Friday, June 29, 2007

Weekend Music Options 6/30/07 - 7/1/07

Re-name This Band (they're currently called the Switch)

Saturday's Pick:
Radars to the Sky / Tigers Can Bite You / The Henry Clay People / Destrukto (formerly Molecules) @ the Echo ($7 or $5 w/flyer) – Four up and coming local bands presented by Radio Free Silver Lake and the Rock Insider.
Also on Saturday:
Steve Winwood @ House of Blues Sunset (Sold Out) – The man from Spencer Davis Group, Traffic and a long solo career.
The Adored / The Prayers / The Nightbirds / Anavan @ KGB Gallery in Chinatown – With DJs Dia, Franki Chan, Scarlett Casanova
Battles @ Troubadour (Sold Out) – I find them overrated, but maybe you love them.
The Donnas @ Safari Sam’s ($12 adv / $15 dos) – They’re fun to see.
Moving Units @ The Fonda (Sold Out)
Year Long Disaster @ Spaceland ($8)
Sam Sparro / the Good Listeners / Driveblind @ Bordello ($10)
Kelly Dalton @ Hotel Café
Cyndi Lauper / Debbie Harry / Dresden Dolls / Erasure @ Greek Theatre ($40 - $115)
Prince @ the Roosevelt

Sunday's Pick:
Little Radio Summer Camp: The Switch / Xu Xu Fang / Thailand @ Little Radio Warehouse ($10) - The bands usually start around 3PM. All the members of the Switch are really talented, so it’s no surprise that most of them have their own bands too. A lot of people were turned on to them at the Sea Level Going Away party.
Also on Sunday:
Merle Jagger @ Spaceland
Part Time Punks @ the Echo ($5)
Rosie Flores @ Safari Sam’s ($12) – Rockabilly from Austin.

Friday Night Music Options 6/29/07

Feist Appears at the Wiltern Tonight

Tonight's Pick:
Feist / Grizzly Bear @ Wiltern (Sold Out) – Critical darlings.
Other Stuff:
Andre Williams / Flash Express @ Safari Sam’s ($12) – “The Black Godfather”
As Tall as Lions / Low vs. Diamond @ Troubadour ($12)
The Veils / The Comas @ Spaceland – New Zealanders
Boom Pam @ the Echoplex ($10) – From Tel Aviv
Cave Singers / Lightning Dust @ El Cid ($8) – Cave Singers are on Matador and have one of the guys from Pretty Girls Make Graves.
Allison Krauss @ Greek Theatre ($75) – For the country fans. I just checked and you can get 4th row tickets right now.
Bimbo Toolshed / Sluts for Hire @ Mr. T’s Bowl ($6)
Goliath Bird Eater @ 2nd Street Jazz (Free)
Club Underground @ the Echo ($8) – The popular West Hollywood Club is now at the Echo every Friday. Spinning the best in Brit / Indie / Soul / Twee / Madchester / Punk / Glam.
Prince @ the Roosevelt (more than most people make in a month)

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Acute Review - Live at the Troubadour

I got invited to see Acute last week at the Troubadour but couldn't make it. I haven't seen the local press cover these guys too much, so I thought it would be good to invite Donny to go in my place. Unfortunately there was some miscommunication between the publicist and the label and he wasn't on the list. Being the good guy that he is, he still turned in this review. Thanks Donny. On a side note, I hate when guest reviewers write more coherently than I.

Here's his review:

As Duke mentioned last week, Los Angeles-based band Acute has largely been overlooked by our local music blogs. The band, made up of singer/guitarist Isaac Lekach, drummer Patrick Edwards, keyboardist Jason Borger, and bassist Matt Herman, has been playing shows locally and nationally since the release of their debut album, Arms Around a Stranger (Help Records). Acute came together after Lekach's previous musical project, Poulain, dissolved. Lekach recruited drummer Edwards and bassist Colt Maloney (who recorded the album but subsequently left the group) to start a new project. The trio began writing music together, and the new band was born. While Herman came onboard recently to replace Maloney, Borger helped the band arrange string parts and record keyboards for the album, joining the group full time after that. The band describes their sound as "orch-pop." Try to think of the lyrical poignancy of the Magnetic Fields crossed with the orchestral ambition of the Beach Boys and the whimsical charm of film legend Frederico Fellini (in fact, the album cover for Arms Around a Stranger is based off the original movie poster for Fellini's 1973 film Amarcord).

Acute is currently on a national tour with ex-D Generation main man, Jesse Malin. Check out a play-by-play review of the band's hometown show at the Troubadour last Wednesday here. Due to some hiccups, I wasn't able to catch the full show, but Josh from LAist gives a good account of the details. For me, having seen Acute perform live many times before, it seems the addition of Borger and Herman has been vitalizing. Borger has been invaluable with his dual keyboard setup, allowing the group to recreate many of the memorable orchestral flourishes from the album live. And Herman's bass playing has made the band much more dynamic. Since they've come onboard, some of the songs from Arms Around a Stranger have been updated live. The new version of "We Can't Stop" was a highlight at the Troubadour show. We also saw the talents of Lekach and Edwards at that show. Live, and on record, Edwards's understated, yet dynamic, drumming gives the songs room to breathe. Many drummers have the inclination to overplay, but Edwards's sense of musicality never allows that to happen. Lekach is the voice of the band in every sense, serving also as Acute's principal songwriter. In this age of Brock-yelps and Buckley-gushes, Lekach's vocal style is a welcomed relief. Like Edwards's approach to drums, Lekach never oversings. Instead, he employs the sweet timbre of his baritone to carry his lyrics and melodies—what a brilliant idea. It is all these elements collectively that gives Acute its unique sound; one that is immediately recognizable and ultimately comforting. All the members of this band come together to serve the song. And with Acute, it's always about the song. Here's hoping for every two articles written about buzzed-out local bands like the Deadly Syndrome, the Broken West, No Age, or the Parson Redheads, there's at least one written about Acute. These guys certainly deserve it.

Download "The City" and "Follow You Home"

Thursday Night Music Options 6/28/07

Anybody make it to the McCartney show last night at Amoeba? It sounded amazing an hour and a half long performance, tons of Beatles songs and Ringo was even in attendance. Check out Amoeba's review HERE orBob Lefsetz's review HERE.

Tonight's Pick:
Xu Xu Fang / Secretary Bird @ the Echo ($7) – Record Release party for Xu Xu Fang. Scott at Little Radio had some really nice things to say about Xu Xu fang recently. And Bronson recently had some really nice things to say about Secretary Bird.

Other Options:
The Mooney Suzuki / The Photo Atlas / War Tapes @ Spaceland ($10) – The Mooney Suzuki used to be a really good garage revival band (and great fun to see live). Then they decided to sell out. I haven’t heard the new one, but I think it’s supposed to be a return to form. Download The Mooney Suzuki’s “99%

The Album Leaf / Arthur & Yu / Under Byen @ El Rey ($15) – The Album Leaf is Jimmy Lavelle from Tristeza. Seems like it might splinter the same crowd as the Troubadour tonight. Arthur & Yu’s getting some nice blog / hipster love for its new album on Sub Pop offshoot.

