Monday, January 31, 2011

Discovering Phaeleh

Perhaps I am late to the party, but I just discovered Phaeleh - some beautifully orchestrated large body downtempo music.

The video for the song for "Afterglow" featuring Soundmouse doesn't do the song justice, but here it is nonetheless.

What I am really digging on is "Fallen Light" which is on some dark, electro composer tip. A cross between RJD2 and something I can't put my finger on - maybe Quantic, but with dubstep tempos. If you can handle music without lyrics to song along to, something tells me you'll find something to like about Phaeleh.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Postelles Rock The Left Coast at The Roxy

Thanks to an invitation from Plus One Records, I had the privilege of rocking out with Manhattan natives The Postelles at the esteemed venue The Roxy last night, where they played support to Free Energy.

Performing tracks from their "White Night" EP, Elvis covers ("Hound Dog") and their forthcoming self titled debut full length album - The Postelles infected Sunset Blvd. with their bred since high school chemistry (they've played together for many years) and indie rock sheik. With catchy songs like "Can't Stand Still" that had me drawing comparisons to Arctic Monkeys, I'm wishing the album was officially out so I could tell friends to buy that 'ish. Here is a video of them performing that song at SXSW 2010 just in case you're unfamiliar.

Their live show was pretty entertaining - especially closing things out with the Elvis cover and the aforementioned CSS. Certainly one worthy of catching at least once and one that I am already eager to see again (preferably for more time).

The Postelles are as advertised - a cohesive unit of talented musicians that have developed a 50's, 60's and 70's rock influenced NYC indie-pop rock sound. Vocalist Daniel Balk has a charming voice and creative hand and microphone gestures - although I do wish he danced more. Lead guitarist David Dargahi looks as comfortable as anyone - both strumming and doing vocals. John Speyer and Bill Cadden hold down the rhythm on bass and percussion respectively.

Daniel Balk (lead vocals, rhythm guitar)

David Dargahi (lead guitar, vocals)

Their self titled album, produced by Albert Hammond Jr., is set to drop sometime in April 2011 and includes Balk's sweet and tender vocals on signature songs like "123 Stop" (which was in the trailer for "How Do You Know"), "White Night" (which you can get for free through their website and "Stella," as well as other magic recorded in Manhattan's Quad Studios. With a live performance that stole headliner Free Energy's thunder, past festival plays at Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza and press hits already from Rolling Stone to Teen Vogue and blog love on sites like My Old Kentucky Blog, The Audio Perv and Daytrotter - you should check this band out if you haven't already.

The Postelles press photos by Harper Smith, live photos by Brandon Dorsky

Thursday, January 27, 2011


The infamous crew that brings you the Do Over every Sunday in L.A. during the Summer have decided to storm the desert to throw a weekend party in the dead of winter. Consider this your official extended Weekend Alert as Saturday and Sunday February 19th and 20th respectively, The Sleep-Over presented by Red Bull and adidas Originals is going down.

The Do-Over crew will take to the 10 fwy and arrive at the Ace Hotel and Swim Club in Palm Springs for a very special Presidents 3 Day Weekend get down.

In typical Do-Over fashion, all events are free and the DJ’s are a mystery.

Act fast as the Ace Hotel is filling up. We’ve provided additional lodging options below as we want all the Do-Over extended family to come through regardless of where they may end up leaving their luggage.



Saturday February 19th
All day: Check in, relax and enjoy pool, drinks and Palm Springs.
10pm – 2am: The Do-Over presents at The Amigo Room with special guest dj’s

Sunday February 20th
12pm – 10pm: The Do-Over presents at the main pool with special guest dj’s
10pm – 2am: The Do-Over presents at The Amigo Room with special guest dj’s

Monday February 21st
Check out.

*Exact times and locations subject to change, but all will take place on the grounds of The Ace Hotel.

The Ace Hotel and Swim Club

701 East Palm Canyon Drive
Palm Springs, CA 92264
(760) 325-9900
Use Corp Discount Code “SLEEPOVER” for 15% off best available rate (placed online or over phone)

What’cha Wanna Do? Do-Over!

