Punk Retrospective
3Mar/120

Feeling of Love / Mikal Cronin / White Fence / Ty Segall / G.A.M.H. / 3/2/2012

Posted by ElDorkoPunkRetro

Ty Segall @ GAMH 3/2/12Last night was pretty awesome...aside from the fact that the Great American Music Hall frowns on video recording. The Punk Retrospective crew walked in just as The Feeling of Love, a power-trio straight out of Metz,France, finished their first song. My chimichanga over at Los Panchos was worth missing one song for, but it would have been nice to catch their entire set. OK, I'm busted again...it's psych rock...but I'm ElDorkoPunkRetro...I like punk and I like retro music, like 60's garage psych, and I especially like this new wave of punk garage psych that's blooming across the world right now...and the flower that is San Francisco.

We hadn't been here (S.F.) since the big New Years' show...and weren't really sure what to expect from The Feeling of Love. We didn't know how often Ty Segall would be onstage, since he records with nearly everyone on the bill. It turned out great, with The Feeling of Love pulling us into an intense psych trance through the last few minutes of their final song, thus setting the tone for the rest of the night.

Since this group of kids record together so much and are each incredibly talented, it was hard for me to predict what order to expect them in. Mikal Cronin played next, with Ty taking the stage with him. Awesome set from this great songwriter. He writes clean, simple songs then adds in the layers. I once read a Henry Rollins quote where he talked about how lucky todays musicians are to have learned from the old punk and hardcore bands like Black Flag...to get an understanding of lull/intensity...I guess it's something all four of these acts have learned, because they're masters of it.

I didn't record any of Mikals' set on video because...it just wasn't possible at the time. I guess I prefer the Brick and Mortar, since they're more camera friendly, though the Great American Music Hall is beautiful and ornate. The entire dance floor bowed and swayed with the movement of the pit, so much so I thought it may collapse at some point. There were chunks of the balcony railing raining down on the stage at one point...it's good to see a new generation picking up and reviving a moribund rockn'roll.

White Fence was great, maybe not as awesome as the New Years' show, who knows...my eardrums were semi-protected behind some earplugs, because I ended up at the side of the pit right in front of the PA stack. I hadn't quite figured out how to adjust the plugs yet, so my White Fence experience was a bit muddy this time...worth seeing if you haven't. Yeah, it's got a surf edge to it and it's psychedelic, but it's also straight ahead punk rock, sometimes verging on hardcore.

The evening moved upward in intensity as Ty Segall, Mikal Cronin, Emily Rose and Charlie (Moonhearts) took the stage. Is this what Toad would sound like? Who knows...but it was great! Anyway, it was basically the same configuaration as Mikals' set with Charlie on guitar, too. I'd adjusted the earplugs to allow in some treble by this point, but my tinnitus is unforgiving of these small luxuries. The good news is that bands of this caliber somehow make me feel my hearing loss is acceptable, to a point. The hooks, intense pedal effects and heavy beats grew to a crescendo that left the makeshift barricade in tatters. Get out and see these acts before this scene gets co-opted by the man.

Oh...and I did get some video...enjoy:

[soundcloud url="http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/27704877" iframe="true" /]
[soundcloud url="http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/1661754" iframe="true" /]

[play-button:http://dl.dropbox.com/u/10295501/02%20Dissolve%20Me.mp3] The Feeling of Love - Dissolve Me Link source

2Jan/121

Thee Oh Sees / The Fresh & Onlys / White Fence / Wounded Lion – NYE – Brick & Mortar – San Francisco

Posted by ElDorkoPunkRetro

AlanForbesOK, I know...my definition of punk keeps expanding, which will probably make some of you out there either very uncomfortable or downright hateful...whatever. It's taken years for people to even begin to recognize the punk thread woven into the history of rock music from it's beginning...why would anyone stop to recognize it in the present? And why, of all places, in the psych garage revival movement? Ha...because that's one of the places it is right now (and has been since the 1960's)!

The Punk Retrospective crew decided we'd all go to San Francisco for New Year's 2012 and sleep in the van to save cash for the return trip home. Obviously, there's something worthwhile happening if you're willing to sleep in a van...the title of the post is a dead giveaway...for $15 a pop we all got to see Wounded Lion from Los Angeles, White Fence, The Fresh & Onlys and Thee Oh Sees while ringing in the New Year and tossing 2011 out like the fucking train wreck/pile of shit/trash heap it turned out to be.

2011 was a good year for rock music...for punk and other streams of independent subculture. And, though I'm still whining about the quality of my gear, it's great getting out and hearing so much live music. Living close to San Francisco has its perks...and when the opportunity to see four independent, original, groundbreaking bands in one conveniently located and hip venue presented itself, I thought, hell yeah, let's sleep in the fuckin' van and take back this fucking city!

DwyerThere was a lot of confusion outside regarding who it was, exactly, that was headlining this event. The Fresh and Onlys appeared on the bill first with White Fence and a special guest to be announced at a later date. When Thee Oh Sees were finally announced, well...a ranking game started that continued up to the New Year. White Fence could have topped this list as "Is Growing Faith" was on several Top 10 lists for 2011, but the Fresh and Onlys have been, and are becoming, even more respected in this scene. In the end I think everyone agreed it was Thee Oh Sees who should top the bill.

Before the show I met Petey Dammit and Alan Forbes, chatted them up a bit and bought a silk-screened copy of the amazing gig poster(shown above) Alan created. I think everyone was pleasantly surprised by Wounded Lion's performance...I swear they opened with a Black Flag cover and continued to impress.

This was our second trip to the Brick and Mortar Music Hall and our second sold out show. By the time White Fence started to play the bar was packed.

So, here's a portion of the White Fence performance I grabbed with my crappy camera. There's a familiarity to the sound, a sixties undercurrent with a touch of Stooges influence, but it's remarkably fresh sounding. Check it out:

I also captured about 14 minutes of Thee Oh Sees performance. As always, you should realize filmed shows are not a true representation of a bands' abilities. Seriously, if you have the chance to see any of the bands on this site, do! Anyway, John Dwyer is always amazing, no exception this night, either drummer alone would have been great, but watching the interaction between them was pretty intense. The audience loved every song and provided a constant swell for crowd surfing. Oh, here's Thee Oh Sees:

[play-button:http://dl.dropbox.com/u/16850984/PR/TheDreamRough.mp3] Thee Oh Sees - The Dream (Rough) Link source (via TheeOhSees)

[play-button:http://dl.dropbox.com/u/16850984/PR/CarrionCrawlerRough.mp3] Thee Oh Sees - Carrion Crawler (Rough) Link source (via TheeOhSees)

[play-button:http://dl.dropbox.com/u/16850984/PR/IWasDenied.mp3] Thee Oh Sees - I Was Denied Link source (via TheeOhSees)

[play-button:http://dl.dropbox.com/u/16850984/PR/TheFreshAndOnlys-Waterfall.mp3] The Fresh and Onlys - Waterfall Link source (via Stereogum)

[play-button:http://dl.dropbox.com/u/16850984/PR/WhiteFence-SwaggerVetsandDoubleMoon.mp3] White Fence - Swagger Vets and Double Moon Link source (via TheFader)

[play-button:http://dl.dropbox.com/u/16850984/PR/WoundedLion-CreaturesintheCave.mp3] Wounded Lion - Creatures in the Cave Link source (via Spinner)

[play-button:http://dl.dropbox.com/u/16850984/PR/WoundedLion-ImSad.mp3] Wounded Lion - I'm Sad Link source (via ElectricPandaMusic)