Monday, October 25, 2010

Dusty Rhodes bring unique sound to the Continental Room

Dusty Rhodes and the River Band put on an entertaining performance at their show at the Continental Room Thursday. It was difficult to know exactly what I thought of Dusty Rhodes, because there seems to be a big division between the sound of the old songs and the new songs. Even the instruments are different, as the lead singer, Dustin Apodaca, switches from a fancy synthesizer which creates a more experimental indie sound for the new songs and an accordion that creates a folk sound for the older stuff. Since they play both, it's hard to place them in a category.

The environment while they were playing was very all encompassing, it would make anyone feel at home. They ended their set with an epic song that included a beautiful violin solo which made the whole event feel worthwhile.

Francisco The Man started out the evening slow and melodically, with a song that sounded very similar to the Smashing Pumpkins. At first it seemed they were going to be just that, a 90's influenced rock band, but after a couple more songs you could hear a mixture of influences from indie bands of the 2000's such as Beach House or Minus the Bear. In spite of my initial skepticism, I did enjoy the music and the crowd seemed impressed by the end of the set. 

Jeramiah Red could be described as DIY arena rock. For a local band, their sound is impeccable. They sound as if they are meant to be playing giant concerts and big festivals. They have an American rock n' roll bluegrass sort of feel to them, with what seems like an occasional metal influence.

The harmonica gives them a more folk sound at times, which creates a good dynamic because within their music, there is something to be liked by everyone. If you love classic rock and want to hear something pleasantly put together as opposed to those loosely thrown together, “whatever equipment I might have in the back of my garage” indie bands, I would strongly suggest going to see Jeramiah Red.

-Katie McCluer

Saturday, October 23, 2010

13 For Halloween

Because of the various dark, but fun themes of Halloween, many different types of genres and songs can be included in one singular mix. Here are a quick thirteen tracks for the holiday, some accompanied by creepy clips.

1. "Black Sabbath" - Black Sabbath (Black Sabbath 1970)

2. "Rainbow" - Boris with Michio Kurihara (Rainbow 2007)

3, "Bodysnatchers" - Radiohead (In Rainbows 2007)

4. "Candy" - Vitalic (Fanfares 2004)

5. "To Here Knows When" - My Bloody Valentine (Loveless 1991)

6. "Distortions" - Clinic (Internal Wrangler 2000)

7. "Halloween Theme (Main Title)" - John Carpenter (Halloween [Original Score] 1978)

8. "21st Century Schizoid Man/Mirrors" - King Crimson (In the Court of King Crimson 1969)

9. "Der Erlkönig" - Franz Schubert [poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe] (Opus 1 D328 1815)

10. "Closer" - Nine Inch Nails (The Downward Spiral 1994)

11. "Mysterons" - Portishead (Dummy 1994)

12. "Come to Daddy [Pappy Mix]" - Aphex Twin (Come to Daddy EP 1997)

13. "Careful with that Axe, Eugene" - Pink Floyd (Ummagumma 1969)

Bonus because I have to: "Thriller" - Michael Jackson (Thriller 1982)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Jonseing for Jonsi

           A full house gathered in the close quarters of Fox Theater in Pomona on Monday in eager anticipation of their favorite Icelandic siren, Jonsi. The audience made warm conversation, waitresses hustled up and down tiers of tables compiling drink orders, and always from somewhere else in the room, that one distinguishable laugh echoed a good night.
But as Sigur Ros’ lead singer Jón “Jonsi” þór Birgisson took the stage with his band, the buzzing in the air was replaced with something infinitely more special.
White fog-lights caused Jonsi to glow in front of a huge projection screen that illustrated stories of forest animals sprinting, butterflies fluttering, leaves falling, and water at every pace. And when Jonsi started to strum his guitar and sing out in his signature unearthly falsetto, these animations took real life. They started to feed the audience real life aurally. 
When Jonsi opened his mouth, he put listeners in a happy trance. He stirred water in the deepest parts of hearts and made every problem on the planet feel ages away. He weaved stories from his soul and cried them out to us in words that only our hearts could understand.
Experiencing Jonsi play is like dreaming about love. Every note and sway of his voice strikes beautiful chords across heart-strings, and his humble presence is inspiring. 
Each band member seemed to have actually stitched together his own whimsical outfit from fairy tales. Jonsi wore a long, plaid shirt held together by patches and strips of other plaid shirts. Dozens of long ribbons with feathers and beads hung from his shoulders and arms and danced with his movements.
For his encore, “Grow Till Tall”, Jonsi came out wearing a towering, feathered headdress, and boas to match. Lights shaped like birds flew around the theater and the rolling thunder of þorvaldur þorvaldsson’s drums said goodbye in the only way Jonsi could have been expected to –– by embracing the audience one last time with warm sounds and a voice that pierces every facet of unhappiness with unfathomable joy.

 - Story and photo by Garrett Marshall