Additional Lodging options within walking distance:
Desert Riviera Hotel
(from $149/nt)
610 East Palm Canyon Drive
Palm Springs, CA, 92264
(760) 325-6129

Motel 6
(from $43.99/nt)
595 East Palm Canyon Drive
Palm Springs, CA, 92264
(760) 325-6129

What's Not To Like About White Lies....the band that is.

Generally I’m not very big on going to show before the headliners are due to go on, especially if I’ve never even heard of the opening band before. In this case, I’m glad I showed up early. The crowd at The Troubadour on Monday night was an eclectic group of misfits - I couldn’t place it. The age ranged from fake ID status, to seasoned Bukowski wannabes saddled up to the bar. Being West Hollywood on “a school night”, the masses were less hipster, more classic audiophile.

Giant Drag took stage at exactly 8:30pm with Annie Hardy on lead guitar and vocals, Micah Calabrese on synthesizer and drums, and someone named Dakota covering bass. Gotta say, one of my favorite parts of the evening was trying to figure out whether Dakota was a man or woman. With feminine (yet make-up less) features, and heavy bangs I thought “girl for sure!”... it was the giant man-hands and lack of breasts that threw me off - and with a name like Dakota it could go either way.

That being said, I’m pretty sure Hardy was really high. With her drawn out, high-pitched stoner voice you couldn’t help but liken her to Lamb Chop, the sock puppet. However, you can imagine my delight when in the midst of her chaotic ramblings (“Don’t worry. I’m not crying. I’m not Cat Power. I’m not gonna’ freak out!”) she referred to the mysterious Dakota as a him! Finally, the truth was out!

With the “man vs. woman” debate finally cleared up I could actually relax and listen to the music, and therefore officially say that Giant Drag is a pretty great band. Their sound is a mix between Hole and Cat Power... or some sort of My Bloody Valentine hybrid. They opened with “You Fuck Like My Dad”, and then went on to “High Friends in Places”, but one of my favorites for the night was their classic cover of Chris Isaac’s “Wicked Game”. Regardless, they’re worthy of being checked out - whether live or via the interwebs. However seeing them live would make you prive to Annie Hardy’s muffled rantings, and perhaps to Dakota, the breast-less bass playing wonder.

An hour later White Lies took the stage, and the once half-filled Troubadour was now completely packed. Two chords in and I had fallen in love with lead vocalist Harry McVeigh. With his boyish looks (he’s only 22), his baritone voice, and British accent, what wasn’t to love? Though I must say the other four members of the band (Charles Cave, Jack Lawrence-Brown, Tommy Bowen, and Rob Lee) were also most excellent. I’ve heard their album before, but White Lies is one of those bands that just sound so much better live - a welcome change to the over synthesized records that can be put out these days. Their sound is a bit Depeche Mode, a bit Joy Division... If anything, I’d call them an off-shoot to New Order - a more modern and electric version of a classic throwback.

The band was super professional - no sound problems, no banter with the crowd, just straight-forward and clean cut. Sure, I would have loved if Harry McVeigh had spotted me through the sea of people and asked if I wanted to come back to his London flat, but he didn’t. Even as heartbroken as I am, their new (and second) album Ritual just dropped a little over a week ago and I can most certainly recommend checking it out. Better yet, check their tour dates and go ogle my boyfriend in person.

Lying in general is never good, but White Lies? Always amazing.

post by Lauren Lomma

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

K. Flay at Troubadour Tonight w/ wallpaper, The Dance Party & More

Stanford graduate and hipster hip-hopstress K. Flay makes her way into Los Angeles this evening, where she performs with wallpaper., The Dance Party (Hell Ya!) and Dude Royal.

Born in IlliNOISE - K. Flay began making music in her dorm room shortly after heading West. Now, with a lot of industry heat around the quite talented female artists, she's making music everywhere - from studios to apartments to the front seat of her car (wonder if she was making music with Amp on her car on the day of this photograph?).

You can peep some of her tracks through or click this link - K.Flay - 2 Weak

K. Flay takes stage at 9:30 and may just steal the thunder of fellow rappers Dude Royal and wallpaper. Flay will be at home with Bay Area electro-hip-hop funkster wallpaper - whose live show is definitely worthy of anyone's attention. Wallpaper's received some good nods for recent live remix work of Passion Pit and Das Racist - and who knows what he will pull out tonight.

