Last chance to party in the MEGADOME! This Saturday with Delmarva and Slouching Stars The Octopus Literary Salon will open its doors in the next few weeks at 2101 Webster in Oakland. They present the very last pop-up in their killer MEGADOME series this Saturday at Chabot Space & Science Center. The shows include great local bands with 70mm, Omnimax-style films playing overhead. Tamales, Tecates and Telescopes are always available. For this "grand finale blowout" music is provided by Delmarva and Slouching Stars! Delmarva are an instrumental band fronted by Mark Gordon (of the Titan Ups, "SF's Rocksteady Revivalists"). Slouching Stars are a true Bay Area super group whose members have played with [...]

By |January 27, 2015|Tags: , , |

Weyes Blood brings winter to San Francisco

New York City-based artist Natalie Mering is rolling through San Francisco tonight with her solo project Weyes Blood. Though she's been honing her own brand of psychedelic piano music since 2006, Mering captures the full spectrum of her cold, melodramatic sounds on her latest album The Innocents. Released on Mexican Summer at the end of 2014, the record takes its name from the 1961 horror film of the same name, evoking the Gothic, haunting spirit of the cinematic feature through experimental noise, cascading piano and sudden distortion. The resulting drone-folk style is best encapsulated in the single "Some Winters," which [...]

By |January 27, 2015|Tags: |

Twerps to release new album Range Anxiety, announce Bottom of the Hill show in March

Shortly after Twerps formed and premiered their self-titled debut album in 2011, they were already onstage at SXSW and CMJ and hitting tours with Mac DeMarco and Real Estate. Since then, they've been steadily producing more and more music, and will finally release their second full-length album Range Anxiety January 27 via Merge Records. The album's first single, the playful pop love song "Back to You", is as sunny as their home Melbourne and as innocent as their name would suggest. But that doesn't mean they've always sounded that way. Although the band has seen its fair share of lineup changes, they've embraced the change [...]

By |January 26, 2015|Tags: , |

Strange Hotel releases new music video for “Double Life”

Strange Hotel Strange Hotel, a rock band so cool they make the Strokes look like the cast of The Big Bang Theory, has just released a new video for their song "Double Life."  Showcasing their old-school attitude, the video is suitably no-frills and low-key, fit to let the music speak for itself with its soaring vocals, sultry groove and wicked guitar solo. Think of it as a preview of what their live show is like, albeit not nearly as gloriously raucous.  I can attest to that fact - my ears are still wringing from the Bottom of the [...]

By |January 23, 2015|Tags: |

Prince Rama play CULT Gallery’s first birthday this Saturday

According to their Instagram, Brooklyn-based post-apocalyptic pop duo Prince Rama has been hanging out in California for a few days now, and we can only imagine what kind of preparations they are making for their upcoming exhibition and show at CULT Gallery this Saturday.  The space on Mission Street is celebrating its first birthday with How To Live Forever, a series of installations and performances by sisters Taraka and Nimai Larson, the avant-garde psychedelic pair and Paw Tracks artists known for their ritualistic pop performance art. The show runs from its opening on Saturday night through February 14th, and will feature work based on [...]

By |January 23, 2015|Tags: |

Joel Gion & The Primary Colours round up SF psych favorites at The Independent

We're off to a killer start here in 2015, from the Soft White Sixties’s ongoing Brick & Mortar residency to Lee Gallagher and The Hallelujah’s celestial, family-studded epic of a record release last Saturday. We move forward this week with Joel Gion & The Primary Colours at The Independent on Thursday, January 22. Drenched in the liquid light art of White Light Prism, Gion and his backing band -- relatively new in the neo-psych world which Gion helped pioneer -- will use their familiar blend of 1960s rock and roll and post punk to move the Divisadero Street music house [...]

Bay Area bands in the NPR Tiny Desk Concert Contest

The deadline recently passed for entries into the Tiny Desk Contest, a contest run by NPR that will reward one lucky winner with an appearance on their famous video series, Tiny Desk Concerts, and a spot on Lagunitas’ Couchtrippin’ show in Austin. It probably won’t shock you to know that, when all was said and done, there were a pretty large number of applicants are from right here in our Bay Area backyard. While the pool is somewhat limited to more cerebral, folk-minded styles that resonate with the NPR crowd, the Bay Area contingent still exhibits an impressive range of [...]

By |January 20, 2015|Tags: |

Will Sprott releases Vortex Numbers on his new label

Photo: Shana Cleveland It's been over four years since Will Sprott has released new material, but he's back with the release of Vortex Numbers, out January 20 on his very own Hairdo Records. Sprott says he's recorded "about 21 songs" over the past few years, and Vortex Numbers contains the ten that he wanted to share with the world. He's shared a video for the track "Psychic Lady" off the album, confirming that Sprott's music is still simply as cool as it gets. Vortex Numbers is the first musical release on Sprott's Hairdo Records, but it isn't the first [...]

By |January 16, 2015|Tags: |

Berkeley’s POP ETC. release video for new single “Running In Circles”

Berkeley's POP ETC. seem to have spent a lifetime consuming popular music's nuances. They can funnel decades' worth of synthesizers and crushing melodic textures into a bright pastiche of a song, but still manage to make it sound like nothing you've ever heard before. Their newest track, "Running in Circles", recalls '80s grooves with spastic pizzicato, with vocalist Christopher Chu bellowing like he's mid-power ballad in a John Hughes film. That reaching for familiar aesthetics in their music, though, is a strategy they often employ — not just a novel pursuit for their newest release. "Pop music always elevates and celebrates the hook—the catchy bit that sticks [...]

By |January 16, 2015|Tags: |

The Tropics talk Noise Pop, “Take You Home”, and horns (that’s right—horns)

Indie popsters The Tropics have been one of the most buzzworthy local acts in recent months with the release of their brilliant Wind House EP last October. Riding the wave of momentum created by that release, the San Francisco-based quintet is back with an irresistible new single, "Take You Home", on Breakup Records, as well as a SF-centric video for the track. I recently chatted with guitarist Eric Silverman over email, discussing everything from the band's newly-announced Noise Pop gig opening for Cathedrals at The Independent (the show is already sold out), the new track and video, and their release [...]

By |January 15, 2015|Tags: |
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