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Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Hear This: Maus Haus' Slow-Rumbling "Hey Jean"

Posted By on Tue, Nov 6, 2012 at 8:52 AM


Dark-hued S.F. electro-rockers Maus Haus are back with Light Noise, a brand-new record on brand-new local indie-electronic imprint Lavis Habits. And today we're premiering the song "Hey Jean," a slow-boil of monolithic bass, streaking guitar lines, and Maus Haus' eerie multitracked vocals. Oh, and tambourine. Tambourine is key.

See also:

* Om Records Celebrates New Lavish Habits Imprint with Maus Haus and Blackbird Blackbird

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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

S.F.'s Eux Autres: '60s Pop-Rock with Love to France

Posted By on Tue, Feb 28, 2012 at 9:39 AM

Eux Autres - RAY GORDON
  • Ray Gordon
  • Eux Autres


For most of the past 20 years, indie bands pretended the '60s never happened. Today the sounds of the Summer of Love are back in a big way, albeit with a modern spin that will keep old hippies from getting too wistful. San Francisco trio Eux Autres (say ooz-oh-tra) has been playing retro-pop since brother and sister Nicholas and Heather Larimer started performing together in Portland in 2002. (They added drummer Yoshi Nakamoto to the line up in 2008.) Their take on the past includes nods to the usual rockers, surf bands, and girl groups but, as their name implies, they also love French Yé-Yé artists like Jacques Dutronc, Claude François, and Serge Gainsbourg. The doleful Gallic attitude that seeps into the band's lyrics sets them apart from other bands and infuses the tunes on their Sun Is Sunk EP with a decidedly adult outlook. Heather and Nicholas spoke to us just before today's official release of the new mini-album. (Stream it on AOL Spinner and find two new MP3s after the jump.)

You grew up in Omaha, Nebraska. Did you play in bands there, either together or separately?

Nicholas: We hated each other for most of our childhood, so we never played music together. We started Eux Autres when I moved to Portland. I had played in a band for a while in college, but that's about it. I remember dancing to Matthew Wilder's "Break My Stride" in kindergarten and buying my first cassette (A-Ha). It was hearing Superchunk in eighth grade that made music cross the line from something other people do, to something people like me could do.

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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Colleen Green's "Goldmine" Has a Cheap, Musty Charm

Posted By on Tue, Feb 21, 2012 at 5:07 PM

Thee Colleen Green
  • Thee Colleen Green

No, Colleen Green is not Oakland's* Best Coast. Well, maybe she is, kind of. "Goldmine," the lead single off today's Milo Goes to Compton, is two-and-a-half-minutes of rough-hewn bedroom guitar pop built on a cheesy drum machine and draped with an even cheesier synth melody. There are about three layers of Green's sweet, smooth voice on top, singing in hazy melodies about a person she can't help but like. Between the sunglasses, the three chords and three chords only, and the stoner references (hey, @ColleenGreen420), this is starting to sound kind of familiar, isn't it? All we need is a cleverly named cat...

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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Alexander Spit's Mansions: Lose Yourself in 28 Tracks of Spooky Beats and Samples

Posted By on Wed, Feb 15, 2012 at 2:35 PM

That ethereal vibe you get from the above image? It's appropriate.
  • That ethereal vibe you get from the above image? It's appropriate.

Last fall, we told you about These Long Strange Nights, a then-new mixtape/album from S.F.-born, L.A.-based rapper-producer Alexander Spit. That was good stuff. But Spit came back yesterday with Mansions, a funky, spooky, mind-bending instrumental mixtape that's pretty damn engrossing. It shows Spit to be at least as talented at assembling soundscapes as he is at rapping -- and with no rhymes to mind, Mansions lets you focus on its ever-shifting textures and rhythms.

Spit himself bills Mansions as "a wide array of drugged-out 4 a.m. vibes to sample-heavy neck crampers," which is putting it pretty well. Some of the tracks here are wispy and ethereal, barely announcing their presence before they disappear; others are built on big, funky beats that beg for a huge car to bang out of. There's no rapping per se, but there are plenty of vocal samples: Slowed-down, pitch-lowered utterances, hilarious clips from television, and, on "DMT," one lengthy explanation (endorsement, really) of the psychedelic powers of the naturally occurring drug dimethyltryptamine. That track is lots of fun on its own, but this is whole mixtape is probably something you should hear:

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Thursday, January 5, 2012

Take a Fuzzed-Out 'Tumble Down' With S.F.'s Terry Malts

Posted By on Thu, Jan 5, 2012 at 3:18 PM

Terry Malts
  • Terry Malts

Terry Malts is among the local rock bands whose full-length debuts we're most excited about in 2012, and the album's first single, "Tumble Down" oughta show why: With sizzling guitars playing atop a molten bassline and Phil Benson's distantly crackling vocals, the song is textbook indie rock turned into a casual mess of pop catchiness. All its offending grit is balanced by the insistent merseybeat and "bop-baa"-ing in the chorus, making this upbeat song sound like it's suspended inside a swimming pool of mud. That's a good, good thing, though. Check out "Tumble Down" after the jump.

