Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween - Live Music Options

The Deadly Syndrome Play Spaceland Tonight (with Ghost in the foreground)
I went to my Halloween party on Saturday. Tonight I'll see some music (haven't decided if I'm in the mood to dress up again).
Wednesday 10/31/07:

Tivo Alert: The Sex Pistols on Craig Ferguson (they were almost unbearable on Leno last night); the Go Team! On Letterman

[PICK] Club NME: The Deadly Syndrome / The Movies / In Waves @ Spaceland ($5 list through the Movies Myspace page) – Two of my favorite local bands performing live (the Deadly Syndrome and the Movies). Plus, they’re both a lot of fun. I haven’t seen In Waves yet.

[RECOMMENDED] Henry Clay People / Radars to the Sky / The Monolators / Peter & the Wolf / Service Group / The Natural Disasters / Downtown Union / The Fresas @ All Star Lanes ($15 includes bowling shoes) – Sponsored by Rock Insider and Radio Free Silver Lake. A great opportunity to catch up on a ton of up ‘n’ coming local acts, bowl and hang out with good folks.

[RECOMMENDED] Low End Theory: Daedelus / Themselves (Jel & Doseone) @ Airliner ($5 w/costume or $100 without) – Good lineup.

Aqueduct / Tristeza @ Echo ($12) – Indie. Georgie James canceled.

The Pogues / Ted Leo @ the Wiltern ($50)

CeU @ El Rey ($25) – The female Seu Jorge?

DJ Krush @ Knitting Factory ($20)

The Mythical Creatures @ Viper Room – They promise costumes and Halloween songs.

Photo by Sylvia via Sinking Radio's Myspace

Open Letter to Neil Young

Dear Neil,

I hate to say it, but you’re just another greedy hippie. Yesterday I tried to place most of the blame on your overpriced tickets on the concert promoter, but as I reflected, there’s nobody to blame but you. When you’re the headliner of a show that charges $257 for tickets (and tickets that are 100 feet away from the stage) you’re setting expectations incredibly high. I have a feeling that you despise a lot of your fans (and after listening to them drunkenly shout at you between songs and watching them play air guitar all night long, I can understand why) but that’s no reason to take it out on the rest of us.

I’m willing to bet that you and I had the same reaction when we walked into the Nokia Theatre LA Live (or whatever it’s called). From the giant corporate logo on the side of the building, to the bombardment of the senses from the giant TV screens outside and in, to the new carpet smell (oddly mixed with some weird shit/barf smell), the place ain’t got no soul. It’s basically a 7,000 capacity, cold warehouse with corporate boxes and cramped seats. The big selling points from the developers are the state of the art sound, the fact (?) that no seat is more than a couple of hundred feet from the stage and the giant TV screens next to the stage. But when you saw those TV screens you probably went apeshit. “If the fans want to watch me on TV they can rent one of my fucking DVDs,” I imagine you said (or thought). So, for better or worse, those TV screens were dark last night.

And your performance? Starting off with the acoustic set and then having an intermission before the electric part was a good idea. “From Hank to Hendrix” isn’t my favorite song off of Harvest Moon, but a decent kicking off point (your fans cheering and applauding throughout the song was distracting, but not your fault). “Ambulance Blues” = great choice. I never thought I’d hear it. “Sad Movies” = interesting and obscure, but maybe a non-essential choice. The story about the Norwegians from the cover band was fun. “A Man Needs a Maid” sent a couple of chills up my spine when you started. The lyrics have always felt a little misogynistic, but it’s also autobiographical and honest and a classic. People were chuckling around me when you switched over to that organ to simulate the overblown strings. “No One Seems to Know” = good obscure choice. “Harvest” = great choice. It was another one that gave me some chills when it started. “Campaigner” = ok choice. Substituting George Bush for Richard Nixon (and the crowd’s reaction) was pretty obvious. “After the Gold Rush” = great choice. The old dork behind me who tried to clap and couldn’t keep time distracted me the whole time, so I didn’t get chills. “Mellow My Mind” = good choice. “Love Art Blues” = another good obscure choice that I didn’t think I’d hear. “Love Is a Rose” = good choice. And that concluded your acoustic set. It was an interesting and obscure set list that I can get behind. Unfortunately your fans distracted me and took me out of the moment during most of the songs.

I’ve never seen you electric, so I was excited but apprehensive for the second half of the show. Coming out of the gates with “The Loner” was a great choice. It’s one of my favorite early songs. When you followed it up with “Everybody Knows This is Nowhere” I was preparing to be blown away. But then you played “Dirty Old Man.” It’s kinda fun in spirit, but wouldn’t make a list of my top 100 Neil Young songs. And then you played “Spirit Road.” Bleh. When you followed it up with “Bad Fog of Loneliness” I thought we were back in business. And then “Winterlong” = great choice. I was happy with “Oh, Lonesome Me” too. “The Believer” is another OK song from the new album. Whatever. But then you lost me for good when you stretched out and jammed on “No Hidden Path” for about 25 minutes. Why Neil? If you wanna jam, pick a classic. Then you left the stage and the first song of your encore was “Cinnamon Girl.” It’s a classic and a crowd pleaser. Fine. And then you ended with “Tonight’s the Night” and finally lashed out. “If Bruce Berry was here he would have fixed this fucking speaker by now.” All in all it was a pretty good show, but not worth the cash. I would have walked away happy if the tickets had been $200 cheaper (each). I won’t be going back on Friday.

By the way, we missed your wife’s set. The line to get beer was so slow moving that it took over a half hour to get through it. We let some dude cut in front of us at the front because he offered to buy us whatever we wanted (2 Buds for $12.50 and a champagne for $12.50). At least that made me feel better about paying $25 to park. As for the “state of the art sound?” There was a distracting surround sound effect and I kept hearing the high end (mostly the high-hat) over my right shoulder. And there was an annoying buzz in the front speaker for more than a couple of the acoustic numbers. For your fans who are used to seeing shows at the Staples or Forum, it was probably an improvement over that.

Your fan,

P.S. In case you’re kicking back in your pickup getting high and thinking to yourself, “I wonder what Duke would like hear” I’ve got some ideas (granted, you’ve worn a few of these out): “Lookin’ For a Love,” “Birds,” “See the Sky About to Rain,” “Cowgirl in the Sand,” “Helpless,” “Tell Me Why,” “Only Love Can Break Your Heart,” “Are You Ready for The Country, “Old Man,” “The Needle and the Damage Done,” “On the Beach,” “Roll Another Number (for the Road),” “Danger Bird,” “Cortez the Killer” or “Like a Hurricane” (to jam on), “Long May You Run,” “Hold Back the Tears,” “Will to Love,” “Peace of Mind,” “Already One,” “Comes a Time,” “Pocahontas,” “Unknown Legend,” “You and Me,” “Harvest Moon,” “Old King,” “Good to See You,” “Daddy Went Walkin’,” “This Old Guitar.”

P.P.S. I still love you.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Tuesday Night Live Music Listings - 10/30/07

Neil Young Plays the Nokia Theatre LA Live Tonight

Tuesday 10/30/07:

Tivo Alert: The Sex Pistols on Leno

[PICK] Neil Young / Pegi Young @ Nokia Theatre L.A. Live ($75-$257) – I probably listen to Neil Young more than any other artist. His set lists have been great. The fact that this show didn’t sell out is a testament to the shitty job that the promoter did. The ticket prices are outrageous. They added a second show before the first one sold it. They probably offered an insane guarantee. I’m seeing one of the all-time favorite artists and I have buyer’s remorse.

[RECOMMENDED] Broken Social Scene Plays Kevin Drew’s Spirit If @ Orpheum ($23) – Broken Social Scene’s a pretty good band. The new album’s pretty boring though.

[RECOMMENDED] Thurston Moore @ Echoplex ($20) – He is Thurston Moore (which can be a good or bad thing).

[RECOMMENDED] Battles / No Age @ Henry Fonda ($18) – For the more experimentally inclined math rockers. I wasn’t as into the Battles record as most. I still haven’t seen No Age.

Ted Leo / Quasi @ El Rey ($16) – I saw Ted Leo recently. He was OK. Quasi used to be pretty fun to see.

New Young Pony Club @ Echo ($18) – For the dance rock crowd.

