Music

A queerness in Harlem, finely revived

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Visual alchemy, fabulous feminist story-telling, and something deemed “hyper-literate busking” abound at 2012’s Queer Rebels of the Harlem Renaissance fesitval, three nights of art and performance (Thu/28-Sat/30) by 21 LGBTQ African Americans.

Part of the 15th National Queer Arts Festival, Queer Rebels of the Harlem Renaissance continues the legacy of the droves of artists, performers, and activists who questioned stale societal standards in a myriad ways during the heyday of the New York City neighborhood's 1920s and 30s creative blossoming: from sensual lyrics of Bessie Smith to the pointed poetics of Langston Hughes, the artists of the Harlem Renaissance continue to testify to the assertion that social causes are rarely separate and constantly progressing.

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THEESatisfaction communicates its boldly cosmic agenda at the Independent

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Amid the reign of Kanye, it can be easy to overlook the humble beginnings of hip-hop: a populist genre designed to be executed with minimal resources. Seattle duo THEESatisfaction’s reverence for this history was on full display at the Independent last Friday night, as they “turned off the swag” to deliver a remarkably unadorned performance, in support of the acclaimed awE naturalE, released earlier this year. Two microphones and a MacBook were all Catherine Harris-White and Stasia Irons needed to communicate their boldly cosmic agenda. Read more »

Garage Days re-revisited

Musical mentors to J-Stalin and other post-hyphy Oakland acts, the Mekanix lure E-40 into The Chop Shop.

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MUSIC In 2003, at Moses Music in East Oakland, I stumbled across a CD labeled "Numskull of the Luniz Presents...Hittaz on tha Payroll, Ghetto Storm" (Hitta Records). I bought it and was blown away, not simply by the rappers — one of whom, Eddi Projex, has gone on to be a Bay hitmaker — but also by the cinematic expressiveness of the music, with its moody, minor-key atmospheres and rapid counterpunctual basslines, courtesy of the Mekanix: Dotrix 4000 and Kenny Tweed.Read more »

Out of the paincave

El-P finds a revelation within the destruction on Cancer 4 Cure

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arts@sfbg.com

MUSIC Apocalypse doesn't exactly identify what Brooklyn-born producer and rapper El-P conjures in his music. Sure, furtive sirens blare out almost immediately in his new record Cancer 4 Cure (Fat Possum). Synthetic melodies disfigure themselves while break beats rumble with the intensity of the Bomb Squad, all drowned out through a wash of distorted noise. The lyrics are just as unsettling too: an overpowering technological violence brought to bear on soft human bodies, whose voices are fractured, rendered nearly schizophrenic.Read more »

Video premiere: Tim Carr is 3-D in space (and catchy, too)

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Fans of local hottie chanteur Tim Carr, rejoice -- the new video for "Give Me the Light" offers emo aliens, a nice Placebo-esque rave-up, and the hunky Mr. Carr himself in a bathrobe. (Also: Cheerios?) Funky glasses and/or visual cortex creativity required, but you can view in earthly 2-D as well.

Scandinavian prudishness surprises Extra Action Marching Band

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By Lasse Lundberg Andreasen
Photos by Pelle Rink

The young festival worker only offers one piece of advice: “Do not enter their hotel room. They are wack. They will flip you upside down and snort coke from your ass. Also, they might be gay”. Read more »

Treasure Island Music Fest lineup is out: xx, M83, Public Enemy, Best Coast

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It's not 'till October, but the Treasure Island Music Festival lineup was let loose on the web today -- and tickets go on sale this week. The popular San Francisco fest, created and curated by Noise Pop, this year includes a buzzy, bloggy mix of EDM and chillwave, rock'n'roll and pop.

As opposed to previous years, the split two day lineups (Saturday and Sunday) seem less rigidly defined by genre. Headliners include Girl Talk, xx, the Presets, M83, Porter Robinson, and Gossip. There are some locals in there as well – Tycho, Dirty Ghosts, K. Flay, Imperial Teen, and the like.

See the current list below (undoubtedly, others will be added down the line). Read more »

Heads Up: 7 must-see concerts this week

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There must be something about living in California that makes people want to pick up an instrument and strum, pluck, or smash. Be it surf-infused rock'n'rollers in San Diego dedicated to the Church of John Swami Reis (Mrs. Magician), illustrious weirdo harpists (Nevada City, Calif. born Joanna Newsom), San Francisco psych poppers (Magic Trick) or sticky LA streets punks (the Shrine), the sounds of the state continue to boil. Read more »

Telegenic Band Check: Mr. Kind

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Mr. Kind's Brian Bergeron and Kyle Kelly-Yahner rocked out on a perfect summer afternoon in an apartment somewhere in the Mission. Catch their EP release at Hotel Utah on July 27.

Mic Check: Everyone is listening at Sacred Grounds

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“It’s about writing. We should start the interview with that.” Todd Tholke leans forward across the greasy café table. “The whole reason I came all the way over here today to meet with you is to tell you about this thing that we do that has to do with free speech.”

Tholke emcees open mics, which is something he’s been doing in San Francisco for over 15 years to showcase the works of local artists in a free venue. At present, Tholke is hosting acoustic nights every Thursday at Sacred Grounds Café, which lies north of the Panhandle. Read more »