6. Simian Mobile Disco @ Mezzanine, Saturday, Dec. 1
Ever since Jas Shaw and James Ford split off from indie-pop outfit Simian circa 2006 to form Simian Mobile Disco, a cheeky sensibility has always underpinned the duo's slinky electro. On 2009's Temporary Pleasure, SMD mocked rich-kid opulence with ... More >>
Sept. 1, 2012
Fox Theater, Oakland
Better than: Seeing Animal Collective (seriously -- deal with it).
If you (like I) missed the memo, Yeasayer has apparently become a divisive act. After 2010's Odd Blood brought the experimental Brooklynites widespread acclaim, last month's ... More >>
"10th Anniversary Tribute Show To Joe Strummer"
Chris von Sneidern
Saturday, Aug. 25, 2012
Bottom of the Hill
Better than: Hearing Maroon 5 attempt "Should I Stay or Should I Go."
Several men clad in sleeveless denim vests pack a dimly lit club on Saturday night. ... More >>
Caveman's first Outside Lands set -- Sunday, 2:50 p.m. at the Panhandle stage -- has arguably been inevitable. Sure, maybe it hasn't always felt that way for the band. Last year, the members of Caveman sweated out festival favorite status at CMJ 2011. They put the time and effort in to self-release ... More >>
There's a surprise awaiting anyone checking out the Friday night lineup at Outside Lands. Yes, Beck performs before normal people eat dinner, but arguably that stage's Beck-Foo Fighters-Neil Young progression is logical. And yes, Justice will close the night elsewhere, but everyone knows they'll mak ... More >>
It's a little past the halfway point of 2012, but mid-July still seems like a good time to round up the albums that came out this year and simply failed to meet our expectations. Some of those expectations were admittedly (and deservedly) sky-high -- leading to decent records that still felt like a ... More >>
Preservation Hall Jazz Band
The Stone Foxes
July 1, 2012
Stern Grove Festival
Better than: An afternoon listening to the drum circle in Dolores Park
The Stern Grove Music Festival is celebrating its 75th year, and it's hard to imagine much has changed in 2012. If you're a diehard music fan -- some ... More >>
Thursday, June 7, 2012
Better than: A Facebook party featuring anyone.
Tanlines percussionist Jesse Cohen's been slinging Internet-based one-liners all night. He introduces new music as "not even on Rdio, what they call a 'net exclusive.'" He under ... More >>
May 9, 2012
Better than: Listening to Bradford Cox perform "My Sharona," or your
Ghetto Cross bootlegs.
1. "Can we borrow a bass?" 2. "This is our last song." 3. "I'm sorry we only learned eight. Next time we'll learn more. Thanks."
It's a stand ... More >>
Father John Misty
Har Mar Superstar
Saturday, May 5, 2012
Bottom of the Hill
Better than: Five bearded dudes in flannel lulling an audience to sleep in perfect harmony.
Father John Misty has two songs left to play. But Josh Tillman (or J. Tillman, or "the former drummer of Fleet Foxes ... More >>
Walk The Moon
March 20, 2012
Better than: What you'd expect from a band you thought had three singles.
A band like the Kaiser Chiefs has it rough. Songs like "Oh My God" and "I Predict A Riot" are nearly eight years old now. When this group -- a rock act distinc ... More >>
Christopher VictorioAtlas Sound's Bradford Cox at Bimbo's on Saturday.
Feb. 25, 2012
Bimbo's 365 Club
Better than: Honestly, I've never seen anything like this.
Tonight, and likely at all other Atlas Sound sets, some c ... More >>
Sad Baby Wolf
Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012
Bottom of the Hill / Noise Pop 20th Anniversary Opening Night
Better than: Seeing The Hold Steady.
Ask a local, or a bring a notebook with you to a show, and they'll tell you: Noise Pop is as much about discovering new music as it is about venue-hopp ... More >>
Nick Waterhouse (w/ The Tarots)
Jan. 21, 2012
Better than: Some modern-day Lawrence Welk incarnation.
Being an MC is hard. You can be criticized for one of the most abstract concepts in music -- your "flow" -- if it strikes people as odd or different. Your lyric ... More >>
Jan. 6, 2012
Great American Music Hall
Better than: Pyramid or Pyramiddd.
Look, we all get it. With a name like Starfucker, it's hard to be taken seriously.
Nearly any time the band is mentioned, the absurdity of its name comes up. Critics cite it as a reason wh ... More >>
Tennis at Bottom of the Hill on Saturday night.
Dec. 10, 2011
Bottom of the Hill
Better than: Watching a documentary on '60s music.
"This is a new one, it's called 'Origins.'"
Alaina Moore uttered this after the halfway point of Tennis' 14-song set a ... More >>
Matt SmithThe National at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium on Saturday night.
Dec. 3, 2011
Bill Graham Civic Auditorium
Better than: Seeing any other American rock band.
"Anyone got extras? [To his partner] Hey, whatcha got?"
"Just a hard dick and some bub ... More >>