Amoeblog

Sorcerer, Hatchback and Windsurf

Posted by Mike Battaglia, September 25, 2007 03:25pm | Post a Comment


Little did I know that the amazing 12" by Sorcerer that I had picked up earlier this year was by an artist living in my backyard! I had been initially attracted to "Surfing At Midnight" due to its fantastic Prins Thomas remix and the fact that it was on white-hot UK label Tirk (aka the folks behind the highly revered Nuphonic imprint), but I was further intrigued - who is/are Sorcerer? Well, it didn't take too long to find out.



Sorcerer's debut full-length White Magic was released in August and the SF Electronica section has been singing its praises ever since. The album is chock-full of sun-drenched beach vibes, slow tempos, wistful guitar melodies and gentle, rolling beats - basically everything I'm feeling in 2007. I finally met Daniel Judd - Mr. Sorcerer himself - recently, at Prins Thomas' SF debut earlier this month and got to tell him how great I thought his music was. He's a chill, friendly guy, not unlike his music unsurprisingly, and he introduced me to his partner Sam Grawe aka Hatchback, who recently released a fantastic 12" on SoCal boutique label Sentrall Records, and who Daniel collaborates with as Windsurf. Not long after we exchanged pleasantries, Thomas played a tune that was so great I *had* to find out what it was. Lo and behold - it was Windsurf's remix of "Us vs Them" by LCD Soundsystem, coming out soon on the Bunch of Stuff EP on DFA. Awestruck, I walked over to Sam and Daniel. "This is your tune?!", I gushed. They confirmed it, and it was then I knew I had a new favorite artist. I invited the duo to play a DJ set for Mandala, Amoeba SF's weekly DJ series, which they will be doing this Friday at 7pm. In the meantime, I asked them some questions via email; here are their responses:

Continue reading...

(In which Job is born again.)

Posted by Job O Brother, September 25, 2007 11:31am | Post a Comment

[Insert cuss word here.] I forgot to buy cone filters. Now, instead of waking up with a fresh cup of organic Sumatra, I’m waking up with a cold can of diet Coke. This is low. I really should just crawl back into bed and start over tomorrow. Of course, if I did that, I still wouldn’t have any cone filters.

But maybe some kind soul would read this blog and, as I hid beneath my comforter, re-enacting the third trimester of my mummy’s gestation process, they would come to my apartment and gift me some cone filters. Then I could safely slip out of the vaginal opening I’d have reconstructed using tin-foil, Ikea tumblers and cat fur, and greet the world as a newborn baby. That would be sweet. I’d wipe off the after-birth, put on a fresh pair of diapers, sip on a yummy mug of coffee and wait for my cord-stump to fall off.


"It's Rufus with an 'R' not Liza with a 'Z'...!"

I saw Rufus Wainwright at the Hollywood Bowl Sunday night. I went there with my gorgeous pal, Carrie. We walked there from my apartment, an act which our LA-native friends thought akin to The Donner Party.

“You’re walking from Sunset Boulevard to the Hollywood Bowl?!” Cameron gasped, “That’s uphill!”

“It’s not uphill,” I answered, “It’s up slant.”

As Carrie and I neared the famed half-shell, I started to worry that we were there on the wrong night, and had actually arrived for a Bear Convention. I’ve never seen so many burly men in designer jeans.

(For those of you who don’t know what a “bear” is, I’ll explain:

