The Echoing Green, Supernova, "December"
The Echoing Green, Supernova, "Yesterday’s Taking Over"
Fat Day, IV, "Brown Bunny"
Snagglepuss, The Country Club Sessions, "Action Figure"
Left Front Tire, 42 Ways To Lose A Friend, "This Glass I Raise"
Llama Farmers, Dead Letter Chorus, "Jessica"
Letters To Cleo, Wholesale Meats And Fish, "Pizza Cutter"
Shampoo, We Are Shampoo, "Glimmer Globe"
Llama Farmers, El Toppo, "You Bore Me"
Sister Soleil, Soularium, "Red"
Flight 16, Flight 16, "It’s A Shame"
And then, the spontaneous playlist for Mid-Day Mind Control... We recycled a couple of "dollar bin" CDs to get the show going and then I sent Laura to the "new Canadian content" drawers to randomly pull some albums (CDs) to throw on (sometimes with seconds to spare before pressing play, it was pretty chaotic, but she rose to the challenge with humour and style). Well, things were going pretty well, until... Paddy Ryan... omfg... go to the CBC Radio 3 artist page for Paddy Ryan and play the song "Knock Me Down"... nsfw (you have been warned, heh). Needless to say, I didn't make it all the way through that song before fading and announcing that "it was a bit much". Yes, the dangers of very live radio! The next bunch of songs, randomly chosen, were absolutely awesome... I was particularly thrilled with Quartered's "Life And Light In The Form Of You", which Laura informed me (and the listeners) was a form of music called "Screemo". Awesome stuff!
Sister Soleil, Soularium, "Hit Me"
Science Park, Disinformation, "MBTA"
A Minute Away, '84, "From The Truth"
Left Front Tire, 42 To Lose A Friend, "Mental Vacation"
Paddy Ryan, Chain Link Fence, "Knock Me Down"
The Vital Side, Doppelganger, "Sink The Sky"
Le Husky, La Fuite, "La Maison Hantée"
Quartered, Walks Like A Ghost, "Life And Light In The Form Of You"
Ghostkeeper, Ghostkeeper, "Tea and Cree Talking"
High Watt Electrocutions, Desert Opuses, "Light At The Speed Of Sound"
Flight 16, Flight 16, "If All The World Hated Me"
Now, after all that, I need to go back and defend Paddy Ryan somewhat and actually highly recommend his album. I went looking for the lyrics to "the song" so I could share them with a friend and lol, but found the whole album on the CBC's web site for indie Canadian artists. It turns out that the song Laura randomly chose off a random album was the exception on the entire thing (just our luck, eh? hahaha). The rest of the album is actually some of the best new "prog rock" I've heard! The stuff sounds like early Genesis, Styx, and Max Webster. His vocals are his weak suit, but the compositions are mind-blowingly awesome! Oh, he recorded the album in his home studio and he performed all vocals, electric and acoustic guitars, bass, piano, organ, synths, flute, and tenor sax. Brilliant stuff!!! If you'd like to have a good intro, just click on the link above and play the song "Rise". Wow!

Hmmmm... guess I'll leave you with a video from this show's spotlight artist, The Echoing Green. The video is a fan "AMV" featuring clips from Final Fantasy movies, games, and ... The Passion of Christ? ... but it is mostly pretty animation/eye candy. P.S. If you have never seen the movie Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, you have missed some of the most stunning animation ever done. Even if the story makes no sense whatsoever, it's done with such style and beauty that it's a "must see"!

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Here's the playlist for my fourth show (Jan. 17th, 2011)... which also turned into a spontaneous back-to-back (2 hour long) show because the next host didn't show up again. As a reminder, my show is broadcast live and prone to error every second Monday from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
Kinda went techno on this show even if that did include fiddles in place of synths doing covers of The Grid tunes. Jumped a little back to pop in places to dust off the palate and played some gorgeous Sloan Wainwright just to keep folks off balance.
This show, I did a spotlight on Andrea Parker. Not to be confused with the actress of the same name, this is the dark/deep electro-trance DJ from England, and her groundbreaking 1999 album Kiss My Arp. Kiss My Arp was meticulously stitched together at longtime studio compatriot David Morlay's studio, a world away from her London home, deep in the Bavarian countryside over the course of four years, and one of my prize finds in the dollar bins. I played two tracks to start. The second harkened back to the previous show: "Acoustic Frontiers" in that it’s composed with a particular found sound, thus it’s title "Sneeze".

