Badass, ferocious, banging and thunderous

Montreal DJ Kid Koala brings his rock project The Slew to Winnipeg

  • The Slew, a band formed by Montreal turntablist Kid Koala, features Chris Ross and Myles Heskett, the former rhythm section of Grammy Award-winning Australian rock band Wolfmother. – Jazz Winnipeg

Famous for his use of multiple turntables during live sets, Montreal-based turnablist Kid Koala is currently on tour in support of his latest album, 100%.

Kid Koala, whose name is Eric San, began the project four-and-a-half years ago, along with Dynomite D (Dylan J. Frombach). San and Frombach first met on a Beastie Boys tour in 1998. They were approached to work on the project together initially as the soundtrack to a documentary film. Though the film was abandoned, the two had already done so much work on the project that they weren’t willing to give it up.

Performing under the name The Slew, Kid Koala and Dynomite D are also joined by Chris Ross and Myles Heskett, the former rhythm section of Grammy Award-winning Australian rock band Wolfmother.

The quartet will bring 100% to the Pyramid Cabaret on Thursday, July 1 when they play the venue as part of the Winnipeg International Jazz Festival.

100% was given away online ahead of the first tour San and his band mates embarked on to promote it, with a limited number of albums for sale at shows. It received such an overwhelming demand after the tour that 100% is now being released to record stores by Kid Koala’s longtime label, Ninja Tune. The album is described as an “iconic rock turntable experience” and translating the album into a live setting will be something to see.

The Slew album is a rock album and The Slew live show is a rock show. It’s pretty undeniable.

Kid Koala

“We’re going to do a live interpretation of the album on six turntables, bass, drums and keyboards,” San said by e-mail from Australia. “All the blues vocals, harmonicas, guitar bits, etc. will be cut into the mix off of records by myself and DJ P-love while the bass, drums and keyboard parts will be handled by Chris and Myles. We’ve cut 80 custom records for the show and built special skip-resistant turntable stands because it’s a rock show.”

San couldn’t be more excited about the work he’s done with Ross and Heskett for The Slew.

“They are such a badass rhythm section. It’s pretty ferocious,” he said. “They play with so much feel and groove. Banging drums and thunderous bass tones. It totally rocks. They make the scratching part of the show so much fun for Paolo and I.

“The Slew album is a rock album and The Slew live show is a rock show,” he added. “It’s pretty undeniable with Chris and Myles on board.”

Published in Volume 64, Number 26 of The Uniter (May 27, 2010)

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