Paul and Oates @ Taix (Free) – This is Matt and Paul from Qui. Believe it or not, they have a Hall and Oates/easy listening cover band. I hear it’s entertaining.
Low End Theory: Free Moral Agents (featuring Ikey from Mars Volta) / The Grouch @ the Echoplex ($5) – They finally moved the club to the Echoplex.
The Locust / The Mae Shi / Sleeping People @ Troubadour ($15) – For the noise rock / math rock / challenging rock fans.
Castledoor / Gran Ronde @ the Silverlake Lounge
Steel @ Canter’s Kibbitz RoomMonsters are Waiting / Mellowdrone (acoustic) / Gliss / David Lovering of the Pixies @ the Roxy ($12)
HDR / Sky Parade @ Viper Room ($10)

Arcade Fire / LCD Soundsystem Tix on Sale Now

Tickets quietly went on sale for the Arcade Fire / LCD Soundsystem show at the Hollywood Bowl on Thursday September 20th. Get them here and avoid a lot of the Ticketmaster service charges. The tickets they have cost $41.

Beastie Boys Tix on Sale Now

What: Beastie Boys Live in Concert
Where: Greek Theatre Los Angeles
When: Monday August 20, 2007
Why: Celebrating their new record (in stores yesterday)
How: Tickets went on sale this morning - presale password MIXUP

New Show on Little Radio

Remember last week when I mentioned that Sea Level's Todd and Sylvia were going to be on Little Radio from 11AM - 1PM? Well guess what, it turned into a weekly show. So be sure to tune into Little Radio today from 11 AM - 1 PM for Sylvia's new show. Todd won't be there today, but once he gets his store cleaned up and he's not on the road, he'll be there pretty regularly. In place of Todd, her guests today will be a couple of the guys from Brothers and Sisters. They're a cool band from Austin who have been in town recording and playing shows at Spaceland and the Echo. You can go their Myspace page to listen to some of the new demos.....

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Wednesday Night Music Options 6/27/07

Tussle Plays the Echo Tonight

Some good shows last night, but I was just too tired after working all day and helping (for a bit)Todd and Sylvia tear down Sea Level.
Tonight’s Pick:
Tussle / Anavan @ the Echo ($5) – Non-annoying indie dance music. They put on a good show.

Also Recommended:
Arthur Benefit Party: Six Organs of Admittance / Entrance / Ruthann Friedman @ Silent Movie Theatre ($15) – Help Arthur Magazine pay off some of its debts. Jay’s also got a William Burroughs item for sale on Ebay. Six Organs performance is a “special one-time-only performance with Joseph Mattson, Steve Ruecker and and Elisa Ambrogio”

Other Options:
The Dirty Dozen Brass Band @ Troubadour ($18) – The New Orleans jazz band is a perennial favorite. They recently released a tribute to Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On. Download “I Shall Not Be Moved
Mandy Moore @ the Roxy (Sold Out) – She’s got bad taste in guys, but maybe you can change all that.
Les Claypool / Two Gallants @ The Fonda ($23) – The former Primus frontman.
Austin James Band @ Silverlake Lounge ($8)
Club NME: Sunday Drivers / Strata @ Spaceland (?)
Jessica Fichot / Evan Way @ Bordello ($8) – Evan Way is the lead singer of The Parson Red Heads, doing a rare solo performance.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Sea Level Going Away Party @ Safari Sam's

Thanks to everybody who came out to the official Sea Level Going Away Party at Safari Sam's last Friday. We had a great turnout, the bar made money, we were able to pay the bands and everybody had a lot of fun. Special thanks to Division Day and the Switch for playing and Kevin Bronson and Marcos for DJ'ing and funny man Matt Dwyer for the comedy. The Switch and Division Day are two up and coming bands that keep getting better and better every time I see them. If you haven't seen these two local bands, do yourself a favor and catch their live performance. Big ups to Aquarium Drunkard, Scott, Joe, Jax, Jeff and the LAist for helping spread the word and showing up and having a good time. It was nice to see so many LA bands show their respect for one of the true supporters of the local music scene. I was way too drunk by the end of the night, but I do remember seeing members of Silversun Pickups, Earlimart, The Broken West, Irving, Radar Bros. and Let's Go Sailing (I'm sure I'm leaving out about 50 other bands). Thanks to Safari Sam's for hosting the party, cooking us dinner (I hear the cheeseburger there is excellent. The penne pasta was quite good too.) and the free drinks. Thanks to Sylvia for pretty much planning the whole thing and Graham and Todd for opening the store in the first place. One tip - if you're planning something like this make sure to designate a photographer to take pictures. And preferably make it a photographer who's not drinking massive quantities of beer and Maker's. I snapped a few of the bands but totally missed out on the DJs and crowd. D'oh.

Live Music Options Tuesday 6/26/07

The National Plays the El Rey Tonight

I finally made it out to see Qui with newest member David Yow. They were a powerful two piece before. By adding Yow, they've got more of a focal point for the crowd's attention. He pretty much sings/speaks nonsense into the microphone and if you're a politically correct and easily offended, it's best not to listen too hard. He works the stage so hard you can't take (read: are afraid to) take your eyes off of him. At any point he's equally likely to leap into the crowd, slam the microphone down or simulate nose picking. Matt Cronk (guitarist) and Paul Christensen (drums) are both talented musicians who end up sweaty messes by the end of the set. For fans of abrasive, kick you in the scrotum, odd time signature punk rock.
Tonight's Pick:
The National / The Broken West @ El Rey (Sold Out) – I finally picked up the National’s new record so I could give it the proper listens. The Broken West are one of my favorite LA bands with one of my most listened to albums of the year so far.
Let’s Independent: Bedroom Walls / Tandemoro / Frankel @ Boardner’s (Free) – Download Bedroom Walls’ “In Anticipation of Your Suicide” and “Somewhere in Newhall” Go to Tandemoro’s website to download 13 songs. This is another really solid lineup picked by Joe at Radio Free Silver Lake.
Other Shows:
Rodrigo Y Gabriela @ the Ford Amphitheatre (Sold Out) – Mexican, acoustic guitar fiends.
Snoop Dogg @ Henry Fonda ($50) – This sounds entertaining.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Paul McCartney To Appear at Amoeba

Wednesday at 7:30PM. Good luck with that.

