Monday, June 30, 2008

Live Music Options 6/30/08 - 7/6/08

Shepard Fairey's Poster for the Afternoons' Residency

With the holiday, not too many touring bands in town this week. Last weekend I saw Fleet Foxes, Radar Bros. and Cheap Trick doing Sgt. Pepper's. More about all that later.

Monday 6/30/08
[Recommended] Afternoons / The Happy Hollows / The Movies / The Boxing Lesson @ Spaceland (Free) – Get there early (and stay late). Big lineup.
[Recommended] Patton Oswalt / Michael Penn @ Largo ($25) – One of my favorite working comedians.
[Recommended] Le Switch @ Viper Room – You can see if the new owners have changed anything.
Rumspringa / 1921a / Slang Chickens @ the Echo (Free) – Download Rumspringa’s “Goldmine
Spider Problem @ Silverlake Lounge (Free)
Matt & Kim / The Death Set @ King King (Free) – Free Colt 45 from 9 – 11 PM.
Lukas Haas @ Hotel Café
Kyle Mabson and Josh Taylor @ Pehrpsace
Teddy’s Cheer Club / The Coral Sea / The French Semester @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Shwayze @ the Roxy (Free) – Download “Buzzin
The Gift Machine @ Echo Curio (Free)

Tuesday 7/1/08
[Recommended] Le Switch / Henry Clay People @ the Prospector in Long Beach
[Recommended] The Mae Shi / Death to Anders / Die Rockers Die / Light FM @ Spaceland ($8)
We Are Scientists / Morning Benders / Blood Arm @ El Rey ($18)
James Hunter @ Troubadour ($15)
Gravy Train @ the Echo ($12) – Two shows – an early one at 7:00 PM and a late one at 10:00 PM.
The Make Mentions / Kris Special / Marvelous Toy @ Silverlake Lounge ($5)

Wednesday 7/2/08
Fireworks Extravaganza @ Hollywood Bowl ($10 - $114) – Celebrating the Dodgers with guest Randy Newman
Iglu & Hartly / Casxio / Carlotta / Funeral Party @ Troubadour ($5)
Modey Lemon / The Muslims @ The Echo ($10)
Emery Byrd / Ride on Rides / Monstro Flora @ Silverlake Lounge ($8)
Learning Music / Mia Sable / Patria Jacobs / Suki Ewers @ Tangier ($10)
Low End Theory Club: Nosaj Thing @ Airliner

Thursday 7/3/08
[Recommended] The Flying Tourbillon Orchestra / The Stevenson Ranch Davidians / Summer Darling / Fol Chen @ The Echo (Free) – Presented by Web In Front, Radio Free Silver Lake and LA Underground
Constantines / Ladyhawk / The Jet Age @ Troubadour ($14)
Whispertown 2000 / My Imaginary Friends / Man and the Motorcar @ Silverlake Lounge ($8)
Fireworks Extravaganza @ Hollywood Bowl ($10 - $114) – Celebrating the Dodgers with guest Randy Newman
Pink Enemy / Royal Rumble / All Neon Like @ Spaceland
Mike Stinson / I See Hawks in LA / Old Californio / Dave Gleason @ 4th Annual Pre-Independence Day Bash
The Pity Party @ Echo Curio

Friday 7/4/08
[Recommended] Spindrift / Flash Express @ the Echo ($10)
[Recommended] Mike Stinson @ Cinema Bar in Culver City (Free)
Seasons / The Voyeurs / The Grizzly Owls / Terrapin @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Fireworks Extravaganza @ Hollywood Bowl ($10 - $114) – Celebrating the Dodgers with guest Randy Newman

Saturday 7/5/08
Bugs Bunny on Broadway @ Hollywood Bowl ($10 - $114)
[Recommended] Old Californio / Dave Gleason @ Cinema Bar (Free)
Hootenanny 08: Mike Ness and many others @ Oak Canyon Ranch in Irvine ($40)
The New Centuries / Master Slash Slave @ Spaceland
Reverand Horton Heat / Nashville Pussy / Supersuckers @ House of Blues ($25)

Sunday 7/6/08
[Recommended] Little Radio Summer Camp @ Little Radio Warehouse in Downtown LA [1218 Long Beach Ave]
[Recommended] Grande Ole Echo: Mike Stinson @ the Echo (Free) – Early show at 5:00 PM.
[Recommended] Correatown / One Trick Pony / Red Maids @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Banyan @ Safari Sam’s ($15)
Legendary Shack Shakers @ Spaceland ($10)
Oh Halo / Eagle Winged Palace / Tiny Graves / He’s My Brother, She’s My Sister @ Tangier ($8)

Friday, June 27, 2008

Local Band Updates

I haven’t done a local scene update in quite a while, but here’s an attempt:

Pitchfork recently offered a download of a new song “Perfect Games” (via Pitchfork), from the Broken West. Look for the new album, Now or Heaven, in stores on September 9th.

The Cold War Kids released a teaser video hyping their new album on Youtube. They’ve got a massive tour lined up, supporting Beck at some shows, and featuring a headlining appearance at Sunset Junction.

Speaking of Sunset Junction, all but one artist is now posted. In addition to all the great local bands, I’m looking forward to the Beachwood Sparks reunion show, Menomena and Broken Social Scene.

Beck’s new Danger Mouse produced record, Modern Guilt, comes out July 8th. You can stream three of the tracks at Myspace.

Foreign Born have bid Sayonara to Steve Aoki’s label and signed with one of my favorite labels, Secretly Canadian. Look for their SC debut in February of next year. In the meantime, watch some acoustic performances on Live Daily.

Speaking of Secretly Canadian releases, Highland Park’s Bodies of Water will release, A Certain Feeling on July 22nd. It’s the follow-up to their critically acclaimed debut record. Download the first single, “Under the Pines.” The guitar has a little bit of a Dengue Fever vibe to it.

And speaking of Bodies of Water, Secretly Canadian is releasing a series of vinyl only 12” releases from their ABBA-inspired side project, Music Go Music. The first, featuring “Light of Love” is already in stores.

Back to Dengue Fever for a second. They just signed (outside the US) to Peter Gabriel’s label, Real World. They’re still over in Europe playing festivals in the Czech Republic, Glastonbury and Roskilde. They’ll be back in the US in July then back and forth with Europe through the Fall.

Bronson’s got the scoop on the new record from The 88. Look for their new album, Not Only…But Also, on August 26th.

According to a Myspace blog, The Henry Clay People are becoming label mates with kickball buddies Le Switch. Expect a new record this Fall on Autumn Tone Records (the Aquarium Drunkard’s label).

I might have mentioned it before, but Earlimart’s got a new record, Hymn and Her, coming out July 1st. Download the first track, “Song For.”

Earlimart’s new label mates, Airborne Toxic Event, are releasing a series of acoustic videos to promote their new record. They’re all filmed around different locations in LA. Watch them on Youtube. Look for the record in stores on August 5th.

I’m sure I’m forgetting a lot, but that’s it for now…..

New Music Releases: 6/24/08

This is the last week of releases for the first half of 2008. The most buzzed about release of the week, besides Sigur Ros, is the Hercules and Love Affair record. But you know I'm not really into dance music.

Look for my best of the first half of the year sometime next week....

Released on 6/24/08:

Records I’ve Heard:

Electric President: Sleep Well (Morr Music) – Mellow but appealing indie electro-pop. I misplaced the review copy of the CD that was sent to me, but I remember thinking it was pretty good. Download “Monsters

Amos Lee: Last Days at the Lodge (Blue Note) – Don Was produced it and Spooner Oldham and Greg Leisz appear. The record’s kind of all over the map. “Ease Back’s” probably the highlight. At the Fonda on 9/8/08. Download “Ease Back

Sigur Ros: Med Sud I Eyrum Vid Spilum Endalaust (XL Recordings) – I always like Sigur Ros’s records (and they’re even better experienced live). This is another intensely emotional record that transcends language. Sort of like opera for indie rockers. Recommended! At the Greek Theatre on 10/2/08.

Local Interest:

The Watson Twins: Fire Songs (Vanguard) – The Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins record is by far my favorite thing Jenny Lewis has done. I liked the Watson Twins first EP, but haven’t heard this one yet. It was recorded by Russ Pollard and J. Soda from Everest. See them at the Echo on 7/29/08.

