The night was really, eventful, nevertheless.
Article: Michael Chmielewski – Editor-in-Chief
There’s honestly nothing like it. Jumping in the car, energy drinks and junk food in hand, to road trip to a concert.
Although Saskatoon is by no means a huge voyage from Regina, it’s still fun. My friend and I hit the road, for what was sure to be a sick night of brutal death metal. We’d seen The Black Dahlia Murder before in Regina, and even got to hang out with the band after the show a couple years ago.
They were super cool dudes then, so I thought that it might be possible to get a quick interview sometime during the night. I had been looking forward to the show for quite a while, especially since they released their strongest album to date, entitled Everblack.
Blasting the new album, we headed north. The drive was full of loud metal, and also seeing a certain politician: no road trip is complete without making stupid faces and waving at Cam Broten as you zoom by.
Before we knew it, we were in Stoon, and we headed straight for Louis’ Pub at the University of Saskatoon. I have to admit, I was kind of nervous. TBDM is one of my favourite bands. The venue was initially confusing, because I couldn’t see a door where I could pop my head into to request an interview, as compared to the Exchange or Riddell in Regina. If I had been responsible, I would have contacted the band’s publicity agent to book a time, but I literally couldn’t find the contact info. Plus, I didn’t think it’d be a huge issue.
Soon enough, after stopping at the merchandise stand, then the bar, I saw Brian walking around the venue. I went up to and introduced myself to the founding member and riff master. We shook hands, had the regular introductions, blah blah blah, “new album’s great, saw you in Regina, “ etc. and then I asked if the band had fifteen minutes for an interview.
“Sorry to disappoint you dude, but I don’t think it’s going to happen,” he told me. He probably could have seen the disappointment in my face, but waited for me to answer.
“Well, I’ll check back later, man,” I said. He nodded and told me jokingly “not to get too drunk.” I was already on the way there with a Louis’ “pint” and shot of Jack down. We both laughed and went our separate ways.
So that’s exactly what I did. On my way to hit the bar, I was ID’d by the security again. They had blocked off a little area of the venue where people could drink so that the whole show could be all ages. As I handed my ID over to the guard, I asked him “why don’t you give out armbands to those who want to drink so that you don’t have to ID every time. It’ll make things quicker.”
He looked at me for a while in deep thought. Still holding my ID he finally said, “That’s a pretty good idea! Go on in man.” The ID went in my wallet, and Louis’ took out my money. They actually have a really good beer selection on tap.
A few more in the first band started, and my friend and I headed down to see them. Standing there with about six other people, Noisem started up. Although vocalist Tyler Carnes later disagreed with my classification, the band had a cool sound that felt like a mix of Napalm Death and Sepultura, but what do I know.
Realizing that I probably wouldn’t talk to TBDM, after their set I asked Tyler if he’d be down for an interview. He agreed right away. I told him I’d grab him later, because I suddenly had an idea.
I tried to see if anybody was in the fellow student newspaper the Sheaf’s office, but they had the outer doors closed, so I couldn’t have knocked on their door if I wanted to. I found it quite funny that they were within a stone’s throw of a watering hole that was just beneath them, exactly like the Carillon.
After hanging out with a couple people I knew, I went back to grab Tyler. I signaled that we should go outside so it’s quieter, because by now the next band had already started. But when we got outside, a couple interesting characters came up to Tyler to talk. Although they didn’t realize it, I turned my recorder on while they were chatting. Here’s where it starts, with some random dude saying “sorry I was, like, born a fucking Canadian … and NFL destroys CFL,” to which Tyler replies “Definitely.”
The debate raged on, incoherently at best, until at one point I chimed, loudly, “but it must be interesting to watch three-down football for you guys.”
“No, it’s four downs,” said Carnes to which I replied to the person I’m about to interview, who granted me an interview, “no, in fucking CFL, you idiot.” The Baltimore native went on to reminisce about the Baltimore Stallions. The conversation moved to other subjects, with a heavy amount of spitting in the background, for some reason.
Unlike my interview with TBDM that never happened, I didn’t plan this one out, so it was fun to try and make up questions on the fly. One highlight of the interview was discussing how Tyler wasn’t used to playing on stages, so he jumped on the concert floor with his mic to join the audience. In this way, a lot more people gathered around. He credits this to his punk origins. He started talking about how receptive Canadian crowds were, and the different potentially dangerous cities in Canada.
At this point, a drunk metal head with a heavy slur in his speech starts yelling “Vancouver,” and goes on to make the astute observation that whereas Regina had two murders that week, quote “places like LA, eh, have like 20 a day, fuck.” In sum, that’d be 7300 homicides a year.
Lastly, I asked him probably the most important question. What’s your favourite Canadian beer? He answered with Boréale Blonde, which he claimed was the best beer he’s ever had.
This stands in stark contrast with what TBDM’s roadie told me later, that essentially everything in Canada sucked. I was trying to have a normal conversation with him until finally the disrespct was enough: “how’s Detroit,” his hometown “doing nowadays?”
He asked for it and got it right on the chin.
After the roadie went back in, slightly less proud, the same guard from before came outside. He remembered me.
“Hey! The ideas guy! Do you have a lighter?”
Someone else gave him one, and to my surprise, suddenly he started smoking a joint. Top-notch security, and no wonder my ideas blew his mind of out this world.
A lot more things happened that night, but there’s too many to tell. I didn’t end up getting the interview TBDM like I had hoped. After their set I went up to them and said, lying, “look guys, my boss back in Regina is going to be super pissed that I couldn’t get an interview.” They still couldn’t, but I understood because they were very busy that night. Nevertheless, the band played great as always, including my favourite song, and the night was definitely a memorable one.Image via Shadowgate