Music

Cursive gets candid during Noise Pop

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Tears, booze, sex, pain, martyrdom, regret. Against my better judgment, I was singing along with the band. I was singing carefully, with my eyes closed and likely a smile creeping up in the corners of my mouth. I couldn't help it, it came from within, as much as that particular act generally annoys me in packed settings. The swell of angular guitar and thundering drums pulled back mostly leaving higher octave vocals from a scale that slides to and fro: "Your tears are only alibis/To prove you still feel/You only feel sorry for yourself/Well get on that cross/That's all you're good for." Read more »

Whither indie?

As Noise Pop turns 20, tracing sound from Overwhelming Colorfast to Young Prisms

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MUSIC How does one trace the warp and woof of Bay Area indie rock's silky, sick, multihued tapestry — with ticket stubs to long-ago shows, holey concert T's, or grainy snapshots of sweat-swathed guitar players, red eyes gleaming in a haze of smoke machine emissions? Perhaps one way is to chart SF indie's course from the first Noise Pop to the latest 20th anniversary edition, teasing out the tenuous connections between the first fest's headliner Overwhelming Colorfast, reunited this year, and newish local poobah Young Prisms.Read more »

Spanning time with the Flaming Lips

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I ran into a temporal anomaly while driving. My first warning sign was the police cruiser with one headlight flashing its sirens behind me. Wrong place at the wrong time? Well, I was getting pulled over in Sebastopol on the way to Richmond from SF, but when the cop told me I was doing 78 in a 55, it suggested one thing —speeding. Read more »

Snap Sounds: Young Magic

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YOUNG MAGIC
MELT

(CARPARK)

Hearing a band being described as "tribal electronic" gives me a headache, but Young Magic actually pulls it off on its debut full-length, Melt. This New York-via-Australia trio works irregular drum machine beats, swirling synths, and haunting vocals into dark, psychedelic pop songs. The sluggish, heavily reverbed "Night In The Ocean" is sensual and explosive. With its fluttering synths and repeated "I found love with you" vocals, "Jam Karet" is catchy and almost chant-like. "The Dancer" opens with a few creepy music box notes, and features what sounds like a shrieking tropical bird. Read more »

Localized Appreesh: Churches

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Localized Appreesh is our weekly thank-you column to the musicians that make the Bay. To be considered, contact emilysavage@sfbg.com.
 
There's a whole lot of religious imagery going on within new local guitar-and-drums superduo Churches. Most vivid, beyond the obvious, is the guilty, desperate strain in mesmerizing first single, “Save Me,” and its jittery remixes. The track and remixes (available on Bandcamp) are both pleading and sensual, evoking the classic good/evil ecstasy of sacred customs. Read more »

San Francisco honors the memory of Warren Hellman with a free daytime concert

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San Francisco will honor the memory of philanthropist Warren Hellman this weekend with a fittingly free, live bluegrass showcase. The event includes performances by: Poor Man's Whiskey, John Doe, Kevin Welch, Kieran Kane & Fats Kaplin, Dry Branch Fire Squad, Steve Earle, Buddy Miller, The Wronglers (Hellman's old band) with Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Gillian Welch, Boz Scaggs, Old Crow Medicine Show, Robert Earl Keen, Emmylou Harris with special guest The Go to Hell Man Clan.  Read more »

Blues guitarist Gary Clark Jr. solos as long as he damn well pleases

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“Well you gonna know my name, by the end of the night,” Gary Clark Jr. sings during his take off Jimmy Reed’s blues classic, “Bright Lights, Big City.” The Animals, Rolling Stones, Clapton, Dylan –  many have had their take on it, but Clark flipped the tale of urban intoxication, giving it extra bravado and, with a notable performance at the Crossroads Guitar Festival 2010 and resulting Warner Bros record contract, turned it into an announcement of his own impending stardom (with risks involved). Read more »

Everlasting Noise

Noise Pop 2012: It's 20 years for the massive music and film fest -- tender memories with Archers of Loaf, Cursive, Thao, and more

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Symmetry

Noise Pop 2012: Is Glass Candy producer Johnny Jewel's recent project his allegedly scrapped Drive score?

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arts@sfbg.com

NOISE POP It's been a few months since I've seen Nicolas Winding Refn's Drive, and while many have dedicated countless hours selflessly contributing to the Ryan Gosling meme, which continues to grow and mutate like an uncontained bacterial infection, I'm still utterly and helplessly seduced by the score.Read more »

All the noise

Noise Pop 2012: Die Antwoord, Matthew Dear, Veronica Falls, and more must-sees at this year's huge music and film fest

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