by Brad Roberts
January was such a surprising and exciting month for music in this town, that I wonder if February can keep up. Judging from this week, it's off to a good start. I'll stop sounding like a broken record next week as this is the last of the Seasons residency nights on Monday at The Echo, but tonight they are appearing with a string quartet and horn section(!), so again they are the show of the week. This should be quite the blow-out with Robotanists, Little Red Lung and Paulie Pesh on the bill. When Seasons take the stage, which should fill up like a can of sardines, the sound will be overwhelming. In addition to selections from the four EP's they've been highlighting all month, I'm sure there will be unexpected surprises. I can't wait! The book cover illustration above is by Marshall Peck III.
A genuine rock and roll legend who deserves this stature is Jorma Kaukonen, who's been playing for nearly fifty years, in Jefferson Airplane, Jefferson Starship, Hot Tuna and as a solo act, has four sold out shows on Friday and Saturday at McCabe's. He plays this gig occasionally and it is always sold out by the time I hear about it. Damn! I must keep a closer watch on McCabe's concert listings.
I'm real happy to see Aaron Embry back out making music. Ever since I got to know Aaron and Nikki Embry through Amnion, I've been a fan of his unique and inspired abilities. He has a date in Venice on Monday, which I can't attend, but I'll be at Hotel Cafe on Thursday where he appears at nine o'clock. And on Saturday I'm hosting another Feed Your Head show at Lot 1 with a sparkling line up Cody The Band, The Health Club, Socialistics and Fort KIng.
Monday, January 30
- Seasons, Robotanists, Little Red Lung, Paulie Pesh @ The Echo
- Nada Surf @ Amoeba Music
- David Ryan Harris, Angel Taylor, Courtney Marie Andrews, The Smoking Flowers @ Hotel Cafe
- Future Ghost, Capital Cities, Terraplane Sun @ The Viper Room
- Vinnie Ferra, The Cold Volt, And And And, yOya, Death Songs @ Silver Lake Lounge
- Princeton, NO, Rich Aucoin, DJ Paul Tao @ Bootleg Bar
- "School Night!" w/ Secret Guest!, Chet Faker, DJ set by Beni @ Bardot
- Chasing Kings, Shadow Shadow Shade, Francisco the Man, Eyes Lips Eyes @ The Satellite
- Mo-Odds, Restavrant @ Redwood Bar
- VUM, Aaron Embry, Eve Kemp, DJ Tanner @ Townhouse at The Del Monte (Venice)
The month's residencies finish up with a bang. I've been so devoted to the Seasons nights at The Echo, that I regret a lot of the music I had to miss. Tonight is no different with way too many good shows to see, as Princeton plays host to NO at Bootleg Bar, Shadow Shadow Shade and Francisco the Man play the Chasing Kings show at The Satellite. There's also sets by Aaron Embry at the Townhouse at The Del Monte in Venice, Future Ghost head a nice indie rock bill at The Viper Room and Restavrant play Redwood Bar but as Feed Your Head is presenting this week's Seasons extravaganza, that's where I must be.
With a program that includes Paulie Pesh, performing their splendidly unabashed orchestral pop, Little Red Lung, whose stylish vocals are encased in dreamy chamber orchestrations, and Robotanists, with their own strong songwriting and complex arrangements, Seasons will be hosting a night of gorgeous music. There will be 12 members of the band tonight, so expect the four seasons to collide onstage creating a cyclone or hurricane or, at the very least, a thunderstorm...or a bear.
Tuesday, January 31
- Touché, Monte Mar, Death Kit, Paradise, Janitor @ The Central
- Nick Kroll @ Largo at the Coronet
- King Washington, James Carrington & Craig Eastman, The Roof Beam Carpenters, Gabrielle Wortman @ Hotel Cafe
- Jessie Baylin, The Watson Twins @ The Troubadour
- Le Mutant, Black Boots, House Sounds, Straight Dimes @ Lot 1
- Side 8, Garland, Archer Black, Early Dolphin @ Silver Lake Lounge
- Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., The One AM Radio @ Echoplex
- K.Flay @ The Echo
- Atomic Tom, The Dance Party, Polaris at Noon @ Bootleg Bar
- Last American Buffalo, Broken Numbers Band, Wildcat Wildcat!n @ Harvard & Stone
- The Blackout Trust @ The Terrace (Pasadena)
Moving on out of Silver Lake, shows are scattered through the environs. Last American Buffalo are playing in Hollywood at Harvard & Stone, while in West Hollywood The Watson Twins (at right) open for Jessie Baylin at The Troubadour. Touché close out their residency in Santa Monica at The Central with Monte Mar and Death Kit.
Wednesday, February 1
- Milow, Jamestown Revival, All Spots To Black @ Hotel Cafe
- Act As If, LA Girlfriend, 2 Hearts and Chemicals @ The Satellite
- Fujiya & Miyagi, Evan Voytas, TV Girl @ The Echo
- Amy Kuney, Jesse Thomas, Stephen Wrabel @ Bootleg Bar
- The Abigails, Airships @ 3 of Clubs
- TS and The Past Haunts, Kate Crash, Heywood @ Silver Lake Lounge
Thursday, February 2
- Ed Sheeran w/ special guests, Antonio Beleveau from The Crash Kings, Aaron Embry, The Spectacles @ Hotel Cafe
- Doomtree, 2Mex @ The Troubadour
- Gotye, Hot as Sun @ El Rey
- M. Ward @ The Masonic Lodge at Hollywood Forever Cemetery
- MUTEMATH @ Club Nokia
- SeanShan, New Division @ The Airliner
- Black Bananas record release, Pink Mountaintops, Cold Showers @ The Echo
- The 4onthefloor @ The Satellite
- News of the Fire, Between the Cities and Stars, Invisible Animals @ Silver Lake Lounge
- So Many Wizards, Fritz Sender, Grumble Grumble, Vinyl Williams @ The Smell
- The Features, Duniven @ Bootleg Bar
I'm very much looking forward to seeing Aaron Embry (at right) after the buzz he generated when he played at the Bootleg a couple of weeks ago. Performing in the intimate, dark comfort of Hotel Cafe should be similar to when I saw him performing solo at Tangier back in November 2008 where I was bowled over by the acoustic performance of some of his complex compositions, allowing the audience a window into his creative process. I've never forgotten that show.
