The pop menagerie: The view from my cage.
Easily embarrassed by the recent attention I've been getting, I would like to redirect some to other deserving local (SF / Bay Area, USA) musicians I've heard or seen recently. Particularly, this post is pointedly directed to the music industry lurkers that I'm catching in my referrer logs.
From light to dark:
The Foibles - An inspired and madly intelligent walk through the pop zoo. Almost pastiche, but it feels too original to be labeled as such. All of my buttons are pushed -- hard. Every turn-of-phrase, catchy hook, and exquisite pop affect has been tweezed from my childhood reminiscence and cleverly managed and repurposed. The album is an amazing gem. Download "Song About a Pencil on a Bus for Jen" from my server (Warning: Be patient, the song doesn't really start until 26 seconds in. And the download might be a little slow). Also available are: Theme Songs, Forty-three Masonic, Since Pink Left, and Lolly Pop Tar. Want the album? They don't have a website yet, but you can email Phil, the boy behind the music, at CrankandRattle@hotmail.com.
The Skyflakes - Adorable. May remind you of a sweet crush you once had, but one cuter and brighter than the boy/girl you lusted after in gym class/university/cell block D/the visiting U.N. delegation. They may inspire you to dance in your underwear. They're nice, fun, they share Dealership's mind/art space, and they're local. She sweetly sings "It's - not - you. I've - got - things - to - do..." Maybe we could do a show together. Or would that be just too much cute in a single sitting? :)
Technicolor - Crafts wonderful, maddeningly entrancing electronic stuff. Sounds you may hear in your head when you view a pulsar through a telescope; all constructed from pulses, noises, and beats. If you see them live, you might catch (in the visuals projected behind them) the light cycles from Tron zooming around - synchronized to the music. Only just a four-song EP out now, but very much worth your money and time. So, Chris, you ask,... is anybody in the band a programmer? I can answer that in two words. "Um? Duh."
From Monument To Masses - Future superstars. A great live band. Watch them get huge. Like Fritz the Cat, an unending bag of sonic tricks. (I love the guitar delay.) I'll make a prediction...that they will tire of the term "math rock" long before it will cease being used when describing them. You'll kick yourself if you didn't get to see them before they got big, so why not go and see them right now? Now. Go.
Ent - Like a well-built pipe bomb. Explosive, but precisely timed. The meter shifts like pieces on a chessboard, that is to say, cleverly. To me, anyway. Might inspire a fistfight. But in a good way. A clean, transcendental, healing fistfight.
Grey Scale Portrait - Sweet, confessional, a quiet, then not-so-quiet wail. Lovely. The damage and the phonograph needle done. No website yet, and I haven't made mp3s yet... Stay tuned.
Film School - One of the greatest band names ever. (For me, tied with "death cab for cutie") Their music is a slow, intense and beautiful burn. You know that night after you found out he/she was cheating on you? It aches like that.
The Drama - Deeply in touch with the vernacular connotation of their name. As of 2002, at least. They're young. They're intense. They wear all black. The singer emits a series of long keening sounds. The bassist broods and glares. The drummer (is she even 5'0"?) explodes and chews the scenery - all fury and spit with a shock of red hair that matches the flames on her kit. Wish I played that well.
In related non-local music news, Barcelona officially calls it quits next Monday. Damn. To the developers qua computer programmers who come by on occassion - I think you would've loved them. They created my favorite geek rock song of all time, "I have the password to your shell account." (mp3)
Birth and rebirth, though. Someone'll pick up the baton and make the next indiepop geek hit for us. Though, in order to top B'lona it'll have to be named something like "Discrete Fourier Transforms."