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Music, All Shook Down Saturday: Beirut Brings Its Old-World Grace to the Fox

Saturday: Beirut Brings Its Old-World Grace to the Fox

Beirut Laetitia Sadier Oct. 1, 2011 Fox Theater Better than: An all-inclusive Eastern European vacation (not really) Supporting its critically acclaimed third album, Beirut took its Eastern European-influenced pop to downtown Oakland's Fox Theater on Saturday. Beirut is perfectly…
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Music, All Shook Down

Top Six Movie Parodies in Music Videos (Thanks, Foo Fighters)

Remember the quietly xenophobic, right-wing propaganda movie that was Falling Down? The one where Michael Douglas has a meltdown in Los Angeles and goes on a minirampage against mostly immigrants in his white shirt and horn-rimmed specs? The movie…
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Music, Reviewed Maus Haus

Maus Haus

Traces of Stereolab linger in the bleary vintage synths and breathy vocal harmonies that open Maus Haus' "Rigid Breakfast," the first track on the group's debut full-length, Lark Marvels. But the San Francisco six-piece is too restless to stay in…
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Music, Slumberland Records: Trapped in Amber

Slumberland Records: Trapped in Amber

Slumberland Records' sole honcho, Mike Schulman, has hardly slept for days. But you'd never guess from the animated way he talks. We're hanging out at the cozy Pub in Albany, and his rapid cadence doesn't come from anything superficial, not…
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Music, Hear This Chemical 'Lab

Chemical 'Lab

Stereolab's music begs to be decoded. The production is so layered and crisp that the instruments never nettle one another, while the band's pop aesthetic genuflects before a vast array of styles, formulas, and genres. Pick apart one of Stereolab's…
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Music, Reviewed Stereolab


In the '90s, Stereolab albums were charming junkshops selling rock history's neglected treasures, mainly '60s French pop and '70s Krautrock. This decade, on one chirpy release after another, the London-based group's extreme stylistic conservatism has been laid bare, its retro-rock…
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Music, All Shook Down Stereolab Makes SF Tour Stop in Oct.

Stereolab Makes SF Tour Stop in Oct.

If you love the sounds of a Moog synthesizer, then I'll venture a guess and say you're a Stereolab fan. If I'm right, then you should jump for joy when the electro rockers take up a two-night residency at…
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Music, Reviewed Brunettes


On Brunettes' third proper album in nine years (albeit their first U.S. release), this libidinous New Zealand duo continues to shake its garage-pop roots while retaining a sense of sauced sarcasm. Hence the playful intro, "Brunettes Against Bubblegum Youth," that…
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Music, Hear This Off your Gourd and into the StereoLab: A little bit country and a little bit rock 'n' electro

Off your Gourd and into the StereoLab: A little bit country and a little bit rock 'n' electro

It's been barely three years since Stereolab co-singer/guitarist Mary Hansen was struck and killed while riding her bicycle in London (a tragedy that was audible in singer Laetitia Sadier's gorgeous voice on the band's last album, Margerine Eclipse). But the…
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Music, Reviewed Numbers


Several years back, American soil sprouted hundreds of indie groups reviving the angular, disco-punk sound of the early '80s. During their 15 seconds of fame, groups like the Rapture and the Gossip regurgitated a handful of 20-year-old dance grooves for…
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Music, Reviewed Deerhoof


This isn't the first time Deerhoof has mashed together lysergic Byrds guitars, space rock, free noise, and twee asides -- but on The Runners Four, this Bay Area mainstay has ditched the erratic, "blank stare" edge of its previous albums…
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Music, Reviewed The Free Design

The Free Design

Beloved by Stereolab and the High Llamas (whose Sean O'Hagan wrote Born Again's liner notes), the Free Design was an NYC group in the late '60s/ early '70s celebrated for its exquisitely arranged male/ female harmonies and unabashedly cheerful songs.…
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Music, Hear This Hear This

Hear This

Stereolab is that rare band that transcends genre boundaries. The group has remained an influence on all sorts of cutting-edge music, from lounge and rock to experimental electronic and hip hop, and for the past seven years it's also retained…
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Music, Reviewed Citizens Here and Abroad

Citizens Here and Abroad

The ghastly, alarmlike guitar pattern that opens "The Voices," the first song on San Francisco quartet Citizens Here and Abroad's Ghosts of Tables and Chairs, is a good indication of the urgency that characterizes the record's 10 songs. It's an…
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Music, Reviewed Amy Rigby

Amy Rigby

Way back when, some famous Brit rock singer rasped out a line about shuffling off this mortal coil before getting too long in the tooth -- of course, when he finally got old, he'd softened his stance somewhat. Rock 'n'…
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Calendar, Night&Day Chaos Theory

Chaos Theory

Impatient fans of Sonic Youth or Stereolab who have long awaited successors to such indie experimentation can finally put their worries to rest. KaitO's music grafts itself onto such dissonant forebears while giving pop a futuristic makeover. In dense four-minute…
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Music, Electro Group

Electro Group

When you begin to listen to Electro Group's debut album, A New Pacifica, you know right away that you've got some serious noise to reckon with. The Sacramento trio combines the heady guitar drones and electronic sounds of Stereolab with…
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Music, Ladytron


The English band Ladytron calls itself "retro futurist," an oxymoron meant to indicate backward-looking forward thought. It may sound confusing but it works. From the opening instrumental track "Mu-Tron" to the final, droning-yet-melodic number "Skools Out...," the group evokes real…
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Music, Record


Suba São Paulo Confessions (Six Degrees) Local genre-blurring label Six Degrees poses an unlikely question with its latest release: What kind of music would a Yugoslavian-bred musician and composer trained in jazz and classical make if he moved to…
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Music, Riff Raff Riff Raff

Riff Raff

Pop (Do We Not Like That?) You're forgiven if you thought that Berkeley's Slumberland Records went out of business a few years ago. You're even forgiven if you've never heard of Slumberland in the first place. But quietly -- of…
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