What’s In Your Fridge is where the Straight asks interesting Vancouverites about their life-changing concerts, favourite albums, and, most importantly, what’s sitting beside the Heinz Ketchup in their custom-made Big Chill Retropolitan 20.6 cubic-foot refrigerators.
On the grill
Who are you
A reclusive art-rock weirdo from the Gulf Islands with a penchant for glam, tape hiss, and lipstick. I just released my debut single “Nobody’s Home” (on Paper Bag Records), and have a full LP due later this year. Catch me live at the Rickshaw Theatre on Friday (July 13) for their 9th anniversary party.
When I was 8, my piano teacher named George moonlighted in a jazz trio and I went with my grandmother to one of his concerts. He taught piano in the rented basement suite of a church, which smelled like mothballs and rain damage. He had perfect pitch and spent most of the lessons coaching me from a kitchen table completely out of sight, presumably smoking weed amongst his harem of cats. There were pictures and news-clippings taped to the walls from decades prior—showcasing George’s greatness. Unfortunately, my 8-year-old self found the jazz concert to be boring and trite. But a lovely teacher he was.
I’ve been completely spoiled in recent years with life-changing concert experiences. The Tupac hologram at Coachella; watching Prince play to a nightclub of 150 people; front row at Fleetwood Mac for their reunion tour. But the life changing concert experience was seeing Pearl Jam in 2003 at (then) GM Place. I bought a sunburst Stratocaster that summer. I started drinking red wine straight from the bottle like Eddie did. I was a puka-shell frosted tip teenage dirtbag, baby. With guitar dreams…
Top three records
Deerhunter Halcyon Digest I don’t remember where I was when I first heard the Beatles, or “Smells Like Teen Spirit”. But I do remember exactly where I was when I heard “Revival” for the first time. Wise man once said, “'Tis better to age like wine, than fruit” and Halcyon Digest is the ’59 Bordeaux of my record collection (or whatever). The slap-echo vocal sounds on this album are colder than a summer spritzer and drive me to varying degrees of technical obsession—even after all these years. I could go on, and on… but alas, I am thirsty.
David Bowie Scary Monsters When I was 18, Jason Corbett (from the band ACTORS) burned me a CD of Scary Monsters. Possibly fearing that I was never going to outgrow my grunge and classic rock obsessions, he told me to pay attention to the guitars on Scary Monsters. From the opening track I was completely blown away. Bowie’s blood-red howl on “It’s No Game”, the spazzy industrial sounds of Robert Fripp, and a random Japanese woman speaking underneath the verses? What the hell am I listening to?! It was a new sound I’d never experienced or heard before. A true work of art from start to finish.
The Horrors Primary Colours I referenced the sound of this record a lot over the last year while I was in the studio. It is a masterpiece of extremes: noise and lush sounds playing off each other, dancing in a haze—beautifully unhinged. At times Primary Colours reminds me a lot of Jesus and the Mary Chain, or Bauhaus—except performed with melodic precision and purpose. Don’t @ me goth boy, go stream it yourself.
All-time favourite video
Fatboy Slim “Praise You” Hands up if you ran home from school in the '90s to watch the MuchMusic countdown? Oh what pure joy, right?! Here’s one that I fondly remember as both odd and original.
What’s in your fridge
The Last Dab (hot sauce). Featured on that celeb-interview show “Hot Ones” where they crush chicken wings in graduating degrees of hot-ness. One must respect the Last Dab, or one will regret their actions. I foolishly ordered two bottles - I was curious ya know? How hot could it actually be? Can confirm: it’s hot. I won’t finish bottle #1 before the ex date, so I’m returning bottle #2 to the nearest military base, for safe disposal.
McLaren’s Imperial Cheddar Spread. This secret red tub of sharp goodness was always lurking in the back of the fridge growing up. It was mysterious, dubious even. One day, I peeled that flimsy plastic lid off and plunged a Stone Wheat Thin straight into the centre of it changing my f**king life forever.
Strub’s Sour Kosher Dill Pickles. Accept no substitutes.
Art d'Ecco headlines the Rickshaw's 9th Anniversary Party on Friday (July 13). The night will also feature Sunbathe, The Intelligence Service, and Cartoon Lizard, as well as an analog liquid light by the legendary Mad Alchemy. For more info, go here.