Saturday, August 30, 2008

Radiohead Played Outside Lands

Last week, we tempted you with a pic of Radiohead at Outside Lands, and indeed, we did have an up close and personal view of the gig. To say the crowd was massive would be an understatement, as it was most certainly the most packed day of the festival. Radiohead is a difficult band to review live, simply because their live show is so often spot-on amazing. They manage to take all the sonics that you would think are studio trickery and absolutely transform them into a live epic.

That being said, we can tell you that the Outside Lands set certainly deserves to be given a place of honor in the Radiohead legacy. For one, the band played a fantastic setlist combining a variety of old and new material. For another, the light show was completely appropriate for the large scale venue, and delivered a real sense of the concert, even to those way in the back. However, more than anything, the band simply delivered an awesome set. Despite some audio dropouts with the PA, the band maintained the utmost professionalism, and delivered the crowd a killer set of fantastic rock music. We likey.

As an added bonus, our friends over at Stranger Dance have posted soundboard quality mp3s of the show. Do we even need to tell you that it's worth the download?

Scissors For Lefty @ The Rickshaw Stop Tonight

If you can manage to drag yourself away from the Slow Food festivities, we heartily recommend checking out Scissors For Lefty at The Rickshaw Stop. The band not only puts on a fantastic live set, but also has been in the studio working on new material. Be there.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Broken Social Scene Played Outside Lands

Earlier in the week, we mentioned that we had managed to get up close and personal for one show at last weekends Outside Lands Festival. Well kids: here you are. Broken Social Scene played the Twin Peaks stage to a massive crowd for the second-to-last set on Sunday evening. The set was awesome, inspirational, and most of all fun.

Andrew Whiteman
The band was in full effect, and as close to a "full line-up" as we've seen since Feist opened for BSS at the Regency Grand. Andrew Whiteman was on guitar, Amy Milan came out for "Anthems For A Seventeen Year Old Girl", and the usual trio of Brendan Canning/Kevin Drew/Justin Peroff were present and accounted for. Never one to skimp on numbers, the band of course had numerous other members playing horns, guitars, and synths throughout the set. This included the first we had seen of Montreal-ite Liz Powell, who is also the lead singer for the band Land Of Talk.

Brendan Canning
Ostensibly this appearance, despite being part of a festival, was part of the tour for BSS' latest. There were a decent number of tracks from the most recent BSS Presents...Brendan Canning's Something For All Of Us..., although Canning seemed hesitant to really dominate the microphone. By contrast, it seemed to come rather naturally to Kevin Drew, as he fell into his usual bandleader role. Still, Canning's new material was a welcome addition, and played very well with the crowd.

Liz Powell
In addition to the newer material the band offered up a fair number of their older tracks, including a surprising "Pacific Theme" opener, and a leg-kicking rendition of "KC Accidental". Drew pulled "Pressure Kids" out from his Presents... disc, while Whiteman delivered a solid version of "Fire Eyed Boy", and Powell admirably covered the vocal duties on "7/4 Shoreline".

Kevin Drew
The band wrapped up the set with a cathartic rendition of "Ibi Dreams Of Pavement". They were joined on stage by former Pavement guitarist Spiral Stairs, and managed to induce the crowd to engage in wave after wave of enthusiastic screams. Really, this is one of those bands that you must see live in order to understand. We're consistently amazed every time we see them at how consistently they deliver a killer live show. Thankfully, this appearance at Outside Lands pulled in many, many, more people to the Broken Social Scene experience.

More photos over at the H.A.D. Archive
Pro-shot videos of most tracks are up on YouTube

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Gothamist Has A Gallery Of The David Byrne Bike Racks

Over at Gothamist, they have a complete gallery of the much-hyped "David Byrne bike racks". The above pic is one of many. Okay, we'll bite: they're cool, and utilitarian. Mr. Byrne: Maybe bring some to SF when you come to visit? also has a gmap of the rack's locations, if you're in a photo op kind of mood.