Monday Night Music Options

Qui Plays the Echo Tonight

Tonight's Options (all are pretty good):
Morgan's Orange @ Sea Level (Free) - This is the last in-store ever. And the last day they're open. Only Todd would have an in-store on the last day of being open. Now would be a good time to go down and make an offer on any music you've been eyeing.
Beastie Boys' The Mix Up Listening Parties @ Undefeated Silverlake (3827 Sunset Blvd) and Union (110 S. La Brea) - From 6PM- 8PM - Free Ice Cream!
Burning Brides / Qui / Sabertooth Tiger @ the Echoplex (Free / $5 under 21) – Nice lineup for fans of more abrasive rock. The LA Weekly has a decent interview with Qui this week.
The Deadly Syndrome / Brothers and Sisters @ Spaceland (Free) - Last night of the free residency. Get there early for Austin’s Brothers and Sisters.
Thailand / Radars to the Sky (acoustic set) @ the Silverlake Lounge (Free) – Nice lineup for the indie rock fans.
Health / Abe Vigoda / The Mae Shi @ Pehrspace
Eagle and Talon @ Troubadour (Free / $3 under 21) – Their only show of the summer.
Patton Oswalt @ Largo – Funnyman.

Friday, June 22, 2007

BRMC Plays Little Radio on Saturday

I'll see you all at Safari Sam's tonight. Some pretty good stuff happening the rest of the weekend too....
Saturday 6/23/07
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club @ Little Radio Warehouse (Free) – They’re doing a video shoot and a free concert. You must show up at 3:30PM to see the show. Wear dark clothes. I like these guys.
The Police / Foo Fighters @ Dodgers Stadium ($250 tickets still remain) – I haven’t really read any positive reviews of these reunion shows.
Too Short @ House of Blues ($27.50) – Old school hip-hop.
Chuck Dukowski Sextet @ the Smell

Sunday 6/24/07
DJ Shadow and Cut Chemist perform Brain Placement @ Hollywood Bowl ($9 - $45) – This could be really cool, if you’re heard their Product Placement bootleg.
Little Radio Barbeque: Riverboat Gamblers / Restaurant @ Little Radio Warehouse 1218 Long Beach Avenue ($10)
Grand Ol’ Echo: Mike Stinson / 50 Cent Haircut @ the Echo (Free) – 5:00PM
A Sunny Day in Glasgow / My Teenage Stride @ Perhspace – Scott @ Little Radio’s a big fan of A Sunny Day in Glasgow. To me they sound a little like My Bloody Valentine mashed up with Enya (but then again, what do I know?).
Janeane Garofalo / Patton Oswalt @ Troubadour ($35 dos / $30 adv) – Spendy.
Part Time Punks @ the Echo ($5)

Concerts Going On Sale Tomorrow

Reasons to possibly wake up at 10:00 AM Tomorrow:

Wilco and Richard Swift @ the Greek Theatre on 8/29/07 - There's a presale right now SKY

The White Stripes and Cold War Kids @ the Forum on 9/19/07 - There's a presale right now FORUM.

Amy Winehouse @ the Wiltern on 9/18/07 and 9/19/07

Sea Level Going Away Party Tonight

I hope to see everybody at Safari Sam's tonight for the Sea Level Records wake. Todd and Sylvia will be DJ'ing along with Magic Marcos and Kevin Bronson. A lot of the bands that Sea Level Records has supported over the past five and a half years should be in attendance. The music will start on the early side, so be sure to get there by nine to see the Switch followed by Division Day. The show is all ages, so everybody's welcome. Hopefully a lot of the younger kids who don't get a chance to see Division Day and the Switch very often will be there. Stick around after the bands for drinks and DJs.
Download some older Division Day songs: "Bad Black Moon" and "There Is No Telling"
Download The Switch's "Tongue Tied" and "Living in Another World" [these are pop-up downloads so you have to click on the title]

The Cure Announce Hollywood Bowl Date

What: The Cure
Where: Hollywood Bowl
When: Sunday October 14, 2007
Tickets: No announcement yet.

Beirut Tickets on Sale Today

Beirut, along with special guest Colleen will be playing the Avalon on Wednesday October 10th. Tickets go on sale through Ticketmaster today at noon and they're $22. I admire their ambition.

Download "Postcards from Italy" and "Mount Proclai (Idle Days)"

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Thursday Night Music Options 6/21/07

Sea Wolf Plays the Echo Tonight
I made it out for the New Year at Spaceland last night. Very good show. They announced that they've got a new album coming out in August. Most songs start out mellow and the tension builds. Four guitarists in a band like that might be excessive, but why not?
Tonight's Pick:
Sea Wolf / Everest @ the Echo ($10) – Local heartthrob Alex Church was the bass player for Irving. This is his new band. Indie 103 and KCRW play the hell out of the first single “You’re a Wolf,” which is really good. The LAist is all over it. They’re heading out with label mates Silversun Pickups very soon. Get there early for Everest. They’re a relatively new band and don’t play much. I heard their last performance was great.
Also Appearing:
Tortoise @ El Rey ($20.50) – I haven’t seen the jazz rockers in over a decade, but they were great then.
Johnette Napolitano / the Minor Canon @ Hotel Café ($12) – Concrete Blonde was a good band and the Minor Canon’s a really underrated local band.
Club Tribute: The Music of the Beatles ($7) – Safari Sam’s has this club once a month with local bands covering great bands. Kind Hearts & Coronets and others will be doing the Beatles tonight
Josie Cotton / Nikki Corvette @ the Echoplex ($12) – My girlfriend is convinced that Regine from the Arcade Fire stole her complete look and essence from Josie Cotton. I have to confess that I didn’t know who the hell she was talking about. She reminded me that the song “Johnny Are You Queer” was in that great 80’s film, Valley Girl.
Castledoor @ Silverlake Lounge ($8)
Norah Jones / M. Ward @ the Greek (Sold Out) – Get there early for M. Ward. He’s a talented dude.
Franco Near Death / Icebird / Hello Menno @ Spaceland

Press Coverage of Sea Level's Closing

Some of the press coverage for Sea Level:

Billboard’s Coverage (picked up by Reuters and Yahoo)


Floating Away


Buzz Bands

LA Record

Rock Insider

The Tripwire

Losanjealous’ Elegy for Sea Level

Nothing from the LA Weekly. They probably don't care.

