We are just a few weeks away from Treasure Island Music Festival–have you gotten your ticket yet? The annual festival on the lonely island that sits within the Bay will play host to some major acts including Outkast, alt-J, TV On The Radio, and many more. The two-day event is broken up with a focus on chiller, indie folk, rock on Sunday and animated dance, funk and hip hop music on Saturday. Currently, there are still single-day tickets ($89.50) available for those lucky few that still haven’t gotten on the bandwagon. Check out the full lineup below, and grab tickets here.
Artbeats is a brand new art and performance spectacle happening at the amazing Pier 70 in the Dogpatch, hosted by The Midway and Public Works. The focus of the event is to deliver an inclusive and affordable experience across all genres and mediums for the general public.
Spend the day wandering through a unique art exhibition by local galleries and independent artists. Interact with whimsical large-scale installations and get to know some of the cities best craft vendors and cultural organizations. For the musically-inclined, we’ll have three special performances curated by Overlap, Kevin Earl Taylor and Artbeats. Performers include Bronze, Glenn Jackson, Russell Butler, Exray’s, Aria Rostami, 29th Street Swingtet, Daniel Blomquist, Dan Casey, Manitous and many more.
About a month ago, I checked out the upcoming shows at The Fox Theater and couldn’t believe how many awesome bands were coming through Oakland. I got the chance to see two of them on Saturday Night.
The opening band, Rey Pila, was such a pleasant surprise. I had never seen them live before and have only heard a few songs. They played their 80’s synth inspired music with lots of energy. I immediately recognized one of their singles, “Alexander,” as the lead singer (Diego Solórzano) made his way down the stage and into the photo pit where he sang in his deep David Bowie-like voice to the crowd and security crew. I enjoy watching bands interact with the crowd. It becomes this fun improvisational moment that few expect. Their fun stage presence and big sound made their first performance at The Fox Theater a good one.
On the other hand, Interpol was one of those bands where I wasn’t sure if I needed to see them live. Read More
For those of you who don’t know, Kyle Hollingsworth is somewhat of a living legend. After Jerry Garcia died in ’95, and the Grateful Dead began to slow down, a few key jam bands stepped in to help not only fill the devastating void left behind, but to push forward the new, youthful, and incredibly high-energy style of jam that we know today. Hollingsworth is the famed keyboardist for one of these bands, The String Cheese Incident.
Undoubtedly one of the most popular jam bands in history, String Cheese, along with other jam bands like Widespread Panic and Phish, have developed an wildly dedicated, passionate cult following. Solo, Hollingsworth’s presence and tone radiate through his keyboard, and his live sound is extremely identifiable — the type that can be picked right out of a lineup. He just released his third studio album, Speed of Life, on August 19th and will be releasing three limited edition home brews (crafted by himself) that will be nationally distributed by three renowned breweries from across the country. Read More
Odesza is arguably one of electronic music’s biggest rising acts, and Thursday night the Seattle-based duo showed us why they deserve that distinction with the first of two sold out shows at Mezzanine. Back when we last saw Harrison Mills and Clayton Knight in April, they were already establishing themselves as a solid act to follow, selling out the Independent on the strength of their debut album Summers Gone. Today, Odesza is selling out two days at the larger Mezzanine, months in advance.
A big part of the increased buzz around their music has been the release of the new album In Return. Released September 9th, the album is excellent start to finish, and is definitely one of my personal favorites of 2014. I have described Odesza’s sound in the past as “flowing ambient melodies and electronic beats that are heavy on pitch changes” or like someone remixing the classic New Age compilation Pure Moods. The new album doesn’t stray from their roots, but builds on their skill producing music. The detail on each synth note, custom drum kick and pitch change is impeccable. There is also a new maturity and intensity to the songs, probably most evident in the collaborations with vocal artists, bringing a whole new level of depth to the tracks. Read More
It was a cold August day when all the Bay Area CHVRCHES fans’ hearts were crushed; due to very unfortunate circumstances, they were forced to cancel their performance at this year’s Outside Lands Music Festival. Thursday night at the Fox Theater, the Scottish synth-pop trio performed one heck of a redemption show. Front woman, Lauren Mayberry, expressed the band’s deepest regrets for having to cancel the festival. She graciously thanked all the fans in attendance for their continuous support.
CHVRCHES played a majority of the songs off their debut album, The Bones of What You Believe, including crowd favorites, “Recover,” and “The Mother We Share.” In between the jams, Mayberry opened up to the crowd. She spoke on topics ranging from the Scottish Independence Referendum (happening while they were onstage), to playing their very first show in the United States (it was at the Independent, SF). The conversations made everyone laugh and cheer. The crowd got a sense that CHVRCHES are some really down to earth people. Read More
Dylan Carlson formed Earth in 1989 and became a major figure of Washington drone metal, along with Sunn O))) and Burning Witch. (Check out 1993′s Earth 2: Special Low Frequency Version here). Drone is metal’s answer to ambient music or post-rock; it consists of heavily distorted guitars and overpowering low tones at either very slow tempos, or no tempo at all. The track lengths are astronomical, and they’re usually sans voice, beside the occasional chanting. It’s the perfect soundtrack for contemplating a deep black abyss.