BAY AREA HIP-HOP ARCHIVES: SHOWS & FLIERS 1984-1996

Posted by Billyjam, September 25, 2007 07:10am | Post a Comment
             

Since I (finally) got a new scanner, I am now able to go back into my Bay Area Hip-Hop Archives and start scanning and posting all of these wonderful slices of music history from the last 20+ years in Yay Area rap. Ranging from 1984 to 1996, these are some show fliers plus a ticket stub (above) which is from the first time I went to check out the Egyptian Lover and Uncle Jamm's Army * -- the LA turntable army (who were really hot at the time - especially the Egyptian Lover, whose single "Egypt Egypt"/"What is A DJ If He Can't Scratch" ruled at the time) -- when they came north to the Bay Area to do a show at the cavernous Richmond Auditorium. Rap shows, especially large scale ones, were still a relatively new phenomenon in the Bay Area in '84. It would still be a couple of years before the Fresh Fest (Whodini, Kuritis Blow, Fat Boys, etc) happened and rolled through Oakland (and that was a totally exciting new experience, to check out a large scale hip-hop festival with all of these major acts in the one place!). But in the few years before '84 I only remember going to the very, very occasional rap show, such as Grand Master Flash & Furious Five at the Berkeley Square, which was in '82 I believe, But I do clearly remember some very vocally disgruntled club goers at the long defunct University Ave venue complaining that they had forked over their money but there was no band -- just a DJ and bunch of rappers on mics (twas early days for sure).

Anyway Uncle Jamm's Army would return to the East Bay within a month that summer of '84 when they performed with Run DMC at the Oakland Convention Center (see flyer below and note its very basic layout -- this was in the pre-photoshop days). Also note the low ticket price of only $6.50 for each show.  The other Bay Area rap concert fliers below include one or two that actually never happened-- like the 1994 Music People / In-A-Minute showcase, scheduled during the annual music convention that always attracted a lot of hip-hop acts from all over the country, the Gavin Seminar in San Francisco. That show fell through at the last minute due to the club not being able to get insurance (a common problem with rap shows then and now).  And with some of these shows, the venue is long gone, such as the Omni ("the Bay Area's largest showcase nightclub" on Shattuck at 48th near Telegraph) in North Oakland where Young MC headlined in September 1989 with Bay Area artists Paris, APG Crew, Captial Tax, and Step G with MC Sirgeo all opening for him. Another time within about a year of that show, Too $hort headlined at the Omni -- doing his typical no-frills, straight up rap concert. (This was a time when another Oakland rapper, MC Hammer's stage shows were huge choreographed events -- Too $hort was the proud antitheses of that.)

9/25 new releases...jose gonzalez...mum...

Posted by Brad Schelden, September 24, 2007 11:05pm | Post a Comment
Out today is the beautiful new album from Jose Gonzalez. Mute reissued his first album "Veneer" about 2 years ago. So this is his second album. But his first real album for Mute. It is called "In Our Nature." I will admit that Jose Gonzalez is not for everybody. I was not even sure if he was for me for a long time. It took me a little while to give in to Mr. Gonzalez. Most of his popularity initially came from his brilliant little cover of "Heartbeats" by the Knife. It was used in a commercial that everybody seemed to watch on the internet.  I am not sure if the commercial sold more Sony Bravia LCD TVs. But it for sure sold thousands more copies of his debut album "Veneer." I think I actually heard his version of this song before I even heard The Knife. I would eventually become obsessed with their version as well which was on their album "Deep Cuts." Jose and The Knife share more than just this great song. They both come from the land of Sweden.

 Jose Gonzalez was born in Sweden but his parents are from Argentina. His music doesn't really sound like the mix of ABBA and Astor Piazzolla that you might expect from a Swedish Argentine. It has more of a minimal Nick Drake sound. Beautiful little minimal indie rock with just mostly guitar and vocals. He is sort of known for his covers and performs many of them live. His version of "Love Will Tear Us Apart" is almost as magical as the original. He also has a cover on the new album which he has already been playing live for the last couple of years. The song is "Teardrop" by Massive Attack. It took me a while to actually even recognize it. Which is very impressive since it happens to be one the most overplayed songs of all time. The Massive Attack version with vocals from the wonderful Elizabeth Fraser of the Cocteau Twins is fantastic. But I have heard that song so many times over the years that I had pretty much decided that I never needed to hear it again. And I also love Cocteau Twins more than anything. So it is a hard original to compete with. But his version is just as brilliant but completely different.  The whole album is  absolutely beautiful. It is simple and uncomplicated. Just a great album. Jose Gonzalez is actually one of those people that deserves any fame that he has acquired over the last couple of years. I just hope all those fans he got from that commercial don't forget about him. He has managed to create a second album that is just as good as the first. I am going to go listen to it again right now. And unlike that original Massive Attack song that he covers, I am not even close to being over Jose Gonzalez.

Quicksilver

Posted by phil blankenship, September 24, 2007 10:18pm | Post a Comment
 





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