Regina Spektor @ The Wiltern ($23-30)

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band @ LA Sports Arena ($90)

Fatlip and Tre Hardson @ Knitting Factory ($18) – For the hip-hop fans.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Monday Night Live Music Options 10/29/07

Aaron Espinoza Plays the Echo Tonight

Monday 10/29/07:

Free and Local:

Castledoor / Aaron Espinoza (of Earlimart) / Frankel @ the Echo (Free / $5 under 21) – The last night of the Castledoor residency. Kevin Bronson just named them one of his bands to watch in the LA Times Calendar section. Aaron Espinoza of Earlimart produced Castledoor’s album. Frankel has been on tour as an additional guitarist with Earlimart.

Oliver Future / Saint Motel / Steve Barton & the Oblivion Click @ Spaceland (Free) – Last night of the

Radars to the Sky / Porterville @ Viper Room ($10 or Free with RSVP to the bands or Viper Room)

Aushua / In Waves @ Silverlake Lounge (Free) – Last night of the residency.

Other Options:

Ghostface Killah / Rakim / Brother Ali @ House of Blues Sunset ($35) – Strong hip-hop lineup.

Limbeck @ Hotel Café – Hotel Café has been recording all of these performances and they’ll be giving away a free 10 song download of the best songs on their website in November.

MC Chris @ Knitting Factory ($12)

Chirgilchin @ Safari Sam’s ($15 or $7 w/ student ID)

SOL Unless You Bought Tickets:

Queens of the Stone Age / Mastodon @ Nokia Theatre LA Live (Sold Out) – I’ve seen both of these bands. I like Mastodon, but something about seeing them in such a nice setting seems wrong.

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band @ LA Sports Arena (Sold Out)

Tegan & Sara / Northern State @ Orpheum Theatre (Sold Out) – Tegan & Sara are the Akbar & Jeff of indie folk.

Saves the Day @ Troubadour (Sold Out)

Avenged Sevenfold @ Wiltern (Sold Out)

Photo by Sylvia via Sinking Radio's Myspace

Ticket Giveaway - Sigur Ros Screening & Acoustic Performance

What: Ticket Giveaway for Sigur Ros Acoustic Performance and Screening of “Heima”

Where: Vista Theatre in Los Feliz

When: Thursday, November 1st at 8:00 PM (doors at 7:00 PM)

Why: Sigur Ros is a ridiculously powerful, epic band. “Heima” is a documentary that chronicles their unique tour of Iceland. “Beautifully shot at unique concert venues —an abandoned fish factory, a protest camp at a controversial dam, a small town coffee shop—the film’s varied backdrops reflect the band’s dense spiritual sound. The journey becomes the quintessential alt-music experience.” - Natalie McMenemy

How: I have one pair of tickets for the November 1st performance and screening. Send me an email [dukeufo at hotmail] by Wednesday at 2:00PM to be entered in the contest. Tell me the most unique (or your favorite) place you’ve ever seen a concert.

Buy tickets on Ticketweb for the performance and screening
Read about the documentary on Pitchfork
Buy the DVD on Amazon (available November 20th)
Buy tickets for the AFI film fest screenings (no live performance)

Friday, October 26, 2007

Oasis: Limited Edition 7" Giveaway

What: Limited edition 7” single of Oasis’ “Lord Don’t Slow Me Down” [I’ve got two of them to give away.]

Why: To bring attention to the November 6th double DVD release of Oasis: Lord Don’t Slow Me Down. The first disc is a feature length tour documentary featuring a commentary track with the band as well as a Noel Gallagher Q&A. The second disc is Oasis live at City of Manchester Stadium on 2nd July 2005. It features sixteen tracks shot in HD with stereo and surround sound. I haven’t seen it yet, but I heard the documentary is pretty hilarious. The Gallaghers usually are.

How: Send me an email [dukeufo at hotmail] telling me your favorite thing about Oasis. It could be serious, or it could be funny (I’m hoping for a funny story). The deadline for the contest is midnight on Halloween. All entrants will be added to Oasis newsletter email list unless you tell me you want to opt out of it.

Buy the iTunes digital exclusive single for “Lord Don’t Slow Me Down”
Order the DVD from Amazon
Watch Oasis videos on Youtube

Weekend Music Options 10/26/07 - 10/28/07

Caribou Play the Troubadour on Friday Night

I tend to have problems with the Wiltern. The sightlines kind of suck (there seems to always be some cornfed frat boy in front me) and the sound quality is hit or miss depending on where you’re standing. Last night at the Blonde Redhead/Autolux show I realized that if you’re in the pit, it sounds great and you can see everything perfectly. It was my first time really seeing Autolux and they were good. I’m anxious to hear their new album when it comes out early next year.

Blonde Redhead is just a fantastic band. Being so close to the stage, I realized that they’ve got a growing dependency on pre-recorded backing tracks and vocals. It didn’t diminish the overall experience, but I caught myself wondering a couple of times if Kazu was pulling a Milli Vanilli. (I think she was singing all the lead vocal parts.) Their songs are great, it’s fun to watch Kazu get lost in the music, Simone’s a brilliant drummer and Amedeo’s songs bring a rush of adrenaline. I never get sick of seeing them live.

Friday 10/26/07:

[Pick] Caribou / Born Ruffians @ Troubadour ($14) – Dan Snaith of Caribou is a really talented dude. His new record (the first on Merge) is more song oriented than his earlier works. While the records are pretty electronic, he brings a full band with him on tour.

UNKLE / Goon Moon @ Echoplex ($18) – Goon Moon is Chris Goss (Masters of Reality) and Twiggy from Marilyn Manson. UNKLE is James Lavelle.

Monsters Are Waiting / War Tapes @ the Echo ($12)

Eagles / Dixie Chicks @ Nokia Theatre (Sold Out) – I imagine a lot of cokehead attorneys.

Final Fantasy / Cadence Weapon @ Glasshouse in Pomona ($12) – These bands also appear at the Troubadour on Sunday.

[Recommended] Kris Kristofferson @ Smothers Theatre in Malibu (Sold Out) – I’m a huge fan. I saw him at Stagecoach and really enjoyed it.

Phosphorescent / Robert Francis @ El Cid ($8) – Indie folkie, presented by the Aquarium Drunkard.

Peter and the Wolf / Birds & Batteries @ Pehrspace – Jaxart (Rock Insider) presents this show.

[Recommended] Blonde Redhead / The Mae Shi @ House of Blues Anaheim ($20) – Blonde Redhead is so good.

[Recommended] Mike Stinson @ Cinema Bar in Culver City (Donations) – For the country fans. Cinema Bar’s a lot of fun.

Saturday 10/27/07:

Richard Buckner / David Dondero @ Spaceland ($10) – I’ve seen Buckner before. He’s a gruff voiced, talented Americana troubadour. David Dondero’s on the Saddle Creek affiliated label, Team Love. He’s a well respected singer-songwriter too.
Download David Dondero’s “Rothko Chapel” and “When the Heart Breaks Deep

1990s / Airborne Toxic Event @ Troubadour ($12) – 1990s will also be opening for Roky Erickson on Sunday at El Rey. If you like poppy, post-punk then this is your show. Airborne Toxic Event were just named a band you need to get to know by Kevin Bronson in the LA Times (along with Castledoor and the Deadly Syndrome). They definitely have the potential to crossover.
The Softlightes @ the Scene ($8) – The Softlightes record is a bit overlooked.

David Kilgour / Euros Childs @ the Echo ($12) – Early show. David Kilgour from the Clean. The Clean were the first of those Flying Nun bands from New Zealand. Pretty good stuff. I never got any of his solo records though.

Eagles / Dixie Chicks @ Nokia Theatre (Sold Out) – No matter how much you dislike Don Henley, I still think it’s a little unfair that people hate the Eagles so much. I wish Gram Parsons would have lived longer and Gene Clark wouldn’t have killed himself with alcohol, but the Eagles had five or six good songs. That said, it makes me really sad that they sold out six nights and Neil Young can’t sell out one. Guess you gotta blame the Dixie Chicks for that.

The Donnas / Donita Sparks @ the Roxy ($15) – I saw the Donna about six years ago. It was fine.

Serj Tankian @ House of Blues (Sold Out) – System of a Down.

Sunday 10/28/07:
[Recommended] Grand Ole Echo: Mike Stinson / Old Californio @ the Echo (Free) – Show starts at 5PM and Stinson goes on at 7:30. My friend Tita swears by Old Californio too.

Pinback / Frightened Rabbit @ Wiltern – Pinback make really good, layered and produced indie rock albums. Unfortunately their live show has never matched up. Seeing them at the Wiltern seems like it could be a bad idea, but there’s always that chance that they’ll live up to the albums.

