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Ray & Remora releases debut full-length on 9/16

Ray & Remora were born two decades apart. As any Gen X born, or millenial who feels two old to identify with the term (raises hand!), can attest, Dan Crane (Ray) sees the early nineties as an essential part of his musical upbringing. Amanda Walker (Remora), on the other hand, is a good two decades younger than him. Nevertheless, they both brought their minds together to write a full album featuring a who's who of nineties indie rock royalty. 

After accomplishing this with very good success, the duo are now close to releasing their first full-length of recorded material, Startle It Up. And yes, those nineties influences do carry into their originals as well. One of their most recent singles, "The Happening", is a more gleaming fuzz rocker that offsets their more melodic inclinations with a sleeker pop accesibility.

Ray & Remora is releasing Startle It Up on September16. - Juan Rodríguez


FYF Fest 2016 preview: local festival features some of LA’s top talent

A lot has changed since FYF started back in 2004. It’s safe to say that FYF now directly competes with some the country’s most popular festivals, and yet its carefully-picked lineups are second to none in terms of quality and fan appreciation. I can’t think of another festival that dares to put Grace Jones as one of the top headliners, and also manages to get Saves the Day to jam out to Stay What You Are so we can relive our teen years.

It also never fails to feature some of LA’s most sought-after artists. So even if there’s a shortage of lesser-known independent artists this time around (a need that’s more than satiated with festivals like Echo Park Rising and Eagle Rock Music Festival), the festival will still feature a good number of stellar artists who we’ve seen flourish from local favorites to notable international acts.

Below are some of our top local undercard picks for FYF 2016:

1. Chelsea Wolfe: Performing at an appropriately-timed 11pm slot on Saturday night, the darkly seductive singer-songwriter will provide her doom-laden folk anthems to anyone who likes that perfect symmetry of pitch-black ambiance and intense, feral passion. Having seen her evolution throughout the years has been a delight, especially last year’s Abyss, a breakthrough effort that is testament to her tireless work ethic and unrelenting talent.

2. Julia Holter: Julia Holter is a fiercely independent artist who continues to surprise with every new project. Last year’s Have you in a Wilderness was vastly celebrated, both in the States and abroad, another eye-opening creation that showcases her compositional prowess and nuanced intimacy.

3. Boogie: The Compton-based rapper has released two mixtapes, one of which included last year’s sleeper hit “Oh My”, and yet he still remains an enigmatic character. Having recently signed to Interscope Records, it’s safe to say that Anthony Dixsom’s last days as an under appreciated artist are numbered. Expect a rousing set at the newly-minted Club tent, which will serve as an appropriate training ground to test some of his new material.

4. Kelela: This is the second FYF appearance from the experimental singer-songwriter, who’s soulfully-tinged R&B remains unfairly overlooked behind artists like FKA Twigs and Banks. The fact that she’ll be performing in between artists like Ty Segall and Wolf Parade on Saturday night demonstrates her crossover appeal, coming from an artist who's really come into her own performing her alluringly provocative songs on stage.

5. Ty Segall & the Muggers: We’ve seen Ty before, (many, many times, actually), but this year he’s bringing The Muggers along to perform this year’s wildly idiosyncratic release, Emotional Mugger. At FYF, some things will never change.


Roses announce debut full-length, share new single "Accessory"

Roses are no stranges to this blog. From their luscious Dreamlover EP to last year's single "Quiet Time", the synth rock trio has been steadily growing into a bone fide new wave act with their slick, jangly love songs. "Accessory", their latest single off of their upcoming debut full-length Camera Trouble, is another jittery pop cut with a new romantic flair that continues their love affair with bands like The Cure and The Wake.

Camera Trouble is out on October 28 via Group Tightener. The band will be playing new songs at the Hi Hat alongside French Vanilla on September 9. - Juan Rodríguez


Alt-folk duo NewBalance releases debut album, performs at The Smell

“...Quiet songs with minimal arrangements.”

Jeremy Leasure describes the aim of his tandem debut with Brittany Beppu, Thoughts on Future Hindsight, concisely. As NewBalance, the duo draws something different from Leasure’s older project, Canyons, of which Beppu occasionally contributes to. They're more influenced by songwriters like Scott Walker and Townes Van Zandt, Judy Garland and Audrey Hepburn. Poignant and noble.

Beppu's voice stands out in the album’s tape scratch “Shirley Temple”. At first the lyrics are cryptic, but the songs emerge as individual character sketches, says Leasure—an attempt "...to understand how we cope when things don't go the way we imagined they would." He hopes that the songs provide the same comfort to his audience as they did for him. NewBalance’s next performance on the 19th at The Smell with Tone in Georgia, Hannah and minimall. Listen to the opener "Cartoon Captions" off Thoughts on Future Hindsight, out now. - Kaitlyn Tang

Live Review: Miya Folick at Non Plus Ultra 8/13

We clapped for a man who had eaten four hamburgers, someone from deep in the crowd. Loko Ono’s drummer Jason Adam picked him out.

That was after vōx’s (pronounced “wokes”) opening set, which the audience gave a wide berth for. She ended on the floor after escaping from a sheer curtain, shadows of lancet arches blocking out flowers as she became a voice and nothing more.

And in the end, Jason and Kathleen Adams ended on the floor too, turned into some jumbling mess of limbs after recalling tales of a primitive world. A rhetorical question fell on self-conscious ears—most people were not willing to dance. But that didn’t undermine Loko Ono’s performance; it was quite clear they did not give a fuck either way.

By the time Miya Folick carved out her stage, fans were lining the ramparts of Non Plus Ultra. Formalities first: Folick revealed the music video for “Pet Body”, which also debuted at 2015’s CMJ Music Marathon. She watched on from the sidelines with her crew and Nick Ventura (Froth, HOTT MT), subbing in with his faded fiesta red Jaguar.

Minutes later, Folick was staring at the sea of strange darlings, head submerged in tessellations of light. We nearly suffocated on neighbors’ small talk until she cranked the fuzz way up and blew the room out. Made it sound large and vast like the ocean. She had no trouble adjusting; it was clear as the first time we saw her that the singer was in her element no matter the crowd. All she needed was a crowd.

You get a second chance next week at Girlschool Collective’s collab with San Pedro’s Third Thursdays Live, minus Loko Ono/plus Gavin Turek, Dot and DJ Suzie Strong. - Ryan Mo, photo by Rachel Collins


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