Music – 2012 Line Up

Movies and Live Local Bands

Every week one of Los Angeles’ up and coming local bands will be performing before the feature presentation. Come out early and show your support of the local music scene.

May 26 – Santa Monica
ISLANDS
Watch the “Hallways” music video

We are thrilled to have acclaimed modernist pop band Islands kick off Eat|See|Hear 2012! Their new album A Sleep & A Forgetting was released earlier this year on February 14th via Anti-Records.

“This album is far more personal than any I’ve made before,” band leader Nick Thorburn explains. “I left New York after the end of a relationship and came to Los Angeles. There was a piano where I was staying and that’s where I wrote these songs. This record deals with loss, with memory and forgetting and with dreaming.”

Island’s latest offers all the shimmering sonic textures and irresistible melodies that have come to the band’s enduring appeal, but there is a deeply personal cathartic undercurrent to the songs. Far from being self pitying, A Sleep & A Forgetting powerfully transforms personal unrest into affecting and soulful pop music. The new record features some of the most startling and memorable songs from a supremely talented band that has continued to both evolve or surprise.

May 26 – Santa Monica
THE DIAMOND LIGHT
Opening for Islands and Eat|See|Hear is Los Angeles rock and soul band The Diamond Light formed over long summers and weekly blues jams in their home state of New Hampshire. Singer and guitarist Griffin Young began writing songs with drummer Ian Ochs in Ian’s father’s band as kids before meeting bass player Brian Stanley in High School. After moving to Los Angeles the band added the formidable multi-instrumentalist Trevor Menear building their powerful brand of rock, blues and soul around guitars, bass, keyboards and drums. After releasing two E.P.’s The Diamond Light’s debut full length album is due out this summer.


“…the truth that is realizable in a dead man’s bones and is beyond the Tree of Buddha as well as the Cross of Jesus. Believe that the world is an ethereal flower, and ye live! I knew this! I also knew that I was the worst bum in the world. The diamond light was in my eyes.”.. – Jack Kerouac, The Dharma Bums

June 2 – Pasadena
TIC TIC BOOM!
“It’s a Way of Life.”

For Mike DeLay and Leilani Francisco, that’s exactly what Tic Tic Boom! has been for the last five years. The two founding members live together above their home studio in Los Angeles. They pride themselves in independently handcrafting everything from start to finish—from the home recordings to screen-printed merch and DIY music videos.

Mike had befriended fellow bartender Francisco and who introduced him to some songs she had written. Their relationship—-musical and romantic—-blossomed from there. They moved into Mike’s back-alley rehearsal studio and holed up for a year just writing and practicing. The band released their first punk-influenced EP How to Defuse a Bomb in 2008.

Released in January 2011, Reasons & Rhymes received a wealth of praise and recognition from publications like Sonicbids, Buzzbands LA, and The Owl Mag. CMJ.com described their music as “hook-laced synthpop that casts live drums and guitars as conspicuously as it does sugary vocals and catchy synth loops.”

After a year of tirelessly playing shows and releasing acoustic versions and remixes, Tic Tic Boom! is nearly ready to release their third EP, Before the Sun Rises. It was dubbed thus by the two’s nearly nocturnal writing and recording schedule and, as with each of their previous releases, the upcoming EP showcases a different side of Tic Tic Boom! “[Before the Sun Rises] deals with concepts of life and death,” explains Francisco about the inspiration behind the EP. “How all things are cyclical and we’re all just a small piece of an enormous never-ending puzzle. It’s about struggling to understand your place in all of that.” 

To support their live performance, DeLay and Francisco are joined by Trevor Hunnicutt on drums and Matt Gurgol on bass.

June 9 – Sherman Oaks
KEVIN MARTIN
Meet Kevin Martin – a solo pop-rock songwriter with a sound that’s described as “Burt Bacharach meets Queen and Elton John.” A San Diego native, Kevin got his musical start in taking classical piano lessons after his parents overheard him singing at a young age. He started writing songs at age 12 and played his first bar gig with a band at age 16. In high school he honed his vocal skills and won multiple awards for his stage performances in a variety of musicals, and was voted “Most likely to be on MTV.”

While Kevin is technically making his debut as a solo performer, he is a seasoned veteran of performing in rock bands – most notably playing keyboards and co-writing for established San Diego pop-rockers, Get Back Loretta. The band has won a total of six San Diego Music Awards while Kevin has been part of the band.

Kevin’s style of music is what he calls “Throwback Pop” – which takes his modern flair for performance and combines it with his love of vintage piano-pop stylings.

June 16 – San Pedro, Port of LA
KING WASHINGTON

Saturated in complex vocal harmonies and intelligent chord progressions, the music of King Washington is a throwback to when rock n’ roll was a songwriter’s game. Combining the vocal styles and songwriting ethos of classic writers of yore, with the angst and adventure of growing up in 1990′s Los Angeles, King Washington’s music lives amongst the precious realm of fully unexpected yet somehow familiar rock n’ roll.