Roky Erickson / 1990s @ El Rey ($26) – The Roky Erickson cult is interesting. Many credit the 13th Floor Elevators with inventing psychedelic rock. While, the song “You’re Gonna Miss Me” is pretty great, the rest of the material doesn’t do much for me. The documentary about him, You’re Gonna Miss Me, is fairly interesting. It’s great that he’s gotten help for his mental illness and he’s able to tour again. 1990s is a weird opener.

Final Fantasy / Cadence Weapon @ the Troubadour ($12) – Final Fantasy is baroque popster and a touring member of Arcade Fire, Owen Pallett. Cadence Weapon’s an underground Canadian rapper. They’re both well regarded by critics.

Part Time Punks: Clipd Beaks @ the Echo – Just got this one in the mail, but I haven’t listened to it yet. They’re on Lovepump United which gives them so good cred. Download “Melter”

Hot Hot Heat / Bedouin Soundclash / De Novo Dahl @ the Fonda ($20) – Indie

Variety Show: Neil Hamburger @ Spaceland – Comedy.

The One AM Radio / Josh Ottum @ Tangier ($8) – Singer-songwritery.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Wednesday Night Wrap-Up and Thursday Night Preview

Blonde Redhead Play the Wiltern Tonight

Last night I went to that crazy Frederick’s of Hollywood fashion show at the Palladium. We got there about 8:00PM to try to avoid a long line, but they weren’t letting people in yet, so the line was already fairly long. We got to the front of the line and realized we had to walk the red carpet. The red carpet’s fine when you can just push through and avoid eye contact with anyone. Unfortunately I got stuck behind John Cho who played Harold in Harold and Kumar (a very funny film). The photographers were snapping away trying to get his attention and I’m standing there like a doofus just trying to get by him. No dice. Once we got inside the Palladium was completely transformed. Red curtains everywhere. Several free bars set up. A girl in lingerie suspended on a moon from the ceiling and girls in lingerie walking around serving candy. Those situations demand alcohol, so I proceeded to the bar. We stood around and waited for the action to commence. The only familiar faces I saw (other than celebs) were Sea Level Todd, Silversun Nikki and Radar Bro Jim. After a few cocktails, Eagles of Death Metal got started on a side stage. I’ve never listened to their records, but they played about four or five songs (ironic metal with lifted riffs) and it was pretty fun live. As they finished a curtain opened on the other side of the Palladium and the Silversun Pickups started. I hadn’t seen them in six months (and that was at the Silverlake Lounge) so I was pretty amazed at how good they sounded. They’re road tested and they completely filled the space with noise (my ears were still ringing this morning). They seemed to be having a lot of fun. Crooner was bashing the drums like Animal. Aubert leapt off the stage and ran around the front of the stage playing guitar. Their pal from Snow Patrol joined them on guitar for a couple of songs. They only played maybe four songs, but I was very impressed. As soon as they finished, the lingerie show started. There was a celebrity designed corset show followed by the Frederick’s stuff. Pretty entertaining. That was followed by a Dita Von Teese burlesque performance (which I managed to completely miss while waiting for drinks). Right after that was the Foo Fighters. They were loud and kind of the perfect band for that environment. I’ve never been a fan of their albums, but they were alright to see with free booze. They even threw in a cover of Prince’s “Darling Nikki.” All in all a very weird night. I managed to miss pretty every celeb who was in attendance (with the exception of John Cho who seemed to be standing in front of me all night). I would have liked to see Kristen Bell. You can see photos from the night HERE and HERE and HERE and HERE and HERE if you’re so inclined. It was an odd, but entertaining night.

Thursday's Pick (10/25/07):

Blonde Redhead / Autolux @ Wiltern ($25) – Blonde Redhead is one of my favorite bands. From the first time I saw them at Spaceland (when the stage was still on the other side), I’ve been smitten. I almost skipped this show tonight, but a friend came through with free tickets, and I can’t turn that down. Local faves, Autolux are apparently putting out their next record early next year. It’s been a long time between records.

Also Appearing:

Sex Pistols @ Roxy (103.1 Winners) – The punk legends do an intimate reunion show before heading over to London. I’d see Johnny Rottten/Lydon anytime.

Two Ton Boa @ Spaceland ($8) – Female fronted, aggressive Kill Rock Stars band that gets compared to Sleater-Kinney.

The Good Life / Jonathan Rice / Art in Manila @ Troubadour (Sold Out) – Saddle Creek extravaganza (too bad Eric Bachmann’s not on the bill too).

The Pipettes / The Adored @ Echoplex ($15) – One of the better 1960’s girl group revivalist bands.

Nico Stai / Air Traffic @ the Echo (Free / $5 for under 21) – Night three in town for Air Traffic.

Gogol Bordello @ Mayan ($25) – Very popular, gypsy punk rock.

Josh Ritter / Eric Bachmann @ El Rey ($17) – I saw singer-songwriter Josh Ritter once at King King. He was pretty good.

Sinking with Sylvia (and Sometimes Todd)

Jim Putnam from the Radar Bros. will be the featured guest on Sinking with Sylvia (and Sometimes Todd) on Little Radio today. I used to consider the Radar Bros. my favorite band in LA, but it's been so long since they've put anything out I don't know anymore (their new record is coming out on Merge early next year). Tune in at 11:00AM. They'll also be giving away tickets to see Battles and No Age on the 30th at the Fonda. Should be a good show if you're not already going to Neil Young or Thurston Moore that night.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Pernice Brothers: "Monkey Suit"

This is my weekly reminder to listen to Sinking with Sylvia (and Sometimes Todd) on Little Radio tomorrow from 11:00AM to 1:00PM. I don't think they'll have a guest on tomorrow, but it will be fun to hear them bicker and they'll probably be giving away some pretty good tickets for some Goldenvoice show you want to go to.
As you know, I get to select one song each week. Then I recap why I chose that song on this blog. On September 20th, I chose the song "Monkey Suit" by Pernice Brothers. For my money, Joe Pernice is one of the most underrated songwriters around. The guy isn't obscure by any means, but I still don't think he gets the credit he deserves.
Pernice was in an alt-country, Sub Pop band called Scud Mountain Boys that I never found all that interesting. He got bored with the limitations of that and started the Pernice Brothers, releasing Overcome By Happiness in 1998. It was a pretty big departure (although Pitchfork would argue that) with Pernice showing off the Big Star, Teenage Fanclub, Brian Wilson and Left Banke influences. Pernice got in a pretty big feud with Sub Pop and now self releases his stuff.
"Monkey Suit" encapsulates what I like about Pernice's songwriting. He's obviously a sensitive guy (but he likes sports too, although that's not in the song) and the song describes the existential dilemma most of us face when we head off to work each day. We've all felt the life drain out of us on the commute to work. Pernice writes sad lyrics with a great melody over an upbeat pop song. It's something his heroes Morrissey and Marr did so well in the Smiths. If you're into power pop, orchestra pop and sunshine pop but you're not familiar with the Pernice Brothers, check them out.
Stream Pernice Brothers albums on the website

What's Happening on Wednesday

If you’re thinking about seeing Blonde Redhead tomorrow at the Wiltern, but thought it was too expensive, they’re now offering $10 tickets in the balcony. Just go to Ticketmaster and add balcony seats to your cart and they should show up for $10. The offer expires later tonight.

Wednesday's Picks (10/24/07):

Earlimart / Office @ Troubadour ($15) – Earlimart did some record release shows, then left for a month on the road. Now they’re home. Their new album’s worth checking out. Office is a high energy Chicago band that’s been getting pretty good reviews.

The Movies / The Happy Hollows @ Bordello ($5) – The Movies might be my favorite LA band to see live. Last time they played the Echo, it was one of their great shows. They’ve got some new songs up on Myspace. I read that the Silversun Pickups closed their Wiltern show last week with their cover of the Movies “Creation Lake.” The Happy Hollows are coming off an appearance at the Wiltern opening for Silversun Pickups and an Echo residency. I may not have gotten them at first, but they’re definitely starting to grow on me. Singer/guitarist Sarah Negahdari definitely has the spastic energy. But, I like when the bass player sings too. Pretty much every LA blog has been loving them for a while now. If I get out of this party I’m going to, this is where I’ll end up.

