Rock Picks: The Little Ones, Eagle and Talon, Elliott Murphy | Music | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly
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Rock Picks: The Little Ones, Eagle and Talon, Elliott Murphy 

Also, Ida Maria, Sara Lov, John Legend and others

Wednesday, Jan 7 2009
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THURSDAY, JANUARY 8

Sabrosa Purr at the Roxy

Yes, there are still amateur Angeleno bands building robust reps through self-financed recordings and compelling club shows (and without monkeying themselves out to reality TV). Sabrosa Purr are an odd collision of loner, stoner introversion and crotch-thrusting fuzz-box rawk. They lurch from the ultra-ethereal, flotation-tank vocals and slithery, succulent guitars of “Suckerpunch Kiss” to the open-shirted glam strut of “Fashion Kills” without so much as an explanation or apology. Though probably more convincing at the former than the latter, they seldom sound contrived. Yet for every moment of earnest Pink Floyd–ish psychedelia, each hint of enigmatic early Cure b-sides or sexy T-Rex flexes, Sabrosa Purr are really all about the original Jane’s Addiction — they’re eclectic because Jane’s were. The heavily delayed yelps of “Killing the Aries” and “Sabrosa Purr, Pt. 1”’s druggy whimper are downright Jane’s addicted, but they’re lost in enough love to forget and forgive. Few bands traverse heel-stomping, classic-rock crunch and eyes-clenched, headphone bliss like this. (Paul Rogers)

click to flip through (7) Natural selection: The Little Ones
  • Natural selection: The Little Ones
 

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North Hollywood’s Nacional Records has been doing a bang-up job over the last couple of years, releasing a diverse string of terrific Latin-pop records by acts including Manu Chao, Aterciopelados and the Pinker Tones. One of 2008’s most likable was Tijuana Sound Machine, a border-busting mash-up of hip-swiveling electro beats and traditional instrumentation by Bostich + Fussible, two members of Mexico’s acclaimed Nortec Collective. If your affection for Beck’s work took a serious dive following Odelay, these might be the guys for you: In tasty tracks like “Shake It Up” and “Akai 47,” Bostich + Fussible set about making unlikely connections in a way that never once makes you think about any intellectual heavy lifting (even as it’s occurring). Expect cuts from Tijuana tonight, but also expect the unexpected; part of Nortec’s deal is making the live techno experience seem, y’know, live. (Mikael Wood)

Elvis Presley Birthday Concert at Avalon

Ceremonial veneration of Elvis Presley has assumed a strange, semi-theological role in American society — a public examination of the King and his ongoing relation to the world, through the analysis of his rock & roll teachings and humble hillbilly origins. This year’s lineup seems especially suited to meet such a standard, with an expanded psychedelic edge brought by Strawberry Alarm Clock, I See Hawks in L.A. and ’60s-era psych spearhead Simon Stokes, and, with Ronnee Blakely, Lisa Finnie and Michelle Shocked, even more of the contemplative feminine intellect coming into play than is usually seen at these pilgrimages. Of course, it’s not just a case of purely cerebral approbation — you also get the roaring rockabilly of E.P. contemporary Ray Campi; the perpetually electrifying teen-idol war cry of Jimmy Angel; the Groovy Rednecks’ boozy, knock-down honky-tonk; Carlos Guitarlos’ rocked-blues bite; and the tender country soul of tavern troubadour Mike Stinson. With a couple of dozen additional worshippers, the inevitable too-big-to-announce participants and the fact that all proceeds go to benefit fallen firefighters, baby, it’s a don’t-be-no-square, mandatory-type affair. (Jonny Whiteside)

Also playing Thursday:

THE METEORS at Brixton South Bay; CAVA at Eastside Luv; JESCA HOOP at the Hotel Café; WATKINS FAMILY HOUR at Largo at the Coronet; MIGHTY REGIS, MEGASOUL CONNECTOR at Molly Malone’s; CODY BRYANT at Viva Cantina.

 

FRIDAY, JANUARY 9

The Little Ones, Plants & Animals, The Phatal DJ, J. Rocc at Natural History Museum

2009 is the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth and the 150th anniversary of his revolutionary work On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection. The “First Fridays” series at the Natural History Museum celebrates the event with a trek into the world of Darwin and the colossal impact of his discoveries on our daily lives. On the first Friday of every month through June 5, the museum stays open late, with live music and interactive science programming, curator-guided gallery tours and discussions about evolutionary science. Opening night features classic West Coast pop from L.A.’s Little Ones; the luxuriant, eclectic indie rock of Montreal’s Plants & Animals; and the ever-evolutionary beats & blasts of the Phatal DJ and the awesome J. Rocc. Next up comes the Bird & the Bee, Jukebox the Ghost, the Phatal DJ and DJ Michael Stock of Dublab.com on Friday, February 6. (John Payne)

Gram Rabbit, Pop Levi at the Troubadour

“Due to the confused state of the industry,” as they put it on their Web site, Joshua Tree’s electro-twang outfit Gram Rabbit are funding the recording of their new album themselves and with help from their fans: Go to gramrabbit.com, and you can donate enough dough to earn T-shirts, DVDs and/or autographed copies of the record they eventually complete. (While you’re there, check out the mildly amusing video for their holiday single, “California Christmas,” in which singer Jesika von Rabbit accessorizes her sexy Mrs. Claus outfit with a pair of hot-pink Ray-Bans.) Local oddball Pop Levi recently released a strong folk-funk disc called Never Never Love, which impressively minimizes the distance between Prince and Marc Bolan; according to his MySpace, Levi’s got a new one due out this spring called Micro Sex Tapes. (Mikael Wood)

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