Dude Royal is an L.A. native also worth your time. If you heard the radio friendly "Love High" last year - you might already be on top of this show and be aware that he is not merely a rapper, but also a singer. If you didn't - check it out and check out the show tonight if you can!

Also on the line-up are The Dance Party, whose debut record was released on Hell Ya in late 2010. Despite not fitting all that well with this line up (why have The Dance Party with rising hip-hop artists?), The Dance Party will certainly be giving lessons in their expertise areas - Dancing and Partying.

If you want to have a good time, get your dance on and Party - go to Troubadour tonight!

Monday, January 24, 2011

FREE INDIE MONDAY w/ Risers, Kinch, Jenny O, Lucy Schwartz, Belle Brigade & The Fling

Josh from Risers

Tonight the eastside really is being taken over by phenomenal indie rock. Such good tunes that it would be foolish not to go. Packing in both Silverlake Lounge and The Satellite are handfuls of talent that make most indie-rock loving non Los-Angelenos regret their lack of residency here.

The shows I'm talking about are Risers & Kinch at Silverlake Lounge and Jenny O, Lucy Schwartz, The Fling and Belle Brigade at The Satellite (formerly Spaceland). Both events are FREE!

Risers get things moving at 9 pm at Silverlake Lounge where they will be premiering material from their first EP. I'm looking forward to indulging in a live version of "A Current Affair," which is probably my favorite track off of their EP. My plan is to stay for Kinch to catch at least one night of their residency, but with Jenny O pulling for my attention and rising start Lucy Schwartz too - it may be tough.

Schwartz and O play supporting roles on The Fling and Belle Brigade's Monday Night residency - the second to last residency show being hosted by Spaceland Presents. Schwartz is a singer-songwriter who has penned tracks for Shrek films, Grey's Anatomy and many other popular films/shows. Jenny O represents the crushing vocals behind every Yeah Yeah Yeah's track you've jammed to over the last half decade.

Returning for the second to last week are both Belle Brigade and The Fling. Both have generated considerable buzz from the residency - with The Fling using theirs to compete with Dangerbird labelmates Eulogies and Belle Brigade using theirs to maintain their indie cultural cache.

Regardless of which venue you head to, you're certain to have a not of good indie at either. If you can be a trooper and hit up both, than you're more than likely to find me somewhere....

Saturday, January 22, 2011

That Good - Snoop & Wiz Khalifa

Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa are apparently the new Cheech & Chong. I love them both and their affinity for the sweet, sweet cheeba.

But, does anyone else think this video could be probable cause for authorities to search either of their tour buses the next time they tour anywhere?

Now, Now from Minneapolis Performs Tonight at Sold Out Troubadour

A month after closing out 2010 with a performance at their hometown's Popsickle Festival and 6 weeks after releasing their new EP, Neighbors, Now, Now (formerly Now, Now Every Children) are gracing The Troubadour.

The group caught a bit of a fire at New Jersey's Bamboozle Festival and later dropped the Every Children from their name to be in tune with their musical maturation. From what other critics say (I didn't rock out to Cars, their debut EP very much) - they've improved their structure and are playing with more confidence.

Filter Magazine said "[l]eading ladies Cacie Dalager and Jess Abbott's vocals blend perfectly with the indie-rock, guitar-laced, and anthemic tunes that seem to blast out your speakers on Neighbors," while Spin compared the band to Metric and Be Your Own Pet.

Big Hassle's hosting two of their tracks for streaming - "Giants" and "Neighbors". Tickets for The Troubadour are sold out. They are opening for Hellogoodbye.


Some of my homeboys from Boulder, Colorado - Ben Samples and Greg Fisk - perhaps better known as performing artists Fresh2Death are coming to Long Beach, CA to Club Bleu on Tuesday January 25th. They also recently busted out a free mixtape for Grassroots California.