Contemporary composer, Philip Glass, returns with his highly anticipated Days and Nights Festival at the end of this month (September 25–28) with four days of performances in Big Sur and Carmel, CA. The weekend’s events include performances with his cousin and well-regard public radio host, Ira Glass; a screening of the film version of Brian Greene’s “Icarus at the Edge of Time” accompanied by a live performance of Glass’ score conducted by Michael Riesman; an evening of music and spoken word with Glass on piano, spoken word artists Jerry Quickley and Mike Garry, and renowned instrumentalists Tim Fain (vioin), Matt Haimovitz (cello) and Jaron Lanier; and a screening of Visitors, the latest collaboration between Glass and director Godfrey Reggio, accompanied by a live Q&A.
Tickets are currently on sale, and available here: www.daysandnightsfestival.com
The festival—now in its fourth year—is the brainchild of Glass’s non-profit organization The Philip Glass Center’s that is founded on the premise that interdisciplinary collaborations can expand imagination and produce understanding and discoveries beyond what can be accomplished by any individual discipline.
Let it never be said that there was nothing to do in San Francisco. Here are a few of the shows we’re keeping an eye on this weekend:
Friday night pick by Annie:
Eric + Erica at Viracocha
998 Valencia St. SF
Friday 9/5 doors at 8p, $8
w/ Michael Musika, BBQ Bungalow and Hod
Erica’s voice is otherworldly and shockingly beautiful. The first time I saw them perform in Ann Arbor, MI, my chin dropped to the ground. It was a little bit Joan Baez with hints of Ireland and Jenny Lewis, and the ability to resound epically even in whisper. Eric plays eight million instruments. (He’s played with Sean Hayes most notably, as well as a great collaboration with the enchanting Michael Musika who’s sharing the bill.) They are seriously great and also quirky, but comfortably so. The North Carolina duo are passing through SF (their former home) on a month long west coast tour. More dates here, including a return to SF in November at the Independent. Check out their new EP with the gorgeous “What a Fine Day” starting it off:
Saturday night pick by Victoria:
To know him is to love him. MUNDY is one of Irelands most beloved contemporary artists. His single “Galway Girl,” released in 2008, was the #1 most downloaded song in Ireland, ever. It was the most popular single in Ireland for two years. His humble beginnings were busking on the streets of Dublin until a chance meeting presented the opportunity to write a song for Baz Luhrmann’s film adaptation of Romeo + Juliet starring Leonardo DiCaprio. The song, “To You I Bestow”, and his album Jelly Legs, put out by Epic Records, rocketed the 19 year old to a promising career. Mundy has played every stage and festival in Ireland. Watch him, below, perform the iconic “July” live at Oxegen Music Festival. Enjoying Irish success, Mundy found it hard to break away from the gratitude and familiarity of Ireland and has literally never had to made an electronic press kit that would enable him to play to new lands that will love him. However, he is ready now.
Sunday night pick by Bob:
Barcelona at Bottom of the Hill
1233 17th Street, SF
Sunday 9/7, doors 7:30p $12 advance/$14 door
w/ The Young Wild & Midnight Cinema
Barcelona’s brand of electro pop is centered by the groups soulful, gripping vocals and features synth lines and kicks that obviously call back to the 80s. The lyrics and harmonies are front and center, very much like James Blake or SOHN. They also have some pretty delightful covers of songs like ‘Call Your Girlfriend” by Robin and “Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman. Personally I really dig the song “Fall in Love” for its brooding, Miami Vice-esque feel.
Balanced Breakfast, a local music community organization, started less than a year ago with audio engineer Andy Freeman and SF Intercom/ Deli Radio Art Director/ Mutiny Radio DJ Stefan Aronsen getting a burger at Super Duper. After two meetings, Freeman clamored, “We should do this more regularly.” Aronson agreed, though added “It’s not viable for you and I to meet alone … Let’s invite our friends.” This birthed the regular Thursday morning breakfast meetings (at 8am so they know you are serious) of San Francisco music industry enthusiasts, from band managers, singers, writers, engineers, publicists, label execs and through the spectrum. The meetings create a community of shared knowledge, inspiration and a sense of team spirit in tackling issues of what the music scene needs and how it can be provided.
Expecting to max out at 5 or 6 in attendance, the biggest breakfast was 35 and over 200 have attended at one point or another, according to Aronsen. “We decided to do a residency to put to practice all the best practices we’ve talked about at breakfast. PLUS, there are a lot of VERY talented musicians attending each week and we wanted to highlight their skills.” So, Balanced Breakfast is presenting their debut residency showcase at Neck of the Woods EVERY Thursday this September at 8pm. Read More