Highlights from spring music drops

The Music Editors of The Concordian share their most-listened releases from March & April.

Tabéa’s Picks:

Mount Kimbie – The Sunset Violent

Composed of Kai Campos, Dominic Maker, Andrea Balency-Beérn and Marc Pell, the glorious British band Mount Kimbie released their sixth album on April 5. This new project runs for 37 minutes and is a magnetic, cohesive, immersive and atmospheric body of work. The alternative, electronic and groovy flare of Mount Kimbie’s sound flows seamlessly over each song and its production quality across all nine tracks is stellar. The contrast of hearing different members singing the same song, for instance on “Fishbrain” with Andrea’s singing and Kai’s vocals, adds a lovely depth to the album. Moreover, being able to hear King Krule’s involvement in two separate songs is a delightful surprise for all listeners.

Trial Track: “Empty and Silent” (feat. King Krule)

Vegyn – The Road to Hell Is Paved with Good Intentions

Joe Thornalley, better known as Vegyn in the music industry and to electronic music lovers, dropped his sixth album on April 5. The London-based producer put together a beautifully 45-minute curated endeavour through 13 tracks. I love how some songs are solely instrumental and let Vegyn’s beat-making shine while others feature vocals from the likes of Léa Sen and John Glacier that only push the energy and meanings of the songs further. Some tracks play with the willful duality of lower and higher tempos and heavily charged production, while others are more minimalistic with ambient sounds. 

Trial Track: “Trust” (feat. Matt Maltese)

Mayfly – Killed My Innocence

Montreal-based duo Mayfly, composed of singer-songwriters Charlie and Emma, shared their latest project with the world on March 29. Labelled under Indie Pop, this EP includes five tracks and delivers moody, airy and pungent production style. The growth and decrease of the cadence and elements in the track “See Through” captivated my attention and encouraged total immersion from the very beginning, all the way till the end. The calculated but experimental and cohesive project of these fellow Montrealers is definitely to be added to your music library!

Trial Track: “See Through”

Stefano’s Picks:

Tyla – TYLA

Following the breakout success of “Water,” Tyla returns with her self-titled debut album, a full offering of tuneful Afrobeats tracks. The album is filled with infectious instrumentals and alluring vocals from the South African starlet, many of which are Amapiano tracks with the same foundation as “Water.” The Skillibeng and Gunna-assisted “Jump” is exceptionally catchy, with its heavy Amapiano bass stabs combined with traditional Afrobeats percussion. From the high notes on the bridge to the understated chorus, the song succeeds as a bouncy, tropical, summery cut. Tyla is poised for success, and her debut album fully displays her capability to make catchy hits characterized by angelic, harmonious singing.

Trial Track: “Jump” (feat. Gunna & Skillibeng)

MIKE & Tony Seltzer – Pinball

Pinball sees underground rapper MIKE taking a stylistic leap away from his usual, abstract hip-hop style, instead opting for a mainstream sound by teaming up with producer Tony Seltzer. The project is an upbeat, fun listen that combines trap, drill, West Coast and Detroit hip-hop production with melodies that are lighthearted and ethereal. “On God” is a moodier cut that boasts a feature from Earl Sweatshirt who provides an addictive hook with his deadpan, hypnotic delivery. Tony Shhnow and MIKE perfectly match his energy, and the trio offer an addictive, atmospheric cut that is short, sweet and guaranteed to get repeat listens.

Trial Track: “On God” (feat. Earl Sweatshirt & Tony Shhnow)

Bryson Tiller – Bryson Tiller

Bryson Tiller’s self-titled effort is his fourth studio album, his first since A N N I V E R S A R Y in 2020. The project is brighter and more rhythmic than some of his signature, moodier projects, dabbling in a series of genres. The album combines R&B balladry with melodic takes on drill rap and Jersey club, plus ventures into Afrobeats. Per usual, his singing performances are intact and balanced with his brand of melodic rapping. “No Thank You” is a personal favourite, with a light, dreamy, bouncy hip-hop instrumental that Tiller sings and glides over effortlessly.