Other Noteworthy New Releases:

The Anniversary b-sides
Be Your Own Pet EP
Camper Van Beethoven later period greatest hits
Ry Cooder
Alejandro Escovedo – At the Troubadour on 7/31/08
The Feelies – Only Life reissue
Hercules and Love Affair – At the Echo on 7/23/08
Jay Reatard singles remastered – At the Echo on 7/30/08
Seun Kuti & Egypt 80
Love as Laughter
Liz Phair - Exile in Guyville reissue
Motley Crue
Podington Bear box set
Reckless Kelly
Marc Ribot’s Ceramic Dog
RZA as Bobby Digital
Sam Sparro – At the Troubadour on 8/9/08
The Saturday Knights
Three 6 Mafia
The Wombats

Two Options on Sunday - Little Radio & Kickchella

Two great options for this Sunday. Little Radio moved Summer Camp back to Sunday. This week's performers will be the Radar Bros., Kenan Bell and Jack LaBotz. How 'bout that for an eclectic lineup. Summer Camp runs from Noon to 7:00 PM.
After you get your fill of Colt 45, head on over to Eagle Rock for Kickchilla. There you'll see a lot of great bands (as mentioned on the flyer above) and it's absolutely free. They'll have two stages of music....

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Sinking Radio - Joy Division's "Transmission"

This is my weekly reminder to point your internet browser to Little Radio tomorrow for the Sinking with Sylvia and Todd show. The show airs from Noon to 2:00 PM PST. There’s no musical guest tomorrow, just lots of witty banter and tons of tunes.

Each week on the show the show they play an official You Set the Scene pick and I write about it here. My pick for tomorrow’s show is Joy Division’s “Transmission.” I picked Joy Division this week, because in the past week I watched two films about Joy Division: Control and Joy Division. Control is essentially a biopic that makes Ian Curtis look like a huge asshole (which is pretty understandable when you consider the source material – Touching from a Distance – a book by his wife). The film basically strings together about 10 classic Joy Division stories with clunky dialogue. It’s all a bit heavy handed. I will say that first time director (and photographer) Anton Corbijn made it in beautiful black & white. And the lead actor, Sam Riley, does a good job.

Far more interesting was the documentary, Joy Division. Although I do have some complaints. First off, too much information on Manchester – we get it, post-industrial, no prospects for future. Second, Curtis’ wife Deborah is not interviewed. You do see a lot of his mistress, Annik. The anecdotes from Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook and Stephen Morris are all strong. You hear most of the stories that are portrayed in Control first hand. There’s also some great interview footage with the late Tony Wilson. The two films work well as companion pieces, but if you’re only going to rent one, I’d go with Joy Division. Tons of extras too.

Let me add, that I was never a huge Joy Division fan. They’ve only got about five songs that I really like. While I find the production of their records really interesting, Curtis’ voice is too goth-y and the lyrics are just so dark. I love what the rest of the guys did in New Order though....

Listen to most of my favorite Joy Division songs (but not “Transmission”) on their Myspace page.

Mods and Rockers Film Fest Starts Tonight

The Mods & Rockers Film Festival kicks off tonight and runs through July 9th. Unfortunately I've got a full dance card on Sunday, but Love Story's playing at 7:30 PM. I'm dying to see it...
See all the details HERE.

Recently Announced Live Shows in LA

Sigur Ros' Live Show is Highly Recommended

Recently Announced Concerts:

Moby @ Malibu Performing Arts Center on 7/31/08 (on sale on 7/1/08 to KCRW members – details HERE)
Dengue Fever @ El Rey on 8/2/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)
Paul Weller @ the Wiltern on 9/2/08 – 9/3/08 (on sale Friday at 10:00 AM)
Nine Inch Nails / Deerhunter @ the Forum on 9/6/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)
Ratatat @ the Fonda on 9/9/08 – 9/10/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)
Tony Bennett @ Greek Theatre on 9/12/08 (on sale Sunday at 10:00 AM)
Gladys Knight / Al Green @ Greek Theatre on 9/20/08 (on sale Sunday at 10:00 AM)
Stars @ Avalon on 10/1/08 (on sale Friday at 10:00 AM)
Sigur Ros @ Greek Theatre on 10/2/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM, presale on now but you need the password)
Santana @ Nokia on 10/3/08 (on sale Monday at 10:00 AM)
Kooks @ Hollywood Palladium on 10/28/08 (on sale now w/password = Kooksfalltour)
Carrie Underwood @ Nokia on 11/5/08 (on sale Monday at 10:00 AM)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Live Music Journal 6/16/08 - 6/21/08

As you can probably tell by now, I rarely get inspired to write about most of the live shows I see. There are a couple of reasons for that. For one thing, the internet has killed the element of surprise when it comes to seeing live bands for the first time. There are a lot of different reasons to deem a live band “good,” and some of the reasons can be a bit gimmicky. The first time you saw Trail of Dead destroy their instruments, it was exciting. By the third time, not so much.

By the time your favorite new band comes to town these days, there’s a good chance you’ve seen clips of them on Youtube, you’ve read multiple blog postings about them and you’ve already downloaded bootlegged MP3s. Takes the fun out of it, doesn’t it? Some other reasons I tend to avoid writing about live shows: I hate to pan a new local band before they’ve had a chance to find themselves; most bands just aren’t all that interesting; and most of the time, you just had to be there. I do get a perverse pleasure out of writing about it when somebody really disappoints me, but that’s another story altogether. And I tend to hate taking photos at shows. Nothing takes me out of it more than watching it through a camera.

All that said, last week was a particularly active week for me with live bands….

Monday: I hadn’t seen Everest since the release (and my subsequent absorption) of their new record, so Spaceland was the place. As usual, they didn’t disappoint. After a few weeks out on the road they were tighter than ever. Some of the arrangements were a little different than the album, they added a Byrds’ cover, and did some pretty heavy jamming at the end. They’re in Europe with My Morning Jacket right now, and I hear they might have a pretty cool tour coming up in the Fall. You can track their whereabouts on their new website HERE. I only caught a little bit of Afternoons, but plan to make it back next week to see more.

Tuesday: Again with Spaceland. I’ve seen Henry Clay People more than any other band in the past year (with the possible exception of Le Switch). Unfortunately I was with some friends watching the Celtics celebrate their victory and missed most of Tuesday’s set. I got there just in time to see Joey jump off the stage and hand his guitar off during their version of Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World.” The crowd was a bit stiff and seemed a little confused, but I’m sure they made some new fans. Next up was the Deadly Syndrome, who I hadn’t seen since a few songs at SXSW. It was another really strong set. They’re another really fun band to see live. By the end of their set it was hot as hell and electricity was in the air for Airborne Toxic Event. Spaceland was packed with people who’ve heard them on KROQ and Indie 103. The next day they announced that their next local show will be a headlining gig at El Rey. They’ve got an appearance scheduled on Conan O’Brien too. Impressive.

Thursday: It was time to finally see one of the newer venues in town, so I Google’d Crash Mansion for the address. We were on the list for the show, but were informed that unless we were buying tickets, we had to wait in a long line to get in. Something seemed backwards about that. You make the customers who planned ahead wait? We walked up a very steep set of stairs and were greeted by Jermaine Stewart’s “We Don’t Have to Take Our Clothes Off to Have a Good Time.” An odd DJ selection given that we had tickets to see the Old 97’s. We discovered that there are two rooms at the Crash Mansion. One lounge (home to the bad 80’s music) and the venue. The venue was a large rectangle with a very wide stage. Hayes Carll was on stage and sound in the room wasn’t bad. I’d heard good things about him at Stagecoach, but couldn’t really get into it. It was the kind of thing that probably sounds a lot better at a bar in Texas. The drawl seemed exaggerated and most of the music fell somewhere between early Sheryl Crow and Bonnie Raitt. I know he’s worked with Guy Clark, so I’m wondering if I’d like his earlier stuff better. We ordered some $6 beers (reasonable I suppose) from one of the four bars in the venue (not counting the bar in the lounge) and watched guys pass around plates of wings. They don’t have any beer on tap. Next up was Old 97’s. They started off with some newer songs and it took a while for the sound guy to get it right. Eventually it sounded good. The highlight of night for me was when they brought out Ricky Jackson from Carll’s band (and Brothers and Sisters) to play pedal steel. It seemed to bring a new energy to the show. Jackson played on about six songs before heading back off stage.

