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For Queer Women of Color Everywhere, this is the film that the internet not only needs, but deserves.

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~~GIRL TALK with GIRLS RITUALS (FKA MOM)~~

LISTEN: https://blacksquares.bandcamp.com/

SOUNDS LIKE:  if early 3d animation reels were rediscovered a thousand years from now and worshiped, this would be the gospel sound

What’s the best thing that happened to you today? 

I picked out a knot of hair from the shower drain. Like a foot long with some thickness on it. I’m not sure its ok that I’m saying this. It was mostly my hair anyways, with little rings of other ppls hair, held together by some unknown elements. When i pulled it out it was so heavy that it felt like it was holding hands with me. It got my heart beating all fast. It was more intimate than life has been recently.

Do you believe in anything supernatural?

I think that the power of caring about yourself and other people has invisible benefits, maybe supernatural ones. I always wanted to think friendship and sisterhood can create a magical space around people and protect us from seemingly impossible problems. The final track on Reddishness, “Shield” is about this.

What’s the toughest part about making music for you?

Trusting yr own heart & following thru. To make a song you mostly have to be able to not stop yourself. You cant be forgetting your ideas —or destroying your songs by thinking your idea sucks so you wind up not making the song. Being too tired is a major enemy also.

Do you have any particular goal as a musician?

I want to put more futuristic ideas out into the world. I’m a very futuristic woman. In the past a person like me couldn’t have been able to exist, even just physically as I am. I want to take advantage of all the options & potential that comes from the modernness in the world. If our pop-culture can become more futuristic, we’ll automatically have our minds open to more futuristic realities too. Like how a synthesizer has a  wider range of sounds than any acoustic instrument, there could be so many more paths to a happy life than what we’ve explored. I wanna see all these beautiful possibilities get opened up.

Wow, yes! Is the future now? Is the future friendly?

Some of the heaviest bass drums ever created in history are coming out in songs now. i think we have the most pharmaceutical grade drums. That heavy rhythm and the bass rattle are key components of affecting the physical body with music. I think its good. I think it makes people feel good.

You’re kinda Internet famous, right? How did that happen?

More than anything I’ve just been around for a long time. For 13 years I’d been making these songs on the computer and putting them online wherever I could. I was obsessed with MySpace. I was so heartbroken when people stopped using that site because I spent years and years of my time trying to build that up. I probably almost put almost the same amount of hours into Tumblr. A insane amount of time. An amount of time I spent on the computer because I am insane.

How does your relationship with the internet influence your music?

Right now I make blog music. I try to work really quickly on a song and do it in the moment, capturing that burst of emotion into this disposable digital mp3 form and posting it on my blog right away. If our attention spans are getting shorter from using the cellphone and the TV at the same time, I try to keep the song short and say what I got to say and be done.

Which Canadian musicians inspire you?

Michela Mars AKA the Boy Pussy taught me everything i know about real techno. She also taught me a lot about how to use a drum machine. Before that I only ever made beats in fruity loops, not even with a midi controller but just clicking on notes with a mouse. We both were these lil electronica hotshot MySpace bitches and wed be so similar in a lot of ways but so at each others necks in other ways. We would always get into the most bitter arguments over nothing and I’d run out of her apartment crying like a child but she also taught me a lot of her DJ insight and how to use all her gear to make heavy, danceable beats. I flat out copied her — I bought a Roland MC 505 just a few months after getting obsessed with that machine at her house.

Bile Sister is one I’m really excited about. The way they build their tracks is super nice. Like in a Bile Sister song theres a synth riff and I’m like, “oh i didn’t even realize you could build a riff like that”. Its very like, new to me, and it works. Thats what music is about to me: finding new ways to have your own new style & make it work. I wanna hear the newest styles always, I wanna hear the newest mutations. I’m a mutant and so i only associate with mutants…

Peaches too definitely gave me new ideas about what electronic music could be. I listened to Teaches of Peaches 5000 times when I was like 12. The sounds on that record really felt like how the experience of being in my body was. All those twitchy blown out drum machines and abrasive synth voices. I always wanted to holler or groan all the time too. Probably even now theres a residual Peachesness to how i make beats.

Prozzak was really big for me, when those videos came out I wanted my own electro rock cartoon band too. Grimes is inspiring for putting out all these hit records just from garageband, Deadma5 produced the biggest dance record ever on Beatport when he was just a little kid, he really brought in this whole subgenre of beats. All these Canadian electronica artists that found a new way to break out that nobody had really done before. Yamantaka//Sonic Titan, I love visual kei, always obsessed with bands that believe in the videos and visual element, always wanna be like that too. I used to crash on YT//ST singers couch and now I just str8 out sleep in the room that used to be hers. I’m moving up in the world.