Trial Track: “No Thank You”


An ode to spring (in all of its forms)

Spring may be unpredictable, but it’s still my favourite season.

Is it sundress season yet? I thought it was, until that glorious snowstorm we all woke up to on Thursday. Before that, I had set out to write an ode to spring in honour of the frost finally thawing, but the weather reports laughed in my face. “Is spring still your favourite season?” they wondered, cackling and rubbing their hands together. Despite the unpredictability of the season, I will defend spring to the end. 

Okay, so maybe the haters of the season have a point. Even once the snow finally melts (and stays away for good) it isn’t the easy-breezy sunshine and green grass transformation we see in cartoons. It’s more like brown slush, ground littered with ancient cigarette butts, and fossilized dog sh—well, I think we all know what I’m talking about. 

The springs of my childhood outside of the city weren’t much prettier, to be fair. The snow piles sometimes didn’t fully disappear until June, and I have vivid memories of flooded roads and the soccer field turning into a swamp.

Where is the glamorized version of spring we desperately need, the one with bees and flowers and blooming buds that all the poets are so obsessed with? That version of the season often doesn’t fully come around until May or June, by the time we’re already a couple of months deep into spring. March and April are really more of an awkward transition, an uncomfortable dance between winter and the vague promises of summer. 

Still, the glimpses of sunlight make it all worth it. What I love about spring is the chase: the exhaustion of winter and the tension of constantly checking the weather, followed by the thrill of finally being able to stash the winter coats. There truly is no better feeling than the first true feeling of spring air. Not only can you breathe better, but also the joy is palpable. Everyone can attest to the weight that gets lifted when winter finally passes. There’s an undeniable mood boost that hits at the end of seasonal blues and brings droves of hibernators out into the thawing parks.

Not only that, but we also get to witness the days get longer and longer. The joy of not being plunged into darkness at 4 p.m.! More sunlight means more Vitamin D and overall health improvements—both physical and mental. 

And sure it might be a little while until the flowers bloom, but the snow right now will only make the wait more worth it. Soon the icicles will melt from the trees, and you know what comes next. There’s nothing cuter than buds on the trees—sure they aren’t proper leaves, but they’re trying to be, and I think that should be enough. 

My strongest case for spring though is absolutely indisputable, no matter what anyone else says: the best concerto in Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons is Spring. I will not be taking arguments; this is a fact, not an opinion. So here’s my advice to you: to fully embrace the beauty of spring, throw open your windows (when the weather permits), blast some Vivaldi, and trust that the spring is here for real. 


15 things to do this April

Spring is in the air, and you can feel the city slowly coming back to life. Here are some things you can do to help you wake up from hibernation.

1. MFF Night Market  

What: A nighttime market featuring Montreal artists and live performances 

When: April 5 and 19 from 6 to 10 p.m. 

Where: Le Frigo Vert

2. Comedy Carnival  

What: Nights filled with songs, laughs and food. Sounds like a good time!

When: Every Thursday from 10 to 11:30 p.m. until May 3

Where: 2015 Rue Crescent, third floor

3. Conférence-Débat Upop Montreal 

What: If a classroom setting just isn’t for you, try joining in on one of these events to learn about life on Earth 

When: April 5, 19 and 26 from 7:00 to 9:30 p.m.

Where: La Brassée, 2522 Rue Beaubien Est

4. Shiny Disco Ball Dance Party 

What: Have you ever felt like you were born in the wrong era? Well, for one night you can party like it’s the 1970s at the Shiny Disco Ball. 

When: April 8 at 8 p.m. 

Where: Plaza Centre-Ville 777 Boulevard Robert-Bourassa

5. Blue Metropolis Literary Festival 

What: This year is the 25th anniversary of the Blue Metropolis Literary Festival, and they’re hosting virtual and in-person events revolving around literature and writing workshops. 