New Walkmen Video: In The New Year

Don't you wish you were a mainstay of indie rock reporting so that killer acts like The Walkmen would call you up to premier their new video? Yeah, well us too. But in the meantime, enjoy the fact that Pitchfork TV kindly allowed us to embed this video for In The New Year, and leave it at that.

Beck @ The Independent This Sunday, On-Sale In Twenty Minutes

Beck will be playing The Independent this Sunday, August 31st. Tickets go on sale at 5 PM today. That's 20 minutes from now. Password is "youthless". Good luck kids!

UPDATE: Shocker, sold out in two minutes. May, however, have only been a pre-sale. Details developing...

New Ryan Adams From Saturday's Fillmore Show

Image from the H.A.D. Archive

Wow. We're embarassed to say that with all the Outside Lands hype (among other things...keep an eye out), we neglected to check in on Ryan Adams' set at the Fillmore this past Saturday. Well, lo and behold, The Adams debuted 5 new songs, and there's video online of 3 of them. We imagine that a recording will be turning up on the Ryan Adams Archive sometime soon as well. In the meantime, head over to Stereogum and check out the new vids.

Second David Byrne Show On-Sale

Due to the success of the first show (and possibly the influx of yuppie ticket buyers who are willing to take the plunge for a show at Symphony Hall), a second date has been added to David Byrne's San Francisco Davies Hall appearances. The show (as previously mentioned) is in support of the new Byrne/Eno album, and features the "songs of David Byrne and Brian Eno". It takes place on Tuesday, October 7th, and tickets are on-sale now. While we cringe at the $90 ticket price, we are due to remind you that David Byrne's shows are among the most awesome. Ever.

mp3: David Byrne and Brian Eno - Strange Overtones

Sondre Lerche Played GAMH

Going to see Sondre Lerche is a bit like going to hang out with a good looking, charismatic friend, who also happens to have a fantastic voice and songwriting talent. Lerche's demeanor on stage is laid back and affable, and he clearly feels comfortable with his adoring fans. The amazing part is that for all of the heartthrob vibe that arises at his shows, Lerche is also such a genuine musical talent. He consistently delivers amazing songs, full of spirit and vigor, and he clearly loves to play them for his audience.

The set last night at Great American was similar to the set we covered in Boston last fall: Lerche played solo on both acoustic and electric guitars, covering a wide variety of material from his catalogue. The big difference here was that Lerche is on a tour to test out new material, where as last fall's set was a promotional tour for the film Dan In Real Life, for which Lerche provided the soundtrack.

Lerche did a great job with the new material, as well as the old. To be frank, his songs are so melodically accessible that many of the new songs felt like old favorites as soon as we had heard them. Some of the highlights of the set included a fantastic cover of Jimmy Cliff's "Many Rivers To Cross", and a new tune that was inspired by George Lazenby's performance in On Her Majesty's Secret Service.

Another key difference from the Boston set was the presence of an opening act: Sylvie Lewis. Lewis opened with an accessible set of folk tunes, but the real treat came when she joined Lerche on stage towards the end of the set. The two sang a trio of duets, including "Hell No"from the Dan In Real Life soundtrack, a stunning version of Lewis' song "New York", and the Lerche favorite "Modern Nature". Lerche has apparently gotten so used to singing the last track solo that he managed to sing over Lewis' part at one point! All in all, the addition of a female vocalist added a nice variety to Lerche's set, and gave some nice exposure to Lewis' songwriting.

Being that this was a tour of new material, Lerche opted to release a limited edition tour EP: The Polaroid Pool Party EP it features demos and new tracks on an autographed CD-R, as well as a San Francisco original Polaroid (ours is above). The tracks (while a tad raw in production) are classic Lerche, and no doubt will be a welcome treat to fans who head out to see him on this jaunt.

Many more photos at the H.A.D. Archive

New Kings Of Leon Video

The Kings Of Leon have released a video for the single off their forthcoming album Only By The Night, "Sex On Fire". From what we can make of the single, it sounds like the Kings are continuing in the harder rock vein that they started with last year's Because Of The Times. Moreover, from the looks of the video, it seems that they're adopting a harder rock image to go along with the new sound. We can't say that's a bad thing: the "sons of a southern preacher" look could only go so far, and we're always suckers for a chameleon.

