10 Spooky Musical Pieces for Halloween

Posted by Eric Brightwell, October 26, 2015 03:33pm | Post a Comment
Vintage Halloween Masks

At one of the several jobs at which I work we’ve started listening to a Halloween playlist from Spotify or Pandora and like all of those pre-fab playlists it sucks. There aren’t that many explicitly Halloween songs so whomever programed it resorted to tossing in things like Duran Duran’s “Hungry Like the Wolf" because what's scarier than a hungry Brummie? The Searchers’ “Love Potion No. 9” is not scary and although it's a bit mad, neither is Screamin’ Jay Hawkins’s “I Put a Spell on You” -- both apparently chosen because, you know, potions and spells and such. That sort of thinking is also why David Seville’s deeply annoying (but not scary) “Witch Doctor” now haunts every facet of my brain. Basically this playlist is 90% the kind of stuff collected by Dr. Retarded, novelty record collector and chief head of surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital.

I like spooky music and horror films (although they're sadly almost never scary) so this kind of lazy mix-making gets no “squeaks” from me. There is so much more appropriate music out there. The other night some friends and I went to the Million Dollar Theatre to see Dawn of the Dead and before the show former Amoebite Jimmy Hey DJed a set which drew from film scores by Goblin, naturally, and some more unlikely picks, such as Scott Walker’s “The Electrician.” Of course this inspired me to write the following listicle for your enjoyment.

An Intimate Evening with Matisyahu in San Francisco, November 6

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, October 25, 2015 03:28pm | Post a Comment


Amoeba Music and CIIS Public Programs & Performances present An Intimate Evening with Matisyahu on Friday, November 6th at the Herbst Theatre in San Francisco.

In celebration of the 10th anniversary of his breakthrough album, Live at Stubb's, Matisyahu has taken a new look at the music that first made his reputation with his new release Live at Stubb's III: A 10-Year Journey. In two stripped-back sit-down shows in March of 2015, Matisyahu performed new arrangements of his early reggae hits from the original album, along with a selection of later favorites up through Akeda. This tour reconnects Matisyahu with long-time musical collaborators and friends from his early touring days, including Live at Stubb's guitarist Aaron Dugan.

Matisyahu and his band will present an evening of stripped-back arrangements highlighting the music that launched his career while taking fans of all ages on a journey through his evolution.

Get your tickets now for this for this very special event.


Album Picks: Joanna Newsom, Fuzz, Pure Bathing Culture

Posted by Billy Gil, October 23, 2015 12:07pm | Post a Comment

Joanna NewsomDivers

joanna newsom divers lpJoanna Newsom’s first album in five years finds the musician lending her ornate songcraft and magical imagery to an album that at its plainest, examines relationships and the effects of the passage of time. “Anecdotes” begins the album with woodland noise and shortly reintroduces Newsom’s piano, harp and uncommon croon, her lyrics painting slices of life of a soldier laying land mines and returning home, summing up the sentiment it portrays with the line, “Anecdotes cannot say what Time may do.” Newsom’s lyrics are as inscrutable as ever—“Sapokanikan” refers to a Native American village that once stood where Greenwich Village now lies and references Percy Bysshe Shelley’s poem about a fallen Egyptian pharaoh, “Ozymandias”—but they’re in service of her central theme, as she sings, “the records they left are cryptic at best, lost in obsolescence.” The arrangements by Newsom, Nico Muhly, Ryan Francesconi and Dave Longstreth (Dirty Projectors) tickle the songs with orchestral brushes and lend rock pulse to songs like “Leaving the City.” Shorter songs appear, like “The Things I Say,” a downtrodden, countrified piano ditty with lyrics both direct (“I’m ashamed of half the things I say”) and fanciful (“When the sky goes thinkin’ Paris, France, do you think of the girl who used to dance when you’d frame the movement within your hands”) that ends in a rain of beaming guitars. These serve to as breathers before sinking into epics like “Divers,” which gives Newsom’s harp and malleable voice room to roam as she intones, “How do you choose your life? How do you choose the time you must exhale and kick and writhe?” Like Newsom’s previous work, Divers demands close attention. Her albums are the antithesis of instant gratification, which is perversely likely why she’s become so popular as an out-of-time balladeer despite sounding more medieval than millennial—her songs beg that you drop what you’re doing, lest you miss one of her witticisms or whimsies. It’s a strangely soothing effect, harkening back to the time of following lyric sheets and sitting to listen to music as a solitary activity. Despite being seeped in melancholia, Divers ends on the somewhat positive note of “Time As a Symptom.” Newsom cries about the “joy of life” as owls hoot and birds chirp in the background, declaring, “the moment of your greatest joys sustains.” Divers may be concerned with the fleeting nature of time, but it’s a convincing bid at artistic permanence.

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Weekly Roundup: W-X, jennylee, Summer Twins

Posted by Billy Gil, October 23, 2015 08:23am | Post a Comment

W-X – “Brazilian Worm Band”

tim presleyLike his onetime bandmate in Hair, Ty Segall, Tim Presley doesn’t seem to sleep. Between his loads of great albums as White Fence, who released a new album last year, and his new collaboration with Cate Le Bon, DRINKS, which released an album earlier this year, you’d think he wouldn’t have time for another project. But here we have W-X, a new solo project from Presley. From the sounds of this first song, he’s interested here in making outsider noise pop. “Brazilian Worm Band” sounds like a demented toy factory on the fritz, as broken-down vintage moogs run amok. Great stuff. W-X is due Nov. 6 on Castle Face.


jennylee “never” video

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Mick Rock's David Bowie Photo Book 'The Rise of David Bowie' on Sale From Amoeba

Posted by Billy Gil, October 21, 2015 06:55pm | Post a Comment

david bowie photo book taschen mick rockMick Rock’s massive tome of a photo book on David Bowie is now for sale at Amoeba Music.

The tall,16-pound book features a hologram cover and more than 300 pages of photographs. It sells for $700, but it’s limited to only 1,972 copies, signed by Rock and Bowie. Look for the book in the display case next to the counters at Amoeba Hollywood!

Rock famously shot many musicians during the 1970s, from Lou Reed to Queen and Blondie’s Debbie Harry. Between 1972 and 1973, Rock was Bowie’s official photographer, while Bowie was taking the world by storm with his celebrated album Hunky Dory and his emerging Ziggy Stardust persona.

The book includes pictures for press and album jackets along with intimate backstage photos, around 50 percent of which are said to be unseen by the public.

The book sale coincides with the exhibition “Mick Rock: Shooting for Stardust. The Rise of David Bowie & Co.” at TASCHEN Gallery, which is located at 8070 Beverly Boulevard in Los Angeles. The exhibit runs through Oct. 30.

Read an interview with Rock about his time photographing Bowie via Rolling Stone. See a couple of photos from the book below. Shop more collectible books from Amoeba here.

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