Culture: Steve Reich, Planet Salt Spring & Bush of Ghosts

Music Steve Reich’s Drumming: It’s much easier to be annoyed by experimental minimalism than most other kinds of music; humans are pattern-seeking animals, and we like few things more than a reliable melody. Experimental minimalism comprises musical sounds, but the genre – of which composer Steve Reich is considered one of the high priests – feels less like “Love Me Do” than it does a hypnotic hybrid of a film score and sonic math. At this Vancouver show, Reich’s African-inspired Drumming (written for a nine-piece percussion ensemble, flute and female vocalists) will be performed. Feb. 3 and 4, Heritage Hall, musicon​

Audiobooks Planet Salt Spring: Salt Spring is not a planet, although the out-there hippie haven spins at a velocity and describes an orbit much different than the rest of the province. It’s the Gulf Island where Wayne Gretzky owns property and where, according to Arthur Black, longtime resident, the potholes are so old they have First Nations names. On this audiobook of observational comedy, Black – who for 19 years hosted CBC Radio’s Saturday morning staple, Basic Black – offers his thoughts on Gulf Island etiquette, how best to rob a home and overcoming Inukshuk fatigue in the run-up to 2010. There will be punning, dorkiness and general good fun. February 2009, $18.95 from Harbour Publishing,

Live from a Bush of Ghosts:
Can computers trap souls? In this “ghost story for the digital age,” a woman is haunted by people who have met their end online – a boy lured by a chat room predator, an Internet gambling addict – and whose spirits are stuck in discarded hard drives. Staged by local independent company See Seven, the multimedia Bush is a searching mélange of video, live music and dance that aims to conjure a ghost world that’s a physical, visual and aural feast. Feb. 4 to 15, Studio 16, seeseven.bc​.ca