Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Milo Greene – Releases a New Single and Starts Touring

     We became aware of the Los Angeles band Milo Greene thanks to obsessive behavior in collecting songs with titles that are merely years in the 20th century. For Milo Greene, the year-based title is “1957” (technically, the title may have been an address). However, we didn’t become aware of the performance skills of Milo Greene until we migrated to their set at the Outside Lands Festival in 2013. Listening to recorded music from the band did not provide preparation for the combination of guitar and harmonization talent that was readily apparent at Outside Lands.
     So, the obvious decision was to watch for the next opportunity to see Milo Greene in a more intimate setting. When the tour announcement was that the band would open for Bombay Bicycle Club, we grabbed tickets.  
     Milo Greene has been working on new music. To quote their website, “After a full year of writing, demoing, recording, mixing, mastering, and nitpicking, our new album, “Control”, will be available January 27th, 2015.” The first single is “White Lies.” It fits more easily into the Pop genre than we would prefer, but we’re still looking forward to seeing it live at The Warfield on October 5.
     The members of Milo Greene are Robbie Arnett, Graham Fink, Marlana Sheetz, Andrew Heringer and Curtis Marrero.

     “White Lies” by Milo Greeene

     “1957” by Milo Greeene

     “Cutty Love” by Milo Greeene

OCTOBER TOUR DATES OF MILO GREENE (with Bombay Bicycle Club except * - the final three)
1              San Diego, CA                                       SOMA
2              Tempe, AZ                                             Marquee Theatre
3              Los Angeles, CA                                    Wiltern Theatre
4              Pomona, CA                                          The Glass House
5              San Francisco, CA                                 Warfield Theatre
7              Seattle, WA                                           The Showbox
9              Edmonton, AB                                       Starlite Room
10            Calgary, AB                                           MacEwan Ballroom
12            Winnipeg, ON                                        Garrick Centre
13            Minneapolis, MN                                    First Avenue
14            Chicago, IL                                             Park West
16            Toronto, ON                                           Kool Haus
17            Ottawa, ON                                            Algonquin Theater
18            Boston, MA                                            House of Blues
19            Washington, DC                                     9:30 Club
21            Philadelphia, PA                                     Union Transfer
22            New York, NY                                         Terminal 5
24            Atlanta, GA                                             The Masquerade
25            Nashville, TN                                          The Stone Fox *
26            Birmingham, AL                                      Vulcan After Tunes *
28            Dallas, TX                                               The Loft *

Monday, September 29, 2014

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass – Survival Tips

     This weekend is the FREE festival in San Francisco. The Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival is held at Golden Gate Park. This post provides the schedule and some survival tips. If time allows, we add some recommendations in later posts. Admittedly, there are plenty of scheduled performers about whom we are relatively clueless.  

Friday, October 3
Star Stage
10:30am Poor Man's Whiskey
11:30am The Aquabats!
1:30pm Thao & The Get Down Stay Down
2:45pm Dave Alvin & Phil Alvin with The Guilty Ones
4:30pm Lucinda Williams

Banjo Stage
12:00pm Peter Rowan's Twang An' Groove
1:15pm The Waybacks
2:40pm John Prine
4:15pm Dry Branch Fire Squad
5:45pm Ryan Adams

Arrow Stage
12:00pm Bill Kirchen & Too Much Fun
1:15pm Buckwheat Zydeco
2:35pm Hurray For The Riff Raff
4:00pm Cibo Matto with Nels Cline
5:45pm Yo La Tengo

Rooster Stage
12:00pm Waxahatchee
1:00pm The Good Life
2:10pm Jonathan Wilson
3:20pm Sharon Van Etten
4:30pm Dawes
5:45pm Conor Oberst

Saturday, October 4:
Star Stage
11:00am Whograss
12:30pm Bad Luck Jonathan
2:10pm Justin Townes Earle
3:55pm Mavis Staples
5:45pm Chris Isaak

Banjo Stage
11:00am McCrary Sisters
12:10pm Alison Brown Quintet
1:25pm The Time Jumpers Featuring Vince Gill, Kenny Sears, Dawn Sears and Ranger Doug Green
2:45pm Holler Down The Hollow: A Hardly Strictly Salute To the Masters (Dickens, Hellman, Reed, Scruggs, Seeger, Watson & Winchester)
4:25pm Dave Rawlings Machine
5:45pm Steve Earle & The Dukes

