The Halifax Urban Folk Festival is stoked to bring The Hidden Cameras‘ creative force Joel Gibb to The Carleton stage on his return to Canada from his now-home in Berlin. Local duo Pillow Fite will open this special show on Wednesday, August 31st. Show time is 7 PM and tickets are $30 + HST.
***Please note: we will be selling all seats in the room for this show. We will try our best to seat everyone with friends but this is not a table bubble event***
One of Canada’s most mercurial artists, Joel Gibb is the lead singer, songwriter and choir captain of The Hidden Cameras. Forming in Toronto in 2001, Gibb and his gang of musical provocateurs created music and live performances legendary for their raucous, unfettered celebration of freedom and sexuality.
Released on the eve of Canada’s sesquicentennial celebrations, ‘Home On Native Land’ is an inquisitive ode to Gibb’s homeland; it’s a stealthy return to Canadian soil both philosophically and physically. After relocating to Berlin for some time, The Hidden Cameras pick up and head west to commune with musical ancestors and explore the gentle folk sounds of the Canadian countryside. But as with everything Gibb does, there’s a darker undercurrent flowing beneath the Canadiana terrain. With the title ‘Home On NativeLand’ being a play on the national anthem line ‘home and native land’, this title questions the definition and identity of Gibb’s nation, referencing the raging debate about repatriation of First Nations in Canada. Ever the master of subversion, Gibb arches an inquiring eyebrow at the personal as well as the political through his songs, returning to themes of belonging and identity from within. As a commanding, provocative figurehead of the LGBTQ community, Gibb inhabits the guise of the lonesome cowboy to his own ends, plumbing the depths of musical memory and delivering a beautiful album of life affirming experiences in all its colours along the way.
‘Home On Native Land’ was written and recorded over ten years by Gibb with friends, bandmates and icons including Rufus Wainwright, Feist, Neil Tennant, Bahamas, Ron Sexsmith and Mary Margaret O’Hara. Gibb once again assembles a band of musical accomplices and takes them on an adventure in revisionist history, forming a chorus of voices over a score of dulcet tones and twanging rock. The album makes new offers to the Canadiana genre with infectious melodies (“Big Blue”) and wild hymns (“Drunk Dancer’s Waltz”),overarched by Gibbs’ trademark, honeyed vocals and sighing guitars. His talents as a songwriter and composer remain undimmed, his on point lyrics oozing with hopefulness, joy and sorrow.
Pillow Fite is a queer alt-folk duo from Halifax, NS formed by Art Ross (they/them) and Aaron Green (he/him) over voice memos and text messages of song ideas during the Covid lockdown. Drawing influence from Phoebe Bridgers and Snail Mail, Pillow Fite use confessional, matter-of-fact lyrics over intricate guitar arrangements and lush dynamics. The duo’s vastly different musical approaches compliment each other to produce sweet yet biting songs about road trips, queer love and mental health.