Our albums of the year

We decided to make a list of our staff’s favourite albums of 2019 — here they are!

With 2019 coming to an end, we at The Concordian wants to share our favourite albums from the past year, before Michael Bublé and Mariah Carey (rightfully so) take over playlists for the month.

Here are The Concordian staff’s Albums of The Year:


Immanuel Matthews: The Lost Boy by YBN Cordae

  • “This was a tough choice for me, but I had to go with this project — and no, I promise you it’s not because of its Grammy nomination. This project introduced me to Cordae, and there was something about its beautiful, creative musical production, lyrical complexity, and overall honesty, that gave me goosebumps during my first listen-through. While it might not have the same replay value as other projects this year (cue Posty’s Hollywood’s Bleeding and Jack Harlow’s Confetti), The Lost Boy’s overall quality and vibe is one I’d expect of an artist much older than 22.

Jacob Carey: So Much Fun by Young Thug

  • “While none of the albums that came out this year completely blew me away, I think that Young Thug’s album lives up to its name. While it may not be his best project (that goes to Barter 6), the album’s a fun collection of classic Atlanta Thug sounds and various features that will be most satisfactory when heard in the late clubbing hours of the night for years to come.”

Alex Hutchins: Ginger by Brockhampton

  • “It was my first time really getting into Brockhampton. I ended up getting really into them, as artists and a collective. I also just felt like Ginger was made for me. Like, they took all of my feelings and poured them into an album just for me.”

Katelyn Thomas: Father of the Bride by Vampire Weekend

  • “I feel really bad that I’m not saying the Jonas Brothers, but this album is the first in a really long time where I don’t feel like I have to press ‘skip’ at all. There are also a few Danielle Haim features and to be honest, go Haim or go home.”

Matthew Coyte: Pony by Orville Peck

  • “Finally, a voice in country music with something different to say. I’m not a big fan of stadium country, so Pony was perfect for me. It’s a more low-key take on the genre. His take on the genre grabs your ear from the first song. I also got to say that I had no idea that “cowboy chic” could work as a style, but Peck kills it. My favourite track on it is “Dead of Night,” it’s a great story about two travellers walking through the desert. Orville Peck is one of the most interesting artists of the year, every song on this album is unskippable.”

Mackenzie Lad: Igor by Tyler, the Creator.

  • Some albums come into your life at the right time, and Igor did just that for me. There’s a lot I’d like to say about this project (and I don’t think I’ve really stopped talking about it since it came out this spring), but I think Tyler’s disclaimer sums it up pretty well: “Don’t go into this album expecting a rap album. Don’t go into this album expecting any album. Just go, jump into it.”

Matthew Ohayon: Show Some Teeth by Sullivan King

  • “Move over ‘peanut butter and jelly,’ you’ve officially been pushed aside to the second most iconic duo in the world. Taking the reigns is the combo of dubstep and metal. This is Sullivan King’s first album, and I expect many more great ones to come. I listen to the same artists all the time, so for me it was either that or Illenium’s ASCEND; those are the only 2019 albums I’ve listened to. ASCEND is also fantastic, definitely worth a listen as well.”

Kayla-Marie Turriciano: Hollywood’s Bleeding by Post Malone

  • “I’ve never been super into Post Malone but I did love some of his songs off previous albums so I was excited to see what Hollywood’s Bleeding was all about. The name itself was intriguing and something about Post’s voice along with the different styles of songs on the record are hypnotizing.”

Youmna El Halabi: When We All Fall Asleep Where Do We Go by Billie Eilish

  • “To be honest, I was always putting off listening to Billie Eilish in general, just because of the general buzz around her. Kinda like when people wouldn’t watch Game of Thrones because it’s so popular. But then, on a roadtrip with some friends, we blasted her latest album and ever since, I’ve been addicted. I guess I just associate it with one of the best moments of my life with some of my favourite people.”

Callie Giaccone: The Big Day by Chance the Rapper

  • “I liked the narrative of the album, it was funky and it was different than his other stuff. It included other artists too.”

