Music

Heads Up: 8 must-see concerts this week

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When does cute become cloying? Because this newly viral video of a baby playing along to the Beatles with his dad is seriously tickling me pink -- it's pretty damn adorable -- but after watching it a dozen or so times, it’s left me longing for something noisy and gross, just to wash off the darlingness of it all.

And the best shows this week are something of demonstrative polar opposites as well. There’s sugary Australian pop act Lenka, and fellow Aussie post-punks Total Control, then global dream popsters Trails and Ways, and metal battlecruiser Slough Feg, Americana punks Parquet Courts, and the Sunset Island fest, known as the "electronic music picnic." They are all in the mix.

Here are your must-see Bay Area concerts this week/end: Read more »

Philip Glass at 75: an intoxicating series, live scores to 'La Belle et la Bête' and more

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Last June, legendary composer Philip Glass treated our fair city to a one-off collaborative performance with indie-folk visionary Joanna Newsom. Just two months ago, he made a joint appearance with Beach Boys collaborator and eccentric songsmith Van Dyke Parks, in NYC. Last weekend, Glass paid SF another visit with a career retrospective festival, featuring live productions of two original, highly influential film scores. Glass is no ordinary composer, and even at the age of 75, his prolificacy and flair for innovation challenge that of any working musician. Read more »

Live Shots: Chvrches at Mezzanine

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The night started with shrieks. Well, back up. It actually started sedate. Opener Still Corners had cancelled at the last minute, due to visa issues*,” so we knew it would be a bit of a wait before headliner Chvrches came to the stage at Mezzanine. In the meantime, we stood around commenting how nice it was that there was no one under 21.

The show had originally been scheduled at the Rickshaw Stop, but when it sold out quickly, it was moved to Mezzanine, and anyone under drinking age was issued a refund. This meant there wasn’t the early crush of teenagers permanently camped out at the front of the stage.** I know, I know, it’s not nice to gloat over someone else’s exclusion. Maybe I forget about being that age and not understanding how I wouldn’t get to see my newest musical obsession live, just because the venue was 21+. I remember now, though, because twenty minutes before start time the other side of the spectrum arrived: the banshees.*** Read more »

Here's your gentrification-eviction-displacement electro theme song. Let's dance.

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"Hey gurl, where you moving to? Moving to the East Bay, living life the broke way. SF keep your money. FUCK YOUR MONEY!"

In-our-face drag performer Persia has teamed up with phantasmic trio Daddies Plastik to create an ecstatic dance punk anthem for our insane SF economic times, "Google Google Apps Apps." It's really catchy! Gentrify me, gentrify me, gentrify my love.

And it all comes from personal experience.

Read more »

Treasure Island 2013 lineup is out! Animal Collective, James Blake, Little Dragon, Tricky, Cayucas, and...

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Hey look, it’s Animal Collective! Oh, and James Blake, Little Dragon, Tricky, Cayucas, Phantogram, Beck, and Deep Siver Diver, along with locals Antwon and Giraffage. Treasure Island 2013 (Oct. 19-20) is shaping up to be a pretty great festival season closer, heavy on the electronic.

Tickets are on sale this Fri/31 at 10am. Treasure Island Festival lays it all out here:

General admission tickets: Read more »

What we do is secret

New albums from locals: the Mantles, Rogue Wave, Shannon and the Clams. Plus, what's with this America's Cup Concert Series?

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emilysavage@sfbg.com

TOFU AND WHISKEY Bay Area garage pop quintet the Mantles will release Love Enough to Leave on Slumberland Records next month (June 18) and play the Rickshaw Stop a few short days before that (June 14). The breezy group formed in 2007, but sounds like it could just have easily been hanging out at Vesuvio in Jack Kerouac Alley or across the street at Specs Bar in 1968, grasping stiff drinks and talking politics and fashion with local drunks.Read more »

Video Premiere: The Trashies do the worm

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See video

The view from my studio apartment’s bay windows includes a clear view of my building’s garbage chute. Often times the chute gets clogged and the trash piles high for days. I think about it and freak out over how it will fester and potentially attract vermin. Obviously, I don’t like it when that happens, but I’ve thought to myself, “Man, that dude from Uzi Rash would really love it here.”

So what’s the Oakland frontperson (with an affinity for making his own refuse-themed jams) been up to since the Rash cleared up? Well, as this video post depicts, Max Nordile is literally writhing around in muck and he’s got some friends in the Trashies that have joined him. Read more »

Björk plays the part of stunning mad scientist at the Craneway Pavilion

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With purple lightning bolts of electricity jagging toward one another in a steel cage center-stage, powerful pipes that reverberated through the pavilion and rippled out onto the sea, and a fuzzy Snow Cone wig of every color -- cherry red, orange, lime green -- Björk seemed like the mad scientist of the natural world last night at the relatively intimate Craneway in Richmond, Calif.

She also thanked the audience often, 't-ank you, Bay Area, gggrrrratitude!" (she rolls her Rs beautifully) and offered up a 16-piece coven of sequined and hooded Icelandic choir princesses, so you can assume she's the benevolent type of creator. Read more »

A chance meeting with the Doors' Ray Manzarek, RIP

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Ray Manzarek, co-founder and keyboardist of the Doors, died today at 74. Complications from bile duct cancer.

As the master of the spooky-sounding and creepy organ first heard in rock and roll in "96 Tears" or "She's About A Mover," Manzarek was both the embellishment and the bottom for Venice, Calif.'s most famous band. They had no bass (live, on records they did). The bass was Ray's left hand -- according to Manzarek, every time they tried to add a bass, the sound became leaden and useless. And so, that oddly springy feel the Doors made real owed as much to Ray as it did their colorful frontman or their jazzy guitarist and drummer. Read more »

Heads Up: 7 must-see concerts this week

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Bjork is coming! She’ll bring Biophilia’s ambitiously in-the-round and touch screen app-filled show to Richmond, Calif. this week. Plus, the educational component of that tour will make its way to the Exploratorium via a handful of science and sound experiments.

The sparkly avant-pop star is the major music news this week in the Bay, however there also is the annual (and reliably well-curated) SF Popfest, plus a bunch of other shows you should be checking out as well, like Japanese doom masters Boris, Swedish indie popsters the Shout Out Louds, the gritty B-side soul goodness of the Detroit Cobras, and local rock'n'roller Mikal Cronin -- high on the release of a celebrated new solo album, MCII. Read more »