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Toph One 

Music, Listen Up Making a Buzz

Making a Buzz

I swear sometimes it feels like my head will fall off, what with all these cockamamie subgenres of music. Thankfully, we have DJ MikeBee to help us sort it all out. As a regular on Andrew Jervis and Tomas Palermo's…
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Music, Hear This The Devil and Doctor Octagon: Kool Keith returns

The Devil and Doctor Octagon: Kool Keith returns

From his 1988 landmark album Critical Beatdown with Ultramagnetic MCs to the groundbreaking collaboration with S.F. producer Dan the Automator as Dr. Octagon, the rapper Kool Keith has covered new, strange ground at almost every turn. He is known for…
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Calendar, Night&Day Parade Grounds

Parade Grounds

San Franciscans turn ordinary events into grand spectacles. Every May, up to 100,000 costumed (and possibly drunk) runners race across town, and each month hundreds of bicyclists take over the city streets — and then there's the annual convergence of…
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Music, Reviewed Cheb i Sabbah

Cheb i Sabbah

While Algeria-born, San Francisco–based DJ and producer Cheb i Sabbah is known far and wide for his ecstatic "1002 Nights" events featuring live musicians, vocalists, and dancing, his latest release takes a decidedly more mystical turn. Devotion offers versions of…
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Music, Reviewed Top'R

Top'R

San Francisco rapper Top'R has spent the last 15 years rocking walls with the Lords graffiti crew and stages with the Earthlings and Gurp City collectives. Along the way, he's released a half-dozen albums and toured incessantly, amassing a loyal…
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Music, Hear This Underwater sirens stir local act Kitka to song

Underwater sirens stir local act Kitka to song

In Slavic folklore, rusalki are mythological female creatures of the sea who, after suffering untimely deaths as humans, become ghosts whose mesmerizing songs lead unsuspecting men to their demise. The San Francisco–based group Kitka traveled to Ukraine to learn about…
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Music, Hear This The Melvins melt your noggin this New Year's Eve

The Melvins melt your noggin this New Year's Eve

On first hearing Ledisi's major-label debut, Lost and Found, you might think that the New Orleans–born, Oakland-raised jazz and R&B singer is attempting to make more radio-friendly material. But a closer listen shows the vocals surrounded by complex arrangements, and…
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Music, Hear This Punk Royalty Still Reigns Supreme: Naked Raygun and Suicidal Tendencies

Punk Royalty Still Reigns Supreme: Naked Raygun and Suicidal Tendencies

One day in 1970, Japanese singer Kenji "Damo" Suzuki was heard busking on a Munich street by members of innovative German rockers Can. That very night, Suzuki became Can's new frontman, his eerily elastic, voice-as-instrument approach dovetailing with the band's…
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Music, Reviewed The Shotgun Wedding Quintet

The Shotgun Wedding Quintet

The Shotgun Wedding Quintet is an engaging jazz and hip-hop group in the same Bay Area tradition that birthed the likes of Alphabet Soup and the Broun Fellinis. On the band's debut disc, MC Dublin spits tales from the mind…
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Calendar, Night&Day Hopa!

Hopa!

It's easy to forget yesterday's tragedies, as so many new ones quickly take their place. But the organizers of Kafana Balkan hope you won't forget the thousands of refugees and orphans from the 1999 Kosovo war and renewed ethnic tensions…
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Music, Reviewed Clipd Beaks, <i>Hoarse Lords</i>

Clipd Beaks, Hoarse Lords

The members of Clipd Beaks grew up playing in prog-rock, art-core, and jam-type bands in their native Minneapolis. Bassist Scott Ecklein and drummer Ray Benjamin have known each other since grade school; guitarist and synth player Greg Pritchard joined the…
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Music, Hear This Hear This

Hear This

On its 2005 debut for Jagjaguwar, Canadian collective Black Mountain brewed up an intoxicating batch of homegrown rock. Stephen McBean's soulful voice and hypnotic song-visions create a contemporary version of classic rock, rich in texture and never ironic. The band…
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Music, BeatBox Q-Tip and Trentemoller

Q-Tip and Trentemoller

Call off the genre holy wars — Anders Trentemøller preaches an electronic gospel that even the far-flung tribes of Technopolis can agree upon. The Danish producer's albums (like the haunting Last Resort) flow between misty ambience and dusky dub melancholia,…
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Music, Hear This Finntroll; Download Festival; Bill Callahan; Black Crowes; the Go-Gos

Finntroll; Download Festival; Bill Callahan; Black Crowes; the Go-Gos

In the forsaken hinterlands of Finland roams a band of evil trolls who sing in Swedish (one of the country's two national languages), and consume copious amounts of beer. Forging an unusual merger of grandiose black metal and bouncy, local…
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Music, Reviewed Balkan Beat Box

Balkan Beat Box

Imagine the frantic live drumming of Crash Worship mixed with the chorus girls from a Russian circus, throw in some wailing Eastern European horns, and you've got the tip of the Balkan Beat Box iceberg. The group also liberally sprinkles…
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Music, Reviewed Chemical Brothers

Chemical Brothers

On their sixth album of new material, the Chemical Brothers aren't breaking much new ground. But if you've been a fan of their big, floor-filling anthems from records past, you'll find plenty of blinking sound effects and booming drums here.…
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Music, Bizarre World Harmony

Bizarre World Harmony

As a Croatian-American electro-funk DJ with a powerful thirst for liquor and trouble, I knew I'd like Gogol Bordello from the moment I heard about the group. The act's pulsing Mediterranean sound and sljivovica-drenched stage presence have found eager listeners…
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Music, Sibling Mastery

Sibling Mastery

Since their inception a mere four years ago, the Bay Area-based Rondo Brothers have gone from unknown bedroom producers to a pair of go-to industry veterans. These days they busily tour the globe, working with the likes of Dan the…
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Music, Reviewed Bravez Team Hyphy

Bravez Team Hyphy

It's hard to look at the cover of BTH's debut and not think that these kids are just some bubblegum grommets. The Bay Area group sports the grills and chains, the boy-group baby faces, the chrome rims, and, of course,…
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Music, Reviewed Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, Ray Price

Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, Ray Price

Country music gets a bad rap from all the commercial bullshit that clogs the airwaves, but if you want to hear the real deal, it doesn't get any more pedigreed than Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, and Ray Price. The collective…
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