Cafe Du Nord

June 6, 1944.

June 6, 1944.

Do you know what today is? Today is D-Day. Freedom isn’t to be for granted, especially these days.

Speaking of freedom, let’s talk about concerts. Here’s what we’ve got coming up this week in the Bay Area: tall people, people benefiting other people, and people doing things with the air.

So, let’s preview. Time to preview. It’s time to preview now, and now here are the previews.

Let’s preview now. Preview start. Time to preview the coming week and the time to preview is now. Let’s do it! Preview!

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Stephen Kellogg: simply adorable.

Stephen Kellogg: simply adorable.

Stephen Kellogg is a friend of a friend (or several friends, actually). Even so, I’ve never met him, and though I’ve seen him once or twice, I couldn’t have named a single of his songs… until last night. His newest album, Blunderstone Rookery, came out this summer, and when I heard he was playing Cafe du Nord on a chilly Wednesday night, I couldn’t think of anything else I needed to do. It was about time I finally laid ears on him, and a bonus, too: opening act Fort Atlantic.  It wasn’t hard to find a girlfriend up for some live tunes, and soon we were settled into the dim venue with a plate of their fantastic fried pickles, ready for the night to get rolling. [read the whole post]

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Watch the people get tricked out of time

Watch the people get tricked out of time

If you were fortunate enough to catch the last two waves of touring put upon by Puscifer, the brainchild of one Maynard James Keenan of Tool fame,  you might have caught a glimpse of a sultry and furious siren known as Carina Round, who opened for the art-collective-cum-musical-explosion on every single one of their dates. In addition to kicking off the show and stunning audiences who were unprepared for an opening act that held her own ground and shook the foundations of the theaters she co-occupied, the Wolverhampton, UK-born Carina also lent her rich and sensuous voice to the backup vocal duties of the main act — sometimes taking center stage to lead the musicians around her, while frontman Keenan practiced his customary hiding in the shadows. What you might have missed, however, was the release of Tigermending, her self-produced third record. Nearly half a decade in the making, with guest appearances from musicians as varied as Brian Eno, Billy Corgan, and Dave Stewart, the album is a dense and thunderous exploration of worlds unknown and lingering, decadent thoughts and messages. To express all of the fury and power of this release in a live setting is a daunting task, but tonight at Café du Nord, Carina proved that she was more than up for it.

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All Photos By Carla Deasy

Maybe it’s just me, maybe I’m just getting old, but maybe it’s everyone else who might have thought 9:30pm was too late to start a show, well on a Wednesday anyway.  You’d think someone who has become a critical darling in Sweden, would have had people coming in by the truckload.  Upon arrival, at best the place was maybe half full?  But the education system in Sweden is much better than ours, so my gut is telling me to go with two-fifths full as my official number.  After all accuracy in measurement is the key to successful construction of IKEA furniture.

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A little over two years ago, some friends and I went to see Tony Lucca at the Hotel Utah. He was playing with two dudes we’d never heard of before: Jay Nash and Matt Duke. Matt opened, and before he’d finished the first song all three of us were staring at him, transfixed (and okay, maybe a little surprised as well). Our reactions to Jay were similar, and of course we already knew we loved Tony’s music too. As the tour progressed, it didn’t take them long to realize that their fantastic chemistry shouldn’t go to waste. By the time they reached SPACE in Chicago, they were harmonizing their way through each other’s set lists, two of them flanking the third songwriter as he took center stage. They decided to record a 4-song EP, and somehow the whole project was dubbed “TFDI.” (More on that later.)

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The last time I saw Jay Nash live was August of 2009. Truth be told, I was there to see Tony Lucca, and I’d never heard of Jay Nash (or Matt Duke) before! Fast forward to going on two years later, and I’m hooked on this guy’s voice. Since then, the trio has formed the occasional band TFDI, released an EP, and as yet evaded the Bay Area (as a band, anyway). So as you might imagine, I wasn’t going to let a little rain stop me from getting to the Cafe du Nord to see Jay on Sunday night, even if he was without his cohorts! Lucky for me, opening act Milk Carton Kids helped to fill any imaginary void. [read the whole post]

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Noise Pop Show Review: Film School with Apex Manor and Gregory & the Hawk at Cafe Du Nord, 2/24/11

February 28, 2011
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It’s certainly nice when one is soaking wet from the heavy downpour outdoors to go underground in a warm and friendly place such as Cafe du Nord and find a cute-as-a-button folk singer crooning softly, trading an acoustic guitar with a harp (!) for good effect. It helps warm cold limbs anyhow. This was my […]

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Noise Pop Show Review: Versus with Telekinesis, The Love Language and The Burnt Ones at Cafe Du Nord, 2/23/2011

February 24, 2011

Last night was freezing, and the hot toddies at Café du Nord hit the sweet spot.  The waft of warm whiskey, lemon and clove set a tone for the evening filled with intoxicating songs, indie style.

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Show Review: Tony Lucca with Joey Ryan at Cafe Du Nord, 2/8/2011

February 9, 2011

Of all of the LA-based singer-songwriters I enjoy seeing live, Tony Lucca is perhaps my favorite.  While his peers seem content to bask in the sun, studio, or local LA venues, Tony faithfully treks up to the Bay to play for his “neighbors” on a regular basis.  Furthermore, his show is sure to be a […]

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Show Review: The Chapin Sisters at Café Du Nord, 9/15/10

September 16, 2010

Sister acts: they’re not just girl-group nuns on the run from the mob anymore. As far as I know, at least. I can’t personally vouch for The Chapin Sisters’ lack of involvement with organized crime. But I can vouch for the utter gorgeousness of their performance at Café Du Nord last night, so I certainly […]

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