Show Preview: Molly House Records @ AKBAR

The queer dance party hits LA

April 24th, 2017
Lex Voight
Category: Review

Looking for great DJ’s, a community, or a kickass dance party? Molly House Records is having an Album Release party on 4/29.

Continue reading…

Show Review: Empire of the Sun @ The Shrine

Antipodeans awe and amaze Angelenos

Lesley Park
Category: Lead Story, Review

Coachella 2017 came and went, and with it came this year’s iteration of Localchella, a series of concerts in and around the LA area featuring some of the acts set to grace one of the many stages at the world’s premiere desert festival. Last Wednesday at The Shrine marked the Antipodean invasion with New Zealand’s Broods and Australia’s Empire of the Sun taking a brief hiatus from the sweltering Indio sun to dazzle Angelenos in between the festival’s two weekends.

Continue reading…

Lana Del Rey Releases New Single ft. The Weeknd

Listen to the first feature of her discography!

April 20th, 2017
Zein Khleif
Category: News

Lana Del Rey has debuted the title track off of her upcoming album, Lust for Life. The new song, featuring The Weeknd, premiered on Mistajam’s BBC 1 radio show on Wednesday. “Lust for Life” comes two months after the reveal of Del Rey’s first single, “Love,” from her soon to be released LP.
Continue reading…

Hans Zimmer Announces Summer World Tour

Legendary composer coming to The Shrine 8/11

April 19th, 2017
Mary Bonney
Category: News

After working as a tour guide of Hollywood movie studios for the past five years, I’ve spent countless hours explaining how a score can elevate every kind of film. A composer can emphasize dramatic moments, underscore emotional scenes and heighten exciting action or adventures sequences with the perfect music. Legendary composer Hans Zimmer has created some of the most powerful, memorable scores in cinematic history and this summer is taking his incredible music on a worldwide tour.

This past weekend, Coachella was treated to a peak at what the world renowned composer has in store for crowds this summer. Check out his performance of Inception featuring Nile Marr at Coachella (his set begins around the 1:30 mark):

“I am overwhelmed by the response to our Coachella performance this past weekend,” Zimmer said. “It was certainly nerve inducing to perform at a festival of this level with so many amazing artists who are household names, but the crowd who came to our set was unlike anything I have experienced with an orchestral performance before. I can’t wait to see the rest of the crowds this summer on tour.”

Music fans will be able to see Zimmer lead a full orchestra this summer at arenas around the world. The concert will be in two parts: the first being some of Zimmer’s classic movie scores including Gladiator, The Lion King and The Pirates of the Caribbean. The second will feature re-imagined versions of some classic scores such as The Dark Knight Trilogy and of course, Inception, with special guests from the rock and pop world.

The US leg will kick off in Dallas, TX  on July 13th with the penultimate stop being here in Los Angeles at The Shrine on August 11th. Tickets are available now, so don’t miss the opportunity to see some of the most moving music for film performed by the brilliant composer himself.