Rooster Stage
11:00am Carlene Carter
12:15pm Buddy Miller's Cavalcade of Stars: Kate York, Striking Matches, Nikki Lane, Shawn Colvin, Tony Joe White, Buddy Miller & Friends with Doug Seegers, Sam Palladio & McCrary Sisters
5:30pm Robert Earl Keen

Arrow Stage
11:00am Evolfo
12:05pm Blue Rodeo
1:15pm Johnnyswim
2:30pm St. Paul & The Broken Bones
3:50pm Jon Batiste and Stay Human
4:55pm Reckless Kelly
6:15pm The Flatlanders Featuring Joe Ely, Jimmie Dale Gilmore & Butch Hancock

Gold Stage
11:40am Red Baraat
1:20pm Deltron 3030 with The 3030 Orchestra
3:05pm Built To Spill
4:45pm Social Distortion

Porch Stage
11:00am The Mastersons
12:10pm Rose's Pawn Shop
1:25pm The Felice Brothers
2:40pm Parker Millsap
3:50pm Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas
4:50pm Chris Smither
6:05pm Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds

Bandwagon Stage
11:40am Horseshoe Hill
2:00pm Willie Watson
3:20pm Heidi Clare

Sunday, October 5:
Star Stage
11:45am Robbie Fulks
1:15pm The Lone Bellow
2:50pm Rosanne Cash
4:30pm Lake Street Dive
6:10pm Bruce Cockburn

Banjo Stage
11:00am Malawi Mouse Boys
12:05pm Hot Rize Featuring Red Knuckles & The Trailblazers
1:25pm Jerry Douglas Presents Earls of Leicester
2:45pm Ralph Stanley & The Clinch Mountain Boys
4:05pm Tweedy
5:45pm Emmylou Harris

Rooster Stage
11:00am The Go To Hell Man Clan
12:10pm Kevin Welch & Kieran Kane & Fats Kaplin
1:25pm Sun Kil Moon
2:45pm Chuck Prophet & the Mission Express
4:00pm T Bone Burnett
5:30pm Jason Isbell

Arrow Stage
11:00am The Sam Chase
12:10pm Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
1:25pm Moonalice
2:45pm Blackie & The Rodeo Kings
4:10pm Lukas Nelson & Promise of The Real
5:45pm Joe Russo's Almost Dead

Gold Stage
11:00am The Apache Relay
12:30pm Laurie Lewis & The Right Hands
2:00pm Bonnie "Prince" Billy & The Cairo Gang Featuring Dawn McCarthy
3:40pm Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn
5:20pm Dwight Yoakam

Porch Stage
11:00am Jesse DeNatale
12:10pm Chuck Cannon
1:25pm The High Bar Gang
2:40pm Shelly Colvin
3:55pm Caitlin Rose
5:10pm Sarah Jarosz
6:20pm Rising Appalachia

Bandwagon Stage
11:40am Jimmie Dale Gilmore
2:15pm JB Nimble
5:10pm The Brothers Gibb

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Tips:
1. There are two position strategies, which can be labeled “This green grass is mine approach" and “Grass is always greener approach.” The better strategy for you depends on a combination of your personality and the level of your desire to see a particular band(s).
            A. If there is a must-see band in your opinion, then take the first approach - spread a blanket as close as you can to the stage on which the band will perform and then use the blanket as your homestead.
            B. For people like us, who are always wondering what they’re missing, the second approach is better – sample a band for a short time before moving to the next stage, but know that you’re going to be further away with each passing hour.

2. Beer and wine vendors are not allowed to setup an establishment, but you can bring alcohol with you. And it is not difficult to find someone selling a beer for a cheaper-than-expected price.

3. You can bring food. Backpack searches don’t occur, since there isn’t an entrance area.

4. Remember, if you’re tempted to buy something that is illegal, the seller will soon disappear into the masses. Buyer Beware!

5. At the Outside Lands Festival, there are 65,000 people per day, and it is a mess. That is basically the same venue as the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival, which draws nearly three times as many people per day. Be prepared for chaos.

6. There are two stages that are back-to-back. Because the Star Stage and the Towers of Gold Stage are so close, the performances are timed so that one is being used while the other is being prepared. If you are planted in front of one stage (This green grass is mine approach), you won’t see the bands on the other stage, but you’ll hear them. The result is almost continuous music.

