LEFT OF THE DIAL It's a question most musicians are all too familiar with. If you tell someone at a party that you're a working musician, that person is inevitably going to ask — after a few polite questions about your hardcore band/classical jazz quartet/street-corner performance art where you alternate reading Blake passages with playing the accordion — "So, you have a day job?"Read more »
LEFT OF THE DIAL Setting aside the darkly ear-wormy melodies, haunting vocals, and refreshingly crisp grunge-pop that goes into Everyone Is Dirty's sound, it's singer Sivan Gur-Arieh's violin — slicing sweetly above the chaos of a final chorus, adding a heightened sense of gothic romance to a bridge — that sets the Oakland art-rock quartet apart from the current fuzzy, grungey masses.
Good thing Gur-Arieh's come to peace with the fact that she plays it.Read more »
LEFT OF THE DIAL Is there any problem more thoroughly modern, more reflective of the way we currently measure the value of our experiences, more completely indicative of a charmed First-World life than that of FOMO?Read more »
LEFT OF THE DIAL To an '80s baby, at this point, calling Nickelodeon's The Adventures of Pete & Pete a cult favorite is a little like thinking your childhood love of The Labyrinth or The Neverending Story is somehow quirky or unique — it goes without saying that they're excellent, but we're gonna need a lot of Kool-Aid: These are some pretty big cults we're dealing with.Read more »
There's something to be said for recording four great, distinctive albums, and quitting while you're ahead. This live-fast/die-fast approach worked wonders for the Velvet Underground's legacy and influence, and one might say it served the Pixies' notoriously frenetic rock explorations equally well.Read more »
LEFT OF THE DIAL If there's one thing Allen Scott remembers from opening the Independent 10 years ago, it's the rush. Not the emotional high (though surely that was a factor too), but the literal rushing around that was necessary to open a state-of-the-art live concert space with a capacity of 500 "on a shoestring budget."Read more »
LEFT OF THE DIAL As legend has it, there was a time when you couldn't walk the streets of Berkeley without running into him. He accosted you from posters adorning bar bathroom doors; he lurked around corners, plastered to telephone poles. He was mischievous, sometimes foul-mouthed, usually up to no good, but he always meant well. He wanted you to rock out. He was Pyno Man, and he was everywhere.Read more »