Show Review: Imagine Dragons @ The Forum

Smoke & Mirrors tour brings LA theatrical pop rock

July 27th, 2015
Mary Bonney
Category: Review
Imagine Dragons

Last Friday night, fans of all ages packed The Forum to see theatrical pop rock at its finest. Imagine Dragons’ Smoke and Mirrors Tour brought a stadium-sized performance to Inglewood with a set filled with upbeat dance anthems and thunderous rock and roll songs.
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Album Review: Tame Impala – Currents

Kevin Parker’s graduation to the big leagues

Jay Chirinos
Category: Lead Story, Review
Tame-Impala_Kevin15

I recently re-read my review of Tame Impala’s show at The Fonda Theatre back in 2012 and noticed something of a patronizing tone that I tried but failed to hide. That was mainly due to my bafflement of the reception for Lonerism, a perfectly decent but heavily derivative album that saw its creator Kevin Parker treated as the second coming in the world of psychedelic rock. The judgement struck me as both reductive and misguided, and as I watched the band go through their paces in front of a sold-out crowd, their appeal still evaded me.
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Review: David Gray & Amos Lee @ The Hollywood Bowl

Heartfelt music with LA Philharmonic Orchestra

July 22nd, 2015
Mary Bonney
Category: Review
David Gray

Last weekend, Amos Lee and David Gray treated The Hollywood Bowl to back-to-back nights of beautiful music, and I was lucky enough to catch Friday’s performance. As if the summer night under the stars at the historic venue wasn’t beautiful enough, the LA Philharmonic Orchestra accompanied both of the first-class artists, resulting in unforgettable performances by both.
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Review: The Chemical Brothers – Born In The Echoes

A long-awaited new release from big-beat legends

July 16th, 2015
Lesley Park
Category: Lead Story, Review
the chemical brothers

Few acts have a knack for producing consistently stellar albums over the course of two-plus decades, but Tom Rowlands and Ed Simons, AKA The Chemical Brothers, can undoubtedly be counted among them. Throughout their seven-album history, they’ve produced some of the most enduring electronic anthems of all time, ranging from the luscious dreamscapes of “Star Guitar” to the brash explosiveness of “Galvanize.” Perhaps most impressively, their songs have a proven track record of holding up stupidly well against the test of time.
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Film Review: Tuff Luck

’80s band that almost made it makes documentary

July 15th, 2015
Anthony Marks
Category: Review
Tuff luck

Monday night, I had the pleasure of attending the Hollywood premiere of the movie Tuff Luck, a documentary about the late-80s band called, yep, you guessed it, Tuff Luck. Band members, roadies, friends, family, and fans were in attendance, and the screening took place at the Vintage Los Feliz Theater, which added a nice, intimate touch to the evening, but the film itself was 97 minutes of nostalgia overcast with a gloomy tone. Not surprising, though. I mean, the movie is about the “band who never made it,” so it’s destined to be a little sad right from the start.
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Show Review: Death Cab For Cutie @ Hollywood Bowl

Washington-based indie favorites hit The Bowl

David Fisch
Category: Lead Story, Review
DCFC Hollywood Bowl Featured

It’s rare for me to see a group or artist that performs better live than they do on their studio recordings. Well, okay, maybe that does happen fairly regularly, but what I mean is that it’s rare when, after a group or artist has released numerous studio albums of which I can really only claim to love maybe one or two, they can take songs from albums I didn’t really care for and make them better right before my eyes. I see the group perform the songs I’m on the fence about or not too familiar with, and they become exponentially better alongside the songs I already love.
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Album Review: Miguel – Wildheart

Young R&B star continues to beguile

July 13th, 2015
Jay Chirinos
Category: Review
Miguel-Wildheart-Tour-Poster-Edit

The already-tiresome media narrative of a possible rivalry (“beef,” if you will) between fellow Los Angeles stars Frank Ocean and Miguel is at least a reminder that Channel Orange wasn’t the only R&B album of 2012 to put a serious spin on the genre. Kaleidoscope Dream was Miguel’s breakout album, a supremely confident and lean piece of work that highlighted its creator’s idiosyncrasies as much as his obvious star quality. It had one of the great seduction pop songs in the shape of “Adorn,” and it set a pretty high bar for the young artist, which he attempts to clear on Wildheart.
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Show Review: Lianne La Havas @ The Troubadour

The unstoppable UK singer is out for blood!

Gerry Doot
Category: Review
lianne la havas

Anyone who has heard Lianne La Havas’ debut album, Is Your Love Big Enough?, will tell you just how great the young Brit is on record, and as I learned during her March 2013 stop by LA’s El Rey Theatre (one of the first shows I covered for LA Music Blog), she’s equally skilled in front of an audience. Her unique voice as a singer and musician combined with a sound that pays tribute to classic soul and R&B caught me by surprise, and I’ve been following her career ever since.
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Show Review: Mitski @ The Echo

Keeping things simple, sweet, and sad

July 7th, 2015
Winnie Fan
Category: Review
mitski_head

I’m in a weird place in my life where I can still feel all the heartache that’s afflicted me in the past even if I’m not right in the middle of it. It’s the kind of thing that rips me away from reality and takes me back to the most vulnerable times in my life. Those are the places that Mitski describes perfectly on her phenomenal album Bury Me at Makeout Creek, and those are the places I revisited yet again during her show at The Echo Thursday night.
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Recap: Vans Warped Tour 2015 @ Pomona Fairplex

Solid festival but a dip from previous years

Mary Bonney
Category: Review
warped tour 2015

What’s going on, Kevin Lyman? Did the planning of this year’s Warped Tour get sidetracked in the organization of the Taste of Chaos Festival? Or perhaps you had to focus on the lineup for your other festival, It’s Not Dead? Either way, I think the Vans Warped Tour drew the short stick this year. While the summer festival (and my fifth anniversary with this blog) had many of the same elements as years past, like talented rising rock bands and thousands of passionately screaming fan, 2015 didn’t quite measure up to previous iterations of the fest.
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