June 23 – Santa Monica
GEORGE GLASS
Meeting in a bar in anxious, pre-apocalyptic Los Angeles in the autumn of 2009, two local music vets (singer/guitarist Nicholas Ceglio and bassist Peter DiBiasio) and one mysterious Bay Area drifter (drummer Nathan Kondor) decided to write some tunes together. Within three weeks, they were playing gigs under the name George Glass, rocking the beer-soaked clubs and sweat-stained art spaces of Silver Lake and Echo Park. Even if this band had been formed by three death row inmates who had run out of appeals, it would not have developed with any greater urgency.


This tenacity is reflected in their music, on both their recordings and their energetic live show. These painstakingly crafted songs hearken back to a time when the appellation “indie” described a vital sound and a tough attitude, before it evolved into the catch-all term we know today. Yet the intricate nature of George Glass’s cavernous rock and roll assault, tempered by witty introspection, sounds much more like a future that may never arrive.



June 30 – Brentwood
AQUARIUM DRUNKARD presents THE ORWELLS

The ORWELLS are made up of five seventeen year olds from Chicago, Illinois. They play rock n roll music. Their names are Mario, Grant, Henry, Dominick and Matt. They write songs — scratch that, primitive teenage battle cries — about girls and America and being suspended from high school. Although one might categorize The ORWELLS’s distinct brand of the blues as garage or punk, they would be wrong. The ORWELLS’s sound comes from a deeper, different place. A place both long forgotten and also timeless. Their first LP, “Remember When” comes out this summer on Autumn Tone Records. Be the first on your block to snatch it up.


July 7 – Grand Hope Park / FIDM
THE LITTLE ONES
Watch the “Lovers Who Uncover” Video

Our friend Moses tells us about The Little Ones’ journey out of the land of White Noise…The Little Ones finally left the land of White Noise and set sail to bring good cheer to others everywhere. Uncle Lee’s Rule of Feet proved to be too infectious and the boys wanted to spread the word to everyone across the land. They crisscrossed many roads to find that there were others who wanted to experience ‘The Rule’. The Little Ones gave it all they got. Some were against it; some were for it. In the end, The Little Ones discovered that everyone possessed their own ‘Rule of Feet’. They discovered that the ‘The Rule’ appeared in many flavors, shapes, and sizes. Their ‘Rule’ became ordinary. They journeyed along the pacific coast and found a stretch of shore draped in black sand. There they set-up camp and walked across its unique seascape. With every step, the grain embraced their toes and the shore welcomed them as it pushed and pulled. The water drew close; sand, water, and feet became one. A touch of mid day sun broke from the sky and they found a rhythm from the morning tide. So delighted, they started assembling new songs that would encapsulate their recent findings.

July 14 – San Pedro, Port of LA
MAX & THE MOON
Emerging out of the combustive indie music scene of Southern California in 2009, Max and the Moon and their relentless gig playing have created a buzz that rides on its own frequency. The four-piece band displays a talent for intricate songwriting and sounds that resemble the classic harmonies of the Beach Boys and early Coldplay to the catchy dance beats of Passion Pit. Substance Magazine writes, “their music has a way of pulling you in with their starry guitar echoing in combination with John’s soothing vocals and superb upper register.”

Laden with strong guitar licks, steady piano and punctuated vocal harmonies—the band makes full use of two primary vocalists. Max and the Moon’s “The Way I See,” showcases the band’s songwriting and experimentation with new sounds, expanding their scope and offering a significant contribution to the ever-changing music scene in Los Angeles. “Out of My Head” opens with cleverly conjured sampling of Matt’s unique voice to make us feel the irony of having someone stuck in your head. These guys have a lucid vision and you experience it in their music—think of the Lost Boys landing in LA—that is Max and the Moon.


July 21 – North Hollywood
NIGHTMARE AND THE CAT
At first glance, they couldn’t be any more different.

Django Stewart, 20, is as flamboyant as they come. Tight clothing, jewelry, the “just-rolled-out-of-bed hair,” he is the visual definition of an androgynous L.A. frontman. His brother, Sam Stewart, 23, dressed down in nondescript hipster attire, is serious about everything that comes through the monitors during soundcheck. He listens to each musician with intent, the elder sibling obviously seeking a level of his defined perfection.

The comparisons run all across the board for Nightmare & the Cat, with ties to Jeff Buckley for Django’s lyrics, voice and even stage presence standing out; whereas the immediate thought of Radiohead comes when you hear the music and instrumentation of their track, “Girl In a Glass Dress.” Sam’s love clearly lies with Thom Yorke. Radiohead is not Django’s “cup of tea, as he is a melody person,” he says. The younger brother’s allegiances lie more with Patti Smith, Jimi Hendrix and, as witnessed in his sound, Jeff Buckley.

