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2013 Mixtape: 21 Songs for the Time Capsule

Posted by Billy Gil, December 5, 2013 01:31pm | Post a Comment

Just about everyone could agree on “Get Lucky” and “Hold On, We’re Going Home,” but there were lots of other great singles and album cuts released this year. Here are 21 you can download from Amoeba.com right now. Pretty sure these could just top out a 120-minute cassette tape, if my high school calculations are correct. Check out my top 50 albums list, too!

 

kurt vile wakin on a pretty daze amoebaKurt Vile – “KV Crimes”

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Kurt Vile's Wakin on a Pretty Daze is a great, melodically hazy stoner-rock record, but "KV Crimes" hits hard, like a song Tom Petty would kick out in five minutes and decide he was too stoned when he wrote it and leave it on the cutting-room floor for some bullshit like "Free Fallin'." Kurt Vile is like our more enlightened Petty, one who knows that off-the-cuff tracks can be the best.

 

From the album Wakin on a Pretty Daze

 

 

savages silence yourself lp amoebaSavages – “I Am Here”

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Album Picks: Julia Holter, Earl Sweatshirt, Zola Jesus, No Age, Ty Segall, Crocodiles

Posted by Billy Gil, August 20, 2013 09:15am | Post a Comment

Julia Holter - Loud City Song

julia holter loud city song lp amoebaReading about the construction of a Julia Holter album is a bit like reading an art student's honors thesis — one album was built around a Greek tragedy; this one's loosely built around the musical Gigi. Listening, however, is another matter, and Loud City Song might be Holter's most transcendent statement yet. Her voice can come off as icy and ethereal, but on "World," it's firmly grounded and comes through with stunning clarity as she sings of urban melancholia — "what are you wearing? ... I live on the 5th floor of the apartment building ... what am I looking for in you? How can I escape you?" It feels like listening to snippets of phone conversations and thoughts from miles of anonymous citydwellers, while lush horns and harpsichord craft blankets of sound around her. "Horns Surrounding Me" begins with what sounds like someone being chased while she whispers paranoia before launching into a cold, pulsating orchestral pop number. Each of Loud City Song's pieces feels purposeful; you could write at length about each one, like how "He's Running Through My Eyes'" soft movements curl in unexpected ways, or how "In the Green Wild" counters its seemingly carefree, scat-like delivery and standup bass with dread-inducing strings and dark, descending backup vocals. Holter creates her own galaxy on Loud City Song, with each of its songs a strange, spinning planet of sound.

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Kim Free Plays Live at Amoeba Hollywood Oct. 24

Posted by Billy Gil, October 23, 2012 01:15pm | Post a Comment

Kim FreeKim Free produces spacious, dark pop marked by Free’s otherworldly voice, minimalist bass and keyboards, and her striking violin playing, for which she’s been employed on Zola Jesus’ recent tour. As a solo artist, she had a number of limited-run, lo-fi darkwave releases as Black Church before stepping out on her own this year with Angel Shadow, a more starkly naked collection of songs on which Free played every instrument, as she does live. Kim Free plays Amoeba Hollywood Wed. Oct. 24 at 7 p.m. I caught up with Free before the performance.

PST: The construction of your songs is really interesting. It feels very solitary, despite the presence of other instruments in the background. Did you want the songs and the record to have a sort of intimacy? Or is that just the way you play live, and you wanted to capture that on record?

Kim Free Angel ShadowFree: I didn’t really set out with any intentions for this record. I wrote all the songs in my bedroom, based on the instruments I happened to have at the time. When I wrote the record, I was living with a lot of people, and I would always retreat to my room to kill time between work and whatever else, and Angel Shadow is what came out.

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Catching Fever at Los Globos

Posted by Billy Gil, June 26, 2012 11:21am | Post a Comment
Fever Los GlobosFor anyone lamenting the dearth of places to dance in L.A., Fever is your savior. LA Record’s Daiana Feuer recently started the monthly night at Los Globos in Silverlake, hosting a dance party for electronic music that doesn’t fit a specific genre, from psychedelic dance music to alien disco and any number of in betweens. This Tuesday sees performances from heralded local acts LA Vampires and High Places.
 
“Fever is about avant-garde disco, auditory illusions, garage dub tronica, theatrical, ethereal pop, just forward-thinking weird dance music that's almost unclassifiable,” she says.
 
Feuer is the executive editor of LA Record, which since 2005 has ably documented the LA music scene. Fever is just the latest bit of fun from the Cal Arts grad, who also runs The New L.A. Folk Festival, which puts on shows featuring new folk weirdness around the Los Angeles area, including The New LA Folk Fest, the latest of which takes place Aug. 4 at Zorthian Ranch in Altadena.
 
Feuer says her roots are in dance music, having grown up in Florida, but acquired a taste for experimental, psychedelic music experiences while living in California. The aim of Fever is to create a space where the two can live simultaneously, finding a middle place between underground and above ground, she says.
 
“I like music that makes me want to shake my tailfeather but also stirs up my brain,” Feuer says. “I’m really interested in creating experiences. I want people to let loose like children yet also perceive this as conceptual art.”
 
The night involves not only music performances, but also art installations, performance and video art, DJs, confetti, souvenirs, party favors, costumes and toys. Thus far, Fever has involved local talent (musical and otherwise) such as Thelma Houston & Janitor, Busdriver, Pharaohs, Nite Jewel, Hecuba, Dreamers, Butchy Fuego, Moomaw, Young Adults, Diva, PDA, Mor Elian, Alia Penner, Future Eyes, Gifted & Blessed and Captain Ahab. Feuer hopes to open the night to travelling artists and more nights than just one Tuesday a month at Los Globos.
 
This particular evening is exciting for a number of reasons. First of all, LA Vampires put on an insane show. You can even read all about when they opened for Zola Jesus last year in my review of that show.  High Places I’ve also seen a number of times, and their shows and records just get more and more entrancing — can’t wait for their new record, Original Colors, which is set to come out in October on Thrill Jockey. I like the idea of this paring, the cerebral beats of High Places with LA Vampires’ visceral take. Plus, Sodapop from local underground hip-hop label Anticon will be DJing at 10, and I’ll be DJing with Feuer between sets. What could be better than that!

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The Creators Project Brings Two Days of Art & Technology to SF, 3/17 - 3/18

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, March 6, 2012 02:35pm | Post a Comment
Creators Project San Francisco Yeah Yeah Yeahs Zola Jesus

What a perfect love connection! The Creators Project comes to San Francisco—the world’s epicenter of technology and innovation— for a colossal two-day art and technology festival featuring towering multimedia art installations, live music performances, film screenings, and panel discussions. They will be kicking off the 2012 event series with a heck of a weekend celebration on Saturday, March 17th and Sunday, March 18th at the historic Fort Mason. And it's FREE with RSVP!!

Now get a load of the line-up for this weekend of fun:Yeah Yeah Yeahs Karen O Nick Zinner
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
 bring the post-punk rock from beloved creators Nick Zinner and Karen O, fresh off their recent psycho-opera collaboration, Stop the Virgens

Squarepusher debuts his new live show, marking one of his first US performances in more than seven years.

HEALTHThe AntlersZola JesusShabazz PalacesThe Hundred in the Hands, and Teen Daze will also perform, plus an audiovisual spectacle from Chinese punk rock band New Pants alongside visuals from Feng Mengbo’s Bruce Lee VJ Project. 

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