When: April 12 to 30

Where: Events are all virtual until the April 27, where the in-person festival takes place at Hotel 10 Sherbrooke St. W

6. Le Grande Braderie de Mode 

What: Also known as the Big Fashion sale, this semi-annual clothing sale features some of Quebec’s most prominent names in the fashion world. 

When: April 13 – 16 

Where: Marché Bonsecours  

7. Trek Boucherville Roulez et Réparez 

What: A chance to try out different bicycles while learning to upkeep and repair them at the same time. 

When: April 15 from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m.

Where: Trek Bicycle Montréal Griffintown, 291 Rue de la Montagne, Montréal, Canada

8. ToyCon Montreal   

What: A convention that displays the latest action figures, collectables and comics. Head over in your favourite cosplay and see what you can find. 

When: April 15 – 16 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Marriott Montreal Airport Courtyard 7000 Place Robert-Joncas

9. Festival Vues d’Afrique 

What: A festival that consists of themed days focusing on different cultures. It features films, art exhibits, food and round table discussions on a variety of topics. 

When: April 20 – 30

Where: 100 R. Sherbrooke E Bureau 3100,

10. Montreal Green Tech Festival 

What: A weekend that showcases the newest technological advances in green technology, as well a special showcase event on electric vehicles. 

When: April 21 – 23

Where: Olympic Stadium

11. Plural Contemporary Art Fair 

What: This event shows off some of the best contemporary art from across the country with a mix of virtual and in-person events.

When: April 21 – 23

Where: Grand Quay of the Port of Montreal 

12. Terra Concert  

What: A one-hour concert that focuses on the environment as a tribute to earth day

When: April 22 from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Where:  Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours Chapel 400 Rue Saint Paul Est

13. Vegapalooza 

What: Celebrate springtime at Vegapalooza, where you can try vegan foods and buy vegan products.  

When: April 29 – 30

Where: Maison du développement durable 50 Rue Sainte-Catherine Ouest

14. SAT Cabane a Sucre Experience 

What: An immersive and unique sugar shack experience that was a collaborative project put together by different Quebecois artists. 

When:  March 30 – April 29 

Where: 1201 Saint Laurent Blvd

15. The Belgo Building 

What: The Belgo building features 27 free galleries and installations open to the public.

When: The building is open every day from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. but each installation has their own opening hours

Where: 372 Saint-Catherine St. W

Bonus: WWF’s Climb for Nature 

What: If you’re feeling adventurous and looking for a challenge, you can partake in the WWF’s climb for nature. 

When: April 15 – 16

Where: Metro Toronto Convention Centre Hall C, North Building.


Our beloved groundhog has passed away before making his prediction

What does that mean for spring?

When Feb. 2 rolls around, we all come together to celebrate Groundhog Day. Whether you partake in making a prediction or not, it’s always fun to hear what the predictions might be. 

Some of you might find yourselves asking, why do we have Groundhog Day? 

Well to begin, Groundhog Day falls right in between the winter solstice and spring equinox. In many different cultures, Feb. 2 brought many events of various significance, the most popular being the event celebrated in Christianity. 

Christians celebrated Candlemas, which was a feast that commemorated the presentation of Jesus at the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. If the weather around Candlemas was sunny, Christians believed that there would be 40 more days of snow.

According to the History channel website, the first official Groundhog Day was celebrated on Feb. 2, 1887, in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. The celebration was the ingenious idea of the local town’s newspaper editor Clymer Freas.

Freas at the time sold a group of groundhog hunters and businessmen, known as the  Punxsutawney Groundhog Club, on the idea. 

At first, the annual Groundhog Day festivities took place at a site called Gobbler’s Knob. Nowadays thousands of people flock to this site in Punxsutawney for Groundhog Day. 

But unfortunately in our neck of the woods here in Quebec, tragedy has struck this Groundhog Day. Fred la Marmotte passed away on Feb. 1, the night before he was supposed to give his prediction.

