Edited by Montreal writers Marianne Ackerman and Elise Moser, The Rover's raison d'etre is to provide a new online forum for high quality arts and book reviews.
With the steady decline in review space in newspapers and magazines, coupled with increased creation in all areas of the arts, the need for an outlet like this has become all the more pressing. As Ackerman put it to the audience at last Thursday's official launch at Montreal's Sala Rosa, you know the old conundrum of the tree falling in the forest. Well, a book given no critical review suffers a similar fate.
A look at the roster reveals some pretty significant names: reviewers include Mark Abley, Heather O'Neill, Carolyn Marie Souaid, Maxianne Berger, Tess Fragoulis, David Homel, Roger Sauls and, well, yours truly. (My two book reviews can be found here.)
At this point, the writers are unpaid. Hopefully, with advertising and more fundraisers like last Thursday night's at Montreal's Sala Rossa, which attracted well over 100 people at $10 a crack, that will change.
I was (as you can induce) at that lively event. The music -- all local musicians -- was extraordinary. One up-and coming group that took my fancy was Sweet Mother Logic, an instrumental ensemble that blends classical stains of two cellos with pop/rock drumming , organ and synth, acoustic bass, jazzy electric guitar, and in this concert, guest artists playing assorted clarinets, sax, & trumpet. I bought their EP. It hasn't left my CD player since. Have a listen.