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Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Premiere: Get Lost in The Grungy, Moody Textures of Steel Cranes' New Single, "Pretty"

Posted By on Wed, Jun 8, 2016 at 10:00 AM

Steel Cranes - RUSS WRIGHT
  • Russ Wright
  • Steel Cranes

In Steel Crane's new song, "Pretty," — the first single to be released from their upcoming sophomore album, Tango — rollicking drums and bass collide with salacious guitar licks to create a moody, grunge-rock tune revolving around the topic of prettiness. 

It's almost hard to believe that the song was created by a duo, consisting of Tracy Shapiro (vocals, guitar) and Amanda Schukle (drums, bass, guitar, keys), because there's just so damn much going on in it. Throughout the track, tempos boomerang, transitioning from deep, harmonic chords to explosions of thundering drums and chaotic bass, before easing back down with some titillating high-hats. And, on top of it all, there is Shapiro's languid, raspy voice, reminiscent of an early Courtney Love. 

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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Premiere: Listen to Oakland Rapper Tree Thomas' Second EP, Your Eyes

Posted By on Tue, May 31, 2016 at 12:00 PM

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Twenty-six-year-old Oakland rapper Tree Thomas is a testament to doing multiple things with one's life. After graduating from Portland State University in 2012, the six-foot-eight MC moved to Malta, a small island nation off the coast of Italy, to play basketball for its national team. For two years he balled professionally, before moving back stateside to pursue a career as a rapper. (Although, he penned his debut mixtape, 2013's Peach Street, while in Malta. Talk about multi-tasking!) 

He followed Peach Street with a self-titled EP released last year, and today he drops his newest project, the EP Your Eyes, premiered here on SF Weekly. Over glitchy, synth-driven beats produced by Jay Ant of The Heartbreak Gang, Thomas spits acerbic witticisms in his characteristic laidback flow.

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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Premiere: Nina Grae Highlights Racial Tensions in The Music Video For "Revolution"

Posted By on Thu, May 26, 2016 at 12:00 PM

Nina Grae - JOONBUG LENWORTH MCINTOSH
  • Joonbug Lenworth McIntosh
  • Nina Grae

San Francisco singer-songwriter Nina Grae gets political in the new music video for, "Revolution," premiered here on SF Weekly. The thundering, piano-laced ballad is a powerful indictment against the evils in the world, specifically police brutality and racial profiling, punctuated by Grae's plaintive, visceral singing. 

Footage of the late Sandra Bland and Freddie Gray, the Frisco 5 hunger strikers, and numerous other instances of minorities being mistreated by police punctuate the video, which is at turns striking, depressing, and moving. Which is exactly what the 29-year-old Grae wanted. 

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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Premiere: Berkeley Rapper Rexx Life Raj Pays Homage to Steph Curry in His Spacy, Cavernous New Song, "Young Wardell"

Posted By on Wed, May 25, 2016 at 12:04 PM

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You know what's great about Steph Curry? Well, there's a lot of things that are great about him — he's a team player, a great shooter, a nice dude, and a seemingly dope dad — but what gets us going is his road to success. Despite the fact that he's neither the tallest nor fastest guy on the court, he worked his ass off to be the best player that he could, and you know what? It paid off. 

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Premiere: Let The Fuzziness of "Feel" Overtake You in Future Shapes' New Video

Posted By on Wed, May 25, 2016 at 10:00 AM

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In San Francisco band Future Shapes' new music video for their single "Feel," sounds and even memories start to get a little fuzzy. The video for the dreamy, reverb-seeped track, premiered here on SF Weekly, is the latest song off of the band's debut EP, Microchasm, to get its own music video. 

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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Premiere: Listen to Sebastopol Rapper J.Lately's New Single, "Closer"

Posted By on Tue, May 24, 2016 at 10:25 AM

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In Sebastopol rapper J.Lately's new single, "Closer" — premiered here on SF Weekly and available for free download on SoundCloud —  the up-and-coming wordsmith waxes poetic, in his laid back flow, about the long road to success and the struggles that come along with it. The cavernous, reverb- and guitar-heavy track was produced by Bay Area MC/producer Fabes, and is Lately's first release since he dropped his 10-track album, Let's Just Be Friends, last October. 

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Monday, May 23, 2016

Premiere: San Francisco Rapper Babii Cris Drops Her Sophomore Album, Fearless

Posted By on Mon, May 23, 2016 at 10:26 AM

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Babii Cris is a 22-year-old rapper from San Francisco with a penchant for penning candid, introspective lyrics and a knack for spitting quickly and hard. She began producing around the age of 13 when one of her mom's friends showed her how to record a song on her computer. Upon graduating from high school in 2011, Cris enrolled in a community college, taking electronic music courses to learn how to further craft and produce her own music. A year later, she transferred to San Francisco Art Institute's audio production program, where she learned how to mix, master, and engineer. 

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Thursday, May 19, 2016

Premiere: Experience The Suckiness of Breaking Up in The Music Video For R&B Singer Cash Campain's Song "Notifications"

Posted By on Thu, May 19, 2016 at 10:00 AM

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Breaking up is never easy. They always suck and hurt and stick in your mind for longer than you'd like. And now that we've got so many social media sites, breakups are even worse. If you don't "breakup" with someone on each platform, then you get bombarded with notifications about them, which just makes the whole experience even more painful.

In "Notifications," the third single off of Cash Campain's new album Michael In '79 (released in April), the East Bay singer explores this 21st century predicament. Today, the track is followed by a music video — premiered here on SF Weekly — shot by @photosbydarrin around Marin and on the Golden Gate Bridge. 

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Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Premiere: The Y Axes Get Real in The Indie-Rock Track, "Great Escape"

Posted By on Tue, May 17, 2016 at 9:00 AM

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The thing about expectations is that they usually (always?) disappoint. In their new single, "Great Escape," San Francisco band The Y Axes explores this theme, most notably in the context of being too young to know what you want or what you're getting yourself into. Buttressed by leadsinger Alexi Rose Belchere's pointed, crystalline voice, the guitar-heavy indie-rock song, which was written by Belchere, is based off of her own experiences as a young person with great expectations. 

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Monday, May 16, 2016

Premiere: San Francisco's MOSAICS Will Inspire You To Live Out Your Dreams in Their New Single "Freedom"

Posted By on Mon, May 16, 2016 at 12:00 PM

MOSAICS - ELENA KULIKOVA
  • Elena Kulikova
  • MOSAICS

Do anything for a long enough period of time and you'll start to feel restless. Add a boss and a schedule to the mix and you might even start to feel a bit chained downed and enslaved. 

In San Francisco trio MOSAICS's new song, "Freedom," premiered today on SF Weekly, they explore this need to break loose and live. And the answer, they find, is in the music. As vocalist Maryam Sadeghian sings in the chorus: "I am so much lighter now / We found freedom in the sound / Don't deny the levity / My spirit sings with brevity." 

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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.'"