Skip to main content

Music What Austra’s Katie Stelmanis is watching, listening to and reading

Katie Stelmanis

Renata Raksha

The third album from Austra is Future Politics, a majestic electro-pop creation that calls for radical hope – "a commitment to replace the approaching dystopia," according to the Montreal band's leader Katie Stelmanis. The elegant, thoughtful singer-songwriter lets The Globe and Mail in on her current passions.

What she's watching: "I've just started watching Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale. It's one of my favourite books, so I had very high expectations for the series and am happy that it's successfully surpassed them. It is, however, taking me a lot longer to watch than a normal binge-worthy series because its sooo depressing, and I'm therefore finding the need to take a lot of breaks between episodes. If the premise didn't feel so eerily 'possible' in 2017, I would have probably finished ages ago."

What she's listening to: "Juana Molina recently put out an album called Halo that I've really been enjoying. We've been label mates on Domino for years and somehow I never managed to listen to her music until recently. Molina is an Argentine artist who has been making music for over 20 years, building a really interesting career as an experimental composer and years before that as a famous actress. I was really excited to learn that she is in her 50s, because I'm always scared that women in music have a much earlier expiry date than their male counterparts and like to be proven wrong as often as possible."

Story continues below advertisement

What she's reading: I'm currently reading Kindred, by Octavia E. Butler. I've been really into sci-fi lately, especially feminist and Afrofuturist titles. I recently saw an exhibit at the Huntington Library in Los Angeles devoted to Butler and have been searching for her books in every used bookstore I stumble upon while travelling ever since. My favourite parts of the exhibit were the letters of motivation she would write to herself, particularly the one in which she proclaims her desire for her readers to 'feel, feel, FEEL.'"

Katie Stelmanis and Austra play Beats, Breaks & Culture (Aug. 18 to 20, at Harbourfront Centre) on Aug. 19; Riverfest, Elora, Ont. (Aug. 18 to 20) on Aug. 20.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter