Friday, December 21, 2007

Local Bands' Favorites Of 2007

All apologies for the late post (and for the rare skipped day yesterday), but I've been sifting through an enormous amount of messages I got from bands about their most loved albums and concerts from the last year...

(And then there's the holiday article due early next week that's set to contain more than two dozen FREE MP3s from great local bands... At least half of them new and unreleased, at that.)

But enough about the future, let's see what everyone marked as their favorites for 2007.

Sarah Negahdari, Chris Meanie, & Charlie Mahoney -- The Happy Hollows

There were soooo many amazing shows, but off the top of our heads, these shows stood out. Silversun Pickups at the Fillmore. There were at least three times The Movies played that were the best shows we've ever witnessed, Die Rockers Die at the Echo, Death to Anders at Spaceland, The Mai Shi at Echo, The Soft Hands at the Prospector, Anchors for Architects at Perspace.

And we love love loved these records this year: Tigers Can Bite You - Tigers Can Bite You, Thailand - Motorcade, Anchors For Architects - Moutza!, Rademacher - Stunts, Division Day- Beartrap Island, Blonde Redhead - 23, Deerhoof - Friend Opportunity, The Pity Party - The EP, and Bat for Lashes - Fur and Gold.

Malcolm Sosa - Rademacher

There have been a lot of great shows. I wrote up a couple of them for Duke's blog, You Set The Scene, but right after I sent it to him, I thought of a ton of other great shows I saw this year.

I saw Mike Watt and Thurston Moore play at a pizza parlor in this town near Fresno called Visalia. Mike Watt blew my mind. He played a 20-minute version of Young Man Blues on the bass with a pumpkin on his head. It was absolutely surreal. And then of course just to the left of me at the front of the stage was Thurston Moore with a crazy mask on, nodding his head to the beat. That was awesome.

Also, there is this singer songwriter I LOVE named David Dondero and we put together a show for him in this alley behind an art gallery in Fresno. Whole families came out and the local infoshop hippies set up a little booth full of anarchist literature and a vegan potluck and we drank beer on the street and listened to him play an amazing set where everyone knew the words.

I haven't listened to a lot of "new" records this year, but I like The Monolators vinyl. You Look Good On The Train was on regular rotation in my living room until my needle died. I play the new Earlimart album wayyyyy too much.

Nate Cole - Castledoor

Arcade Fire - Neon Bible
Beirut - The Flying Club Cup
Radiohead - In Rainbows
Papercuts - Can't Go Back
The Good, The Bad & The Queen - (self titled)

Bright Eyes - Sept 29th @ The Hollywood Bowl
Arcade Fire - The Greek Theater
Delta Spirit and Dr. Dog - @ The Echo
Sigur Ros - @ The Vista
Beirut - @ Amoeba

Carl Jordan - The Western States Motel

5 Top Things of 2007 - in random order.

1. GOING TO GRAND CENTRAL MARKET - This place has been operating downtown for something like 80 years. Great food counters in there, as well as some incredibly cheap produce. It has sawdust on the floor, which I like.

2. JURY DUTY – I had to report to one of the courthouses downtown. supposedly you could get in free to the moca with your jury id badge, but when I walked over during the lunch break, I was informed that the museum was closed for a private event.

3. TACO TRUCK ON THE EDGE OF AN ORCHARD – A few hours north of LA on I-5, there’s a lunch truck that is pretty consistently set up in a dirt parking lot at the edge of an orchard. It’s obviously there to feed all the hardworking people who work nearby, so I feel a little bit like a tourist when I go, but now I can’t drive I-5 without wondering if it will be parked there or not.

4. SEA LEVEL CLOSES ITS DOORS – Everybody loved Sea Level. I have nothing new to add here, other than that I’ll miss going there on Sunday afternoons.

5. LA BANDS AND THE PEOPLE THAT SUPPORT THEM - Once in a while I’ll read some piece of music writing in which, for what seems like no particular reason, the writer (usually not based in LA) will mention how lame the LA music scene is. LA is an easy target for a lot of people, and I guess I can understand why, but I feel like the past year has been one which I will now always carry with me. A year where I got to experience so much amazing music, meet so many talented musicians, play with so many great bands, and play for so many cool people. Thanks.

Kim Talon - Eagle & Talon

Favorite show? Robot show at El Cid and the Anchors for Architects finale show with The Primos at Pehrspace.

Favorite record? White Chalk by PJ Harvey.

Everyone from Signal Hill

Favorite Shows Attended of 07:
Tristeza @ The Echo
Feist @ The Wiltern
The Decemberists w/LA Philharmonic & Band of Horses @ Hollywood Bowl

Favorite Shows Played & Attended:
Radio Free Silver Lake's Let's Independent - This show was our first show after not playing awhile, and it happened to fall on Tim's birthday. Brian got lucky finding a super close parking spot and the other bands (xiu xiu fang & in waves) both ruled! All in all an awesome night!
Our CD Release Party @ Pehrspace - Between having our friend Rajiv Patel from Phoenix open the show, playing at one of our favorite venues, and getting to celebrate the release of our first EP which was FINALLY out, it was a fantastic night!

Favorite Albums From 07 (no particular order):
Beware of Safety - It Is Curtains
Feist - The Reminder
Port Blue - The Airship
Pinback - Autumn of the Seraphs
The One Am Radio - This Too Will Pass
Radiohead - In Rainbows
Iron & Wine - The Shepherd's Dog
The Cinematic Orchestra - Ma Fluer
All India Radio - Echo Other
Six Parts Seven - Casually Smashed To Pieces
Message To Bears - EP 1
Awake & Alert - Devil In A Lambskin Suit
Blonde Redhead - 23
El-P - Ill Sleep When Your Dead
Albums Not From 07 Which Got Heavily Played
Helios - Eingya
Xela - Tangled Wool
Tristeza - All
Ida - All
Donovan - Essential Collection

Jason Bays & Colleen Coffey -- The Spires

Favorite Albums (Lld & New), Things, shows, etc... In no particular

1. Frankel - Lullaby For The Passerby. A beautifully put together pop record that can't be denied. That kid's going places.
2. The Sea and Cake - Everybody
3. Being the Velvet Underground for April Fool's at Part Time Punks. Love those PTP guys.
4. Bill Callahan - Woke On A Whaleheart
5. Finding a slightly worn LP of David Crosby - If I Could Only Remember My Name... Right when I was looking for it, too. Such luck.
6. Robert Pollard - Coast To Coast Carpet Of Love (Hooks up the Wazoo)
7. No Country For Old Men (Made me tense - in a good way)
8. Finally cluing into the music of David Kilgour and The Clean.
9. Jazz Icons DVD of John Coltrane Live in Belgium in 1965. Colleen and I couldn't take our eyes off Elvin Jones - absolutely mesmerizing. Coltrane was at his peak - the purest form of spontenious expression I can imagine. Like a Jackson Pollock painting come alive.
10. Lawyer Jed's Christmas sweater.

Keith Waggonner -- Amateurs

There are a couple shows that really stick out when I think about what I saw...

Andrew Bird @ The Orpheum Dec. 7.
By far the most talent that I've seen on one stage this year. It was a total fluke that I went to this show and I was jaw to the floor the entire time. If I owned his new record, it would likely be at the top of my list.

Simon Dawes @ The Echo Feb. 5.
This was during Simon Dawes' Monday Night Residency. The band is incredibly good. I'm surprised that I don't hear more about them. I was in awe of their guitar player’s sweet tone and lazy style. I was so impressed that I went to see them three times that month.

