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Music, Fruits of Hard Labor

Fruits of Hard Labor

On a scorching Saturday in mid-October, numerous artists, community members, and curious onlookers gather at Sixth and Mission streets for the third annual SOMA Fest. What begins as a public forum for performance soon feels more like a cookout, as…
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Music, Sweet Musette

Sweet Musette

When she was a young girl in Paris in the '60s, Odile Lavault was not particularly aware of the seismic upheavals in French popular music happening around her. Her family was conservative, Catholic, and not at all open to American…
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Music, Daft Punk

Daft Punk

"Who rocks the party?/ We rock the party/ And everybody rocks at the Gold Chains party," screams a squinting Gold Chains from the center of a recent pre-Halloween bash. The crowd around him grows frenzied, booty-shaking and floor-quaking as hard…
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Music, Trembling Blue Stars

Trembling Blue Stars

Consistency, we are told, is a good thing. Just keep that nose to the grindstone, that pedal to the metal, that eye on the prize, and you'll get what you deserve (as well as a dictionary of clichés). No one…
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Music, Club 8

Club 8

In 1996, when Club 8 released its first album, Nouvelle, various zines and indie music mags described the Swedish duo's sound as "Astrud Gilberto gone indie-pop." While the group's music did indeed bear a resemblance to Gilberto's atmospheric bossa nova,…
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Music, Moving in Stereo

Moving in Stereo

There's a song on the new Stereo Total album, Musique Automatique, that perfectly captures the band's worldview. On "Für Immer 16" ("Forever 16"), Brezel Göring whips off raunchy guitar riffs and fizzy keyboard parts, as Françoise Cactus coyly sings, "I…
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Music, A Foggy Notion

A Foggy Notion

Dan Prothero lives in the Lower Haight, produces dance music for his own label, and DJs around town occasionally. But you won't find any sequencers, drum machines, or synthesizers littering his home studio or the houses of the musicians he…
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Music, Spiritualized


The difference between your average ode to amore and a Spiritualized love song is the distinction between a quietly affectionate couple and a couple that's always getting it on in the stairwell, fighting in the elevator, and making up (and…
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Music, James William Hindle

James William Hindle

James William Hindle is a sentimental man. You can hear him pouring his heart all over his self-titled debut, a locally recorded eight-song packet of hope and acoustic yearning released on the Badman label. The London-based singer's unabashed emotionalism puts…
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Music, Appetite for Resurrection

Appetite for Resurrection

Over the years, certain singers have unleashed screams that could scrape the filth off city sidewalks. In the recent past, Nirvana's Kurt Cobain, Gits frontwoman Mia Zapata, and Babes in Toyland's Kat Bjelland all lit their respective bands' fuses with…
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Music, The Goblins

The Goblins

Just in time for Halloween comes Missing Fits, the third full-length CD from masked Chicago punk rock funnymen the Goblins. But is the album a trick or a treat? Actually, it's a bit of both. Following a hearseload of Goblins…
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Music, Mushroom


Psychedelia, wherefore art thou? Between rave genericism, jam-band burnout, and cretinous items like Afroman's current hit "Because I Got High," high-flying music has taken a beating in recent years. Hedonistic tunes that go beyond mere druggy musings have become bong-watered…
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Music, Father Figure

Father Figure

While shopping at an import store in Montclair, DJ Moda (né Eric Reynolds) stops to listen to the Eastern electronica playing in the background. "I just love tablas," he coos. By watching Moda beeline toward the sole rack of CDs…
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Music, Robbie Basho

Robbie Basho

In the history of solo guitar pioneers, the late Robbie Basho has long been overshadowed by John Fahey. While the pair's albums share some common characteristics, a new collection by Berkeley's Fantasy label shows that Basho's universe was unique in…
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Music, Six Eye Columbia

Six Eye Columbia

With its double debut releases A Million Six and Frowny Frown, Six Eye Columbia demonstrates its grasp of the bittersweet, heart-rending potential of power-pop. As sonically delicate and emotionally resonant as a plucked high-E string, A Million Six is a…
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Music, Ben There, Done That

Ben There, Done That

The limits of a career as techno superstars become apparent to the two members of Ben Wa at around 9 p.m. during an interview at their comfortably worn recording studio and practice space. That's when the Oakland-based duo comes face…
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Music, Thrown  for a Loop

Thrown for a Loop

The members of 20 Minute Loop believe they play in the straightest band around. None of the five members has major vices -- unless you count Kelly Atkins' addiction to pre-concert Throat-Coat tea and experimental hairstyles or Nils Erickson's steady…
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Music, Heavenly


With the allergy season in its denouement, pharmaceutical companies are turning their attentions to the newest in-vogue ailment: stress and anxiety. Instead of supporting commuters venting via their SUVs, the companies are suggesting that the solution to all of life's…
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Music, Beachwood Sparks

Beachwood Sparks

L.A.'s Beachwood Sparks are in love -- hazily infatuated with the psychedelic Golden State country music of late hippiedom. If you've already fallen for the very same tousled beauty, then Once We Were Trees might touch your heart too. This…
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Music, Stairs' Way to Heaven

Stairs' Way to Heaven

There is a song on Preston School of Industry's new full-length, All This Sounds Gas, that hearkens back to Scott Kannberg's stint as guitarist for one of the greatest indie rock bands of all time. Actually, there's more than one…
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