The Two Twenty + YXE Music

Some have the global recession, market slump and large unemployment rates to blame for all of the troubles of the day. Others would say that larger politics and corporations are to blame. I say it’s from a lack of realistic vision.

Saskatoon has always had a liberal arts scene. Sporting an accepting and open minded attitude to the new digital economy and media.

So it is no surprise that the emergence of the Two Twenty has come. So what exactly is it?

The Two Twenty is a community of social entrepreneurs, innovators, artists and creative industries defining Saskatoon’s urban and cultural scene.

Given the time and energy, the major brains of today are finding the need to drive their own entrepreneurial spirit and their peers. The current market for shared workspace, skill sets, and networking opportunities is huge. And those with the passion to succeed, will take steps to take advantage of shared workspaces.

The space itself located on 20th street in Saskatoon, is highly functional and fluid. Open office designs, featured small businesses, artisans, robot makers, technical advisors, yoga space… It is an immense concept that cannot help to succeed. Check out their plans if you are a travelling business and need access to all the necessary office necessities. If you are a student and need that palce to get away to, just to finish off that paper or late night study, there’s a plan for you on it.

The Two Twenty is conveniently located at 220 20th Street West, Saskatoon. Along with a larger emerging arts community front for 20th street. Will have to stop by the aka Gallery and check their community of innovative networked artists. Saskatoon Techworks looks to be the emerging central hub for all you Tinkers, Inventors, Makers and Innovators. HardPressed brings custom apparel (Also featuring local Rogstad) and printing from just about everything.

At one point in time, I thought I was in BarcampYXE the sequel, but soon came to realize that the technical people and artistic go hand in hand. Ryan and Chris of Ominocity and BarcampYXE infamy were in fine form, checking the artists out, be sure to check their videos and info on their site. Hoover of the New Rockstar Philosophy was also in attendance. Chris de Jong also there to sample and bring big cheers.

After getting bodyslammed from Katrina German (also of BarcampYXE infamy) managed to snag some Paddockwood beer, and hung out with the ever elusive and exclusive Natalie Struck, discussed various subjects on music and influences, learning about new music and still one of the best ways for marketing is word of mouth. Tell your friends about her stuff. Also she is slated to do a show at Mystic Java closer to December. Stop by their for your last minute Christmas shopping caffeine fix and some great tunes. Keep an ear out for her, and rumor has it, she is This Close to getting her album out the door.

Great minds think alike. Great minds like to party alike.

And the Two Twenty was definitely opened up. Grand. Performances were scattered between three central areas, kept the crowd flowing. Saskatoon Slam  poetry and smaller duets in the front where the main office space is. Larger band performances in the back, and DJ beats and dance numbers in the downstairs events room.

Vaereo +Sarah Farthing both had qualities of a young Natalie Merchant, also if you were to throw some Lisa Loeb DNA in there. These two young ladies bring soulful and meaningful performances, guitars and violin. Some country influences also ring of east coast folk. A great duet team, follow them, tell your friends, buy their cd’s. Definitely a great collaboration that you won’t want to miss out on.

I was amazed and dumbstruck at the amazing dropped rhymes from EEKWOL. Suddenly I needed to wear neon. Slick transitions, amazing speed rants, sick rhymes, it wasn’t hip hop or rap. It was hip. It was hot. It was beat poetry 80’s style to the old school rhythm. You can find her on FB – Lindsay Eekwol Knight

Make Liars brought guitar rock, poetic lyrics, and a determined spirit to the stage. The guitar pickings were channeled through the roots of early surf rock into brilliant anthems. Close your eyes, don’t think and you are in a time where convertibles, poodle skirts, california coastlines ruled pop culture. Spatterings of influence can be heard from Rockabilly and some Heavier Alternative Rock. I’d like to know if the music comes first, or the lyrics. Or is it some kind of weird simultaneous occurance where one cannot exist without the other. Keep an ear out for them as well. Right now you can find them on Facebook.

Rounding out the night Violent Kin brought us the lost (and better) chapter of late 80’s and early 90’s rock. Great show visually, flash neon, high bulbs, and any stage show that has more than 2 mannequin heads is bound to be awesome. S.J. and Maygen Kardash fronted a great show, and easily blended synth with driving guitar riffs- Took me back to my high school days and felt like I found a new band on cassette. (Quiet you, I am that old…) Also got their full length CD entitled People. The live show was definitely more rock and heavier, but the CD does emerge a better portion of well used synth.

It was a brilliant night. The Two Twenty has definitely opened for amazing talent and already established brilliant companies in the heart of Saskatoon.  I’ve done my part, now do yours. Get over there and check them out.

I’m still writing,


(Also working on 3.5 hours sleep, if I missed something, I apologize, need something corrected, let me know, drop me a line. @pearcekilgour on twitter)