by Brad Roberts

This is shaping up to be a pretty great week and the news of the neat line up at FYF Festival, especially in the supporting bands category, makes me anxious for a whole summer full of fantastic shows. I'm still so high from the Maximo Park show at The Troubadour last Friday night, that all I can think of is getting out to more shows this week.

I've become very fond of the Portland band, Mimicking Birds (above), from their two recent shows at The Satellite, coming down from the northwest twice to accompany The Parson Red Heads on their return trips to town in November last year and March this year. Nate Lacy's Mimicking Birds was originally a solo bedroom project that was noticed and promoted by signing with Glacial Pace Recordings, releasing a quietly impressive album of lyrical folk tunes in 2010 that he recorded mostly himself. That album only hinted at what he could do with a band and last week's release of Eons, fulfills the promise of what had bowled me over when I saw them those two times. Gorgeous combinations of guitar and piano, are lushly orchestrated and overlayed by Nate's flexible vocals on his lyric-heavy songs. It's a beautiful and unusual album that continues to grow on me. As soon as I heard they were heading back to town to promote the new album, I bought a ticket.

The other show I bought a ticket for was an impulse buy to attend a concert by Jefferson Starship at the Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills on Friday night. I've more or less avoided going to see the remnants of sixties bands since I got back to music almost ten years ago, but this was too tempting. Certain members of the band usually appear at their shows nowadays including founding members Paul Kantner and David Freiberg, with Cathy Richardson as a replacement for the retired Grace Slick. Anyway I'm going to indulge myself and see what this is all about. I'm looking forward to hearing familiar songs performed live again. It will be my ninth time seeing a configuration of Jefferson Airplane/Starship (with a 38 year gap).

I'm sorry I'm missing this other Friday show, because the album Emblems was one of the first CD's I got when I rediscovered music in 2005 and it has remained a touchstone album for me all these years later. I'd stumbled across a music video of Matt Pond PA for the song "Closest" and it really drew me into the whole world of musicians preparing to get together to play. It peaked my interest so much that I decided to go out and try to find this community where people like this existed. Then I found Silver Lake. They play at The Roxy on Friday with a 10th Anniversary Celebration Tour commemorating  the release of Emblems in 2004 and since I've now seen this band five times, I feel guilty about missing this most important show. But congratulations to Matt Pond anyway.

Monday, May 19

- Air Life, Alex Lilly, Anderson Paak, Le J Collective, Alto @ The Satellite

- In The Valley Below, The Mercy Beat, StaG, Bikos @ The Echo

- Jimmy Welsh, Nikhil D'Souza @ Hotel Cafe

- "School Night!" w/ Phil Beaudreau and Dawaun Parker, The Flavr Blue, Gub Sport, Wild Party @ Bardot

- An Evening with Lykke Li @ The Theatre at Ace Hotel

- The Acetates, Steps Of Doe, Adam Henry, Diamonds and Rust @ Silver Lake Lounge

- Jarell Perry, Thurz, Chris Batson, Lincoln Jesser @ Bootleg HiFi

- Us The Duo @ The Troubadour

- Jody Porter, The Brothers Zmed, The Pocket Rockets, The Crazy Brave @ The Viper Room

- James Blunt @ The Belasco Theatre

- Send Machines, Skin & Bones @ Harvard & Stone


The week begins with a busy night of free residency choices like Air Life (at right) at The Satellite with Alex Lilly and Anderson Paak on the bill, and In The Valley Below with another favorite of mine, Bikos, at The Echo, also with The Mercy Beat and StaG. Or for $10. you can catch a nice show over in West Hollywood at The Viper Room with the Jody Porter residency, with The Brothers Zmed and The Pocket Rockets.

Tuesday, May 20

- Banta, Hobart W. Fink, Alina Cutrono, Winter, Fellow Bohemian, J Dende + more @ The Satellite

- Their/They're/There, Creative Adult, The Down House @ The Echo

- Hozier @ The Troubadour

- Eliza Rickman, Roses and Revolution, Anthonie Tonnon @ Hotel Cafe

- Future People, The Trims, Fairchild, Los Angelics, Memoir @ Silver Lake Lounge

- The Dharma Bums, Blood Candy, Psychic Love @ Harvard & Stone


The Beyonce tribute at The Satellite sounds like fun (though I'd avoid the elevator!) starring an impressive bill of heavyweights like Banta, Hobart W. Fink, Alina Cutrono, Winter (at right), Fellow Bohemian and more. The Dharma Bums are residing at Harvard & Stone every Tuesday and this week  are bringing Blood Candy and Psychic Love with them.

Wednesday, May 21

- Dead Sara, Giver, Rival Tides @ The Satellite

- Wake Owl, Mimicking Birds @ The Echo

- Melpo Mene, Midnight Faces, Sego @ Bootleg Bar

- Gabrielle Aplin w/ Mree, Thomas Dybdah, Alex Desen, Western Haunts @ Hotel Cafe

- "Desert Nights" w/ Tom Brosseau, Sangster, Keis Gruen @ The Standard

- Band Of Skulls (Acoustic) @ The Masonic Lodge at Hollywood Forever Cemetery

- Nickel Creek, The Secret Sisters @ The Wiltern

- Us The Duo @ The Troubadour


As I said above, I'm heading off to the Wake Owl (at right) and Mimicking Birds evening at The Echo. I spent some time listening to the Wake Owl album, The Private World of Paradise,  in preparation and found an album of introspective folk/pop that is quirky and captivating so I look forward to seeing both bands on this bill. Another chance for me to recommend Melpo Mene, recent transplants from Sweden to our fair city, as they play a show at Bootleg Bar. Blind Date L.A. showcases this show and others for the benefit of new and unheard bands in the local area to give them exposure. Also on tonight's bill are Midnight Faces and Sego.

