Doucet’s White Falcon and an Edmonton invasion

What’s going on in Calgary music this week

Who would’ve thought that Luke Doucet would turn out to be Canada’s best alt-country songwriter? When he founded his alt-surf-rock band Veal in the mid-’90s Doucet had already made a name for himself as a session man and touring musician supporting Canadian idols like Sarah McLachlan. Still Veal’s hook-laden shoulda-been-hits barely hinted at Doucet’s rootsy reinvention. Now that he’s found a permanent backing band in The White Falcon (named for the singer-songwriter’s beloved Gretsch guitar) he’s also found a perfect middle-ground between his old band’s hard-rock swagger and his solo material’s twang-inflected narratives. The crack band will be there this Saturday March 7 when Doucet plays the Gateway on the SAIT campus.

Saturday also sees a pair of Edmonton outfits invading the HiFi stage. Shoegazers-cum-electro-popsters Faunts and psych-pop revivalists The Whitsundays are fine ambassadors for our neighbours to the north and an excellent alternative for those less inclined to roots rock.

On the other hand if you just can’t get enough roots(ish) rock you’d do well to swing by Broken City on Friday March 6. Calgary’s own Rambling Ambassadors will be serving up a healthy platter of instrumental ditties running the gambit from surf rock to spaghetti western noodlings. With Edmonton rock ’n’ roll wunderkind Michael Rault in tow the show promises to be a memorable one.

Speaking of memories there are surely at least a few folks out there who can still recall all the words to “Sex and Candy” the mid-’90s hit by quirky rockers Marcy Playground. Their consistently clever pop rock always deserved better than one-hit-wonder status and those curious to give them another try can catch them at the Back Alley on Tuesday March 10. The big question is do you save the big hit for the encore or get it out of the way up front?

If rockabilly’s more your style there’s always Burlington Ontario’s The Creepshow at SAIT also on Tuesday. Now into their fourth year the group has always embraced the cheesiness of the psychobilly sub-genre to make the most out of their live sets. Keep your tongue firmly in your cheek and you’ll get along just fine.