While digging around for info about the new release, we also came up with a few further Kings tidbits: since Because Of The Times the band has released a number of iTunes exclusive tracks, including the single "Crawl", a split EP with Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, and a live EP. You've got a month until the new album drops, and we can assure you that these tracks will tide you over. The studio material is a clear indicator that the Kings are playing with their harder rock sound, while the live EP delivers the live goodness that the Kings seem to be able to deliver every time.

Kings Of Leon are at the Warfield on October 17th and 18th.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

She & Him Coming To Bimbo's

After the much-hyped Noise Pop appearance at GAMH, She & Him will be making the rounds to our fair city yet again, with an appearance at Bimbo's 365 Club on Monday, November 3rd. We're guessing that this appearance will see the band in a little bit more confident waters, since last time was their first ever public appearance. Plus, now the album's been out there for awhile, and you can sing along with Zoey to your heart's content. It'll be just like that scene at the end of Elf!

Tickets go on-sale this Thursday at 10 AM.

UPDATE: Special presale action here. Registration required.

New Features Album On The Way

We've had a bit of the thing for The Features ever since we saw them open for The Kings Of Leon a few years back at Slim's. Well, we were psyched to see that the band has a new record on the way (double gateway vinyl no less!), and a new mp3 up on their web site! The track, "GMF", is the same organ-infused rock that The Features have always given us, but with a bit more of a modern bent. Where the band's old tracks were more straight-ahead rock and roll, this track manages to ebb and flow a bit more, letting you really enjoy the rock, when they decide to give it to you. Check it out for yourself. Some Kind Of Salvation drops on September 30th.

mp3: The Features - GMF (click through, email required)

Outside Lands: Some Musical Moments

While we weren't exactly able to get super-close for most of the Outside Lands shows, we did manage to get a few shots that we thought you might enjoy. Check out some shots below, and keep an eye out: we were lucky enough to get up close for one of the gigs, and we got some great shots! You'll have to check back though, we're not going to ruin the surprise...

Manu Chao

Charlie Walker

Cold War Kids

Jeff Tweedy


Monday, August 25, 2008

Outside Lands: Good Music Is Popular Again

This past weekend, we here at H.A.D. had the good fortune to attend the Outside Lands Festival in Golden Gate Park. While we tend to be skeptics on the festival front, we decided to go into this one with an open mind. After all, it was the birth of a truly monumentous San Francisco music festival. Moreover, the selection of bands was at once confounding and exciting: we didn't really know what to expect. In the end, we're glad we took it on, because it ended up being quite a treat. Moreover, it made us come to a stunning realization: Good music is popular again.

The first thing that catches one's eye about Outside Lands is the decision to hold it in Golden Gate Park. The decision is at once a brilliant and questionable one, as there are many challenges to be faced in using one of the city's most notable landmarks as a concert venue. Specifically, taking a park that is highly populated by the homeless, often prone to fog banks, and has limited access seems a bit questionable. However, the festival organizers managed to fall on the good side of the fence: the weather was totally acceptable (even fabulous at times), the homeless population didn't appear to cause any trouble, and the location in the park was a beautiful spot to enjoy some music. Perhaps the only sore spot was a dearth of MUNI busses, but it's obvious enough (and truly tragic) that that issue is not specific to the festival.

In choosing to host the festival in San Francisco, the Outside Lands promoters were entering a community that is heavily oriented around local identity. Chains are few and far between in the city, and local sourcing of jobs, agriculture and businesses is a popular local issue. So it was with great insight that the promoters managed to rope in local businesses to participate in the festival's catering and amenties. Sure, there was your usual festival Heineken and fries, but there were also a true variety of San Francisco originals. Local pizza, fish and chips, beer, wines, and sausages, all graced the festival's paths. It was truly awesome to be able to have a real selection of food options, and know that you weren't just eating fried nastiness. Kudos to whomever thought up this brainchild: local sourcing is something that all festivals should really consider.

