Over the last few days, I was incredibly fortunate to experience an absolute tonne of amazing, spine-tingling, soul-stirring music. It started on Thursday night when, brilliantly, the mighty Arcade Fire came into town! I’d been a bit gutted in the summer when I saw they were playing Canadian spots while I was in the UK, and British spots after I was back in Canada, but a few weeks ago I saw they’d added a stop in Winnipeg. The day tickets went on sale, I put my “do not disturb” sign on my office door, waited for the clock to strike ten, Ctrl+V’d my Visa number into the box… and absolutely rejoiced when we got possibly the best seats in the house! (These turned out to be a bit of a nightmare when we got there and found we were seated behind a selfish cow of a girl who decided she was going to stand up, smoke a joint, and dance by herself for the first three songs, completely blocking everybody’s view, and refused to sit down “because they were her favourite band”. Call me an old lady, but isn’t that why they offer tickets for the floor?) It ended up being all good, as within about 20 minutes the entire stadium were up on their feet, watching the nine-piece ensemble rock two drum sets, fierce violins, xylophones, accordions and mandolins, backed by a giant screen of images reminiscent of the Smashing Pumpkins circa Tonight, Tonight. It was indie, it was beautiful, it was clever, and it was epic. And seeing the gorgeous, 6’4″, half-head-shaved mastermind frontman Win Butler for two hours didn’t hurt either. 🙂
On Friday night, Sweet and I teamed up with a couple of good friends, got all dressed up and headed for opening night at the Symphony. Our friend is a music teacher and a composer, and it was awesome to see SUCH enthusiasm for the intricacies of the music – it was kind of like watching a kid in a very posh candy shop 🙂 The first half was a new composer, whose piece was kind of a bluesy, southern-style symphony complete with duelling violins, which was thoroughly entertaining. Then came Mahler 1, which, through highs, lows, haunting funeral marches and explosions of sound was nothing short of breathtaking. Highlight: the opening of the first movement sounding just like the Star Trek: TNG theme and whispering “Space: The Final Frontier” to ourselves in the seats 🙂 It was amazing to be able to see such incredible talent (and appreciation for it) right in the heart of the city – I’m hoping over the winter we can all go more often.
We had a few errands to run over the weekend too, which resulted in a lot of time in the car. Now, the one thing that makes me want to get that driving licence isn’t the thought of no longer having to wait 40 minutes in the dead of winter in a blizzard for a bus to not show up – it’s the thought of being enclosed in my own little bubble where I could blast whatever music I wanted and sing to my heart’s content with nobody to worry about impressing. Sweet’s really great about letting me take my music in the car, and this weekend I decided on a bit of a blast from the past: Kate Bush. Not my past, obviously – for those unfamiliar with Kate Bush, she was signed up by EMI at the age of sixteen, and topped the charts in 1978 for a month straight with her debut, the stunning Wuthering Heights. She was the first woman ever to have a number one single with a self-written song, and the first female artist EVER to enter the album chart at number one. She even knocked Madonna off the top spot in the eighties. She only ever toured once, in 1979, but has won Grammy awards, BRIT awards, and an Ivor Novello Award for Outstanding Contribution to Music. She is an absolute LEGEND – lyrically amazing, musically genius, dramatic, controversial, and surreal – and her eerie, eclectic voice sends chills down your spine. Sweet let me crank up a Greatest Hits while driving around this weekend, and after hitting repeat on this one about seven times, declared this has to be one of “the best songs ever written”. Late seventies art rock power ballad, literary intellect, ghost stories and haunting vocals – what’s not to love? Crank this one up and dance around in your nightie – Kate didn’t need a meat dress to get the world’s attention. 🙂
sounds like a great couple of days em, i’m jealous you got to see arcade fire!!! and kate bush is amazing, my mom used to play her a lot when i was a kid. love it.
