Amoeblog

New "What's In My Bag?" Episode With Jennifer Herrema & Black Bananas!

Posted by Amoebite, March 19, 2014 12:36pm | Post a Comment

Jennifer Herrema is best known for her role in alternative rock band Royal Trux. From 1987 until their breakup in 2001, Herrema and her then partner/bandmate, Neil Hagerty, broke out of the underground and into rock & roll mainstream.  With 13 official releases (including two on Virgin Records), Royal Trux built a solid foundation for future projects to blossom. Fast forward to 2004, Herrema is pumping out the jams with her band, RTX (Rad Times Express), somewhat a continuation of the previous Royal Trux trend. RTX went on to release three studio albums, and changed their name to Black Bananas on their fourth release, Rad Times Express IV (Drag City, 2012). Subsequently, their fourth release acted as the debut under the Black Bananas name.

Jennifer Herrema and her Black Bananas bandmate Kurt Midness stopped by Amoeba Hollywood for another cool episode of "What's In My Bag?" Some might be surprised to know that Jennifer and Kurt get down with hip hop! They pick up a vinyl copy of Dr. Dre's Chronic 2001 and also grab a copy of 2 Live Crew's Greatest Hits. Those two records alone pack enough bass to blow your speakers! They also dig up a cool copy of the Blade Runner soundtrack on 180 gram vinyl. Check out the full episode to see all of their picks and stay tuned for a new album from Black Bananas scheduled to release in June 2014.

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Weekly Roundup: God? Releases, Alela Diane, United Ghosts, Kim Free, Soft Metals, Deafheaven

Posted by Billy Gil, May 2, 2013 04:35pm | Post a Comment

Drag City Imprint God? Releases White Fence, Scraper Reissues

scraper white fenecThe new Drag City imprint God? is new but already pretty awesome. Their second and third releases will be a reissue of Cali’s White Fence’s self-titled debut LP and S.F.’s Scraper’s debut 7”. White Fence aka Tim Presley is rad. His latest release Cyclops Reap is out now and is a nice and trim entry point for the psych-pop singer/songwriter, even if it’s a leftovers comp of sorts. For even more out-there bliss, check out all the rest of his albums, which ramble and sway in the wind in the best way possible. His first album is full of lo-fi delicious bon bons, 16 short songs that hide their hooks in reverb, and now you can have it July 16 from God? The same day, the label releases skate punks Scraper’s first release, a six-song EP with lo-fi, talky, grimy psych-punk with song titles like “Liquid Lips.” Yummy! Look for them both July 16.

 

Alela Diane Readies New LP ‘About Farewell’

alele dianeSometimes you need a good folk record, like eating really healthy food. Alela Diane’s About Farewell, out June 25 on her own label, Rusted Blue Records. I’m a sucker for the first song she’s released from it, called “The Way We Fall.” It’s really two great songs in one, starting with a looping, soulful ballad, painted with intriguing swaths of flute, acoustic guitar and sumptuous harmonies. Then it shifts for a less-orchestrated portion that could have come off as precious if the previous part hadn’t happened; in succession, it serves to peel back the layers and reveal Diane’s lovely lilt, which is soon accompanied by those flutes again. Try not to get the shivers. Diane lives in Portland, but she hails from Nevada City, Calif., so we’ll count her as one of us. Check out an interview Diane did with the Amoeblog a while back.

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These Trails: Off the Beaten Path

Posted by Kelly S. Osato, August 22, 2011 12:00pm | Post a Comment
these trails drag city albuim art cover image acid folk reissue hawaii

I suppose it should go without saying that we here at Amoeba Music thrive on finding hidden gems buried in plain sight, but I'm just gonna go 'head and reiterate said statement, kicking it off with a completely enthused, rustic expression. Oh my lands is the recent reissue of the lost recording/private press These Trails record ever the very boon of my acid folk dreams! Resurfaced, re-pressed and well regarded by the good folks down at Drag City (it seems like I'm always tipping my cap at them, with good reason) this enchanting collection of hallucinatory rambles (circa 1973) is redolent of paradisiacal psychedelia espoused with that patent sundazed acoustic folk sound that forever seems (to my ears anyway) second-nature to native Californian singer-songwriters. However, there is no question that this masterpiece of psych/folk ecstasy could have been conceived anywhere other than its Hawaiian birthplace thus making it a top, if lone, contender for best literal inclusion into one's "deserted island"  fantasy list of music must-haves. The second song on side A, "Our House in Hanalei" being one of the most mana-licious, check it out:

"Our House in Hanalei" - These Trails


With a voice that seems to echo from the same otherworldly well the likes of Melora Creager and Linda Perhacs draw from, Margaret Morgan's melody driven yet free-wheeling vocal style intoxicates as it harmonizes with the smokey vocals of These Trails co-conspirator Patrick Cockett, mixing with their heady, hallucinatory acoustic folk instrumentation - an odd/complex muddling of dulcimer, sitar, tabla, ipu, recorder, electric guitar and then state-of-the-art Arp synth - to spawn a crystal clear yet purple hazy sound-geography that feels all together edge-of-the-map exotic and humbly homespun.

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Joanna Newsom set to reissue Milk-Eyed b-side

Posted by Kelly S. Osato, July 15, 2011 03:05pm | Post a Comment
joanna newsom what we have known vinyl reissue single milk-eyed mender sprout and the bean harp indie freak folk civil war cover art drag city
Ladies, breathe deep against your whalebones for this July 17th marks the release of yet another gorgeous offering of tangible media from Drag City: the reissue of Joanna Newsom's eloquent "bring our troops home" treatise "What We Have Known", the long-playing b-side to the Milk-Eyed Mender's "Sprout and the Bean" single, providing something of a missing-piece link between the material showcased on Newsom's debut release and her epic sophomore effort Ys. This single, pressed into 12" vinyl with what promises to be nothing if not an artfully precious etching on the reverse side, comes housed in a "Civil War-styled jacket" because, well, just because! Get yours at Amoeba asap~!

Death Touring California For First Time Ever

Posted by Amoebite, January 26, 2011 11:29am | Post a Comment

death

When Drag City issued long defunct Detroit band Death's recorded-in-'74 album .. For the Whole World To See, we couldn't keep 'em on the shelves here at Amoeba. Seriously, they were flying outta here like proverbial hotcakes! Thanks to the epic popularity of the first release, for your listening pleasure a set of demos from '74-'76 called Spiritual Mental Physical, is also out now.

And now, for the first time ever, Death will be rocking California -- they have two dates scheduled: Feb 25 at Slim's in San Francisco with Zolar X and Feb 26 at Echoplex in Los Angeles with Sic Alps and RTX! All killer, no filler!

For more about Death, stay tuned to the blog in February, when our Kelly will have a more in-depth post about the band as we celebrate Black History Month!

"Freakin' Out"

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