Kelly Willis @ Safari Sam’s ($20) – I think it’s great that Safari Sam’s is booking a lot of the alt country and Americana type of bands since the Echo, Spaceland and Troubadour tend to ignore a lot of them. Willis is a really talented Austin-based singer/songwriter. I saw her couple of times while I lived in Austin and really enjoyed it. She does a pretty great cover of Nick Drake’s “Time Has Told Me.”
Other Options:

Club NME: Air Traffic / Liam Finn @ Spaceland – Air Traffic’s a UK band that signed with EMI in the UK and will be released by Astralwerks in the US (next February). They’re doing the New York/LA circuit for a few shows. The limited bit I’ve heard sounds along the lines of Coldplay. Liam Finn is Neil Finn’s son (Crowded House / Split Enz). He’s been opening for and playing with Crowded House. His debut album won’t come out in the US until January. He’s supposed to be interesting to watch on stage (perhaps a little inspired by Jon Brion’s techniques).
Blackalicious @ the Roxy ($20) - Well respected hip-hop duo.

Eagles / Dixie Chicks @ Nokia Theatre (Sold Out) – The Nokia Theatre is getting good reviews. That’s a huge relief after paying so much for Neil Young tickets. Read a review of the Eagles/DC show at the LA Times.

Mum / Tom Brosseau @ Orpheum ($20) – I always found Mum a bit boring, but I haven’t heard them since they got rid of their original lead singer. It’s probably still pretty mellow.

Sia / Willoughby @ El Rey (Sold Out) – Sia’s living (at least part of the time) in Echo Park these days.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Highlights from Tuesday's Concert Calendar 10/23/07

Black Mountain Play the Echo Tonight
It's a ridiculously busy night for shows tonight and all this week. None of these shows tonight is sold out yet. It feels a little like there's gotten to be too much competition for shows in this town. It's good for the bands, because they get higher guarantees, but then fans are forced to see bands in venues that are a little too big (Interpol/Liars, Tokyo Police Club/White Rabbits), or else they're forced to pay too much for tickets (JAMC/BRMC). Don't mind me, just a mini-tirade for Tuesday.
Tuesday's Picks 10/23/07:

Black Mountain / The Cave Singers @ the Echo ($10) – This one gets listed first because it's a fair price for two pretty good indie bands. Black Mountain play dark, psychedelic music along the same lines of LA’s the Warlocks. They’ve been working on their new album for two years. Look for it in January on Jagjaguwar (one of my favorite labels this year). The Cave Singers are on Matador and play really damaged old school folk music. Their record’s worth checking out if you’re into that sort of thing.
Download Black Mountain’s “Druganaut
Download The Cave Singer’s “Seeds of Night

The Jesus and Mary Chain / Black Rebel Motorcycle Club @ Wiltern ($40 / $50 with all the svc charges) – It’s pretty odd that BRMC is opening for JAMC. I mean, that’s like getting Interpol to open for Joy Division (if Ian Curtis was alive of course). The fact that this isn’t sold out shows you how expensive this ticket is ($25 would be a much fairer price). If I hadn’t seen them six months ago, I’d still be tempted.

Interpol / Liars @ Forum ($25-32) – A couple of interesting bands in an awful venue (the Forum's one of the worst places I've ever seen a show - the Beastie Boys almost 10 years ago). Interpol’s hit or miss live. They should have done two nights at the Greek if they thought the demand was there. I think Farmer Dave’s still touring with Interpol on keys.

Pharoahe Monch @ Knitting Factory ($25) – Underground hip-hop legend who was in Organized Konfusion.

Let’s Independent: Light FM / Nightfur / Lo-Fi Sugar @ Boardner’s (Free) – I’m not super familiar with any of these bands, but Joe at Radio Free Silver Lake knows how to throw a good monthly party.
Ranch Party: Merle Jagger @ Spaceland – The Merle Jagger guys used to host this club night at the Lava Lounge before the Lava Lounge got shut down. This will happen once a month at Spaceland.
Other Options:

Tokyo Police Club / White Rabbits @ El Rey ($15) – Tokyo Police Club recently signed to Saddle Creek and started working on their debut album. I’m a little surprised that warrants headlining El Rey, but then again, I’m not a concert promoter. I saw White Rabbits at Spaceland in June and wrote that they were pretty good with a few standout tracks. I honestly can’t remember it at all now. Alcohol kills brain cells.

Man Man / Sleeping States @ Troubadour ($12) – Man Man had all the internet buzz 2 ½ years ago.

Kill the Complex @ Key Club (Free)

Luca @ Knitting Factory Alterknit ($5) – Early show.

Moving Units @ Viper Room (Free if you RSVP to Metromix)

Monday, October 22, 2007

Monday Night Music Options 10/22/07

Adeline Plays Echo Curio Tonight (Not Sea Level 'Cause it Died)

I was out of town for the weekend so I missed the Little Radio show, the Dr. Dog show and the Silversun Pickups show. But I drank a lot of wine and did see Triple Threat at a bar in a hotel. They played Steve Miller covers to a room full of people who danced about like me.

Free Shows:

Adeline / Tables & Chairs / Correatown @ Echo Curio [1519 Sunset Blvd] – Aaron from Le Switch is playing with Adeline tonight. Tables & Chairs is an instrumental band featuring Marcos, Brian and Stevie from the Movies.

Rademacher / I Make This Sound @ Viper Room ($10 or free with RSVP) – Monday night at the Viper Room continues to be well curated.

Castledoor / Twilight Sleep / The Flying Tourbillon Orchestra / The Monolators @ the Echo (Free) – Castledoor continue their Monday night residency. Their new record was recorded by Aaron from Earlimart. I haven’t really seen them yet, but Kevin Bronson at the LA Times is a big fan. Twilight Sleep

Oliver Future / Something for Rockets @ Spaceland (Free) – KCRW’s presenting the Oliver Future residency, which has helped ensure a good crowd every week.

Aushua / Eastern Conference Champions @ Silverlake Lounge (Free) – I saw Aushua at the Scene a couple of months ago. They’re a young OC band with anthemic songs and some good potential.

Other local residency:

Limbeck @ Hotel Café – Their Monday night residency continues.

Touring Show:

The Fiery Furnaces / Pit er Pat @ Troubadour ($15) – I’ve been told that they represent their town of Oak Park, IL very well. I’ve listened to their records and seen them live and they annoy me like you would not believe.

Outlying Areas:

The Jesus and Mary Chain / Evan Dando @ House of Blues Anaheim ($45) – I saw the JAMC show at the Glasshouse six months ago. I recommend seeing them, but I’m not sure it’s worth $45.

Hello Vegas / Maxeen / Pop Noir @ Detroit Bar in Costa Mesa (Free)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Weekend Live Music Options 10/19/07 - 10/21/07

No time to write much at the moment. That lineup at Little Radio on Friday night is particularly strong and the Dr. Dog show at the Troubadour on Saturday should be great if you didn't get Silversun Pickups tickets.

Friday 10/19/07:

Dios (Malos) / The Movies / Le Switch / The Submarines / Emma Burgess / Henry Clay People @ Little Radio Warehouse ($12) – A few of my favorite local bands and free Dewars all night long. Sounds like a good time.

Sunset Rubdown / Johnny & the Moon @ El Rey ($15) - Jeff Weiss wrote a very hyperbolic review of the new Sunset Rubdown for Stylus. I like to kid him.

The Black Lips @ Troubadour ($15)

Southern Culture on the Skids @ the Echo ($15)

Fool’s Gold Tour: A-Trak / Kid Sister @ the Roxy ($13.50) – Kid Sister’s been working with Kanye West.

Junior Brown @ Key Club ($22)

Adeline @ Pehrspace

Noodles @ El Cid ($8) - Japanese girl rock.

Saturday 10/20/07:

Dr. Dog / Apollo Sunshine @ Troubadour ($15) - One of my top albums of the year. I love Dr. Dog.

Silversun Pickups / The Happy Hollows / Midnight Movies @ the Wiltern (Sold Out) - What an ascension. Who woulda believed it?

