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Weekly Roundup: Zola Jesus, Tulips, Ruiins, Whirr, together PANGEA, Terry Malts, White Arrows, Babes

Posted by Billy Gil, August 29, 2014 11:21am | Post a Comment

Zola Jesus – “Dangerous Days” video

zola jesus taiga lpFor the video to “Dangerous Days,” from her upcoming album Taiga (out Oct. 7, preorder here), Zola Jesus and director Tim Saccenti take us into the literal landscapes that Zola Jesus’ music often evokes, from chilly arctic lakes to lush forests. It’s a gorgeous video that suits such an inspiring pop song. (Judging by the credits on YouTube, it looks like it was at least partially filmed in Washington’s Olympic National Park; guess we’ll have to book our tickets to go there ASAP.)

 

Tulips – “Hotspur” & “Wait”

tulips bandTulips are a self-described riotgaze trio from L.A. that trade off powerful female vocals over effected surf riffs and new wave beats, like if Lush were reborn as L.A. punks with a shit ton of attitude, or if Bikini Kill got hip to tremolo and reverb. They’ve got a two-song cassingle (!) out now, can you can hear both songs here. Look for it in the Amoeba cassingle section!  See 'em tonight at Pehrspace with Roses for their cassingle release party.

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Weekly Roundup: Zola Jesus, LA Font, Joel Jerome, Woods, Cold Beat

Posted by Billy Gil, June 27, 2014 11:18am | Post a Comment

Zola Jesus – “Dangerous Days”

zola jesus ameobaIt’s been three years since Zola Jesus aka Nika Rosa Danilova’s last album of new material, 2011’s terrific Conatus. The first taste of her new album, Taiga (due Oct. 7 on Mute), shifts further away from her early goth-noise material and builds on the more pop-oriented sound she’s shifted toward since the Stridulum EP, singing clearly and boldly over a dance-pop beat but with the same paralyzing strength her voice has always commanded. It’s startlingly different but sure-footed and sounds as brilliant as anything she’s done, leaving us dying to hear the rest of what’s in store with Taiga, which was co-produced in her newly adopted home of L.A. Dean Hurley (who’s worked with David Lynch and Danger Mouse, among others).

 

LA Font – “Motor Rally”

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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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