Down The 5: Jonathan Bree masquerades at the Lodge Room

New Zealand singer-songwriter Jonathan Bree touched down in Los Angeles on Saturday night at the Lodge Room. Bree is best known for the “You’re So Cool” video, which features Bree and his band dressed as a '60s-era pop group wearing thin, full masks stretched over their faces. Released in 2017, the video now has over 14 million views. While the song’s plaintive strings roar front and center, the humanity in the video is rendered emotionless. It all turns into a creepy, the-mannequins-have-come-to-life-but-they’re-quite-sad music video. Regardless of what it really means, Bree hit a nerve. Bree mostly picked from his 2018 [...]

By |November 22, 2019|Tags: |

Down The 5: mewithoutYou, Smidley at the Teragram Ballroom

Touring in support of their seventh studio album, [Untitled], the Philadelphia post-hardcore band mewithoutYou tore through a long and aggressive set at the Teragram Ballroom in Los Angeles on Monday night. Leading with the album’s scorched-earth opener (“9:27a.m., 7/29”), singer Aaron Weiss’ dropped straight into his frantic screaming style. Weiss rants like an novelist who knows he only has a few breaths left in a the midst of a minor-key panic. The crowd loved it. Arms up, singing along while a gentle mosh pit swayed beneath the band. Due to ignorance, I’d designated mewithoutYou as more melodic post-hardcore than Touche [...]

By |November 15, 2018|Tags: , |

Down The 5: The Body cry for help in LA

Portland duo the Body dropped into in Los Angeles to perform another wall-rattling drone-and-gasp performance at the Echo on Tuesday night. Since they released their second full-length LP, All The Waters of the Earth Turn to Blood, in 2010, the Body have consistently acted as extreme music's most willing participants, conspiring to release collaborative efforts with a full roster of artists including Braveyoung, Thou,, Krieg, Uniform, the Haxan Cloak, and Full of Hell. Despite press rumblings that opener Lingua Ignota's Kristin Hayter might be joining the duo onstage (presumably for supplemental vocals), the Body performed only as themselves — [...]

Down the 5: The best upcoming shows and events in LA (7/4 – 7/17)

Sunday, July 8 Stones Throw @ The Line Hotel Stones Throw is back by the second-floor pool at the Line Hotel in Koreatown, LA every Sunday from 3-7PM. Free with RSVP Thursday, July 12 Big Ups, Potty Mouth, Total Heat @ The Smell Brooklyn-based harsh-your-vibes punks Big Ups return to LA in support of their latest album Two Parts Together. STILL WOOZY, NEIL FRANCES, and KCRW DJ Jeremy Sole @ Summer Nights at the Hammer Museum Oakland's Still Woozy hits the Hammer Museum for a FREE show of bedroom pop electronica. Friday, July 13 The Coathangers, Dommengang @ Resident [...]

By |July 3, 2018|Tags: |

Down The 5: Iceage strut, howl, and stagger in Los Angeles

Dropping into LA in support of their fourth album Beyondless, Denmark’s Iceage brought a swelling musical catalog, stage presence, and ego to The Regent in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday night. Led by the swaggering moans of singer Elias Bender Rønnenfelt, Iceage ran through a 75-minute set pulling primarily from the new Nick Cave-inspired Beyondless. Everything about the band seems to be getting bigger. They used to play 15 minute sets when they stormed onto the scene back in 2011, the shows a slobbering mess of guitar noise, alcohol, and Rønnenfelt’s barely audible moaning. In those days, their carelessness on-stage [...]

Review + Photos: Perfume Genius @ The Independent

Perfume Genius (photo: Estefany Gonzalez) “I woke up mad today,” Mike Hadreas, the artist also known as Perfume Genius, told the audience during his sold-out performance on Tuesday night at the Independent. Dressed in slacks, a thin white tank-top, half chaps, and black dress shoes, Hadreas danced with a billowing flow and did not actually seem to be upset about anything except the function of his right in-ear monitor, which he took to removing halfway through every song in frustration. Opening song “Otherside” began with a soft piano riff before bursting into a noise blast lit by bright yellow stage lights. [...]

By |July 21, 2017|Tags: |

Review: Algiers bring protest music to Starline Social Club

The greatest protest music finds its power not through words but by trafficking in emotions — often a burst of energy that mirrors the struggle transpiring everyday outside the song. Algiers, a four-piece rock band from Atlanta, write protest music that speaks long and often. Scan the track listing of their newest LP, The Underside of Power, and it reads with the diction of the oppressed: panthers, power, martyrs, death, blood, plague. Algiers wedge as many words into their gloomy post-industrial blues as humanly possible, spitting more and more stories like seeds they hope will settle and grow. The shotgun [...]

By |July 19, 2017|Tags: |

Review: WAVVES’ “King of the Beach” returns to San Francisco

WAVVES (photo: Joshua Hernandez) “I got enemies, a million enemies / but baby, I am feeling fine” ends the chorus to one of the marquee tracks on WAVVES’ latest release You’re Welcome. It’s a nod to project-head Nathan Williams’ media-reputation as indie rock’s spoiled child that also anchors yet another uncompromising hook from the thirty year-old Los Angeles resident. The self-proclaimed King of the Beach pulled from his entire bag of tricks for a sold-out Saturday night show at the Independent this weekend. His four-piece band ripped through 19 songs over the course of an hour and a half, a blistering [...]

By |June 7, 2017|

Confronting real death with Mount Eerie at Starline Social Club

"This is intense. I keep wanting to apologize but you are all here. You must be getting something from it." Phil Elverum of Mount Eerie did not have too much to say during his sold-out show Friday night at the Starline Social Club in Oakland. But he did let us know that he was truly thankful for the attention and support, given that his latest album A Crow Looked At Me deals almost exclusively with his deeply personal grief after the passing of his partner Geneviève Castrée. Besides opening with a new song, Elverum played the album's sparse, acoustic songs [...]

By |April 18, 2017|Tags: |
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