Summer is festival season in the music world and YCTV correspondents Shotgun Jimmie, Julianna Riolino, and Nathan Doucet are here to take you behind the scenes, deep into the methods and the magic, into the grind and the glory of Sappyfest in Sackville NB and Hillside Festival in Guelph ON in this brand new episode of our immensely popular and hard hitting journalistic series. The SAPPYFEST & HILLSIDE SPECIAL REPORT features family, flour, festival survival tactics, fear pointing, june like bugs, tick costumes, what are we doing, it is what it is, young lions, strawberry ice cream, secret shows, special guests, all-stars, modulations, sneaky mirrors, impending doom, memories, not remembering, top notch, 100%, and lots of love to Richard Laviolette. Don’t miss it!
Warmongers run the newspapers, the daily podcasts, the social media feeds. Capital creates and harvests our despair. Cultural heroes are as money-mad as bankers, standing on corpses, wearing diamonds. The songs of this age are hopeless. In this world of lies, Spider Bite celebrate truth: raw, ragged, and full of brave energy, bravely dreaming of possible futures in the immediate and active now, in this exact and ever active present: after the flood, in the ruins of love.
Spider Bite is the sound of Daniel Romano (The Outfit, Ancient Shapes, Attack In Black), Ian Romano (Daniel Romano’s Outfit, Career Suicide) and Steven Lambke (Constantines) returning to their roots in the thriving pit of DIY punk with a perspective, skill, and energy that can only be gained from long experience in music, art, and stubborn cultural creation. Spider Bite began in the depths of the first COVID-19 lockdown, a world poised between protests and rebellions, when a fearful silence held its breath, twitching the curtains, and strange imaginations ran unleashed through dark streets. Long-time collaborators Daniel Romano and Steven Lambke, who together established the artist run record label You’ve Changed Records in 2009, and monster drummer Ian Romano chose this moment to indulge their shared love of energetic street punk, releasing the self-titled debut as a Bandcamp-only release in May 2020. The album was enthusiastically embraced and even cracked the best of lists on some of the more adventurous independent music blogs.
But still. Time passes. More wars. More storms. More ruin caused by greed. Spider Bite reconvened in the spring of 2022, recording The Rainbow and The Dove, an album that assembles the wisdom teachings of punk elders into a passionate rejection of settler-colonialism, environmental racism, and the general exploitation of the world by monarchs and resource extraction companies. Every moment is historical. Spider Bite celebrate a continuity of protest and refusal, and the communal joy of loud energy. Animated by a surprising humor and immense instrumental power, Spider Bite create a vibrant portrait of living in violent times.
This is our music.
Spider Bite – The Rainbow And The Dove
Announcing! Volcano Volcano, a brand new record by Steven Lambke will be released on April 29th!
“Volcano Volcano is an invitation, an exploration of potential, an opportunity for listening and thinking and relating that holds space for otherwise thinking and shared meaning-making. The making of this record, from its sonics and aesthetics to its lyrics and composition communicate a vital potential to communally re-order, re-invent and re-connect to something beyond ourselves. This requires something out of the ordinary from both performer and audience. It asks us to think of music and performance in an open and expansive way, beyond the normal separate enclosures wherein the performer turns up the volume demanding to be heard and seen, basking in applause, before selling merch side stage, and then driving away to a sad motel somewhere. It requires us to meet.” Leanne Betasamosake Simpson, from the album text – read the whole thing here.
To preview the upcoming album a two-song single has been released. Every Lover Knows previews the Volcano Volcano album, saluting the great teachers Love and Experience; Deep Water is an exclusive non-album track, a bonus jam for your listening pleasure, today and until the end. Every Lover Knows / Deep Water is available on all streaming platforms and available for download here.
Volcano Volcano features true friends Daniel Romano and David Nardi on drums and bass, and a few special appearances by superstar singer Carson McHone. Guitars are loud and together we sing!
As always, offered with deep thanks and heavy gratitude.
The weather is changing. Rhythms and interactions that had seemed eternal degrade. The realm of the uncertain expands. Uncertainty inspires fear, fear inspires rage. Points of recognition are shifting, points of return becoming rare. The measure of human meaning and dignity has been reduced to discussions of financial gains and losses.
A song can seem a slight thing. Barely there. Unless it is in the midst of being sung or being heard it could be said to exist only in potential or in memory. What is the form of this potential? A balance of words, chords, melody. Balance implies an interaction. The song is the point of balance that is returned to, potential turned into action with intention. In this way the song is the music of ritual. Ritual is the creation of human meaning through repetition.
With Dark Blue, Steven Lambke builds a visceral swirl of narrative images, dense with allusions and invocations, rich with imagery and scene, into a series of creation stories, a document of disruption, a lament for environmental ruin and the destructions of colonialism, and a stubborn evidence of endurance and transcendence. It is a product of this time, a collaborative process between poet and muse, inspiration and scribe, guitar and voice and drum.
The release of Dark Blue marks the 10th anniversary of You’ve Changed Records, the label co-founded in 2009 by Steven Lambke and Daniel Romano. A collaboration yields its own energy. Evocative poetry and guitar work reminiscent of Lambke’s long career with indie legends The Constantines combine with Romano’s multi-instrumental skill and production talents in a music that is sophisticated and immediate, intimate and expansive.
But what act of creation could ever be called complete? The song reacts to the world into which it is sung, and acts on that world. The outcome is never known and the song is not sung the same way twice as everything surrounding it will have changed. The song moves through the world like a rendezvous of atoms.
Begin again. Calling equally to the past and to the future, the song has a double existence as an expression of memory and an expression of hope.
Always ready for a good time and prepared to spread heavy vibes in our wake, You’ve Changed Records traveled to Ottawa, ON on August 17th for the Arboretum Music Festival. Deep in the Hintonburg neighbourhood, Shotgun Jimmie, Partner and Nap Eyes convened at The House Of Common in a spirit of comradery, hilarity, hi-jinks, and a spreading of knowledge. YCTV has the exclusive behind the scenes look: musical excerpts, interviews, insights, and tour stories.