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Purple Metropolis's spectacular lineup in two-block downtown radius this weekend

All occasions are all-ages, which is new so a 16-year-old child can get a wristband and go to each bar present and every part in your complete competition

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Newly stealth and predictably cool, Purple Metropolis Music Competition is ready to energise and electrify the downtown core this weekend, vibrating with greater than 70 totally different acts throughout 9 phases in and out beginning Friday.

From California punk super-group Off! to Regina steel gods Black Thunder to Vancouver’s melodic Lightning Mud to the celebratory remaining hurrah of the native Switches, the varied lineup largely leans into punk and a contemporary psych-rock vibe.

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It’s very a lot designed to enchantment to an up-and-coming youth crowd — not solely, thoughts you — however each occasion is now all-ages, which is new.

“So, should you’re a 16-year-old child,” says Purple Metropolis’s government director, Ryan Rathjen, “you may get a wristband and go to each bar present and every part in your complete competition.”

However this isn’t the one change for the higher.

“Final yr was a little bit of a studying curve,” says Rathjen, who took on an unbelievable, sleep-deprived quantity of hustle in 2022 — the primary, full-scale Purple Metropolis pushing out of the pandemic, freshly renamed from the revolutionary Up + Downtown Music Competition.

Straddling either side of the river final yr, Purple Metropolis boasted greater than 80 acts taking part in Grindstone, Garneau Theatre, quite a few downtown venues and two full days at Hawrelak Park.

“We’ve acquired virtually as many artists this yr,” notes Rathjen with amusing. “We simply saved including new ones.

“However the worth level is decrease to make it extra accessible and simpler for folks to attend.”

Admission right down to $150 for the weekend

Costs have dropped to $150 for a three-day wristband — $200 for a VIP band if you wish to skip the lineups, which additionally includs a limited-edition display screen poster and competition T-shirt or tote. The posters are by Australia’s Callum Rooney, South Africa’s Simon Berndt and native visible wizard Lyle Bell.

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The most important enhancements to the fest, nevertheless, contain its compressed geography.

With Hawrelak Park closed for renovations, Purple Metropolis 2023 is letting free with a free block get together and beer gardens in entrance of The Starlite Room/Temple advanced on 102 Road, simply south of Jasper Avenue.

Overdrive ii Oblivion (O.ii.O), KT Laine and Misfortune Tellers prime the primary day’s backyard invoice, whereas Lightning Mud, Sam the Residing and the versatile Rae Spoon shut out the second.

These no-cover, open-air reveals will bounce hold forth the core’s partitions 2-8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, off-ramping into the majority of the nightly ticketed concert events.

And Friday evening additionally has its personal reveals, together with free programming at River Metropolis Revival Home.

“We needed to maintain the competition in a better proximity,” Rathjen explains. “So it was simpler to have extra of a group really feel by having everybody in a centralized location.”

The road get together is within the nucleus of the now all-downtown constellation of venues inside a two-block radius, together with Downtown Edmonton Neighborhood League, River Metropolis Revival, McDougall United Church, and a number of phases inside Freemasons’ Corridor and the hallowed Starlite advanced.

The competition producer envisions teams of followers strolling round, evaluating musical notes between venues.

“We even have extra of a collective reserving outlook this yr,” Rathjen notes, “and the quantity of people that submitted to play greater than doubled from the yr earlier than.”

Rathjen now takes us on a guided tour of a few of the various programming highlights.

“I might say the most important, most attention-grabbing rating with the biggest punk-rock royalty can be Off! with Keith Morris, who was the lead singer of Black Flag and the Circle Jerks,” notes the promoter. “So one of many founders of punk rock is coming to city to play for the primary time.”

The supergroup additionally consists of members of …And You Will Know Us By the Path of Useless and Thundercat, so this Friday evening punk/hardcore/thrash showcase at Starlite together with Bootlicker and Useless Fibres shall be effectively attended.

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Rathjen additionally flags Pleasure Venom from Austin, Texas making its Alberta debut Saturday evening at Freemasons’.

“They’re, like, riot-grrrl-meets-anarcho-punk-meets-thrash,” he says. “I believe they’re going to rock it tremendous onerous, and that showcase is admittedly femme-focused, a number of feminine hardcore and punk bands.”

A calmer, extra folk-leaning vibe is going on Friday evening: indie rock band Hand Habits, with Sister Ray and Edmonton ex-pat Calvin Love.

“I’m tremendous stoked to be going again to McDougall as a result of it’s such a great-sounding venue,” says Rathjen. “So we have been joyful so as to add some sit-down, theatre-style performances.

“Hand Habits’ Meg Duffy has a really atmospheric guitar sound, only a very distinctive participant and vocalist. And Calvin Love hasn’t performed since Purple Metropolis 2021.”

Pixel Grip art
Pixel Grip is performs Purple Metropolis at Starlite Sunday. Picture by Alexus McLane /equipped picture

Sunday evening’s darkwave present at Starlite, in the meantime, is a curator collaboration with Verboden Competition out of Vancouver, co-presented by Edmonton’s Fruit Loop Society of Alberta. The gothy/synth-pop Gentle Asylum headlines.

“Pixel Grip opening up is extra of the brand new flavour of these things popping out of Chicago,” Rathjen explains of this showcase, to which one ought to undoubtedly put on black eyeshadow and put together to bounce.

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Yet one more suggestion Rathjen talks about is Saturday’s programming at McDougall, placed on by the Edmonton Heyoka Therapeutic Society, beginning at midday.

“They’re launching a movie competition in 2024 known as Silent No Extra, however they’re going to be exhibiting a bunch of shorts through the day,” Rathjen says, including there shall be free meals, together with bannock burgers, and Elders will communicate.

Then, at 7 p.m., the music begins, beginning with Donita Giant, then Cassia Hardy of Wares, and eventually the Polaris-shortlisted ZOON.

“ZOON is an Anishinaabe artist, a pioneer in a brand new type of music they contemplate moccasin gaze,” Rathjen explains, “so tremendous dreamy and coping with a whole lot of private therapeutic and content material that comes from the lens of being an Indigenous particular person in Canada.”

There are lots extra bands, thoughts you, so check out your complete lineup and schedule at, the place you should purchase wristbands, or tickets to particular person reveals starting from $15-40.

“When you’ve got the wristband, you’ll be able to actually decide and select even the precise bands on every invoice and bounce forwards and backwards each evening,” Rathjen notes. “However with all of the free programming, even should you’ve by no means been earlier than or know any of the bands, you’ll be able to come test it out and dabble earlier than going all in.”


Purple Metropolis Music Competition

When Friday – Sunday

The place Varied downtown venues

Tickets $150 wristbands; particular person reveals $15-40 at 

[email protected]


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