Exclusive Premiere: Before the Brave release LP, ‘Better Country’

Photo: Tyler Hansen Photography After the release of their EP, Great Spirit, three marriages, five moves, and a whole lot of life lived, Before the Brave is back on the scene to gift San Francisco with their first LP, Better Country. As I made a my way to 6th and Market to talk music with three of the five members, I happened upon a seemingly separate occurrence — an older man on the ground in a panic, fending off a group of young men threatening to use his cane to show him how to keep his mouth shut. I stopped for [...]

By |October 20, 2016|Tags: |

Behind the Music: How local musicians are paying the bills (part five)

The road may be narrow, but with purpose-driven passion, discomfort in mediocrity, and honing in on what makes you you, it is possible to discover. The road I speak of, of course, is the widely missed, yet highly sought alternative path that leads to deep-found satisfaction in both work and play. Not fame, not the Benjamins (though those may be a natural byproduct), but contentment. I am convinced, after speaking to these musicians, that one truly can simultaneously love one's work and craft. And further, they can live in symbiosis, fueling and inspiring the other. As I continue my quest to find [...]

Review and photos: José González and yMusic The Fox Theatre

José González with yMusic (photo: Jess Luoma) As concert goers took their seats (yes, seats) at the Fox Theatre last Sunday, there was a growing sense of anticipation for the rare collaborative performance featuring yMusic and José González.  We found our way to the orchestra section, and settled in for the semi-formal affair.  Come join as we walk through the evening together, from the first note from yMusic to José González's encore performance. Seven seats spread across the stage, and when the stage lights came up, the six instrumentalists of yMusic came forward and began to play.  The sextet brought chamber music [...]

By |March 17, 2016|Tags: , |

Behind the Music: How Local Musicians are Paying the Bills (Part Four)

As I continue to morph into a fly upon the wall of the various workplaces of local musicians for this ongoing series, a surprising observation has surfaced — passion has taken the place of grumbling, joy has taken the place of monotony, and a what is done off the stage only fuels what is done on the stage. Hanging with these musicians has been the highlight of my week. If you like local markets, you'll be happy to read on about these two local artists. Taylor Martinez: Not Dracula // Grocer at Haight Street Market 1. In what way does your job inspire [...]

Foxtails Brigade releases dynamic single, “Nun But The Lost”

Ever since my happenstance encounter with Oakland's Foxtails Brigade at Awaken Café a few months ago, I have been a big fan. Today the unconventional indie-pop band releases their second single, "Nun But The Lost" off their upcoming self-titled LP, set to release April via OIM Records (U.S.) and Rallye Label (Japan). Guitarist and keyboardist Anton Patzner (Judgement Day, Bright Eyes) commented on the dynamic single and said, "When [lead singer] Laura first played me her guitar part for 'Nun But The Lost' I knew we were in for a challenge. The song is totally crazy and changes keys 15 times; [...]

Noise Pop: Cave Singers at the Chapel

Cave Singers (photo: Ian Young) Dead car. Forced converse regarding new lazy foodie apps. Ambulance called for a biker's wheel caught in the trolley tracks. Lyft driver proclaiming Ed Lee's money-sucking toad-nature and disdain for Valencia Street. Ah yes, you know it's going to be a good show when all these things happen on the way — spawning a hungry soul with an appetite for rock. And beer. Noise Pop accrued an awesome and eclectic lineup for last Friday's show at the Chapel. Reviews from opener to headliner: Jacob Golden: The indie singer/songwriter left his folk-filled heart on the stage one '60s-style croon at [...]

Behind the Music: How Local Musicians are Paying the Bills (Part Three)

As this series continues, I have found that though they're ascending post late night performance and punching the clock on the daily, your favorite local artists actually love their day jobs. Further, they're inspired by them. In this round of interviews, I had a blast absorbing the passion that these three all have for their day jobs-- a passion that underscores and overflows into their theatrical sounds. I asked these three quirky local artists the same five questions to find out a little more about what they're up to during the day. Patrick Dale Smith: Battlehooch // Attendant at Musée Mécanique 1. In what way does [...]

By |January 30, 2016|Tags: , |

Preview: Quintessence–Combining the Arts

When music hits us, it affects virtually every part of our brain-- stimulating the frontal lobe all the way back to the cerebellum and everything in between. Our brains are musical, and it’s no wonder that translates to our bodies as well.  When we listen, we move. Or if you are, say, within the confines of the Muni or your local Safeway, you imagine movement. Or a reel, fictional or real, plays in your mind. Choreographer Khala Brannigan, the musicians of Brass Magic, videographer Peter Clark and four contemporary dancers seek to make the elements of the brain’s response to [...]

Becoming Osage

I became intrigued with the San Francisco indie-not-quite-pop band, Osage, after quirky frontwoman Chelsea Bryan ran on stage at the Balanced Breakfast residency in 2014 shamelessly introducing herself as the new girl in the city. She had just moved from Washington DC and was set to start a fresh iteration of this developing music project. Since then, Osage's addictive melodies that lock step with rhythm, combined with Chelsea's distinct voice, has deepened my intrigue and are catching momentum in San Francisco. Last week, I caught her in between her MFA studies and we sat down over chips and (the best) guacamole at La Oaxaqueña in the [...]

By |January 14, 2016|Tags: |

Album Premiere: listen to Eight Belles’ new self-titled LP

Three years after the release of its debut album, Girls Underground, Oakland indie folk duo Eight Belles returns with a self-titled follow-up on Saint Rose Records, and we are beyond stoked to premiere it today. The band will celebrate the release with a performance at The Rickshaw Stop in San Francisco on Dec. 10 with Cave Clove and The Young Elders. Singer Jessi Phillips, guitarist Henry Aloysius Nagle, and engineer Ross Harris (Emily Jane White) tracked the album over three years, enlisting a cadre of prominent Bay Area musicians including singer/ pianist Joel Robinow (Once and Future Band, Howlin’ Rain), drummer Shaun Lowecki (Painted [...]

By |December 8, 2015|Tags: |
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