Sea Level Todd & Sylvia on Little Radio Soon

Tune in to Little Radio today from 11:00AM - 1:00PM to listen to Sea Level Todd and Sylvia spin records. Sea Level's closing its doors forever this Monday. Get in there and buy some stuff to help Todd pay for his retirement. Also, don't forget about the big going away party we're presenting at Safari Sam's this Friday night. See the flyer above for details.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Wednesday Night Music Options 6/20/07

Acute Plays the Troubadour Tonight

Tonight's Picks:
Club NME: The New Year / David Bazan @ Spaceland ($12) – Not to turn you off, but if you like slowcore (borderline depressing) indie rock like I do, then you’ll like the New Year. I was happy to see this on the schedule since I thought they broke up. The Kadane brothers were in another band I loved called Bedhead. I first saw Bedhead around 1996 at the Replay Lounge (which held about 35 people at the time) in Lawrence, KS. It was one of those experiences where I liked the performance so much I followed them out to their van and bought a bunch of merch (partially because I was afraid they didn’t have any gas money). David Bazan is the guy from Pedro the Lion.
Jesse Malin / Chuck Ragan / Acute @ Troubadour ($12) – Acute’s a local LA band that doesn’t get as much blog attention as a lot of less deserving bands. That’s why I’m sending a guest correspondent out to review the show tonight. They play hooky alt-pop that the All Music Guide compares to Wilco, the Cars and pre-Document R.E.M. Dave Trumfio (Grandaddy, Wilco, Built to Spill, My Morning Jacket) recorded their new record, which is out now on Help Records. Download Acute’s “The City” and “Follow You Home
Also Appearing:
The Police @ Staples ($260 tickets still remain) – Will Sting use his yoga skills to autofellate? For $260 I sure hope so.
Great Lake Swimmers / Eleni Mandell / Ferraby Lionheart / Marissa Nadler @ Hotel Café ($12) – This is a good (and somewhat unexpected) lineup for the Hotel Café.
Hell Ya Night: Paris Hltn, Mtrhfckrs / Juiceboxxx @ the Echo (Free over 21 / $5 for 18+)
Radio Birdman @ El Rey ($24)

Wilco Tix On Sale Now

Tickets are now on sale through Musictoday for the August 29th show at the Greek Theatre. Good Luck.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Tuesday Night Music Options 6/19/07

Austin's Shearwater Play the Echo Tonight

Pitchfork reports that Arcade Fire and LCD Soundsystem will be playing the Hollywood Bowl on September 20th. Hot on the heels of Arcade Fire's two sold out shows at the Greek and LCD Soundsystem's three sold out shows at the El Rey.
Tivo Alert: Flight of the Conchords on Conan
Shearwater / Jamie Stewart (of Xiu Xiu) / Brothers and Sisters / Minus Story @ the Echo ($10)
Architecture in Helsinki / Gang Gang Dance / Ariel Pink / Yacht @ the Fonda ($18)
Ocrilim / Upsilon Acrux @ the Smell ($5)
Kip Boardman / Old Californio / Ladytown @ El Cid ($6)

Monday, June 18, 2007

Monday Night Music Options 6/18/07

Thailand Plays the Silverlake Lounge Tonight

The number of free Monday night shows is really overwhelming...
Tivo Alert: The White Stripes on Conan
Thailand @ Silverlake Lounge (Free)
Frankel @ the Scene (Free)
Burning Brides / Nebula / Sasquatch @ the Echo (Free)
Dan Deacon / Health / Juiceboxxx @ Pehr Space
Ollin / Listing Ship @ Mr. T’s Bowl
The Lovetones / The Quarter After / The Parson Red Heads / DJ Anton Newcombe (BJM) @ Safari Sam’s ($7 / $5 with flyer)
Strangers Smile / The Shys @ Viper Room (Free with RSVP, $10 otherwise)
The Horrors @ El Rey ($15)

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Top Five New Releases: 6/12/07

Top Five New Releases:
John Doe: A Year in the Wilderness (Yep Roc) - The former X guy releases another solo record. Kathleen Edwards, Jill Sobule and Aimee Mann make guest appearances. See him at the Hootenanny on 7/7.
The Loose Salute: Tuned to Love (Graveface) – I missed this last week, so I'm including it here. I'm not sure if the band name is a tribute to Mike Nesmith or not, but it's quite possible. Mojave 3 drummer. Download “The Mutineer” and “Turn the Radio Up
My Morning Jacket: Tennessee Fire & At Dawn demos (Darla) - I'm a pretty big MMJ fan, but haven't heard all this stuff. The first 2500 copies of At Dawn came with these demos, but it's been out of print.
The Queens of the Stone Age: Era Vulgaris (Interscope) - I've never really been a fan, but I recognize that they're good at what they do. Mostly good reviews (with the exception of the usual suspects - Pitchfork and Village Voice).
Sonic Youth: Daydream Nation Deluxe, remastered edition (Geffen) - Sonic Youth's breakthrough album frequently pops up on the top 100 indie/90s album lists. It's really good, but maybe a little overrated. I'm just saying...See them perform the album in its entirey at the Greek Theatre on 7/20. Letter Grade: B+

Other Releases:
Datarock: Datarock (Nettwerk) - Ironic synthy dance rock from Norway. Anybody see their show earlier this week? I hear they're better live than on disc.
Robin Guthrie & Harold Budd: After the Night Falls (Darla) - The former Cocteau Twins guitarist teams up with pianist Harold Budd.
Joan as Police Woman: Real Life (Cheap Lullaby) – Well connected singer who has toured with Antony & the Johnsons and Rufus Wainwright. Anybody see her at Hotel Cafe this week? Download “Eternal Flame” and “The Ride” See her at Spaceland on 9/7.
Mark Olson: The Salvation Blues (Hacktone) - The former Jayhawks member chronicles his breakup with wife Victoria Williams. See him at Largo on 8/10.
Mark Ronson: Version (Red Ink) - Lots of covers from the guy who helped produced Amy Winehouse's record. She makes an appearance as does Lily Allen. The Smiths cover is all over Indie 103. It's a bit upsetting.
Scissors for Lefty: Underhanded Romance (Eenie Meenie) – San Francisco Download “Next to Argyle
Two Lone Swordsmen: Wrong Meeting, Vol 2 (Rotter's Golf Club)
Wooden Wand: James and the Quiet (Ecstatic Peace) - Less weird than his other material. Ecstatic Peace is Thurston Moore's label.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Weekend Music Options 6/16/07 - 6/17/07

Saturday 6/16/07
Frankel @ Sea Level (Free) - The last official in-store ever. The sale prices are kicking in, so if there are any indie CDs you've been wanting you might take a look.
Check Yo Ponytail: Dan Deacon / Juan Maclean (DJ Set) / Juiceboxxx @ EchoPlex ($10) – Is Dan Deacon proof that indie dance hipsters will listen to anything? Is this what Cobrasnake will look like in ten years? I have a lot of questions.
Lavender Diamond / Winter Flowers / Anders & Woods @ Troubadour ($10 adv / $12 dos) - Lavender Diamond is calling this their CD release show. Their debut full-length was recently released by Matador Records.
The Rosebuds / Land of Talk @ Spaceland ($10) - Indie rock duo on Merge recently released their third album.
The Clean Prophets @ High Energy Constructs (990 n. Hill St. #180) – Kick off party for West Coast tour with their new bass player.
Teenage Talking Cars @ the Smell ($5)
Hang the DJs: Chow Nasty @ Echo ($8)
The Fratellis / Division Day @ Avalon ($16) - The All Music Guide praises the Fratelli's, "bright, dancey, Scottish garage rock." Division Day are playing the big Sea Level Going Away Party next Friday at Safari Sam's (presented by us). I hope to see you all there.

