April 17, 2012
It’s the afternoon before her San Francisco band’s namesake holiday, April Fool’s Day, and Rupa Marya is taking a lunch break from preparations for Rupa and the April Fishes’ upcoming bicycle concert tour. Marya woke up early this morning to alter her bike to haul not just her but her music gear 200 miles over nine days this month.
“That meant taking the wheel off and adding this extension,” said the leader of the multicultural amalgam April Fishes as she pointed to a newly installed metal frame extension to her baby blue bicycle. “I also had to extend the back bike gear cable.” Marya knew nothing about altering bicycles; she picked it up at the nonprofit Bike Kitchen in the Mission, where instructors teach others how to repair their own bicycles. “Someone sat there with me and taught me how to do cabling – it was totally amazing to learn,” she said.
The desire to learn has pulled Marya for most of her life, not just musically, but in her other career as a doctor. It’s also the reason she wanted to trek around the Bay on a bike – to explore the connection people have with the history, wildlife and culture here.
Marya was born in the U.S. to Indian parents. When she was 4, she and her brother were temporarily sent to India to live with their grandparents while their parents struggled financially in the Bay Area. When she was 10, her parents moved the family to France. She now speaks four languages: English, French, Hindi and Spanish.
After moving back to the Bay Area, Marya studied medicine. In her spare time she performed solo with her guitar at coffee houses, art galleries and on the streets of the Mission. After one of these shows, in 2006, cellist Ed Baskerville convinced her to rehearse with him and later to start the April Fishes. The lineup now includes drummer Aaron Kierbel, cellist Misha Khalikulov, trumpet player Mario Alberto Silva and bassist Safa Shokrai.
March 30, 2012
Foxtails Brigade have released a new video shot by Jack Conte of YouTube darlings Pomplamoose. It’s apparently the first of four videos that they plan to do together. The other three will be released on Foxtails Brigades’ YouTube channel.
The video is shot very much in the Pomplamoose style, where what you hear is what you see — the person and instrument making every single sound at some point makes a cameo in the video. In other words, they’re keepin it real, and they can prove it. Conte explained the method to NPR a couple years ago, and it’s worth checking out if only for the Beyonce and Lady Gaga covers.
This approach works pretty well for Foxtails Brigade, because it means you get a glimpse of the drum kit. I caught a set at SXSW and from what I saw, the kit consisted of a metal bowl, a wine bottle, two toms, some cow bells, and a tambourine. I thought that was cool.
Foxtails Brigade are headlining a show with Emily Jane White on Apr 11 at Cafe Du Nord. (If you haven’t checked out the teaser tracks from EJW’s forthcoming Ode to Sentience, out June 12 on Antenna Farm Records, you should. Do it!) After Du Nord, the two are hitting the road together for a short tour. Hit the jump for the tour dates.
February 17, 2012
Oakland cloud rap duo Main Attrakionz have announced dates for their first U.S tour, and to celebrate they have released a brand new track entitled “Focalin” produced by Tyler Bisson.
Main Attrakionz consists of rapper/producer Squadda Bambino and rapper Mondre Man. In the past year, they have gained a significant amount of national recognition, fueled by the release of their 2011 mixtape 808s & Dark Grapes II. The duo will cap off their first national tour this spring with a week of shows at SXSW. You can view the group’s upcoming tour dates below.
February 16, 2012
Psych-garage punks Thee Oh Sees have announced their US winter tour dates, which include stops at Austin’s SXSW and a recent trip on the Bruise Cruise, with Barcelona’s Primavera Sound coming at the end of May.
The group won’t be wanting for new material to play. In 2011 alone, they dropped two albums: Castlemania in the summer and Carrion Crawler/The Dream in the fall. LA/SF band White Fence, which just released a record via Woodsist, supports three of those dates.
2/10 – Bruise Cruise Festival – Miami, FL
3/06 – Independent – San Francisco, CA *
3/07 – Angel City – Los Angeles, CA ^#
3/08 – Pappy and Harriet’s – Pioneertown, CA **^
3/09 – Beauty Bar – Las Vegas, NV **^
3/10 – Launch Pad – Albuquerque, NM **
3/11 – Denton 35 Festival – Denton, TX
3/12 – 3/17 – SXSW – Austin, TX
* with Magnetix + Pets with Pets
^ with The Mallard
# with Crazy Band
** with White Fence
February 1, 2012
Cloud Nothings‘ decidedly distinct follow-up to last year’s eponymous debut, Attack on Memory, dropped earlier this week via Carpark, and has already received glowing reviews from Pitchfork and the like.
In support of the new Albini-produced record, the band has announced a lengthy list of country-wide tour dates, which includes a sojourn at Bottom of the Hill on Saturday, March 3rd. Tickets are available for $12 from the venue’s website, and San Francisco’s Your Cannons and Brooklyn’s Mr. Dream open. Full tour dates are after the jump.
January 20, 2012
Two days ago, Death Cab for Cutie announced a unique addition to their upcoming tour: members of San Francisco’s own Magik*Magik Orchestra will accompany the band on stage as they tour various North American cities.
As Minna Choi discussed with us back in June, the Magik*Magik Orchestra has a celebrated ability to pair effervescently with rock bands, bringing bands’ performances to entirely new levels. And that’s not an exaggeration: the pairing of the Magik*Magik Orchestra with John Vanderslice at the Herbst Theatre last summer was absolutely awe-inspiring.
The official Death Cab for Cutie/Magik*Magik Orchestra 2012 tour kicks off in April and ends in May, with a stop in the Bay Area on May 18th at the Fox Theater. All tour dates after the jump. [More...]
December 20, 2011
Ty Segall’s bandmate Mikal Cronin has taken a solo tangent as of late, and will release a 7-inch this month with “Goner” and the b-side “You’ve Gotta Have Someone.”
Mikal Cronin just wrapped a West Coast tour, and his next announced dates are in CA in March — he’s on a solid Great American show March 2 with Ty Segall, White Fence and The Feeling of Love. More dates after the jump. [More...]
September 16, 2011
Editor’s note: The above video features our very own Todd Wanerman interviewing the Family Crest during the band’s recent intimate show in Todd’s living room. Watch the video to find out more about the band’s history, their focus on community, and how they turned classically-trained musicians into a rock band.
The local multi-piece band The Family Crest has undertaken to play a live date of some sort every night this month of September. I was fortunate to host one such performance last Sunday, and do the interview included here.
No one planned this as an anniversary of 9/11. But it seemed nonetheless to be some sort of poetic symmetry, being visited on this date by a band that claims some 250 members (anyone who has every played or sang with them), and who are passionately committed both to their music and to promoting the ties between musicians and between people. (I admit to being biased – they got my son Arlo involved).
With half a month to go, you should be able to catch up with this remarkable group – their debut CD, The Village, is great. But this is a band to appreciate live.