It’s a Harvest King Xmas and I can’t hear what you’re saying
by Chris Morin
Harvest King Records Xmas Party
Punk rock and Christmas are incredibly strange bedfellows, but with Regina label Harvest King Records approaching their sixth annual holiday bash there’s obviously some kind of chemistry between the two.
Featuring bands such as Kleins96, Birch Hills and The Jump Off, Justin Ludwig — one of the founders of Harvest King — says the mini-festival isn’t just about providing a thrashy booze-up while people have time off work and school. It’s also created a new tradition for those in the punk and hardcore scene who play locally, and for those who come home for the holidays.
“It’s just one of the most fun nights there is all year,” says Ludwig. “The Christmas season is about family and community, and this is the party for those of us with a bond that runs very deep, but of course a great time for new friends and bands and social circles as well. Last year we even flew Liam [Bryant] in from the Sunshine Coast just so Molten Lava could play.
“The potluck, the gift exchange, at this point it’s all as much a part of the season for me as perogies.”
Harvest King Records began documenting Regina’s punk scene in 2009, with the first releases being the Amour Fou and Invasion split 7” and Molten Lava’s Sevens and Nines LP. Since then, the label has expanded their roster to include several other local groups as well as out-of-town acts, such as Winnipeg thrash band Terrorist.
And the label has plans for several new releases early in the new year.
“Royal Red Brigade is recording new material, which will be released on vinyl,” says Ludwig. “The Jump Off just released a new full-length in November. Those two bands, and Terrorist as well, all have tour plans for 2014.”
The first Harvest King Records Xmas show took place in 2008. This year’s event, Ludwig says, will have new bands and an official headlining act.
“The first couple years there wasn’t a headliner, and all the bands drew numbers at the start of the night to see what order the bands would play,” he says. “[This year] we asked Black Thunder to headline because we thought they’d bring the best party at the end of the night. But there’s no real ranking of bands above or below each other.”
The Harvest King Records Xmas Party is Saturday, Dec. 28 in the Exchange and the Club. Doors at 7. Tickets are $10 advance (at X-Ray Records) and $20 at the door ($10 with non-perishable food item donation). For more information visit culturalexchange.ca.