Nine Doors: A journey through language and expression

On Oct. 19 at Western Front, composer, multi-instrumentalist performer and multilingual vocalist Jen Shyu presents her musical and visual narrative Nine Doors. Shyu’s dynamic performance, which centres around the story of loss through the eyes of a six-year-old girl, is communicated through both a multitude of instruments – Taiwanese moon lute, Japanese biwa, piano and several…

Psychedelic sounds of a Japanese rock collaboration

Psychedelic rockers Kikagaku Moyo bring their wavy, kaleidoscopic sound to The Imperial on Oct. 6. Since forming in 2012, the Tokyo-based five-piece band led by drummer and vocalist Go Kurosawa has released three full-length albums, with their 4th upcoming record, Masana Temples, set to release on Oct. 5. Kurosawa became involved in music at a young…

Afrobar: setting the bar high

Hailing from Uganda, Afrobar, a young singer-songwriter with a soulful voice, came to Canada just three years ago. He has already made a splash in the local music scene and made it to one of the top five finalists in the Cumberland Music Festival Artist Challenge this summer and was recently on the radio with…

All about that immigrant bass

Desi Sub Culture performs immigrant bass music. Their South Asian fusion sound mixes Punjabi folk songs with global beats. The name Desi Sub Culture is an homage to the Asian Underground in 1990s UK. It is also related to the fact that they are “Desi’s doing stuff off the beaten path” as Sanjay Seran, the vocalist of the…

The Sakura choir sings the essence of Japanese culture

The Sakura Singers Society will be performing at the 42nd annual Powell Street Festival on Aug. 5. The Sakura Singers’ repertoire covers more than 250 Japanese songs, focusing on folk songs and choral suites, and the choir is always looking for new members to join, seeking to share Japanese culture with those who wish to…

Romani music with an international flair

A group of musicians, with various cultural backgrounds, share their distinct and unique music to a perhaps less aware North American audience. Parno Drom, a band influenced by the Eastern European Romani style of music will be performing at the Heritage Grill in New Westminster on June 19. A musical smorgasbord Parno Drom was formed in…

Justice and equality: sound and song

The Good Noise Vancouver Gospel Choir will be performing Jazz Meets Gospel on June 2 at the Christ Church Cathedral. The choir will explore connections between the two inextricably linked genres in their many forms, with songs made popular by Nina Simone, Duke Ellington, and Louis Armstrong. For former lawyer, social justice advocate, active community…

Music with a message

“We’re kind of like a family band at this point. These people have been in my life musically and personally for a long time,” says Malcolm Aiken, trumpeter and co-founder of Mazacote. Mazacote is performing at the Vancouver World Music Festival on April 26, 2018 at Guilt & Co, GroundUp at 10 p.m.–1 a.m. Who…

Anatolian folk songs revisited

To celebrate the Turkish National Sovereignty and Children’s Day, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the Republic of Turkey and the Turkish Consulate General in Vancouver presents Arpanatolia, the Turkey-based musical, at the Chan Centre Apr. 24. “The Turkish government is inviting children from all around the world, every April 23rd, to celebrate it…

Charting new musical territory

Densabi takes the stage at Visual Space on March 10, bringing their improvisatory blend of traditional Japanese instruments and ambient electronic music. The electro-acoustic musical approach of the trio, composed of Alcvin Ramos, Bernie Arai and Chris Gestrin, centres around the beauty of impermanence and decay. “Each performance is never the same. We never know…

Sound installations, settings, beckon listeners

Sound artist and instrument builder George Rahi and keyboardist and composer Robyn Jacobs will be performing a concert with the installation pulses // patterns at the Western Front on Dec. 14. The installation features a set of rotary speakers connected by a MIDI interface to a wooden pipe organ, reconceiving these separate musical inventions and…

Live music, multimedia performance of cosmological stories

Orchid Ensemble and the Centre for Culture and Technology of UBC Okanagan will be presenting Music of the Heavens, a collaborative fusion of live music and multimedia animated visuals at the Norman Rothstein Theatre in Vancouver on Nov. 23. Lan Tung, founder of Orchid Ensemble, says it took five years for a team of students…

Raucous camaraderie: collectif9 puts their own spin on classical music

On Nov. 12, collectif9, a Montreal-based nine-piece string band, will take the stage at the Kay Meek Centre in West Vancouver to perform their latest acoustic concert entitled VolksMusica. The band has found a performative middle-ground between the intimate and the grand, aiming to share an engaging, entertaining approach to classical music. It has been…