Sunday's Pick:
The Creators Series: Pop Levi / No Age @ EchoPlex ($10) - Doors open at 7:00PM for this show. Pop Levi's the former Ladytron member with the T. Rex fascination. Originally the Handsome Furs were supposed to play this show, but they had visa problems. Instead, it's a great chance to see No Age. No Age is one of the Smell-affiliated bands that I've never managed to see. They're local band who recently got some nice love from Pitchfork. The lead singer of Deerhunter also called them his favorite new band.

Also Appearing:
The Queers @ Safari Sam’s ($12 adv / $15 dos) - Veteran, goofy, non-queer punk-pop band.
Keren Ann @ Troubadour ($15) - KCRW friendly singer.
Grand Ole Echo: Blood on the Saddle @ the Echo (Free) – The county-centric free barbeque at the Echo happens at 5:00PM.
Summer Camp: Simon Dawes @ Little Radio ($10) – There are also two unannounced bands. I know who one of them is, and I’m definitely a fan.
Bebel Gilberto @ El Rey ($30) – Brazilian singer for the NPR crowd.
One AM Radio / Daedelus @ Tangier ($10) – Mellow indie electronic, singer-songwriter
Anavan / Juiceboxxx @ the Smell ($5)

Friday Night Music Options 6/15/07

The Long Blondes Play the Echo Tonight

Pretty active night in LA.
Tonight's Pick:
The Dillards @ McCabe’s ($26.50) – There’s an 8:00PM and 10:00PM show. The Dillards are a bluegrass band that plugged in and were very influential in the development of country-rock. Doug Dillard was hard partying and teamed up with bad boy, Gene Clark on the seminal album, “The Fantastic Expedition of Dillard and Clark.” Chris Hillman considers it the greatest country-rock album ever. I’m reading a thick Gene Clark bio right now, with lots of tales of Doug and Gene causing lots of problems. Look at him now. I best he’s got some great stories.
Also Appearing:
The Long Blondes @ Echo ($14) – British, female fronted, upbeat and Pitchfork approved.
The Noisettes / The Maccabees / Pity Party @ Troubadour (Sold Out) – A couple of upbeat British bands with major label money/buzz behind them. The Noisettes are fronted by a black female who Pitchfork compares to Karen O (Yeah Yeah Yeahs) and Gwen Stefani. The Maccabees are dudes. Get there early for LA’s the Pity Party.
The Mammals / Chapin Sisters @ Tangier ($10) – A newer band for the No Depression crowd.
Mere Mortals / Kind Hearts and Coronets @ Spaceland – Local lineup.
Southerly @ Knitting Factory ($8) – Singer-songwritery. Download “Soldiers” and “Dreams That Make Men Free
Patrick Park @ Hotel Café – He’s also doing a Thursday night residency at Spaceland in July (in case Hollywood on a Friday night scares you as much as it does me).
Teddy’s Cheer Club / The Secret 6 @ El Cid (Free)
Upsilon Acrux / Silver Daggers / Bobb Bruno @ the Smell ($5)
Wailers @ House of Blues ($25) – For the reggae fans.
Sage Francis / Buck 65 / Alias @ the Fonda ($20) – For the hip-hop fans.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Top Five Most Interesting Releases 6/5/07

I'm way behind on this stuff. Almost two weeks behind. Some noteworthy stuff was released, and I personally feel out of touch....

The Top Five:
Afghan Whigs: Unbreakable - A Retrospective 1990-2006 (Rhino) - They were huge while I was in college. When I moved to LA I'd see lead singer Greg Dulli all around town in the various bars he has/had a stake in. He was the original hard partying, hard drinking indie crooner. Is the white room still going strong?
A Band of Bees: Octopus (Astralwerks) - I splurged for the import version of this disc a while back. These guys are so eclectic (but not in a boring, samey way like some people define it). One track they've got a dub beat, the next track they've got a soul vibe. It's disconcerting from lesser musicians, but works quite well with these guys. I've been listening to it daily for over a month. I recommend you listen. One of my top 10 discs of the year so far. I wish they'd play a show in the US soon. Letter Grade: B+
Paul McCartney: Memory Almost Full (Hear Music/Starbucks) - People say its his best album in years, but I've avoided it so far.
Shellac: Excellent Italian Greyhound (Touch and Go) - I tend to like Steve Albini and Bob Weston's band more in theory than in reality. It's great when you're pissed off.
Porter Wagoner: Wagonmaster (Anti) - I've been listening to vintage Porter Wagoner, but haven't heard this one yet. Anybody see him at Safari Sam's? I'm sad I missed it. If you like Gram Parsons and Johnny Cash you should pay him respect.

Other Releases:
Amandine: Solace in Sore Hands (Fat Cat) - Those fucking Swedes.
Bonde do Role: With Lasers (Domino) - A Brazilian Beastie Boys? I read that on Amazon.
David Bowie: Best of 1980-1987 – Sight and Sound (Virgin/EMI) - Not exactly his more fertile period. A greatest hits might do ya right.
The Cinematic Orchestra: Ma Fleur (Domino)
The Clash: The Singles (Epic) - How many best ofs are there? I will admit that I'm more of a greatest hits guy when it comes to the Clash.
Chris Cornell: Carry On (Interscope) - My friend Justin passed me a cassette dub of Soundgarden's Ultramega OK in honors English class Sophomore year. Piracy's killing the record labels.
Dappled Cities: Granddance (Dangerbird) – Aussies on the local Dangerbird label. Produced by Jim Fairchild and Peter Walker. At the Troubadour on 7/25.
Get Him Eat Him: Arms Down (Absolutely Kosher) - Well connected indie rockers. Download "2 x 2" At the Knitting Factory on 7/15.
The Ladybug Transistor: Can't Wait Another Day (Merge) - Solid indie rockers put out their sixth album.
The Long Blondes: Someone to Drive You Home (Beggars) - Female fronted, upbeat (almost dance rock) British band. Live at the Echo on 6/15.
Marilyn Manson: Eat Me, Drink Me (Nothing)
Pelican: City of Echoes (Hydrahead) - Heavy rock.
Pissed Jeans: Hope for Men (Sub Pop) - I bought their first 7" on Sub Pop and quickly decided I was too old for this shit. PA punk band. Download "I've Still Got You (Ice Cream)"
Sean Na-Na: Family Trees Or - Cope We Must (Dim Mak) - You probably see him all over town and you probably know he's a really nice guy. I've seen him at least twice this week already. At the Troubadour on 7/24.
They Shoot Horses Don't They: Pick Up Sticks (Kill Rock Stars) - At the Smell on 8/25.
Various Artists: Anchored in Love - A Tribute to June Carter Cash (Dualtone) - With Willie, Lorettea, Emmylou, Kris, Ralph Stanley, etc. and BBT (?)
Various Artists: Ocean’s Thirteen Soundtrack (Warner Bros.) - David Holmes score.

Thursday Night Music Options 6/14/07

I made it down to Spaceland for most of the White Rabbits set last night. They were good. Bronson at Buzz Bands has a much better review. Honestly I was too damned tired to enjoy it much. They had two drummers, some good rhythms and it felt like a lot of the songs were composed on piano. A few tracks really stood out. I'll keep my eye on them.