Saturday Day: I needed to see Explorers Club and opted for the daytime show at Little Radio’s Summer Camp. The band took the stage in shorts and t-shirts and I was instantly engaged. Lots of great harmonies and they seemed to be having so much fun up there. Obviously they adore the Beach Boys, and invited Darren from the Tyde onstage to sing lead on a cover. They followed that up with a smoking version of “Johnny B. Goode.” Bonus points for the member who did the backflip off the stage. Next up was the Deadly Syndrome. Two shows in a week and they still impressed. Last was No Age. After a few songs, it was nap time at home.

Saturday Night: My third trip to Spaceland in a week. I needed to see The Broken West to hear songs off their forthcoming record, Now or Heaven, due September 9th on Merge. I caught a little bit of opener Dead Confederate who, by the way, sounded a lot better than they do on their Myspace page. The Broken West was loud. The sound man had it turned way up. And they sounded great. Really looking forward to that new record…..

It was a great week, but I’m totally burnt out on live shows, although it hopefully won't stop me from hitting the Bowl on Saturday and All Star Lanes and Spaceland on Sunday.

New Music Releases: 6/17/08

Here's some quality, week old information you can use. These are the new music releases from Tuesday, June 17th. Of course the big release was the new Coldplay (over 700k sold in the first week). A lot of you probably picked up the new Wolf Parade too....

Records Released on 6/17/08:

Records I’ve Heard:

Noa Babayof: From a Window to a Wall (Language of Stone) – She’s a folky, Israeli singer-songwriter inspired by Joni Mitchell and Vashti Bunyan. Greg Weeks of the Espers recorded this album. Download “Indian Queen

Children of the Sixth Root Race: Songs from the Source (Drag City) – A lost 1973 rehearsal from the Source family. It doesn’t get more hippie than this. The sound quality is decent for a rehearsal from the early 1970s. There’s a bit of an R’n’B vibe with some organs and a female choir.
Download “Godmen

King Khan & the Shrines: The Supreme Genius of King Khan & the Shrines (Vice) - An Indian from Canada leading a multinational group playing Nuggets meets Stax tunes with punk attitude. This is a compilation of previously released tracks, but it’s the first time they’re getting wide distribution in the US. It’s on Vice Records and includes liner notes written by one of the guys from the Black Lips. It’s a fun record (probably even better live) and a sound that never goes out of style. See them at the Echo on 7/10/08. Download “Torture

Dennis Wilson: Pacific Ocean Blue (Sony Legacy) – Very well put together reissue of Wilson’s lost classic. I’ve written about this record a couple of times before. There’s so much sadness in some of these songs, it can be incredibly tough to listen to. The reissued package includes the previously unreleased Bambu sessions. Highly recommended for Beach Boys junkies.

On the shopping list:

Silver Jews: Lookout Mountain, Lookout Sea (Drag City) – That voice isn’t for everybody, but he writes great lyrics. Download “Strange Victory, Strange Defeat” See them live at the Echoplex on 9/26/08.

Other Noteworthy New Releases:
Adem covers album
Eef Barzelay
Bowerbirds remastered
Chromeo deluxe edition [Fonda 7/30/08]
Coldplay [Forum 7/14/08 – 7/15/08]
Computer vs. Banjo (mp3)
Jason Falkner – Beatles covers
Head Like a Kite
IAMX [El Rey 9/15/08]
The Impossible Shapes (mp3)
Judas Priest
Liquid Liquid reissue
Jon Mueller & Jason Kahn
My Brightest Diamond
The Notwist
Ponytail (mp3)
Reggie and the Full Effect [Avalon 8/26/08]
Melissa St. Pierre
Tilly and the Wall [Echoplex 7/10] (mp3 and mp3)
Valient Thorr [Troubadour 8/15/08]
The War on Drugs
Wolf Parade (mp3 and mp3) [The Fonda on 7/18/08 – 7/19/08]

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Ticket Giveaway: Fleet Foxes @ Spaceland

Regular readers have seen me mention Fleet Foxes a bunch of times. I praised their fantastic EP, then raved about their performance at SXSW and followed it up with a glowing review of their debut LP. This week, the band will be making two local appearances. On Saturday night you can see them at the Echo and on Sunday night they'll be appearing at Spaceland. Advance tickets for both shows are sold out, but you can usually get in (especially at Spaceland) if you show up at a reasonable time (around 9-ish).
I have two pairs of tickets to give away for their appearance at Spaceland on Sunday night. To win these tickets email me [dukeufo at hotmail] and tell me what your favorite record is so far this year. The contest closes Thursday night at 6:00 PM. Please put Fleet Foxes in the subject line.
Read Mojo's 5/5 Star review of the record HERE

Monday, June 23, 2008

Live Music Options: 6/23/08 - 6/29/08

I saw a lot of bands last week, so I'll try to post about that later. This is another fantastic summer week for live music.....

Monday 6/23/08
[Recommended] Afternoons / The Parson Red Heads / HT Heartache / Valentino @ Spaceland (Free) – Spaceland has been completely packed all month for the Afternoons residency. This week they’re joined by the Parson Red Heads who bring in a good crowd too.
Death Cab for Cutie / Rogue Wave @ Nokia Theatre (Sold Out)
Robert Plant and Allison Krauss / T. Bone Burnett @ Greek Theatre ($49 - $125)
Avi Buffalo / The Coral Sea / The French Semester / Codpiece @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Rumspringa / The Union Line / The Holloys / Danger Bees @ the Echo (Free / $7 if under 21) – Download Rumspringa’s “Goldmine
Lukas Haas @ Hotel Café
Spider Problem @ Silverlake Lounge (Free)
Anavan / Vampire Pussy @ Pehrspace
Gran Ronde / The Boxing Lesson / The Poor Excuses / Idyllists @ Viper Room ($10) – The new owners booted the old Monday night bookers (who actually made you want to go over there on Monday nights), so this is about the last good Indie night.

Tuesday 6/24/08
[Recommended] The Watson Twins @ Amoeba (Free) – 7:00 PM – Celebrating the release of their new record.
[Recommended] Sunny Day Sets Fire / In Waves / Line and Circle / The Monolators @ Spaceland ($8) – SDSF seems like it would be a good name for a Sunny Day Real Estate tribute band, but they’re actually a pop band with some hype behind them. The rest are all local bands.
Robert Plant and Allison Krauss / T. Bone Burnett @ Greek Theatre ($49 - $125)
Ingrid Michaelson @ El Rey ($20)
Hecuba / Hazm / Brendan Fowler / Laco$te @ the Echo (Free / $5 if under 21)
Stone Temple Pilots / Black Francis @ Hollywood Bowl ($45 tickets remain)
Mighty Six Ninety / Castaneda / Kissing Tigers @ Troubadour ($8)
The Crash that Took Me @ Silverlake Lounge ($8)

Wednesday 6/25/08
[Recommended] Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers / Steve Winwood @ Hollywood Bowl (Sold Out)
[Recommended] Thailand / Good on Paper / The Soft Hands / One Trick Pony @ Silverlake Lounge ($7) – Nice local lineup.
Amos Lee @ Amoeba (Free) – 7:00 PM
Cryptacize / Becky Stark / Palms @ the Echo ($8)
Club NME: Oslo / The Hundred Days / Eject @ Spaceland ($8)
Olin and the Moon / Mouse Kills Tiger @ Tangier
T.I. @ Wiltern ($55 - $65)
Cavil at Rest / Saint Motel / Astra Heights @ Viper Room
Abe Vigoda / Small Breed @ the Smell ($5)

Thursday 6/26/08
[Recommended] The Movies / The Savages / Pizza! / The Voyeurs @ the Echo ($5) – The Movies continue to be one of my favorite local bands. The rest of the bands are all relatively new local bands that I’m starting to hear good things about.
Sam Phillips & the Section Quartet @ Largo ($35)
Oliver Future / The Gray Kid @ Spaceland ($8)
No Love Letters @ Silverlake Lounge ($7)
Meiko @ Hotel Café
Everclear / Soul Asylum / Camper Van Beethoven @ House of Blues Sunset ($27.50)

