Sonny and the Sunsets - Photo by Alice Shaw

Download: Live This Month: February 2015 (Podcast #356)

In Live This Month, we sample some of the great local and out-of-town bands performing in the coming month in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Two Gallants handily win the award for the hardest-working band in the Bay Area this month. With a new album, We Are Undone, garnering great reviews, the local duo kicks off a ton of touring in North America and Europe over the next four months with three nights of back-to-back local shows.

Two Gallants aren’t the only locals with a new record, though. This month’s podcast kicks off with a new song from the always-reliable Sonny & The Sunsets. We’ve also included a new one from local post-rockers The Union Trade, and new heavy-psych tracks from Mondo Drag and Planes of Satori.

February also means the return of the Noise Pop Festival at the end of the month. Now in its twenty-third (!) year, the 2015 fest unites over a hundred local and touring bands for a whole lot of exciting shows in local venues. We’ve included four Noise Pop bands in this mix — including a psychy mini-set featuring Jessica Pratt, The Shivas, and Six Organs of Admittance — but countless others could have also made the cut. Consider that a testament to the festival’s continued vitality in its third decade.

But you don’t need to wait until Noise Pop to catch some excellent touring bands, including rare local appearances by Montreal’s TOPS and Swedish band The Mary Onettes. Both groups offer engaging variations on dream pop; TOPS explores more spartan, insular sounds, while The Mary Onettes deliver big, dense anthems.

Enjoy the podcast and then go see some concerts!

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About the bands:

Sonny & The Sunsets – “Cheap Extensions”
Playing The Chapel on February 21 with Gap Dream and Colleen Green

TOPS – “Outside”
Coming to the Brick & Mortar Music Hall with Dinner and Kid Trails on February 23

Jack Name – “Running After Ganymede”
Opening for Ariel Pink at Bimbo’s on February 7

Planes of Satori – “Gnostic Boogie”
Performing at Thee Parkside on February 7; also appearing: Ya Ho Wa 1313 and Cash Pony

Two Gallants – “We Are Undone”
Performing three local shows this month: at Leo’s on February 5, The Chapel on February 6, and the Great American Music Hall on February 7

EDJ – “Lose It All, All The Time”
Local artists Kacey Johansing and Farallons open for EDJ at The Chapel on February 18

Goodnight, Texas – “Button Your Collar”
Performing with Wild Child and Desert Noises on February 19 at the Great American Music Hall

Jessica Pratt – “Back, Baby”
Co-headlining The Chapel with Kevin Morby on February 25; Carroll and Two Sheds kick off the show

The Shivas – “Stalking Legs”
On February 28, playing with Cherry Glazerr, Dirt Dress and Rich Girls at Bottom of the Hill

Six Organs of Admittance – “Wax Chance”
Headlining Bottom of the Hill on February 26; Elisa Ambrogio, Silo Homes, and Donovan Quinn support

The Union Trade – “Murmurations”
Celebrating the band’s album release at the Rickshaw Stop on February 4, with Sunrunners and One Hundred Percent

The Mary Onettes – “Silence Is A Gun”
Coming to the Rickshaw Stop on February 20; locals Li Xi and Tiaras complete the bill

Springtime Carnivore – “Sun Went Black”
Supporting The Dodos at the Great American Music Hall on February 11

Mondo Drag – “Crystal Visions Open Eyes”
Releasing the band’s self-titled album at Leo’s on February 12, with fellow locals Carlton Melton and Queen Crescent

Nude Beach – “Yesterday”
The Brooklyn band’s February 26 Rickshaw Stop show also includes locals Tony Molina, Cold Beat and The Younger Lovers