Hans Zimmer Tour Dates:
4/21 – Las Vegas, NV @ The Park Theater
4/29 – Auckland, New Zealand @ Vector Arena
5/2 – Sydney, Australia @ Qudos Bank Arena
5/4 – Melbourne, Australia @ Rod Laver Arena
5/6 – Brisbane, Australia @ Brisbane Entertainment Centre
5/10 – Perth, Australia @ Perth Arena
5/16 – Helsinki, Finland @ Hartwall Arena
5/18 – Stockholm, Sweden @ Ericsson Globe
5/20 Oslo, Germany @ Forum Copenhagen
5/22 – Copenhagen, Denmark @ Royal Arena
5/24 – Leipzig, Germany @ Arena Leipzig
5/26 – Gdansk, Poland @ Ergo Arena
5/28 – Lodz, Poland @ Atlas Arena
5/30 – Krakow,Czech Republic @ Tauron Arena
6/1 – Budapest, Hungary @ Papp Laszlo Sports Arena
6/2 – Bratislava, Slovakia @ Ondrej Nepela Arena
6/4 – Prague, Czech Republic @ O2 Arena
6/6 – Vienna, Austria @ Stadthalle D
6/9 – Frankfurt, Germany @ Commerzbank-Arena
6/11 – Paris, France @ AccorHotels Arena
6/13 – Dublin, Ireland @ 3Arena
6/15 – London, England @ Wembley Arena
6/16 – London, England @ Wembley Arena
6/17 – Liverpool, England @  Echo Arena
6/18 – Glasgow, Ireland @ Hydro Arena
6/20 – Antwerp, Belgium  @ Sportpaleis
6/21 – Amsterdam, Netherlands @ Ziggo Dome
6/23 – Vienne, France @ Theatre Antique
6/24 – Nimes, France @ Arenes
6/26 – Zurich, Switzerland @ Hallenstadion
6/27 – Zurich, Switzerland @ Hallenstadion
6/29 – Milan, Italy  @ Mediolanum Forum
7/13 – Dallas, TX @ Verizon Theater
7/14 – Houston, TX @ Smart Financial Center
7/16 – Nashville, TN @ Ascend Amphitheatre
7/28 – Atlanta, GA @ Verizon Amphitheatre
7/21 – Columbia, MD @ Merriweather Post Pavilion
7/22 – Philadelphia, PA @ Wells Fargo Center
7/23 – Mashantucket, CT @ Foxwoods Resort Casino
7/25 – New York City, CA @ Radio City Music Hall
7/26 – New York City @ Radio City Music Hall
7/28 – Canadaigua, NY @ Constellation Brands PAC
7/29 – Boston, MA @ Boch Center
7/30 – Montreal, QUE @ Bell Center
8/1 – Toronto, ONT @ Air Canada Centre
8/3 – Cincinnati @ US Bank Arena
8/4 – Chicago, IL @ Allstate Arena
8/6 – Denver, CO @ 1STBANK Center
8/9 – Berkeley, CA @ Greek Theater
8/11 – Los Angeles, CA @ Shrine Auditorium
8/12 – San Diego, CA @ Viejas Arena

For more info on Hans Zimmer:
Official site

Lord Loud Releases New LP, Passe Paranoia

The LA duo shares their first LP, out April 18th

April 17th, 2017
Jillian Goldfluss
Category: News

Lord Loud, the psychedelic garage rock band evocative of early Ty Segall, has a sound much more pervasive than their two-piece group would suggest. Since spontaneously meeting at a party three years ago, Chris Allison and Michael Feld have channeled their mutual affection for dirty, thrashy music into a self-released EP and now their forthcoming full length album, Passé Paranoia.

Continue reading…

Show Review: Miyavi @ The Belasco

The biggest and best from Asia throw it down in LA

Lesley Park
Category: Lead Story, Review

Ask the average Joe walking down the street what he knows about music from Asia and he’s likely to come up with one of two things: manicured and manufactured K-pop or the annoyingly stereotypical–and also kind of racist–Oriental riff. It’s a shame considering the largest continent of the world has produced some truly incredible rock musicians who can more than pull their weight against their more widely recognized American/British counterparts.

One of Asia’s better known, non-pop exports is Miyavi, the self-dubbed “samurai guitarist.” If you’ve seen the way his fingers fly on the fret of his guitar or heard his unique guitar slapping technique, you’d know it’s a monicker he’s more than earned. After making a name for himself as a member of visual kei rock band Dué le Quartz, he’s embarked on a solo career that has taken him all around the world, including an appearance at SXSW and LA’s very own Belasco Theater.

Kicking off the evening was Seoul-based Kiha & The Faces, who in their own marketing swag describe themselves as “witty like Talking Heads, psychedelic like The Doors, and catchy like The Beatles.” The influence of all three is noticeable in the quirky melodies and lyrics that frontman Kiha Chang writes. There are few who could craft a compelling song describing various smells, but you can count Chang among them.

Although they played primarily from their own catalog, they paid an homage to Talking Heads with a slick cover of “Once in a Lifetime” which the crowd enjoyed almost as much as they enjoyed singing “내 사람!” (“my person” in Korean) when the band played “Mine.” Any band who can get an audience to sing foreign phrases wins in my book.

Next up was Thai band Slot Machine, whose catalog I’ll admit to knowing nothing about going in, but who I was pleasantly surprised by. I’ve since learned that they are a huge phenomenon in Thailand with their sights set on breaking into the Western market. It wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest if they proved to be successful. With an arena-caliber sound, Slot Machine was a charismatic force on stage.

While casting the role Mutsuhiro Watanabe for her film Unbroken, Angelina Jolie said, “I had this thought of someone who would have real presence…I thought a rock star.” The moment Miyavi stepped on the stage at The Belasco I could immediately see why she went with him.

Very few artists I’ve seen command the stage the way he does. His rapid yet somehow elegant movements coupled with the sheer skill he possesses on the guitar make it impossible to look away. Even while shredding the riff of “Afraid to Be Cool” like his life depends on it, he takes the time to give the crowd a hair flip and a sly smile.

