You are currently browsing posts tagged with Ladies Who Rock
Speaking of which, stop looking at her, dagnabbit! Read this! Eyes to the left! To the left!
Half-Scottish/half-Japanese, raised in Osaka and schooled in the UK, she’s a testament to why race/culture mashing is so freaking cool. Soft-stepped breezy melodies punctuated by bright, punchy vocals, and seminal rock tracks (like, oh, Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire”) interpreted by a six-string ukelele (that’s right, a six-string ukelele), give the sense of a whole amalgam of influences. Are we at in island jam or a dirty pub crawl? Are we vibing Celtic or feeling super Zen? Quite frankly, we don’t care.
See what we mean:
And get more Clara Belle here.
There is something blissful about the delicate, rinky-dink harmonies of Loverlee, a female-dominated indie quintet operating out of Los Angeles. The sound lo-fi and simple, as pretty as the band can possibly imagine it, as professional as they can make it.
And they couldn’t be cuter. Look at them–so nerdy it’s fantastic. So tragically unhip that they are actually way ahead of the curve. Flutes? Cellos? You want to root for them before they even start playing, and the minute they do you can’t stop smiling out of pride.
(Yes, I know, it sounds like I just rattled off a purseful of backhanded compliments, but I promise you I didn’t. Ask my childhood tennis instructor–my backhand sucks.)
Listen to Loverlee here.
Last night, we caught the Black Kids show at the El Rey. There were a surprising number of geezers in the audience (we count ourselves among them). Which is funny, because what we love about Black Kids is how young they are–young, fun, and unjaded. They were stoked to be playing a packed house in L.A. They don’t even have their stage banter down yet, unless you count Reggie Youngblood using “fuckin’” and “motherfuckers” a lot. Sometimes Reggie sang off-key. Their set was short, because as Reggie put it, they’ve only got “like, seven songs.” But they’re still fuckin’ entertaining, and when they pulled out the Clash’s “The Magnificent Seven” for their encore, we fell in love with them all over again.
A lot has been made of Reggie, because he’s the lead singer, he’s got that badass Filipifro, and he rocks the skinny jeans. Not enough has been said about his sis Ali, however, who is a stone cold fox. She’s 180 degrees from the pale, wan, depressed-looking, twiggy drip that you always see plaguing the indie rock scene. She’s stacked and she doesn’t hide it. She let her hair down and shook it loose in the middle of the set. When she smiles, she looks like a Blasian Betty Boop. And she smiles a lot. So, yeah, we would totally do her.
Download the Black Kids’ first full-length album Partie Traumatic on iTunes. Then go see them in concert and tell us what you think. In the meantime, enjoy this dramatic reading of the lyrics to “Partie Traumatic”:
UK-based band the Go! Team is something like sonic Lexapro–a happy pill for your ears. On Monday, they made their Proof of Youth B-side “Milk Crisis”–ridiculously boppy and infectious–available for free download on their website. If you watch the Cartoon Network, you may have seen snippets of “Milk Crisis” in recent promos. Here’s the whole video, with Kaori Tsuchida singing in English and Japanese:
Feel better, don’t you? Click here for more happy happy fun fun at the Go! Team’s website.
It looks like our favorite ballsy lass is embracing her Asian (better) half! Karen O launched her long-anticipated side project–Native Korean Rock & the Fishnets–in Brooklyn last weekend, and even if we weren’t kinda obsessed with her, we’d really, really love it.
Whether or not you think it sounds like a bunch of misplaced Yeah Yeah Yeahs secret tracks or the Second Coming of Christ, grab a taste here.
If all ladies were as bitchin’ as you, we really wouldn’t have anything to complain about. Rock on, lady!
Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” is a perfect song. What’s the definition of a perfect song? One that, no matter how it’s interpreted, can’t be fucked up. And, by extension of that logic, it’s a song that can’t really be interpreted that much in the first place, ipso facto of its perfection (other songs that qualify: almost anything in the McCartney/Lennon songbook, The Kinks’ “Waterloo Sunset,” Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide,” “My Funny Valentine,” the Willie Nelson-penned-Patsy Cline-performed “Crazy,” Joy Division’s “Love Will Tear Us Apart”). Kina Grannis posted her own version of “Hallelujah” on YouTube a few days ago and does a nice job covering it, although, like I said, it’s nearly impossible to murder:
If you’re in the L.A.-area, catch Kina this Saturday for free or July 25 at The Hotel Cafe.
Most of you know of our aversion to the term “shoegaze,” and how we often loathe band names that sound more like sentences–but The Pains of Being Pure at Heart have gently rocked themselves into our own pure and icy hearts. The band is simply adorable, charged with power percussion and gentle bi-gender vocal harmonies, stretching across the speakers like a My-Bloody-Valentine-Jejune-Silver-Scooter-Rilo-Kiley-Rentals power punch.
Well, we must admit, there’s hardly anything painful about that!
Feel the pain here.
I re-watched my friend Daniel’s film loudQuietloud, a documentary about my favorite rock band The Pixies, on the long flight over from LA to NYC last weekend. However you feel about the vérité content, which poetically shows the seminal band’s disparate–and sometimes desperate–situation, it’s loaded with beautiful mixes of their timeless songs and inevitably puts me in the mood for every song of theirs I’ve ever loved. In addition to desperately wanting to listen through my entire Pixies discography, I’ve had a hankering for Fugazi’s Repeater, Modest Mouse’s Lonesome Crowded Night, Blonde Redhead’s La Mia Vita Violenta! and Pavement’s Slanted and Enchanted ever since.
What a perfect time for The Moonrats, a ridiculously beautiful LA trio that reminds us of everything we liked about music in the 90s, using winky, modern Isaac Brock-style interpretations, all with a kind of Arcade Fire exuberance. That is not to say that they don’t have something special all their own. Rather, they feel a bit like a college best friend– who was so fashionable, smart, fabulous, and familiar always, and years later, even with increasingly infrequent visits, they feel only more familiar and better with age.
Listen up here.
We fell hard for Maia Hirasawa last summer for a number of reasons: we love her voice, face, wardrobe, ganas, nationality, ethnicity, tunes, dance moves, and name…. for starters.
Ms. Hirasawa debuted a new single (and a bitchin’ new coif) last month called “The Worrying Kind,” which is currently killing it in Sweden. We only wish she would non-worry herself over the pond to the States.
Thanks again, jRu!
We sure do like brassy ladies, and Kiai, a singer-songwriter from BrookLYYYN, is no exception. Don’t be fooled by that acoustic guitar, my friends–she often toggles between gentle refrains and feral, anti-folk riffs. We wonder if she listened to a lot of X when she was younger (cuz we sure did).
X-amine her closely here.
We love female-fronted, cacaphonic punk bands as much as the next person, and Texas natives Tokyo Nites are simply no exception. If you were lucky, you caught them rocking Beerland at last week’s South by Southwest Music Festival. But if not, you can still listen to their catchy-like-a-veneral-disease tracks every single day on their MySpace page.
We’re particularly fond of their motto: “Don’t fuck with us.” It reminds us of…well, us. Nothing wrong with that.