Sled Island and Folk Fest announce awesome lineups

Pints were poured and beers were cheered at both the media launch for the Calgary Folk Music Festival on Wednesday May 13 at the Ship and Anchor and the Sled Island press conference on Friday May 1 at Broken City with the two summer festivals announcing equally exciting lineups for 2009.

The Folk Fest July 23-26 at Prince’s Island Park has quite a few surprises this year with artists such as turntable wizard Kid Koala genre-defying trio Akron/Family articulate indie-pop act The Decemberists U.K. faves Gomez K Records artist Mirah and Sam Beam (a.k.a. Iron and Wine) possessor of one of the most soothing voices and best beards in the biz.

Both coasts of Canada are also represented with Nova Scotia’s Tom Fun Orchestra Ontario’s Esthero Apostle of Hustle and The Acorn Arcade Fire-offshoot Belle Orchestre Saskatchewan’s Deep Dark Woods B.C.’s Carolyn Mark and Calgary’s Chad VanGaalen Jay Crocker Michael Bernard Fitzgerald the Ramblin’ Ambassadors and Dragon Fli Empire. However perhaps the coolest Folk Fest act of 2009 will be British post-punk innovators The Mekons who now transmit their left-wing politics via folk country and the accordion.

Drifting on to Sled Island June 24-27 at Olympic Plaza and various venues around town their initial lineup announcement was also extremely eclectic. Israeli maniacs Monotonix Rick Froberg’s Obits femme fatales The Coathangers Montreal’s Tricky Woo and L.A.’s The Bronx will bring the rock while The King Khan and B.B.Q. show (SEE ARTICLE PAGE 17) deadly duo Quintron and Miss Pussycat Toronto’s Holy Fuck and Woodhands and the one and only Andrew W.K. should provide the party.

For those craving more experimental sounds HEALTH and Liars should scratch your itch and then some. Nardwuar Anvil Githead and The Breeders — all legends in their own right — represent the old school while local acts Women Sub-linguals and the Cripple Creek Fairies are also on board. Finally violin phenom Final Fantasy and the awe-inspiring weirdo folk of Mount Eerie should appeal to music fans of almost every stripe.