After spending most of the last year out of town on tour, bassist Ashley Au is ready for some home time. She moved into a bright and spacious apartment overlooking the Manitoba Legislative Grounds in early September.
"I can see the Golden Boy from my room," Au says. "When I'm in bed, I can see his shining ass in the sky."
Other perks of the space includes overhearing local protests – Au says she'll check Twitter, put on pants and jump in if it's something good – and watching all kinds of wild and not-so-wild life.
"You can see squirrels. They're always chasing each other. You can see kids, after hours, trying to smoke weed in the corner by a tree," Au says.
"One thing I really like about this place is that I see so many people walking their dogs. The dog-to-person ratio is super high. That's more important to me than walkability score in an apartment … (There's) a lot of cuteness happening out there."
Inside, she keeps her space simply adorned while avoiding the pitfalls of minimalism. The living room is carefully populated with books, records, turntables and small mementoes that fit into Au's self-described "mid-century queer" aesthetic.
The second bedroom serves as a studio space, where her two guitars and four bass guitars (three electric, one upright) live. Au's currently playing with Carly Dow, who will be recording in the fall, Super Duty Tough Work (SDTW), Casimir Gruwel and John K. Samson.
"The bands that I do play with, I play with fairly consistently, it's just that they're kind of in different periods of activity, which is great, because it doesn't affect my schedule too much," she says.
Next up, Au will play an outdoor show with SDTW at the Winnipeg Centre Vineyard (782 Main St.) during Nuit Blanche, along with younger performers who STDW frontman Brendan Grey is mentoring through Studio 393.
"They're going to be rhyming, we're going to be playing. It's going to be sweet."
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