A lot of great albums came out this year, but these were my top five:

Spoon - Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga
Wilco - Sky Blue Sky
Iron & Wine - The Shepherd's Dog
Radiohead - In Rainbows
Blonde - Redhead 23

Kate & Andrew Spitzer - Radars To The Sky

- The Airborne Toxic Event @ Sunset Junction
- Modest Mouse @ Universal Ampitheatre in May (yes, still...)
- Rademacher @ Spaceland in July
- The Henry Clay People @ All-Star Lanes on Halloween
- The Parson Redheads @ Spaceland in November
- The Shins @ KCRW Sounds Eclectic

Dave Woody - Tigers Can Bite You

Favorite show would have to be the Earlimart/Castledoor show at the Santa Monica Women's Rec Center. Unbelievable. Right on the tail of the Earlimart Mentor Tormentor album. That was a double-dose for us rockoholics.

Bobby Tamkin - Xu Xu Fang

- Favorite Show... A Place To Bury Strangers, Xu Xu Fang and Mere Mortals at Silver Lake Lounge
- Favorite Album... Caribou Anndora

Jordan Huddock – Marvelous Toy

Favorite Albums:
- Sunset Rubdown - Random Spirit Lover
- Of Montreal - hissing fauna, are you the destroyer?
- The Deadly Syndrome - The Ortolan
- Castledoor - Follow The Dove
- John Vanderslice - Emerald City

Favorite Shows:
- Regina Spektor @ The Wiltern
- Sunset Rubdown @ El Rey
- The Deadly Syndrome @ The Echo
- The Walkmen @ The Troubadour
- Arcade Fire @ The Greek

Russell Pollard - Everest

My favorite albums were Neil Young - Live at Massey Hall 1971, Wooden Ships, Blonde Redhead - 23., and Iron and Wine - The Shepherd's Dog. All of these records offered up something different and inspired me in some way.

Nicki Nevlin - The Black Kites

A few highlights: Film School at The Echoplex, Radars To The Sky/Henry Clay People/The Hectors at Spaceland, and Jesus And Mary Chain at The Wiltern.

Here's a compilation of our favorite albums (without any order):
-Radiohead - In Rainbows
-Radars To The Sky - Big Bang EP
-Great Northern - Trading Twilight For Daylight
-Tigers Can Bite You - Tigers Can Bite You
-Soulsavers - It's Not How Far You Fall It's How You Land
-A Place To Bury Strangers - A Place To Bury Strangers
-Film School - Hideout
-Unkle - War Stories
-Grinderman - Grinderman
-The Hectors - Sometimes They Collide EP

Aaron Kyle - Le Switch

Fave shows - IN NO REAL ORDER....
Dr. Dog - Troubadour
Division Day - El Rey
The Henry Clay People - The Prospector in Long Beach
Jens Lekman - Troubadour
I Make This Sound - Spaceland
The Broken West - Spaceland Residency

Joel Graves - Everest

Favorite shows:

Vetiver at Jensen Rec Center
Foster Timms at Abuelitas
Chairlift at Silverlake Lounge
Neil Young at Nokia Theater (night 2)
Sonic Youth doing Daydream Nation at the Greek
My Morning Jacket at the Bridge School Benefit

Favorite albums:

The Good, The Bad, and The Queen - The Good, The Bad, and The Queen
Devendra Banhart - Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon
Through The Sparks - Lazarus Beach
Spoon - Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga
Earlimart - Mentor Tormentor
All Smiles - Ten Readings of a Warning
The Aliens - Astronomy for Dogs
Noah Georgeson - Find Shelter
Tom Waits - Orphans: Brawlers, Bawlers, & Bastards
Elliott Smith - New Moon
Richard Swift - Dressed Up For The Let Down

Corinne Dinner - The Hectors

Some standout shows that I attended were: the Division Day residency night at Spaceland with Great Northern. The Mae Shi at Pehrspace. The Happy Hollows residency night at The Echo with Tigers Can Bite You, Western States Motel, and The Transmissions. The final night of I Make This Sound's residency at The Bordello. And that magical summer night at the Greek Theatre where Sonic Youth jousted with their guitars and I drank many large plastic cups of overpriced Corona.