The Black Lips / Pierced Arrows @ Echoplex ($15)

Eagles / Dixie Chicks @ Nokia Theatre (Sold Out)

Lucero / Bobby Bare Jr. @ El Rey ($15)

The Go Team / Bodies of Water @ Glasshouse ($15)

Policy @ the Scene

The Warlocks @ Safari Sam’s

West Indian Girl @ Spaceland ($10)

Raspberry Cocaine @ The Mountain

Sunday 10/21/07:

The Go Team! / Bodies of Water / Grande Ole Party @ Echoplex

Ken Andrews / Charlotte Martin @ Troubadour

Pierced Arrows @ Spaceland ($8)

Eagles / Dixie Chicks @ Nokia Theatre (Sold Out)

Bishop Allen @ The Echo ($10)

The Wildhearts @ Key Club

Hello Menno @ Safari Sam’s

Happy Chichester @ Hotel Café ($5)

Thursday Night Live Music Options 10/18/07

The Parson Red Heads Play Spaceland Tonight

Thursday 10/18/07:

TiVo Alert: Band of Horses on Letterman; Spoon on Conan
Tonight's Pick:

The Parson Red Heads / Le Switch / Acute / The Weather Underground @ Spaceland ($8 / email Le Switch and get on the $5 list) – The Parson Red Heads are a good local band carrying on the tradition of the Byrds via the Beachwood Sparks but with way, way more people on stage. Their shows are a party on stage. Their heading out for a West Coast tour later this week and will be doing the Monday night residency at Spaceland in January. Le Switch’s music has slowly seeped into my consciousness throughout the year. They’ve been recording for the Aquarium Drunkard’s label and I’m excited to hear their new stuff. I asked my friend Donny to write a review of Acute’s show at the Troubadour a while back. Read it HERE. This is the EP release party for the Weather Underground.
Other Options:

Benefit for Kime Buzzelli: Entrance / Lavender Diamond / Winter Flowers @ the Echo ($10 minimum donation) – Some of the good Echo Park hippie hipster bands. I still haven’t seen Entrance yet, but I’m interested.

Two Gallants / Blitzen Trapper @ El Rey ($15) Two Gallants is a lo-fi indie folk band on Saddle Creek. Blitzen Trapper’s a 10 year old Portland band (with a pretty serious identity crisis) that recently signed to Sub Pop. I saw them at Spaceland recently and for every song they played that I liked, they followed it up with five that I thought were terrible.

Say Hi To Your Mom / The Velvet Teen @ Troubadour ($13) – Twee.

Eagles / Dixie Chicks @ Nokia Theatre (Sold Out) – The new Nokia Theatre was all lit up last night. Looks pretty fancy.

Electric Six @ Key Club ($15)

The Ringers @ Viper Room ($12) – They continue their Thursday night residency before heading to CMJ this weekend.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Neil Young's "Pocahontas"

This is my weekly reminder to listen to Sinking with Sylvia (and Sometimes Todd) on Little Radio tomorrow from 11:00AM – 1:00PM. Unfortunately Paul from the Minor Canon got sick, so it will just be Sylvia and Todd tomorrow.

I’m still playing catchup, but my weekly pick on the September 13th show was Neil Young’s “Pocahontas” from the Chrome Dreams bootleg. I picked this track, because Neil had just announced his LA shows at the Nokia Theatre on 10/30 (he’s since added a second show on 11/2). Even though the ticket prices are ridiculous, I went ahead and bought the best seats available ($270/each). The tour is in support of his new album, Chrome Dreams 2 which comes out next Tuesday.

Chrome Dreams was recorded in 1977 and consists of a lot of demos and different versions of songs, most of which were later released on American Stars ‘N Bars or Rust Never Sleeps. This version of “Pocahontas” is apparently the same version as the one on Rust Never Sleeps, minus the overdubs. Pocahontas has inspired a Disney film, a Terrance Malick film and this Neil song before either one of those.

I’ve always enjoyed the lyrics of this song. Neil starts out with the early European settlers killing American Indians, and then gets displaced to modern, crowded city life before finally longing to get back to nature (but while talking about the Astrodome with Marlon Brando). He’s got nature, industrialization, paying for sex with Pocahontas and getting stoned with Marlon Brando on his mind. It’s a bizarre juxtaposition of images and his perspective shifts from being one of the European settlers to being one of the slaughtered Indians to being Neil Young.

There’s a live version on the Unplugged CD as well. His tour kicks off tomorrow and I’m curious to see what he’s playing.

Make friends with Neil Young on Myspace
Buy tickets to see Neil Young in concert
See an OK video of Neil Young performing “Pocahontas” on Youtube

Live Music Options - Wednesday 10/17/07

Wednesday's Options (10/17/07):

Bob Mould (acoustic) @ the Roxy ($12) – I’m a huge Husker Du and Sugar fan and I liked Mould’s first couple of solo records. Tonight’s he previewing his new live DVD and playing a 30 minute solo acoustic set and doing a Q&A session. My old roommate booked Sugar in Lawrence, KS around 1995 or so and I was backstage before the show started. I couldn’t believe how nervous Mould was. Once they got on stage they blasted through song after song without even acknowledging the audience. It was such an onslaught and they sounded so great that stage presence didn’t matter.

Club NME: The Subways / Mobius Band @ Spaceland ($12) – The Subways are an upbeat British group of kids who sound like they really like Nirvana. They’ve played Glastonbury, Lollapalooza and Leeds. Mobius Band is an electro-rock band that leans more towards the introspective and less towards the dance. They've got good drink specials too.

The Black Lips @ the Glasshouse in Pomona ($12)

Carla Bozulich / Pocahaunted @ the Smell ($5)

The Youngs @ the Scene

Low End Theory Club: R.A.W. / Zechs Marquise @ Airliner – Their one year anniversary.

Matt Pond PA / Jesca Hoop @ Troubadour ($15)

Dashboard Confessional @ Orpheum ($27.75) – I remember seeing this dude lead his acoustic singalongs on MTV about seven years ago (following in JEW’s footsteps). He really connected with a lot of those sensitive high school kids.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

CMJ Marathon Kicks Off Today

The CMJ Music Marathon kicks off today in New York City. The last time I attended the festival was1998. Back then it was a lot of fun, and I’m sure it still is. The only real drawback is that it’s spread out across New York, and therefore not nearly as approachable as SXSW. Many of my favorite LA bands have showcases, so please support them. There are tons of day and night parties, so check the individual bands’ Myspace pages for more info on that.

LA Bands Appearing:

Wednesday 10/17/07:

Mika Miko @ Blender Theatre @ 7:00 PM - On the Kill Rock Stars label. Girl group, part of the Smell scene.

No Age @ Bowery Ballroom @ 10:00 PM - Recent Sub Pop signees. Tons of potential. Part of the Smell scene.

Division Day @ Canal Room @ 10:45 PM - On the Eenie Meenie label. Keyboard driven indie rock.

Foreign Born @ the Delancey @ 11:00 PM - On the Dim Mak label. Anthemic indie rock.

The Deadly Syndrome @ the Delancey @ Midnight - On the Dim Mak label. Eccentric indie rock. Tons of energy live.

Blake (from Moving Units) @ the Delancey @ 1:00AM - On the Dim Mak label.

The Nightwatchman / Serj Tankian @ Fillmore New York – Irving Plaza @ 9:00 PM - Rage guitarist and System of a Down lead singer.

The Valley Arena @ Lion’s Den @ 8:00 PM - New indie rock.

The Binges @ Lit Lounge @ 8:00 PM

The Section Quartet @ Lit Lounge @ 10:00 PM - String versions of your favorite KCRW type music.

Jeremy Jay @ Luna Lounge @ 9:30 PM

Pigeon John @ Luna Lounge @ Midnight - Hip-hop.

The Airborne Toxic Event @ Mercury Lounge @ 9:00 PM - High energy, catchy, British-inspired guitar rock.

The Little Ones @ Mercury Lounge @ 11:00 PM - On the Astralwerks label. Super catchy indie pop.

Monsters Are Waiting @ Piano’s @ 9:00 PM

Thursday 10/18/07:

Princeton @ the Delancey @ 8:00 PM

The Chapin Sisters @ Piano’s @ Midnight

Let’s Go Sailing @ Union Hall @ 9:00 PM - Frequent appearances on Grey's Anatomy. Heartfelt, female fronted piano driven music.

Division Day @ Union Hall @ 11:00 PM - See above.

Friday 10/19/07:

Graham MacRae @ Banjo Jim’s @ 11:00 PM - Singer-songwriter and one of the guys that started the new defunct Sea Level records in Echo Park.

Oliver Future @ Fontanas @ 10:00 PM

Low vs. Diamond @ Fontanas @ 11:00 PM

HEALTH @ Knitting Factory Tap Bar @ 10:15 PM - On the Lovepump United label. Noisey, part of the Smell scene.

Let’s Go Sailing @ Living Room @ Midnight

The Warlocks @ Luna Lounge @ 1:00 AM - Psychedelic rock 'n' roll along the lines of Brian Jonestown Massacre.