Here is a link to that mixtape!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

BASS/OFF - Melt Your Face With Bass on 1.19.11

How much Bass can you handle in your face? You better hope a lot - because Mr. Danny Johnson and Mr. Brad Hoss have combined faces and forces to bring you one epically bass heavy event at Key Club tonight.

A who's who of local dubstep culture will definitely be in the house with SMOG and Media Contender camps representing strong, and the Gotta Dance Dirty crew in the mix as well. All will be celebrating the annual aging process of both Johnson and Hoss - and rejoicing in the Coachella announcements of a handful of dubstep artists.

Kastle is the scheduled headliner. The beatsmith from Pittsburgh knows how to work a crowd - big or small (he just played Check Yo Ponytail w/ Tobacco and Royal Bangs) and he will have some stellar support from Flinch, Camo UFOs and Mr. White. When the special guest(s) step up to the stage - the party is just going to reach out of this world levels of awesome if the guests are who I think they are.

If you want to do the wobble step, get your face melted off by bass or just want to have a good hump day - I highly recommend you go to Key Club.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Monday, January 17, 2011

Budos Band @ El Rey Theatre - January 14th, 2011

Budos Band brought all sorts of proper funk on Friday night at El Rey Theatre in Los Angeles. Here are some of my choice shots of the Brooklyn brass heads getting down.

Tic Tic Boom EP Release Show for Reasons & Rhymes

Local indie synth band Tic Tic Boom! take to The Viper Room's stage to wow a Sunset Strip crowd with their newly discovered penchant for a more Passion Pit-esque feel. Leaving behind some of their former punk gusto and embracing a slower tempo that is more synthesizer friendly, Leilani Francisco and Mike DeLay are now making music that grabs the attention of not just L.A.'s Sunset Strip crowd, but also its eastside faction. With catchy, quirky hooks belted by Leilani and Mike's heavily layered production - Tic Tic Boom are hoping their DIY efforts turn some heads in 2011.

We are running a giveaway for tickets on our twitter and facebook pages - and you can also RSVP to the facebook event here -!/event.php?eid=186469588045511 The door price is $5 and everyone who comes for Tic Tic Boom! will get a copy of the EP with their attendance. You can check out a sneak peak download of their track "Just Friends" which is on the EP.

With another local synth based group, Odd Modern, providing support - the night should be filled with indie hipsters indulging in some electrified sounds. Odd Modern gives away all of their music for free at Check out this Odd Modern video featuring Steve O below:

Behind Banksy's "Exit Through The Gift Shop"

This is some behind the scenes footage from Exit Through The Gift Shop. I'm actually in this video because I was at the L.A. show #cameo

Saturday, January 15, 2011

To Haiti With Love Tonight

Support Haiti by going to the Bootleg Theater tonight to see Vanaprasta, John Carpenter, John Isaac Waters and Mariah McManus. The musicians are donating their services - and you should donate your $$$. On top of the intimate show - you'll get a complimentary download card of the To Haiti With Love Compilation for your time, money and it is well worth it.

Sideways Media ladies Nicole and Mary will be in the house, you can expect to see Mr. Kevin Bronson of Buzzbands L.A. and I also believe the lovely ladies of Planetary Group may be there too. It's going to be one of the better indie hipster hangouts of the night - complete with hipster publicists and bloggers - so if you're in a local L.A. band you might consider going just to mingle with some of our local music voicesm and support your fellow local talent, Vanaprasta.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Kudos for Budos!

As I'd mentioned in the Concert Blast, the funk is pretty wicked this weekend in Los Angeles. Tonight we get a dosage of that stuff from Budos Band at El Rey Theatre.

"Up From The South" is my favorite song of theirs, although it is an older one. Not only is it funky and good - but it was the theme song for the NFL network a few years back - and that only made me love it more.

Check it out....

Mondrian Sessions Start Tonight w/ Francis and The Lights

IAMSOUND Records presents the Mondrian Sessions tonight, and many other nights, in conjunction with a host of other cool sponsors (KCRW, Fader, Guitar Center...)

