Countdown to Le Phoque OFF Festival – Interview with Q052

Quebec City’s Le Phoque OFF festival will be going virtual this year. It will be held from February 12th to 20th, and feature a number of Quebec’s alternative bands and musicians.

This year’s event creates a chance to reconvene and dissert about important issues such as the place of women in music, mental health problems, and the arrival of virtual shows in our industry.

For only $ 12, you’ll be able to access all the programming! Passes for sale HERE.

In advance of the festival, we are catching up with some of the talents. First, we spoke with Kristian North, then Yoo Doo Right, Ariane Roy, Sylvie, BAIE, l i l a, and Alexiane. Now, we’ve caught up with Q052. Check out their live video for “Let’s Talk” below, and find out more about Q052 via our mini-interview.

First off, care to introduce yourself to our readers?

My name is Quentin Condo aka Q052 and I’m a Mi’kmaq alternative/Hip Hop artist from the Community of Gesgapegiag in the Gaspesie, Quebec. I create music that addresses the ongoing issues that Indigenous People across Turtle Island face on a regular basis. I use my platform to bring awareness to these issues with the hopes to create the much-needed systemic changes.

How does it feel to be a part of Le Phoque OFF 2021 festival in its 7th consecutive year?

I’m very grateful to be included in the 7th edition of the Phoque Off Festival in 2021. This Festival has become the greatest of its kind to showcase alternative music and it is the hottest Festival in the City! I feel privileged to participate.

Le Phoque OFF 2021 will be going virtual this year, how do you prepare for a virtual festival compared to a standard festival?

We’re all living in a different reality with the changes that have come with Covid-19 so, we’ve had to adapt to the times. The virtual Festival certainly challenges us to deliver the show differently in comparison to having a live audience but the preparation for the show remains the same for us. We still rehearse our set prior to the show and have a great time jamming. The biggest adjustment is going in and doing our soundcheck and immediately jumping into the show. There’s usually some downtime to prepare mentally before jumping on stage but with the restrictions, we have to prepare mentally to go in and get it all done at the same time. All in all, when you love what you do, you adapt and have a blast doing it!

What can someone who has yet to see you perform live expect from the performance?

If you haven’t been to a Q052 show, you should prepare yourself to hear a LOUD live band! I spit out lyrics from the pit of my soul while my band smashes through your eardrums. My lyrics are delivered with the intention to make you question the intentions of the government system with the hopes that you reflect on how to change them for the better.

What song of yours would you recommend a new listener check out?

If I could recommend one song for a new listener it would be “Oil the Gunz”. The song is about the government’s constant pressure to develop oil projects at the cost of human life and their total disregard for the people affected by these developments. Wars are waged, children are murdered and the environment is destroyed all in the name of the almighty dollar for oil companies…who just happen to pay for the political campaigns for the lawmakers who provide the exploration & extraction permits to those oil companies.

Last but not least, how have you been keeping creative during the Pandemic?

My muse to create has always been the ongoing issues that we face regularly. Although the pandemic has slowed down the world economy, it has not slowed down the corrupt governance structure we live with. Police continue to brutalize citizens, lawmakers continue to create laws that benefit their campaign contributors, people are freezing in the streets, there are communities in Canada without drinking water and the number of Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women is still on the rise. The list goes on; therefore, I’m constantly creating. Hip Hop’s my weapon in this war for justice and equality.

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