Virginie Ann: Amadjar by Tinariwen

  • “I discovered Tinariwen while on my way to the Sahara Desert last April and listening to this new album brings me back instantly. Amadjar means “foreign traveller” – It’s a slow mix of traditional and electric guitar which feels equally ancient and dreamy. Get high, have some tea and listen to these desert blues.”

Jad Abukasm: Brol la Suite by Angèle

  • “The album Brol came out in 2018. Already full of amazing songs, Angèle added seven new songs last November to her album now renamed Brol la Suite. I just feel like I can listen to that album at any given point and mood and still relate to at least three songs at a time. It’s so unfortunate that I can’t go to her concert next week.”

Chloë Lalonde: Norman Fucking Rockwell! by Lana del Rey

  • “I’m the kind of person that really sticks to my artists, I have listened to the same albums over and over again for years. So if I am being honest with myself, the only albums I’ve actually listened to repeatedly this year are Outer Peace by Toro y Moi, Clairo’s Immunity, Lana Del Rey’s Norman Fucking Rockwell!, Blink-182’s NINE, Cashmere Cat’s Princess Catgirl, FKA Twig’s Magdalene and Tei Shi’s La Linda.  Lana wins. Lana always wins. Big fat cancer 2019 mood.”

Lorenza Mezzapelle: ARIZONA BABY by Kevin Abstract 

  • “It was really hard choosing between this and Apollo XXI by Steve Lacy but ultimately, the honest lyricism made the difference. With numerous references to his past and personal experiences, the album possesses a certain vulnerability that is comforting to listen to. This, alongside the diverse instrumentals, allows for an introspective listening experience that will leave you feeling nostalgic but not over-emotional.”

Fatima Día: Amir by Tamino 

  • “Although the album came out at the end of 2018, it really took off at the beginning of this year. I first heard it in Barcelona when I had gone to stay with my family— it was a bit of a tough time for me and Tamino’s transcendental voice helped me keep my faith in the universe. Yes, I mean it. His voice has an incredible range, and when he reaches that falsetto in his song “Habibi,” you just know that faith is worthy. He’s Egyptian-Belgian, and incorporates Arabic harmonies and melodies into all his music. Amir means prince in Arabic, and it’s also his middle name— makes me very giddy.  He’s become the Amir of my heart.”

Maggie Morris: Cuz I Love You by Lizzo

  • “Sorry, I’m not even a little bit sorry.  Lizzo is iconic and I’ve been playing her songs on repeat for the better part of a year now.  There isn’t a single bad mood that this album can’t pull me out of.”

Nicole Proano: Run Fast Sleep Naked by Nick Murphy 

  • “Montreal in the summer always feels like epic freedom and this album is the epitome of that. Nick Murphy’s live performance of “Sanity” at the Montreal Jazz Festival was even better than his recorded version, if that’s even possible.”

Britanny Clarke: MŪN by Chilla

  • “I have family living abroad in Switzerland and I remember my cousin posting about this up-and-coming rap artist in France. I checked out Chilla’s music on Spotify and, woah. Her album MŪN is complete fire. She is such a versatile artist which really shines through in this album. I never skip a track when I listen to MŪN. As an artist myself, I thought she was such a badass artist, for all the girls out there looking to make it. I definitely recommend her tracks “Pour la Vie,” and “Oulala.””

Arianna Randjbar: Gece by Altın Gün

  • “Altın Gün resurrects Turkish classics in Gece, turning folk tunes your grandpa knows into a psychedelic séance you can dance to.”



Poly Savvy: Old Rivalries in New Brunswick

Both the New Democratic Party and the Green Party have butted heads the past two weeks on what appears to be a controversial development in the eastern province.

Previously thought to be 14 defectors, eight former New Democratic candidates have switched over to the Greens, as reported by the CBC. One defector, former party executive Jonathan Richardson, even went so far as to blame the move on NDP leader Jagmeet Singh’s ethnicity’s effect on regional popularity.

Naturally, such a statement has led to accusations of racism against the Greens, accusations that the party has vehemently denied. Instead, it was pointed out that Singh had not once visited the Maritimes since assuming his position in 2017. Unsurprisingly, words have been thrown back and forth since the defections, reaching levels of passive-aggressiveness best reserved for thanksgiving.

But regardless of the political bickering, the real question remains; what will be the consequential effect of these disputes on the upcoming federal and provincial elections?