Sneeze was the first track Andrea recorded for the album. In addition to the electronics in her music, she uses found audio, like the sound samples that form the backbone of "Sneeze". That's actually her sneezing, she says, chopped up into a four-bar loop. She says she took an approach like the Art Of Noise used to take; just finding as many mad sounds as you can possibly find and sticking them together. She remembers going out for the day and leaving her DAT machine recording for 24 hours. Just stuffing tape after tape into it and recording things like the sound of her car tires driving over those reflective cats eyes in the road.

I played one more track called "Return of the Rocking Chair" definitely a dark and emotional piece with vocals reminiscent of Portishead, and if you feel as though you know the musical style that wouldn’t be surprising because it was spectacularly orchestrated by Will Malone — whose strings have graced everything from horror soundtracks to Massive Attack's "Unfinished Symphony", which is where I recognized the sound from. She recently signed to the Aperture label and has released tracks on various compilations. Here’s hoping she does another full-length album sometime soon.

And here's the playlist for The Dollar Bin:
Charm Farm, Pervert, "Superstar"
BKS f. Ashley MacIsaac, Astroplane, "Swamp Thing"
King Missile, King Missile, "Socks"
Andrea Parker, Kiss My Arp, "Going Nowhere"
Andrea Parker, Kiss My Arp, "Sneeze"
Andrea Parker, Kiss My Arp, "Return of the Rocking Chair"
Romania, Teenbeat 1996 (Sampler, "My Eyes Burn"
Atomic Babies, Breuklen Heightz, "Catch Da Donkey"
Sloan Wainwright, Cool Morning, "Ready or Not"
Transister, Transister, "Head"
Blast Off Country Style, Teenbeat 1996 (Sampler), "Bedtime Bandit"
And the spontaneous playlist for Mid-Day Mind Control:
BKS, Astroplane, "Astroplane"
Anthony Marinelli, f. Ozomatli, Herb Alpert Re-Whipped, "Love Potion #9"
Transister, Transister, "Look Who's Perfect Now"
Mocean Worker, Herb Alpert Re-Whipped, "Bittersweet Samba"
Transister, Transister, "Dizzy Moon"
John King (Dust Brothers), Herb Alpert Re-Whipped, "A Taste of Honey"
The Hunger/Robotiko Rejecto, Cinematic Superthug/Robotiko Part 2, "Shock/Injection (live mashup)"
Hole, Tank Girl Soundtrack, "Drown Soda"
Knive Eight, Inconvalescent, "Pop Song '09"
Knive Eight, Inconvalescent, "La Ville Ou J'Habite"
The Rabid Whole, Autraumaton Remixed, "The Strings Inside (Psykkle Mix)"
Pomplamoose, Videosongs, "Telephone"
Pomplamoose, Videosongs, "Expiration Date"
Had lots of fun playing all sorts of whacky stuff I had, as well as stuff I randomly pulled out of the "New Canadian Content" shelves of CKCU's music library. I particularly liked Knive Eight if you get a chance to listen to him.

And here's the original version of "Swamp Thing" by The Grid... doesn't sound like the Ashley MacIsaac, but it's still pretty good ;).

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Here's the playlist for my third show (Jan. 3rd, 2011). As a reminder, it's broadcast every second Monday from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I wrote:
Not too much of a specific theme, but a preponderance of all woman bands and atypical instrumentation in a bunch of the tracks. Also tried to wander all over the musical map (bluegrass, trip hop jazz, electronica, rock, art-punk, and transcendent kitch).
Opened with one of my favourite bands of all time. Only one album, and very much a shame... Splendora is an all-female post-grunge/alternative rock band, most notable for performing the theme to MTV's hit cartoon show Daria, "You're Standing on My Neck". The lineup consisted of Janet Wygal (vocals, guitar), Tricia Wygal (vocals, bass), Delissa Santos (drums), Cindy Brolsma (cello) and Jennifer Richardson (violin). All female vocals and cellos... I'm in love!!! I jammed a couple of times with a woman from the US who played the cello, amongst other instruments... gulp, let's just say that my reaction was strong and positive (and shocked the heck out of me... who knew)!

