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Music, Hear This Vic Chesnutt

Vic Chesnutt

Vic Chesnutt's sense of self is as unsteady as a drunk on Sunday morning. In his songs, the Southern singer-songwriter veers rambunctiously from searing declarations ("I am not a victim ... I'm an atheist!") to dismal self-reflection ("I'm a cheap,…
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Music, Tiny Vipers' uneasy listening

Tiny Vipers' uneasy listening

Jesy Fortino is a shy musician. She prefers to sit quietly in a corner rather than take command of a room. This quickly became an issue in her early live performances, when Fortino — who records as Tiny Vipers —…
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Music, Sir Richard Bishop captures the Middle East via Oakland

Sir Richard Bishop captures the Middle East via Oakland

Since 2004, Sir Richard Bishop has treated his albums like international buffet tables of sound, piling a little bit of everything on his platters. His solo work (2004's Improvika, 2006's While My Guitar Violently Bleeds, 2007's Polytheistic Fragments) takes more…
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Music, Reviewed Serge Gainsbourg

Serge Gainsbourg

Even with no knowledge of the French language, it'd still be fairly obvious that Serge Gainsbourg's 1971 album was consumed with lust. The pelvic-thrust basslines, his ear-licking vocals, and the way Jane Birkin exhaled as if being penetrated made Histoire…
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Music, Hear This "Cocaine" Dealer

"Cocaine" Dealer

Few American musicians embody "laid-back" as well as JJ Cale does. The Oklahoma-born guitarist seems incapable of playing at speeds more rushed than his signature loping shuffle-boogie. He sings in a dry whisper while licks roll lazily off his fretboard.…
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Music, <i>Beware</i> of the real Will Oldham

Beware of the real Will Oldham

Will Oldham masks his feelings with a thick beard, a devilish grin, and a stage persona known as Bonnie "Prince" Billy. The 38-year-old songwriter makes no apologies about the fact that Bonnie is an act, a vehicle for his music…
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Music, Reviewed Phosphorescent

Phosphorescent

In 1975, Willie Nelson recorded a series of covers called To Lefty from Willie as a tribute to his musical hero, Lefty Frizzell. Despite Nelson's efforts, Frizzell remains one of the more underappreciated country musicians, but Nelson's intent was essentially…
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Music, Reviewed Death

Death

In the early '70s, three African-American blood brothers from Detroit formed an R&B band. But on witnessing the Stooges live, they abruptly fused their soul sides with punk bombast. They called themselves Death, and were all prepped to sign with…
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Music, Hear This Saadiq Soul

Saadiq Soul

Raphael Saadiq proves that the sounds of '60s Philly, Detroit, and Memphis can still be mined for fresh inspiration. His last album, The Way I See It, offered 13 tracks of unabashedly retro soul. Like Nicole Willis & the Soul…
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Music, Hear This Howl at the Moondoggies

Howl at the Moondoggies

Seattle's Moondoggies have been wooing crowds with their country-rock musings for more than a year now. Picked up by Hardly Art, the band just released its debut Don't Be a Stranger, which offers traces of Little Feat, Linda Ronstadt's Heart…
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Music, Reviewed Neil Young, <i>Chrome Dreams II</i>

Neil Young, Chrome Dreams II

The real Chrome Dreams is a legend in Neil Young mythology. He'd intended it as an album of original works, but scrapped the project in the late '70s, choosing instead to sprinkle those songs onto various records. The recently released…
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  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"

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