Sunday, September 30, 2007

I Wanna Rock!

You know, there were a lot of shows to see this past September. And, lucky me, I got to see bunches!

My month got off to a soulful start, as I went with my Amoeba alums up to the Hollywood Bowl on a chartered school bus to see the Spinners open for Hall & Oates.

As we drove up, there was a posse of young men walking in with curly dark hair and Oates moustaches, which drew hearty applause from us geeks. The Spinners started up, and everyone knew every song. The dancing was good, although not particularly synchronized (and I'm talking about the well dressed men on stage - maybe they just forgot the moves?). Hall & Oates? Amazing. How Daryl Hall can sing the way he does is a small miracle - talk about blue eyed soul! The show ended somewhat abruptly - there was no encore - and I read later that hall wasn't feeling too hot. Well, you couldn't tell, and evidently I was the only one who was okay with the fact that "Private Eyes" was left off the setlist that night. The Amoeba kids got our section singing an enthusiastic rendition of it to make up for that fact.

Back on the 11th, I was whisked off by my pal Buzz for some Art Brut. He had made me see them at Coachella a couple years ago, and although I thought the album was okay, I fell in love with the live show. This evening was no exception. We bounced happily on the floor while Eddie Argos ranted in his calculated British way about girls, drinking, and Morissey. Among other things. I LOVE that guy. Brains turn me on, evidently.

The next night was the continuing Buddy residency at the lovely Bordello (formerly Little Pedro's) downtown. Buddy is a star of the local Hotel Cafe crowd, and it was great to see him there out of his element. First on the bill was the lovely Sally Jaye, an Americana singer with more than a touch of Hope Sandoval in her - I swear that if you added more reverb to some of her songs, you'd have Mazzy Star. Her voice is beautiful and inviting, and even from the stage she makes you feel like you're her best friend at a cozy dinner.

Everest, local sensitive rockers, rounded out the bill with intensely catchy new stuff, previewing their upcoming album. These indie-country-ish guys are heading into quite an October... The Autumn Fest in Big Sir and Neil Young's revered Bridge School benefit concerts are next on their list, with a new full length any second. (photo by Shayna Peveler)

And then... Justin Timberlake.

I have to say, I expected much more screaming from the young ladies present. I think there was more of a commotion when the Beckhams arrived than during the show. The audience was having a blast - don't get me wrong. I just remember seeing Duran Duran in 1982 and not being able to hear a goddamn thing.

Raquel and I had very, very good seats. Justin's concert-in-the-round concept worked in our favor, as we saw an awful lot of the kid. He put on a great show. Really great. Just enough dancing, real live singing, and oodles of charm. Oh yea, and Timbaland did the intermission music, as it were. And Kanye West dropped in. (OK, I sort of lost my shit at that moment.)

(This video was taken by someone sitting very close to us, because I essentially saw the same thing. Total coolness.)

Me, Kevs, the BFF, Giselle and Skye were all supposed to see the White Stripes that week, but Meg fell apart. I know how you feel, Meg - hang in there!

So we wiped our tears and went on... to the Arcade Fire and LCD Soundsystem show at the Bowl. LCD was a blast - but I think I would have liked it better in a sweaty club after a few drinks. I felt too detached from the party. Even the new tracks were fun - as they had taken some getting used to for me when I got the record.

Arcade Fire are legendary for their live shows, and deservedly so. The intensity and joy they project from the stage can't help but affect the audience. I hadn't seen them since the release of "Neon Bible," a record I think is lovely but on the dour side, so I wondered how it would come across live. Well, lovely and dour. The energy of the night came, more often than not, from the older material, and there was plenty of singing and dancing for all. And headbanging, screaming, laughing, clapping, etc...

On the 21st, it was Cat Power. The first two times I'd seen her, she ran off the stage in tears, apologizing for sucking. It was heartbreaking. I wouldn't buy tickets to her shows anymore, since she never seemed to go through with them anyway. But at Coachella two years ago, I caught some of her new and improved set, and it was good. So I was only too happy to go with Kevs and Skye to see her at the Avalon with her Dirty Delta Blues Band. She did loads of covers - both from her covers album as well as her upcoming covers album, and she sort of did covers of her own music... All of her own sings which she performed had been almost completely re-arranged, rendering them practically unrecognizable unless you figured out the lyrics right away. It could be both frustrating and amazing, and I applaud her courage to do that. She sounded amazing, was happy and joking with the crowd, and played a great show. See? There's a reason I love cats.

That Saturday, I went to Safari Sam's to check out Sally Jaye again. She was playing a benefit which was hosted by the of the five Kids in The Hall: Dave Foley, Bruce McCullough, and Kevin McDonald. I LOVED Kids in The Hall. Between each band set, they guys would do a couple skits. They'd fuck up and laugh, they'd improve, but mostly, they were hilarious. Those guys are genius, no matter what they do, it seems. I left after seeing a rocking set by Brian Wright and the Waco Tragedies, more rough and tumble Americana stuff which had Dave Foley up in front hootin' and hollerin'.

The following week, there was a great freebie show at Hollywood and Highland - if you took the subway. The subway? In L.A.? Damn straight. Ladytron and Great Northern played in the central courtyard area for the car-free and those with cars, if you wanted to stand up on the walkways, as many people did. Great Northern represented - Rachel's voice was beautiful as always, their indie only adding to the blue twilight atmosphere of the evening. When the sun was finally down, Ladytron came on, lights blazing and synthesizers synchronized. Oh, there are lots of other instruments too, but you really notice those keyboards, don't you?