The answer is… probably nothing.

It’s no secret that the Green Party has never been one to gain more than two seats at the Federal level, so far. Nor have they established any sort of major political ground on the eastern seaboard. Therefore, it’s safe to assume that no riding was ever truly in sight for a Green takeover; as New Brunswick is primarily split between Conservative and Liberal MPs, with a slight lead for the Blues.

In fact, the Greens hold a mere three provincial seats out of the province’s total of 49. Zero on the Federal level.

But what about the NDP? Have they lost any potential advantage in future polls?

Again, not necessarily.

The “defectors” mentioned consisted of members of the Oranges, who ran in the 2018 provincial elections. Ran, not won, as the NDP had not gained a single seat. Most of these individuals had figured that their prospects would be better for joining the Greens, either through the assumption that following a Sikh leader would hurt their chances or genuinely believing that Singh had not done enough to remain popular in the area.

In the end, the Greens did not gain a single seat as the New Democrats did not have anything to lose. To find out if the former had gained any clear advantage, we will need to see the results of the upcoming elections.

Until then, the Green Party will just have to settle for brownie points.


Graphic by Victoria Blair


MUTEK: Future of Immersive Spectacle Panel 2019

Video by Calvin Cashen

Feature photo by Sébastien Roy

Concordia Student Union News

CSU Club Fair Attracts Hundreds

Throughout Welcome Week, the Concordia Student Union (CSU) worked to engage new and returning students. The Union’s Facebook page listed nine events ranging from a sustainability mixer to a student-parent BBQ.

Last Wednesday’s club fair was one of CSU’s more popular events. Hundreds of people marked themselves as “interested” or “going” on the union’s Facebook page. The CSU and four faculty associations work with more than 100 on-campus groups. More than a dozen of them, like the Concordia Game Club to Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy, reached out to new and returning students at the fair to make introductions.

Concordia’s CJLO blasted music throughout the Hall Building’s mezzanine as students wandered between displays. First-year student Sienna Thompains said she enjoyed Welcome Week and the club fair.

“I didn’t really know anybody because I’m from the States, but I’m having a great time getting to know people,” said Thompains.

Chris Iannotti, an executive at the Concordia Game Club, said that many first-years and a few graduate students expressed interest in the group. According to Iannotti, finding information about student groups is difficult online but the Club Fair’s physical presence helps overcome technological barriers.

“Right now, the state of Concordia’s website for club finding is a bit messy, but here you’re able to sign up and join all the facebook groups,” said Iannotti.

Iannotti’s Concordia Game Club is not new to Concordia. Founded more than three decades ago, Iannotti said he has no complaints about CSU’s involvement in the on-campus groups.

“We all get a fair budget, and when we need something they [CSU] help us,” said Iannotti.

At another stand, Tess Walker managed the Concordia chapter of Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy. Walker, the co-founder of the Concordia chapter that opened this year, said the goal is to promote harm-reduction on campus, but she was disappointed the group did not have a presence during frosh week.

“It’s the year when people start experimenting with drugs and alcohol, and we are hoping to have more resources to hand out,” said Walker. “CSU has been helpful. Especially last year, people helped set up the club. We’ll see how it goes this year.”

Welcome Week is coming to an end, but Club Fair (part II) is scheduled from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Hall Building’s mezzanine on Wednesday, September 11.


Photos by Britanny Clarke


Editorial: What’s new with The Concordian

The 2019-20 academic year at Concordia University is here. The familiar routine of book-buying, Tim-Horton-guzzling, shuttle-bus-taking, Stingers-cheering and library-seat-searching begins once again. For all returning students, welcome back to downtown living / NDG commuting. For all new students, welcome to Concordia, home of (the always terrifying) Buzz the mascot and the always-convenient Pizza Bella.

As The Concordian prepares for another busy year, our first editorial of the year is dedicated to what we’re doing differently in 2019-20.The biggest item on the agenda: we’re changing from a weekly printed newspaper to a bi-weekly printed newspaper, moving from 26 print issues a year to 16.