And here's the actual playlist:
Splendora, In The Grass, "Pollyanna"
Cygnus X, Hypermetrical, "Hypermetrical"
Another Engine, Astromagnetic, "Chemagrin"
That Dog, Buy-Product (Compilation), "Silently"
Zen Frisbee, Good Enough! 35,000,000BC, "Truckstop Girl"
Shampoo, We Are Shampoo, "Game Boy"
Zen Frisbee, I'm As Mad As Faust, "Moss"
Magnapop, Rubbing Doesn't Help, "Open The Door"
Rest Area, Café Méllies (Vol. 1), "Rolling"
Pitchblende, Au Jus, "X's For Is"
The Ambush, Harthouse: Dark Hearts (Compilation), "Casablanca"
But wait... where's the host for the 3PM show? Ummm... ummm... the show must go on... keep playing music! Argh!!! But at least I didn't have to play by the "Dollar Bin" rules and could play anything I wanted :).
Cygnus X, Hypermetrical, "Synchronism"
Spicelab, Harthouse: Dark Hearts (Compilation), "Quicksand"
Khameleon808, N/A, "The Apple Tree - A Tribute To The Glitch Mob"
Dirty Vegas, Dirty Vegas, "I Should Know"
Dirty Vegas, Dirty Vegas, "Ghosts"
During the Khameleon808 track, I had to find the station manager and tell him I had to go to a meeting at 3:30PM and needed to leave. He took over at that point and that was the end of my "extended show"...

And there ya have it. I leave you with some splendid Splendora:

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Here's the playlist for my second show (Dec. 20th, 2010). As a reminder, it's broadcast every second Monday from 2PM to 3PM (Eastern Time) on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming audio on You can always go here to find out when the next show will be (or read my playlists). Of this show, I simply wrote:
From garage to spaghetti westerns to Poland, all manner of glorious finds can be had in The Dollar Bin.
I did a spotlight on one of my favourite finds ever from a dollar bin: Dr. No. From my “show notes” to myself (ganked from various web sites):
Spotlight on one of the great surprises I’ve had in recent dollar bin dives. I picked up the album because it had a picture of a woman flinging her dreads on the cover and it was from Sony Music Entertainment “Polska”. Always on the lookout for the new and interesting, I thought I’d give it a try. Wow, I seriously love this band. We’ll start out with two tracks, “I Will” and “Light”... really interesting instrumentation and lyrics... They did release a video for “Light” if you’d like to see the face behind the voice (there’s also one for a song I’ll be playing later, “Zanim”).

Dr. No was formed by Marcin Orlowski (bass, keyboards, samples) and Michal Orzel (keyboards, samples) at the end of 1999. People got to know the band thanks to popular youth radio station called “Radiostacja” and it’s music festival Pepsi Faza. Two of the early Dr. No tracks “Funky fashion, funky beats” and “70's” were placed on Pepsi faza compilations. At that time Marcin and Michal cooperated with vocalist Wit Dziki.

In 2003 U-zek, owner of Sissy Secords (BMG sub-label) invites Dr. No to take part in his new compilation called “Projekt Si 031” where the band gets the chance to introduce a brand new track “Dziesiatka/Free me” recorded together with a new vocalist Karolina Kozak. The track is picked to be the first single to promote the whole album. Thanks to that, Dr. No shoots the first video. At the same time Karolina joins the band and all three start to work on the debut album with producer Bogdan Kondracki.

Dr. No debut album called “Almost done” is released on 9th of August 2004. It contains music based on swaying rhythms and spacy sounds enhanced with Karolina’s melodical, warm voices. Apart form typical electronic sounds one can find live instruments such as acoustic guitar, violin or trumpet. The whole material might be described as music alternative to pop. Ms. Kozak does appear to have gone on to do bunches of solo work and this does appear to be only album released so far (although they’ve done a couple of singles and contributions to compilations). Here’s hoping they do something new.

