APRIL — MAY 2016 Issue
  April/May 2016 cover by Sam Neal.


Fear of Music :: This Stephen Patrick is No Morrissey


by Devin King

July 2014 sees the release of Morrissey’s latest and perhaps most Morrissian-titled album to date: World Peace is None of Your Business. Morrissey the Performer has always demanded a closer critical review, as his actions and words – both in his music and outside of the music itself – are a closely scripted characterization of Morrissey the Character. More than ever, with this latest release, there is an evident slipping of the curtain to reveal Morrissey himself rather than Morrissey the Character. This later period Morrissey seems to be, intentionally or not, dropping many of the idiosyncrasies that define the Morrissey character. Continue Reading »

Why Taylor Swift was right to break up with country music


by Matt Williams

For years now, the relationship between Taylor Swift and country music fans has been strained at best. Swift has been on an unstoppable rocket to peak fame and stardom, traveling at light-speed, since the beginning of her career, and until recently, she had at least managed to satiate her country fans, albeit less and less with each album. Red, arguably her best record to date, was almost devoid of anything resembling country, instead trading in the twang for new tricks like dubstep-lite (“I Knew You Were Trouble”) or straight-up bubblegum pop (“22”). But still, until Monday’s release of “Shake It Off,” the kickoff single from Swift’s upcoming “very first documented, official pop album” 1989, many still believed there was a chance for their saviour to come back home, or at least keep things country enough that she could pass for a slot at the CMAs. Continue Reading »

Fear of Music :: Thy Shiny Compilation in the Night


An alternate history of Big Shiny Tunes 2

by Devin King

For a lot of people, Big Shiny Tunes was a big deal. We can say that, if for no other reason, by its sales figures. Big Shiny Tunes 2 is one of the highest selling albums in Canada, ever. Many of my generation have also been privy to nostalgic conversations about that series. This alt-rock compilation has served as a cultural touchstone – a sort of monoculture primer at the time, and defining cultural artifact now. Looking back, it would be easy to remember these songs as the only noteworthy songs of those years. However, Big Shiny Tunes – indeed, our very recollection of that time – could have been dramatically different. Continue Reading »

Hillbilly Highway – Ryan Boldt on the dangers of the Highway, and Winnipeg Folk Fest 2014


by Sheldon Birnie

There’s no secret that Saskatoon’s Deep Dark Woods are a favourite of ours out here on the Highway. As such, we’re very fired up as the Winnipeg Folk Fest starts to creep up on us. I spoke with Ryan Boldt of the DDWs a month or so ago, and if you’ve seen the June/July 2014 issue of Stylus on stands, you may have read our feature. But not everything made it to print, and some of the best stuff was left on the cutting room floor. As I continue to listen to the Deep Dark Woods excellent Jubilee on repeat while I check my camping gear for all its essentials, here’s a bit of our conversation… Continue Reading »

CKUWho :: Trouble With The Sandman


David Tymoshchuck is an integral member of the CKUW radio team. As the musical director and host of Trouble with the Sandman which has been breaking down walls in the overnight radio game since he graced Winnipeg from his hometown just outside of Riverton, Manitoba. Random features the hour of suck, backwards music and the dawn yodeller have become instrumental to Thursday night radio. Continue Reading »

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