Some of my fav albums were the Tigers Can Bite You album, Light FM's Save The Drama EP, Great Northern's Trading Twilight For Daylight, Foreign Born's On The Wing Now, LCD Soundsystem's Sound of Silver, Menomena's Friend And Foe, The Shins' Wincing the Night Away, and Bat For Lashes' Fur and Gold.

Mike Corwin – The Devils Romantics

Favorite album: AA Bondy ‘American Hearts’
Favorite show: The El Haru Kuroi mariachi sets at All-Star Lanes

Eli and Mary Chartkoff - The Monolators

We weren't sure if you meant shows WE played or shows we WATCHED. So, we'll do both (of course):

Ours: Playing the Eagle Rock Music Festival was a blast. Our video premiere show was wonderful, and we played with Castledoor at the Echo in October and they joined us onstage with members of Flying Tourbillon Orchestra and Summer Darling for a singalong/dance party at the end of the night (fortunately this was preserved on youtube for posterity)...

And we always always always love playing our first-Friday-of-the-month show at Mr. T’s, which is like home to us. Also our show with Rademacher in Fresno was epic.

Other folks': Our side band, The Cobra Lilies, played the Outsider Folk night in Long Beach, curated by Matthew from Mycroft Holmes, back in September, and it was amazing from start to finish: Foot Foot, Ribbons, Casey James and The Staypuft Kid, and Almaden from San Francisco. Watching the Castledoor residencies at the Echo was awe-inspiring; seeing The Airborne Toxic Event play the Detroit Bar was wonderful, as was watching Henry Clay People open for Quasi at the same place. I loved seeing Ema And The Ghosts and Amy Cooper at The Silver Lake Lounge, and Bjork at the Nokia wasn't bad either.

Oh--and Unpoppable at Mr. T's Bowl! World's best balloon bassist.

Some of our favorite albums (and EP's--EP's rule) from 2007 would be We Sold Our Souls (For Nothing) by 8-Bit, Phantom Pains by One Trick Pony (I thought it was called Phantom Pants for a second), Echoes by Correatown, King Giraffe by Parson Redheads, the Bodies Of Water record that everyone loves, Blacklist The Kid With The Red Moustache by The Henry Clay People, Followed By Bad Luck by Tenlons Fort, EP3 by Kissing Cousins, Smiles And Handshakes by The Front, Stunts by Rademacher, and Speak Easy by The Amateurs. I'm pretty sure we're forgetting some of the albums that came out -- we got a little confused as to when some peoples' records actually came out.

Nikolai Goodich – Molecules

Sonic Youth at Little Radio?... Modest Mouse's recent LPs.

Mike Lee – Letting Up Despite Great Faults

Albums/Releases of 2007 (in no particular order):
Boom Bip - Sacchrilege EP
Chromatics - Night Drive
Butcher the Bar - Get Away/Leave This Town 7"
Caribou - Andorra
New Young Pony Club - Fantastic Playroom
M.I.A. - Kala
!!! - Myth Takes
LCD Soundsystem - Sound of Silver
Gui Boratto - Chromophobia
Club 8 - The Boy Who Couldn't Stop Dreaming

Shows of 2007 (in no particular order):
Caribou @ The Troubadour (this was my favorite)
Dean & Britta @ The Getty
DJ Harvey @ all his mysterious spots
Feist @ The Wiltern (Kevin Drew duets w/her for an good)

Brian Canning – The Afternoons & Irving

Daniel Johnston played the fonda and I cried... First show that I have ever openly weeped at.

Artel had a performance at the American Russian Theatre Ensemble Laboratory and this was definitely the most inspiring show I have seen all year.

Lavender Diamond's Imagine Our Love was my favorite album.

Chris Richard, Jesse Hoy, & Will Etling – The Deadly Syndrome

Will: Favorite shows was definitely Handsome Furs with Johnny and the Moon at the Echo, and Spleen United at the Silver Lake Lounge. Spleen United is a Danish band with tons of synths, and they go nuts, and it's awesome.

Jesse: Joanna Newsom at Walt Disney concert hall, didn't have the best seats but it didn't matter, it sounded better than the record, she was amazing, her band was brilliant, the energy was pouring out of the songs, and yeah, I really can't say enough. Best show I've ever been to, ever.

