I was walking outside in a storm, with wind and rain whipping my winter coat, when a fragment of a poem flickered through my mind. I stopped in my tracks. I hadn’t felt creative since my baby was born, since the pandemic began. I thought I was being lazy, I thought I wasn’t trying enough, I thought I was too tired to write, but it wasn’t that at all. I was just depressed. My creativity got sapped by a postpartum pandemic wartime depression. A depression that went unnoticed by myself because I hadn’t been sad. I was just numb. But from one day to the next, a switch flipped. And the fog suddenly dissipated.
You’re not crazy, you’re not bad,
You’re not lazy, you’re just sad.
Today, after the poem shot through me, I tried tearing down my wall of numbness. I opened the floodgates, braced myself and felt: joy. Not the sorrow I was expecting. And I know my baby noticed the change in me too. She looked at me as if to say, ‘Hey. I’ve missed you.’ I’ve been reeled in after being untethered for so long. I snapped out of my year-long depression to discover that being awake isn’t as bad as I feared it would be. That my daughter is magical. That her laugh could resuscitate my cold heart. That my husband’s lips still take my hiccups away and make me feel like I’m flying. That I might be ok.
I just finished a book, which chronicles the life-changing and exciting cross-Canada adventure we embarked upon last summer. The story is told from the perspective of our minivan, Lupita.
Although (like many people) I often suffer from debilitating self-doubt, I recently won a prize in an international competition for a short story I wrote, which gave me the boost of confidence I needed to work on and complete the travel novel during our very long winter. (Is it spring yet? I wish it were…)
With 2 weeks left in the campaign, our project is 65% funded.
You can support the campaign in many ways, even just by emailing or telling your friends.
Watch our Kickstarter video here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/983449135/lupitas-misadventures-across-canada
We’re fervent fans of Xania videos here at Silent Shout (remember the brilliant “Dance with the Robot” that was our third favourite visual in 2016?), and she’s done it again. “Y.O.U.”, which stands for your own universe, reimagines the Montreal-based rapper/producer as a faceless silhouette, covered in shifting projected patterns. She’s alone as she dances through the streets of Sheffield, an homage to those who embrace their individuality, creating their own worlds even while surrounded by a sea of others.
“Y.O.U.” is from 2015’s All Alone Together, available PWYC from Bandcamp.
The arc of my time in England began with me playing alongside Arctic Monkeys replicas and boys with guitars; I stood out. People didn’t know what to make of me. But the more I played, the more things clicked. My last show was packed with people singing along to my songs and I felt like all the hustle paid off, I was part of a beautiful group of local creatives.A year and a half in England, and Montreal has moved on like a jealous mistress. I have to squeeze my way back into the scene. When I first arrived in Sheffield, I had to decline offers for shows in Montreal, and now I’m declining shows in Sheffield.But, to be honest, I’ve been reconnecting with family and old friends and putting music to one side. I spent two exciting weeks in Mexico with family, a relaxing week in the country with friends. Although I feel a little overwhelmed by this city, it’s time to take it on. Inspiration is gathering like a storm in my rib cage.
Brand new music video for “Y.O.U. (Your Own Universe)”, from Montreal musician Xania, tells the story of a celestial creature exploring the UK…[read more: bucketlistmusicreviews ]
Life is anything but fragile. On our planet, some creatures have evolved to live in sulphuric acid. Some live in complete darkness with no eyes and skin white as chalk.
So when I think of the infinite Universe, I imagine all sorts of possibilities. Maybe some creatures live on a planet made of pure gold and lay in a reflective sun bath all day, with strands of grass for jewellery. Maybe some are invisible, making it easy to sneak up on prey. Maybe some have tunnels for faces, and can walk through eachother’s heads to listen to their thoughts. Maybe some are stuck in a time-loop, reliving the exact moment they were about to taste pancakes for the first time for all eternity. Whatever one can imagine, may exist. And more, beyond the scope of imagination, beyond our senses, beyond our colours.
I’ve been feeling shy lately, but I want to be more public about what I’ve been up to. After a small draught, I’m finally in the midst of a creative storm. The skeletons to 10 new songs are dancing in my computer, waiting to be fleshed out. They sound very different from previous albums, maybe I’m finally discovering the language of music and can be a bit more precise with my expressions. I’m very excited about it! When the album will be ready or released is still to be determined.
I’ve been playing lots of shows in eclectic places lately. An ethical Christmas market in a repurposed funeral home, a magical house party, a play about the sea where I performed as a tap-dancing jellyfish, an all-night rave. The Sheffield community is welcoming me into their down-to-Earth, hint-of-a-smile, cautiously-caring community. I’m finally beginning to thrive in their creative incubator.
Photos taken by Bionic Bobby at:
The Food Hall – (freecycling food community/events)
The Shipping Forecast– (comedy cabaret show at Dina)
Dutty Bass– (rainbow rave)
Check out my latest music video…
Far too many rappers rhyme about unimaginable excess. Few devote lyrics to describing debt and penny pinching. Xania Keane has no qualms about telling such tales of frugality and misfortune in her latest video, aptly titled “I’m Broke,” which is also a single from her latest album, All Alone Together. In the video she mops floors, attempts to buy pastries with spare change and defies the dollar bill, slinging clichés of typical rap videos in numerous other ways.
But of course the Montreal bred MC has always been unconventional. She doesn’t breakdance — she tap dances. She doesn’t rely on premixed samples in concert, instead looping those musical snippets herself into Kaleidoscopic synth arrangements that blend and blur like soothing hues.
Check out the Full Interview here: Cult Montreal Interview
I had a wonderful weekend performing in Sheffield and Leeds!
Saturday I played at Bank Street Arts surrounded by highly detailed paintings of dwarves. Joey MacPhail opened the night with some envious guitar and vocal skillz.
Last night I opened for Thomas Truax at the Brudenell Social Club. He invented his own band-mates out of old bicycle wheels, robotics and black magic. I saw him perform a couple years back in Montréal so it was wonderful to see him again and watch his new inventions accompany his beautiful songs!
Saturday May 14th- Xania + Joey MacPhail- Bank Street Arts (32-40 Bank St, Sheffield S1 2DS)
Sunday May 15th- Thomas Truax + Xania + Karl D’Silva- Brudenell Social Club (