Feature A & E Stories

The Body Politic going through many musical transformations

Band has made large steps of progression since forming in 2010

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The word intellectual isn't often associated with rock n roll music. But that's exactly how drummer Spencer Bowman describes the music that his band, The Body Politic, is playing across western Canada.

For Bowman and his bandmates, that means their music is infused with complex techniques, such as sweep picking and two hand tapping. These techniques, combined with the band's love of progressive rock, can be heard in their 2011 album, All Too Human.

However, this blend of music is a big change from how the band first started out. As Bowman stated, "when we got together, when we were 14, it was sort of a classic rock band."

Once the band members graduated high school and had enrolled into Vancouver Island University, they decided it was time to get serious about their careers in music.


Blake Berglund and the Vultures Release new record, 'Jasper'

Fate of live album was 'Hanging by a thread' after loss of main sponsor

thumb Blake-Berglund-BWDespite the loss of their main sponsor and their $20,000 budget, Blake Berglund and the Vultures followed through with the production of their live album, Jasper, which released Sept. 30.

Initially, a local beer company was planning on sponsoring the album and would have packaged Jasper alongside cases of beer.

However, after the company backed out, the band made a decision to raise the funds to record and produce the album independently.

This decision was a successful one. After raising over $7000, Jasper was recorded live this past August during two performances at the Jasper Legion Branch 31. The album release took place at the Ironwood Stage in Calgary.


The Business of Halloween: ‘A Labor of Love’

Screamfest owner Mike Sheppard offers tricks and treats to fear loving freaks

thumb markengelWEBFor some, Halloween is an exciting time of year. But for one Calgary professional couple, it is a hell of a lot of work.

Mike Sheppard and his wife Maureen earn their conventional living teaching part-time at Mount Royal University and collecting rental income from a property they own.

In 2001, they invested in something less conventional; they bought a haunted house and invested in the business of Halloween. The Sheppards once simple haunted house has since evolved into Canada's largest and what they claim to be the "scariest" Halloween event in Canada: Screamfest.


‘Anything is possible’: A check-in with ‘The Big Man’

 After losing almost 300 lbs, Bill Laplante is more motivated than ever to show people that they can change their lives

thumb laplante pants tallIt's an all too common story; people decide to lose weight, eat better and focus on their health only to fall back into old routines.

But with radio personality Bill (The Big Man) Laplante, who these days goes by his birth-name, William, that played out resolution meant more than simply staying away from fried food or adding quinoa to his grocery list.


At his heaviest, 707 lbs, Laplante was tired of seeing the inside of a hospital — the fear of death a serious reality.

And with that, he's since lost more than 275 lbs.