And how about something from them in Polish, just to show they’re the real deal and can do this in multiple languages too? Going to follow that up with another track with a harder edged, more electronica sound to it... but still with Kozak's distinctive vocals through it all.
My “Fromage” set featured one of my favourite composers, but these ones stand out because they're so odd:
From the master of the Italian western soundtrack, Morricone himself... the guy who brought us the sublime theme for “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly” (which still gives me goosebumps to this day). Off of the soundtrack Il Ritorno Di Ringo (The Return of Ringo). Sung by Maurizio Graf (there must have been some sort of graft getting him on there). There’s tons of good music on this compilation, but there’s more than one that left me wondering what the heck he was thinking.

Off the We’ll Be Back, Isn’t That Fate? Title track. Don’t know why, but it has a sort-of Japanese feel to it. It makes me smile and raise my eyebrow at the same time... which is fine unless you have a headache, in which case it hurts. But maybe one shouldn’t listen to that sort of thing with a headache... just sayin’...
And here's the playlist (I'll toss up the audio sometime in the next few weeks):
1000 Mona Lisas, New Disease, "Maybe It's All Forgiven"
1000 Mona Lisas, New Disease, "New Disease"
Bonesugar, Human Cattle For The Greys, "Pleiadian"
Ashley MacIsaac, Hi(tm), How Are You Doing?, "Brenda Stubbert"
Crash Vegas, Red Earth, "Moving Too Fast"
Plague of Ethyls, Starball Contributions (Compilation), "Warped And Twisted"
Ennio Morricone, Spaghetti Western, "Il Ritorno Di Ringo (The Return Of Ringo)"
Ennio Morricone, Spaghetti Western, "Ci Risiamo, Vero Provvidenza (We'll Be Back, Isn't That Fate?)"
Dr. No, Almost Done, "I Will"
Dr. No, Almost Done, "Light"
Dr. No, Almost Done, "Zanim"
Dr. No, Almost Done, "Think"
Nelly Furtado, Whoa. Nelly!, "Legend"
Llama Farmers, Dead Letter Chorus, "PVC"
And there ya have it. I leave you with some Dr. No:

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On December 14th, I did a fill-in show for eV's Underground: "Melodic metal, goth, hard rock, and more. Home of the Creepysweet - 5 hours of sonic seduction." This is a weekly show that runs from 2AM to 7AM on Tuesdays. The host was under the weather and she was looking for people to help out by taking shifts. As always, I thought I would have wrapped up everything I needed to wrap up by the time the show rolled out, but that just didn't seem to be the way anything worked out this fall :(. Either way, it was an honour to be asked (her show has something of a following, esp. with late night DJs and bands looking to fill their ears with something interesting after they're done playing), and quite the challenge — five hours is a lot of time to fill! In the end, I went in with a few well defined sets, a couple if ideas on anchors for other sets, and then had to "wing it" from there. Overall, I was quite pleased with how it turned out, and some bits were quite good (special thanks to kallisti for keeping me company, joining in, providing the Men Without Hats and Ministry's "Jesus Built My Hotrod" for me to play on the show, and selecting the Hawkwind/Prong/Blondie vs. The Doors set).

I opened the whole thing off with a reading from a particular XKCD comic that I keep pinned to the wall of my kitchen:
When did we forget our dreams?

The infinite possibilities each day holds should stagger the mind. The sheer number of experiences I could have is uncountable, breathtaking, and I'm sitting here refreshing my inbox. We live trapped in loops, reliving a few days over and over, and we envision only a handful of paths laid out ahead of us. We see the same things each day, we respond the same way, we think the same thoughts, each day a slight variation on the last, every moment smoothly following the gentle curves of societal norms. We act like if we just get through today, tomorrow our dreams will come back to us.

And no, I don't have all the answers. I don't know how to jolt myself into seeing what each moment could become. But I do know one thing: the solution doesn't involve watering down my every little idea and creative impulse for the sake of someday easing my fit into a mold. It doesn't involve tempering my life to better fit someone's expectations. It doesn't involve constantly holding back for fear of shaking things up.

