Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Summertime = new music time!

Summer = warmer weather, longer days, sun tans, BBQs, bonfires, vacation, Music Fests...and new music! 

  It's almost time to bask in the sunshine with some brand spankin' new tunes! 

Late last week The Strokes announced they're dropping an EP this week! This will be the first new material we've heard from The Strokes in 3 years! The 4 song EP, Future Present Past includes a remix of OBLIVIOUS and will be released via Julian Casablancas' Cult Records.

After a five year wait since Blood Pressures, my favorite British/America rock duo, The Kills are finally coming out with a new album! Videos for "Heart of a Dog" and "Siberian Nights" off of the forth-coming Ash & Ice have been circulating for a little while now but the whole shebang comes to us on June 3rd!  The Kills are on the road in support of what will be their 5th album now! 

Video for The Kills "Siberian Nights" off of Ash & Ice directed by Giovanni Ribisi 

It's only been a year since we heard from retro, rastafarian, dub-rockers Rebelution but they're ready to welcome their sixth studio album, Falling into Place on June 3rd!  

The Temper Trap are back! The eagerly awaited third album from the Aussie indie-rockers drops on June 10th followed by an extensive North American tour. Thick as Thieves is the first time The Temper Trap have worked with outside songwriters....can't wait to hear their exploits into different musical frontiers!

The Red Hot Chili Peppers are bringing the heat this Summer! The Getaway will be here on June 17th! It's The Peppers 10th album since their 1984 self-title debut!  Currently on a Music Fest circuit RHCP's funky, alternative, chill vibe make for a great festival experience so it's perfect that they're bringing their new (and old) tunes to the masses!

Red Hot Chili Peppers @ Bottle Rock 2016
Photo by Marc Fong 
Red Hot Chili Peppers @ Bottle Rock 2016
Photo by Marc Fong 

The latest teaser from my favorite bad-girl, world music,  M.I.A is a two -part song called "OLA + Foreign Friend". If things go well with her American record label, her 5th album Matahdatah could be out in full sometime this year!

Freak-a-deaks Die Antwoord went reggae on one of their new singles, "Dazed & Confused". You'll want to light a doobie when you enjoy this newbie that takes you down a trippy path. Things get steamy on the other new single "Gucci Coochie" featuring strip teaser, Dita Von Teese
No woord on an album release date.  

Justin Timberlake has already taken the crown for the song of Summer 2016 with his hit single, "Can't Stop the Feeling." Move over Bieber cause our Justin is BACK! "Suit and Tie" was OK but it just isn't as fun as his new one! It has everything: JT's famous fallseto, snapping, clapping, even a choir like chorus! "Can't Stop the Feeling" will have you singing and dancing the rest of the year!   

Thursday, May 26, 2016

VERITE coming to The Rickshaw Stop May 31st!

The DIY  songstress from Brooklyn, VERITE is on tour in support of her 3rd EP Living which dropped on May 6th! 

The 26 year old singer, songwriter, pianist has released an EP every year since her debut in 2014 leading to her first ever headlining tour in 2015 subsequently landing her sets at Lollapalooza, Firefly and SXSW! 

New singles, "Underdressed" and "Constant Crush" are already garnering attention as her popularity as a fresh, alt-syth-pop artist keeps growing! With only 12 show dates, her current tour is coming to an end soon but not before she plays in the city by the bay! VERITE will be at The Rickshaw Stop on Tuesday May 31st! It's the second to last show of her tour which officially wraps up at The Echo in LA on Thursday June 2nd!

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Rogue Wave @ The Independent 5/7/2016

It's been just about three years since  hearing anything from Oakland's acclaimed Indie band, Rogue Wave but on Saturday May 7th they returned to The Independent in support of their newly released 6th album, Delusions of Grand Fur.

Rogue Wave @ The Independent 5/7/2016
photo by Nikki DeMartini

Rogue Wave @ The Independent 5/7/2016
photo by Nikki DeMartini
After a stale opening set  from White Cloud, also from Oakland, show goers were more than ready for the headliners. Zach Schwartz (a.k.a Zach Rogue) was his usual very stoic self but the energy in the room perked up significantly when Rogue Wave hit the stage. They welcomed fans to their new, lighter, ambient sound with six songs off Delusions Of Grand Fur topping the set, including the lustrous track, "Ocean". The new tunes from their highly anticipated 6th album resonated sublimely with the crowd and the positive reaction made Schwartz glow, casting a sense of comfort across the venue. 

Though the layers of dreamy cerebral indie rock have been replaced with more synthy, ominous, new-wave melodies, the sound they're famous for is still present but it's more of an indie-rock feel now. Sparking applause when he mentioned that it was good to be back, the frontman segued into the first throw back of the night, "College" from Nightingale Floors, their 5th album. 

