Does it have to be a bloodbath?

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By Tim Redmond

Already, I'm hearing whistpers from both sides of the Leno-Migden contest, and already, they're getting nasty. Mark Leno told me this week that he will run an upbeat campaign, and that any negative attacks on Midgen "won't come from me." I suspect I will hear the same from Migden. But it's common in campaigns for elected officials to try to take the high road and let others -- their allies and suppoerters -- do the dirty work. Read more »

NOISE: Smoother sailing for Roky?

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Just in time to catch the afterglow of Roky Erickson's awesome performance at Great American Music Hall last night: good news. According to Erickson's publicists, the garage-punk legend has had his legal rights fully restored as of Feb. 23.

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Roky's camp writes: "In June 2001, Roky Erickson’s youngest brother, former Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra principal tubaist Sumner Erickson, was appointed Roky's legal guardian. Read more »

NOISE: Noise pop-a-go-go-going! Roky, Macro, Pop, pop, pop...

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Wow, can't stop the Noise Pop show-going. Though when one finds the time to report on it or discuss the hairdo's seen or the amount of cheap beer quaffed - who knows?

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First off, Roky Erickson totally freakin' kicked ass last night, March 1. Solid band, great sound, punchy drumming, great gods of distortion smiling down. You know, the works. Read more »

Girls Rule

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IMG_0375.JPGOooh, how I love me some rockin' women. And last night seemed to be chock full of 'em. (The men weren't half bad either...)IMG_0364.JPG

First was Noise Pop Happy Hour at the Parkside (are we seeing a theme here?) featuring the mesmerizing Loquat. Read more »

NOISE: Yum, indie branding means...

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Guardian staffer Joe Pennant was out and about for Noise Pop and ran smack into some free mochi ice cream at Bottom of the Hill - courtesy of the Ice Cream Man.

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Who are these kind, mysterious strangers giving away sweets at all manner of shows? Marketing, promotions, branding, and advertising, naturally! Read more »

Leno announces

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By Steven T. Jones
Invoking the spirit of George Moscone and Harvey Milk "so that we may be worthy of their powerful legacy," Assembly member Mark Leno today announced his candidacy for the Senate seat now held by Carole Migden, setting off a high-profile fight between the two for the Democratic Party nomination next year. "Welcome to democracy in action. Read more »

An evening of esoteric indie rock

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So there’s this guy named Tommy Lee. Maybe you’ve heard of him? Played drums in a little-known rock band? Married some blonde in a red bathing suit? Starred in a salacious home video? Well, apparently this obscure musician is still making his art in the small, private, cult-following-type venues he’s become accustomed to (like Oakland’s Oracle Arena, on two different reality shows, and in a book he’s co-writing, among about a dozen other gigs). Read more »

Hella lot of pictures ... (but not of Hella)

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So I couldn't get tickets to last night's Hella show (with Pop Levi, Macromantics, Tartufi) at Bottom of the Hill (Yes, I tried to get 'em like a civilian. That'll teach me not to use my press privilege...) Which meant that after the Noise Pop Happy Hour at Thee Parkside (where I enjoyed some lovely little lox-and-cream-cheese sammiches), I managed only to go out drinking instead of seeing live music. But that doesn't mean I've nothing to post here. Oh, no. Read more »

Culture war at the Village Voice

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By Tim Redmond

Good article in the Boston Phoenix on the fallout from the New Times-Village Voice merger. The basic point that writer Adam Reilly makes:

The core of the old New Times chain was Southwestern and Southern. And those regions of the country have a different political culture — more socially conservative, more reflexively anti-government — than coastal markets like Los Angeles and New York, or progressive Midwestern enclaves like the Twin Cities. Read more »

Tourk for mayor

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By Steven T. Jones
After an uncomfortable exchange with Mayor Gavin Newsom at the Project Homeless Connect event earlier in the day, Alex Tourk was out with friends (including a long list of prominent people, many still in Newsom's camp) at Finnegan's Wake last night celebrating his birthday and I happened to run into him. Read more »