The Broken West @ Mercury Lounge @ Midnight - On the Merge label. Meaty indie rock that falls somewhere between old Summer Teeth-era Wilco and Teenage Fanclub.

Z Trip @ Studio B @ 12:30 PM - He's great when he does his DJ gigs.

The Airborne Toxic Event @ Union Hall @ 8:00 PM

Saturday 10/20/07:

The Ringers @ Fontanas @ 11:00 PM

Tiffany Anders @ Luna Lounge @ 7:00 PM

The Ettes @ Magnetic Field @ 10:30 PM

Great Northern @ Pianos @ 10:45 PM - On the Eenie Meenie label. Spacey rock along the lines of Grandaddy and Earlimart.

Princeton @ Union Hall @ 9:00 PM

Live Music Calendar Tuesday 10/16/07

Black Francis Plays Safari Sam's Tonight

Tuesday's Picks (10/16/07):
In-Store Alert: The Bird and the Bee @ Amoeba 7:00PM (Free)

TiVo Alert: PJ Harvey on Leno

Black Francis / Eastern Conference Champions @ Safari Sam’s ($20 / Free to the first 50 people who show up who are over 21) – Night two of two. He’s usually very entertaining and it’s a good room to see him in. Plus if you get there before 9:30 PM there’s a good chance you’ll get in free.

Figurines / Dappled Cities @ Spaceland ($10) – Figures are a Danish indie band that frequently gets compared to Modest Mouse and Built to Spill. Dappled Cities are an Australian indie band that’s gotten favorable reviews (including a 7.8/10 on Pitchfork) and comparisons to just about every indie band as well as Split Enz and Todd Rundgren. They’re on local label Dangerbird here in the States.

Patrick Wolf @ El Rey ($19) – Pitchfork approved (his most recent album scored an 8.3/10) flamboyant 24 year old Brit. I’ve only heard the songs on his Myspace page, but they sound pretty good.
Also Appearing:
Matthew Dear’s Big Hand’s / Mobius Band @ the Echo ($12) – Another Pitchfork approved show. They gave Matthew Dear’s latest album a 7.9/10. He was heavily influenced by Detroit house, but his latest is more of a pop album.

Jimmy Eat World @ Wiltern (Sold Out) – JEW’s still playing that uplifting emo-pop music for kids. I saw them at the Roxy about eight years ago.

Dashboard Confessional @ Orpheum ($27.75) – I remember seeing this dude lead his acoustic singalongs on MTV about seven years ago (following in JEW’s footsteps). He really connected with a lot of those sensitive high school kids.

Pat McGee Band / The Kin @ Troubadour ($15) – Download The Kin’s “Together

USSA / Oxbow @ Knitting Factory ($14)

Adult Swim Hip Hop Tour: Ghostface Killah / Witchdoctor @ UCLA Ackerman Ballroom (Free for UCLA Students) – You gotta have a UCLA ID for this one.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Monday Night Live Music Calendar 10/15/07

Boris Plays the Echoplex Tonight

Monday Night's Picks 10/15/07:

Boris / Damon & Naomi @ Echoplex ($17) – Boris is a Japanese metal band named after a Melvins’ song. They’ve been around since the mid 1990s, but finally broke through to more mainstream US indie audiences with last year’s Pink. That album shows their impressive musical chops by expanding their sound to incorporate shoegaze, blues-metal and just about every other kind of heavy music you can imagine.
Black Francis / Eastern Conference Champions @ Safari Sam’s ($20) – Charles Thompson released his first solo album as Black Francis presumably to take advantage of the renewed interest in the Pixies. I’ve seen him with the Pixies and I’ve seen him as Frank Black. He’s usually pretty good.
PJ Harvey @ Orpheum (Sold Out) – If you’re not doing anything at 4:00PM on the 18th, you can see her perform a free Yahoo set in West LA. Email HERE. The new album was just too dark for me, but if you’re a fan you gotta see her.
Castledoor / Hearts of Palm UK / Princeton / Austin James Band @ the Echo (Free) – Castledoor continues their Monday night residency. They’re one of Bronson’s favorite new LA bands. Princeton’s a local band that’s getting some nice buzz. They’re heading off to CMJ later this week.
Oliver Future / 5 O’Clock Somewhere @ Spaceland (Free) – 5 O’Clock Somwhere is a female fronted band that plays classic country. They’re backed up by a couple of the guys from Wiskey Biscuit and Cuz‘n Roy and I hear they’re a lot of fun to see. Oliver Future continues their Monday night residency.
Also Appearing:

Rilo Kiley / Grand Ole Party / The Bird and the Bee @ Santa Monica Civic Auditorium ($25) – Not too fond of that new Rilo Kiley album, but maybe you are.

Sarah Silverman @ Largo (Reservations booked)

Aushua @ Silverlake Lounge (Free)

The Mae Shi / Xu Xu Fang @ Viper Room ($10 / Free with RSVP) – Another solid lineup for the Viper Room.

Limbeck @ Hotel Café – They’re doing a Monday night residency at the Hotel Café. Their latest album is pretty good.

Delta Spirit / The Willowz @ Troubadour ($10)

Kind Hearts & Coronets @ Bordello ($7)

Friday, October 12, 2007

Weekend Music Options 10/13-07 - 10/14/07

Arthur & Yu Play Spaceland on Saturday

Saturday's Options (10/13/07):

Great Lake Swimmers / Arthur & Yu @ Spaceland ($10) – This is the Aquarium Drunkard’s pick and he’s got pretty damn good taste in music. It’s pretty mellow, introspective acoustic based music. Arthur & Yu’s a newish duo on Sub Pop affiliated label, Hardly Art that frequently gets compared to Lee Hazelwood and Nancy Sinatra. I’ve been told I’d really like them.
Download Great Lake Swimmers’ “Your Rocky Spine” and “I Am Part of a Large Family
Download Arthur & Yu’s “There Are Too Many Birds” and “Come to View (Song for Neil Young

Morrissey / Kristeen Young @ Palladium ($50) – This is the last night of eight nights. After this the Palladium will be closed down for extensive renovations.

Devendra Banhart / Hecuba @ Orpheum Theatre ($28) – The LA Weekly has a new interview with DB where he talks about his balls being saggy and being in possession of Jim Morrison’s couch.

Fujiya and Miyagi @ Echoplex ($15) – For the indie dance crowd. A lot of people were impressed with their show at Spaceland earlier this year.

Brother Reade @ the Echo ($7) Local underground hip-hop.

Genesis @ Hollywood Bowl ($57-$352) – They were pretty decent with Peter Gabriel.

Dark Star Orchestra @ El Rey ($28) - Deadheads

Eastside Evolution: The Health Club / Killsonic / Panic Movement @ Self Help Graphics [3802 East Cesar Chavez in East LA]

Q-Tip @ Key Club ($25) – A Tribe Called Quest put out a couple of my favorite hip-hop albums ever.

The Tyde / Bolero @ The Prospector ($7) – Good excuse to drive down to Long Beach. Hit up Fingerprints while you’re down there. It’s a very good record store.

Ana Egge @ Bordello ($10)

8-Bit @ Mr. T’s Bowl

Sic Alps @ the Scene ($7)

Polysics @ Troubadour ($14)

Sunday's Options (10/14/07):

Dengue Fever / Sara Lov / Culver City Dub Collective @ Pasadena Art Weekend (Free) – 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM. I like Dengue Fever.

Magik Markers @ Spaceland ($8) – Noisy, Thurston Moore approved rock.

Michael Showalter @ Ivar Theatre

Ana Egge @ Bordello ($8)

Happy Chichester @ Hotel Café ($5)

Grand Ole Echo: Dead Rock West / David Serby @ the Echo (Free) – Early show at 5:00 PM

Part Time Punks: Ariel Pink @ the Echo ($5)

Friday Night Live Music Options 10/12/07

Friday's Picks (10/12/07):

The Airborne Toxic Event / Low vs. Diamond / Castaneda @ Echoplex ($12) – Catchy, British inspired local band that’s gotten good press in the UK, lots of local airplay and seem to be on the brink of national exposure.

