Arts

Band will bring ‘mad men dance party’ to U of O

 Photo courtesy of the PepTides

THE STUDENT FEDERATION of the University of Ottawa (SFUO) is welcoming back students with a festival of music, buskers, food, and psychics.

On Sept. 13 starting at 5 p.m. on Tabaret lawn, the Fall Festival will begin with carnival games, performers, and food. At 8 p.m. the main concert will feature hoop dancing by Rhonda Doxtator, Justin Holness, the PepTides, and A Tribe Called Red. The festival will end with a headphone disco.

The PepTides are a local band that member DeeDee Butters describes as a post-apocalyptic mad men dance party.

“They can expect for it to be super theatrical and a lot of fun to watch,” said Butters. “The words are really dark and the tone is really light.”

The PepTides consist of nine members who write and record together.

The PepTides’ songs look at the familiar and give a different perspective. For example, in “For Those Who Hate Carnage,” the band sings about epidemic and plague with militaristic marching. Then they juxtapose it with “For Those Who Hate to Shave and Shower for a Date” about the discomfort and anxiety of social situations.

“We’re complaining about going on a date and how we hate to socialize and chit and chat and all of these things that are actually really pleasant to do and yet we somehow find a way to complain about it,” said Butters.

She explains that positioning serious and silly themed songs together points to how ridiculous our everyday complaints can be.

“In our way, we’re choosing to take a bunch of serious issues and show the audience how absurd they really are.”

At the Fall Festival, the PepTides will be performing a combination of their albums For Those Who Hate Human Interaction, Revenge of the Vinyl Café, and the unreleased, Love Question Mark.

“And there may or may not be some twerking,” Butters said.

The headliner of the night is A Tribe Called Red, whose album Nation II Nation has been shortlisted for the 2013 Polaris Music Prize. Mixing traditional powwow and electronic music, they’ve toured across Canada this year, as well as playing shows in the United States and Mexico.

Their cultural heritage is an important part of the band’s identity, as demonstrated through sampling powwow music and how vocal they are about Aboriginal rights and social issues.

The band is clear with fans that they don’t appreciate thoughtless and racist behaviour at their shows. Earlier this year, they tweeted, “Non Natives that come to our shows, we need to talk. Please stop wearing headdresses and war paint. It’s insulting.”

Band member Ian Campeau has campaigned against the name of the Nepean Redskins Football Club for several years, and this month he filed a human rights complaint requesting the club rebrand under a different name.

The band’s headlining spot at the Fall Festival is sure to attract fans and students and help support efforts to increase the visibility of indigenous culture at the U of O.