Okay, so maybe I'm a little biased because how often does a music video shoot take place in yours truly's little podunk hometown of Albany, California -- which is where the dollar-beer-covered racetrack glory that is Golden Gate Fields technically lies, friends, not Berkeley -- but this new Atmosphere video for the song "Kanye West," which the hip-hop duo premiered today on Noisey, does feel a little like a "spot the East Bay shooting location" rendition of Wh Read more »
Fun fact: I'm bad at festivals. It's not that I don't enjoy them, per se: there's live music, the outdoors, fried food, great people-watching.
It's just that -- well, okay, I lied, I usually don't enjoy them. I'm not 22 anymore. I don't like waiting in long lines for disgusting Port-a-Potties. The sound is often unpreventably terrible. Trying to see all the bands you really care about becomes a headache-inducing feat of scheduling Sudoku. And the people-watching, while entertaining, often devolves into being so annoyed at/dismayed by the people around me that I'm too distracted to enjoy the music. Read more »
San Francisco songwriter Dylan Shearer has been kicking around the Bay Area since 2005, but something in his voice sounds like he just arrived here in a time machine from London in 1965. Like a less-buoyant Ray Davies (or a less-suicidal Nick Drake?) there's an impressive authentic, cozily British gloom to the California-born singer's work.Read more »
LEFT OF THE DIAL It's a question most musicians are all too familiar with. If you tell someone at a party that you're a working musician, that person is inevitably going to ask — after a few polite questions about your hardcore band/classical jazz quartet/street-corner performance art where you alternate reading Blake passages with playing the accordion — "So, you have a day job?"Read more »
Oh, Merrill Garbus. Remember the days when the endearingly weird, weirdly endearing, predictably unpredictable tUnE-yArDs felt like an open Oakland secret, an East Bay girl (by way of the East Coast) who slowly but surely started to outgrow us?Read more »
If the music industry gave out awards for patience or persistence, Bevan Herbekian would have a healthy handful of trophies to his name. The multi-instrumentalist has lent his songwriting and frontman skills to everything from loose punk bands to a highly orchestrated indie pop quartet over the course of the past decade and a half, in addition to playing bass on other people's songs -- at the moment, he's part of fellow Berkeleyite M. Read more »
Remember when we told you about Flaming Lips frontman Wayne Coyne's East Coast-only "Record Store tour," during which he was selling a signed, limited-edition, 12-inch, 20th anniversary reissue of the band's deliciously scruffy debut EP, packaged with a life-sized, anatomically correct, "hand-crafted, custom-made chocolate skull"? And the skull also contains a special gold coin that gains the bearer entry to any Flaming Lips show in the world? Of course you do. Read more »
LEFT OF THE DIAL Setting aside the darkly ear-wormy melodies, haunting vocals, and refreshingly crisp grunge-pop that goes into Everyone Is Dirty's sound, it's singer Sivan Gur-Arieh's violin — slicing sweetly above the chaos of a final chorus, adding a heightened sense of gothic romance to a bridge — that sets the Oakland art-rock quartet apart from the current fuzzy, grungey masses.
Good thing Gur-Arieh's come to peace with the fact that she plays it.Read more »