Amoeblog

Cate le Bon Chats With Us Before Her Performance at Amoeba Hollywood April 30

Posted by Billy Gil, April 28, 2014 06:24pm | Post a Comment

cate le bon amoebaWelsh singer-songwriter Cate le Bon produced one of our favorite, underappreciated (well, by those who didn’t hear it) albums of 2013 with Mug Museum. Blending the cool demeanor and husky voice of someone like Nico with jagged post-punk guitars and beats, Mug Museum sounds like a hard-to-place unearthed precious relic, like something whispered into your ear.

She’ll perform at Amoeba Hollywood April 30 at 7 p.m. Before the show, we caught up with le Bon, who recently moved to L.A.

What spurred your move from Wales to Los Angeles?

I have always been intrigued by Los Angeles ever since coming to the city to rehearse with Neon Neon way back when. When the opportunity presented itself to record an album out here, which has always been a dream of mine, it felt like it was time to bite the bullet. Money mouth etc. ...The weather is also a definite perk.

I read that you wrote most of the album in your home country, but I do feel a bit of SoCal sunshine poking through in Mug Museum. Do you think the new locale affected the sound of the album?

It has most definitely seeped into the album, but how, I am not able to say yet. I think that will become apparent to me when I listen back in many years.

cate le bon mug museum lp amoebaIt has to be a huge change. How do you feel playing and recording music here differs from doing so in the U.K.?

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From the Vault: Julia Holter

Posted by Billy Gil, August 29, 2013 05:18pm | Post a Comment

julia holter live at amoebaI interviewed performer Julia Holter a while back, last year when she played at Amoeba Hollywood upon the release of her album, Ekstasis. Now the CalArts-bred experimental pop artist is back with a new album, Loud City Song (available on CD or LP), and it’s one of the year’s best, combining cerebral electro-pop and neo-classical orchestration, with a piano-based, singer-songwriter heart. Read our conversation below about Joni Mitchell, TLC and the vastness of L.A. Make sure to check out Loud City Song and see photos from her performance here.

 

Me: Were you always able to sing growing up, and who were some of your singing idols?

Holter: I didn’t sing much until I was—well I sang in secret—and when I was like 15, I started listening to Joni Mitchell a lot, like her later stuff that’s really cool, not just the early, folk stuff, but the weirder stuff.

Me: Like her jazz records?

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Show Recap: Pretty Lights at Amoeba Hollywood

Posted by Billy Gil, July 19, 2013 11:45am | Post a Comment
Pretty Lights Amoeba Hollywood

The kids came out in full force to see Pretty Lights at Amoeba Hollywood July 18. A decidedly young crowd enthusiastic about the rising EDM star lined every row of the store. It was tough to even get around the kids dancing in every empty space available to them.

Pretty Lights aka Derek Vincent Smith started out by playing “Yellow Bird,” the prettiest and mellowest of songs from his latest album, A Color Map of the Sun. From there, the energy to his nearly hourlong show seemed to grow exponentially.

pretty lights a color map of the sunThough his music squelches and booms like Skrillex, the methods he employs to get there are anything but simple. He composed each part to the new record and had them recorded before sampling and manipulating those sounds. Live, he played with a laptop and series of samplers, not going too crazy on them like Flying Lotus but instead focusing on getting the audience pumped, dancing and encouraging fans to raise their hands, employing judicious breaks to call out to the audience and get them riled up.

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Show Recap: Heloise & the Savoir Faire at Amoeba Hollywood

Posted by Billy Gil, July 11, 2013 01:00pm | Post a Comment

eloise savoir faire amoeba hollywoodElijah Wood aka DJ Jamie Starr began the July 10 set at Amoeba Hollywood playing obscure disco and funk beats from the likes of Benis Letin, Kiki Gyan and Betty Padgett (thank god for Shazam), throwing in a little bit of The Jets and ESG to round it out. Heloise came out dressed in head-to-toe leopard print wrapped in a pink sequined fabric, sounding great despite singing along to just a backing track on “Perelandra,” from her excellent alt-pop album Diamond Dust. “Are you wearing comfortable shoes?” she asked before performing to jagged disco song “Dancefloor Destroyer.” “elijah wood amoeba hollywoodLet the music move you” she sang on the Kylie-ish "Dive In," shimmying around like the alternative diva she is, cooing in exotic ways and then played along on an iPhone-based electric organ — no one rocks an app-based instrument like Heloise! On the last song, “Vibezz,” she whipped around her microphone wire to the song’s slow synth chords and pumped her fist when the beat picked up, belting over the backing track and owning the stage with her one-woman show.

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Show Recap: Quadron at Amoeba Hollywood

Posted by Billy Gil, June 7, 2013 12:00pm | Post a Comment

Quadron AMoeba HollywoodPerforming as a five-piece, Quadron began by starting the sutble groove of “LFT,” a highlight of their recently released Avalanche album. Singer Coco O emerged to give the song its ascendant melody. They quadron avalanchemoved into the funky “Favorite Star,” and Coco said it was a “dream come true” to be playing Amoeba. They kept things mellow, playing the sultry and emotional “Sea Salt,” one of the softer songs on Avalanche, which Coco said was one of her favorites on the album. They called out hero Michael Jackson for “Neverland,” possibly named after the King of Pop’s ranch home, while the music calls to mind smooth Jackson jams, such as “Man in the Mirror.” They finished the quick, soft set with “It’s Gonna Get You,” which nicely featured the band’s backup harmonies over the song’s mechanical groove. See more photos of the show here.

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