Amoeblog

Amoeba Presents The Belle Brigade at The Echo in February

Posted by Billy Gil, January 22, 2014 05:29pm | Post a Comment

belle brigade amoebaFolksy duo The Belle Brigade are taking over The Echo’s Tuesday night residency in February, playing free shows every Tuesday night in the month.

The duo, composed of siblings Barbara and Ethan Gruska, released their self-titled debut in 2011 to rapturous acclaim, drawing comparisons to Fleetwood Mac and Simon & Garfunkel. LA Times’s Randall Roberts said the album had “a dozen California pop gems,” while Newsday critic Glenn Gamboa said they had a “doe-eyed innocence … that makes their sun-kissed ’70s SoCal sound even more appealing.” The band’s second album, Just Because, is due March 25 on ATO. You can preorder the CD or LP from Amoeba now.

The band plays Feb. 4 with A House for Lions and Night Cruise; Feb. 11 with Fell Runner, Juliette Commagere and Syd Arthur; Feb. 18 with Alex Lilly and Clara-Nova; and Feb. 25 with Harriet and WATERS. (Click on each date to RSVP to the shows.) Each show is free and starts at 8:30 p.m.

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Vivian Girls Officially Break Up; Slowdive Getting Back Together?

Posted by Billy Gil, January 22, 2014 11:14am | Post a Comment

Vivian Girls AmoebaOne of our favorite modern bands, Vivian Girls, are officially breaking up. They'll play two last shows, one of them here in L.A. at Highland Park's new Church on York venue, on Valentine's Day, Feb. 14. You can get tickets here. Or if you're in New York, you can see them at Death by Audio March 1; tickets for that show are here. Both shows are all-ages.

I made this Vivian Girls Family Tree a while back to note the myriad other projects that spring from the band. As far as the members of the band go, Cassie Ramone will continue with The Babies, along with Woods' Kevin Morby; Katy Goodman will have a new La Sera album out later this year; and Ali Koehler continues with her new band, Upset. You can read interviews I've done with Goodman and Upset.

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Album Picks: Warpaint, Mogwai, Damien Jurado, Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra, Pow!, Jeremy Jay

Posted by Billy Gil, January 21, 2014 10:49am | Post a Comment

Warpaint - Warpaint (CD, LP or Download)

warpaint warpaint amoebaWarpaint’s The Fool was a great slow burner of a record, one that grew on you with each successive listen such that it continues to sound great years on. Now, four years later, the ladies of Warpaint return with their long-awaited second record. As is their way, Warpaint unfolds at an unhurried pace, relishing in subtleties with songs whose meanings or melodies you might be able to place right away, but whose impressions lasts much longer than instant gratification-style pop songs. They’re sort of the spiritual successor to the band Slowdive, the shoegaze greats who encountered as much acclaim as derision during their time, due to their milky, washy music, but who have since been ensconced as one of the most beloved bands of the ’90s The effect of Warpaint’s music is similar, washing over you in spurts and leaving streaks. With a band like this, it’s generally tough to name singles or easy entry points, but Warpaint has some moments that stick out, namely “Biggy,” a great, trip hoppy pop song along the lines of Radiohead’s Kid A/Amnesiac period, while “Disco // Very” sees Emily Kokal’s vocals getting distorted and nasty over, yes, a disco beat, recalling some of the disco-rock of the ’00’s, only with a dirtier, dubbier tone. In these songs, Warpaint sees the band stretching their wings a bit, while fans of the first album will find much to love in the album’s dark, atmospheric corners. It’s altogether a fantastic, well-considered second album that proves the rewards of patience.

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Show Recap: Connan Mockasin at Amoeba Hollywood

Posted by Billy Gil, January 20, 2014 12:02pm | Post a Comment

connan mockasin amoebaKiwi singer-songwriter Connan Mockasin started his Jan. 17 set at Amoeba Hollywood with a set of loose instrumental jams punctuated by strange synth bursts. He cooed along to a smooth space groove before picking things up in an upbeat showcase for Mockasin's gloriously woozy guitar work, which got steadily more frantic until bombing out into a druggy outro.

connan mockasin caramel amoebaHe played the first part of the five-part "It's Your Body" suite, taken from the excellent Caramel album, which is a sumptuous soul jam apart from its four other, disparate parts. Mockasin paused to speak positively about L.A., saying he had been feeling sick and intimidated by city previously. "You hear all the stories ... and it's not true," Mockasin said of his first visit down. He asked for audience participation to hit the high notes on the next song. That ended up in a weird, warbling audience singalong mid-song.

He next played the Princey "Caramel," which burrows its way into your head via a catchy, repeated synth part. Mockasin sang soulfully, hitting those high notes perfectly and subtly warping his voice to match some of the effects on the record. The band exploded for Caramel standout "I'm the Man, That Will Find You," making great use of curling guitar riffs and its slightly-creepy-when-you-think-about-it titular chorus. The song sounds a bit like a warped 12" played at half-speed of a punk cover of a Motown hit that never existed. So try picturing that!

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Weekly Roundup: together PANGEA, New Bums, Pyramid Vritra, Allah-Las, Warm Soda, Cass McCombs, Bart Davenport & More

Posted by Billy Gil, January 17, 2014 10:24am | Post a Comment

Whoa too much music released this week. Here we go …

 

together PANGEA “Badillac”

together pangeaThe new album by L.A. garage greats together PANGEA is called Badillac, which is amazing. And so is the song, a more laid-back song for the band showing off their melodic side. Get excited for Badillac, which is due next week, Jan. 21, on Harvest (they’ll be at The Smell that day, too). Hear it at Soundcloud.

 

 

 

 

 

New Bums – “Black Bough”

new bumsBen Chasny is a busy guy, having released scores of music as psych-folk act Six Organs of Admittance, with acid-rockers Comets on Fire and others. Now he’s teamed up with Donovan Quinn of Skygreen Leopards as New Bums. The first taste, “Black Bough,” is a beautiful little ditty with some orchestral brushes and amazing acoustic guitarwork. Voices in a Rented Room is due Feb. 18 on Drag City.

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