Localized Appreesh is our weekly thank-you column to the musicians that make the Bay. To be considered, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gypsy punk, that wild pluck-pluck-pluck of flamenco guitar, that bombastic percussion and brass, it all makes for a rather frenetic if sultry affair when bands such as Gogol Bordello do it well. And in our midst, there lives a gifted bunch of musicians – pulled together to form Diego's Umbrella – that does it well too.
If you live in the Bay Area, you likely already know San Francisco's Diego's Umbrella. Perhaps you caught it at Outside Lands last year? Or you've heard any of its three peppy previous LPs? If not, here's a chance to bone up. If so, there's something new for you too.
The band's latest, Proper Cowboy – said to be a “futuristic spaghetti western album” – drops today. The dance-worthy record, created in collaboration with San Francisco producers the Rondo Brothers, employs the frenzied Eastern European-influenced flamenco guitar and fiddle, along with analog synth and “an army of tubas” to create a mesmerizing landscape of sound, with images of twirling dancers in flowing red skirts and pirates with long swords held between their teeth spinning through the cliched mind.
The band plays a totally free record release show at New Parish this week. Get to know it here first:
Year and location of origin: Tyson and Vaughn have played music together in San Francisco since 2001, but the band as people now know it has been around since 2007.
Band name origin: From our friend Phil Burnett's tattoo on his arm of Diego Rivera holding an umbrella.
Band motto: Let's do this, people!
Description of sound in 10 words or less: Gypsy Rock.
Instrumentation: Vox/flamenco guitar, vox/electric guitar/percussion, electric guitar, violin/omnichord, bass, drums.
Most recent release: Proper Cowboy, released July 2012.
Best part about life as a Bay Area band: The best part about being an SF band is the passion and support from our incredible hometown fans. And we can't imagine living anywhere else.
Worst part about life as a Bay Area band: Trying to find parking for our van/trailer.
First album ever purchased: In Effect Mode, by Al B Sure.
Most recent album purchased/downloaded: Fiona Apple's latest.
Favorite local eatery and dish: I've recently grown quite fond of the ahi tacos at The Bell Tower, and the tea leaf salad at Mandalay is an all time favorite.