Opening night screening introduced by Mike Maryniuk, with a special live performance by Rob Crooks.
With an all star cast of Winnipeggers including Rob Crooks, Al Simmons,Washboard Hank Fisher, Mike Olito, James “Pinhead” Miller, Winnipeg mayoral candidate Ed Ackerman, and Maryniuk veterans Rob Vilar and Tim Roth, The Goose is a marvel of inventive storytelling and imagination. Filmmaker magician Mike Maryniuk has conjured up weird visions like you’ve never seen before. The Goose (Rob Crooks) is a mute young man who attempts to regain his voice and escape his oppressive surroundings with the help of the inventive, but behind the times, Travel Agent. The Goose must traverse a gauntlet of miscommunication, small town bravado and his Snowbird weirdos to achieve this goal. He meets a woman known as the Escape Artist (Bea Solsberg) in the hospital and they hatch a loose plot to migrate to Arizona, where The Goose can receive new-age voice therapy and the Escape Artist can escape winter’s clutches.
“Sugar pill” is another way of saying “placebo.” So basically we bit the band Placebo really hard because we’re pathetically uncreative. But that’s the point. We are the uncreative creative. Ask yourself: what is creativity? How can you be “creative” when everything’s already been done? All you can do is appropriate and remix. This is the new creativity. This is the remix culture. Don’t tell us what we can and cannot sample. Don’t tell me what art is, or how art is made. We are doing it right now, making art and getting our hands dirty.
Juts kidding. Fuck that.
Doctors and other medical professionals give patients sugar pills because their sickness is in their head. It’s all made up. You’re not really sick, you’re a faker. I’ll give you this sugar pill and you’ll believe you’re being treated for your non-existent illness. You just need attention, don’t you? You’re just a big baby. Take your pill, baby. Take your sugar pill and grow the fuck up.
I think we all know who the last paragraph was directed towards: Speed Dial 7, Pip Skid and Rob Crooks. Speed Dial 7 is from Kortrijk, Belgium, which is an hour or so outside of Brussels. Speed Dial 7 came to Canada a couple years ago to tour his music around the desolate, empty halls of Canada’s experimental hip-hop scene. He stayed in a hopeless Winnipeg for a couple weeks, drinking vodka and smoking cigarettes with the acclimated Pip Skid and Rob Crooks. Rob had some beats. “Why don’t we write some raps and make an album to these beats? We’ll call it Sugar Pill Gang, because we’re all a little sick in the head.”
Greg Macpherson came by and screamed his pent up aggression into a song. Yy and Gruf got busy with different styles. Dj Co-op rapped a verse about how these kids need to learn about stuff. Speed Dial 7 took all this and made it make as much sense as it ever could:
To all of my friends and fans that have been vocally skeptical about how much I sing on my new shit, here’s something just for you. Argyleis an EP Birdapres and I made full of raps and beats, and it’s all based around the theme of being in high-school. Why high school, you ask? Why is the sky blue? Why is water wet? Why did Judas grab the Romans while Jesus slept? In the simplest terms possible, we went with it, and it worked out. Below is a more detailed description of the album and the creative process behind it. You can read it to find out more.
“For the first time ever Birdapres has teamed up with Rob Crooks to bring you Argyle. Named for both an alternative high school in Winnipeg and the pattern that adorns school uniforms, this eight track EP hearkens back to the days of low-hanging backpacks, mind-numbing classes and juvenile delinquency. Although Bird and Crooks are well beyond their teenage years, they artfully use the theme of high school to express the feelings of alienation and ennui that followed them well into adulthood.
The poetic insight that laid the theme for Argyle came from Birdapres’ observation that most people had a friend or classmate tragically pass away during the months or days surrounding graduation. From that dark inspiration came the pensive “Bus Stop Blues,” a song that developed the overarching concept for this brand new EP. Other songs cover topics such as adolescent drug-use (“High School High”), skipping class to smoke “Cigarettes” (feat. Pip Skid) and the dreaded “Summer School.”
Sonically, Argyle is contrastingly upbeat and fun. Rob Crooks, playing the role of producer in addition to emcee, took records supplied by the walking-vinyl-encyclopedia Birdapres and fed them through his sampler to create beats influenced by Krautrock to Miami Bass. Samples from classic 80s and 90s high-school movies are sprinkled throughout the EP adding a narrative that takes the listener from the first day of school to graduation and beyond.
The final result is a hip-hop album unlike any other, relating the experiences of angst-ridden high-school students to the existential problems facing us as grown-ups today.”
8th of february 2013: Reflex, Kortrijk, Belgium
9th of february 2013: Landbouwbelang, Maastricht, Netherlands
10th of february 2013: Madame Moustache, Brussels, Belgium
11th of february 2013: Le Bateau Ivre, Mons, Belgium