Finding time

Blackstreet cometh, PLUS an Artbeat Montreal piu piu party, En Cachette celebrates a year in business, Krystale launches a video, Lyricist Lounge makes a move and Nuit Blanche throws heads a bone.

You can’t take a leap year for granted in Montreal. Think about it: exactly one year ago today, you had the chance to do tomorrow what you aren’t getting done right now.

But then, who on this stranded mountain-isle really needs another day of February? Your age is over, Aquarius. Make way for Pisces parades and bermuda-crazed April fools.

Turning the burner up on winter blues, the coming weeks and months are already bubbling with potential for the avid live-rap addict. From now to Easter weekend and beyond, promoters and venues are already busy with top-shelf billings.

The coming weeks will have you believing in the powers of the spring showers, ’cause when it rains, it pours. I mean, how often am I gonna get to tell you that Blackstreet is coming?

That’s just a sample-sized bite of what’s to come, so if your appetite is stirred, check back weekly for new menus. And take note, friendos: The Shine has moved from Wednesdays to Thursdays officially, which I guess means we somehow ended up with an extra day after all.

Put it on hold for any of the following functions:

Thursday – It’s an Artbeat Montreal affair at En Cachette, with five dope DJs in Sagewondah, Simahlak, Sev Dee, Shash’u and Kaytranada, free before 11 p.m. and sure to get your engine running for the weekend.

Friday – Local songstress Krystale launches a new video for “Machine” backed by a full live band at O Patro Vys, so expect sights, sounds and soulfulness.

Also that night, En Cachette celebrates a first anniversary and a year of holding down good food, good drinks, good people and good music. Congrats and thanks for giving the scene another place to shine. Godfather D spins the birthday music and Shaharah and Soulvation bring the live vibe.

SaturdayNuit Blanche is here, and with it your annual pass for 5 a.m. throw-up sessions on downtown monuments. White night has never really opted for a full-on hip hop presence, but Poirier’s customary installment of Karnival is back, free of charge on a first come, first serve basis at Club Soda. The P is joined by guests the Salivation Army and Riddim Wise, blasting rays of musical light long into the night.

MIMS puts on a Nuit Blanche installment of 24 Hours of Vinyl which I’m told will be the final Montreal edition for at least a year. Hosted by le Bleury, attendees are welcome from 7 p.m. till last call, then may return from 8 a.m. Sunday morning straight through till the 24th hour. Tons of awesome DJs and lots of potential fun to be had so check the event page for full details.

I’ll suggest Shaika Café in NDG as a potential Nuit Blanche warm-up stop for a free Bad Weather show to set the mood from 9–11 p.m.

Sunday – If you stayed up an entire 24 hours, why stop now? L’Alizé is the spot for a new homespun edition of Lyricist Lounge, brought to us by Shogun. Rappers doin’ spoken word, specialty eats and the foundation for future events with which Sho intends to marry food, fashion, art and music under a hip hop wedding arch. Help set it off with the lyricists. ■

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