 Thursday, May 22

- The Unlikely Candidates @ The Satellite

- XXYYXX, Jessy Lanza, Saint Pepsi @ Echoplex

- Nathaniel Rateliff, The Wild Reeds, Carly Ritter @ The Echo

- Hellogoodbye, Vacationer, Wild Party @ The Troubadour

- Of Eden, Elaine Faye & The Big Bang, 22 Kings, Skypilot @ Hotel Cafe

- Dry River Yacht Club, The Cherry Bluestorms, Fairy Bones, Dirty Lingo @ Silver Lake Lounge

- Holy Fuck, James Supercave, Wunder Wunder @ The Roxy

- French Vanilla, Shit Giver, Coup Pigeons @ The Smell


Hump day features a good show at The Echo with Nathaniel Rateliff on a U.S. tour and local alt/country darlings, The Wild Reeds, but I'm going to take advantage of a night off.

Friday, May 23

- Papercuts, Line & Circle, Young Hunting @ The Satellite

- Superhumanoids, Cardiknox @ Echoplex

- Howlin'' Rain, Buffalo Killers, Elisa Randazzo @ The Echo

- Steve Taylor Band, Mike Sempert Record Release Show, Two Sheds, We Are The West @ El Cid

- Jefferson Starship, Suburban Skies @ Saban Theatre

- Matt Pond PA - Emblems 10 Year Anniversary, The Lighthouse and The Whaler @ The Roxy

- Hidden Amongst Us, The Black Lantern, Sidewave, Jesse Aycock, Mason Prophet @ Silver Lake Lounge

- PLaNETS, Jail Weddings, Magic Wands, Gareway Drugs @ The Troubadour

- Jack Tempchin, Loafer's Glory @ McCabe's

- The Parlour Suite, Taylor Greenwood, Hayley Solano, Fire At Sea, Cassandra Violet @ Hotel Cafe


You'll have to allow me my self-indulgence here to say I'm excited about seeing Jefferson Starship at Saban Theatre. I know...It may be a far cry from the original Jefferson Airplane. but I figure if I'm still here and any of them are still here...well, let's just call it destiny. I owe it to the Jefferson Airplane as my favorite band of yore, and to me as a lifelong devoted fan. I never did stop playing their albums and still find them the most experimental, daring and adventurous band of that era. Would love to hear something from Blows Against The Empire.

It's causing me to miss Matt Pond PA and their - Emblems 10 Year Anniversary show at The Roxy, with The Lighthouse and The Whaler, and it's a night filled with other great shows too. Papercuts, Line & Circle and Young Hunting are at The Satellite and Jack Tempchin at McCabe's and PLaNETS and Jail Weddings at The Troubadour, Superhumanoids at Echoplex, Steve Taylor Band headlines the Mike Sempert Record Release Show, Two Sheds and We Are The West at El Cid.

Saturday, May 24

- BUSted! True Stories About Getting Around LA by People Who Don't Drive @ Stories Books and Cafe

- Floor, Thrones, Last Days of Ancient Sunlight @ The Satellite

- The Intelligence, Protomartyr, LAMPS @ Bootleg HiFi

- Alyeska (acoustic), Therapy Session (acoustic), Joe Fraley, Brett Mondie Music @ Lot 1

- William Fitzsimmons, Leif Vollebekk @ The Troubadour

- Hello Echo, Young Creatures, David Tanklefsky @ El Cid

- DADAISMUS: "Auditory Odyssey" w/ The Centemeters, L.A. Drones, Circuitry & Poetry, Anna Homler, Mecca Vazie Andrews, John Tottenham, Robert Dayton is the Canadian Romantic @ HM157

- Suzanne Vega, Ari Hest @ El Rey

- War, Cheech & Chong, The Family Stone @ The Greek

- Korbee, Carmella Record Release Show, Rebecca Pidgeon & Bad Poetry, Samantha Aurelio @ Hotel Cafe

- Airs, Intimatchine, Ghost Noise, Cloud Cover @ The Smell

- Joan Osborne @ McCabe's (8 & 10 PM)

- Against Me!, Tony Molina, Big Eyes @ The Roxy


Scott Shultz holds the May edition of BUSted! True Stories About Getting Around LA by People Who Don't Drive at Stories Books and Cafe at 7:30 tonight and you should get there early because these are drawing big crowds. More trips down memory lane are provided by War, Cheech & Chong and The Family Stone at The Greek.  Against Me! begins a two-night run at The Roxy.

Sunday, May 25

- Monogem @ Bootleg HiFi

- Kevin Earnest, Balto, Jeremy Parise, Pause In Joy @ Hotel Cafe

- Against Me!, Tony Molina, Big Eyes @ The Roxy


Kevin Earnest (at right) has a show at Hotel Cafe for you Sunday night concert-goers, with Balto also playing. Nice way to spend a mellow evening.


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