According to Global News, when the organizer of the event at Val d’Espoir, Roberto Blondin, went to wake Fred up during the night, he wasn’t showing any signs of life. 

Blondin explained to the crowd at Val d’Espoir that Fred most likely passed away during hibernation. 

The celebration of Groundhog Day still went forward despite the tragic turn of events. A group of volunteer children came in and made the prediction in front of the crowd at Val d’Espoir in Quebec. They predicted six more weeks of winter.

Close to Quebec in Ontario, Wiarton Willie predicted an early spring from a plexiglass box on stage in front of a big crowd.

In Nova Scotia, Shubenacadie Sam also predicted six more weeks of winter. She ventured out of her enclosure at the Wildlife Park and saw her shadow.

Next year, the tradition of Groundhog Day will continue with Fred la Marmotte’s successor, Fred Junior.


Art event roundup: spring edition

By Ashley Fish-Robertson & Véronique Morin 

Here are nine noteworthy events that are worth keeping on your radar!

With the end of another school year approaching and the onset of warmer weather, more people will be flocking to the city’s cultural venues. As The Concordian wraps up their last print issue of the school year, our arts editor and assistant arts editor share nine events to kick off springtime.   

Photo by Catherine Reynolds

Infographic by Simon Pouliot

Getting vitamin D is not as hard as you think

Here are some small things to add a bit of sun in your day-to-day life

The grass is starting to grow beneath the shrinking piles of snow, the flowers are awakening from their long winters’ nap, the air has a slight hint of manure. Yes, spring is here!

When spring comes around, the craving for fresh air and sun is always running high. This is completely natural, as stated in an article by NBC; humans tend to “hibernate” for the winter by staying in. This leads to us awakening from our slumbering and groggy selves as spring rolls in.

Giving in to spring’s good looks can be hard as it tends to go hand in hand with the busiest time of the semester. But the fresh air isn’t as out of reach as it may seem, as you don’t need to dedicate an entire day to soak up the benefits of the sun.

Experts say as little as 10 to 15 minutes outside can lift your mood, improve your immune system and help you sleep. (Which you definitely still need to do, even during finals). A lot of these benefits are related to how the sun boosts your serotonin levels, otherwise known as the “happiness hormone.”

One of the best ways to feel those rays is to sunbathe! Have you ever seen your dog or cat wander the house and sit in a tiny ounce of sunlight that is beaming into the room? Well, they have the right idea. Sunbathing is one of the simplest ways to enjoy UV rays and is often overlooked. It takes next to no effort and can be done from nearly anywhere: your balcony, backyard, a park, or even just next to a window.

While you’re out there taking it all in, you don’t have to sit around and do nothing. You can always take that growing pile of books outside with you and set up an outdoor office. Sunlight improves your mood and your creativity levels, according to an article in Time Magazine. This would put you in a better state of mind to study.

If outdoor lounging or studying doesn’t quite interest you, then find a different time of day to squeeze some sunlight in, like lunch time. You can always have a little picnic at a local park or even in your backyard. It doesn’t have to be a whole setup with a blanket (although every once in a while it is really fun). You can just walk to your favourite nearby spot and take some time to enjoy your food.

With the end of the semester comes high stress, and 15 minutes in the sun may not be enough to soothe your anxieties. You can always go for a walk. Students get told this millions of times a day, but that just shows how helpful and easy it could be. Going for a walk is a triple whammy: it will allow you to enjoy the sun you have been craving, move your body and take a break from your workspace.

An article in the New Yorker mentions how going for a walk can boost your mood: “Because we don’t have to devote much conscious effort to the act of walking, our attention is free to wander.” By allowing your mind to wander, a lot of those worries will be put on the back burner for a bit and reduce stress levels.

Spring for some means stress and finals, but it is also a time of new beginnings and growth. Allow these ideas to inspire you to make some small changes in your day to enjoy spring’s warmth and brightness. All you need is 15 minutes.