Friday 6/27/08
[Recommended] Grand Archives / Sera Cahoone @ the Echo ($12) – Mat Brooke from Grand Archives was on the first (and in my opinion, best) Band of Horses record. GA is more like an upbeat version of the Clientele – sunny, West Coast pop. Sera Cahoone was in Carissa’s Wierd with Brooke and Ben Bridwell of Band of Horses.
[Recommended] Jon Brion @ Largo ($30 / 2nd set is $20)
Weave! / Fol Chen / Hearts of Palm UK / The Health Club @ Pehrspace
Hot Hot Heat / The Deadly Syndrome / The Shys @ the Roxy ($25)
Juliette and the Licks @ Viper Room
Nikka Costa @ El Rey ($25)
Dub Club: U-Roy / Cornell Campbell @ Echoplex ($14)
The Autumns / Run Through the Desert @ Spaceland ($10)
Mark Knopfler / Jesca Hoop @ Greek Theatre ($45 - $95)
Dilated Peoples / Aceyalone / The Alchemist @ House of Blues Sunset ($20)
Juliette and the Licks @ Viper Room ($20)
Mick Turner / Exitmusic @ the Smell

Saturday 6/28/08
[Recommended] Fleet Foxes / The Dutchess & the Duke @ the Echo ($12) – Fleet Foxes are my favorite new band. They were the highlight of SXSW and sound perfect harmonizing together.
[Recommended] Sgt. Pepper’s Revisited: Cheap Trick / Billy Corgan / Ian Ball @ Hollywood Bowl ($25 tickets remain) – Good times.
[Recommended] David Sedaris @ Royce Hall (Sold Out) – Anybody read his new book yet?
Kissing Cousins / Summer Darling / Death House Chaplain @ Bordello ($5)
The Spires / Man Miracle / Frankel / Jack Wilson Jr. @ Pehrspace
Panther / Plants and Animals @ Spaceland ($8) – Download Plants and Animals “Faerie Dance
Louis XIV @ Viper Room
Grant Lee Phillips @ Largo ($35)
Ralph’s World @ Echoplex ($15) – Early show at 10:30 AM.
Club Suicide @ Echoplex ($14)
Cyndi Lauper / The B-52’s / Andy Bell of Erasure @ Greek Theatre ($40 - $150)
Louis XIV @ Viper Room ($20)
The 88 / Satisfaction / Derby @ The Roxy ($20) – Remember the 88? They’re finally prepping to release their new record.
Mickey Avalon @ Key Club
Camp Freddy / Louis XIV @ Wasted Space [8755 W Sunset] (Free) – From 1:00 to 9:00 PM.
Kit @ the Smell ($5)

Sunday 6/29/08
[Recommended] Kickchilla: Le Switch / Henry Clay People / You Me and Iowa / I Make This Sound / The Flying Tourbillon Orchestra / Tandemoro / Les Blanks / The Hectors / The Voyeurs / Swim Party / Marvelous Toy @ All Star Lanes in Eagle Rock (Free) – Early show starts at 5:00 PM with two stages. For the past couple of months there’s been a weekly kickball game in Glassell Park that I occasionally take part in. This is a show to benefit people who play kick ball (most of these bands also play in the game). Very good lineup.
[Recommended] Fleet Foxes / The Dutchess & the Duke @ Spaceland ($12) – See Saturday’s post.
Summer Camp: Kenan Bell @ Little Radio Warehouse ($15) [1218 Long Beach Avenue in Downtown Los Angeles] - It's moved back to Sunday. The full lineup will be announced Thursday (with three additional bands being added). Doors open at noon and the show ends by 6:00 PM.
Gilberto Gil / Devendra Banhart / The Album Leaf featuring Mike Heron from Incredible String Band @ Hollywood Bowl ($16 - $96 tickets remain)
Willoughby @ Tangier ($8)
Bob Weir & Ratdog @ Greek Theatre ($40-50)
Captain Ahab @ the Smell ($5)

Rest in Peace: George Carlin

While listening to NPR this morning I heard the news that George Carlin passed away. Carlin was my favorite comedian of all time. I managed to catch his live act a few times over the years. While I was in Las Vegas a couple of weeks ago, I considered seeing his show again, but you always assume you'll get another chance. The guy was incredibly intelligent, able to make both political tirades and observational humor equally hilarious.
I'll always remember being on road trips with my family listening to his comedy tapes on my cassette Walkman over and over again. His more recent HBO specials (since 9/11) were so misanthropic, they made even me uncomfortable. But the body of work was unparalleled. He will be missed.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Recently Announced Concerts - Los Angeles

Hangin' Tough

Excited about the Sigur Ros concert announcement, but I already missed the presale....
Recent Concert Announcements:

Albert Hammond Jr. @ Spaceland on 7/11/08 (on sale now at Ticketweb)
Lucero @ Spaceland on 7/23/08 (on sale now at Ticketweb)
Hercules and the Love Affair @ the Echo on 7/23/08 (on sale Saturday at Noon through Ticketweb)
Lucero @ The Echo on 7/24/08 (on sale now at Ticketweb)
The English Beat / The Fixx / The Alarm @ the Fonda on 7/24/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)
The Hush Sound @ El Rey on 8/5/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)
The Ting Tings @ El Rey on 8/6/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)
The Airborne Toxic Event @ El Rey on 8/7/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)
Nada Surf @ Troubadour on 9/5/08 – 9/6/08 (on sale Now)
IAMX @ El Rey on 9/15/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)
Foals @ El Rey on 9/18/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)
Tokyo Police Club @ the Fonda on 9/18/08 (on sale now)
Dark Star Orchestra @ the Fonda on 9/27/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)
Sigur Ros @ Greek Theatre on 10/2/08 (presale sold out, regular on sale TBD)
The Dandy Warhols / A Place to Bury Strangers @ Wiltern on 10/3/08 (presale now: earth, otherwise Saturday at 10:00 AM)
Tegan & Sara @ The Fonda on 10/16/08 – 10/19/08 (on sale Monday at 10:00 AM)
Mudhoney @ El Rey on 11/14/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)
NKOTB @ Staples on 11/26/08 (on sale Monday at 10:00 AM)

Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Family Tree's "Butters Lament" on Sinking Radio

Here’s my weekly reminder to tune in to Sinking with Sylvia and Todd on Little Radio. The show airs tomorrow (Friday) from Noon – 2:00 PM PST. Tomorrow their guests will Amnion, one of the most talented new LA bands.

Each week Sylvia and Todd feature an official You Set the Scene pick and then I write about it here. I’m perpetually behind, so this week I’m going to play catch up. On the May 30th show, my pick was the Mamas & the Papas’ “Dream a Little Dream of Me.” I picked that one because it was the day before my dad’s birthday and he was a huge Mama Cass fan. Stream the track on the Mamas & the Papas Myspace page. Lately I’ve been listening to Mama Cass’ solo record, The Road’s No Place for a Lady. It’s pretty good too.

On June 6th my pick was the Embarrassment’s “Patio Set.” The Embarrassment are probably the most critically acclaimed band out of Kansas (Wichita of all places). They were active in the late 70s and early 80s. They’re (arguably) a little overrated, but a few of their tracks (including this one) are very enjoyable. This one compares a girl to a patio set. So juvenile, but still amusing. Bar/None just put their two disc compilation, Heyday 1979-1983, back into print on CD. You can stream “Sex Drive” on their Myspace page.

Last week my pick was “The Hollows” by Why? I’m still not sure if I consider myself a Why? fan, but the theme of the show was hip-hop and it was about the closest thing that Sylvia had on her computer (and I forgot to add something). For me his voice is annoying in the right way. The lyrics to this song are just ridiculous. Talking about watching two men have sex in Berlin, etc. Stream the track on their Myspace page.

Which finally brings us to tomorrow.

Tomorrow my pick is the Family Tree’s “Butters Lament.” The Family Tree was a psychpop band led by Bob Segarini (who went on to form the Wackers) who released one album in 1968. All Music Guide sold me on the Rev-Ola reissue with this quote: “Suggesting a middle ground between the Kinks' The Village Green Preservation Society and the best sides of the Left Banke, Miss Butters is a lovely, overlooked triumph of '60s chamber pop..”

I just picked Miss Butters up, so I’m still digesting it. It's a weird concept album and at first some of the arrangements feel a little busy and claustrophobic, but it’s rapidly growing on me. If you’re a regular listener to Sinking Radio, you know Harry Nilsson comes up a lot (Todd loves him and Sylvia tolerates him). Outside of Segarini, The Family Tree is probably best known for having a strong Nilsson connection. Miss Butters and Nilsson’s Aerial Ballet were recorded in the same studio, have the same producer and arranger, share the same cover painter and they came out the same week on the same label. I chose the track, “Butters Lament” because Harry Nilsson collaborated on it.

Tune in tomorrow to hear it.