Tonight's Choices:
Ladybug Transistor / The Papercuts @ the Echo ($12) – I saw these Merge Recording artists about nine years ago and really liked them.
Calvin Johnson / Julie Doiron @ the Smell ($7) – The guy behind K Records with the big baritone.
The Henry Clay People / Death to Anders @ the Scene ($5) – The Rock Insider Presents
Amy Cooper @ Silverlake Lounge
The Mother Hips / Strangers Smile / Travel By Sea @ EchoPlex (Free) – The Aquarium Drunkard presents this show. Some of my friends with good taste are huge fans of The Mother Hips.
Castledoor / The Monolators / Amy Cooper @ Silverlake Lounge ($7)
The Format @ Mayan (Sold Out) – They’re filming a live DVD. I thought their album last year was good. They’ve got a pretty good cover of the Kinks “Apeman” on their Myspace page.
Sleepytime Gorilla Music @ Troubadour ($15)
Graham MacRae @ Knitting Factory ($7)

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

White Stripes To Play Free Show in Los Angeles

Who: the White Stripes
When: June 20th
Where: Icky Thump Records aka the old Tower Records on Sunset (8801 W. Sunset Blvd)
How to get tickets: Be one of the first 200 people to buy their new album next Monday after midnight at the old Tower Records (or win tickets on KROQ)

Their new album comes out next Tuesday

Good luck with that.

Wednesday Night Music Options 6/13/07

White Rabbits Play Spaceland Tonight
Tonight's Pick:
Club NME: White Rabbits / The Morning Benders @ Spaceland ($8) – The All Music Guide gave these New Yorkers 4 ½ out of 5 stars and Pitchfork recently gave them 8.1/10. I was intrigued, so I downloaded these two tracks. The tracks are upbeat without being overly obnoxious and have some non-obvious influences. Did anybody brave the crowd at Cinespace last night to see them? Download “Kid On My Shoulder” and “The Plot
Also Recommended:
Roger Waters @ the Hollywood Bowl (Sold Out) – I feel like never seeing Roger Waters is something I’m going to regret. If you like space/drug/headphone rock and don’t like Pink Floyd, then you’re probably lying to yourself.
Scissors for Lefty / Lemon Sun / Something for Rockets @ Knitting Factory ($14) – This is the record release party for Scissors for Lefty who have a new album out on Eenie Meenie Records. Download “Lay Down Your Weapons
Hot Chip / Planningtorock @ Fonda (Sold Out) – They’re dance rock for the slightly more discriminating listener.
Datarock / 8-Bit @ Troubadour ($15) – Norwegian band for the ironic dance rock (Cinespace-style) fans. They even quote Revenge of the Nerds. Download “Fa-Fa-Fa
Jana Hunter / Imaad Wasif and the Two Part Beast @ the Smell ($5) – Jana Hunter’s down with Devendra Banhart and from the looks of her Myspace page, lots of other people who rock the Indian headdress look (but probably not Juliette Lewis).
Two Sheds / Joan as Police Woman @ Hotel Café – Joan as Police Woman has a new album out. She’s performed with Rufus and Antony in the past. Download Joan as a Police Woman’s “Eternal Flame” and “The Ride” She’s also playing at Spaceland 9/7.
Dub Club w/ Peanut Butter Wolf @ EchoPlex

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Tuesday Night Music Options 6/12/07

Spaceland was absolutely crazy packed last night. I caught a little bit of Juliette Lewis. It wasn't really my cup of tea, but other people seemed to be enjoying it. Pink was there. She's well fit. Brothers & Sisters were probably a little confused by it all, but put on a good show. It was packed for Deadly Syndrome, who played a bunch of new songs and sounded really good too. You should see these guys for free while you've got the chance.

Tonight's Pick:
Cold War Kids / The Little Ones @ EchoPlex ($20) – Benefit for 826LA and African Water Wells. Have I mentioned that the Cold War Kids are touring with the White Stripes? Very impressive. That means you can see them at the Forum on September 19th. I saw the Little Ones last Sunday at the Little Radio barbeque. I hadn’t seen them in a while, and they were still impressive. I can’t wait to hear the new album. Two great local bands in a good setting and it’s for a good cause.

Also Recommended:
Menomena / All Smiles @ Troubadour (Sold Out) – The new Menomena record is one of my favorites of the half year. It’s a little bit experimental in the TV on the Radio way, but still accessible. You can stream the album from Barsuk HERE. All Smiles is all around good guy, Jim Fairchild from Grandaddy. His new album’s more singer-songwritery than his old band.
Brian Wilson @ Pasadena Civic Auditorium ($43-67) – Longtime readers know I’m a huge Brian Wilson and Beach Boys fan. Tonight he promises to play his greatest hits. I saw the Smile tour twice and the Pet Sounds tour once, so I’m sitting this one out.
The Switch @ the Echo (Free) - I missed their Spaceland show on Sunday...

Also Appearing:
LCD Soundsystem / Yacht @ El Rey (Sold Out) - Dan’s got a review and some photos of last night’s show up HERE.
Yo Majesty / White Rabbits / DJ Peanut Butter Wolf @ Cinespace – Peanut Butter Wolf’s DJ’ing seven styles of music for seven straight nights all around LA. I’m curious about these White Rabbits guys, but I’ll probably wait to see them tomorrow at Spaceland.
The Duke Spirit @ Spaceland ($10) – Brash, British, Bluesy female fronted band that gets compared to PJ Harvey and the Kills.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Spoon Tickets on Sale

Who: Spoon in Concert
When: September 10th and 11th
Where: Henry Fonda Theatre
How: Tickets are on sale now through Musictoday (you can save some service charges)
Spoon's new album, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga comes out on July 10th on Merge Records.

Monday Night Music Options 6/11/07

Austin's Brothers & Sisters Play Spaceland Tonight

Tivo Alert: El-P on Conan
All Smiles @ Sea Level (Free) 7:00PM
Tonight's Pick:
The Deadly Syndrome / Brothers & Sisters / Wounded Cougar / Juliette & the Licks @ Spaceland (Free) – This will be packed. The Deadly Syndrome put on a good show. I saw the very end of Brothers & Sisters set yesterday at Little Radio and really liked them. They’re an Austin, country-rock band. Juliette & the Licks is Juliette Lewis. Wounded Cougar is a Beck-affiliated ironic metal band that falls somewhere between Spinal Tap and Tenacious D.
Other Free Shows:
Thailand / Death to Anders / Repeater / Expo 70 @ Silverlake Lounge (Free) – The second Monday of Thailand’s residency. Nice lineup.
Burning Brides / Thee LA Gentleman Callers / The Starlite Desperation @ the Echo (Free) - The heaviest of the free lineups.
Hymns / Mezzanine Owls / The Parson Red Heads / Frankel @ Viper Room ($10 or free if you message the Viper Room on Myspace) – Solid lineup.
Abe Lincoln Story @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Big buzz, but sold out:
The Pipettes / Smoosh @ Troubadour (Sold Out) – The Pipettes photograph really well. It’s all so gimmicky, but cute I suppose.
LCD Soundsystem / Yacht @ El Rey (Sold Out) – Critical darlings and dance party favorites. The second of three sold out shows.
Also appearing:
The Narrator @ Knitting Factory

