Thursday, April 29, 2010

Last Friday Night

Maya Miller and Becky Black are the Pack A.D. An extremely talented rock/blues duo who have been known to spit out chunky soul drenched rock (as well as the occasional Peruvian mountain Llama). I attended the CD release show for their new album "We Kill Computers" at the Biltmore Caberet where it was business as usual as they got bodies a movin' and eardrums a bleedin'! It was one tasty event.

 - The Pack A.D. Biltmore Caberet, 23 April 2010
 - The Pack A.D. Biltmore Caberet, 23 April 2010
 - The Pack A.D. Biltmore Caberet, 23 April 2010
 - The Pack A.D. Biltmore Caberet, 23 April 2010

The End.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Diptych #1

- All-In-One Tape Recorder Book and Rose (Diptych), 2010

The End.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Archive #1

Darcy and Ashley shot in the summer of 2009, Vancouver.

- Darcy, 2009
 - Darcy & Ashley, 2009
 - Ashley, 2009
 - Ashley, 2009
- Narin Falls, 2009

The End.

Sunday, April 11, 2010


The artist baptiste just released his second full length album "The Arcade Summer" to the public earlier this morning. Its available as a free digital download and upon first listen, its very well worth every penny you could have paid for it. I had a chance to speak with my good friend Joshua Scheepers, the man behind this new melodic journey.

- baptise / The Arcade Summer, 2010

- "-" off the album The Arcade Summer by baptiste, 2010

SS: Let's start with your stage name "baptiste" where did it come from? where are you from?
JS:  I got baptiste from the movie Perfume, partly, and I just like the sound of it. I think there may have been something else that made me think of it, but I don't remember any more, I just like the way it sounds. Most of my life has been spent in Empangeni, but I lived in East London for a few years which is where the music making started, its where I started recording.
SS: Tell us a little more about yourself?
JS:  Haha, okay. Well I am 24 years old, technically, and I like to make music mostly with guitars and sometimes with electronic gadgets of the hardware and software variety.
SS: The Arcade Summer is your second album, tell us about your first, The Whiskey EP released in 2007?
JS:  The first one wasn't really planned as such. I had gotten my first electric guitar and I would record and just mess around with learning how that all worked. One of my friends, Mark Schultz and I would just write songs for fun and record them, and then I'd record mostly instrumental stuff by myself as well. After a while I realized I had enough songs done to put them all together as an "album". Then you supplied me with some album artwork and that was that.
SS: What inspired The Arcade Summer? What was your motivation behind the album, if any?
JS:  My inspiration came from a few places. Unemployment for many months, haha, I went through a terrible break up, I got a few new pieces of musical equipment, I also got a new studio mic, I learnt new recording techniques. So basically I had a lot of free time, everything I needed to record, and a whole bunch of emotions I needed to get out in some way.
SS: Can you explain your interpretation of the albums title "The Arcade Summer"?  with track titles like "Moonlit Forrest", "Popcorn Rocket" & "Kongadore" it definitely emotes a sense of mystery and youthfulness, what your take on this?
JS:  Haha, I called it The Arcade Summer because it was mostly recorded in the summer of 2009 and 2010, and during that time I was playing a lot of pure arcade style video games like Donkey Kong and Geometry Wars. Moonlit Forest is named that because I wanted the music to evoke the feeling of walking through a forest at night. The other titles were inspired by my friends in different ways.
SS: How would you describe your music?
JS:  Post rock with a few electronic elements. I was and still am heavily influenced by bands like Explosions in the Sky and This Will Destroy You, who are some of my favourite bands. Usually a song will get made fairly quickly, or at least most of it, and then I'll spend the rest of the time fine tuning everything to work well with each other within the song. I did try on some songs to try a few different things and try find something that I liked the most, although usually I tend to make things as I'm going and leave them at that.
SS: If you could choose an ideal environment or situation for people to be in while they listen to your album, what would it be?
JS:  Headphones, in the dark, lying down somewhere comfortable.
SS: I see that you have made this album available as a free digital download, which is a growing trend with artists at the moment. How does doing this serve you and at what stage will you be making a change if any?
JS:  It's just so much easier! I also printed 20 physical copies which I am giving out to the people who want them, for free as well. In the future I may charge, but only for physical copies. Digital versions will always be available for free.
SS: If your music was an animal of some sort, which animal would it be?
JS:  It would, without a doubt, be a Pangolin
SS: What's on the horizon for baptiste?
JS:  I feel like I still have many things to learn, and I feel that my music still has a long way to go and to grow. I've already been working on new stuff, I have a few new toys to work with as well, so probably another album fairly soon, hopefully this year! If I can convince myself, and a few other people, maybe I'll do some live stuff. Scary!
SS: At the moment you working as a stand alone artist?
JS:  I am indeed, everything is recorded or programmed by me, although I would like to collaborate with some people next time around. Gonna talk to them and see if we can do it.
SS: What are the challenges of working by yourself?
JS:  It gets tedious and very tiring having to do everything yourself.
SS: What do you think working with other artists will bring about?
JS:  I think it could be better because I'd get to concentrate on specific parts more, and when there is no one else involved you start wondering if things are even sounding good, you don't know what to think after you've heard the same thing a hundred times while tweaking and playing it over and over. It would be nice to have some external input and advice and opinions sometimes.
SS: Last words?
JS: Thanks to everyone, you know who you all are.

