Amoeblog

The 20 Best Shoegaze Albums

Posted by Billy Gil, March 7, 2014 06:21pm | Post a Comment

Islowdivenspired by the reunion of shoegaze greats Slowdive, Amoeblogger Brad Schelden and I have compiled our list of favorite shoegaze albums.

For any who don’t know, shoegaze is a style of music rooted in the noise pop of The Jesus & Mary Chain and dream pop of Cocteau Twins from the early ’80s. In the late ’80s and early ’90s, bands took elements put forth by those bands—loud, distorted guitars, heavily reverbed vocals and emphasis on atmosphere over discernable lyrics—and came up with a new sound, first truly realized by My Bloody Valentine on their classic 1988 album, Isn’t Anything. Shoegaze (or shoegazing) was a term NME and Melody Maker in the U.K. used to describe the visual representation of the sound from bands who rose in My Bloody Valentine’s wake, depicting bands’ apparent lack of movement onstage and propensity to stare down at their numerous effects pedals. The genre hit its heyday in the early ’90s but persists today, with bands like My Bloody Valentine and Swervedriver reuniting and artists like M83 and Diiv using elements of their sound (so-called nu-gaze, but I’ll avoid that terrible term). So with that lengthy explanation, here we go.

Continue reading...

Albums Out April 9: The Knife, Kurt Vile and More

Posted by Billy Gil, April 9, 2013 10:54am | Post a Comment

Album Picks:

The Knife - Shaking The Habitual

The Knife Shaking the HabitualCD $12.98

Deluxe CD $19.98

LP $27.98

As always, The Knife mean to disturb and provoke you, and Shaking the Habitual is their most adventurous statement to date. They begin the two-disc set with one of the more pop-oriented pieces — of course, The Knife’s defintion of pop involves alien distortion on Karin Dreijer Andersson’s vocals, which are growly and swoop in and out of conventional melodicism to begin with. On “A Tooth for an Eye,” it’s fairly typical, if highly accomplished, fare for The Knife, as Andersson’s warped vocals match her and Olaf Dreijer’s tribal beatwork and synths that bellow and squelch like steam machinery. This in no way prepares you for the set’s second song, the nine-minute “Full of Fire,” whose machine-gun beats are the accessible part of a demonic pop song in which synths bleep atonally like tea kettles and swirl like locusts, while Andersson’s vocals sound like they’ve been run over by tires full of syringes. Even with its mammoth run-time and demanding sound, it never falters in fascinating and keeping a fanged vice grip on the listener. You feel your hair stand on end and you start to sweat with each new turn. “A Cherry on Top” starts with five minutes of wraithlike synths before Andersson comes in with a digitally deepened voice in a sort of gender, culture, genre-bending near 10 minutes that’s both bewildering and bold. Of course The Knife’s freaky sounds can be grating or seemingly unusual for the sake of it sometimes — I opened a hotel website with a man singing in Hawaiian during the flute-laden “Without You My Life Would Be Boring” and didn’t notice for a full minute — and pieces like the nearly silent, nearly 20-minute “Old Dreams Waiting to Be Realized” are more interesting in concept and as a breather than they are in actual sound. But Shaking the Habitual harkens back to a time when albums were meant to be an experience, something puzzled over, abandoned and returned to and studied, not streamed while searching for hotels. It’s anti-pop, but claims that it is “unlistenable” are unfounded. Even at nearly 10 minutes and with truly messed up sounds housed within in, “Raging Lung” is a pop song, with movements and parts that hit you and break through the din — when Andersson keeps coming in with her “that’s when it hurts” line ranks among the best pop moments on the album. “Networking” drops vocals almost entirely in favor of a Kraftwerkian cold synth rave-up, and it ends up one of the album’s catchiest songs in the process. “Stay Out Here” also features guest vocals from Light Asylum’s Shannon Funchess and artist Emily Roysdon that make the song a kind of horror house anthem as the singers’ vocals bounce off one another and come together in eerie harmony in a padded cell of wavelike synths and skittering beats. The Knife make many demands on you — of your time, of your patience and of your willingness to let go of preconceived notions of pop — on Shaking the Habitual. Trust them — you’ll emerge from the experience feeling as though you’ve gained a new understanding of what pop music can be. Few artists alive today can claim the same effect.