The event hosts special guest DJs all the time and better yet, good talent from 8 to midnight. The series begins with Francis & The Lights tonight before going on hiatus for a few weeks, so if you'd like a sneak peak at what the scene might be like for the rest of the Skybar Poolside Performance season at Mondrian.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Jam Cruise 9 - Jamming From America to Mexico and Back

I began my 2011 year of music as I've done the past four years - with a business trip to board Jam Cruise. Making its ninth voyage, Jam Cruise is like Bonnaroo on a boat or late night Jazzfest on a boat, or more likely something in between those two and being backstage. Its like a long extended recess for adults that love music. Its like dying and going to heaven if you love funk music.

Departing out of Ft. Lauderdale on Tuesday January 4th - it seemed I'd sail through the first week of the year in a funky festive atmosphere on Jam Cruise 9. Big Sam's Funky Nation were scheduled to open up the Cruise Kick Off Party on the Pool Deck at 6 pm as the sun set.

However, the trip didn't start off all fun in the festival sun. Waiting for the 2,000+ paying customers preparing to board the MSC Poesia at Port Everglades were Broward County Police, Drug Enforcement Agents and Border Patrol officials, along with a handful of drug and bomb sniffing dogs. While I thought it was a beefed up response to the six arrests they made of people disembarking last year - it turns out a passenger's ex-girlfriend ratted him out and the authorities were out in full force on the disgruntled mates tip-off.

The upset girlfriend didn't just get her ex boo thrown in the slammer - in total 15 would-be Jam Cruise passengers were arrested at the port for possession of mostly "small quantities" of various types of substances. Thankfully, I did not know any of them. Canines did not board the boat (unlike what had been reported) - but canines did confront passengers as they brought their bags through the customs facilities and suspicious people were vigorously searched.

After the customs riff-raff and the arrival of baggage, passengers again got comfortable and Cloud 9 Adventures staff and MSC crew prepared us for life on our supremely oversized floating funk-raft.

Big Sam's Funky Nation inaugurated these years festivities with some masterful trombone and a personality that felt as large as the boat.

Robert Randolph & The Family Band followed up the Funky nation in the Teatro Carlo Felice - for the first indoor show of Jamcruise 9. Rocking amazing Randolph tunes and a submarine funk level version of "Thriller" - The Family Band made sure Jam Cruise rookies got an early taste of the boat's magic.

Although I was not torn about missing Scaring The Children (Bob Weir, Rob Wasserman & Jay Lane) - when I had to pick between Pimps of Joytime and Anders Osborne with Stanton Moore and Carl Dufrene, it was a battle. A brief stint at Pimps ended when I heard the easily distinguishable Stanton Moore stand-up snare hit. Osborne, the gritty bearded Southern-rock impresario, and Galactic's Moore channeled the nights energy into very flavorful southern funk rock anthems with support from Dufrene and friends, including George Porter Jr.

Karl Denson's Tiny Universe closed out the night on the Pool Deck - playing tunes from "Brother's Keeper" and earlier albums. Before hitting the cabin for the night, I did give a peep at Stockholm Syndrome and Dave School's heavy bass.

Day 2 started with the faint tunes of Cornmeal's bluegrass creeping through my balcony window. Unfortunately, I didn't make it up to the deck until Perpetual Groove's Brock Butler took stage - displaying his signature singer freestyler jam songwriter swagger. Standing tall above the crowd in the pool - Butler delivered 45 minutes of solid tunes until Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars paraded through and carried his crowd away with them.

Sierra brought a pretty tribal element of music that has not often been heard on board the Jam Cruise voyages. It was a pleasant shift on a gorgeous bright day. Ivan Neville's Dumpstaphunk followed the All Stars - reminding everyone that the boat may be a place to discover new musicians and new types of music, but it has been and always will be captained by funk.

Guitar heroes and fans got a special treat in the early evening as Zach Deputy played during sunset bleeding right into the supergroup, Some Cat From Japan on the pool deck. Opting out of seeing more shredding, I chose to go to the Atrium to see Marco Benevento lay down some improvisations on a grand piano. The keys specialist did not disappoint. Benevento's fluidity made me forget I was taking an interlude for food before Galactic, The New Mastersounds and Lettuce.