- baptise / The Arcade Summer (back cover), 2010
- baptiste / The Whiskey EP, 2007

The End.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Trapped Flies

My younger brother Ryan and I took the ferry over to Nanaimo which is a small city along the the east coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The trip out there was pretty fun simply because Ryan had never been to the Island and I was showing him around (he was going to be staying for about 2 weeks, I was returning to Vancouver the same day). I managed to shoot a few photographs while we were on the ferry but the weather turned bad just as we arrived at Departure Bay (the ferry terminal when traveling to Nanaimo). Not all was lost, we did still manage to find a place that served heaped plates of scrambled eggs, sausages, toast and bacon for only $4 and free pool.. oh yeah!! We hung out for a couple hours and then I had to head back.

A few days later my friend Erin, Charlotte and Myself took a drive out to Squamish which is approximately halfway between Vancouver and Whistler. We spent most of the day exploring & pouring through thrift stores, picking up a few loose pins and badges as well as an awesome chair from the Seventies. In the afternoon we made a stop at the West Coast Railway Park which is a great spot even if you're only remotely interested in trains. A couple days before this trip I had also acquired my stereo field recorder. So I've attached some of the recordings of the day (*Note, there are audio clips between the photographs)

- Charlotte laughing about the fake real cat in the Thrift Store (00:25 min, Please use headphones where possible), 2010

-Ryan, 2010
 -Ryan, 2010
 -Nanaimo Labour Union, Nanaimo 2010
 - Thrift Store, Squamish 2010

- Searching for pins (03:47 min, Please use headphones where possible), 2010

 - West Coast Railway Heritage Park, Model display, Squamish 2010
- Flies trapped behind the windows of a decommissioned train (01:02 min, Please use headphones where possible), 2010

 - Erin, Squamish 2010

The End.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Astronauts & Microbialites

Some days are a little unexpected, you wake up at 4 AM to take you brother to a bus stop so he can catch a bus to catch a flight to Dallas, Texas. You drive home & fall asleep again. You're then woken up by your girlfriend who wants to know if you could drive and accompany her out to the Center for Aquaculture and Environmental Research in West Vancouver. You oblige (of course). When you arrive you're met by two Astronauts. The first is a Canadian Astronaut, Chris A Hadfield, who happens to be the Chief Astronaut for the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), the first Canadian ever to walk in space, who's attained countless awards and accolades for his contributions in the field of aeronautical design, testing and innovation. Seriously over achieved, the guy has an airport named after him. The second is an American Scientist & NASA Astronaut by the name of Stan G. Love who served as CAPCOM (spacecraft communicator) in Mission Control for Station Expeditions 1 through 7 and for Shuttle missions STS-104, STS-108, and STS-112. As well as being a crew member on various other missions. Another notoriously well studied and experienced astronaut.

 - Colonel Chris A. Hadfield (Left) & Stanley G. Love (Right) Images: NASA & CSA
- Colonel Chris A. Hadfield, Photographed by Astronaut Scott E. Parazynski.

The two men are out in West Vancouver training on the Nuytco Research DeepWorker 2000 submersible which will be used Pavilion Lake Research Project. A project which is researching the occurrence and nature of Microbialites in the extreme depths Pavilion lake near Kamloops B.C. The astronauts and the earth based Microbialite scientists and biologists are in a mutually beneficial relationship being that astronauts get hands practice on working in hostile and unforgiving environments while the scientists get the best pilots on earth to gather samples and make scientific observations of the untouched microorganisms at the bottom of Pavilion lake. I managed to take a few Photographs and do a field recordings of the preparation & first training run of the one manned submersible which took place just off the North Shore in West Vancouver.

- Radio transmissions of training exercise, recorded on location (06:28 min, Please use headphones where possible), 2010

 - Chris A. Hadfield preparing for a Television interview, 2010
- Colonel Chris A. Hadfield, 2010
- Pre-dive systems check, 2010
-Nuytco Technician & DeepWorker 2000 Submersible, 2010
- DeepWorker 2000, 2010
- DeepWorker 2000, 2010
- Burrard Inlet, West Vancouver, 2010
- Burrard Inlet, West Vancouver, 2010
- Clouds, 2010

The End.