Isn’t she great? 🙂
I’ve never heard of Kate Bush or this song…it makes me think of Lady Gaga from the 70’s/80’s! Sounds like a fun weekend! Chad let me drag him to see Lee Dewyze on Friday night, he’s the guy who won American Idol this year. I love him. I came home with his songs in my head, had to go buy some new ones on iTunes and then listen to them all night and all weekend…I still have them in my head! Music is so much fun!
She was totally the Lady Gaga of the late seventies! Except she didn’t try to be the most talked-about figure in pop music by wearing raw meat lol. She was SO talented… I love her. Your Friday sounds like tonnes of fun! I would love to go see an X Factor winner 🙂
I love how passionate you are about music! Sounds like some great times. LOVE Kate Bush!
Aw thanks 🙂 The concert was great, but Sweet being converted to Kate was almost better!
So glad to hear that you enjoyed the concert. I didn’t make it, but there has been a lot of talk around work. All good.
I am however jealous of your trip to the symphony! 🙂 I love Mahler, and need to thank you for reminding me to try to score some tickets to the RWB’s Dracula. (I highly recommend it and would be surprised if you are not blown away!)
I hope this week is as exciting for you!
Oh I would LOVE to see Dracula! I saw it at MTC a few years ago and all I remember was one of the bats on strings getting caught on his cape and him trying to swoosh it off, but it wouldn’t budge LOL 🙂
I love Kate Bush! Wuthering Heights is one of my mum’s favourites, so I grew up with her.. and Babushka/Running up that Hill are always on my playlists.
So glad you got to see your Arcade Fire gig. 😀
I was a bit disappointed in the “comeback” album she released a few years ago, but the first few albums were absolute classics. I love “Sat in your lap” too – so eighties 🙂
So glad you had such a great weekend Emily! Mine was great as well and I am totally not ready to get back to normal, hehe.
Only a few more weeks and we get a three day weekend! 🙂
Oh, how fun, Em! I am really aching for some good, unforgettable experiences like that! 🙂
Sounds like an awesome couple of days!
Sweet! Sounds like a great week for music! I’ve always wanted to see Arcade Fire live and you absolutely cannot go wrong with the symphony. (c:
Kudos for bringing back the 80’s (or late 70’s if we’re being technical)…Kate Bush is great! (c:
Awww yay! It was definitely a great few days for music, and a little retro revival never hurt anyone 🙂
I am in dire need of going to a concert. I am currently eying “30 Seconds To Mars” upcoming US tour but tickets are not on sale yet. I need my Jared Leto fix. 😉
Oooh I think they just came here, and I am kicking myself for not going!
I’ve never heard of her but of course that’s expected from a deaf person. 🙂 I do wonder if I would enjoy any kind of music concert that isn’t pop rock or rap if I was hearing because obviously I hate watching movies & American Idol that has a lot of singing in it EXCEPT Sound of Music because I can’t tell between good and bad music, lol.
You know I’ve never seen The Sound of Music? (I know, what’s wrong with me :)) I’ve heard it’s all sorts of amazing though
Ahhh i do love me some Kate Bush… and I’ll tell you it is one of my favorite things in the world to sit in my car and blast music. I often just drive around to get some alone time with my ipod.
Also? I’m incredibly jealous that you got to see Arcade Fire. I’ve been wanting to see them for a while and their new album rocks my face off!
The only thing I didn’t like about the concert was that the best thing about the new album is that it works as a WHOLE… and when you start splitting up the songs in between old ones it didn’t quite have the same effect. But all of their albums have been absolutely amazing. Win Butler is SO full of win 🙂
I’ve never heard of Kate Bush until today. Sounds like a great musician!
I really laughed out loud on your i”she didn’t need a meat dress to get the world’s attention” comment. 😀
Well she didn’t! Haha 🙂 She’s AMAZING… I can’t believe she only toured once in her whole career. I would’ve loved to be at one of those concerts.
Love the mix of music for a weekend. And I totally understand the car thing. Driving around listening to music in the car is sometimes the only “me” time I get.
ooo i’m jealous of your amazing music experiences!!! and arcade fire…sigh.
I love Arcade Fire! I missed getting tickets when they came through Vancouver.