Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Last night the 2010 Polaris Music Prize was awarded to Karkwa for their fourth album Les Chemins De Verre. I haven't personally heard much from this band; only what is available on their CBC Radio3 page. From the Polaris site, the album is described by Philippe Papineau (Le Devoir, Montréal) as:
Killer melodies, intelligent lyrics, and the impression of a group in total communion. This is especially apparent during the hymn Marie Tu Pleures, recorded in one take in a old French manor house. Singer Lous-Jean Cormier usually pushes his gritty voice into the low octaves, but here he dares incursions into the higher range to great emotional effect. Think about Fleet Foxes, Bon Iver, The Beach Boys; even good old Quebec prog music from Harmonium.
I think this was a very strong year for the Polaris Prize; the short list had at least six or seven very strong albums on it. If Karkwa isn't your cup of tea, be sure to check out other bands on the short list, such as: Dan Mangan, Broken Social Scene and/or my pick for the year, the Besnard Lakes.

» Found at: Karkwa's official home page

Friday, September 10, 2010


I'd heard something about this previously, but recently someone linked to a review in The Toronto Star about the newest coffee shop in the Toronto Annex area: Snakes & Lattes.  To quote the article, since I probably couldn't explain this better myself:
Castanie and Peynet moved to Toronto from France four years ago. The idea for the cafe came to them when they were browsing a game shop in Chicago. For the last two years, they have scoured the Internet, Value Village and toy stores to create a collection of 1,500 games, including obscure classics like Fireball Island, and other delights like Mall Madness and Settlers of Catan. For $5, customers have unlimited access to the collection and Castanie’s expertise.
 $5 for access to 1500+ board games? That's pretty awesome in my books. Frankly, I think this is a really excellent idea for a coffee shop. I'm not one much of a 'coffee shop patron', but I'd visit just to see that wall of board games (see photo, above) in person!

What other creative coffee shops are out there that I haven't heard about?  I have previously heard of the Indie Coffee Passport for the Toronto area; anything else?

» Found at: Snakes & Lattes (official website)

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


Adam Sidwell has challenged himself to create a new illustration of a "bad dude" each week in 2010. These range from video game villains to movie baddies to television evil doers. Regardless of where the inspiration comes from, the artwork itself is top notch.

The image above is from Fight Club and, if you've seen the movie, you'll notice subtle clues that connect the two images ... which tells me that the artist doesn't just grab any ol' scoundrel and draw them up; there is some good thought put into each piece.

» Found at: 52 Bad Dudes (Tumblr)

Thursday, September 2, 2010


Sure, these movies might have come out 25-30 years ago, but it doesn't mean someone can't create beautiful art in honour of them. Illustrator Andy Helms has created a trilogy of posters for the original Star Wars trilogy of movies and I think they're just incredible, especially as a series of three posters. As if the artwork itself wasn't enough, he's selected the perfect title for each image:
Each poster is/was available for purchase through the artist's Etsy store (click on the titles above for ordering information and a closer look at each poster).

» Found at: Sparkwood & Twenty-One (LiveJournal)