An unexpected (but surprisingly good) cover of P.O.D.’s “Youth of the Nation” preceded a stylish romp through material from his newer releases (“Firebird” in particular with its anthemic-quality sounded particularly incredible live). Not one for predictability, Miyavi can switch gears into electric renditions of the Mission Impossible opening theme at the drop of a hat. He is a consummate rock star.

In the era of whitewashing controversies and harmful stereotyping of Asians, I can’t tell you how much it means to me on a personal level to have witnessed people who look like me defying those stereotypes on stage. These aren’t just bands who are “pretty good…for Asians.” They are great. Full stop. Props to Live Nation for putting this together and here’s hoping they continue to put on events like this.

More info:

Miyavi

The Rocket Summer Announces Anniversary Tour

Celebrating a decade of “Do You Feel”

April 12th, 2017
Mary Bonney
Category: News

Bryce Avary’s music has long been the soundtrack of my life’s most emotional moments. Avary, also known as The Rocket Summer, has released some of the most uplifting tracks and deep cuts in the emotional rock genre. I interviewed Avary ahead of the release of his most recent album Zoetic, which took a decidedly more experimental rock turn. After appearing at local sing a long hit Emo Nite both here in L.A. and in Dallas, The Rocket Summer announced a nationwide anniversary tour to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the album Do You Feel.

Avary’s third album created memorable piano-infused emotional pop rock tunes like “So Much Love” and the album’s title track. The Rocket Summer shows are packed with unbelievable energy and Avary is known to demonstrate his multi-instrumental talents on top of powerful vocals and poetic lyrics, so this will be a can’t-miss show for fans of this dedicated singer-songwriter.

Pre-sale and VIP packages (which include a meet and great, acoustic performance and a first-pressing vinyl of the album) are on sale today (Wednesday) while general tickets go on sale this Friday.

For more information:

The Rocket Summer

Top Five 80’s-Influenced Groups of the 2010’s

Bright synth pop and dance-ready beats

April 11th, 2017
Mary Bonney
Category: News

A trend that has picked up with more and more frequency during this decade is the wave of 80s-influenced media in TV shows like Stranger Things and The Goldbergs and movie reboots like Ghostbusters. The trend is in music, too; nowhere is a flashback more noticeable, to me at least, than on my Spotify playlist. I’ve always been a fan of indie pop, but lately my favorite bands and newly added artists have the bouncy synths and uptempo beats of the best 1980’s dance tunes and powerhouse ballads. Here are my top five bands that are giving off serious 80’s vibes and will be a rad throwback of a soundtrack to your spring.

5) The 1975

After their 2013 self titled debut featuring slow-burning indie rock cuts, The 1975 moved into the neon-soaked 1980s for their sophomore album. I Like It When You Sleep… featured hypnotizing synth-heavy ballads like “Somebody Else”and “Change of Heart” and dance pop tunes like “Love Me” and the bouncing “The Sound” featuring bright, dancing keys.

4) Jon Bellion

After writing and producing for artists like Jason Derulo and Eminem, Bellion released his 2016 debut album The Human Condition and met with critical acclaim (and landed him on our top 50 albums of 2016). His electronic-friendly music blended R&B, pop and synth-heavy 80 influences and demonstrated staggering vocal control and impressive range. As if his vocal acrobatics weren’t enough to get him on this list, he even wrote an 80’s song about 80’s films.

3) Great Good Fine Ok

The indie pop pair of Luke Moellman (keyboard and keytar) and Jon Sandler (vocals) have released a handful of singles, demonstrating their knack for infectious melodies and 80’s instrumentation. Sandler’s falsetto dances around the poppy, picked guitar and bright keys. Here’s hoping the New York duo has a full release in store!

2) LANY

These LA locals have been steadily release singles since their formation in 2014 and this June they’ll be releasing their debut album. Their discography is packed with 80s influenced electropop and even morose songs like “WHERE THE HELL ARE MY FRIENDS” are still catchy and fun as hell. It’s also hard to top the dance-inducing, upbeat intro to “4EVER!”.

1) Smallpools

If you combined Passion Pit’s Michael Angelakos’s vocals with upbeat, 80’s melodies and beats, you’d have LA indie rockers Smallpools. Last month the band released their debut album LOVETAP! which was filled with upbeat tunes with cheerful lyrics like “Killer Whales” and the irresistibly dance-ready “Dreaming”.