This is important… so I want to say it as clearly as I can:

The summary I wrote for the show's playlist page was: "Everything from XKCD (strip #137) spoken word to Voivod, Ministry, and chill ambient. Spotlight on the band The Hunger". One interesting thing that I did was a "live mashup" (first time I've even tried anything like that) of two pieces of music and I thought it worked out pretty frickin' well if I do say so myself. The two pieces I mixed were The Hunger's "Shock" and an unlikely pairing (through a happy accident as I was listening to stuff for the show) with Robotiko Rejekto's "Injection". You can try yourself if you want, lol: start with the Robotiko Rejekto, then play the Hunger track (with volume a bit lower) a few seconds in (right after the first "crash"), and repeat the Hunger track when it's over and fade it shortly after the Robotiko Rejekto track is done... note, it might take some effort to sync the tracks just right, just click pause/play really quick. Here is the playlist:
Emily Haines, Knives Don't Have Your Back, "Crowd Surfing Off A Cliff"
Men Without Hats, Folk Of The 80's (Part III), "I Sing Last/Not For Tears"
Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark, Architecture & Morality, "Maid Of Orleans"
Telanas, Death Metal Rooster EP, "Death Metal Rooster"
Ministry, The Matrix (Soundtrack), "Bad Blood"
Whale, We Care, "Pay For Me"
Gnawing, Gnawing EP, "Kashow"
Eisenfunk, 8-Bit, "Pong"
Sister Soleil, Soularium, "Hit Me"
Omodaka, Unknown (Japan), "Kyoteizinc"
Narc, This Is What We Do!!!, "555-1212"
The Clay People, The Clay People, "Awake"
Voivod, The Best of Voivod, "Korgul the Exterminator"
TV On The Radio, The Apple Tree (video), "Red Dress (Glitch Mob Remix)"
Evil Nine, The Apple Tree (video), "All The Cash (Glitch Mob Remix)"
Nalepa, The Apple Tree (video), "Monday"
edIT, The Apple Tree (video), "Chunk de Gaulle (Instrumental)"
Boreta, The Apple Tree (video), "Bubblin' In The Cut"
Iszoloscope, Beyond Within, "Raudivian Device (Ah Cama-Sotz Remix)"
Crash Test Dummies, Give Yourself A Hand, "A Little Something"
Tubeway Army, Replicas, "Are 'Friends' Electric?"
Foo Fighters, Songs In The Key of X, "Down In The Park"
Sub.bionic, You I Luv, "Hush"
Exploring Inner Space (X.I.S.), Voodoo Roux Deux, "Sun Walker"
The Hunger, Demo, "Leave Me Alone"
The Hunger, Leave Me Alone, "Cut The Skin"
The Hunger, Devil Thumbs A Ride, "Vanishing Cream (live)"
The Hunger, Finding Who We Are, "So Lost"
The Hunger/Robotiko Rejecto, Cinematic Superthug/Robotiko Part 2, "Shock/Injection (live mashup)"
Hawkwind, DOREMI FASOL LATIDO, "Brainstorm"
Prong f. Ray Manzarek, Strange Days Soundtrack, "Strange Days"
Blondie vs. The Doors, N/A, "Riders vs. Rapture"
Yello, One Second, "Goldrush"
X, X-Files: The Album, "Crystal Ship"
Kevin Arsenault, King For An Hour, "The End"
Art of Noise, The Seduction of Claude Debussy, "The Holy Egoism of Genius"
Tomas Dvorak, Machinarium Soundtrack, "By The Wall"
Tomas Dvorak, Machinarium Soundtrack, "Clockwise Operetta"
Stendeck, Faces, "The Day I Saw You Cry For The First Time"
Stendeck, Faces, "Beneath Wonderlands"
Stendeck, Faces, "Like Falling Crystals"
Qntal, Impudent Simian, "Ludus (Tin Ape Remix)"
Whale, We Care, "Hobo Humpin' Slobo Bitch"
Green Jelly, 333, "Orange Krunch"
Ministry, EP, "Jesus Built My Hotrod (Redline/Whiteline Version)"
Rod Zombie and Alice Cooper, Songs In The Key Of X, "Hands Of Death (Burn Baby Burn)"
The Clay People, The Iron Icon, "Pale God"
Sister Soleil, Soularium, "Torch"
Crash Test Dummies, Give Yourself A Hand, "Keep A Lid On Things"
U.N.K.L.E. f. Moby, Self Defence, "In A State/God Moving Over The Face Of The Waters"
The show also featured the radio debut of Canadian artist Kevin Arsenault's cover of "The End" (produced by kallisti), and just 'cause he was showing off his talents, I couldn't help but slip a remix that I had done a while back for Qntal's track "Ludus" (which can be heard on under my "band" name of Tin Ape).

