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Best of 2016: Kelly's Personal Picks (now with more cat)!

Posted by Kelly S. Osato, December 31, 2016 02:18pm | Post a Comment
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Looking back at 2016, it was a good year for music, if for nothing else. If you're reading this—hey!—you survived the ride. How did you do it? Was it the music? Without a doubt, music has saved my life, or at least my mood, as often as once a day (very probably) over this past year and for that I am thankful (most definitely). Here follows a little list of personal favorites that really came through for me in 2016. My cat may be in some of these pictures...

tony molina confront the truth 45 slumberland
Tony Molina
- Confront the Truth
(Slumberland)

I never know what to expect from Tony Molina, aside from hella Bay Area bombast and great short songs, and Confront the Truth further confused matters for me (save for the short songs tip) in the best way possible. This lovely 45 is brimming with just the sort of comfortably spun, little-bit-country/little bit folk 'n roll melodies I like. It can also be said that it's brimming with conspicuous influences, namely bits n' bobs reminiscent of The Beatles, Elliott Smith, and perhaps even a little early Skynyrd (think "The Seasons"). Nevertheless, it's easy to appreciate the truth of Molina's heartfelt songwriting and superb ability to navigate a softer power as he coaxes and bends his strums and twangs 'til the bitter end on this ten-ish minutes long, eight song confrontation. Or 'til the bittersweet end, as the cherry on top is a loving cover of Thin Lizzy's wistful instrumental "Banshee" rounding out the record like a would-be bonus track. Altogether a perfect example of how beautifully moving even the most fleeting music can be.

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Numero Reissues First Two Blonde Redhead LPs as 'Masculin Feminin'

Posted by Amoebite, September 26, 2016 01:45pm | Post a Comment

Blonde Redhead Masculin Feminin

Over the course of their more than twenty years as a band, Blonde Redhead has evolved from raucous noise rockers to purveyors of shoegaze, dream pop, and alternative rock. Now the fine folks over at Numero Group have compiled the NYC trio's earliest works into a box set called Masculin Féminin, available soon as both a four-LP vinyl and two-CD release.

This new release features the band's first two albums, Blonde Redhead and La Mia Vita Violenta, originally released on CD via Sonic Youth drummer Steve Shelley's Smells Like label. But it also includes some of Blonde Redhead's early radio performances, demos, and singles, plus a book of essays and previously unpublished photos.

The box set hits our stores September 30th, but you can pre-order them now online at Amoeba.com (and they'll ship FREE to U.S. addresses).

Pre-order Masculin Féminin 4-LP and Masculin Féminin 2-CD.

New "What's in My Bag?" Episode with Blonde Redhead

Posted by Amoebite, April 18, 2016 06:56pm | Post a Comment

Blonde Redhead Amoeba Music What's In My Bag?

Do you love Ennio Morricone? Well, so do the members of Blonde Redhead! On their last west coast tour, the New York trio stopped in at Amoeba San Francisco and picked up a couple of the legendary composer's film soundtracks. One, L'Istruttoria E Chiusa Dimentichi, they had never heard before, while all three now own a copy of the other, The Sicilian Clan. Of course, Morricone wasn't the only artist they found at Amoeba, and as you could expect from a band as eclectic as they are, their picks were pretty interesting.

Blonde Redhead BarraganFormed in 1993 after Italian undergraduate jazz students Amedeo and Simone Pace met Japanese art student Kazu Makino at an Italian restaurant in New York, Blonde Redhead fused noise-rock and shoegaze to create their own style of dream pop and rock. Their self-titled first record was produced by Steve Shelly and released in 1995, which has been followed by a steady stream of releases since. In 2004 Blonde Redhead released Misery Is a Butterfly, their first for the 4AD record label. 2014 saw the release of Barragan, their ninth, and most recent, studio album. The band will be on the road again this spring with a stop at San Francisco's The Independent on May 24 and two shows in Los Angeles at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, May 26-27.

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Kelly's Choice Albums (and So Fourth) of 2014

Posted by Kelly S. Osato, December 30, 2014 03:15pm | Post a Comment
best of 2014 kelly amoeba personal list choice cuts vinyl record album list
This is it, we made it to the last Tuesday of 2014. With nothing but a new year's worth of new release days ahead, here's to looking back over the past three-hundred sixty odd days filled with sonic revelations and reverberations. With that in mind, I've complied my very own short stack of yummy black plastic pancake picks -- my favorite records released this year. Mmm, pancakes....

1. Once & Future Band - Brain EP
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Listening to this sprawling progressive precipice of a rock record for the first time was like slipping backwards over a ledge built by everyday mundanities and falling. Falling but never bracing for impact, maybe never touching Earth again. Just like "looking ahead with no backwards glancing," as vocalist/keymaster Joel Robinow puts it in the nearly nine minute eponymous opening track, I was besotted and entirely overcome with feels. I mean, as much as it urks my nerve when folks misuse and overstate things as "literally" being or doing this or that, I can state without hesitation that this record literally blew me away. Well, in a figurative sense. Add to that the fact that this sweet baby is obviously a passionate labor of love, deftly crafted by a couple of local backyard Bay Area wizards, and GAH! my esteem for this band couldn't be any more swollen. These guys are pretty much the best band around right now.

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50 Essential Albums Released in 2014

Posted by Aaron Detroit, December 5, 2014 09:20am | Post a Comment

Aaron Detroit, Buyer at Amoeba Hollywood. I've worked in Hollywood for ten years, but started my time with Amoeba - way back in 1998 -  at the San Francisco store. Here is my extensive list of new essential listening, released in 2014. There is a wide range of genres and artists represented here because musical passion should not be static.





1. Swans - To Be Kind (Young God)
To Be Kind, Swans’ 3rd LP since their 2010 reformation (and 13th overall,) is an unlikely triumph after 2012’s seemingly unmatchable masterpiece, The Seer. Any trepidation one might have about the sprawling triple-LP’s intimidating track lengths should evaporate under it’s hypnotizing ebb-and-flow of mental blues, super-honed grooves, manic clatter and hushed passages; all of which are eventually crushed by monolithic waves of majesty. Nothing short of classic.



 2. Carla Bozulich - Boy (Constellation)
Boy is Carla Bozulich’s (of Ethyl Meatplow, Geraldine Fibbers and Evangelista-renown) 3rd solo affair, but in a lot of ways it feels like her first. Bozulich pours her famed, devastating whiskey-voice into a cocktail of funeral country, death blues and industrial noise that sticks to your guts. Carla herself refers to this LP as her “pop record,” and if that's a true description, we could sure use a whole lot more “pop” albums like Boy. Don’t overlook this one.

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