Graphic by @the.beta.lab


The health benefits of spring

Spring offers people fresh ways to stay healthy after a long and cold winter

Winter will always hold a special place in Canadians’ hearts, especially because of traditional northern activities like skiing and skating, but the season’s harsh weather and shorter days can mentally and physically drain even the best of us.

With spring officially underway on March 20, people can finally wave goodbye to a long winter unlike any other. As the last remnants of snow and ice melt away in the coming weeks, a fresh open-air canvas will once more be at everyone’s disposal.

Amidst troubling times, it’s important for people to take advantage of the rejuvenating weather that is upon us and reap its rewards on our overall health.

The beginning of spring means the return of outdoor workouts

Fitness enthusiasts, who have been largely confined to home workouts for months, finally found something to look forward to when the Quebec government announced gyms would be permitted to reopen on March 26.

For those who are not so eager to resume regular indoor training in public spaces, spring will allow for several outdoor activities to start anew.

Running and biking will continue to serve as accessible and effective workouts that can be performed anywhere, anytime. Alternatively, golf and tennis, both of which saw an uptick in popularity last year as relatively COVID-safe sports, will again serve as viable fitness options for those who want to best shield themselves from the virus.

Finally, calisthenic workouts and yoga routines that require minimal equipment can now be performed outside, providing some much-needed variety to these exercises that often get tedious from home.

Spring can also have a lasting effect on one’s mental health

The “winter blues” is a common issue that affects people’s mood and energy levels that stems from the short and cold winter days, which can lead people to spend unhealthy amounts of time indoors. Over the course of a few months, the negative effect on people’s overall health can be drastic.

Mixed with the limited in-person interactions with family and friends in recent times, the strenuosity of this year’s winter on people’s mental health has been amplified. Fortunately, the warm weather, sunny days, and fresh air can help dispel some of these common problems.

Spring gives people new opportunities to alleviate mental stress by socializing with their loved ones. People who are less fond of working out can still reap the health benefits by simply basking in the sun with others and absorbing vitamin D, which can go a long way when climbing out of an extended wintertime rut.

More daylight means more time when we need it

Having to set the time forward may leave you waking up exhausted the following day, but the long-term benefits of an extra hour of sunlight easily make up for the minor drawback.

Humans are unconsciously inclined to rest when it’s dark and be productive when it’s light. As the spring steadily dissipates into the summer, the amount of time we get to spend in the daylight will only increase.

Being able to shed layers of clothes lets us feel the sun directly on our skin, which can have a long-lasting, constructive effect on our overall health.


Photos by Christine Beaudoin

Collage by Kit Mergaert

Student Life

Textbooks down, summer reads up!

Concordia students recommend some good summer reads

Beauty Tips from Moose Jaw: Travels in Search of Canada by Will Ferguson

Press photo

This book is part humorous travelogue, part personal memoir, part cultural history—and overall, undeniably Canadian. Based on three years of cross-country travel and a lifetime of exploring his native country, author and travel writer Will Ferguson showcases Canada’s deeply-ingrained diversity and uncovers dozens of tales that have slipped through the cracks of Canadian history textbooks. The author’s undeniable passion and respect for history is infused in his historical accounts, which are given colour and intrigue by his witty narrative voice and travel anecdotes. History has never been more entertaining and digestible. Each chapter in this book could be its own short story, which makes this book ideal for stop-and-go readers, and allowed Ferguson to pack a wide variety of content into 332 pages.

Beauty Tips from Moose Jaw is a fitting read heading into the summer of Canada’s 150th anniversary—it is nostalgic, amusing and emanates a feeling of unity. “Canada is more than just a country,” Ferguson writes. “It is a sum of its stories.”