And I will leave you with a video for one of the tracks that I played... I consider this one of the hottest (and likely scariest) videos ever made. Cia Berg is terrifying and sexy (she does a too convincing job methinks). I actually like quite a bit of what Whale did, way back when:

P.S. It's not on the official playlist, but I slipped this in there as well, lmao: Looking For A House in Barrhaven (a cautionary tale... you just need to type Barrhaven into YouTube to find this, fyi). P.S. Suburbs make my skin crawl... ;)
pheloniusfriar: (Default)
Here's the playlist from my inaugural show of "The Dollar Bin". It will be broadcast live every second Monday (starting December 6th) from 2PM to 3PM on 93.1FM in Ottawa or streaming at on the Internet. You can always get this and other playlists from the program entry on the CKCU web site (mentioned above). From the short description I wrote:
I’m here to bring you my latest and greatest finds from diving in the dollar bins at record shops from here to the Florida panhandle and everything in between. I'll play music from hardcore to folk, ambient to noise, from high falutin' to gutter trash, profound to moronic, fast and slow, from here and from there. The rules are simple: it’s gotta be for sale in a retail store I walk into, it’s gotta be $3 or less but it can't be free (and it can't be given/sold to me specifically to play, it has to be a random find on my part), and it doesn’t make it to the air on this show unless it stands out from the crowd. A little edgy, a little unique, and a little fun!

Feel free to call for requests, but since I only come to the show girded for airplay with a bagful of the random stuff I've found, I usually won't be able to play specific bands or songs (unless you've heard it on the show before, and even then only if I happen to have it on me) — but what I can do is head in the direction of a musical style or maybe spin it on the following show if I can't wedge it into the mix right away. Feedback is always welcome, and you can reach me at
Of this particular show I wrote:
All the albums I played on this show were picked up in record stores in Charlotte or Winston-Salem (wonder what they make there?), North Carolina. The show had a mini-spotlight on the electro-bugglegum band Hyperbubble. Promise there'll be more "can con" in coming shows!
And here's the playlist (Note: if you want copies of the audio after the fact, send me a private message here or at the email address I give in the show description):
Magnapop, Rubbing Doesn't Help, "Come On Inside"
Gloritone, Cup Runneth Over, "Halfway"
Groovenics, Groovenics, "She's A Freak"
Earatik Statik, Feelin' Earatik, "Smile Poem (f. Denise Ruiz)"
Elastica, Elastica, "Waking Up"
Monostar, The Airport, "Under Disco Lights"
Flight 16, Flight 16, "It's A Shame"
Vallejo, Vallejo, "Boogieman"
Matt Malloy, Pyloric Waves, "Traffic Lights Cause Accidents"
Hyperbubble, Airbrushed Alibis, "Rollerboogie Babydoll"
Hyperbubble, Airbrushed Alibis, "Non-Biodegradable Hazardous Waste Disposal"
Letters To Cleo, Wholesale Meats and Fish, "Demon Rock"
Toxic Popsicle, Pyloric Waves, "American Dream"
Mad At Gravity, Resonance, "Burn"
All in all, I fell flat on my face a couple of times, but was pleased with the fact I was able to stumble back onto my feet fairly well and keep moving. Could have been better, but could have been a lot worse! I am actually looking forward to my next show and have started sifting through the debris for more valuables to put on the air :).

P.S. Did I mention they gave me a mofo radio show?!?!?! OMGWTF!!! :)

Okay... back to work (just got up after pulling an "all nighter" to finish an assignment)! Studying for exams: a 4th year CompSci course on parallel programming (multi-core CPU, networked computing clusters, and GPU chips) tomorrow at 9AM (14 hours away as I post), and my 2nd year physics on special relativity and intro to quantum physics Friday at 2PM (43 hours away). And no, I'm not prepared properly for either XP.

