Neko Case is definitely making up for forgetting about us Saskatchewan folk for a long while. I can’t remember the last time she toured through here, though that might be my dumb memory. No longer! She was probably the best act to play the 2013 Regina Folk Festival, and she’ll be playing O’Brian’s in Saskatoon on May 18 with the Dodos. Luckily, you can never see her too much live, so it’s still exciting news that she’s one of the artists announced for the 2014 Sled Island Festival in Calgary.
Last year’s Alberta floods in june nearly kiboshed the festival for 2013 and forever, from the sounds of it. The future of Sled Island seemed entirely in jeopardy, so it’s a relief that they’re back again in 2014 and with what’s shaping up to be an exciting lineup. You can see some of the big names they’ve got down so far at their website.
Right now, there are plenty of great acts in addition to Case. Timeless beardo rockers like Rocket from the Crypt and Bob Mould will be around, as will constant Canadian gem the Joel Plaskett Emergency. The guest curator of the festival this year, Kathleen Hanna, is bringing her latest group, the Julie Ruin, to the fest. And St. Vincent will be performing, news that’s surely making some music fans spin in a circle and cry from excitement.
Sled Island is hugely fun. Personally, I was under the impression that all Calgary was just a nightmare network of roads and malls based on my tiny bit of experience with the city. Sled proved me so wrong. I’m glad it’s back.