See Bob Segarini’s Myspace page
Listen to some Family Tree songs on Youtube

Monday, June 16, 2008

Live Music Options: 6/16/08 - 6/22/08

Here comes another LA week where you could easily spend four or five nights out seeing live music. I'm really looking forward to Everest, the Spaceland Tuesday night lineup, Old 97's, the Explorers Club and the Broken West.

Work kicked my ass last week and only made it out to Little Radio's Summer Camp for Imaad Wasif, The Pity Party and Crystal Antlers. All the bands were entertaining. I'd seen Crystal Antlers and The Pity Party several times, so I knew what to expect, so I was most pleasantly surprised with Wasif. Really tight trio and great guitar sound.

Monday 6/16/08
[Recommended] Afternoons / Everest / Ravens and Chimes / Oh Darling @ Spaceland (Free) – Afternoons (ex-Irving) residency continues. Everest put out one of my favorite releases of the year, and every time I see them they sound better. They’ve got a European tour lined up with My Morning Jacket.
Xu Xu Fang / The Human Value / Idyllists / Sagittarians @ Viper Room ($10 or free with RSVP to VR’s Myspace) – CD Release party for Xu Xu Fang’s new record.
Abe Vigoda / Times New Viking / Psychedelic Horseshit / Fabulous Diamonds / Bipolar Bear @ The Smell ($7) – Strong lineup.
Spider Problem / The Voyeurs / Jesus Makes the Shotgun Sound @ Silverlake Lounge (Free)
The French Semester / Manhattan Murder Mystery @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Rumspringa / Random Patterns / Golden Animals / Halloween Swim Team @ the Echo (Free) – Download Rumspringa’s “Goldmine
Sarah Silverman @ Largo ($25)
Lukas Haas @ Hotel Café
New No Age @ Pehrspace
Lil’ Wayne @ House of Blues Sunset (Sold Out)

Tuesday 6/17/08
[Recommended] Airborne Toxic Event / The Deadly Syndrome / Henry Clay People @ Spaceland ($10) – Very strong local lineup. Airborne Toxic Event’s debut record comes out next month on Majordomo. I’m a big Deadly Syndrome and Henry Clay People fan.
[Recommended] Devon Williams @ Amoeba (Free) – 7:00 PM.
[Recommended] Let’s Independent: The Parson Red Heads / Buddy / The Hidden Hooks @ Boardner’s ($5) – Radio Free Silver Lake’s monthly party. I like The Parson Red Heads and Buddy, but haven’t heard The Hidden Hooks.
Islands @ El Rey ($15) – Note new location.
Citizen Fish @ the Echo ($10)
Effects of Cable Television / Austin James Band @ Silverlake Lounge ($7)
Marc Cohn @ Hotel Café
The New Bloods @ the Smell ($5)

Wednesday 6/18/08
[Recommended] Old 97’s @ Amoeba (Free) – 7:00 PM.
Rilo Kiley / Lavender Diamond / Benji Hughes @ the Greek ($35)
Dub Club: Extra Golden @ Echo ($10) – “Kenyan and American cooperative” on Thrill Jockey records.
Styrofoam / Broken Spindles @ Knitting Factory ($10)
Club NME: Midnight Movies / Mono in VCF / I Love Math @ Spaceland ($8)
Fink / Jaymay / Pop Levi @ Troubadour ($14)
Liam Finn @ Largo ($15)
Dead Sara / Your Highness Electric @ Silverlake Lounge ($8)
Eleni Mandell (acoustic) / Olin and the Moon / Joel Virgil @ Tangier ($10)
Low End Theory Club: Th’ Corn Gangg @ Airliner
Megapuss / Lauren Dukoff @ Hammer Museum at UCLA (Free) - Megapuss is a joke band featuring Devendra Banhart and Priestbird's drummer.

Thursday 6/19/08
[Recommended] Old 97’s / Hayes Carll / I Love Math @ Crash Mansion ($25) – The Old 97’s have always been a fun live band and their new album is a return to form. I heard Hayes Carll was fantastic at Stagecoach this year, but I just missed him. I Love Math is a new offshoot of the Deathray Davies.
[Recommended] Sea Wolf / Jealous Girlfriends / Patrick Park @ the Echoplex ($15)
The Monolators / The Flying Tourbillon Orchestra / Jack Wilson Jr. / Downtown Union @ All Star Lanes in Eagle Rock (Free)
[Recommended] Yes Me to Death / Useless Keys / Kissing Cousins @ Spaceland
Earth / Jesse Sykes & the Sweet Hereafter / Restaurant @ the Echo ($13)
Duffy @ El Rey (Sold Out)
Martha Wainwright / Jesca Hoop @ Troubadour ($18)
The Watkins Family Hour @ Largo ($25)
Moving Picture Show @ Silverlake Lounge ($7)
Meiko @ Hotel Café
Adam Marsland @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Nico Vega @ Viper Room ($12)

Friday 6/20/08
[Recommended] Jon Brion @ Largo ($30 / $20 for second set)
[Recommended] Adeline and the Philistines / Paperplanes / Hello Dragon @ the Scene ($5) – Adeline and the Philistines features Aaron Kyle from Le Switch, Brian and Stevie from the Movies and Jim from the Radar Bros.
RZA as Bobby Digital @ the Fonda ($25)
[Recommended] Mike Stinson @ Cinema Bar in Culver City
Wolf Eyes / John Weise / Damion Romero @ Spaceland ($10)
Opening Night at the Bowl: Liza Minneli / B.B. King @ Hollywood Bowl ($16 – $101)
Martha Wainwright @ Amoeba (Free) – 7:00 PM
Marie Digby / Eric Hutchinson @ El Rey ($20)
Hayden / Haley Bonar @ Troubadour ($15)
Nous Non Plus / Casxio / Tour de France @ Bordello ($10)
The Ringers @ Viper Room ($12)
Rats / The Friendly Skies / Apathetic Ronald McDonald @ the Smell
Great White @ Crash Mansion ($20)

Saturday 6/21/08
[Recommended] No Age / The Explorers Club / The Deadly Syndrome @ Little Radio Warehouse ($15) [1218 Long Beach Ave. in Downtown LA] – A third band will be added to the lineup. The Explorers Club do that Beach Boys’ sound so well.
[Recommended] Make Music Pasadena: Autolux / The Raevonettes / Division Day / The Little Ones / Everest / Dengue Fever / Kinky / Jesca Hoop / Meiko @ Pasadena (Free) –. Impressive lineup with six stages. Starts at noon and goes into the night. Check the website for more information.
[Recommended] The Blakes / The Broken West @ Spaceland ($10) – The Broken West just finished up their sophomore album, Now or Heaven. It’s due out on Merge Records on September 9th.
Seun Kuti and Egypt 80 @ El Rey ($33.50)
Lightspeed Champion / Flowers Forever / The Explorers Club / Palms @ Troubadour ($15)
Mariachi Festival @ Hollywood Bowl
These New Puritans / Meho Plaza @ Echoplex ($13)
Avi Buffalo / Make Me / Hotbodies @ Pehrspace
She Wants Revenge / Be Your Own Pet / The Virgins / Switches @ the Wiltern ($25)
The Vacation @ Viper Room ($12)
Chip Taylor @ McCabe’s ($16)

Sunday 6/22/08
[Recommended] Frightened Rabbit / Oxford Collapse / Sunny Day Sets Fire @ The Roxy ($12.50) – Frightened Rabbit are a good indie band from Glasgow.
Benefit for Ecclesia Kenya Outreach: Fiction Family / Sean and Sara Watkins / Roger Moon / Nick Thune @ Spaceland ($12)
Thievery Corporation / Seu Jorge / Bebel Gilberto / Los Amigos Invisibles @ Hollywood Bowl ($10 - $96)
Vans Warped Tour @ Ventura County Fairgrounds ($30)
Grand Hallway @ Tangier ($10)
Fay Wrays / Rademacher / Transmissions / Natural Disasters @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Earth Wind & Fire / Macy Gray @ Greek Theatre ($50 - $90)

Friday, June 13, 2008

New Music Releases: 6/10/08

Lil Wayne seems to be getting the best reviews of the week. Other than what I've highlighted, Sloan, Supergrass and Robert Pollard are the most intriguing.....
Albums Released on 6/10/08:
Records I've Heard:
Priscilla Ahn: A Good Day (Blue Note) – Part of the Hotel Café scene. I don’t listen to a lot of female singer-songwriters, but she’s young, attractive and she’s got a nice voice. It’s a very mellow record. Beck’s Odelay-era backing band appears on a lot of the record (Joey Waronker recorded a lot of it).