Continue reading...

FYF Fest Tickets on Sale at Amoeba Hollywood!

Posted by Billy Gil, June 19, 2012 06:30pm | Post a Comment
FYF posterAs you may have already heard, FYF Fest announced its lineup for this year’s fest, which takes place Sept. 1st and 2nd at LA State Historic Park in Downtown Los Angeles, and it’s incredible: M83, Dinosaur Jr., Atlas Sound, Beirut, Chromatics, Liars, The Vaselines and Yeasayer, just to name a few. That’s all not to mention local heroes like The Soft Pack, FIDLAR, Warpaint, The Growlers, Nick Waterhouse and a whole lot more.
 
Amoeba Hollywood will be selling tickets starting Friday, June 22nd, at 5 p.m. (tickets are $77, and service fees are only $4 when you buy at Amoeba). Amoeba will have ONLY general admission weekend passes (not VIP tix). There’s a limited number of tickets and they’re only available at that price for a limited time, so get them quickly.
 
LINEUP:

AA Bondy
Aesop Rock
Against Me!
American Nightmare
Atlas Sound
Paul Banks (Interpol)
Baroness
Beirut
Black Dice
Black Mountain
Ceremony
Chairlift
Chromatics
Cloud Nothings
Converge
Cursive
Dam Funk
Desaparecidos
Devin
Dinosaur Jr.
DJ Coco (Primavera Sound)
DJ Harvey
Doldrums
Father John Misty
FIDLAR
Fucked Up
Future Islands
Givers
Gold Panda
Health
Hot Snakes
I Break Horses
James Blake
John Maus
Joyce Manor
King Khan & the Shrines
Kishi Bashi
Liars
Lightning Bolt
M83
Moonface
Nick Waterhouse
Nite Jewel

PAPA
Purity Ring
Quicksand
Redd Kross
Refused
Sandro Perri
Simian Mobile Disco (Live)
Sleigh Bells
Tanlines
The Allah La's
The Field
The Growlers
The Men
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
The Soft Pack
The Suicide of Western Culture
The Vaselines
Tiger & Woods
Turbonegro
Twin Shadow
Two Gallants
Tycho
Warpaint
White Arrows
White Fence
Wild Flag
Wild Nothing
Yeasayer


Continue reading...

Win Tickets to the Sold Out 2012 Coachella

Posted by Amoebite, February 29, 2012 03:15pm | Post a Comment
Spring is around the corner which means it's time for our hotly anticipated, wildly popular Coachella contest! Amoeba.com is giving away a pair of tickets to the April 20-22 weekend where you can see over 150 bands in the sunny California desert including The Black Keys, Radiohead, Dr. Dre & Snoop Dogg, Bon Iver, Florence + the Machine, Pulp, Mazzy Star, and M83. Both weekends are way sold out so this may be your last chance to score tickets. 

Enter our Coachella contest here.

Coachella Lineup 2012

Amoeba Hollywood's Top 100 Albums of 2011

Posted by Amoebite, January 5, 2012 06:40pm | Post a Comment
Here are the Top 100 Best Sellers at Amoeba Hollywood in 2011:

Adele
1. Adele
21
Columbia


Release Date: 2/22/2011
Foster the People 2. Foster the People
Torches
Columbia 


Release Date: 5/23/2011
Radiohead 3. Radiohead
King of Limbs
TBD Records


Release Date: 3/29/2011
Mumford & Sons

4. Mumford & Sons
Sigh No More
Glass Note

<<  1  2  >>  NEXT