Keeping Score–Annihilation & Arca

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At the beginning of quarantine, I found myself gravitating towards the juicy, campy, and albeit oftentimes problematic movies of 50s sci-fi. They’re predictable — something mysterious happens, 40 minutes of dialogue, and then 15 minutes of kitschy special effects and action. It’s a digestible 70 minutes of escapism. (If I zone out, I’m probably thinking about the poster from The Wasp Woman (1959)). When it comes to their sounds and scores though, many lack the sort of experimental and imaginativeness that make later sci-fi soundtracks some of my favorite to revisit. At their best, these scores can shape the world of the movie by blending the familiar into something atmospheric, dark, and a little experimental. 

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Digging Through the Crate: Mentally I’m in the Court of the Crimson King

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Ah yes. It’s 9pm. Time to put on a record. Discipline by King Crimson greets me with it’s bright red cover and that thing in the middle of it. “What a great album,” I think to myself as I set it up on my turntable. This is an impeccable album: A perfect mix of slower relaxing songs and chaotic progressive rock. My favorite track off this album is “Indiscipline.” As Adrian Belew repeats (haha, pun intended) “I repeat myself when under stress,” numerous times, I can’t help but laugh because of how relatable it is. Like yes, I too am under stress right now Adrian. Thela Hun Ginjeet is another gem off of this album. Overall, it’s fire and everybody should become a King Crimson fan.

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James Blake Gives a Dynamic Performance at The Anthem

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BY VISHAL NYAYAPATHI// On Thursday, February 21st, James Blake performed at The Anthem on the North American leg of his Assume Form tour. 

Following the dreamy, monotone opening set by Khushie, Blake arrived on stage just after 9 o’clock. Accompanied by two additional band members (one of whom operated a stunning modular synth rack) and the familiar fluttering piano riffs of the title track from his latest album Assume Form, Blake began what would be a mind-blowing, genre-defying performance. As a panel of white, orange and red lights danced behind him, Blake seamlessly flowed between sonic motifs of trap, soul, and bass music.

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James Bay at The Anthem, 3/8

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BY JULIA SMITH// I heard James Bay’s music for the first time four years ago at a quintessentially SoCal music festival called Weenie Roast, hosted by KROQ at the Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre (may she rest in peace). During a festival that was part indie/alternative/flower crown girl haven, and debatably part Cinco de Mayo celebration, Angelinos and Orange County natives baked under the sun in enthusiastic throngs to hear radio’s most-played alternative artists. James Bay, a fresh new face on the scene, played early in the day at the smaller stage – the perfect venue for this singer/songwriter. Recalling that performance, the first word that comes to mind is honest.

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Deerhoof Headline Union Stage This Sunday with Support by Speedy Ortiz & Pygmy Lush

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BY VICTORIA MIDDLETON// San Francisco indie rock band Deerhoof says they have been “simultaneously living in two worlds“; and you are too.

Deerhoof has been releasing music since the 90s, back when indie rock was ~indie rock~. Beginning within the realm of noise punk, Deerhoof evolved to be known for a sweet, poppier sound throughout the early 2000s, although the group’s experimental spirit never faltered. Their most recent album drew it’s inspirational from the massive rip in the space-time continuum commonly known as the Trump era. Deerhoof has described the uncanny events of this age as the result of living in two worlds as once, a world hurtling toward chaos and the one that fights against it. Mountain Moves celebrates the latter.  What’s more punk rock than that?

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