Mike Petkau
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Mike Petkau

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Music

The best kept secret in music

Press


"Newcomer Petkau adds strings and atmospheric studio effects to the conventional semi-acoustic folk-pop record in what amounts to a succesful debut. File under artsy folk-pop."
(Bartley Kives, Winnnipeg Free Press)

"Winnipeg's Mike Petkau's worthy debut CD Parapet blends vintage prairie folk with subtle experimentation, not unlike the Fembots. The brain-dodging Dry, Bent Up starts out a sinister hush then soars into a chorus reminiscent of Psychadelic Furs' Love My Way."
(Vancouver Sun)

"Meandering between mellower acoustic guitar-based ‘alt-folk' and upbeat electrified pop/rock, Petkau’s impressive debut features some tasteful songwriting and is competently produced, recorded and mixed by Petkau (with help from a few talented friends). It’s in the quieter moments that the subtle percussion, trumpet, cello and electronic flourishes raise this engaging music above the din of the many lesser singer songwriters competing for our attention. This Winnipeg-based artist has talent worth keeping an eye (or ear) on."
(CJSW Radio, Calgary)

"The debut CD from local singer-songwriter Mike Petkau is a handsome calling card from and up-and-coming folk-rock artist. Largely self-produced (and self-performed, with the exception of some key guests), Parapet is an eclectic record tinged by frisky and intricate guitar work, veering from the Strokes-lite jangle of "Its A Chance You Gotta Take" (which has already found a happy home on campus radio) to the folky groove of "Blue & Red Lights." Although he's earned most of his performance chops as a solo artist, the band-oriented vibe laid down by Petkau and his cohorts suits him even better."
(Uptown Magazine)

"Mike Petkau writes enchanting and prairie-tinged indie-rock songs."
(CFCR Radio, Saskatoon)

"Mike Petkau, a singer-songwriter/record producer/film sound technician/painter says his art has taken him away from his Mennonite culture and into lyrics more relevant to a larger population. The guitar and piano soundscapes he paints often speak to his fascination with urban planning and architecture, the fabric of the city he calls home."
(Janine LeGal, Winnipeg Free Press)

"These songs are waaaaay cool."
(Joe Fingerote, CBC Radio host of Arts Encounters)

"Two young Manitoba singer/songwriters have forsaken the comfort of basement jam sessions for a mid-winter van tour that stops at The Grind on Friday night. Dave Quanbury, former guitarist for Tequila Mockingbird and now a solo artist, and Mike Petkau, a guitarist and pianist, are headed west across the frozen Prairie with a travelling sack of new material. Both are talented songwriters who have recently released solo debut CDs, Quanbury with No Vacancy and Petkau with Parapet. They decided to "freeze their assets for the love of live music," Quanbury said before hitting the road. "It was a tour we meant to do in December and it got bumped back a month, I'm anxious to get out there," he said."
(Mike Youds, Kamloops Daily News)

Article from Vue, Edmonton Weekly.
http://www.vueweekly.com/articles/default.aspx?i

Article from Gateway, The University of Alberta's newspaper.
http://www.gateway.ualberta.ca/backissues.php# VOL XCIII - ISSUE 29

Article from The Gauntlet, The University of Calgary newspaper.
http://gauntlet.ucalgary.ca/story/6326
- Various


Discography

Don't Say A Word will be released in May 2005 on Head In The Sand Records. Themes of silence, regret, and the inconsistency of human interaction dot a landscape filled by gritty, jangling guitars and electronic manipulations.

Parapet (2002)
Petkau's critically acclaimed debut EP, Parapet, features performances by Greg MacPherson, Mimi Orr, Vava Kolinski (Toronto's Evil Twins), Ryan Yurich (Sudbury's Nickelbender), and Joanne Lawton (London's Sirens) among others. A diverse album of acoustic impressionism, folksy soundscapes and driving rock-n-roll romance, Parapet announced a creative new voice from a creative city.

Teacup - s/t (2004)
"Teacup is my highly enjoyable side-project with poet Jan Braun. Spoken-word and rock-n-roll actually go together quite nicely, thank you very much. Limited Edition CD is available by mail-order only."

Compilations:

Head In The Sand Records & Friends
16. Petkau > "As A Prairie I Once Loved"


[Conifera Records] Conifera Records - Friends of the Forest Comp
15. Petkau > "I Claim These Streets"


Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

Petkau is standing next in line to wave Winnipeg’s flag as a hotbed for literate and crafty DIY songwriters. After five tours in the past year, he is readying a new full-length showcasing his penchant for the peculiar pop song and the morose lament.

How many broken relationships fall between the lines of a conversation that no one wants to have? How many times are we betrayed by another’s lack of confidence, by our city’s spinelessness, by our lover’s indifference? Like images, the true meaning of words is ultimately found in the negative-space. In what wasn’t said.

Don't Say A Word will be released in May 2005 on Head In The Sand Records. Themes of silence, regret, and the inconsistency of human interaction dot a landscape filled by gritty, jangling guitars and electronic manipulations. The songs are focused and poetic descriptions of the people and places around Petkau, alternating between driving indie-rock and hushed intimacy. But don’t be put off by any apparent bitterness. This album is surprisingly (even disarmingly) romantic – in a “getting-the-silent-treatment” kind of way.

Petkau's critically acclaimed debut EP, Parapet, features performances by Greg MacPherson, Mimi Orr, Vava Kolinski (Toronto's Evil Twins), Ryan Yurich (Sudbury's Nickelbender), and Joanne Lawton (London's Sirens) among others. A diverse album of acoustic impressionism, folksy soundscapes and driving rock-n-roll romance, Parapet announced a creative new voice from a creative city.

Petkau tours both solo and with his band: Dave Quanbury (bass) and Steve Martens (drums).

While all this hubbub goes on, Mike doubles as a record-label owner, recording engineer and producer. He has partnered with Juno-awardwinning producer Brandon Friesen to bring Head In The Sand Records to the national stage.

Petkau's grubby studio hands have been found twisting the knobs for Twilight Hotel, Mahogany Frog, Darren Day, Monica Schroeder, House of Doc, Jeremy Proctor and more.