It’s time once again for the most divisive holiday of the year. For every sweet-toothed suitor and hapless romantic who buys into the whole hearts-and-candies thing, there’s a swack of sullen singles and jaded couples who’d rather ignore the whole thing.
For those who can’t get enough of the lovey-dovey stuff, your best bet on February 14 is to head to The Marquee Room, where the lovely Jenn Grant will be providing suitably sultry sounds. Fret not, though, all ye more cynical music fans — Grant’s a romantic, but she’s far from schmaltzy. Head to ffwdweekly.com to read her thoughts on Hallmark’s favourite holiday.
If headbanging’s more your thing than handholding, Broken City’s a better option. They’re celebrating Valentine’s with sets from roots rockers Cowpuncher, recently reunited rap-rock all-stars The A-Team and the mysterious Leatherbeard (whose members bear a striking resemblance to some bloody, gutsy, bruised and cut dudes whose names I can’t quite place).
Your other option is to party hard earlier in the weekend and hibernate your way through Cupid’s reign of terror. It won’t be hard to keep busy. You can start with The Rural Alberta Advantage, who’ll be sharing Broken City’s stage with Wooden Sky and Great Bloomers on Thursday, February 11 and Friday, February 12. The Friday show is sold out at the time of this writing, and Thursday’s probably going the same way, so best to buy your tickets quickly.
Then, on Saturday, February 13, celebrate Anti-Valentine’s Day at The Palomino with Calgary’s best-liked former lovers The Ex-Boyfriends, Black Dirt of the West (featuring Rick Overwater of Agriculture Club and The Culls) and horror-billy trio The Grave Mistakes. I can’t guarantee there won’t be any torch songs, but the odds are strongly in your favour.
Also on Saturday, Calgary is celebrating the launch of the Olympics with free performances from local songstress Lindsay Ell, rockers The Dudes (have I mentioned them already in this column?) and… um… Simple Plan. At least The Palomino is only a stone’s throw away, if you felt like ducking out before the headliners.
Lastly (and briefly), Californian beat-master Flying Lotus is heading back to Calgary with a set at the Hifi Club on Wednesday, February 17. If he’s good enough to collaborate with Thom Yorke, he’s good enough for you to check out. Simple as that.