Weekly Roundup: Kisses, Tijuana Panthers, Flesh World, Vaguess, Pearl Charles, Creeping Pink

Posted by Billy Gil, June 26, 2015 09:30am | Post a Comment

Kisses – “A Groove”

kisses bandKisses are no longer as pregnant as this press photo shows—the real-life couple of Jesse Kivel and Zinzi Edmundson have a new baby boy, as Kivel told Hit City USA. But if you think parenthood would mellow the electronic pop project, think again—“A Groove” is as funky as anything the band has done. Kivel’s vocals dance around a relatively spare disco bassline and beat, coming in with some sunbaked guitars and synths for an ear-caressing chorus. It’s from their upcoming third album, Rest in Paradise, due later this year.


Tijuana Panthers – “Front Window Down” video

tijuana panthersTijuana Panthers have unveiled a video for their great new-wave surf song “Front Window Down,” along with details about their new album. Poster will come out Aug. 28 via Innovative Leisure. And this week we premiered our latest episode of “What’s In My Bag?” with the band. Watch both videos below.

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Weekly Roundup: Cold Showers, Double Duchess, JIM, Superhumanoids

Posted by Billy Gil, June 19, 2015 09:33am | Post a Comment

Cold Showers - "Plantlife"
cold showersWe were big fans of Cold Showers' debut record, Love and Regret, a rumbling, heavy run through gothy post-punk environs. The first thing we've heard from their new album, Matter of Choice, boasts bigger synths and cleaner production, pumping up the Highland Park band's sound till it's a hook-laden beast. On "Plantlife," Cold Showers reveal the pop heart that was always beating beneath the black shroud without losing an ounce of their estimable cool. Can't wait to hear the rest of this record, which is due Aug. 28 on Dais. Listen via Stereogum.

Double Duchess - "Bullshit"

double duchessThis terrific cover of a Grace Jones B-side comes courtesy of S.F.'s Double Duchess, a queer production/performance art duo who replace the music of Jones' glam-disco original with hedonistic house beats that seem to emit sweat and smoke from the speakers. But as long as we're talking about Grace Jones, check out this video of her (I think) lip syncing to the original—watch that businessman clap while she dances on his fucking table. Can she just own a room or what? Listen to Double Duchess' version below via Pitchfork. The duo is holding a release party for its debut album, All Eyes on Me, next Thursday, June 25, at SF Oasis.

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Michael Vidal Talks 'Dream Center' Before Amoeba Hollywood Performance June 18

Posted by Billy Gil, June 16, 2015 05:10pm | Post a Comment

michael vidal amoeba hollywoodMichael Vidal is the thoughtful kind of songwriter and human being you don't encounter very often. Compared to his previous band, L.A. noise-rockers Abe Vigoda, his Dream Center EP is full of introspective tunes built on carefully constructed, textural guitars that build on where that band was headed on its last LP, the darkwave-inspired Crush. Vidal has been playing live shows now with a three-piece band as Dream Center has been recently reissued on LP and CD by Couple Skate. He'll be at Amoeba Hollywood for a performance June 18 at 6 p.m. I caught up with Vidal before the show to find out more about his writing process, Instagram art and the new album he's working on.

Are these mostly newer songs or did you originally write them with the intention of using them for Abe Vigoda? Is there a difference to how you wrote your parts of the songs with Abe and solo?

Vidal: The songs on Dream Center were all written for this new project, but many of them were written in this period of limbo and I wasn’t really sure what this new project was. It was kind of unclear what was going on with Abe Vigoda, but I had to keep writing and playing out. I knew these songs were different and were for me. The writing process of Abe Vigoda was extremely collaborative, incidental and kind of chaotic. I can’t write that way on my own. I write slowly and carefully now, which sounds boring but is actually way more fun.

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Album Picks: Jaakko Eino Kalevi, High on Fire, Part Time

Posted by Billy Gil, June 16, 2015 09:31am | Post a Comment

Jaakko Eino KaleviJaakko Eino Kalevi

jaako eino kaleviJaakko Eino Kalevi creates what could be called mystery pop. Like a distant Finish cousin to Ariel Pink, Kalevi’s dreamy tunes pulse with gently syncopated grooves, otherworldly synth bursts and a deeply intoning voice that gives his self-titled album a tinge of 4AD-style goth. Though Kalevi clearly has successfully digested albums by This Mortal Coil and Talk Talk, it’s also clear that he’s taken the time to develop his own sound, drawing from his moody ’80s predecessors, lacquering on some fashionably semi-ironic soft-rock sheen and hints of prog-rock and ’80s movie soundtracks, and coming out as a next-generation pop auteur with tunes as exotic as his vowel-friendly name. You might not know quite what Kalevi’s getting at, but his somewhat intangible nature is part of his appeal. The sultry “Say” and aerobic “Night at the Field” stand out from the crowd, but Jaakko Eino Kalevi is an incredibly warm and inviting listen from the top down. Curl up on Kalevi’s luxury sofa and let the magic happen.

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Amoeba's Top 10 Favorite Criterion Picks

Posted by Billy Gil, June 15, 2015 11:03am | Post a Comment

amoeba criterion top 10

Starting next week, we're holding a huge sale on Criterion Collection movies at Amoeba Hollywoodfrom June 18 through July 4, get 25% off all new Criterion DVDs and Blu-rays. You can read more about that sale here. To kick it off, we gathered our collective heads to pick our favorite Criterion movies on disc. Criteria varies, but generally these discs offer something special beyond the movie itself. Check out our picks below.

Band of Outsiders (1964)

band of outsiders criterion blu-rayJean-Luc Godard’s French New Wave classic gets a pristine high-definition digital transfer on both the DVD and Blu-ray, while excerpts from the documentary La nouvelle vague par elle-même offer behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with Godard. And a short film by the great French New Wave filmmaker Agnes Varda featuring much of the Band of Outsiders cast is just icing.


The Battle of Algiers ­(1966)

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