The combination of fantastic location and amenities served to deliver the one thing that can really make or break a festival: a truly happy crowd. There seemed to be a generally positive vibe in the air at all times. Even when trying to get through massive crowds, or move from one stage to the next, everyone was good natured. There were plenty of toilets, plenty of event staff on hand, and a general sense of common well being. At one point we overheard someone say "Look at all these faces coming towards us, they're all smiling, everyone's having fun!". That's not something that you get for free. It's the mark of a level of organization and planning that somehow manages to get 50,000 people into an enclosed space and enjoy that which is truly the focus: the music.

The artist selection at Outside Lands at first caught us a bit off guard: the roster seemed to be all over the map, and not really catering to any one specific niche. However, we soon realized that this confusion was less a result of anything of substance, and more rooted in the fact that we've been highly conditioned by festivals that cater to niche markets: jam festivals, indie festivals, alternative festivals, etc. In fact, what Outside Lands managed to do was transcend these niche markets, and create one of the most diverse festival crowds we've ever seen. Moreover, it brought upon us a revelation that we may now be at the apex of a musical arc that has been building for quite a while.

We witnessed a selection of musicians, in a wide range of genres, who all delivered the best their genre could offer. There was indie rock, mainstream rock, classic rock, soul, hip hop, jam bands and more. What's more, there wasn't just great music in each, but there were tons and tons of people watching. It wasn't like you had to stretch to get a crowd for these bands: every stage was packed with people excited to see both emerging and established artists. There were no undervalued indie acts with absent crowds, and there were no mainstream acts that drove away the skeptics en masse. It was difficult not to recall the festivals of the sixties, when the acts that participated were not just hugely popular, but musically and culturally relevant as well. On Sunday, as we sat among the tens of thousands of people watching Wilco, it dawned on us that a precedent unrealized for years was once again true: Good music is popular again.

H.A.D. will be featuring some more highlights from Outside Lands shows over the coming week. Stay tuned!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Outside Lands Begins Tonight

Well, if you've been waiting for the city's most massive concert event of the year, it looks like you're in luck. The Outside Lands Festival begins in Golden Gate Park this evening at five. You can check out the schedule here, and grab tickets here. As for anything else, well, standard festival common sense applies. Looks like the weather is supposed to be great (upper 80's in the city tomorrow?!?!), so bring sun block and enjoy!

UPDATE: If you can't make it to the fest, you can still stream the live performances here. Woot!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Elton John: The Complete Thom Bell Sessions

If Sacred Songs was Daryl Hall's attempt to delve into his more experimental side, then Elton John's 1977 recording sessions with Thom Bell were the complete opposite. While it may seem counter intuitive for an artist so synonymous with commercial success, at the end of the 70's John's music had become absent from the mainstream.

John enlisted Bell as producer in response to the growing trend in disco and dance music. Bell served both to give the tracks and authentic R&B feel, and provide a writing team for 5 out of the 6 songs of new material (the sixth, "Shine On Through", was written by John and would resurface a year later on A Single Man).

Similar to Hall's plight, John's record company delayed release of the record, not seeing fit to release any tracks until 1979. When they finally did allow release, it was a three track EP, which spawned one top ten hit, "Mama Can't Buy You Love". By 1989, with the new compact disc market in full swing, MCA decided that it would be a prudent time to release the material, and thus issued The Complete Thom Bell Sessions, featuring all 6 tracks.

The album, which clocks in at just over half an hour, plays more like an EP than an album. It is also quickly apparent that John is not leading the creative effort. The singer/songwriter vibe which populates so many of his own works is conspicuously absent, as is the typical verse/chorus structure. Instead, the listener gets an earful of Elton taking on a true R&B vibe to his voice, and sharing the stage with backup vocals from the Spinners, and extended dance mix song structures.

While the record (as was intended) is firmly planted in the dance music of the late seventies, it holds some fantastic songwriting and thoroughly enjoyable performances. John seems relaxed, and naturally falls into the disco groove. Moreover, for all the cheesiness, there's also some truly great instrumental arranging and string sections that will grab you if you have even the slightest in nostalgia for the late 70's.

