Wednesday, July 17, 2024

City sounds

Music Guide PLACER
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Our guide to keep you movin’ and groovin’ through your freshman year



Music is never hard to find in Halifax. It’s a way of life for many people in the city, and on any given night of the year, you can head downtown and be entertained.

The city is host to a truly eclectic assortment of sounds. If live music is your plan for the night, it’s never a question of which bar/club/restaurant/coffee shop/open space or abandoned building will have live music, but which one to choose. Whether you’re new to the city, or you’ve spent your entire life here, there is always something new to check out.

Don’t know where to start? Head down to Argyle Street, Halifax’s newly appointed “Entertainment District.” The colourful city block is filled with bustling night spots that are sure to have something for everyone.

Swing by The Seahorse on any given Thursday to have your mind blown by local funk favourites, the Mellotones. The bar is also host to an exceptional amount of concerts—artists such as Yukon Blonde, Great Bloomers and Dan Mangan have all graced the Seahorse stage this past year.

Next, head down to The Carleton, a pub that makes up for its small space by bringing in some big-name acts. Past performers have included Ron Sexsmith, Bahamas, and John K. Sampson.

Down on Barrington Street you’ll find the Khyber, an art space that hosts everything from flea markets, to art shows, to live music. The venue has been immortalized by local music hero, Joel Plaskett, with both his album and title song, “Down at the Khyber.”
If you decide to make the trek down to the south end of Barrington, be sure to check out Bearly’s House of Blues and Ribs. This local staple provides live blues three nights a week, plus weekend matinee performances and Wednesday night stand-up.

A little further north is Gus’ Pub, which hosts a wide range of bands in a somewhat dingy, yet ultimately cozy space. Experience some of Halifax’s best local offerings—including Bad Vibrations, No Flyers Please, and Hind Legs—as you acquaint yourself with the city’s remarkable music scene.

Halifax is also home to many music festivals throughout the year, including a jazz festival, a new summer concert series known as M FEST, and an urban folk festival. But for most young people, there is one week that surpasses them all: the Halifax Pop HPX Explosion, or HPX as it is more commonly known. HPX is held every fall and attracts dozens of bands from around the world. Last year’s festival saw acts such as The Hold Steady, Handsome Furs, and Ty Segall, as well as the city’s own In-Flight Safety, Duzheknew, and Sloan.

So whether you’re on the hunt for a little jazz, funk, folk, or something else entirely, Halifax is the place to be.


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