Stereo serenades your mind with Candy Apple Daydreams (swoon... electro-bubblegum pop... my guilty pleasure). Mmmmm...

pheloniusfriar: (Default)
Did another fill-in show on CKCU. This time, a Monday from 9PM to 11PM... a little more civilized :). Filling in for "Joe Reilly". From the show description: A little bit of everything can be heard on Mondays from 9-11 p.m. From global rhythms to rockin' anthems and from subtle ambient tones to righteous rap and everything in between. It's all part of the Monday night mix. Come along for the ride and see where we end up!. Figured I could handle that no problem ;). So... here's the playlist for that show. Unfortunately, they've been farting around with the systems in the studio and the recording computer didn't seem to be connected to the mixing board anymore, so if you didn't hear it, it's likely gone forever.

Claude Chalhoub, Planet Buzz, "Don't Wake Me Up"
Dido, No Angel, "My Lover's Gone"
Dr. No, Almost Done, "Light"
Robbie Williams, The Ego Has Landed, "Millennium"
Robbie Williams feat. Kylie Minogue, Sing When You're Winning, "Kids"
Stella Soleil, Dirty Little Secret, "Kiss Kiss"
Tom Jones feat. Divine Comedy, Reload, "All Mine"
Transister, Transister, "Look Who's Perfect Now"
Tori Amos, Crucify [EP], "Crucify"
Sarah McLachlan, Fumbling Towards Ecstasy, "Good Enough"
Neil Young, Harvest Moon, "You And Me"
Tori Amos, Crucify [EP], "Thank You"
Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton, Knives Don't Have Your Back, "Crowd Surf Off A Cliff"
Miguel Graça and Stéphane Cocke, Cafe Méliies (Vol. 1), "New Reality"
Arpeggiators, Harthouse: Dedicated To The Omen, "X-Plain The Un-X-Plained"
The Rudy Schwartz Project, Delicious Ass Frenzy, "Invasion of the Chrome Fish People"
Harry Gregson-Williams, Spy Game Soundtrack, "Operation Dinner Out"
D.O.A., Talk-Action=0, "They Hate Punk Rock"
Buckfast Superbee, One and A Half Stars, "Mutant Pet From Mexico"
Captured! By Robots, Get Fit With Captured! By Robots, "Rock Hard"
Vangelis, Blade Runner Soundtrack, "Main Titles"
U.N.K.L.E. feat. Moby, Self Defence, "In A State/God Moving Over The Face Of The Waters"
Sister Soleil, Soularium, "Red"
Rage Against The Machine, The Battle of Los Angeles, "Calm Like A Bomb"

There's a very serious series of labour disputes (and disputes with the student governments) at Carleton University and I played a bunch of PSAs related to it (not in favour of the university's position, fyi) and was very pleased with how "Calm Like A Bomb" finished the show off so well:

There's a mass without roofs
There's a prison to fill
There's a countrys soul that reads post no bills
There's a strike and a line of cops outside of the mill
There's a right to obey
And a right to kill!

It was a good segue into the next show: "Meltdown" ("Ottawa's longest-running heavy metal radio show delivers every Monday night at 11:00 a wide range of heavy metal for its listeners. Thrash, death, black, speed, traditional, doom, grind, NWOBHM - if it's metal, we'll play it.").

One pleasant surprise is after I'd played Tori and Sarah, I got a call from someone saying if I was playing them, that I might consider his request for "Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton". Wow, what a gem!!! I knew I'd heard the name, but only from her work with Metric and and some collaborations she's done (with the likes of Broken Social Scene, Delerium, and The Crystal Method). Again, I'll be searching out her stuff going forward... and I leave you with the song that I played (it's just the music):

So beautiful!!!
pheloniusfriar: (Default)
Here's the playlists from the two shows I did "fill in" for "The Mixtape" on CKCU FM, a bi-weekly show Monday/Tuesday overnight (midnight to 2AM Tuesday... it's offically listed as "Monday overnight"). I'm very happy with some of my mixes and got calls on my first show asking about Iszoloscope and Galactic (not bad for a first "from scratch" solo gig, I had no template). I got one pledge for the second show (it was during the funding drive), heh, but no calls about the music.