Division Day Sign to Eenie Meenie

Division Day recently signed to locally based, Eenie Meenie Records. Their debut full-length will be re-released in September. The guys are currently recording new material. In addition to the Sea Level Going Away Party that we're presenting at Safari Sam's on the 22nd, you can catch them opening for the Fratellis at the Avalon on June 16th.
Download "Lights Out"
I took these photos at their most recent Spaceland show. You can see a few more on my Flickr account -

New Pornographers Tickets on Sale

What: The New Pornographers Live in Concert
Where: Henry Fonda
When: September 19th and September 20th
How: Buy tickets now through DucatKing and avoid some of the Ticketmaster fees

Their new album comes out on Matador on 8/21/07. Download "My Rights Versus Yours"

Friday, June 08, 2007

Weekend Music Options

Saturday's Pick:
Airborne Toxic Event / The Happy Hollows / Radars to the Sky @ Troubadour - Nice local lineup. Airborne Toxic Event has a new video that you can see on Buzz Bands, Little Radio, etc.

Also Appearing:

Gwendolyn & the Good Time Gang @ House of Blues
Bryan Scary @ Knitting Factory
The Berg Sans Nipple @ the Scene - Team Love recording artists.
Jon Brion @ Largo - Increasingly rare appearance.
Bedroom Walls / Kind Hearts & Coronets / 8-Bit @ Mr. T’s Bowl ($7) - Low key on the east side.
MOCA After Dark: The Deadly Syndrome - If you want to take in some art and you can't make it over to Spaceland on Monday nights.

Sunday's Pick:

The Raveonettes / The Little Ones / Brothers and Sisters @ Little Radio Warehouse - 1218 Long Beach Avenue ($10) - The good news is that Little Radio caught the theif that messed things up for all of us. The bad news is that it's 21+ and $10 now.


Marty Stuart / Porter Wagoner @ Safari Sam’s ($35 adv / $45 dos) - I've been in a Porter Wagoner phase lately. He's a country legend. Soon he'll be opening for the White Stripes at Madison Square Garden.


The Switch @ Spaceland (Free) - Recommended local music. The Switch have become a favorite of the LA bloggers (for good reason). If you can't make it Sunday night, come to the Sea Level Going Away party on June 22nd at Safari Sam's.

Also Appearing:
The One Am Radio / Mia Doi Todd @ Tangier - Mellow, electronic infused singer-songwriters.
LCD Soundsystem @ El Rey (Sold Out) - For the dance party crowd.
Part Time Punks: Chrome @ the Echo - Always a big event.


Steven Patrick at the Hollywood Bowl Tonight
Tonight's Pick:
Morrissey @ Hollywood Bowl (Sold Out) – Shows like this are one of the reasons we live in LA. He’s about the closest thing to a crooner that I like (and he’s an amazing live performer).
Other Choices:
The Raveonettes / Midnight Movies / The Pity Party @ the Echo ($15)
Bryon Scary @ Safari Sam’s – Download “Misery Loves Company
Jon Brion @ Largo ($10) – He doesn’t do this much anymore.
Diplo / Low B @ the Echoplex ($15) – Hollertronix dance party.
Hearts of Palm UK @ El Cid ($8)
Charlie Wadhams @ Tangier ($10)

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Thursday Night Music Options 6/7/07

Is it sad when you're happy you only had to work 11 hours in one day? That's what happened to me yesterday.
Lots of good choices tonight, depending on the mood you're in.
Tonight's Options:
Let’s Go Sailing / Bedroom Walls / Whispertown 2000 / Quazar and the Bamboozled @ Troubadour ($10) – They were on tour when the national distribution kicked in, so this is the record release party for Let’s Go Sailing. They’re joined by three other quality local bands. I've written about LGS a lot. They're album was in my top 10 of local releases last year, they've been on KCRW a lot, their songs have been in Grey's Anatomy, etc....
Unsane / 400 Blows @ Spaceland ($12) – Veteran noise rockers.
Tennessee 3 @ Safari Sam’s ($25-$40) – For the country music fans. Johnny Cash’s “legendary band.” Once in college I passed on really good tickets (like first 10 rows good) to see Johnny Cash because I thought it was too expensive (like $20). I’ve regretted it ever since.
Mice Parade / Tom Brosseau @ the Echo ($15) – Mice Parade plays the easy on the ears indie electronic music.
The Kaiser Chiefs / The Airborne Toxic Event @ Henry Fonda ($23) – The Kaiser Chiefs always have one or two good tracks on each record. If you can’t get in tonight, local favorites, The Airborne Toxic Event are also playing Saturday at the Troubadour.
Henry Clay People / The Kris Special @ Mr. T’s Bowl – For the low key indie people.
The Mae Shi / Anavan @ the Smell ($5) – For the all ages punk rock crowd.
Burlesque a Go Go: Peachfuzz / The Shakes @ the Scene – A little Burlesque, a little Teenacide Records and a little Jim Freek.
Steel / The Prix @ Canter’s (Free)
The VLA @ Boardner’s

Convenience Charge This

I just got a coupon in the mail for 25% off Brian Wilson tickets. I was thinking, not bad, not bad. Then I went on Ticketmaster. LOOK AT THOSE convenience charges. $22.40 per ticket on a $42.75 ticket. That's outrageous. 52%. If anybody's interested, good tickets still remain for Tuesday's show.

Brian WilsonThe Pasadena Civic, Pasadena, CA Tue, Jun 12, 2007 08:00 PM
Your Ticket(s)
Ticket Price US $42.75
Building Facility Charge US $2.00
Convenience Charge US $22.40

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Wednesday Night Music Options 6/6/07

Tonight's Options:
Anavan / The Mormons / Bloody Robots / The Shark That Ate My Friend @ the Scene – LA Underground presents this show. If you’re over 21, it’s nice when Smell bands play other venues so you can partake in a beverage. As Anavan says, “Shake your fanny like a tranny.”
Morrissey @ Riverside Municipal Auditorium (Sold Out) – Anybody else going to the Bowl? Anybody know what happened to my f’ing tickets?
The Front / Mezzanine Owls / Sunday Drivers @ Troubadour ($8) – See Bronson’s preview HERE and HERE. Rock Insider presents this show.
Club NME: Flash Hawk Parlor Ensemble / Horse Feathers / Tom Heinl @ Spaceland ($12) – Flash Hawk Parlor Ensemble features a couple of the Decemberists.
The Softlightes @ Silverlake Lounge ($8)

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Tuesday Night Music Options 6/5/07