Claire McKeown – Dirt Bird & The Afternoons

The best shows I saw this last year were performed by: Benji Hughes (at Tangier), The Movies (any where any time), Eskimohunter (right before their Spaceland residency at El Cid), Castledoor (during their Echo residency), Jesse Deluxe (at Bordello), Fancy Space people (at the Cog), Lily Marlene (at Bordello) and Amnion (at Tangier). There was something magical about these particular performances that stuck with me. I watch a lot of shows with my line of work, and see lots of monkey business. Each of these artists gave it all, and I noticed.

Hunter Curra, Daniel Hermon, Aaron Le Fontaine, and Jenna Degayo – The Flying Tourbillon Orchestra

Hunter C: Weird answer.. but I honestly think I might've missed the two best shows this year. If had not been out of town I'm pretty sure the 1yr anniversary night at Let's Independent would have been in my top; or one of the Earlimart CD release shows that I also missed. Summer Camp was amazing too. Albums this year? Oh.. I'm so Behind on NEW stuff. It's tough to attempt writing with classic pop influences while listening to modern rock heavily. I do have a glovebox full of local CD-R's though.. love me some Monolators, Radars, Divisadero, MiniLove, Henry Clay, so many.. and ONLY in that order. jk.

Adam S: There has been so many great local shows this year! I had such a great time seeing and playing with Castledoor at The Echo during their residency. They are so much fun! Their energy blows me away. As far as albums go, I've been constantly listening to Le Switch's Hello, Today since the summer and just got the new Radars to the Sky's The Big Bang EP which is phenomenal.

Rob Danson – Death To Anders

Favorite shows - The Happy Hollows Residency, Sonic Youth playing Daydream Nation, Wilco at the Greek Theatre.

Favorite Albums - Blonde Redhead - 23, The Bird and the Bee, Rademacher - Stunts, Blitzen Trapper - Wild Mountain Nation, Deerhoof - Friend Opportunity

Mike Griffin – Tandemoro

As a spectator, my favorite show of 2007 was probably Dan Deacon at the Echoplex. He opened for Girl Talk, but I think a lot of us were there to see Dan Deacon. He came out and immediately ducked down to his little lair in the floor and the only thing to see on the stage was a glowing green skull. He started going through his crazy dance songs and people were digging the crap out of it. During certain breakdowns, there were no lights at all except for the glow skull which was now a flashing glow skull.

At one point, Dan tried to get everyone in the middle of the crowd to form a hand tunnel and everyone else would take turns running through it and then form the end of the tunnel as we went through. It was a bit confusing, but it started to work! but then a guy in a wheelchair tried to roll through the hand tunnel and absurdity ensued. It was fun while it lasted though.

The best part about that show was being next to my friends who were all as apeshit for Dan Deacon as I am and we just pumped our fists and shouted for a good hour....I didn't even stay for Girl Talk. Dan Deacon should open for no man.

Erica Elektra – Hearts Of Palm UK

Art in Manila - Se the Woods on Fire
Rogue Wave - Asleep at Heaven's Gate
Blonde Redhead - 23
Stars - In Our Bedroom After The War
Daft Punk - Alive 2007

Oh yeah, I also love The Postmarks' self-titled album....

Heisenflei & M – The Pity Party

Fave shows- The Happy Hollows, Midnight Movies, & The Silversun Pickups at The Wiltern, The Pity Party (!) and The Little Ones at the Hammer Museum, and Autolux at UCLA.

Fave Albums: MIA - Kala, Radiohead - In Rainbows, and Nine Inch Nails - Year
Zero. (We're not very indie I guess...)

- RFSL Favorite CDs Of 2007
- RFSL Favorite Live Shows of 2007


Blogger Claire said...

slight correction. In my favorite shows of 2007 its jessie evans not jessie deluxe. Silly me...She is playing here again soon so don't miss her.

3:46 AM  

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