Album Premiere: Unconditional Arms, ‘Formation’

Jeff Wright of Unconditional Arms So I think it's safe to say we're all in a transition period, right? Both as individuals and as a society? Yeahhhh. That's why the timing for the release of Formation, the new album from Unconditional Arms, could not be more apropos. The Oakland post-rock group has been in a constant state of transition since its inception ten years ago. And, IMHO, post-rock is the perfect music for self-isolation anyways — it's almost scientifically engineered for deep introspection and emotional catharsis (I don't want to count the times I've driven around in the [...]

Video Premiere: Schlee, “Run Run Baby”

Look around you. Doesn't it feel like you're living in a dream world right now? Can you even remember what life was like before this? My advice: go with it. Fall down the rabbit hole. And while you're down there, bump the new single from North Bay singer/songwriter Schlee's upcoming LP Tears. Entitled "Run Run Baby," the track is a sparsely-textured slice of dream-pop with tinges of Americana and electro wave with '80s. The psychedelic video will make you feel like you're walking on a long stretch of desert highway- parched, thirsty, broken down car — until Schlee's ethereal voice [...]

By |March 20, 2020|Tags: , |

Best Of 2019: Derek’s favorite Wine Country releases

Pictured: The author. Look, from an artist's perspective, I get why y'all don't come up here all the time. Having grown up here, I'll admit that Sonoma County is pretty much just wine and expensive road bikes. And weed. Like, tons of weed. BUT. There are also musicians up here doing cool stuff! I swear. Check it — here's a bunch of cool musicians in no particular order whatsoever who dropped hot records in 2019. Eki Shola, Drift Did you know Eki Shola used to be a doctor? Makes perfect sense, since her songs and voice tap directly into the [...]

John Courage goes unplugged for “Afraid to Fall”

Songwriter John Courage returns to his roots as an acoustic troubadour with his first acoustic-centric release in almost 10 years. All sounds were recorded and performed by the towering Santa Rosa rocker himself at his analog-based home studio. Check out the video for his new single "Afraid to Fall" below. If you find yourself north of the bridge this weekend, check out his show at the Shady Oak Barrel House in Santa Rosa. John Courage (acoustic single release) and Freddy Parish (Tucson, AZ) Shady Oak Barrel House September 27, 2019 7pm, free show!

By |September 5, 2019|Tags: |

Album Premiere: Slugger head for home on ‘Let The Good Times Rot’

Slugger from left to right: Robert McLean, Hezekiah Donaghy, Alex Vargas, Josiah Donaghy It’s a muggy late-summer evening in south Santa Rosa. As the four members of Slugger dutifully distribute a pack of Henhouse IPA in front of their new rehearsal space, the sonic rumblings of another band bleed out of the building and into the parking lot. Up until six months ago, the sole rehearsal spot for the band was a 15' x 15' garage in the backyard of the members’ house, so they are still visually adjusting to rehearsing in a “conventional” studio setting. Over the years, that [...]

By |August 21, 2019|Tags: |

Last call with Nothington at Bottom of the Hill

Left to right: Chris Matulich, Ryan Donovan, Jay Northington Walking his new puppy through Alamo Square on a clear SF morning, Chris Matulich seems content with the prospect of taking his foot off the gas for awhile. "When we started, there was nothing I wanted to do more than escape my life at home and go on tour," reflects the singer/guitarist of Nothington. Matulich and co-vocalist/guitarist Jay Northington have been the core of the San Francisco punk band since their inception in 2006. The band made a name for themselves writing melodic punk anthems with gritty, blue-collar craftsmanship. With [...]

Video Premiere: The Drought Cult, “No Beliefs”

The Drought Cult from left to right: Echo, Ford, Overn Things start getting spooky the deeper you get into the North Bay Area. As you exit 101 and make your way into West Sonoma County, sprawling vineyards give away to dense forests of old growth redwoods, misty valleys, and gorging rivers. Needless to say this lush netherworld cultivates some sick music. Hailing from this area is the Drought Cult , who have been repping the heavier, darker aspects of Wine Country since their inception almost four years ago. The trio — featuring guitarist/vocalist Francesco Echo, bassist Jef Overn and drummer Dan Ford [...]

BRONCHO at Slim’s

(photo: Pooneh Ghana) If you need something to take the edge off of your post-Valentine's Day comedown, we recommend seeing BRONCHO perform at Slim's this Friday. The Oklahoma indie act is making a stop in the Bay in support of their new album Bad Behavior, released in October via Park the Van Records. And like the title suggests, the irresistibly savory art-pop quartet focuses their glossy eyes on a social landscape of people behaving...well, badly. “It’s a reflection of the current world: everybody’s been acting badly over the last few years so we made a record about it,” vocalist Ryan Lindsey explains. “Through [...]

By |February 13, 2019|Tags: |

Happy Birthday, ‘Dookie’

On this day, a quarter century ago, Bay Area punk trio Green Day dropped their major-label debut Dookie on an unsuspecting generation like it wasn't even a thing. They didn't even care. They called it Dookie for crying out loud. Needless to say, this record ended up having notable influence on the next wave of musicians to follow. And this weekend 924 Gilman Street in Berkeley will be host to a celebration of the landmark record's 25th birthday. 15 bands Bay Area bands each covering one of the 15 songs off the seminal record. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i8dh9gDzmz8 And yes, it has been [...]

By |February 1, 2019|Tags: |

Warbly Jets swing through Bottom of the Hill

If you have played the new Spider-Man video game for PS4, then you'll probably recognize the game's intro song "Alive", written and performed by Warbly Jets. (I have not played the game, but I have heard it rocks.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hDVHvirhpKk And just like the friendly neighborhood web-slinger, Warbly Jets also came out the gates 0f 2019 swinging. The LA rockers plan to make tracks across the United States and Canada for the next eight weeks in support of their new EP Propaganda , which dropped last week on Rebel Union Recordings. "On this new collection of songs, we made an effort to set no [...]

By |January 9, 2019|Tags: |
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