All of the components from the steadfast guitar, to dynamic keys and rolling drums were on point as the Bay Area native band played at least one song from each album in their catalogue. Energy in the room didn't dim at all as the band fed off their fan's high spirits. The three song en-core consisted of two songs from their 2nd album: "California" and "Publish My Love" as well as "Like I Needed" off their 3rd album.  The highlight of the night for me was getting tingles hearing them play the serenely romantic "Eyes" in the middle for the set. 

It was great homecoming show to welcome Rogue Wave back! 

 set-list 5/7/2016 
1. Take It Slow
2. Ocean 
3. Look At Me
4. Endless Supply 
5. College 
6. Salesman At The Day Parade 
7. Nourishment Nation
8. California Bride
9. What Is Left To Solve 
10. Memento Mori 
11. Lake Michigan 

1. California 
2. Like I Needed 
3. Publish My Love 

Friday, May 20, 2016

Gin Wigmore @ The Independent 5/1/2016

Gin Wigmore & Matthew Santos @ The Independent 5/1/2016
photo by Nikki DeMartini

The Independent kicked off the month of May with a down right rockin' show from Gin Wigmore on Sunday May 1st!

The LA based songstress from New Zealand was a firecracker full of spunk and pizazz parading around the stage with an unrelenting yet welcoming confidence. A perfect counterpart to her all male band, the blonde haired pistol was every part rock N roll in black micro shorts, ankle high Doc Martins, an oversized worn-out T-shirt and her raw talent of course. Her sound is an edgy hybrid of Elle King's modern country twang with vibrato nasally vocals like OG Gwen Stefani: it's as deep and soulful as it is wholesomely grunge. 

Gin Wigmore & Matthew Santos @ The Independent 5/1/2016
photo by Nikki DeMartini

The 15 song long set-list was booked ended with tracks off of her critically acclaimed third album, 2015's Blood to Bone: the fiercely uninhibited first single from it, "Willing to Die" invited fans to dance while "Willing to Love You" closed out the show in a tender, bad-ass way. The band was a cohesive unit behind the main driving force of the night. Equally driven by heavy guitar and flourishing drums, they sounded like a well rehearsed garage rock band spiked with dashing keys. 

Gin Wigmore & Matthew Santos @ The Independent 5/1/2016
photo by Nikki DeMartini
Spreading her swagger all around the stage, Gin (short for Virginia) charismatically connected with every one of her bandmates, dominated a friendly duet with the opener, Matthew Santos about half way threw the set and she humbly connected with the crowd between just about every song all night long. She reminds me of the mysterious bad girl with a killer style and powerful voice you wanted on your good side in High School. She's one bad-ass musician and she puts on one helluva show! 

Her North American tour ended a few days after her show in San Francisco but if you missed her this time, check out the video for "Willing to Die" for a taste of how crafty and cool Gin Wigmore is! 

Set List 5/1/2016 
1. Willing to Die
2. New Rush 
3. Black Parade 
4. Kill of the Night 
5. 24
6. If Only 
7. Nothing To No One 
8. Devil In Me 
9. Dirty Love 
10. Black Sheep 
11. One Last Look
12. Written In The Water 
13. Man Like That 
14. Sweet Hell 
15. I Will Love You 

Friday, May 13, 2016

Cupcakes at Basecamp

Photo by Nikki DeMartini

A Basecamp member came to the Burlingame studio for an afternoon class with the cutest portable cupcake holder full of cupcakes. All of the staff members thought she was joking when she told us that the cupcakes were for us, but she wasn't!

Photo by Nikki DeMartini

The cupcake carrier was as cute as it was awesome: it was shaped like a cupcake and it had stackable tiers so the cupcakes wouldn't get smushed! I was very impressed with how well decorated her cupcakes were, so much so that I can safely say they are the cutest homemade cupcakes I've ever had the pleasure of eating. She must have a decorating kit because the frosting was picture perfect! 

Photo by Nikki DeMartini

Photo by Nikki DeMartini
All of them had chocolate frosting and half of the batch had a swirly design with tiny round rainbow sprinkles. The other half of the batch had little dollops of frosting all over the top and each dollop was topped off with a white pearl candy. She told us that some of them were vanilla cake and some were chocolate cake but you couldn't really tell what flavor you were choosing because you can only see the top of the cupcakes when they're in the container. I'm a sucker for rainbow sprinkles, so I picked one of those  and it ended up being a chocolate on chocolate one. The cake was super fluffy and light and the frosting was also light and sugary. I forgot to ask if she made them from scratch or not but I have a feeling that they were from a packaged mix. 

