Guest Curator

We're delighted to announce that seminal art rock band Deerhoof will be joining us as guest curator of Sled Island 2018!

Each year, Sled Island’s guest curator puts their stamp on the festival through special programming choices and with their presence at the event. Deerhoof’s curatorial selections will join more than 250 additional bands, comedy, film and art chosen by the festival in over 35 venues across Calgary from June 20 - 24, 2018. The first wave of their picks is below, with more to be announced this spring.

Cherry Glazzer (Los Angeles, CA): This garage-pop band is a perfect mix of lighthearted wit, bubbly guitar riffs and versatile vocals that usually tend towards a shriek.

empath (Philadelphia, PA): A raucous indie band that finds harmony in a thick, distorted cloud of noise rock, contrasting angelic vocals with fiery drums and guitars.

Eucademix (New York, NY): Eucademix is the solo electronic improv performance of Yuka Honda (co-founder of Cibo Matto). Eucademix will perform on a special bill that also includes Tyondai Braxton.

Guerilla Toss (New York, NY): An angular, rhythmic punk band that manages to slide between noise and funk in equal measure. Their live shows feature extended reimagination of their already out-there sound.

Prissy Whip (Los Angeles, CA): An erratic no wave/noise punk band that tears apart traditional song structure in a headfirst swan dive into in the unknown.

Shabazz Palaces (Seattle, WA): Palaceer Lazarro (aka Butterfly of Digable Planets) and Tendai Maraire make a glorious return to Sled Island after six years out in the world. Their cosmic futurism and dynamic live performance has only gotten better since then.

Solid Freex (Madison, WI): A breakneck-paced garage-punk band made up of a father and his two sons.

Tyondai Braxton (New York, NY): A composer working in generative new music, Tyondai Braxton has cultivated a specialized vision for composition based on time spent as a member of Battles, composing for Kronos Quartet, exhibiting at the Guggenheim and more.

Wye Oak (Baltimore, MD): An indie-rock duo that has been pushing beyond their structural limitations for a decade. They've explored dream pop, strains of folk, and have a new album out this spring that we expect to only broaden our understanding of their sound.

In addition, Deerhoof will perform at the #1 Legion (116 7th Ave. SE) on June 22, 2018. Sled Island passes grant access (subject to capacity) and are currently available at, Sloth Records (736B 17th Ave. SW) and Lukes Drug Mart (112 4th St. NE). Single tickets will be available in spring 2018.

About Deerhoof

Deerhoof serve as Sled Island 2018 guest curator on the eve of the 25th anniversary of their chameleonic journey as a juggernaut art-rock band.

Across 14 studio albums and numerous other ventures, the unpredictable Deerhoof have kept listeners on their toes with a static shock of mutation at every turn. To capture the full scope of their output would require one to write a book, and we expect one day somebody will do just that.

For now, let’s take a look at a few snapshots along the highlight reel. They’ve recorded sessions for the legendary John Peel, were selected by both Matt Groening (The Simpsons) and Sonic Youth to perform at All Tomorrow’s Parties (ATP), toured with acts like Radiohead and Wilco, had an album adapted into a ballet, collaborated with Questlove and a hell of a lot more. Starting to get the picture

One example of Deerhoof’s virtuosic versatility was their headlining set at Central United Church back at Sled Island 2010. The show predominantly featured one of the band’s core signatures: a brain-scrambling duel between voracious drums and minimalist, convulsing bass, guitar and vocals. After rearranging the audience’s insides, they closed out the set with a piano ballad so tender you could hear the C-Train gently whooshing by outside.

More recent is the group’s 14th album, 2017’s Mountain Moves. The highly collaborative work (Matana Roberts, Lætitia Sadier of Stereolab) was praised by Pitchfork as a “purposeful mosaic,” impressive in its breadth of genre-hopping and emphasis on melody.

Eight years on from their last Sled Island performance, we expect only the unexpected from a group that refuses to stall reinvention for even a moment.