“When Django and I decided to write songs together, our original idea is that we wanted Jeff Buckley meets the Pixies,” Sam says. “It was our concept, or whatever. But obviously it’s gone down a few different routes. I think if we were so strictly adhering to that idea, it would get monotonous after a while.”


July 28 – Brentwood
STATE TO STATE
Born in 2009 out of the most unlikely of places, the Los Angeles Craigslist classifieds, State to State are all about the music and nothing but the music. After independently recording and releasing an EP in 2010, the band is currently in preproduction for the recording of their debut LP. Their well-tuned engine runs on a myriad of influential fuels that range from Pink Floyd to Portishead, Sigur Rós to Soundgarden, and early U2 to the late Jeff Buckley. “While there might be reminiscences of other sounds, their sound doesn’t copy anyone. What really vaults this band ahead of the pack are Shea Stratton’s vocals. His range is huge, extending from a rich tenor up to a falsetto that has ease, power and expressiveness.” (Examiner.com)

State to State maintain the same uncompromising love for creating their music that was once rampant in the 60’s and 70’s, but without ever looking or sounding like they just got back from another magical mystery tour.


August 4 – Long Beach
ACT AS IF
Act As If released their first full-length album There’s a Light in 2010 (most of which was recorded by front-man Peter Verdell), and have since had several song placements in TV shows spanning ABC, CBS, MTV, and IFC. They also have several songs in rotation on DMX Radio (being played in retail nationwide). In July 2011, Apple licensed the band’s song “About Saying and Meaning Goodbye” for use in its Lion OS video, showcased on Apple.com.

In fall of 2011, the band shot a video for their cover of Blink 182’s “Pathetic (from Blink 182’s 1997 album Dude Ranch), and gave the traditional punk song a slower, ballad feel. Mark Hoppus, lead singer of Blink 182 and host of Fuse TV’s “Hoppus on Music”, found out about the cover and posted it on his personal Facebook page.

Most recently, Act As If released a new 4-song EP The Iron Is Hot on February 21, 2012. Songs from the EP have been featured on buzzworthy blogs such as Kings of A&R and Kick Kick Snare. Additionally, their song “Oh My My” has received airplay on KROQ’s Locals Only program with Kat Corbett.

The band is comprised of Peter Verdell [vocals, guitar], Diego de la Rosa [drums], J. David Carrera [guitar], and Sara Lindsay [keys, vocals].

August 11 – Hollywood
ALEX MAC

Exploding out of South Central Los Angeles is Alex Mac, 1/10th of the Hip Hop collective Wednesdays. At the age of 11, he began free-styling back when free-styling didn’t involve smart phones or the memorization of lyrics. By 2006 He took to the chitlin circuit with a band by the name of cupids bullet. Following moderate success the band went on hiatus.

After a couple years behind the scenes working under the radar with Aftermath Songwriters; He wrote and recorded the “#WDLAhaveagoodone” Project, using tracks from Menahan Street Band, Daft Punk, TV on the Radio, and RJD2. Alex Mac’s first single from that project “Ghostwriter” reached #1 on Wild 109′s Michael Jay Show. Now being backed by the Dub (Wednesdays) and his new band Dub 4:15 every show is electric. Genesoul Productions Four-Time Grammy Nominated Haskel Jackson has referred to Alex Mac and the Wednesdays Movement as “a breath of fresh air, you would’ve thought these kids graduated from Wu-School.”

Alex Mac’s music is a perfect blend of 90′s hip hop, and modern day mainstream. He is on a quest of evolution hell bent on breaking open that box called hip hop. When asked to comment on how he plans on changing the game, he is quoted saying. “I’ve listened to the greats (rock-rap) all my life, but unlike most people i actually listened. I am what happens when you pay attention, then crave attention.”

August 18 – Beverly Hills
MONTË MAR
Montë Mar is a modern alternative/pop band that formed in early 2011. The group came together out of a collective desire to play original music after frontman, Brian Green, gave up touring as a sideman with numerous artists including Michael Buble, to pursue a more creative path.

Montë Mar’s music tends to be colorful, with thoughtfully layered melodies over a bed of explosive drums, making live shows a mandatory workout for all who attend. They recently performed on Good Day LA and were listed as one of Buzzband’s groups to watch of 2012. Their debut EP, Different Place, was released on October 15th. Montë Mar is Brian Green(vocals, guitar), Bill Zimmerman(vocals, keyboards), Kyle Crane(drums), and Dylan Durboraw(bass).