Aesop Rock / Black Moth Super Rainbow / Blockhead @ the Fonda ($18) – A couple of bands that intrigue me, but I haven’t heard the whole records.
Download BMSR’s “Forever Heavy” and “Sun Lips” and “The Afternoon Turns Pink
Download Aesop Rock’s “None Shall Pass” and “Citronella

Akron/Family / The Dodos @ Troubadour ($14) – Folky band on Michael Gira’s label.
Download “Ed Is a Portal” and “Phenomena

The Hub Caps @ Mr. T’s Bowl – This is Josh Schwartz’s (from Bolero) cover band. Seeing them play the Stones and Neil Young songs is a very good time.

Morrissey / Kristeen Young @ Palladium ($55) – I saw him last night and it was really good. Only Morrissey can get away with triumphantly tearing off his shirt during the performance and tossing it into the crowd.

Also Appearing:
Scout Niblett @ Pehrspace

Genesis @ Hollywood Bowl ($57-$352)

Dark Star Orchestra @ El Rey ($28) - Deadheads

Quazar & the Bamboozled @ Hotel Café

The Spores @ the Scene

Good Magazine Party: DJs Frosty and Jimmy Tamborello, Daedelus, Devlin & Darko (Spank Rock) @ Natural History Museum (RSVP $20 gets you a subscription to the magazine)

KRK Ryden / The Fuxedos / Nu-Tra @ Safari Sam’s ($10) – Mark Ryden’s brother.

Marvelous Toy @ El Cid ($7)

Numbers / Anavan @ the Smell

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The Kinks: "Mister Songbird"

This is my weekly reminder to tune into Sinking with Sylvia (and Sometimes Todd) on Little Radio tomorrow (Thursday) from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM PST. Tomorrow their guest will be Jim Evens, the lead singer of local shoegazers, Helen Stellar. Expect questions about Cameron Crowe and what Jim did on his summer vacation. Since Jim works at Amoeba, hopefully he’ll share some choice musical selections.

Still playing catch up, my weekly pick for the show on September 6th was “Mister Songbird” by the Kinks. If you press me, I’ll probably tell you that my favorite band of all time is the Kinks. The biggest reason is Ray Davies songwriting. I can’t say that I love everything the Kinks ever did, but I do love the early singles and the albums from 1965-1971. That period was so fertile for the Kinks that The Kinks Kronikles and The Great Lost Kinks Album had to be released to pick up all the tracks that weren’t deemed worthy of being on the studio albums. “Mister Songbird” comes from the latter. The Great Lost Kinks Album was quickly in and out of print in 1973. It used to be pretty damn hard to track down. Most of the tracks from it have since been re-released on the expanded Castle editions of the studio albums, so it’s not quite the find it used to be.

When I first got my hands on it (I ripped a friends bootleg CD), I was blown away. Already being a huge fan, I couldn’t believe there were so many great Kinks tracks that I’d never heard. “Mister Songbird” doesn’t exhibit Davies acerbic wit (although anything’s arguable) or his nostalgia. It might not even appear on a list of my top 50 Kinks songs. But it’s a light-hearted, catchy as hell romp that gets my toe tapping and “helps keep my troubles away.” The whole album’s pretty great, but other standouts on the Great Lost Kinks Album are “Where Did My Spring Go,” “When I Turn Out the Living Room Light” and “There Is No Life Without Love.” I’ve since replaced my burned CD with a original vinyl pressing (picked up at Atomic in Burbank for $15) and an original copy of the 1998 Goldtone CD-R bootleg which adds a bunch of Dave Davies’ solo material (and which I found at some crappy used store in the San Fernando Valley for $9). Both of those will catch you a pretty decent penny on the internet, so if you see them for a decent price you should go ahead and pick them up.

I haven’t decided what I’m going to pick for tomorrow. Tune in and hear Todd make fun of it.

Make friends with Ray Davies on Myspace
Make friend with Dave Davies on Myspace
Watch the Kinks perform “Waterloo Sunset” (probably my favorite song) on Youtube

Thursday Night Live Music Preview 10/11/07

Beirut Plays the Avalon Wednesday and Thursday (and here demonstrates what his records make me do)
The new Radiohead album is now available for download from the band. If it wasn't for their fans being so militant about their brilliance, I'd probably be more excited about it. As it is, I'm waiting until I get home to download it (and really hoping that I enjoy it more than the last two).
Thursday's Picks 10/11/07:

Morrissey / Kristeen Young @ Palladium ($50 / $25 with discount password) – The $25 tix are impossible to pass up. I heard his show last night was fantastic. Type PALLADIUM in for the cheapies.

Beirut / Colleen @ Avalon ($22) – Buy a ticket and you can get a one year subscription to Entertainment Weekly. For the Eastern European indie gypsy folk fans.

Nina Nastasia with Jim White / The Sagittarians @ Knitting Factory Front Stage ($12) – The new Nina Nastisian/Jim White album has gotten great reviews (including an 8.6 from Pitchfork). The bits I’ve heard sound good, but the front stage at the Knitting Factory’s about the last place on earth I’d want to see those songs performed. The Sagittarians is a new band with Neil Busch (Trail of Dead) and Alan Rosetti (VIET NAM).

Avengers / Pansy Division @ Spaceland ($10) – The Avengers are a first wave (circa 1977) San Francisco punk band who famously opened for the Sex Pistols at their last show (not counting their reunions of course). The original vocalist and guitarist are on this tour. Pansy Division’s a queercore band that I saw open for Green Day at Liberty Hall in Lawrence, KS in 1994. They were quite amusing. I was working security backstage and it was great standing on stage and watching the kids’ expressions as the lead singer thrust his strap-on pink dildo at them.

Rogue Wave / Port O’Brien @ El Rey ($14) – I thought their first album was great, their second album ok and I’ve only heard two tracks on their new one. They just seem to water down their sound more and more with each release.

Also Appearing on Thursday:
Annie Lennox @ Wilshire Theatre (Sold Out)

Ozma / New Year’s Day / Satisfaction @ Knitting Factory Main Stage ($15)

Free Moral Agents / Crystal Antlers @ Charlie O’s ($5)

Dance Right: J-Logic @ La Cita – Since I mention Cinespace Tuesdays sometimes, I figured I should mention this one downtown hipsterfest.

Acute @ Hotel Café – I plan on seeing them next Thursday at Spaceland with Le Switch and Parson Red Heads.
Ana Egge @ Silverlake Lounge ($8)

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Preview of Wednesday Night's Live Calendar 10/10/07

The Henry Clay People Play the Bordello on Wednesday

Wednesday's Pick (10/10/07):
Emmylou Harris @ Cerritos Center for the Arts (Sold Out) – She’s amazing, I wish I would have gotten tickets.
Also Recommended on Wednesday:

In-Store Alert: Band of Horses @ Amoeba (Free) - 7:00PM

Henry Clay People / The Hectors / Divisadero @ Bordello ($8) – I’ve heard great things about Henry Clay People’s Pavement-style indie rock.

Beirut / Colleen @ Avalon ($22) – Buy a ticket and you can get a one year subscription to Entertainment Weekly. For the Eastern European indie folk fans. He’s got an eight-piece band in concert.

Let’s Go Sailing @ Hotel Café – I am a fan.

Jose Gonzalez @ El Rey (Sold Out) – The Swedish singer-songwriter will be back in late November with Cass McCombs opening.
Also Noteworthy:

Low End Theory: The Glitch Mob / Free Moral Agents @ Airliner ($5) – Make sure you pick up a copy of DJ Nobody’s 78-minute Halloween mix CD of dark 60’s and 70’s psych.

Ana Egge / Exitmusic @ Tangier ($8) – If you like Portishead, you’ll want to check out local band, Exitmusic. Ana Egge has drawn praise from Lucinda Williams, Shawn Colvin and Ron Sexsmith.

Lotus @ Knitting Factory ($14)

The Willowz / Wounded Cougar @ Safari Sam’s (Free) – Usually when you see the doucebagz from the Willowz around town they’re kicking in bathroom doors or lighting off fireworks inside clubs.

Kissing Cousins @ Silverlake Lounge ($7)

Club NME: Team Facelift @ Spaceland – According to their Myspace page: “Team Facelift is a New York-bred rap group consisting of three rappers: Machine, Fat Jew, and Fonda (aka Ginger Ale), and one producer, Tommy Mas.” On the other hand, it’s free after midnight and they have $1 Dewars specials.

Other People @ The Scene

Spiritualized Announce LA Dates

Who: Spiritualized doing their Acoustic Mainlines Tour (with strings and backup singers)
Where: Vista Theatre (I've never seen a live show there)
When: November 11th and November 12th, 2007
Why: I'd much rather see them do a fully plugged in show, but this is all you're gonna get for now. I've seen them put on two amazing shows (once opening for Radiohead at Universal and once at La Zona Rosa in Austin) and once they put on an OK show.
Tickets: Not on sale yet, but expect them to go on sale through Ticketweb later this week.