This doesn’t mean that you’ll be getting less news; the opposite actually. We felt like we were spending more time putting together a physical issue instead of reporting what was happening on campus in a timely manner. This change means we’re going to be able to provide you with more stories as we transition to a digital first approach.

There were a couple reasons for this decision. The first, of course, being to best serve the Concordia community. Another major reason was sustainability. Based on research done by The Concordian last year, we found that the vast majority of our readers catch up on Concordia news online. We also found that a lot of the physical copies of the paper weren’t being picked up, due to us printing too often and too many copies per issue.

This year, we’ve also reduced the number of copies to better reflect this. This means that we’re using significantly less paper. Our goal to have more students pick up copies of the paper without flooding both campuses with copies that will go unread. Keeping the print version of The Concordian was important to us because that’s how a lot of students first hear about us on campus. From there, many would then move from print, to being regular readers online.. It’s also the way many of our writers first heard of us.

This switch will help us better achieve our goal of producing consistent, timely, and valuable reporting to the Concordia community. Looking at the landscape of student journalism across Canada, we found that more and more publications have begun to take a digital-first approach, and that switch has helped them connect with their university communities more effectively.

For The Concordian, recognizing this trend in student media has helped us plan a clear vision for the future of the publication, which includes focusing on producing timely online content, producing more content, connecting with the Concordia community, being more environmentally conscious and preparing our staff for the digital needs of the media industry.

Anyways, that’s what’s new with us this year. From the editorial team at The Concordian, it’s good to be back. We look forward to waiting for the shuttle in -40°C with you.


A look into the Stingers’ new offence

One of the major changes that the Concordia Stingers football team made after last season was hiring former St-Jean Géants head coach, Alex Surprenant, as offensive coordinator.

Fast-forward to the present, and Surprenant now has two games under his belt as the Stingers offensive coordinator. Those games may not have gone the way the team would have liked, starting out with two losses, but Surprenant knows that this is a young team trying to rebuild their program.

Head coach Brad Collinson and Surprenant put an emphasis on recruiting fast and local players on the offensive side of the ball during the off-season to play in Surprenant’s Run-Pass option, or RPO, system.

“If you want to win [long term] it really depends on your recruiting class,” said Surprenant. “Coach Brad also put together a great coaching staff. The football world is a little community where everyone knows everyone and he surrounded me with a great staff.”

The RPO system is something relatively new to the Canadian football world. It’s a tough system to implement, as there are only three downs as opposed to the American game, where there are four downs where it’s a lot easier to use it in.

“The biggest adjustment is that it’s three downs here instead of four like in CEGEP,” Surprenant said. “But at the end of the day, it’s still football so it’s not that difficult to adapt.”

Stingers offensive coordinator Alex Surprenant was hired back in February 2019. Photo by Laurence BD

Another major change to the offence is that they also use a no-huddle system. That means that quarterback Adam Vance gets the signal from the sideline and yells it to the rest of the team from the line of scrimmage without going into a huddle. This allows the offence to move at a faster pace.

“My inspiration comes from the [Kansas City] Chiefs, [New England] Patriots, and the Oregon Ducks from back in the day,” said Surprenant. “Those offences are the best at getting to the line quickly and using their speed.”

The players aren’t the only ones excited about the new offence. Collinson says he was also very excited to see the system that Surprenant put into place during training camp.

“Any time you put in something new, you get excited and want to learn it,” said Collinson. “There’s a lot of diversity in what we’re doing too, like RPO and zone-read options. Alex ran a really good offence at the CEGEP level and we’re seeing some of it here.”

The first two games of the season proved to be tough ones for the offence for many different reasons. But that is to be expected with a young team trying to find its identity. However, these are not excuses for the coaching staff.

Against Les Carabins de l’Université de Montréal, there were multiple missed opportunities by the Stingers to advance the ball down the field due to penalties and dropped passes that would have extended the Stingers offence’s time on the field.

“If we played our best game and lost 10-3, we would have been happy,” said Surprenant. “But after watching film, we’re not happy. We had a lot of missed opportunities at the end of the game that would have given our team a way better chance at winning.”

Whatever the reason may be for the dropped passes in that game, the Stingers could revisit what worked well for them. They moved quickly in their no-huddle offence and kept the Carabins, a top three team in the country, on their heels for a lot of the game whenever they got into an offensive rhythm.