Dead Ponies Play the Scene Tonight

Anybody make it to Deadly Syndrome last night? I was stuck at work past the time they went on.
Tonight's Pick:
Dead Ponies @ the Scene – I like these guys. They’re an atmospheric local band that also likes to rock. Along the same lines as Darker My Love.
Also Appearing:
Young Galaxy @ Spaceland ($8) – Space rock from the ex-touring guitarist from Stars. They’re on the Arts & Crafts label.
Low End Theory Club: Mia Doi Todd @ Little Temple ($5) – Low End Theory moved from Wednesday to Tuesday and from downtown to Silver Lake.
The Cliks @ the Echo ($10) – Transgender lead singer and androgynous band.
Morrissey @ Ventura Theatre – I’m waiting for the Hollywood Bowl show on Friday.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Monday Night Music Options 6/4/07

Anybody make it to the Little Radio barbeque yesterday? Iz hearz somez majorz douchebagz (and their fanz) werez inz attendanz. The Little Radio guys are the nicest guys in the world. It's sad when junkie losers (or even worse, fake junkie losers) try to mess it up for everybody. I'm looking forward to next Sunday's show with the Raveonettes and the Little Ones. In related news, if you know who stole the computers and cell phone from Little Radio during the show, then fuck you because I'm sure you already sold them for drug money.

Tonight's Pick:
The Deadly Syndrome / The Phoenix Foundation / Faker @ Spaceland (Free) – The Deadly Syndrome are a local, upbeat indie band with an album coming out on Dim Mak Records. They’re the Monday night resident band in June, and well worth checking out if you’re fans of Oh No! Oh My!, Tapes ‘n’ Tapes and those sorts of bands. Bronson at Buzz Bands has a post on New Zealand’s, The Phoenix Foundation HERE. Faker are an Australian band; this is their first US gig tonight.

Also recommended:
Wiskey Biscuit / Spindrift @ Safari Sam’s ($7 or $5 w/ flyer) – Wiskey Biscuit have been on the scene for over a decade. There was a time when you’d see them as regularly as you see the Parson Red Heads today. On the cusp of big things many times, they never quite broke outside of LA. They’re always tons of fun to see live. You can see the guys in Future Pigeon as well.
Thailand / Coco B’s / I Make This Sound @ Silverlake Lounge (Free) – Thailand are a promising new indie band. They’re the Silverlake Lounge’s house band each Monday in June.

I Know less about these, but they're free too:
Something for Rockets / Low vs. Diamond @ Viper Room – RSVP to the bands to get in for free. Otherwise $10.
The Monolators @ the Scene (Free)
Burning Brides / Lion Fever @ the Echo (Free) – Burning Brides are the Monday night house band all month at the Echo. They’re loud rock.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Weekend Music

I had a big post prepared on Thursday for the weekend music options, but my computer ate it. I'm taking it easy this weekend, watching a lot of television. I'm currently watching the NBA Playoffs and they've shown that VW commercial with Jeff Tweedy or Wilco doing "The Thanks I Get" numerous times. Tweedy did the song on his "Sunken Treasure" DVD and Wilco performed it on Conan. It's a little unsettling to hear Tweedy in a commercial, but selling it out has become acceptable. Last night I saw that new Sears commercial with The 88's "Coming Home." The 88 recently signed with Island and they're in the studio with Babyface. Very odd. I've always liked their music, but I haven't seen them live in a while. I noticed in their new promo photos that some of the original members were missing and those hideous suits were gone. You might remember in my post on October 20, 2005, I told them to lose those suits.

Anybody see Autolux and Deerhoof at the Natural History museum last night? How about the Raveonettes at Spaceland?

A few options tonight. Laura Veirs @ Largo; Manu Caho @ LA Sports Arena; Rhett Miller @ Malibu Inn; Louis XIV @ the Roxy; the High Strung @ Spaceland

A few good options on Sunday:
Little Radio's getting their Summer Camp Sunday barbeques going again. Tomorrow offers the Willowz, the Pity Party and Western States Motel. Next Sunday offers the Raveonettes, Special Little Guests and Brothers & Sisters.

The Echo's weekly free celebration of country music, Grane Ole Echo, continues with Dave Insley. He's worth checking out.

If you're looking for a Sunday night party, Part Time Punks at the Echo is always happening. Pretty Girls Make Graves sold out the Troubadour.

The Hold Steady @ El Rey

Everywhere you go in LA, you're surrounded by hipsters. Go grocery shopping - hipsters. Go to 7-11 - hipsters. Go to Target - hipsters. Granted, there are a lot of different types of hipsters. For my purposes I mean fashion-conscious, young people out in public. There are hippie hipsters in Echo Park (young but trying to look older than they are, heroin thin, pale, long hair, 60/70s clothes). Cahuenga corridor hipsters (the kind Cobrasnake likes to photograph - youngest subset, cocaine thin, pale, short angular hair, 80s clothes). West side hipsters (youngish, but trying to look younger than they are, gym thin, $300 designer jeans). Apparently the only place you won't see any type of hipster (not even a geek-chick hipster) in LA is at a Hold Steady concert.

Peter Jackson - Prototypical Hold Steady fan

When all the guys in your band look like the drummer from Cheap Trick, it's probably tough to attract good looking women to your shows. As a result, you end up with a bunch of regular guys who probably like to get laid as much as anybody else, but probably have regular 9-5 jobs, and aren't willing to put in the time to cultivate a look. Basically a Hold Steady concert looks a class of 1988 Midwestern high school reunion.

Bun E. Carlos - Prototypical Hold Steady Band Member?

I went into the show a bit skeptical. I'd heard some of the recorded material and wasn't that moved by it. Seeing them finally allowed me to see the attraction. It's the type of music the average dude can relate to. Substance over style. The band looks like their audience. They're not fashion-conscious and they probably had day jobs at Initech a few years ago. These guys aren't frat boys, or pencil neck geeks or hipsters. They're the guys Judd Apatow makes movies about. Guys that like to drink beer, watch ESPN and maybe eat mushrooms on special occasions. They might go to Comic-Con, but they're the cool guys there.
So what does the music sound like? The Hold Steady sounds like Bruce Springsteen fronting Thin Lizzy. The lead singer wears a guitar as a necklace. He usually only manipulates the strings to tune it between songs. While he sings, he needs his hands free to gesticulate like a rapper (well maybe not a rapper, but at least like a singer who gesticulates wildly with his hands). Meanwhile the music has power chords. Lots of power chords. Power chords that could fill a stadium. The songs are littered with characters that could be in a Fante, Kerouac or Bukowski novel. Every single song (I'm not exaggerating here) is about either drinking, fucking or getting high. Most are about all three.

I must confess that I got a bit bored with it, and ending up leaving before the encore. The Hold Steady has a great connection with its audience, and at least I finally understand the attraction. I'm the first to admit that I like minor chord, melancholy music way too much (pretty much the opposite of the what the Hold Steady plays).