After the journey from 1977, to 1979, to 1989, one might think that such a niche market album might have had its fifteen minutes of fame. However, in 2003 a mild remix of the album track "Are You Ready For Love" was released on 12" vinyl, and became a smash hit in the UK. Retro to the max, kids. Check the videos (old and new) below.

The New U2 Reissues

So, no doubt you've seen the press, blogs, and whatever else about the new U2 reissues. If not, a quick sum up: on the heels of the definitive remastered Joshua Tree, the band decided to remaster their first 3 studio albums, plus the live disc Under A Blood Red Sky. Each is a "definitive edition", with a second disc of live and bonus tracks, and in the case of the live disc, a DVD of the performance.

At first, we here at H.A.D. had been hesitant to pick up these releases, as the press kind of reeked of "record company bid for money" vibe. Moreover, most of the material on the second discs we already had in some form, whether it be bootleg or mp3. However, today we decided to pull the trigger, and for a few (we think) pretty solid reasons. Here's a rundown:

  1. The Edge was involved in the remastering from the original tapes. This means that the quality will a) be high, and b) has band buy-in, rather than record-company decision making.
  2. The second disc. Yes, we already have a lot of this material, but a lot of it is shoddy quality, sourced from radio, tape cassette, or vinyl. Having it remastered in one place in high fidelity is a nice upgrade.
  3. The material. This is seminal U2. We've been a bit jaded after the band's heavy exposure of late, but this is the foundation that U2's greatness is built upon. It's nice to revisit.
  4. Packaging. We admit it, we're a sucker for nice packaging. These records were all originally issued in the 80's era generic Island Records format. To have original album art is really nice.
  5. The video. This is the first and only DVD release of Under A Blood Red Sky, and it has added bonus tracks. The video is source material of the band totally on the brink of complete stardom. If you haven't seen it, (or even if you have), it's fantastic.
So there you have it: good rationalization for going and dropping close to $100 on U2 reissues. You can buy it where you want, but if you get the first three packaged together at Amazon, it's a hair cheaper and you get a free poster. Also of note, the remastered albums are also available in single disc versions.

We've Joined The Twitter Fray

H.A.D. has joined the Twitter fray - so if that's your thing, click here to follow us and get on-the-spot updates and activities from your favorite SF music blog!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

RIP LeRoi Moore

We're sad to throw it out there, but Dave Matthews Band's resident horn player LeRoi Moore has passed away in Los Angeles, as a result of complications from an ATV accident. The band has an official statement up, and suffice it to say, everyone is a bit shocked. In the meantime, it's looking like Bela Fleck bandmember Jeff Coffin is filling in. While their output has drifted from our tastes in the past few years, DMB have created some fantastic records, and Moore will be sorely missed.

New Oasis Vid - "Shock The Lightning"

Want to snag a view into some psychedelic goodness of Oasis' latest single from their upcoming Dig Out Your Soul? Go here to check the new video for "Shock The Lightning". Thanks to Stereogum for the tip.

Coldplay Offers Free Track

Coldplay has decided to nice it up and offer (in exchange for your email address) a free track on their website. The just-over-one-minute ditty is entitled "Death Will Never Conquer" (which seems odd, because in the end doesn't conquer?), and serves as a sort of "Her Majesty" for Viva La Vida. For all our snarkiness, it's a nice little track, and it's free. We recommend it. Highly.

mp3: Coldplay - Death Will Never Conquer (Click through, email required)

Stream The New Verve

It's been eleven years, some solo albums, and a fair amount of touring, but The Verve have finally gotten together a follow up to 1997's Urban Hymns. Forth (very clever guys, very.) drops next Tuesday on August 26th, but you can stream it now (one week only!) on the band's myspace page.

The disc (of course) is heavily driven by Richard Ashcroft's distinctive rough crooner vibe, but also seems to derive a bit more from guitar atmospherics than Urban Hymns did. The effect is quite striking, and thankfully, a bit less morose than Hymns. But don't take our word for it...

