Iggy Pop

Photo by Breanne Bowland

I used to go to a lot of shows. I spent most of my twenties in Chicago, which, oh man, the music scene. Ten bucks could get you a Huber Bock and what felt like constant access to [The] Gossip. Gingerman, Elbo Room, Delilah’s, the Metro, Empty Bottle, the Vic, and countless little dank bars.

I’m older and more tired now, but that isn’t why I almost never go to shows. On about a 1:1 ratio, for every show I attended in Chicago, there was one I called off at the last minute, one I spent huddled in a corner, one I missed most of because I “stepped out for air” and never went back in. A couple years ago, I stopped fighting the fact that I rarely, if ever, feel safe at shows. I had to start saying it in words when I started dating my husband, who goes to an average of two shows a week, and who can predict with almost 100% accuracy which bands I will like. I’d watch him bop easily around a room hugging friends, and realize we’d never have a relationship if I kept trying to go to shows and standing stiffly in the least crowded part of the space with my arms locked around my chest until enough time had passed that I felt justified shouting “I’M READY TO GO NOW” in his ear. [read the whole post]

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It’s the week between Pride Weekend and the Fourth of July Weekend. A chance to catch your breath.

Speaking of catching things, let’s talk about what you can catch in this week’s shows. What we’ve got coming up this week in the Bay Area includes: ogres, lifers, (sc)avengers, The Dude and The Iguana.

So, we’re going to do the preview now. Doing the preview now. Preview is go and now we go do the preview now. Previewwww.

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2017 seems to be the year of the music festival.  With new festivals like Desert Daze and Burger Boogaloo gaining traction, the stalwarts have upped the ante on their lineups, boasting unique and eclectic selections of damn fine music. FYF Fest has come a long way from its meager Echo Park beginnings and from July 21st to 23rd it will once again take over Exposition Park in Los Angeles this year and damn if they haven’t booked one hell of a lineup.

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“As long as we’re alive then Punk’s not dead yet!”

Punk Rock is probably some of the most honest music anyone will ever hear. Stripped away are the pretenses of “professional musicianship” leaving in its wake the raw emotion, power, and intellect—or lack thereof—of the music. It can be anything, it can be nothing, it can be everything. Somehow it has endured over the years in many different waves and forms, but to quote The Exploited, “Punk’s not dead!”  It is now 19 years since the Stern Brothers began taking over downtown Las Vegas and it looks like it isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Thank goodness for that!

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Punk’s Not Dead Yet!

If you grew up in local punk rock scenes, it is impossible to not have heard about Punk Rock Bowling. The three-day festival has been bringing together a menagerie of fantastic punk bands in downtown Las Vegas for 19 years strong – that’s over half my lifetime – and this year’s line-up may be one of the best to date.

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All photos by Oliver Brink

All photos by Oliver Brink

The Stooges were one of the greatest American rock bands of all time. That core team of Iggy Pop along with the Asheton Brothers created a brand new sound that was so thick, dirty and ferocious, it made even the heaviest bands of the 60s sound like Peter Paul and Mary. As a young punk, I devoured the three records they put out in the 60s. Those records are perfection. However, that also meant that I avoided any and all of Pop’s solo material. Sure, if people were dancing to “Lust For Life”, I’d join in, but the little solo material I came across otherwise — “Candy”, “Real Wild Child” — all sounded like over produced parodies of that animalistic beast that was The Stooges.

Fast forward to 2016. I learn that Pop is releasing a so-called “farewell” album. He enlisted Josh Homme, the “too handsome for his own good” mastermind behind Queens of the Stone Age, to produce the album. He then drafted Homme, along with other members of QOTSA and the Arctic Monkeys, as his backing band. With the majority of the Stooges having passed away, I thought that these guys were capable of emulating that sound. I had high hopes for a back to basics, thick and dirty rock record and tour.

I was wrong, but I was wrong in the best way possible.

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