fillmore

Old 97’s: Ken Bethea, Rhett Miller, Murry Hammond. Not pictured: Drummer Philip Peeples. Photo by Mark Couvillion, used under Creative Commons.

Old 97’s: Ken Bethea, Rhett Miller, Murry Hammond. Not pictured: Drummer Philip Peeples. Photo by Mark Couvillion, used under Creative Commons.

The Old 97’s are an alternative country band hailing from Austin; they have been playing twangy rock and roll for the past 24 years. Their songs are three minutes of catchy hooks, marrying country twang with a dash of punk. Their wry cynicism doesn’t mope or lecture – it bursts with joyful irreverence in songs about angst, or love, or angsty love, or drinking, or drinking and sex. Their love songs are what keep me coming back to them: well crafted little songs about the messy complications of being so entwined with another person. [read the whole post]

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A thunderstruck, brilliant display of chaotic camaraderie, with a stunning surprise for the end of the performance

Jehnny Beth of Savages

Jehnny Beth of Savages

Every year during Fauxchella, there is always The One Show To Rule Them All. Often times, it’s a wildly infamous, recently-reformed act playing a tiny venue; other times, it’s a great swath of bands all playing one massive evening; occasionally, however, the headlining act is simply one of the most talked-about acts on the live circuit, and as luck would have it, they have that night all to themselves, and are poised to deliver a heart-stopping, utterly thrilling set to all of the lucky fans that managed to snatch up tickets to their gig. Many Bay Area concertgoers will be likely to rant and rave about all of the indietronic acts that dominated the earlier part of the week and weekend prior as the Shows To See, but this year, that honor went to the London quartet known as Savages, who took over the stage at the Fillmore and delivered one of the most ferocious and stunningly energetic performances of 2016 — in less than two hours’ time.

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Eric Hutchinson brings Pure Fiction to the Fillmore

Eric Hutchinson brings Pure Fiction to the Fillmore

You can’t believe a word Eric Hutchinson says. Don’t believe me? See for yourself: his new album even admits it’s all Pure Fiction. Tall tales or no, I wanted to hear just what Mr. Hutchinson’s been up to since I saw him last, so I rounded up a couple girlfriends last night and headed out to the Fillmore to give him a listen. Shortly after we arrived, the “Tell the World Tour” support act Saints of Valory took the stage to kick the evening off. [read the whole post]

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At this time last year, I had no idea who Haim were. They barely a blip on my radar, as they were simply an LA band, and there are dozens of those. It wasn’t until Summer when I finally “Falling,” and was blown away. And, like the rest of the world, when I heard Days Are Gone for the first time, I thought to myself, “Wow. This is amazing!” I never thought a record of soft rock could be so impressive. Of course, they weren’t going to be kept secret. They managed to sell out two nights at The Fillmore in less time than it took me to learn the proper pronunciation of their name. (Rhymes with time)

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All Photos by Michelle Viray

Oh great music philosophers, Sorockcrates and Rufus (yes dudes, I went there), I beseech thee.  Is there ever a good answer to the following question? Do you want your favorite artists to evolve or stay the same?

Unless you move to a desert island accompanied by your top ten albums of all time, there probably is no good answer.  But like anything, we must realize, no matter how much you want your adorable puppy to stay that adorable puppy, it’s going to grow up.  Being “excellent to each other” requires room for growth.  Without growth, the chance for something even greater might as well be stuck in a phone booth stuck traveling through time.  So unless you’re one of those people who go to great lengths to breed puppy versions of dogs (I’m looking at you desert island folk), I implore you to keep an open mind.

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Stuck in a Cults-like Trance

Give me the big show. When it comes to a live musical performance, I always want the big show. The greeting. The city salutation. The witty banter. Comments on the venue. The running dialogue. The background on what the song is about. The “we were in L.A. last night and the crowd here tonight is definitely louder than last night” bit. The impromptu jump into the crowd OR the planned jump on to stage-set speakers. The call and response. The encouragement also known as “feel free to sing this song with us if you know the words!” I call it: the big show.

Now, the big show doesn’t have to be all those things. The big show can be subtle, humble, and true to the band. It should serve as a way for the audience to connect to the music through the performers. The big show doesn’t always have to include fancy pyrotechnics or multiple confetti guns, lest you think I bring a Flaming Lips-only / Wayne Coyne-and-thousands of red balloons-on Halloween bias to the table. What I always like about a live performance is the fact that it’s unique. There is something to be said for raw talent but I also believe there is something to be said for engaging a crowd when it comes to a live performance. I believe the big show should match the band and should get the audience closer to the music and to the performers.
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Show Review: Best Coast with Bleached at The Fillmore, 8/16/13

August 19, 2013

San Francisco has been feuding with Los Angeles for as long as both cities have been in existence. San Franciscans are pretty much disgusted by everything LA has to offer. Somehow, Best Coast have managed to survive that hatred. In fact, Best Coast are huge in the city by the bay. How did they do […]

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Show Review: Petty Fest at the Fillmore, 02/27/2013

March 1, 2013

If you’ve never experienced The Cabin Down Below Band, you quite literally don’t know what you’re missing. My advice? Remedy this error as soon as is possible! This week I got my chance to do just that with a night to remember: Petty Fest’s first ever stop in San Francisco! The evening was hosted by […]

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Show Review: Two Gallants with Akron/Family and Future Twin at The Fillmore, 2/2/2013

February 6, 2013

The formula of reverb-drenched-rock, guitar-drum-vocal, two-man band has proven itself, time and again, to be a successful combination. Acts like the Black Keys and the White Stripes proved that it could be done, and tore their way up the charts while they did so. It is, nevertheless, challenging, blending a careful balance of lo-fi and […]

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Show Review: Marina & The Diamonds with MS MR at The Fillmore, 7/11/12

July 16, 2012

Marina & The Diamonds were supposed to play The Fillmore a year and a half ago. She canceled the show in order to record her new record. I had purchased tickets, and I will admit to being a little bummed about this at the time. But, alas, I let it go. The wait seemed to […]

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