Sled Island 2013 Preview: An Ominocity Oddity Odyssey

Our top picks for this weekend’s Sled Island festival madness

Calgary is one hell of a city. Surrounded by a sprawl of pastel houses and every chain store imaginable, the downtown of the city is actually a really interesting place.

In fact, it’s total hipster heaven.

In addition to the musical infrastructure – record shops, venues, etc. – there are also tonnes of places to get cheap late night eats and lots of places to get decently sloshed at a reasonable rate.

The buses are easy to navigate (comparatively anyway) and the streets are typically wide enough to accommodate plenty of bike riding and tour van unloads.

Welcome to Sled Island. We are all going to have one hell of a time.

Ominocity’s Picks for Wednesday

Copenhagen’s Iceage are likely going to draw a massive crowd to the Legion on Wednesday – be warned that you will likely need to show up early for this one. But there’s also scads of other good bands playing that night in the same venue, like The Nymphets and Viet Cong, so if you have to hang out there all night no worries.

Otherwise the rest you will likely be fawning over Swans at Dickens, and with good reason. Make sure to show up early to catch Montreal’s latest buzz-worthy band Valleys. But be warned that all individual tickets are sold out for this show, so come early.

The Palomino is always a good bet, with a couple of Saskatonians thrown in for good measure.
And if you find yourself in the south half of downtown, head over to the Ship & Anchor to catch what will no doubt be a fucking off the chain performance from hardcore punk stalwarts Burning Love, along with openers Code Orange Kids. Geez.

Ominocity’s Picks for Thursday

More Legion goodness with Jon Spencer Blues Explosion headlining. White Lung is headlining at Broken City, which ain’t a big place either – just saying. Off is going to slay everyone at the Commonwealth – again, all individual tickets are sold out for this show, so come early. And if you come early enough you will be able to catch Besnard Lakes.

Mac DeMarco is always a good bet, but he’s also coming to Saskatoon right away. And we just hosted John K. Samson, Ben Caplan and Northcote, who are all playing at Ironwood. I’d probably suggest heading to the Palomino to catch Montreal’s Suuns, who put on a fucking awesome live show. But then you’d be missing out on the ‘90s retro pop worship of Superchunk, who are playing at the Republik.

Similarly, if you head to the Ship & Anchor you’ll get to see the Bitterweed Draw – Calgary’s answer to a mouthful of moonshine – but that’s a pretty lofty commitment to make.

Ominocity’s Picks for Friday

The Legion once again reigns supreme with the Ketamines, White Lung and Metz – there are other chances to see all those bands elsewhere though. Night Marchers, the new project from John Reis who played in groups such as Drive Like Jehu, Rocket from the Crypt and Hot Snakes, is going to be devastating. Everyone in the world has seen Plaskett a million times – why not one more. But I’m way more stoked to see Thee Oh Sees.

The Olympic Plaza is always fun – sit in the grass and casually sip beer? And if you’re up for some shenanigans earlier, make sure to check out Slam Dunk, who have an amazingly fun live show and recently opened for Built to Spill in California. NBD?

And don’t for to head down to Tubby Dog for plenty of awesome Saskatoon musician friends care of our very own community radio station CFCR. Oh yeah, and hot dogs and beer. Duh.

Ominocity’s Picks for Saturday

I honestly can’t remember the last time I saw Whitey Houston, but their afternoon set at Broken City is gonna be so killer. Likewise the entire day at Olympic Plaza – anyone else ready to have their mind’s blown by The Jesus and Mary Chain? The Thermals are likewise a fun addition to the day at Dickens.

Also, there is good stuff all over the place at Palomino. Fun fact: the Palomino is responsible for some of the most gut-busting food in all of Calgary. You would be a complete ninny to not go there at least once. Also, the patio is super happy fun times. Just sayin’. And you can’t go wrong with Montreal punks Trigger Effect headlining.

Click here for the full schedule for Sled Island, Calgary’s premiere music and arts festival which runs from June 19 – 22.

Saskatoon Rules Everything Around Me

This year’s Sled Island line-up is inundated with Saskatoon bands. Which is kind of awesome. Here’s a handy schedule for all of you who want to catch a slice of home away from home:

Friday, June 21 – 10:30PM – Ship & Anchor

Black Magic Pyramid:
Saturday, June 22 – 8:00PM – Palomino

Friday, June 21 – 3:00PM – Tubby Dog

The Deep Dark Woods:
Friday, June 21 – 10:00PM – Flames Central

Saturday, June 22 – 7:00PM – National Music Centre

Foam Lake:
Wednesday, June 19 – 10:30PM – Palomino

The Moas:
Saturday, June 22 – 2:00PM – Palomino

Powder Blue:
Friday, June 21 – 4:00PM – Tubby Dog

The Seahags:
Friday, June 21 – 5:00PM – Tubby Dog

Shooting Guns:
Thursday, June 20 – 2:00PM – CJSW 90.9FM
Friday, June 21 – 12:00PM – Palomino

Slow Down Molasses:
Saturday, June 22 – 1:00PM – Palomino

The Wizards:
Friday, June 21 – 6:00PM – Tubby Dog

Young Benjamins:
Wednesday, June 19 – 11:00PM – Palomino