Stream: The Verve - Forth

Monday, August 18, 2008

New Byrne/Eno Available Now

The new Brian Eno & David Byrne collaboration Everything That Happens Will Happen Today is now available for download. The pair is offering up the record in 3 separate formats, including digital-only, digital plus CD, and special packaging (which includes 4 bonus tracks). We were doubly excited to see that the album art is designed by Stefan Sagmeister, whose design book Things I Have Learned In My Life So Far we've been enjoying immensely over the past couple of months. On that note, we're heading over to download the record. You should do the same - happy Monday!

UPDATE: Listening (and loving it) now, but more importantly: browsing the album art. This is how e-releases should be done, people. Non-DRMed, with awesome art and high quality sound files. Not that we should be surprised, but kudos to Byrne and Eno for getting it right...

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Two Months Later: Viva La Vida

Well, here we are in mid-August, and Coldplay's Brian Eno-produced latest, Viva La Vida, has had a bit of time to simmer in our musical stove. While our initial reaction was one of slightly-better-than-X and Y skepticism, we have to admit that this one is truly a grower.

At first glance, many of the tracks seem to make over-use of Coldplay's trademark repeating piano lines (see: "Clocks"), and Chris Martin's dramatic vocals. The more one listens however, the more it becomes clear that Coldplay has passed through (and benefitted from) Brian Eno's filter. The songs repeated hooks have become more percussive and textural, and less melodic in nature. They now drive the songs rather than defining them. Moreover, Martin's vocals have taken on a raw quality that removes some of the croony aspect to his delivery.

Viva La Vida was an eagerly anticpated release, and justifiably so: after the underwhelming delivery of X and Y, many were eager for Coldplay to return to their old selves. While the album doesn't exactly do that, it does put the band in a new direction that is definitely welcome. With a bit of listening, Viva La Vida makes you realize that maybe you weren't as anxious for the old Coldplay as you had thought, and that the new one is pretty damn good.

mp3: Coldplay - Strawberry Swing

Deerhunter On-Sale This Sunday

We just got news that the Deerhunter show at GAMH on November 24th that we mentioned previously goes on sale this Sunday at 10 AM. Just thoughtcha might like to know, natch.

New Oasis Track For Your Delight

We here at H.A.D. have been pretty partial to Oasis' recent (and we think criminally underrated) albums: Don't Believe The Truth and Heathen Chemistry were both killer efforts that demonstrated the band's new found collaborative focus, and escaped something of a rut for the band's sound. In 2006, we enjoyed catching the documentary Lord Don't Slow Me Down in a sneak preview at the Embarcadero Center, but since then we haven't heard much from the band.

Well, that's all about to change: In addition to a fall tour, the band has a new record on the way, Dig Out Your Soul. Last week, there was some noise as a Chemical Brothers remix of one track was leaked. Well now the actual track has been leaked, and we like what we hear. "Falling Down" is a hazy, psychedlic jam that manages to pack a lot of punch while at the same time remaining completely subversive and chill. Yes, we're looking forward to hearing the rest. Indeed.

mp3: Oasis - Falling Down

Kings Of Leon Presale @ 10 AM

Well, looks like you're going to have to choose between the Kings and the Weez: the Kings of Leon show at The Warfield on October 18th also goes on presale at 10 AM this morning. Also, with the presale news comes the info on a new album by the Kings: Only By The Night. We're excited, to say the least. Click here for presale, the password is "KINGS".

Weezer Presale This Morning @ 10 AM

Despite our skepticism at The Weez's recent conduct and musical output, we figured this was worth a mention: the band will be playing a show at San Jose State on October 13th, and there's a presale starting at 10 AM this morning. Sure, there's no Matt Sharp, and the last few albums have has their weaknesses, but don't you still want to hear Rivers thrash on a few tunes live? You can grab tickets here, the password is "beans".

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Have Yerself Some Rare Ryan Adams

We here at H.A.D. are pretty big Ryan Adams fetishists, so we're always a tad surprised to discover officially released tracks that we missed. That being said: we're also always happy, given that Adams' B-Side output tends to be unmatchable. So, we were pretty excited this afternoon to discover that RA has posted a track from the Japanese edition of Love Is Hell (above) for your listening consumption on myspace. "Gimme Sunshine" is pure classic Adams: melodic, locomotive, and honey-sweet. Enjoy.