Bjork Date Announced

Who: Bjork / Ratatat
When: December 12, 2007
Where: Nokia Theatre LA Live
How: Tickets go on sale Saturday at 10:00AM
Price: $45-$125
Why: Even though I don't listen to her records that much, she's a great live performer.

Live Music Listings Tuesday - 10/9/07

The Coral Sea Play the Silverlake Lounge Tonight

Instead of enjoying free music last night, I watched Death Proof. What a bore.
Tuesday's Pick 10/9/07:

The Coral Sea / Light FM / Hello Dragon @ Silverlake Lounge ($8)

Other Options:
In-store Alert: Datarock @ Amoeba (Free) – 7:00PM
Video Shoot Alert: Nico Vega Video Shoot @ La Cita - 9:30PM
Morrissey / Kristeen Young @ Palladium ($55) – Legend alert

Bat for Lashes @ Troubadour (Sold Out) – She was nominated for the Mercury Prize and has gotten good reviews in the US as well. Pretty voice. She sold out Spaceland recently.

Justice / Midnight Juggernauts @ the Fonda (Sold Out) – Dance party alert.

Ruins / The Deadstock @ the Smell ($8) – Ruins are a Japanese duo who are contemporaries of the Boredeoms.

Mandy Moore @ Hotel Café (Sold Out) – Late show, doors at 10:00PM. With friends Rachel Yamagata, Ben Lee and Chris Stills

Liz Pappademas / Gemma Hayes @ Hotel Café - Early show ends by 10:00PM

Teddy’s Cheer Club / The Soft Hands @ the Scene ($5)

Monster in the Machine @ the Roxy

Team Facelift @ On the Rox - Team Facelift is playing at Spaceland on Wednesday and The Echo on Thursday

Olin and the Moon @ Spaceland

Captain #1 @ the Echo ($5)

Dorian Wood @ Bordello ($8)

Monday, October 08, 2007

New Release Tuesday 10/9/07

Another big release date. Definitely some stuff I need to check out...

Top New Releases (10/9/07):

Band of Horses: Cease to Begin (Sub Pop) – Expect a major promotional push for this thing. If you go into Starbucks Tuesday, one of the tracks is the song of day (meaning you can get a free iTunes download of it). You can buy it for $7.99 at all the big box retailers and Amazon (or $15.99 at your local indie stores). They’ve already licensed songs to and Ford (I’m sure Friday Night Lights and Chuck won’t be too far behind). The band’s featured on the Myspace splash page. All that’s fine and dandy with me as long as the record still moves me. Is it any good? Well, Pitchfork gave it a 7.7/10. Unfortunately I don’t agree. It starts off solid with “Is There a Ghost” but goes downhill from there. Each song seems to get progressively harder and harder to stomach. By the time I get to the fifth song, "The General Specific," I can't even listen anymore. As he sings “la-dee-da” and "the world is beautiful" I can’t help but think la-dee-fucking-Keane. Anyway, listen to it for yourself. They redeem themselves on "Marry Song," the eighth track. I still like his voice and several of the songs (#1, #2, #8). If my expectations hadn’t been so high (their first album was #7 on my “best of 2006” list last year), I probably wouldn’t be so damn critical. I’m sure this record will be huge, but it won't be anywhere near my top 10 this time.
See them at Amoeba on 10/10 at 7:00PM and at the Avalon on 11/24
Download “Is There a Ghost

Beirut: The Flying Club Cup (Ba Da Bing) – If you’re into Eastern European folk sung by an American kid with a warbly voice, then you’re all over this. I tried really hard to get into Gulag Orkestar and I’ve tried really hard to get into this one, but I'm just never in the mood for this type of thing. That said, I totally respect what’s he’s doing.
At the Avalon on 10/11 and 10/12

Jens Lekman: Night Falls Over Kortadela (Secretly Canadian) - Sweden's so much better than us that a guy like Jens Lekman can hit the top of the charts there.
At the Troubadour on 11/10
Download "The Opposite of Hallelujah" and "Friday Night at the Drive-In Bingo"

Cass McCombs
: Dropping the Writ (Domino) - Most of this album was written while he lived here. That almost qualifies it as local. I like his earlier stuff, so I plan on picking this one up.
Download "That's That" and "Deseret"
At the Fonda on 11/27

Robert Pollard
: Coast to Coast Carpet of Love (Merge) - "His poppier 'Beatles' side." Celebrating his 50th birthday by releasing two albums.
Download "Current Desperation (Angels Speak of Nothing)"

Robert Pollard: Standard Gargoyle Decisions (Merge) - "His punkier 'Stones' side"
Download "Pill Gone Girl"

Radiohead: In Rainbows (Self-Released Download Only) – Comes out on 10/10. You pay whatever you want and download it Wednesday.

Sunset Rubdown: Random Spirit Lover (Jagjaguwar) - The third album from the Spencer Krug band. I know all the indie kids love it, but I can't couldn't get into the last one.
At El Rey on 10/19
Download "Winged/Wicked Things" and "Up On Your Leopard, Upon the End of Your Feral Days"

Other Releases:

Celebration: Modern Tribe (4AD) - At the Echo on 11/9

Josie Cotton: Invasion of the B-Girls (Scruffy) – Favorites from B-Movies of the 60s and 70s with an introduction by John Waters.

Dead Kennedys
: Milking the Sacred Cow (Manifesto) - Probably my favorite band in junior high. This is only 10 songs (+2 unreleased live tracks). I suppose it's a decent introduction.

The Deadstring Brothers
: Silver Mountain (Bloodshot)

Electric Six: I Shall Exterminate Everything Around Me That Restricts Me From Being Master (Metropolis)
At the Key Club on 10/18

Enon: Grass Geysers…Carbon Clouds (Touch and Go)
At the Echo on 11/3

Fatboy Slim: Late Night Tales (Thrive) – Fatboy Slim turns you onto Jonathan Richman and the Velvet Underground

The Fiery Furnaces
: Widow City (Thrill Jockey) - I don't get these guys at all and I've seen them live and I've heard the records.
At the Troubadour on 10/22

His Name Is Alive: Firefly Dragonfly (Acuarela) - Veteran dream poppers.

[LOCAL] Moving Units: Hexes for Exes (Metropolis) - Blake Miller takes a break from DJ'ing with Aoki.

Scout Niblett: This Fool Can Die Now (Beggars/Too Pure) - Will Oldham makes a notable appearance on "Kiss."
At Pehrspace on 10/12

The Octopus Project:
Hello, Avalanche (Peek-a-Boo) – Austin indie-poppers.
At the Roxy on 11/10
Download “I Saw the Bright Shinies

Old Time Relijun
: Catharsis in Crisis (K Records)
Download "Indestructible Life"

Polysics: Polysics or Die – Vista (Myspace Records) - Japanese synth-poppers.
At the Troubadour on 10/13

: Prints (Temporary Residence) - The label stuff compares them to Eno and Brian Wilson. This free download's good enough to make me want to hear more.
Download "Too Much Water"

Ravens and Chimes
: Reichenbach Falls (Better Looking Records) –
Listen to “January” and “General Lafayette! You Are Not Alone

[Local] She Wants Revenge: This Is Forever (Geffen) – So contrived, but if you people want to buy it, go right ahead.
At the Fonda on 11/9 & 11/10

The Silver Seas: High Society (Cheap Lullaby)

Sleeping People
: Growing (Temporary Residence) - For the math rock fans.
At the Knitting Factory on 12/2

Spank Rock and Benny Blanco: Bangers and Cash (Downtown) - Satire rap.

Tulsa: I Was Submerged (Park the Van) - David Fricke compared his voice to Jim James and said the music sounds like Parsons-era Byrds which makes me want to hear it.
At the Silverlake Lounge on 11/15

White Shoes and the Couples Company
: White Shoes & the Couples Company (Minty Fresh) - From Jakarta

Robert Wyatt
: Comicopera (Domino) - The founder of Soft Machine


Moby Grape: Moby Grape (Sundazed) - This one's kind of the quintessential San Francisco psychedelic-era album. If you don't already have it, you probably should get it.

Moby Grape: Wow (Sundazed)

Moby Grape: Grape Jam (Sundazed)