A nice gathering of barbecue goers spent their late afternoon at the Echo on Sunday. Didn't have much time to eat since Space Mtn, Let's Go Sailing, and ArmyNavy took the midslot sets (The Red Lights and Man of the Year also performed). All three were in top form. ArmyNavy is on the verge; Let's Go Sailing could make a comfortable living off of "Icicles" alone; and you already know we bought stock in Space Mtn long ago... Later on that evening, Yes Me To Death and Artichoke played their last residency night at Spaceland. I've been lukewarm on YMTD's live shows -- although they're still fairly new -- but their cd is actually pretty good. Artichoke just put out their new wonderful CD 26 Scientists Volume One Anning - Malthus. Gosh, they've been around long enough to be called scene veterans, but hopefully they don't consider a move to Canada considering the success of some other experimental indie-rock band. They play every first friday of the month at Mr. T's Bowl for free until forever.
We try to avoid crowds whenever we can but what a lineup at the Troubadour on Monday. Unfortunately arrived toward the end of the Consafos set but those last three notes rocked. I think it's safe to say that we wouldn't have been anywhere near West Hollywood that night if Bella Lea were not playing. They played a rather relaxed handful of songs that offered a taste of bigger things to come. "Save It" is just too painfully good. And we're so glad The Velvet Teen played "Counting Backwards," which was a gift for not having seen them in four years.
A friend is working on some new concept designs for Hyundai. The Neos is one of the more recent ones they've been showing off. Eh. My favorite is still the Peugeot Feline.
Kate Earl's new cd comes out May 10th. Fans of Rickie Lee Jones, Carole King, and Joni Mitchell should surely snatch this one up quickly. Insiders say she's the next big thing out of L.A. and we can hardly argue with them. Watching her music and onstage personna evolve over the past few years it was clear early on that she was a fast learner (those first few shows were rough). My favorite song for far too long has been "Hero," a song she usually plays last at her shows and fittingly comes toward the end of a rather lovely debut album.
Kate Earl - Fate Is the Hunter (Warner Bros.)
- Someone to Love
- Cry Sometimes
- Come This Far
- When You're Older
- Sweet 16
- Surrender (bonus hidden track)
Pre-order/purchase the album here.
n.lannon will be a household name someday... Well, just maybe a household name in the homes of those still grieving over Elliott Smith (this includes me). But don't be fooled by his young Ivy League pretty boy looks, he's got some indie-pop hooks up his sleeve and a nice touch around the fretboard. Plus, his latest release Chemical Friends is just too good... In hipster circles Summer At Shatter Creek's latest album All the Answers is often described as "bril'" or even "genus" (we Angelenos are getting oh-so lazy with our trendy terms of endearment). In case you haven't heard, spacey Neil Young "folktronica" is the new Avril Lavigne and not many do it better than the Creek... The woman behind the beauty of The Weeds is Emily Ana Zeitlyn. She stopped in L.A. on her cross-country travels with friend Birdie Busch direct from the suddenly hopping scene of Philadelphia. Zeitlyn's plain folk poetry is simply lovely. Music must run in her family or something... Meow Meow showcased in front of some peeps at the Echo awhile back. Made up of members of bands that never got enough label attention (Pink Noise Test, Plexi), they've been around for about a year and all of a sudden they're a blip on the radar. Eric Heywood (Son Volt) and Rob Capanella (The Quarter After) joined them for a few songs. I know Hellie probably won't listen to the hypemakers after all the hassle he's gone through over the years, but this band definitely has my attention at least. They don't play too often so I wouldn't linger too much next time.
Let it be known, that the perfect position at a 400 Blows show requires one to be an earlobe's length from Christian's stack, punching distance from Skot's free hand, and a groupie's measurement away from the stage in order to drool at Ferdinand's physical assault of his drumkit. It's taken me nearly ten years and a few flesh wounds to figure this out but I think I got it now. A few weeks back the Blows played a midnight show at Hanging Jury with the lovely From Monument To Masses, officially kicking off the promotion of their stunning new album "Angel's Trumpets and Devil's Trombones," out May 9th on GSL.
I love this record. You have to feel for any producer who has to capture the minimalistic grandeur of the Blows, but Alex Newport (At the Drive-In, The Mars Volta) manages to pull it off. All the things we love about this band (Skot's frenetic wailing, Christian's ruthless chromatics, and Ferdinand's snarled brutality) are in tact and it all comes through with the right amount of aggression one would hope for... There is not one soft spot on this album but "Make A Wish," "The Average Guy," and "The World Was Yours," are some of the best post-punk/hardcore tracks I've ever heard period. I assure you, there will not be very many records this year better than this one. Maybe even none.
Angela Correa had her cd release for "Correatown" last Thursday and I can't say I've seen her sound any better than on this night. The girl has just got one of the sweetest croons this side of Patsy Cline and when she teams up with Tommy Brosseau it's Les Paul and Mary Ford all over again. She was also joined by Joanie Mendenhall who added just the right amount of Rhodes and harmony vocal. All in all, a lovely night of music for those able to squeeze into Tangier (The Chapin Sisters, Angie Hart, among others)...
A few days later, we decided to brave the squeeze of eastside traffic and head out to Claremont College to see a rare westside performance by Virginia native Paul Curreri. Those Curreri Bros. sure have some serious folk blues running through their veins with the older brother Paul perhaps being the more sophisticated and complex of the two (as sophisticated as a Curreri can get). Really great show. Really great audience... kids really like the hash at Pitzer. Some things never change.