Ryan Adams will be at the FIllmore August 23rd.

Stream: Ryan Adams - Gimme Sunshine

Daryl Hall: Sacred Songs

Okay, let's get this out of the way to start with: If you despise Hall and Oates, a Daryl Hall solo album isn't going to change your whole world view. The singer's voice and phrasing are so distinctive that they're unmistakeable in any form. What it does do is offer a pretty solid insight into the fact that Hall was not just all "Rock And Soul" in the late seventies, and that if the record companies hadn't gotten their way, Hall's career might have taken a noticeably different turn.

Sacred Songs was supposed to be released in 1977. Produced and conceived with Robert Fripp (yes, that Robert Fripp), the record was intended to be a vehicle for Hall to explore other facets of his musicality. Unfortunately, the record company didn't see it that way, and so the project was shelved until 1980, when it was a tad past its prime.

Despite the fact that the album missed commercial marks, it's a fascinating document of Hall and Fripp's collaboration, as well as what happens to Hall in a notably more experimental musical frame of mind. His distinctive vocals are still firmly in place, but Fripp's guitar lines challenge his ability to defer to simply accessible melodies, and as such his voice takes on a slightly more edgy, and less sacharine, tone. From the Fripp side of things, it's nice to hear his guitar work complimenting and challenging Hall. The album is also notable as being the first recorded appearance of Fripp's use of frippertronics.

When listening to the record, it's tough to take it out of context: the late seventies vibe is strong in these tracks, and at times is overwhelming. Still, if the listener can transcend some of the dated production value, the recordings present a great deal of insight into what might have happened for two musicians had they taken a slightly different path.

mp3: Daryl Hall - Survive Yousendit, click through

Takka Takka: Migration

One of the nice things about having an eMusic subscription is that it lets you explore musical avenues that might not otherwise be taken. Such was the case for us with Takka Takka's latest, Migration. The disc is from a Brooklyn band who have been around since 2004, and apparently (at least according to wikipedia) got their first taste of fame opening for Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. This association (along with the fact that they're from Brooklyn) has left many reviews actively trying to find Takka Takka's place amongst the neu-Brooklyn elite. Right.

All trends aside, Migration holds up where it's most important for a record. It has a solid dose of experimentation, and a sonic flavor that is unique enough to create real auditory interest. Moreover, it manages to temper the sonic artistry with melodies that are appealing and memorable with lyrics that are abstract and open to interpretation. To our ears it emotes the same vague space as The Sea and Cake, who, as you know, are a house favorite here at H.A.D. While these guys don't have any West Coast dates booked at the moment, we can assure you that it's worth your time to check out the record in the meantime.

mp3: Takka Takka - One Foot In The Well (Yousendit, Click Through)

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Deerhunter Coming To GAMH

We here at H.A.D. had been a tad concerned that the only opportunity to see Deerhunter in the Bay Area this year might be by buying a ticket to their slot opening for Nine Inch Nails at Oracle Arena. Thankfully, such is not the case, and the band will be gracing the GAMH with their presence on Monday November 24th. By all accounts, the Deerhunter live experience is not to be missed. Details of tickets forthcoming...

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Kings Of Leon Returning To The Warfield

This October the Kings Of Leon will be returning to San Francisco for two nights, October 17th and 18th, at The Warfield. They're sharing the bill with The Stills and We Are Scientists, so we're guessing this may be some sort of co-headlining deal. The Kings put on a fantastic live show and it's absolutely worth putting in an appearance... No details on tickets as of yet.

David Byrne Davies Pre-Sale Today @ 10 AM

Earlier this week we mentioned David Byrne's upcoming Bay Area shows had yet to go on-sale. Well, now the time has come: This morning at 10 AM there will be a pre-sale for the Davies Symphony Hall Show. You can get to the pre-sale here - the password is "eno". Enjoy.