Artist, Album Name, "Song Name"

Iszoloscope, Beyond Within, "The Sum Of Us All (Esa Remix)"
Ministry, The Matrix Soundtrack, "Bad Blood"
Clay People, The Iron Icon, "Pale God"
Nash The Slash, In-A-Gadda-Da-Nash, "Astronomy Domine"
Ad·Ver·Sary, A Bright Cut Across The Sky, "Exit (Sartre Wasn't Kidding Remix by Candle Nine)"
Neckrosis, Demo, "Bloody Saw"
Stendeck, Faces, "The Day I Saw You Cry For The First Time"
Stendeck, Faces, "Beneath Wonderland's Decay"
Stendeck, Faces, "Like Falling Crystals"
Evelyn Evelyn, Evelyn Evelyn, "The Tragic Events of September, Part I"
Good Charlotte, The Chronicles Of Life And Death, "Once Upon A Time: The Battle Of Life And Death"
Rage Against The Machine, The Matrix Soundtrack, "Wake Up"
Earatik Statik, Feelin' Earatik, "Smile poem feat. Denise Ruiz"
Earatik Statik, Feelin' Earatik, "Smile feat. Zulu"
Galactic, Vintage Reserve, "Quiet Please"
Morcheeba, The Antidote, "Antidote"
Money Mark, Push The Button, "Push The Button"
Dirty Vegas, Dirty Vegas, "Candles"
Dirty Vegas, Dirty Vegas, "All Or Nothing"
Dr. No, Almost Done, "Think"
Enigma, Enigma 2: The Cross Of Change, "Age Of Loneliness (Carly's Song)"
Delirium, Euphoric, "Decade"
Fatal Flying Guilloteens, I Hate It Here, I Never Want To Leave, "Cobra Pills"

Artist, Album Name, "Song Name"

Flight 16, Flight 16, "If All The World Hated Me"
Front Line Assembly, Epitaph, "Krank It Up"
The Clay People, The Clay People, "Awake"
Hed Pe, Agroactive Tuneup No 7, "Serpent Boy (Remix)"
Captured! By Robots, The Ten Commandments, "Nefritiri Sex Jam"
Pomplamoose, The Covers, "Beat It (Michael Jackson)"
Snagglepuss, The Country Club Sessions, "Action Figure"
The Ting Tings, We Started Nothing, "Shut Up And Let Me Go"
Soundgarden, Down On The Upside, "Burden In My Hand"
Max Webster, The Best Of..., "Battle Scar"
Herbie Hancock, The Best Of (The Hits!), "Rockit!"
William Shatner, Has Been, "It Hasn't Happened Yet"
Chumbawamba, Readymade, "Sewing Up Crap"
Sarah McLachlan, Fumbling Towards Ecstasy, "Fear"
Robert Fripp, Exposure, "Water Music I"
Robert Fripp, Exposure, "Here Comes The Flood"
Moby, 18, "Great Escape"
Sister Soleil, Soularium, "Hit Me"
Kate Bush, The Dreaming, "Get Out Of My House"
Plastic Bertrand, Tout Petit La Planete (EP), "Tout Petit La Planète"
Foo Fighters, Songs In The Key of X, "Down In The Park (Gary Numan)"
Nash The Slash, And You Thought You Were Normal, "Vincen't Crows"
Holy Fuck, Latin, "Red Lights"
Dead Roses, I Hate It Here, I Never Want To Leave, "I Death You To Death"
NARC, This Is What We Do!!!, "555-1212"
Kidneythieves, Agroactive Tuneup Number 7, "S+M (A Love Song)"

Since I played Money Mark on the show, I figure it'd be appropriate to share one of my favourite songs of all time (by Money Mark, surprise). It's called "Information Contraband" and has one of the coolest videos I've ever seen. The graphic arts direction in it is revolutionary (it's from 2001 and precedes several videos that use the same techniques that people might be more familiar with). Sadly, the only copy I can find on the 'net is small and too dark... but it's worth it for the glimpse and for the music. Hopefully I can find a proper version of it for my collection some day!


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