Moving upwards ‘n onwards! So nice. Anything else you wanna say?

Yes! Starting right now today you can download Girls Rituals debut album “Reddishness” for free. Im not worried about getting paid from it anymore because I got a new album coming out soon as I can finish it. Its called “New Normal” keep your mind open for it! 

Saskatchewan Gothic
  • You’re driving three and a half hours out of town for work, and you stop in a small town for gas. The pumps are white and gleaming chrome, they show the running total on white analogue dials. Gas costs eleven cents a gallon, Pepsi costs five cents a bottle. Magazines in the gas station feature Paul Anka and Tommy Douglas. The locals whistle appreciatively at your futuristic car, but they shake their heads and shrug when it won’t start back up. 
  • You make a new friend at work, and start to spend time together after hours. She always comes alone. Her boyfriend works the rigs in Alberta. Her family is out in Edmonton. Her only son’s studying medicine at U of A. One day, you’re in the bathroom at work. You recognize her shoes from under the stall door, and someone else’s. She’s telling them that you got a job offer in Calgary. The stranger leaves, and you hear the door lock. 
  • You’re coming home late, and a deer runs in front of your car. You hit the brakes, but not quickly enough, and the deer stands its ground, frozen in your headlights. As its eyes meet yours, they flash red. Its antlers are enormous - a twelve pointer? This is your last thought as you close your eyes and brace for impact. When you open them, you see the sky, the smoking wreck of your car, and your body, twenty feet away. 
  • The game was awesome. The Riders are stronger than they’ve been in years, and the shutout game they played against Montreal will be talked about for years to come. What an amazing night for your first Riders game at Mosaic Stadium. You feel awesome and you want to party at the Green Mile. You get a little carried away. You wake up in La Ronge. You have lost a month of time. 
  • Someone finally bought the derelict church up the street from your house. The real estate sign goes down, the church sign says the first service will happen two weeks from Sunday. It’s a Christian denomination you’ve never heard of. The church is a runaway success, filling its parking lot every Sunday. You start to notice church meetings at weird times - 8:00 am on a Thursday, 12:00 midnight on Friday night. You walk your dog at 3:00 am, unable to sleep. The church’s lights are all on. Its lot is full, and you hear loud music, chanting, coming from within. You approach it. Your dog refuses to walk on to the lot. You look into the window, and see your mother, father, and brother dancing naked, covered in blood. Your mother’s eyes meet yours. 
  • You never liked Pilsner until you tried it. Now you can’t get enough. As you down a bottle at breakfast, you wonder if you might be developing a drinking problem… except it never gets you drunk. When you drink it, you can talk to God. 
  • There’s a blizzard warning for the coming weekend, so you batten down the hatches. You hit the grocery store after work on Friday and buy your weekly haul, plus a bottle of Gibson’s from the board store. The winds pick up on your drive home. It’s 6:00 pm and black as midnight. The snow sticks to your windshield. You share an amiable complaint with the neighbour man as you hurry indoors, as both of you grouse about why, exactly, you chose to live here. You heat up a frozen pizza, pour your whiskey, and fall asleep in front of Netflix warm and happy and drunk. The next morning, you venture out. The snow has blanketed the road and the sidewalk, with no footprints or tire tracks. Your neighbour’s door is wide open, with snow piling up in the corner of the door frame. You see no vehicles, animals, or signs of life, just snow. 
10

Hotel Canadiana for Air Canada’s enRoute Magazine
Illustration by Jeannie Phan

A big thanks to Leila for allowing me to illustrate a section of the current issue full of wonderful Canadiana accommodations - shopping excursions in Ottawa, catching a Blue Jay’s Game in Toronto, seaweed treatments in Vancouver amongst a few places to check if you’re in the Great White North!  

Find me around - instagram / twitter / etsy / prints

From our 100 Best Canadian Bands Ever list

Band: Tegan and Sara
Endorsed by: Andy Samberg, the Lonely Island

“I first met them at their show in New York, my buddy and I went to see them and we all hung out a bit after the show. I remember them being so funny, they are such witty, sharp people. I had really liked their music for a long time, and then when So Jealous came out, I started diving into their back catalogue and was like, ‘Oh my God, this really is a great band.’ The strength of their voices, and the uniqueness of their voices makes their music so undoubtedly 'Tegan and Sara.’ When you like those kind of strong melodies, and their definitive style, which I definitely do, that’s a very gratifying trait.”