The article you just read was brought to you by a few thousand dedicated readers. Will you join them?

Thanks for coming by The Tyee and reading one of many original articles we’ll post today. Our team works hard to publish in-depth stories on topics that matter on a daily basis. Our motto is: No junk. Just good journalism.

Just as we care about the quality of our reporting, we care about making our stories accessible to all who want to read them and provide a pleasant reading experience. No intrusive ads to distract you. No paywall locking you out of an article you want to read. No clickbait to trick you into reading a sensational article.

There’s a reason why our site is unique and why we don’t have to rely on those tactics — our Tyee Builders program. Tyee Builders are readers who chip in a bit of money each month (or one-time) to our editorial budget. This amazing program allows us to pay our writers fairly, keep our focus on quality over quantity of articles, and provide a pleasant reading experience for those who visit our site.

In the past year, we’ve been able to double our staff team and boost our reporting. We invest all of the revenue we receive into producing more and better journalism. We want to keep growing, but we need your support to do it.

Fewer than 1 in 100 of our average monthly readers are signed up to Tyee Builders. If we reach 1% of our readers signing up to be Tyee Builders, we could continue to grow and do even more.

If you appreciate what The Tyee publishes and want to help us do more, please sign up to be a Tyee Builder today. You pick the amount, and you can cancel any time.

Support our growing independent newsroom and join Tyee Builders today.
Before you click away, we have something to ask you…

Do you value independent journalism that focuses on the issues that matter? Do you think Canada needs more in-depth, fact-based reporting? So do we. If you’d like to be part of the solution, we’d love it if you joined us in working on it.

The Tyee is an independent, paywall-free, reader-funded publication. While many other newsrooms are getting smaller or shutting down altogether, we’re bucking the trend and growing, while still keeping our articles free and open for everyone to read.

The reason why we’re able to grow and do more, and focus on quality reporting, is because our readers support us in doing that. Over 5,000 Tyee readers chip in to fund our newsroom on a monthly basis, and that supports our rockstar team of dedicated journalists.

Join a community of people who are helping to build a better journalism ecosystem. You pick the amount you’d like to contribute on a monthly basis, and you can cancel any time.

Help us make Canadian media better by joining Tyee Builders today.
We value: Our readers.
Our independence. Our region.
The power of real journalism.
We're reader supported.
Get our newsletter free.
Help pay for our reporting.
Music Picks

If You Can't Beat 'Em

Embrace the rainy blues with Vancouver's The Pack A.D.

By Elaine Corden 6 Mar 2008 |

Elaine Corden writes regularly about music and pop culture for The Tyee. You can read her blog, Dangerfield, or her other Tyee columns.

image atom
Ferocious, sludgy and dirty.

If you're at all like me, the past few months -- the letdown of January, and the long, sucking bummer of February -- have you a little blue. Maybe a lot blue. And while there are a number of ways to combat pre-spring S.A.D. -- a run, a vacation, a morphine drip -- there's something to be said for embracing your blues as well.

Should you choose this option, allow me to recommend the latest album from local duo The Pack A.D. as your soundtrack. Their first album proper (released on Mint Records), Tintype is a 16-track foray into raw, dirty blues, perfect for sulking, skulking, rowdiness and general bad-assery.

Comprised of two women, drummer Maya Miller and guitarist/vocalist Becky Black, Vancouver's The Pack A.D. is a force to be reckoned with. The easiest way to describe them is "The White Stripes with two powerful women instead of one," but they are so much more than that.

Tintype opens with the ferocious "Gold Rush," a sludgy affair that assaults the ears with drums and sticky riffs before Black's amazing vocal kicks in. Truly, Black has one of the most unusual female voices to emerge out of the city in some time. While a comparison to the world's most famous female blues belter, Janis Joplin, will be at the tip of everyone's tongue, Black's voice has shades of Robert Plant, and, most surprisingly, '70s-era Buddy Guy (back when he was still sexy as hell and living in symbiosis with his guitar). Meanwhile Miller's drums are spot-on -- aggressive when they need to be, restrained when restraint is called for.

While the album is more of piece than a single-by-single affair, the moodiest track on the record is "Bang" which starts off with the line "Take your gloves off / and fight like a man" and just gets more ornery from there, the guitar riff a haunting accomplice to Black's wail. I also suggest "What's up There," which is positively menacing, and "Got Up" (not available online), a quiet potboiler that recalls old-school bluesmen like Muddy Waters and Robert Johnson.

The Pack A.D. is off to South By Southwest next week to wow the music industry, so if you missed their tour kickoff at The Railway Club last Saturday night, you probably missed your last chance to see them in a small venue. And if that gets you down, well, proceed to the top for instructions on treating the blues.

Related Tyee stories:


Read more: Music

Share this article

The Tyee is supported by readers like you

Join us and grow independent media in Canada

Facts matter. Get The Tyee's in-depth journalism delivered to your inbox for free


The Barometer

Tyee Poll: Are You Preparing for the Next Climate Disaster?

Take this week's poll