“Hotel Figueroa” is Text Me’s third single off of ‘Group Chat Vol. 2’

And we have another one from the folks from Text Me camp: An LA excursion with the one-two punch combo of Ricky Lake and Sam Johnson. "Hotel Figueroa" arrives as a bit of a contrast to other singles off of the soon-to-come mixtape, Group Chat Vol. 2 — the track is breezy and brolic at the same time, an atypical hazy and low-key yin to the the collective's club-friendly rap yang. We haven't seen too much of Ricky since he caught our attention with the dark wooziness of his album, The Mother 966. But it seems like hanging out at [...]

Emily McLean collaborates with Rashaan Carter on somber new EP ‘Canons’

It's been two years since Emily McLean's venture into pop-minded, minimal R&B on her last EP Shades, made under the watchful eye of producer Mars Today. On Canons, her latest release out last Friday, McLean speaks her truth of vulnerability, of fear and morality over what the world around her represents and reflects. The project is an open-air diary of sparse, straightforward arrangements overseen by Rashaan Carter, a jazz bassist with credits on albums like Kindness's Something Like a War, Moses Sumney's Aronmanticism, and Takuya Kuroda's Zigzagger, designed for a meditative and solemn experience of soul and jazz. Canons EP [...]

By |September 16, 2019|Tags: , |

Next Week: Copyslut at The Ivy Room

Multi-medium creatives and resident Oakland punk-rockers Copyslut are playing their first Bay Area gig since their sold-out show benefiting the Homeless Youth Alliance at the end of Pride month. Since that show, the band has been teasing their upcoming single and music video "Maker's Mark" on social media, and focusing on activists efforts separate from their music. Copyslut writes aggressive, uncompromising music embodying the idea of radical gentleness. The band emphasizes their love for alternate sources and definitions of power, creating a jarring contradiction that exists at the border of their music and their existence as a band. It’s refreshing [...]

By |September 13, 2019|Tags: |

Text Me Records drops weekend starter, “First to Party”

Photo courtesy of Wabless With few summer Fridays left, the Text Me crew drops off a new track to keep the warm nights going. On "First to Party", Lord Morgan, Ricky Lake and Basi are ready to pregame and with Studio Dad as their designated driver-producer, the rappers swag out on this funky and out there track that sounds like that last sip before stepping out. "First to Party" arrives as the latest single from an upcoming mixtape, Group Chat Vol. 2, born out of the publishing house's infamous writing camps. To some, packing in three to four features on [...]

Rexx Life Raj is on a space mission in new single and video, “Moonwalk”

Rexx Life Raj is a rapping space cadet in his new video, "Moonwalk" sent on an expedition to save Kenny Beats. The producer has been missing since the 1980s and in the style of a B-grade sci-fi flick, Raj follows a training regiment but even with his mind and body right, no amount of training can prep Raj for what's waiting for him out there. Directed by STRIPMALL, with an assist from Adrian Per, the video's high-gravity hijinks done with wire stunts, green screen and dime store costumes is an amusing visual for the vibey track, which is also featured [...]

By |September 6, 2019|Tags: , |

The Brankas prove to be master codebreakers on ‘Safes’

It never hurts to begin any piece of writing with a famous and profound quote, so here's one for you: "Change is the only constant in life." - Heraclitus (Greek philosopher 535 BC – 475 BC) Tangentially related hyperbole: I'd argue that nowhere in the history of recorded sound is this statement truer than within the music of San Francisco's the Brankas. And on their new record Safes, you will find yourself constantly unsure of what's next, but loving every minute of the journey. (photo: Thomas Monsanti) The Brankas describe themselves as "1st Grade Math Rock." While this playful one-liner [...]

By |September 2, 2019|Tags: |

Mr. Hong returns home with new project, ‘Vacation’

Artwork by Günseli Sepici Mr. Hong, a 24-year-old San Francisco beat producer, has a real talent for taking all sensory input and turning it into music. Take, for example, his recipe for "hibiki high ball," one of the tracks off his latest effort, Vacation. The salt and sand of Maui are tuned to the sound of tickling keys that skip in time with breezy synths. It's easy-going but vibe-y, and the briny beaches is just as evident as the smoky horns that string it all together at the bridge. As a little R&R can do, Vacation is Mr. Hong at [...]

By |August 30, 2019|Tags: |

Boy Scouts release new single and video, “Hate Ya 2”

Just in time for their fall US tour, Boy Scouts have released a new single and accompanying video "Hate Ya 2." Raised in California's Central Valley, Boy Scouts (also known as Taylor Vick) grew up listening to soft, acoustic guitar focused icons like the Dixie Chicks and Michelle Branch. Their latest single "Hate Ya 2" discusses the difficulties of navigating relationships and conflicting emotions. Boy Scouts' latest release is the perfect introduction to their upcoming album Free Company out August 30. The Oakland-based singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist makes music that is warm and inviting; similar to seeking advice from a [...]

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: |

LA’s Rose Dorn make their Bay Area debut next month

(photo: Derec Patrick) Rose Dorn just released the video for “Champ” off their forthcoming album, Days You Were Leaving (out August 23 on Bar/None Records). This video rates high amongst those who enjoy the mesmerizing fall of the domino set against emo alternative pop-rock, and we mean that in a really solid way. Props to the handmade domino set, the vintage attire and the mildly spooky grandma house setting. Music video aside, Rose Dorn is truly a listening pleasure. It’s post punk dream-rock and warm twanging guitars. The Rose Dorn trio says they were just “…Valley Kids who dug weird [...]

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