Photo by Nikki DeMartini

I just had the one cupcake but some of my coworkers (who are HIIT class instructors) admitted to having five cupcakes that day! We may work at a gym but that doesn't mean we don't indulge or in some cases, over-indulge. With that said though I was happy that I got my workout in beforehand! 
It was very sweet of our member to surprise us with treats,  our Basecampers are pretty great!  

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Popscene's 21st B-Day Celebration Night 1 with Local Natives 4/28/2016

Popscene, San Francisco's Premier Indie Nightclub, celebrated their 21st anniversary with two nights in a row of music on April 28th and 29th! Even though it was only announced two days before the show that the LA based band Local Natives would be headlining, they ended up playing to packed house!

Local Natives at Popscene 4/28/2016
Photo by Marc Fong 
MUNA got the party started with their 90's inspired moody indie tunes, including songs off their (then) forthcoming EP, The Loudspeaker (available now). Their lively stage presence and amped banter got the crowd even more pumped than they already were. Chatting transitioned into clapping when the music over the sound system, spun by co-founder DJ Aaron Axelsen,  seized and the five members of Local Natives walked on stage. Saying thanks as they got situated, they kicked things off quick and mellow, allowing the crowd to get to their level. Energy on the dance floor continued to sizzle while drum driven, guitar layered mellow dramatic indie-rock engulfed the venue from the shadows of the small stage. 

Local Natives at Popscene 4/28/2016
Photo by Marc Fong 

The afro-pop induced guitar riffs sweetly accentuated the chill vibe of their songs from both albums that filled their set. The triple harmonization of Rice, Ayer and Hahn brightened up the psych-folk sound, tickling your ear drums in a sweetly mesmerizing way.  

They spiced up original versions of some songs with instrumental spins, impromptu solos and pseudo-jams which is always cool when bands do that and are able to pull it off live. Front man Taylor Rice was as charming as he was engaging as he hopped from his guitar and keyboard, making the already intimate show that much more personable. 

Local Natives at Popscene 4/28/2016
Photo by Marc Fong 

The celebration didn't stop there! On Friday night Popscene went old school, throwing a dance party with special guest DJ, Michael Deni of Geographer (a local band but not a SF native)! What better way to celebrate a night club that has brought this diverse city together with good live shows than with two nights of great music?! Thank you Popscene! Cheers to another 21 years of fun nights filled great new music! 

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Day Wave @ The Independent 4/25/2016

Last Monday night marked the SF debut of Jackson Phillips', Day Wave headlining show with English Hazel and Hot Flash Heat Wave opening for him at The Independent!

Day Wave at The Independent 4/25/2016
photo by Marc Fong 

Day Wave at The Independent 4/25/2016
photo by Marc Fong 

Hot off the heels of a two month European tour  in support of the recently released sophomore EP Hard to Read, the show at The Independent last week was technically the second time they've headlined in SF: they headlined a NoisePop show at The Rickshaw Stop earlier this year, but Monday night was the first time that Phillips' latest solo project headlined a show, on their own headlining tour, in San Francisco!

Day Wave at The Independent 4/25/2016
photo by Marc Fong 
The crowd had settled in by the time both openers were over but they did get a bit antsy as they waited for Day Wave. It was about 10:00 when Phillips' and his accompanying touring band took their places and they had a friendly demeanor right off the bat. Happy cheers turned to a questioning silence as it became apparent there was a technical difficulty when absolutely no sound could be heard from the frontman's guitar! Phillips stayed on stage, making light of the situation and tried to strike conversation with fans as stage hands replaced his blown amp with a back-up house amp. 

Things worked out after a few minutes and everyone was very happy to see that the show would go on! It was actually a great introduction to the multi-instrumentalist/singer-songwriter for those not too familiar with him because it showed how good of a guy he really is: both of the openers used his amp and equipment, which they did without a glitch, then his set started with a hiccup but it didn't phase him: the smile that he hit the stage with stayed in place until they started playing and thereafter! 

Day Wave at The Independent 4/25/2016
photo by Marc Fong 

That excitement carried on into the show, fueling the positive energy in the room. Warm layers of synth-pop swirled with surf-rock induced guitar licks as Phillips' effortlessly carried the set and show-goers just melted into it. The consistent blue and purple lighting was the only thing that might have put a damper on Day Wave but the Summer time vibes of the tunes from the two EPs shone through. The show got off to a rocky start but it ended as a down to earth dance party! 

Day Wave's last show in the US is May 14th in Atlanta and two short days later they start their run in the UK! This is a great show to see heading into Summer!

Hard to Read is out now!