By Katya Teague (head copy editor)

Best in Travel 2017  by Lonely Planet

Yes, you read correctly. I am reviewing a Lonely Planet book. That can only mean one thing—it’s really, really good. I was still trying to overcome a severe case of wanderlust when I stumbled upon this book. Twenty bucks later, it was mine. I devoured it—and not just the food porn and the listicles. The whole, entire thing. With summer fast approaching, this book is perfect if you’re planning on jetting off, but have no clue where to. The book offers up unique ideas for up-and-coming destinations that aren’t (yet) overcome by tourism and over-priced expeditions. The book is divided into sections, going in-depth on 10 countries, 10 regions and finally, 10 cities that are must-sees in 2017. Supported by beautiful photographs, maps, itineraries and snippets of history, the detail and honesty in the guide is impressive.

By Danielle Gasher (life editor)

Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín

Press photo

Set in the 1950s, Tóibín’s novel follows Eilis Lacey’s journey to America from Ireland. With no job or marital prospect for her in her hometown, the young woman accepts an offer to move to Brooklyn, New York. There, a department store job and bookkeeping classes keep her busy. With so many stories about emigrating to America, Tóibín does nothing to sensationalize the experience. Although she does meet a love interest along the way, Eilis has an independence and strong spark to her throughout the novel that is charming and empowering. This is part of what makes her such a realistic and relatable character. Brooklyn gives insight on the reluctance and the struggles of moving away from home. Brooklyn is a slow-paced yet emotional coming-of-age story that explores Eilis’ move into womanhood and simultaneous move to a new country. Tóibín does not waste words—the story is simple, but with profound emotion.

By Mehanaz Yakub (staff writer)


Spring Awakening: The Musical revamps a classic

Singing about what it is like to be different

Spring Awakening: The Musical hit all the right notes, both literally and figuratively. From the talented actors to the musicality of this unconventional musical. It is currently presented at the Centaur Theater as part of the Brave New Looks program.  Christopher Moore and Gabrielle Soskin directed this adaption of the 2006 Tony Award winning musical based on the play by Frank Wedekind first premiered in 1906.

ere are Zachary Creatchman as Melchior and Gab Lubin as Wendla performing on stage. Photo by Joseph Ste-Marie

Spring Awakening: The Musical is a coming-of-age story in the shadows of a late nineteenth century German society that squeezes life out of the living. Two young friends, Melchior and Moritz, are faced with the pressures of becoming men, while Wendla and her friends navigate a world ruled by dangerous men and impulsive boys. Melchior and Wendla are grabbed by youthful love, while Melchior finds himself trapped in the confusion of growing up. Mistakes are made and decisions are taken, changing the lives of both the young and the old forever. The play deals with issues that were censored from public discourse in the past and are often scarcely tackled in an intelligible way in modern society, such as homosexuality, teenage sexuality and physical abuse. Although this material can be difficult to watch and will surely incite strong emotional reactions, Spring Awakening: The Musical talks about issues that are relevant to an inter-generational and widely diverse Montreal population.

Persephone’s revamped production takes this classic musical to new heights. The live music, the interplay of the lights, the energy of the cast, everything in this show makes you want to see it again. The audience can unmistakably feel the collaborative spirit of the ensemble throughout the play. Each actor can take us from sadness to hilarity in a heartbeat. Having seen the play before with almost the same cast, it was refreshing to see that the show was not at all a recycling of past success. This version was a huge development on an already strong foundation. Actors seemed really comfortable in their characters and the stories, lending a remarkable authenticity to the performance.

This is an excellent play for students of all ages and walks of life, particularly in our day and age. The play makes it easy for everyone to identify with the young souls seeking to understand the world around them, to feel love, to live life, to leave their mark. This musical leaves you with a feeling of hope for the future, a whole lot of relief from expelling welled-up emotions and a belly full of laughter for all the comedic genius behind what these young actors craft on the stage.

Spring Awakening: The Musical runs until Oct. 11 at the Centaur Theatre. Regular tickets are $35, student/senior tickets are $27. For more information, call 514-288-1229 or visit

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