R. Kelly kept things remarkably restrained at a Friday night show nearly three years to the day after he was acquitted of child pornography charges. But even without any Trapped in the Closet songs, superhero anthems like "The World's Greatest," or suggestive dancing, he still let off a little flashiness: A giant letter projected onscreen — supposedly from his long-deceased mother — proclaimed the R&B singer's influence and greatness.
"In the Sunshine," a new song from S.F. indie-pop quartet A B & the Sea, might just be the local summer jam of the year. The Wallpaper-produced track melds the band's beachy harmonies with a throbbing disco beat, and sounds like it'd hit just fine on pop radio. Last year this band covered Katy Perry; this year, it oughta be frightening her.
Oakland rapper Kreayshawn confirmed that she signed a deal with Columbia after the video for "Gucci Gucci" got two million views in two weeks and made her an Internet sensation. Naturally, a backlash quickly followed: The tiny, white 21-year-old was accused of denigrating black women, thoughtlessly spouting the N-word, and having "wack" rhymes. We think she's fun — and we're happy to see a hip-hop artist gaining notoriety for an antimaterialist anthem for once.
Whatever you thought of Tuesday's massive U2 concert — as skeptics, we didn't love much of it — the worst performance of the night was on the 880 freeway, where a sprawling mess of cars kept some fans waiting for hours to get inside. Once close to O.co Coliseum, many found the parking lot already full. The jam was so bad that some fans say they'll consider legal action if they don't get refunds.
Atlanta "flower-punk" quartet the Black Lips dropped a great new album, Arabia Mountain, on Tuesday. Too bad they didn't play most of the best songs from it at their Saturday Great American Music Hall show. The band's garage-slop got a big pit going, but apparently the members don't know that "Bicentennial Man" is a winner.
R.I.P. Darryl Pandy, the Chicago pioneer who helped bring house music to mainstream audiences with the 1986 chart smash "Love Can't Turn Around." Blessed with a six-and-a-half-octave vocal range, Pandy had been ill for several months. His death was marked by local DJs and global stars like house godfather Jesse Saunders.
For full versions of the above stories and much more about S.F. music, check out All Shook Down, our music blog.