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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Well-Named Heart Break Gang Wants To Steal Your Woman with 'She Ready'

Posted By on Tue, Jan 3, 2012 at 12:35 PM


"Your girl, she ready," goes the titular refrain here, and after hearing this new track from the Bay Area's Heart Break Gang, well, yours may not be the only lady running out to grind (or worse) with these boys. Over a confidently laid-back bassline made by local producer/rapper Iamsu!, the gang woos the lasses of lesser men with various smoothly delivered boasts and leers. The whole thing feels comfortably smug -- "bet you found my number in your bitch's cellphone" -- and pretty much deserves to be. This is the first single off the Heart Break Gang's upcoming street album/mixtape, which doesn't yet have a set date for release. Play it for your 2012 conquests.

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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Hear This: Los Rakas' Raka Rich Wants You to 'Check Yo B*tch'

Posted By on Tue, Nov 29, 2011 at 10:39 AM

Raka Rich.
  • Raka Rich.

Panama-born, Oakland-raised Raka Rich is best known as one-half of the rap group Los Rakas (with cousin Raka Dun), but he's also a solo artist who is planning to drop a new EP sometime in 2012. Today we have a taste of that release with a new single called "Check Yo B*tch." With its gentle, R&B- reminiscent backing track, and lyrics that portray some cocksure macking, the bilingual song harkens back to the player era of '90s Bay Area rap, when artists like Rappin 4-Tay and Dru Down parlayed coldly addictive anthems to international attention. Check the tune after the jump.

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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Hear Alexander Spit's Expansive, Satisfying New Mixtape, These Long Strange Nights

Posted By on Tue, Nov 1, 2011 at 9:25 AM

Alexander Spit - BRICK STOWELL
  • Brick Stowell
  • Alexander Spit

S.F.-and-L.A.-based rapper Alexander Spit has a new mixtape out. It's called These Long Strange Nights, it's this up-and-coming rapper's biggest release so far, and it's worth your time. The 11 tracks on Long Strange Nights wander from blunt swagger to mellow musing: "Strange and Unusual" starts things off watery and laid-back, but by the time you get to "Real RSWD Pt. 2," you're in full industrial-banger territory. "Posse Up" is a balls-out track made to blast when you're hitting the town -- it isn't shy about that specific purpose -- and "El Camino" is a panoramic rap anthem. But there are plenty of moodier, more introspective moments along the way, too. Spit seems better suited to technical, imagery-laden rhyming than forceful bluster, but he makes a strong case for himself on most of these tracks. Download the full mixtape -- along with art for each and every track -- after the jump.

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

S.F. Rappers the Jealous Guys Issue the Icy, Ethereal Audiobook EP

Posted By on Tue, Oct 11, 2011 at 8:32 AM

The Jealous Guys
  • The Jealous Guys

Here's yet another promising release from rising S.F. rappers the Jealous Guys: It's the Audiobook EP, a four-track collection of dimly ethereal beats capped with some of the more vivid rhymes we've heard -- especially from an S.F. outfit: "Headed to Pier 39/ Start an Arcade Fire that turn Tron into Phoenix ash/ My soul rise fuck a gravity overcast/ In sync with graffiti crying me a river/ Under the overpass, at last," goes a verse on "Genesis."

This collection of songs is what we might call cinematic -- a step or two more abstract than the hoes-and-blunts street hip-hop we get a lot around here. (Although its lyrics deal a lot with S.F. -- there's even a song called "Miss San Francisco.") The EP seems to sprout more dimensions with repeated listens, too; check it out after the jump.

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Thursday, October 6, 2011

Hear Mwahaha, East Bay Bleep-Rock That Ain't No Laughing Matter

Posted By on Thu, Oct 6, 2011 at 6:53 PM

They do have an awesome promo photo.
  • They do have an awesome promo photo.

We're a bit unsure of the name, but anyone looking for experimental new rock/electronic sounds out of the Bay Area (or anywhere, really), oughta give Mwhahaha a listen. The band sounds more than a little bit like TV on the Radio sometimes, but -- as you may have gathered from its moniker -- it is far more playful. There are flourishes of analog synthesizers, bent guitars, and even the occasional pop hook in the band's songs, which are usually built over some towering, propulsive rhythm, whether live drums or machine-based. And while we get a little bit of pop-oriented verse-chorus-versing, Mwahaha also likes to take its songs in adventurous directions that may not always be foreseen at the start of things.

Check out three free Mwahaha MP3s after the jump.

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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.'"