I also recommend SeanShan at The Airliner, Duniven is on the bill with The Features at Bootleg and So Many Wizards play The Smell tonight. M. Ward is doing a show at The Hollywood Forever Cemetery in the Masonic Lodge where it should be a perfect coalescence of artist, venue and audience. There's plenty to get you out the house tonight.
Friday, February 3
- "First Fridays" w/ The Soft Moon, Light Asylum, Julia Holter @ Natural History Museum of L.A.
- Jorma Kaukonen @ McCabe's (8 & 10 PM)
- Rocco Deluca, Javier Dunn, Goodnight Texas, David & Devine, Halle & The Jilt @ Hotel Cafe
- Martin Sexton, Adam Gontier (solo) @ El Rey
- Eleanor Friedberger, Dominant Legs @ The Troubadour
- Nick Offerman's "American Ham" @ Largo at the Coronet
- Saint Sea Hat, Helena, Las Brujas @ Lot 1
- Tuesday Glass, Honeydrip, Gangi @ Space 15 Twenty
- Ethan Gold @ The Satellite
- Twin Sister, Ava Luna, Talkdemonic @ The Echo
- Jarrod Gorbel (solo), Madi Diaz, Kelly Jones @ Bootleg Theatre
- The Chuck Dukowski Sextet, Guy Blakeslee, Jeffertitti's Nile @ The Smell
- Wet Power, Falsetto Teeth, Blood Man @ Pehrspace
- Sweaters, Bikos @ Taix Lounge
I first saw Jorma Kaukonen (at right) when the Airplane came thru Boston on tour for the brand new album, Volunteers, in October 1969 and I knew right then and there that I was in the presence of a guitar wizard. I never hear about his current shows to beat the rush for tickets and tonight and tomorrow's two shows a piece at McCabe's are sold out. I could always tell from the Jefferson Aiplane concerts and recordings that he was one fine guitarist, but the shows with Hot Tuna showed a wider range and his amazing dexterity on the instrument. And now, in retrospect, as a lot of this music is still as fresh and adventurous as when it was written, his compositions stand side by side with the best of the Airplane's music. Just listen to "Third Week In The Chelsea" from Bark as an example in which he reveals his take on the break up of the band in 1971, with Grace Slick providing harmony in a song about dis-harmony.
Since I can't see that I think I'll head over to Space 15 Twenty for the free show presented by Absent Fever and Jaxart featuring a favorite I haven't seen in a while, Gangi. The experimental psych-rock that comes out of Matt Gangi is very much to my taste. After that I should head over to Lot 1 to catch Saint Sea Hat if the timing is right. And then finish up the night with a late set with Bikos at Taix Lounge. That would be a full meal.
Saturday, February 4
- Alice Smith, Storm Large w/ special guests, Tyler Hilton, Chris Pierce @ Hotel Cafe
- Luther Russell w/ tabla player Pial Hossain @ Origami Vinyl
- "Move L.A." w/ Michael Nhat, Evan apRoberts @ Sancho
- Emilie Autumn @ El Rey
- Death To Anders, Escalator Hill, Coyote @ Casey's Bar
- Jorma Kaukonen @ McCabe's
- Feed Your Head presents Cody The Band, Socialistics, The Health Club, Fort King @ Lot 1
- Steve Watts, Naive Melodies, Slips Into Space @ The Troubadour
- Ema and Her Lady Parts, Derde Verde, Princess Pangolin, Miniature Houses @ Perhrspace
- Haim, Mini Mansions, Pratley @ Bootleg Bar
- Jeremy Jay, Sea Lions, Some Days, Dead Angle @ The Smell
Very big night with Death To Anders kicking off a residency at Casey's Bar, Ema and Her Lady Parts at Pehrspace and my Feed Your Head monthly show at Lot 1 starring Cody The Band. There's also Mini Mansions at Bootleg and Evan apRoberts performs at a place called Sancho for a gallery opening by the Centaur Art Collective. Jorma Kaukonen finishes his run at McCabe's.
I'm very happy with the way the bill has shaped up for my sixth monthly show at Lot 1. I had asked Cody Hudock if his band, Cody The Band, would play for my show a few months ago. He declined, but he had the best excuse in the world. He was getting married that day. He's making up for it tonight and he brought along Andy Siara of The Henry Clay People and Claire Mckeown of Shadow Shadow Shade in the duet called Socialistics. I asked The Health Club after they blew me away at the Seasons residency last week and my good friend, Fort King agreed to an opening spot. Turns out to be a very strong bill.
Sunday, February 5
- PROTECTME, Magick Orchids, Scape Native, In Tents @ The Smell
- Indian Jewelry, Jewels of the Nile @ The Echo
- Where's The Band?, Dustin Kensrue, Chris Conley, Ace Enders, Anthony Raneri, Matt Pryor, Evan Weiss @ The Troubadour
- Red Robot w/ Strings, Sophia Louise, Deux Sons @ Bootleg Theatre
What else? RFSLshowlistings@gmail.com