7. In past years, the only stage that didn’t become massively overly congested was the Porch Stage. It is small and isn’t assigned the big-named bands, but it is a great opportunity, especially as the day goes on.

8. As you are traveling from one stage to another, look for short lines at the rest room areas, even if you don’t currently feel a need.

9. If you start feeling agitated by the congestion, leave. It is only going to get worse. Leave with a positive attitude.

10. It gets cold in Golden Gate Park. Be prepared – layer up. 

“Moonshine” by Laura Doggett – A Song Review

     The previous blog post referred to female vocals in the falsetto range. This post provides balance, because Laura Doggett’s voice is distinctive in its ability to live comfortably in the lower register.
     Laura Doggett is based in Bath, U.K.

     “Moonshine” by Laura Doggett

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lauradoggettmusic

“Walking on Wires” by Cut Ribbons – A Song Review

     Indie Obsessive doesn’t have a preference of male vocals over female. Well, maybe a slight preference, but it is close. On the other hand, if the voices go into the falsetto range, the clear preference is male. In fact, the difference is so significant that we gravitate toward bands that regularly use male falsetto (for example, our early attraction to Bastille) and resist any gravitational pull by female falsetto. The female voice, by nature, is high enough.
     Hey, there are exceptions. We enjoy the use of female falsetto by the band Cut Ribbons. And Indie Obsessive particularly recommends their song “Walking on Wires.” Cut Ribbons is based in Wales (Llanelli). The members are Aled Rees (vocals and guitar), Anna Griffiths (vocals), Shane Lee (bass), Christian James (guitar), and Caio Griffiths (drums).

     “Walking on Wires” by Cut Ribbons

Sunday, September 28, 2014

“Something Had to Give” by COMPNY – A Song Review

     We believe COMPNY is a UK band from Brighton. But there is some uncertainty. We think the band includes members from Cave Painting, but we’re even less sure of that being accurate. What we can say with confidence is that Indie Obsessive enjoys the echoed, yet pure vocalization of the band vocals in “Something Had to Give.” The slow-play piano at the start is interesting and there are portions with solid guitar work. But the band vocals make the song blogworthy. 
     COMPNY is another band that is launching by playing while behind the curtain. If they continue to produce songs having the strength of “Something Had to Give,” they will be forced to raise that curtain.

       “Something Had to Give” by COMPNY

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Die Antwoord at the Fox Theatre- A Concert Review

Die Antwoord put on an energy-filled show at the Fox Theatre in Oakland on Thursday evening. We have seen them before at an array of venues, one being an outdoor show at Austin City Limits Music Festival in 2012; the show on Thursday compared favorably. The more intimate setting made for an amazing and lively show. Maybe we couldn't hear as well the next day znd we went to work with blind splotches in our eyes, but we would see them again, repeatedly!

Die Antwoord is a South African rave-rap group consisting of female vocalist, Yolandi Visser, male vocalist, Ninja, and DJ Hi Tek.   They are known for their “out-there” appearance designed for shock value in what they refer to as “Zef” culture.

The group released its newest album in June of this year, entitled "Donker Mag;" however they only performed four songs from that album, with “Pitbull Terrier” being one of them.  It is their most popular song from the new album and is featured below. They played most of the songs from the first album “$O$,” and those were the crowd pleasers.  Their encore was “Enter the Ninja”.

If you ever have the opportunity to see Die Antwoord, we would advise to take advantage of that! It was also Ninja’s birthday yesterday, so Happy Birthday Ninja!!

Here is the full setlist from Thursday night at the Fox Theatre: 
1.  DJ Hi-Tek Rulez
2. Fok Julle Naaiers
3. Wat kyk jy?
4. Wat Pomp?
5. Hey Sexy
6. Rat Trapp 666
7. Fatty Boom Boom
8. Girl I want 2 Eat U
9. Raging Zef Boner
10. Rich Bitch
11. Cookie Thumper
12. Pitbull Terrier
13. $copie
14. Beat Boy
15. Evil Boy
16. Baby's on Fire
17. I Fink U Freeky
18. Happy Go Sucky Fucky
19. Never Le Nkemise 2
20. Enter the Ninja