My Morning Jacket: Evil Urges (ATO) – Each year, a couple of your favorite artists release confounding albums. Evil Urges is my candidate for disappointment of the year (so far). By the end of the third song, you’re asking yourself what kind of shitty street crack made Jim James think he could sing like Prince. Then “I’m Amazed” comes on and you think you might be back in business. Then the gag reflex kicks in again (for a totally different reason) when “Thank You Too!” comes on. Then you get about four passable songs and you figure you might as well just delete the whole thing off of your MP3 player. But then “Look at You” and “Aluminum Park” remind you why you liked the band in the first place. Most critics seem to dig it. It’s got a 73 on Metacritic. At the Greek Theatre on 9/21/08.

On My Shopping List:
Gene Clark: Silverado ’75 – Live and Unreleased (Collector’s Choice) – The very first official release of a Clark solo show. From a 1975 concert in Colorado.

Emmylou Harris: All I Intended To Be (Nonesuch) – Emmylou’s one of my favorite female vocalists of all time. This record’s loaded with guests.

Other Releases:
Adele, The Bangkok Five [Knitting Factory 6/14], The Beach Boys 16 disc singles box set, Walter Becker, Black Diamond Heavies (mp3), Haley Bonar (mp3) [Troubadour 6/20/08], Solomon Burke [Hollywood Bowl 8/13/08], Charlatans UK, The Cool Kids, Rob Dickinson, Jakob Dylan, Flying Lotus, The Fratellis [Key Club 6/15/08], Joan as Police Woman (mp3), Lexie Mountain Boys (mp3), Lil Wayne [House of Blues 6/16/08], Love reissues (False Start and Out Here), Alanis Morrissette, N.E.R.D. [Shrine 7/19/08], Robert Pollard, Sloan, Ben Sollee, A Storm of Light, Supergrass [Avalon 7/12/08], Martha Wainwright [Troubadour 6/19/08], Tony Joe White, Wooden Shjips reissue, Dan Zanes

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Townes Van Zandt: If I Needed You

This is my weekly reminder to tune in to Sinking with Sylvia and Todd on Little Radio. The show airs Friday from Noon - 2:00 PM on the internet. Tomorrow their guest will be Jeff Weiss. Jeff has the popular blog, Passion of the Weiss and is also a regular contributor to the LA Weekly and LA Times. Tomorrow he'll be educating us all on hip hop.

Each week on their show, I make an "official" selection, they play it and I eventually write about it. On May 23rd my pick was Townes Van Zandt's "If I Needed You." Like a lot of people, my first exposure to TVZ was through his writing. Back in the early 1980s I listened to a lot of country radio on road trips with my Dad. Circa 1983, TVZ's song, "Pancho and Lefty" was a number one hit thanks to Merle Haggard and Willie Nelson. It didn't really occur to me that Townes had written the song until I moved to Texas in 1999. When you live in Austin, Townes' legend is unavoidable.

Starting in 1999 I started to pick up TVZ's records. TVZ pretty much personifies Austin for me (even more than Willie). He/it are unmistakably Texas in their cowboy hats with their drawl, but they're sensitive, smoke some grass and possibly have progressive politics. Townes has been on my mind again lately, because I just finished the John Kruth biography, To Live's to Fly - The Ballad of the Late, Great Townes Van Zandt. The book's only essential for the real fans. It's long and not all that well written, but does have a lot of great anecdotes and some interesting analysis of the songs.

Townes is a fascinating writer and character, but I don't spend a lot of time listening to his albums. Most of his studio recordings are marred by poor production, and a lot of live recordings are marred by his alcoholism. But when he nails it, he nails it. So many of his songs are completely heartbreaking and haunting. "If I Needed You" has always been one of my favorites. I'm not sure if I prefer Townes' original version or Emmylou Harris' cover, but why choose when they're both so great?

If I needed you
Would you come to me
Would you come to me
For to ease my pain
If you needed me
I would come to you
I would swim the seas
For to ease your pain

Townes' discography has been mired in lawsuits over the year, so you never know what you'll be able to find at the record store. The studio albums are hit or miss, so you should probably start with one of the compilations (Texas Troubadour's pretty good). There's also an interesting documentary about TVZ called Be Here to Love Me. Definitely worth popping in your Netflix queue.

Check out the Townes Van Zandt Myspace page.
See TVZ perform and talk about "If I Needed You" on Youtube (check out the girl who's interviewing him).

Recently Announced LA Music Shows

Mogwai are Coming to the Wiltern
Recently Announced Shows:
Beck @ Echoplex on 6/13/08 (update: goes on sale at 5:00 PM Thursday)

Download Festival @ Gibson Amphitheatre on 7/20/08 (on sale now) – Jesus & Mary Chain and Gang of Four were added to the bill

Jimmy Eat World @ Avalon on 7/20/08 (on sale Saturday at Noon)

Black Kids @ El Rey on 7/29/08 (on sale now)

Serj Tankian @ Wiltern on 8/2/08 (on sale Saturday at Noon)

Bow Wow @ Wiltern on 8/17/08 (on sale Saturday at Noon)

The Walkmen / Richard Swift and the National Sons of Freedom @ Troubadour on 8/21/08 & 8/22/08 (on sale now)

Bon Iver / A.A. Bondy @ Troubadour on 8/26/08 (on sale now) – 2nd date added, which doesn’t conflict with my Radiohead tickets.

Amos Lee @ The Fonda on 9/8/08 (on sale Saturday at 10:00 AM)

Mogwai / Fuck Buttons @ Wiltern on 9/9/08 (on sale Friday at Noon)

Janet Jackson @ Staples Center on 9/17/08 (on sale Monday at 10:00 AM)

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Ticket Giveaway - Times New Viking @ the Echo and the Smell

Times New Viking is coming to town for two shows. On Sunday, they're playing Part Time Punks at the Echo. Joining them on the bill are Psychedlic Horseshit and Fabulous Diamonds. All three of those bands plus local bands Abe Vigoda and Bipolar Bear will be playing at the Smell on Monday night.
I have one pair of tickets to give away for each of these shows. Email me [dukeufo at hotmail] and tell me why you want to go to the show and which night you want to go. Put Times New Viking in the subject line. The contest closes Friday at Noon PST.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Live Music in LA: 6/9/08 - 6/15/08

I'm all out of it after a weekend in Vegas. I saw some good stuff last week: the Whigs, Henry Clay People and Le Switch were fantastic. James was good at Spaceland on Friday night too. This is looking like a pretty average week but a lot of people will be excited by the Crystal Antlers at the Roxy and the Ting Tings at the Troubadour. I'm probably most excited that Summer Camp is starting up again on Saturday at Little Radio.

Monday 6/9/08
Radio Alert: Billy Bragg on Morning Becomes Eclectic (89.9 FM/KCRW)
[Recommended]Afternoons / Willoughby / Western States Motel / White Hinterland @ Spaceland (Free) - Afternoons is the Irving guys. I'm curious about White Hinterland....
Rumspringa / What Laura Thinks / My Pet Saddle / The Franks @ the Echo (Free) – Download Rumspringa’s “Goldmine
The French Semester @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Santogold @ Hollywood & Highland (Free) – Early show at 6:00 PM.
Augustana / Wild Sweet Orange / Paddy Casey @ Troubadour (Sold Out)
Lukas Haas / Passenger @ Hotel Cafe
Spider Problem / Artichoke / The Nightbirds @ Silverlake Lounge (Free)
Idyllists / Aushua / The Orion Experience / Shiloe @ Viper Room ($10 or free with RSVP to Viper Room)

Tuesday 6/10/08
Radio Alert: Los Campesinos on Morning Becomes Eclectic (89.9 FM/KCRW)
[Recommended] - Jeremy Enigk / Damien Jurado / Happy Stars @ Spaceland ($15) - I'm giving away tickets for this one.
Augustana / Wild Sweet Orange / Patrick Park @ Troubadour ($20)
Rebirth Brass Band @ the Mint
Billy Bragg @ El Rey (Sold Out)
Priscilla Ahn / Jesse Harris @ Hotel Cafe - Record release show. Early show at 8:00 PM.
Desert Diamonds @ Silverlake Lounge ($8)
Aimee Mann @ Largo (Sold Out)
Rob Dickinson of Catherine Wheel @ Viper Room ($15)

