New Preorders: Ty Segall, Muse, Bat For Lashes, Taylor Swift and More

Posted by Billy Gil, September 19, 2012 04:50pm | Post a Comment
flying lotusFlying LotusUntil the Quiet Comes – Oct. 2
The latest from the L.A. sound maestro features contributions from Erykah Badu, Laura Darlington, Niki Randa, Thundercat and Thom Yorke.


the vaccinesThe VaccinesCome of Age – Oct. 2
The second album from the NME-touted Brit punks.

MuseMuseThe Second Law – Oct. 2
The Britpop group turned arena rockers’ next album may have an electro edge, given its first single, “Madness.”

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(Wherein Spring Fever takes over the jukebox.)

Posted by Job O Brother, March 28, 2011 04:25pm | Post a Comment
80's keyboard

Well my little dreamlets, we’re ten days into Spring, and it’s already clear to me what music is going to carry me through into Summer – it’s all about synthetics. Synthpop, that is, of the late 70’s and early 80’s variety.

This amuses me, because for much of my life I detested a lot of the music I’m going to celebrate here. A lot of the hatred stemmed from being so unhappy in the 1980’s; by association, the music “sounded” like unhappiness. Think of it this way: When was the last time you were taking a shower and felt like listening to the soundtrack to Psycho? Exactly.

Some say that synthpop began when Giorgio Moroder teamed up with Donna Summer and created the hit single "I Feel Love." Calling this the “start” of synthpop is convenient, but an over-simplification, because so much came before that informed it. What can be said is that the song was influential, both in terms of inspiring artists who would go on to develop the synthpop genre, and give mainstream audiences a taste for it.

What follows are some synthpop songs that bring me joy. Many can be claimed by other sub-genres of music, but they're all related. Some are guilty pleasures – the sonic equivalent to a Snickers bar, in that they are bad for me, but make me feel great for the duration I’m imbibing – and others I stand by as solid accomplishments. I’m also putting a spell on them: listening to these songs will make you feel a little ticklish in the deepest part of your brain, which will result in your not hating your fellow man as much (even though they totally deserve your hate). Enjoy!

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(In which I celebrate four years of rad love.)

Posted by Job O Brother, January 10, 2011 03:53pm | Post a Comment
gay america
Today the boyfriend and I celebrate the fourth anniversary of our first seeing each other’s faces. Upon awakening this morning, we each remarked that it hasn’t felt like four years, but shorter. In part this could be because we have so much fun together, but it also helps that the season-less weather of LA makes everything feel like one, very long year.

It was music that brought us together, which is funny when you consider we often have such different tastes. For instance, he thinks cranking some Tori Amos while taking a hot bubble bath is swell, while I find the very idea akin to suicide; when curling up with a good book, I like to listen to some classical lieder, an past-time he would typically describe as “poop-facey.”

Our first connection was made on Friendster. You young ‘uns won’t know anything about this, but long, long ago – before there was Facebook (yes, it’s true!) – there was a site called Friendster, which amounted to about the same thing: letting you maintain the illusion that you’re “in touch” with everyone you care about and simultaneously allowing you to seek out companionship with strangers based on what movies/music they list as liking.

“He’s a surgeon who looks like a young George Clooney but oh – I could never date a guy who likes 311 and Matrix Reloaded. Our babies would have webbed feet.”

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out this week 5/12 & 5/19...tori amos...iron & wine...true blood...jarvis cocker...bricolage...

Posted by Brad Schelden, May 21, 2009 12:40pm | Post a Comment
six feet under cast
When I first moved to Los Angeles 7 or 8 years ago I became obsessed with Six Feet Under. I remember going to work one day and one of my coworkers talked about the show for hours. She couldn't believe that I was not watching it. However, I didn't have HBO and I don't think the show was out on DVD yet. I didn't even have a DVD player yet. VHS releases of TV shows were starting to disappear so I didn't really have any way to watch it-- so it might have been Six Feet Under that made me finally give in and get a DVD player. My first DVD purchase was The Muppet Movie, but I think my second or third purchase was the first season of Six Feet Under. It had been a while since I had been obsessed with a really good TV show. I still managed to watch the entire Twin Peaks series about once a year, but there wasn't much else out there. It was just that I didn't have HBO. I had heard about all these new shows, but still had never watched Oz or the Sopranos. These shows would later become some of my favorites as I started to collect the DVDs and eventually was forced to get HBO again. I don't want to sound like an advertisement for HBO, but it really did change the way I looked at TV and really gave me many enjoyable viewing hours. Six Feet Under came at a perfect time in my life. The show took place in the Los Angeles area and was filmed just down the street from Amoeba at the Gower studios. I somehow felt the show was speaking directly to me. And I somehow felt more involved with it since it was filmed so close to me and took place in a city so close to my heart. It was also nice to see a gay character as one of the lead roles in a drama series. I have always had a love/hate sort of relationship with Los Angeles, but this show made me love it just a little bit more. The five seasons of the show took me on a long and intense journey. I fell in love with all the characters and started to think of them as my family. The show followed me back to San Francisco, where it eventually ended in 2005. This was one of those shows that I really did love but it also just sort of tortured me when I watched it. Not only was every episode dealing with somebody's death, but it was also dealing with all the characters' messed up lives at the same time. It was an intense journey. The thing that made this show so fantastic was the cast. The mix of the brilliant writing with the perfect cast was a magical combination -- and it doesn't really happen that often. The leads were all perfect. Peter Krause, Michael C. Hall, and Lauren Ambrose were perfect as the siblings of the house. Frances Conroy was brilliant as their mother. The show just had a list of some of my favorite or soon to be favorite actors -- Rachel Griffiths, Freddy Rodriguez, Jeremy Sisto, Lili Taylor, Kathy Bates, Richard Jenkins, Rainn Wilson, Justin Theroux, Mena Suvari, Veronica Cartwright, Illeana Douglas, and Catherine O'Hara. And Patricia Clarkson and Joanna Cassidy were nothing short of brilliant as the aunt and mother in law. I wish they could have been in every episode, I don't think any TV show will ever get a better cast...although Mad Men comes very close.

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What I Listened to Most in 2008

Posted by Miss Ess, January 1, 2009 04:23pm | Post a Comment
Since I write about what I listen to fairly often, this list may be a bit redundant, but consider it a happy round up! This is what was getting to me the most in 2008, whether it was released in 2008 or 1974, whether I'd heard it a zillion times before or it was something new to my ears.

Rodriguez - Cold Fact

Bonnie Prince Billy - Lie Down in the Light

Bobby Charles - s/t

Sun Kil Moon - "Glenn Tipton" from Ghosts of the Great Highway

Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers - "Islands in the Stream"

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