August 18 – Beverly Hills
VINNIE FERRA

Since the release of their first full-length studio album “Man Vs. Machine” in 2010, this indie/folk band has built a strong local buzz. With headlining residencies at The Hotel Café and Silverlake Lounge, a sold out show at The El Rey Theatre and opening for Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros at the Grove in Anaheim, the band has been able to expand their local popularity into the national spotlight. After playing SXSW in Austin, TX, Vinnie Ferra tackled a coast-to-coast tour with stops in San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, Boston, Washington D.C., and New York. Production is currently underway for a new EP with heavyweight folk producer Pierre de Reeder of Rilo Kiley (produced M. Ward, She and Him, Vampire Weekend, Jenny and Johnny). Get a sneak peek here and in person before Ghostbusters in Beverly Hills.


August 25 – Long Beach
LA FONT
Meet Danny Bobbe: nightbus intellectual, enfant terrible, LA Font frontman. Transplanted to Los Angeles from Montana in 2008 with little more than a Volvo station wagon to his name, he’s since established himself as one of the city’s most compelling songwriters. (The Volvo met a worse fate.) LA Font’s songs are indie rock laced with hooks, jutting with spiky guitars on loan from Pavement, and take an outsider’s perspective on hipsters and gangsters; traumatic brain injury and Sidney Crosby; the homeless in Santa Monica and on Skid Row; crumbling friendships and subway hucksters selling something that they swear is 14-karat gold (“and truthfully,” Bobbe wails in “White Man,” “it’s really hard to say”). For LA Font, the city is bleak, gritty, laden with traps – but it remains a place that promises change to the courageous.

The band – singer/guitarist Danny Bobbe, guitarist Jon Perry, bassist Greg Katz and drummer Harlow Rodriguez – followed their 2010 self-released debut “The American Leagues” with the 7″ single “Sharks” last year.

September 1 – Downtown
RAHEEM COHEN
If you live in the East side of town, chances are you’ve heard Raheem Cohen. These young musicians from Silverlake have been honing their craft for over thirteen years, though you wouldn’t guess it from their ages or sense of musical integrity. The oldest member of the group is twenty, and seeing the band play for the first time provokes a familiarity that only seasoned musicians can really captivate.

Raheem Cohen’s influences can be heard so eloquently in the roots of their music, yet everything the band does is original. While they pay homage to their artistic heroes, Raheem Cohen never loses sight of their own creativity. Their sound is reminiscent of Hendrix, Marley, and Sly Stone; yet at the same time it is evocative of the White Stripes, Rage Against the Machine, and the Black Keys.


September 8 – Northridge
PK
PK released their first full length entitled Into the Roaring at hometown venue Downtown Brew in San Luis Obispo. While capacity maintains that 400 is the legal limit, 462 fans lined the streets and crowded the venue to watch this charismatic young group play.

Since that time PK has:
* Been recognized and published by Rolling Stone Magazine as 1 of the top 16 unsigned bands in the nation.
* Won a coveted New Times award for Album of the Year in San Luis Obispo County.
* Opened for Aerosmith at the California Mid State Fair.
* Had over 34,000 views for their self produced/directed music video for the song “London”

September 15 – Westwood
SO MANY WIZARDS
It’s taken his whole life so far for Nima Kazerouni and So Many Wizards to make this first album—a life that started in the middle of a war, stretched across five countries and four continents and bounced across Los Angeles’ thriving D.I.Y. pop community to land in a live-in office in the middle of the LAX airport (long story) and on a full-length debut called Warm Nothing.

When Kazerouni first began playing guitar himself as a teenager, those years of flight and stress and trauma spilled out from him. It’s when he first discovered how powerful music could really be, he says. But after he finally stepped onstage as the then-solo project So Many Wizards in 2008, he found he also had the power to draw like-minded musicians to him. Soon, he’d build a band — one careful connection at a time — and with backing from a who’s-who of L.A.’s new generation of indie-pop musicians, Kazerouni’s solo songs bloomed in full.

Joined now by Erik Felix, Geoff Geis and Frank Maston, each regular contributors at celebrated hometown venues like the Smell and Pehrspace, So Many Wizard’s Warm Nothing is a deeply personal and idiosyncratic suite of meticulously detailed twee-pop — a responding echo to artists like Neutral Milk Hotel or the Clean, who found power and catharsis both in softness and subtlety instead of over-cranked guitars and overwrought lyrics. Songs like “Sleepwalk” (developed from Kazerouni’s traumatic childhood stay in a U.S. Border Control detention facility) or “Yeah Right” play like kiwi-pop literateurs the Verlaines if they’d been planted right in the middle of the Sarah Records discography — all guitar and ardor and falsetto and metaphor, all delivered with breathless conviction and bottomless depth. It’s dreamy, it’s hopeful, it’s got grit and it stings, says Kazerouni — this is what pop music is to him.