Wednesday 6/11/08
[Recommended] Princeton / Olin and the Moon / Eleni Mandell (acoustic) @ Tangier ($7)
Crystal Castles @ The Roxy ($17)
Spain / Daniel Ahearn / Correatown @ The Echo ($7)
Bryan Scary and the Shedding Tears @ Boardner’s
Rebirth Brass Band @ the Mint
Club NME: Oslo @ Spaceland
Wailing Souls @ Echoplex ($15)
Bajofondo @ El Rey ($20)
Heloise and the Savoir Faire / Pop Levi @ Silverlake Lounge ($10)
Bipolar Bear @ The Smell
Sheryl Crow / Rocco DeLuca and the Burden @ Greek Theatre

Thursday 6/12/08
[Recommended] The Helio Sequence / Talkdemonic / Wait.Think.Fast @ the Echoplex ($15) - Early show.
Dax Riggs / The Builders and Butchers /John Barrett's Bass Drum of Death @ Spaceland ($15) - Dax Riggs was in Deadboy and Elephantmen. I've heard good things about the Builders and Butchers.
The Detroit Cobras / Les Sans Culottes / Killola @ Troubadour ($18)
[Recommended] Mezzanine Owls / The Secret 6 / The Pity Party / Coco B's @ Alex's Bar in Long Beach - Record release party for the Secret 6.
The Matches / Scissors for Lefty @ Knitting Factory ($14)
Rebirth Brass Band @ the Mint
[Recommended] Mike Stinson @ Hyperion Tavern
Not Exactly the Pixies @ the Echo ($10) - Pixies tribute band/benefit
Meiko / Astra Heights @ Hotel Cafe
Nellie McKay @ Largo ($25)
Paperplanes @ Mr. T's Bowl
Erykah Badu / The Roots @ Greek Theatre

Friday 6/13/08
[Recommended] Jon Brion @ Largo ($30)
The Submarines / Castledoor @ the Echo ($10)
Crystal Castles @ The Roxy ($17) - Late show at midnight
Pizza! @ L’Keg
The Ting Tings @ Troubadour (Sold Out)
Tea Leaf Green / Hot Buttered Rum @ El Rey ($20)
Faun Fables / Hour of the Shipwreck @ Knitting Factory ($12)
Smokey Robinson @ Greek Theatre

Saturday 6/14/08
[Recommended] Summer Camp: Imaad Wasif and Two Part Beast / Crystal Antlers / The Pity Party @ Little Radio Warehouse ($15) - Free drinks (Colt 45, wine, Sparks)
Earthless / Ancestors / Tweak Bird @ The Smell
Crosby, Stills and Nash @ Greek Theatre
Playboy Jazz Festival: Al Jarreau @ Hollywood Bowl
West Indian Girl @ the Scene
GZA / RJD2 @ Orpheum Theatre
Dirty Sweet / The Binges / Desert Diamonds @ Spaceland
Mad Caddies / The Supervillians @ Troubadour ($15)
Tyrone Wells @ Troubadour ($17)
The Flash Express @ Safari Sam's
Greg Proops Chat Show: John C. Reilly / Russell Brand @ Largo ($20)

Sunday 6/15/08
Russian Circles / Daughters @ Troubadour ($12)
Dosh / Anathallo / Karin Tatoyan @ Spaceland ($10) - Anticon scene.
Times New Viking /Psychedelic Horseshit / Fabulous Diamonds @ the Echo ($10) - I'll be giving away tickets for this one.
Playboy Jazz Festival: Keb Mo @ Hollywood Bowl
[Recommended] Mike Stinson @ Safari Sam’s - Early show during the day.
The Brendan Hines @ Hotel Cafe
Russell Brand @ the Roxy ($25)

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Ticket Giveaway: Jeremy Enigk / Damien Jurado

I've got two pairs of tickets to give away for the Jeremy Enigk / Damien Jurado show at Spaceland this Tuesday (June 10th). Enigk's band, Sunny Day Real Estate, was emo before emo was a marketing strategy for Hot Topic. He's got such an evocative voice. Damien Jurado's super talented too.

To win these tickets email me [dukeufo at hotmail] and tell me why you want these tickets. The contest closes Tuesday at Noon.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

The Nerves' "When You Find Out"

That's The Nerves on the Cover
Here’s my weekly reminder to tune in to Sinking with Sylvia and Todd on Little Radio Friday from Noon to 2:00 PM. Tomorrow they don’t have any scheduled guests.

Each week I pick a track, they play it, and I write about it here. On May 15th my pick was The Nerves’ “When You Find Out.” The Nerves were a short-lived LA power pop trio who were active from 1975 – 1978. They only released one EP and are best known for writing “Hanging on the Telephone” which was made famous by Blondie.

I first became familiar with The Nerves after picking up the excellent Rhino compilation, DIY: Come Out and Play – American Power Pop 1975-1978. “When You Find Out” jumped out at me because it’s so damn catchy and sounds like a lost British Invasion track.

In the early 90’s, Rhino did a whole series of DIY compilations about UK and US power pop and punk scenes from the 1970s and early 80s. When Amoeba first opened I picked up most of the compilations for $5 - $8. Some of the compilations have since become a bit tougher to track down (especially this one, which goes for about $30 used). Most of the compilations are fantastic, mixing the obscure with the heavy hitters. As a result of these compilations, I’ve added a number of bands to my already lengthy list of obscure records to try to track down.
No Age recently added a cover of The Nerves’ “When You Find Out” to b-side of their “Eraser” 7”. I haven’t heard it yet, but I’m curious…

Stream “When You Find Out” on the Nerves’ Myspace page

Last Second Show: James @ Spaceland on Friday

For you youngster, James was a pretty huge band out of Manchester in the late 1980s through the 1990s. They played Morning Becomes Eclectic this morning and they're doing a last minute show at Spaceland tomorrow night. Tickets are available for $12 through Ticketweb. Should be a great setting to see them. You can stream their new record on their Myspace page.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

New Music Releases: 6/3/08

Guess Weezer's the biggest release, but I was most excited about Fleet Foxes....

Albums released on 6/3/08:
Things I've Heard:
Fleet Foxes: Fleet Foxes (Sub Pop) – These guys are my candidate for newcomers of the year. They were the highlight of SXSW. I loved their debut EP. Even with all those expectations, their debut full length still managed to impress me. The band harmonizes so well. They’re just kids, but their influences are classic rock and folk. While a lot of people have compared them to My Morning Jacket (his voice does sound a bit like Jim James) they probably draw more from Yes. Very impressive debut.
Highly Recommended.
Download “White Winter Hymnal
See them at the Echo on 6/28/08 and Spaceland on 6/29/08

Ladytron: Velocifero (Nettwerk) – Ladytron’s a band that I’ve always liked, even though I don’t tend to listen to synth or electro-pop. Their music has a darkness and bite to it that help it transcend the genre. If I went to dance clubs, this is the type of (new) music I’d actually enjoy hearing. This is another solid release.

Shearwater: Rook (Matador) – Unlike Ladytron (a band I like in a genre I don’t), Shearwater’s a band I’ve never gotten into, in a genre I love. I mean, on paper I should absolutely adore them. Jonathan Meiburg, the main guy in Shearwater was, until very recently, also in Okkervil River (who put out my favorite record last year). Both bands play dramatic, orch-indie rock, so what’s my problem? Meiburg has a love it or hate it voice. While his fans will tell you he’s got one of the best voices around, it tends to make me cringe. The voice works for me when he’s pissed off (“Century Eyes”) but makes me want to punch him when he gets all precious (“Home Life”). Listen for yourself. I think the music’s interesting, but I just can’t get over the voice. Download “Rooks” and “Leviathan, Bound

On my shopping list:
Centro-Matic / South San Gabriel: Dual Hawks (Misra) – Will Johnson’s another guy with a love it or hate it voice. This time I tend to really like it. He conveys a lot of emotion with a lot less range than a guy like Jonathan Meiburg. Download “I, the Kite” and “Trust to Lose

Other noteworthy new releases:
The Accidental, Adem covers album, Ashanti, Crystal Castles vinyl [Roxy on 6/11/08], The Futureheads, The Gang, Jean Grae, Ed Harcourt [Spaceland on 6/4/08], Harvey Milk, Islands vinyl, Jaguar Love EP, Joshua James, The M’s, Aimee Mann [Largo on 6/2 & 6/3/08], Manu Chao remix EP, The Mother Truckers, Oppenheimer, Paper Rival [Knitting Factory 7/5/08], The Pinker Tones, Radiohead best of [Hollywood Bowl 8/24-8/25/08], Gavin Rossdale, Sebadoh: Bubble & Scrape deluxe reissue, She & Him vinyl, Stars Like Fleas, Subtle, Thank You, The Ting Tings [Troubadour 6/13/08], The Virgins [Wiltern on 6/21/08], Weezer, Gary Wilson DVD

