Chad VanGaalen

It's somehow fitting that a month full of ghosts and ghouls finds Calgary's Chad Vangaalen coming to town. Vangaalen's high-pitched warble has a pallid, haunted quality that is more genuinely bone-chilling than any face-painted, "No, seriously, our practice space is in a crypt" metal band could ever be. On his newest album (Diaper Island, my vote for 2011's Best Album Name), Vangaalen works in two dramatically different speeds; in the context of his syrupy slow, folky dirges, Vangaalen sounds like a man on his deathbed, making his final amends to the world. In his more raved-up numbers, Vangaalen sounds possessed by fiery spirits, spewing out apocalyptic prophesies from a sinking ship that's on fire. Watch any of Vangaalen's self-animated videos (featuring creepy but cute creatures melting into puddles and shape-shifting demons ripping each others faces off), and you'll see that Vangaalen lives in his own twisted, beautiful world that we're lucky to catch a glimpse into. With Gary War, Levi Fuller. GREG FRANKLIN

Fri., Oct. 14, 10 p.m., 2011

 
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