Music

Kids in America

French Cassettes unspool sunny tales of "Gold Youth." Plus: Danish Renaissance woman Oh Land and new books by East Bay punk goofballs Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits

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emilysavage@sfbg.com

TOFU AND WHISKEY "Us Kids," the first single off French Cassettes' debut full-length Gold Youth (self-released), is a sunny, upbeat slice of San Francisco life. It's unadulterated indie pop exuberance, the shiny glee of mischievous youth in a extraordinary city under a thick layer of fog.Read more »

Heads Up: 7 must-see concerts this week

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Well lookie here -- seems like SF really is for lovers. We’ve got hoards of young folks intermingling on OkCupid, Grindr, and Tindr. And yes, the penultimate event: Kimye got engaged at AT&T Park last night. Kanye West rented out the whole park to propose to Kim K., which seems...lavish and kinda lonely? Although, I hear there was a 50-piece orchestra, so those people he hired were there at least.

Anyway, that sprinkly-gooey-sweet stuff (ahem, love) extends to the bands you should be checking this week: tender Nanna Øland Fabricius (otherwise known as Oh Land), boy-girl duo Kisses, balmy Warm Soda, and um, Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children MacNuggits. Read more »

Live Shots: Treasure Island Music Festival 2013

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Maybe people just don’t know how to party anymore, but I didn’t come across vomit once at the Treasure Island Music Festival. The crowd’s vibe was more or less well-behaved all weekend -- pretty chill considering how many people were clustered on the island for the fests’ seventh successful installment.

The organizers rely on big names, the unique setting, a variety of vendors, and plenty of distracting flash (including the nearly iconic 60-foot Ferris wheel you can ride at $5 a pop) in order to keep this thing a destination.  Read more »

Live Shots: The Dodos at Great American Music Hall

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All photos by Charles Russo

Fans of the Dodos flocked to the Great American Music Hall on Wednesday night, to catch the band’s final performance of its latest tour. It was a glorious homecoming played out before an adoring Bay Area crowd as Meric Long and company turned out a dynamic set that seamlessly alternated between quietly beautiful and downright fierce. Read more »

Live Shots: Har Mar Superstar at Bottom of the Hill

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Have you ever heard of a snowball? (Not the frozen thing, the sugary treat, or some kind of sex act). I’m talking about the totally wholesome retro swing dance thing in which eager dancers surround a couple or two on the floor. The band yells out “snowball!” and the dancers separate and grab someone else from the outer circle. “Snowball!” again and the circle widens, leading eventually to concentric circles of revelers swishing and swirling to live music.

Last night at Bottom of the Hill, Har Mar Superstar -- the Minnesota-bred soulful R&B and pop singer -- led the eager Tuesday night crowd in a rapidly devolving snowball. On first mention he yelled out, “It’s called a snowball! Go roller skating once 25 years ago!” And then continued to nudge the audience to keep finding new partners: “snowball!” “Snowball again!” Read more »

They came, they saw, they burned: scenes from the 2013 Dirtbag Challenge

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This is a follow-up to Keep Choppin'. You probably wanna check that (and this blog post) out first.

The go-to joke is that Alex "Koshka" Verbitsky claimed the Dirtbag Challenge — held Sun/13 at the end of Quesada Ave. — for Moldova. His 1969 CB 450 build took home not only the Coolest Bike title as voted by the fellow builders, but also the People's Choice Award. His build was inspired by old-fashioned board-track racers, taking chopping back to its roots in the 1910s and '20s.

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Heads Up: 7 must-see concerts this week

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Well the biggest music news in the city this weekend (or just outside its technical geographic mainland limits) is likely the annual Treasure Island Music Festival. But beyond that, there’s Goblin’s first ever SF show — for fans of Italian horror — along with the Dodos’ glorious return, Har Mar Superstar, Clairy Brown & the Bangin’ Rackettes, GWAR, and more. Read more »

The procrastinator’s Treasure Island Music Festival to-do list

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From snatching that perfect pair of tolerably uncomfortable shoes to sourcing stamina-inducing party favors, pre-music festival preparations are key.

Unfortunately I’m a procrastinator to the highest degree  — a gal who thrives on the thrill of a deadline and thereby ends up highly caffeinated on Saturday morning, buzzing between projects: weaving flower crowns with foliage from the backyard, trying on all my bras in search of the one that will best cozy my flask, baking sugary snacks that minimize long line-induced irritation, taking shots, doing lunges, and yelping with excitement.

I am also a big fan of the to-do list. And since the Treasure Island Music Festival is a personal favorite fully laced with woozy, mushy memories, I’m getting a few-day head start on this year’s to-do list to make sure the fest goes swimmingly. (Treasure Island Music Festival takes place this Sat/19-Sun/20. www.treasureislandfestival.com.)

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Thee Oh Sees, OBN III's, and more shake up the Chapel

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Once (three years ago) I broke my wrist at a Thee Oh Sees show, and despite the gnawing pain from my misshapen wrist, I stayed to watch the rest of the set.

You see, you just don’t leave a Thee Oh Sees show early. It is a band you experience, because it’s not that often that you get the chance to see a band that enjoys what it's doing quite so much, and may just want to pull you into the hectic fun.

My most recent encounter with Thee Oh Sees was last Thursday at the Chapel; the band was kicking off its sold-out, three-night residency with spooky electronic act Fryborg, proto-punk worshippers OBN III's and precise psych-rock band the Blind Shake. Read more »

Heads Up: 6 must-see concerts this week

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Have you recovered from Hardly Strictly Bluegrass/the Castro Street Fair yet? Can you believe how hot and sticky San Francisco was last weekend? Do you need more salted caramel liquid nitrogen ice cream? These are all rhetorical questions. It’s time to move on, because this week Fuck Buttons are in town, as are the Babies, King Khan and the Shrines, rapper Le1f (at a arcade themed dance party, no less), and Andrew W.K. singing classic Ramones songs with drummer Marky Ramone.  Read more »