Recent LA Concert Announcements

Okkervil River

Recently Announced Shows:
Coldplay @ the Forum on 7/14/08 (Best Buy presale begins Thursday at 10:00 AM, KROQ presale begins Friday at 10:00 AM, regular onsale begins Saturday at 10:00 AM)

The Raconteurs / The Kills @ Greek Theatre on 9/22/08 (KROQ presale starts Thursday at 10:00AM, regular onsale starts Saturday at Noon)

Okkervil River @ The Fonda on 9/23/08 (tickets on sale Thursday at

Calexico @ The Fonda on 9/29/08 (on sale Friday at 10:00 AM)
New Kids on the Block @ Staples on 10/8/08 (American Express presale on now, regular sale starts Monday at 10:00 AM)

Monday, June 02, 2008

LA Live Music Options 6/2/08 - 6/8/08

Win Tickets to See The Whigs at the Echo on Wednesday

I didn't get out much last week. Finally saw a few songs from Princeton and Grande Ole Party on Saturday night. This week I'm most looking forward to the Whigs with Henry Clay People and Le Switch. I've got two pairs of tickets to give away for the show. To win, email me [dukeufo at hotmail] and tell me what your favorite beach is in LA. The contest closes Wednesday at Noon.
Monday 6/2/08
Radio Alert: Aimee Mann on Morning Becomes Eclectic (89.9 FM/KCRW)
[Recommended] Bobb Bruno / Darylalexander / Fantastic Sleep / Voice on Tape @ the Smell ($5) – Bobb sports a bunny suit and plays drums along to looped tracks. It’s oddly compelling.
[Recommended] Afternoons / Warpaint / Kenan Bell / Gus Black @ Spaceland (Free) – Afternoons is doing the Monday night residency at Spaceland this month. After Alex Church left Irving to form Sea Wolf, the rest of the guys started this band, adding some additional friends. Tonight’s lineup is maybe the most diverse of the month.
Vice/Colt 45 Party: Moonrats / Crystal Antlers @ King King (Free with RSVP)
Spider Problem / Pizza! @ Silverlake Lounge (Free) – Spider Problem’s doing the Monday night residency at the Silverlake Lounge this month.
The French Semester / BigBang / Downtown Union / The Health Club @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Rumspringa / Dawes / Darren Weiss / Clyde Wren @ the Echoplex (Free if 21, $7 if under) – Rumspringa’s doing the Monday night residency at the Echo (tonight’s actually at the Echoplex) this month. Download Rumspringa’s “Goldmine
Io Echo / Idyllists / In Waves / Solar @ Viper Room (Free w/ RSVP to Viper Room’s Myspace, $10 otherwise)
Brooke Fraser @ Knitting Factory ($15)
Aimee Mann @ Largo at the Coronet ($40)
Kyle Mabson and Josh Taylor Supergroup #1 @ Pehrspace

Tuesday 6/3/08
Newton Faulkner @ Troubadour ($12)
The Metal Shakespeare Company / Pleasure @ Spaceland ($8)
Colin Hay @ Largo at the Coronet ($35)
Little Jackie @ Viper Room ($10)

Wednesday 6/4/08
Radio Alert: The Ditty Bops on Morning Becomes Eclectic (89.9 FM/KCRW)
[Recommended] The Whigs / The Henry Clay People / Le Switch @ The Echo ($13) – The Whigs were one of my favorite bands at SXSW this year. They play unpretentious rock ‘n’ roll that just sounds really good. And they’re playing with two of my favorite local bands. I’ve got a couple of pairs of tickets to give away for this one.
[Recommended] Jonathan Richman / Charlie Wadhams @ the Mint ($18)
Club NME: Ed Harcourt / Jeff Klein / Army Navy @ Spaceland ($12) – Great venue if you’re a fan.
The Long Blondes / Castledoor @ the Troubadour ($15) – Brits, The Long Blondes are touring in support of their new record, Couples.
Chris Thile @ Largo at the Coronet ($25)
Olin & the Moon / Keith Waggoner @ Tangier ($7)
The Binges @ Viper Room
Low End Theory: Eliot Lipp / Holloys / What’s the Science @ Airliner
The Quarter After @ the Standard – Download “Turning Away

Thursday 6/5/08
Radio Alert: James on Morning Becomes Eclectic (89.9 FM/KCRW)
[Recommended] George Clinton & the Parliament Funkadelic @ Crash Mansion ($40) – Funk legend.
[Recommended] Jonathan Richman @ the Mint ($18)
The Black Angels / Darker My Love @ Troubadour ($14) – Austinites drawing from the same influences as the Brian Jonestown Massacre.
Rainbow Arabia / Geneva Jacuzzi / Siddhartha / Corridor @ Spaceland – Danny from Future Pigeon
The Watkins Family Hour w/ Fiona @ Largo at the Coronet ($25)
Chapin Sisters @ Silverlake Lounge ($8)
Kris Special / Kissing Tigers / Evil Maria @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Girl School: Chester French / Kenan Bell @ Viper Room ($12)

Friday 6/6/08
Radio Alert: The Chapin Sisters on Morning Becomes Eclectic (89.9 FM/KCRW)
[Recommended] Jon Brion @ Largo at the Coronet ($30 gets you in at 8:30, $20 gets you in at 11:15) – Jon Brion’s first appearance at the new Largo.
[Recommended] Jonathan Richman @ the Mint ($18)
The Mountain Goats / Annuals @ Natural History Museum ($9) – Another impressive lineup at First Fridays
Seasons / The Monolators / Avi Buffalo / Master Slave @ Mr. T’s Bowl
Pizza! @ Pehrspace
Mr. Gnome / Bad Flirt @ Knitting Factory Alternative ($8)
Local H @ Troubadour ($15)
Living Legends @ The Fonda ($22)
Joan of Arc / 31 Knots @ Knitting Factory ($14)
The Pacific @ the Echo ($5)
Steve Reynolds / Gus Black @ Hotel Café
Dead Kennedys @ House of Blues ($22)
Garrison Keillor @ Greek Theatre ($46 – 99)
Adult Swim Presents Metalocalypse: Dethklok / Chimaira / Soilent Green @ The Wiltern
The Wombats / Pop Noir @ The Roxy ($14) – The Wombats are from Liverpool.
The Ditty Bops @ McCabe’s (Early show sold out / later show $20)

Saturday 6/7/08
POSTPONED - The Pity Party / Crystal Antlers / Imaad Wasif @ Little Radio Summer Camp ($10) – THIS WAS POSTPONED
[Recommended] Los Campesinos! / Parenthetical Girls / Abe Vigoda @ Troubadour ($15) – Los Campesinos! are a fun Welsh group.
[Recommended] Jonathan Richman @ the Mint ($18)
[Recommended] The Tyde / Baby Cakes / E.S.P.S. / Japanese Motors @ the Smell ($5)
[Recommended] The Sweet Hurt / Alex Lilly / Liz Pappademas / Evan Slamka @ Pehrspace – EP Release party for the Sweet Hurt
Johnny Bennett @ Hotel Café ($10)
Frog Eyes / Thailand @ Echo ($10)
Bootie LA @ Echoplex ($12)
Kanye West / Rihanna / N.E.R.D. / Lupe Fiasco @ Staples Center (Sold Out)
The Queers @ Safari Sam’s ($14)
The Paul F. Tompkins Show with Ben Lee @ Largo at the Coronet ($20)
Firewater / Nico Stai / Miss Derringer / Western States Motel @ the Roxy ($12)
Freedy Johnston plays with Jackshit @ McCabe’s ($20)

Sunday 6/8/08
[Recommended] Grande Ole Echo: I See Hawks in LA / Mike Stinson / Old Californio / Chapin Sisters @ the Echo (Free) – Early show. Record release party for I See Hawks in LA. A great way to lose a second straight weekend day. Some of the better local country bands.
[Recommended] No Age / Mika Miko / Abe Vigoda / HAIM @ the Smell – Matinee show from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Dead Ponies @ Redwood Bar & Grill
Wayne Hancock @ Safari Sam’s ($15)
Joan of Arc / 31 Knots @ Pehrspace
Russell Brand @ the Roxy ($25)