Of the three - Lettuce definitely brought things the hardest. The botched version of "Move On Up"

Lettuce had me so funked up, I needed to go to sleep and get ready for our arrival in Honduras the following day.

Day 3 began on the island of Roatan, Honduras. I'm not sure what Roatan is known for - but I'd been once before, checked out the beaches and was happy to just meander through town to a very close beach and enjoy the sand. So did some other Jam Cruisers. I sat by the bay, looked at the sky and avoided thinking about the work that was undoubtedly piling up back home.

From a beautiful day in the sun, I watched the MSC Poesia sail away for what I thought would be the best night of music on the boat - Stockholm Syndrome, Lettuce, Big Gigantic, Garage A Trois, Lettuce, Lotus, Big Sam's Funky Nation. All capped by George Porter Jr. playing host in the Jam Room.

Day 4 our port was Costa Maya, Mexico. Opting for the adult recess activity - I played no holds barred kickball with a handful of other Jamcruisers. 3 strikes and you're out (w/ foul ball rules). 3 outs you switch sides. Anything else goes - tackling, moving bases around, stealing shoes, etc. Oh yeah, and no limit on the number of people in the outfield and NO limit on the number of drinks. You can imagine how much fun we were having. It was team Sleepers vs. Team Up All Night.

Against better judgment I tasted from the handle of tequila being passed around and before I knew it I was doing 40 on a golf cart on a Mexican highway. I guess that's why they only let us dock in Costa Maya for 7 hours...

Sailing away to the sounds of Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears put me in a delightful mood - which was only perpetuated by Karl Denson's Tiny Universe and The New Mastersounds. Unfortunately, all the day drinking activity and pool deck fun had me tuckering out early and after some Big Gigantic and a little bit of Jam Room - I was captain toast.

Jam Cruise 9's final day at sea brought a full day of music, kicking off with The Pimps of Joytime on the pool deck.

As the day went on , there as a lapse in the funk (during ALO and Nathan Moore), but then Anders Osborne took stage with George Porter Jr. and Johnny Vidacovich - and ultimately being joined by Leo Nocentelli. The powerhouse of jazz greats continued as their southern rock funk session bled into overtime before Maceo's Super Jam.

From the Maceo Parker led Super Jam, I went to the casino and then on to see my favorite super band, Garage A Trois go jungle punk funk at the Zebra Bar. GAT left no stone unturned - bringing out massive music from their three albums and a handful of covers too.

As Garage A Trois finished - I darted to catch the final hour of Robert Randolph & The Family Band on the pool deck. I'm so glad I did because I stumbled on Cornmeal doing a cover of Talking Heads' "Naive Melody" on the way.

When I finally did get to Randolph, not only did Randolph do his best rendition of Hendrix, but he also remarked about how the boat was the best trip he had ever taken in his life. Each year a musician says that, and it warmed my heart to hear those words come from Mr. Randolph's mouth. Even cooler that I was hearing the music while tossing one back with Eric from Lettuce!

Disembarkation luckily did not have as many procedural issues as boarding, nor was there as massive of a customs presence. The less intense re-introduction to society was necessary after 5 days of backstage festival mayhem. The looks on all the departing passengers faces showed a mixture of emotion - but all had one constant - a look like they couldn't wait to do it again next year.

Jam Cruise 10 pre-booking is available through

Monday, January 3, 2011

JJ Kills Mixtape

The hard to stick into a definitive genre Swedish group jj dropped a holiday gift on the inter-world last week with the release of their KILLS mixtape.

While the name is not one that has shaken American Billboard charts, jj holds its weight on the internet. Their sonic landscape, which includes ambient tones, hip-hop influences and an awareness of what makes pop music pop, draws listeners from a variety of crowds and genres. Stoners may be familiar with the group from their debut album's cover art - a stamped cannabis leaf. Europeans may be familiar with jj because they are more popular there. Web crawlers probably heard about No. 2 sometime since its 2009 release. But, if you're not familiar with jj yet - peep the mixtape.

The mixtape music is easy to listen to in the background while you're working - but isn't club ready or for cruising LA highways (in my opinion). A bit too slow/ambient for that - with "Kill Them" perhaps being the exception.