Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Coachella 2010, Day 1: Oh, the humanity!

It's April, and for me that means one thing: Coachella.  After being drawn to the desert in 2004 by Radiohead and the Pixies, I've been every year since.  As I like to say, it's the greatest weekend of my life and it happens every year.  That may be a bit hyperbolic, but only a bit.  Nowhere else can I see so many bands all in the same place, and it's more or less guaranteed to surprise me.  This year was no different, though it did get off to a rocky start.  In the days leading up to the festival Goldenvoice had announced that the festival was sold out, and that the number of tickets sold was 75,000, the most I can remember in the seven years I've been going.  So I anticipated a lot of people, but what I encountered was another thing entirely.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

More Than Alright

On Monday, the music world suffered a loss that will be overlooked by far too many: Supergrass broke up.  I know they weren't especially well known over here, only coming out to tour every few years or so, but I've loved them for a long time, even going so far as to include their most recent (sigh, final) album on my best of the decade list.  Perhaps ignored because of their penchant for silliness, the band went from a mashup of influences such as the Kinks and Buzzcocks to a legitimate rock force with which to be reckoned.  When they released their debut, I Should Coco, in 1995, a friend of mine had heard about them from his older sister, and we would listen to "Caught by the Fuzz" and "I Don't Know" constantly.  I still remember staying up until midnight on Saturdays to catch MTV's 120 Minutes video show--since it was the only place to see cool stuff that was still under the radar--hoping to catch the video for "Caught by the Fuzz."  Wow, imagine MTV still being a source of interesting music!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Bad Religion at House of Blues Anaheim, 4/1/10

I knew when I did my huge lists of my favorite albums of the decade I would leave stuff out.  It's just the nature of lists that we forget things, no matter how long we spend putting it together.  But boy, did I commit an egregious error when I left out Bad Religion.  I ignored another of my favorite bands, Rocket From The Crypt, because I didn't feel anything they put out in that time span was quite good enough.  Bad Religion, on the other hand, had a major creative upswing in the 2000's when founding member Brett Gurewitz came back, and the first album they did after the reunion, The Process of Belief, absolutely deserved to make the list.  I admit, sometimes I'm remiss.  After seeing them again recently, I feel even worse about it, but I'm confident they still have some strong material in them, something that'll make my inevitable list of the 10's.  (What follows is likely to be long, so consider yourself warned.)

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Surfer Blood at Detroit Bar, 3/28/10

Living in Southern California brings with it many perks: Mexican food; the weather; the beach (if you're into that kind of thing); Mexican food; In-N-Out; Legoland and, of course, Mexican food.  But perhaps the best thing about living here is the abundance of concerts constantly taking place within driving distance.  I don't even know how I'd adjust if I moved somewhere more isolated; I can deal with a slower pace, but where's my live music???  And sometimes you don't even have to drive to LA or Pomona or San Diego, because sometimes buzz bands make stops in little bars like Detroit in Costa Mesa.  (I was once lucky enough to catch Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Liars and Jon Spencer Blues Explosion there right before YYYs blew up, but now I'm just bragging...).  This was the case last Sunday, when Surfer Blood showed up in Orange County.