I love coming home to find a 12″/12″/1″ package on my doorstep. This time it was especially cool since it was the new Birdy Bardot LP! This local San Diego band is definitely good enough to break out of the local market. You can read a full review of this groovy/soulful/retro/pop record here at ListenSanDiego. You can buy the record and check out some other great San Diego bands over on The Redwoods San Diego page. Once you’ve listened let me know what you think in the comments.
Dirty Pennies, a rock band from San Diego, California play their new song, “Bad Machine” at the Ray at Night street festival in North Park. This song, written only two weeks prior and performed only once before, was created as a reaction to what our whole political process has become and is perfect timing considering the controversies surrounding the incoming president. Continue reading
I was 21 years old when MTV started back in 1981 and it was pretty awesome back then. Before that all we got was Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert and Burt Sugarman’s Midnight Special. Those were great shows but only filled 2.5 hours per week on Friday and Saturday nights. We all know that MTV doesn’t really do music videos anymore and the format went relatively dormant for a long time. Then YouTube, Vimeo, Vevo and others came along and music videos have once again become an important part of presenting and marketing a song.
That’s a lot of words to say that this song and video by wimps, a 3-piece punk rock band out of Seattle, is pretty fucking rad! Check out the video and then go see wimps play the Soda Bar Wednesday night when they open for Katie Von Schleicher...
The next band up, after Retra, was Mittens. I had heard quite a bit about Mittens and now I know what all the fuss was about. Mittens’ blend of ’60s girl group sounds, ’90s alt-rock (think Cardigans not Smashing Pumpkins – though I have no doubt that Paul Mitten could unleash some great Billy Corgan riffs!), and modern indie pop really was just as good as I was warned it would be. Continue reading
On a recent Friday night I was in the mood for new music and this show at The Kava Lounge looked interesting. I had heard of Mittens and The Fresh Brunettes but didn’t really know anything about them and I had no idea who Retra was. But I love checking out new bands so I headed on down to Kettner.
First up was Retra, who I soon found out is a relatively new band featuring Haven Blue on vocals, James Howard (Imagery Machine) on guitar , Chris Gorrie (Boychick, Giant Surprise) on bass, Carmen Martinez (Boychick) on drums, and Martin Sohikish (who didn’t play this night) on keys and guitar. Continue reading
The last stop on my Art Around Adams tour was to see Mittens back at the library stage. I had seen the band play about a month ago at The Kava Lounge so I already knew how much fun they were. Mittens play a style of indie-pop that looks back but still has a modern feel to it. Their band bio mentions being inspired by groups like Rilo Kiley, The Cranberries and The Cardigans – and I can certainly hear the influence of those bands in their sound – but there’s also no mistaking their love of early ’60s girl groups like The Ronettes, The Shirelles and Martha & the Vandellas. Throw in some surf-rock licks and well-timed blistering guitar solos, to go along with their 3-part harmonies and big hooks, and you have Mittens! Continue reading
My father was 26 years old when the Beatles‘ Please Please Me came out. I used to tell him that he was still young enough then to have followed the Beatles and the Stones instead of staying on the path that lead to Andy Williams and Glen Campbell. But the die was cast by that point, and rock ‘n’ roll was not going to be my dad’s thing. However, it turns out there was a section of his record collection that I would eventually come to fully appreciate. For as the British Invasion was in full swing, my dad was listening to The Lonely Bull, South of the Border and Whipped Cream & Other Delights by Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass. It turned out my dad was much cooler back then than I ever gave him credit for! Continue reading
I made it through the first 55 years of my life without ever seeing The Schizophonics and now I’ve seen them four times this year already. I was doing it wrong! The first time I saw The Schizophonics I had no idea what to expect. It was a crowded night at The Casbah and I was near the back craning my neck looking for the second guitarist. I turned around to say something to my friend and he was doing the same damn thing! Continue reading
Next up on this perfect day for local music was Cardinal Moon. The last time I saw this band was at their debut performance at the Redwoods Revue at the Music Box in early May. The creative duo behind this new San Diego band is singer/guitarist/songwriter Dawn Mitschele and Al “another band? sure, why not” Howard. Continue reading
If anyone needed a reminder of how fun rock ‘n’ roll can still be, they should have been to this show at The Casbah in San Diego. The Casbah was celebrating its 25th anniversary and was hosting bands from throughout its storied history, along with the kind of acts that should keep the venue vital for another quarter of a century.
First up on an all San Diego bill were newcomers, The Phantoms. This group features Victor Penalosa, the current drummer for the Flamin’ Groovies, on guitar and vocals, and a fantastic backing band of Xavier Anaya on lead guitar, Chris Iandolo on bass and Jarrod Lucas (from The Dragons) on drums. They opened with the lead song from their self-titled debut album, “Baby Loves Her Rock and Roll”, which sounded like a revved up long-lost song by The Beat (Paul Collins’ not English). The Phantoms then charged through their 10 song set as if they were the headliners with songs like “Stab My Broken Heart”, which besides kicking ass throughout, ended with the opening riff to “Love Gun” by KISS. The set then ended with a garage rockin’ version of Bob Seger’s “Rosalie” and then an homage to the bassist for glam-rock heroes Mott The Hoople with “The Ballad of Overend Watts”. These guys seem to be channeling the late 70’s/early 80’s power pop of The Plimsouls, 20/20 and the aforementioned Beat and are definitely a band keep an eye on.