However, this past week against McGill, their game plan got away from them. It started off with a four play offensive drive that ended in an Andrew Stevens punt. McGill caught the Stingers flat footed on defense and drove 82 yards in just three plays and never looked back.

A big part of any offence is the offensive line. Vance and his running backs can only do their jobs if the offensive line gives them the time to make plays. In the first quarter, starting left tackle Damien Constantin went down with an injury and did not return.

For right-handed quarterbacks, such as Vance, the left tackle is the most important position on the line as that position protects the quarterback’s blindside.

“It’s tough to overcome,” said Vance after Friday’s loss. “We don’t have a lot of depth [at the position]. It’s a really big blow.”

The Stingers found a bit of a rhythm in the second half but not enough to mount a comeback, as it was too little too late.

“We came [to McGill] and thought they’d roll over, but last time I checked we haven’t won a game in something like 300 days so we can’t be thinking like that,” Vance said.

The Stingers still have six more games this season to right their wrongs and get the offence on track. It is hard to temper expectations after such a strong effort in their first game against the Carabins, but they are still a very young team with a lot to learn, according to Surprenant.

“Coach Brad told the guys, ‘we need to learn how to win. You’re not born a winner and nothing is given.’ It’s a hard process but we know we will get to where we want to be,” said Surprenant.


Feature photo by Laurence BD


Poli Savvy: How Campaign Slogans Are Identically Different

In the last weeks of August, both Liberals and Conservatives unveiled their TV ads and campaign slogans, ahead of the Oct. 21 vote.

While Trudeau’s campaign decided to go with “Choose forward,” Tories went for “It’s time for you to get ahead,” which you can only imagine fueled many waves of laughter on Twitter, as they are now just one typo away from being ridiculed. For Elizabeth May’s Green Party, “Not left. Not right. Forward together” is their campaign slogan. The NDP has yet to reveal theirs.

Do they all sound the same to you? Truthfully, as we live in a time where scrolling and swiping quickly is generally the way we consume our information, slogans will sadly end up being the only piece of the political puzzle voters acknowledge when heading to the polls.

Yet, the difference is there. What often sounds either like a call for action or an embarrassing pickup line can actually make or break an election.

“The Conservatives are talking about putting individuals ahead, while the Liberal’s forward movement revolves around government and country – ‘you’ versus ‘we,’ if you like,” wrote national columnist Susan Delacourt in The Star. 

Words are charming, yet very dangerous as they hide an entire platform. And as Canadians head to the polls in October, forward or together, there will be no coming back.


Graphic by Victoria Blair


Stingers Drop Season home opener in close contest against Carabins

Concordia Stingers lost to Université de Montréal Carabins in the first game of the 2019-20 Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec (RSEQ) university football calendar.

Both teams were looking to find their rhythm, but only one touchdown was scored and missed plays cost points for both teams.

Despite the loss, the Stingers finished the match with 266 yards gained, compared to 215 for the Carabins. The team also saw a touchdown called back in the second quarter because of a penalty. Stingers head coach Brad Collinson said his team needs to learn how to win those types of games.

“It doesn’t come easy, especially against a great team like the Carabins,” Collinson said. “They have a great defence, on paper the best in the country. We had a couple of costly penalties in the second half, but it’s a process.”

Collinson said his team wanted to show people they were not to be taken lightly.

“We saw [votings] for this week and everyone picked Montreal,” Collinson said. “We wanted to send the message today that we were there. We’re going to work hard every day and won’t skip a step.”

The Stingers’s offence was led by rookie receiver Jeremy Murphy, who gained 95 field yards in five receptions, including the longest reception of the match with 43 yards.

Murphy said he felt good in his first game with the Stingers, although he would’ve preferred to start the campaign with a win.

“We all know they’re a big team, but we’re not scared,” Murphy said. “They’re physical and that’s how they impose their [game style]. They adapted well and we had to do better. We’re just trying to play football like we’re supposed to do. Whoever comes up against us, we just try the best we can.”

The Stingers will play McGill on Aug. 30 at 4 p.m. at the Percival Molson Stadium.


Archive photo by Mackenzie Lad

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