And finally, winding up the month, DeVotchka. I'd be in love with Nick Urata, the dramatic lead singer of the group, if he didn't take the whole hobo/gypsy thing so literally. He looks like he just rolled out of the back of a train half the time, bottle of red wine in one hand and guitar in the other. It's quite charming, and they mesmerize me with that whole mariachi-spaghetti western-polka-gypsy musical styling. How can you argue with a band that uses tuba and cello and trumpet and accordian as well as the standard bass-guitar-drum combo? Not me, that's for sure.

Now to head into Rocktober! After I get some sleep.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

And Where Have YOU Been?

Dude, I went out of town for a bit.

Those last couple weeks of August and early September, I was in either Ephrata, Pennsylvania or the Bay Area. (You may have noticed that I get to the Bay Area as often as I can.)

My brother and I were off to PA to see the relatives. Ephrata is a tiny town (by my urban/suburban standards) with a tiny little main street and lots of horse & buggies. You see, it's in Pennsylvania Dutch country, which means Amish. The surrounding towns have names like Intercourse, Paradise, Virginville and Blueball (my brother and I were very sad to learn the Blueball Hotel had been torn down). The grocery store by my aunt and uncle's house is have paved for cars and half hitching posts for horses.

We spent most of our time with relatives, but did have one particularly interesting afternoon at a big weekly flea market which features Amish food (baked goods, jams, etc) and the regular cheapie t-shirts and stuff, as well as a section for animals. Evidently there are livestock auctions earlier in the day, and at the end of the day when we were there, you could have your choice of available chickens, quails, pigeons, geese, doves, hamsters, rabbits and guinea pigs. My brother and I have a particular fondness for bunnies and guinea pigs as we've owned both. Most of these animals were crammed by the dozens in cages (the birds) and cardboard boxes (the rodents) so we'd open them up and have a look. I spotted a guinea pig on the bottom of the pile that looked like one we used to have, so I reached in to give it a pet when the other 5 or so scurried off, kicking this one wildly in the process. It didn't budge. Revealed, I noticed it was pretty dead. I went to tell the kid who seemed to be running the show at the moment, but he just sort of shrugged while the little kids nearby ran to check out the dead thing in the box. Guinea pigs aren't the brightest creatures on the planet, and it's more than possible the others smothered it. But still... Well, my brother took plenty of pictures and we're liberal california folk, so those pictures will make it into the right hands.

It just reminded me that there are alot more than just miles separating us from the folks in that small town.

I did enjoy the homemade ice cream (made from real Amish cows!)and whoopie pies - the pumpkin ones will leave a permanent mark on my taste buds, in the best way.

And I did enjoy my relatives an awful lot too.

Then a quick trip to the Bay to see a couple long lost friends and have lots of time doing boring girl stuff, like shopping and eating and chatting. Although it was definitely not boring, especially if you knew us girls.

So I'm back and settled in, and promise to be "regular."

Friday, September 14, 2007

Little Radio Playlist 9/13/07

Did you wanna know what went down? Well, here ya go...

We had special guests tonight... the amazing and unique DENGUE FEVER!

Little Radio Playlists

Alimony - The Hummingbirds
You're No Good - Swinging Blue Jeans
One Man - Eulogies
I Don't Care - The Pictures
You Made Me Like It - 1990s
Southside Funk - Soul Seven
Escape From Dragon House
Tooth & Nail
? (a cover of a Cambodian song)
One Thousand Tears of A Tarantula
Hong Kong Garden - Siouxsie & the Banshees
Tthhee Ppaarrttyy - Justice
Miss Lucifer - Primal Scream
Disaster - The Besnard Lakes
Everything I've Got - Ed Kuepper
Ain't That Crazy - Derrick Morgan
You're Like Heaven to Me - Phyllis Dillon
Pony express - The Pioneers
Soul Revival - Zap Pow
Beautiful Day - Spider Harrison
Be For Real - Marlena Shaw
Buick Mackane - T. Rex
I Can Only Give you Everything - Van Morrison
The Way She Goes - Henry's Dress

Remember, Little Most Thursdays from 8-10 PST, 11pm EST, 5am Fridays in Berlin and 3pm Fridays in Sydney...

Download it once it's online Or email Little Radio and tell 'em to get that shit posted!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Little Radio Playlist 9/6/07

Gettin' around to it, gettin' around to it...

Dap Walk - Ernie & the Top Notes, Inc.
Sometimes I Feel So Lonely - Primal Scream
Jesus Is Just Alright - The Byrds
Ride Or Die - The Budos Band
Tighten Up Tighter - Billy Ball & the Upsetters feat. Roosevelt Matthews
Sleeping During the Day - The Mint Chicks
Breakin' My Own Heart - Uni & Her Ukelele
Well Well Well - Le Tigre
Catcher - Komeda
Disorder - Joy Division
Hey You - Sarabeth Tucek
My Own Blood - Luther Russell
Terrified - Trevor Childs
Birthday - Sugarcubes (w/ Jesus & Mary Chain)
Fire Fire Fire - Dappled Cities
Circles - Le Fleur De Lys
I'll Keep Holding On - The Action
Green Eyes - Husker Du
Hot Dog! That Made Him Mad - Wanda Jackson
He'd Be A Diamond - Mary Lou Lord
Cactus Cat - Look Blue Go Purple
Girl Don't Come - Sandie Saw
hat's How It Goes - The Breakaways
Brunettes Against Bubblegum Youth - The Brunettes
I've Just Seen A Face - The Dillards
Kingdom Of The Animals - Iron & Wine
Nausea - X
The Thang (Pt. 1) - Eddie Bo
South Side of the Street - Johnny Adams
Kissing My Love - Cold Blood
California Stars - Billy Bragg & Wilco

Remember, Little Most Thursdays from 8-10 PST, 11pm EST, 5am Fridays in Berlin and 3pm Fridays in Sydney...

Download the shows here! We're kinda behind, but there are some nice older ones...