By LA Weekly
By Henry Rollins
By Weekly Photographers
By Shea Serrano
By Nate "Igor" Smith
By Dan Weiss
By Erica E. Phillips
By Kai Flanders
Also playing Monday: ASSS, BESTIAL MOUTHS, TIK/TIK, WHITE LEOPARDS at Echo Curio; BLIND BOY PAXTON, FRANK FAIRFIELD at Redwood Bar & Grill; WHITE ARROWS, RUMSPRINGA at Spaceland; UNKLE MONKEY at the Waterfront.
2700 N. Vermont Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90027
Category: Community Venues
Region: Los Feliz
TANYA MORGAN, U-N-I, AFRO-CLASSIC, AHMAD AT SPACELAND
Tanya Morgan hail from a place called Brooklynati, which, unless you're logically challenged, you've decoded as meaning they split their time between a New York borough and a Midwestern hub city. But "they"? Yes, Tanya Morgan is not actually a woman, but a hip-hop crew rounded out by rappers Donwill and Ilyas, and MC/producer Von Pea. The three met on a message board run by members of the Roots, so it makes sense that their style represents an equal mix of jazzy soulfulness, measured braggadocio and conscious thought. "Hardcore Gentlemen," the title of a Das EFX–styled song from 2009's Brooklynati LP, might serve as an apt descriptor. Though it's probably not a coincidence, the fact that Inglewood duo U-N-I derives its name from a Roots song ("UNIverse at War") is certainly fitting. Rappers Y-O and Thurzday represent a new breed of South L.A. crew that firmly rejects gangster put-ons in favor of fashion, wordplay and vocal swagger. (Chris Martins)
GZA, FREDDIE GIBBS AT THE ECHOPLEX
Gary Grice is his name, better known as GZA, sometimes aka "The Genius": You all know him from his halcyon days with Wu-Tang Clan alongside cousins RZA and Ol' Dirty Bastard. GZA did some of the best stuff on the Clan's first and best album, Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), and that would include the legendary "Clan in da Front." He's been doing sterling work all over the place since then, including a 1995 solo thing called Liquid Swords, produced by RZA, which is widely hailed as the best thing to ever come outta the Wu-Tang world. GZA also did the way-underrated 2005 Grandmasters set with DJ Muggs, and plans to issue a follow-up to his RZA-produced classic Liquid Swords in the next couple of months. Freddie Gibbs is the Gary, Indiana, and L.A.-based rapper (and not-long-ago L.A. Weekly cover dude) who brings an extremely and quite viciously articulate attack to his hard-core reality raps, and does it with a rare and genuinely thrilling charisma. (John Payne)
Also playing Tuesday: FITZ & THE TANTRUMS at Amoeba Music; CHELSEA BOYS, BUFFALO MOON, TAN DOLLAR at Echo Curio; CHRIS ISAAK, MARC BROUSSARD at the Greek Theatre; ALL SHOSTAKOVICH: LOS ANGELES PHILHARMONIC with LEONARD SLATKIN, SARAH CHANG PLAYS SHOSTAKOVICH at the Hollywood Bowl; THE MAINE, THIS CENTURY at House of Blues; BONOSSUS & THE GNOMEFLY, PALM READER, TARSISY-PHUS, LINGONBERRIES at the Smell.
JIMMY WEBB AT LARGO
Jimmy Webb is rightly celebrated for the string of hits — "By the Time I Get to Phoenix," "Up, Up & Away," "Galveston," "Wichita Lineman" — he penned for folks like Glen Campbell and the Fifth Dimension in the late 1960s. Although his songs were massively popular, there was a sophistication and eclectic experimentation that made his compositions inescapably catchy and yet capable of evoking profound emotions. A good example is "MacArthur Park," whose surreal lyrics and lengthy, multipart arrangement made it one of the unlikeliest hits of the decade, especially since it was sung-spoken by Richard Harris, an actor and not a singer. And yet, for all of the camp appeal of this beautiful mess of a song, the tune and lyrics were solid enough to have held up even after a series of disparate remakes by performers including Donna Summer, Waylon Jennings, the Queers and the Negro Problem. Of course, Webb is more than just a songwriter, having released his own series of overlooked solo albums and composed musical and film sound tracks. He has a new album, Just Across the River, which features collaborations with Linda Ronstadt, Willie Nelson, Billy Joel, Lucinda Williams, Glen Campbell and other celebrity fans/friends. (Falling James)
Also playing Wednesday: SIGNALS, THE CLOUD CITY SOUND SYMPHONY at the W.L.A. Bandshell; RYAN BINGHAM & THE DEAD HORSES at Bootleg Theatre; THE HOLD STEADY at Detroit Bar; CITY OF PROGRESS, WHQLES, RANDOM PATTERNS at Echo Curio; NORAH JONES, CORINNE BAILEY RAE at the Greek Theatre; GERSHWIN ACROSS AMERICA: JASON MRAZ, MONICA MANCINI, BEBE WINANS, NANCY WILSON, ST. VINCENT ALL-STAR BIG BAND & STRINGS feat. SHELLY BERG TRIO, GORDON GOODWIN, ARTURO SANDOVAL, TOM SCOTT at Hollywood Bowl; DEBI DERRYBERRY at Levitt Pavilion Pasadena; TOKIMONSTA, 6BL0CC at Low End Theory; VIBRATION INSTITUTE ORCHESTRA at Royal/T in Culver City; JASON FALKNER at Spaceland.
LUCINDA WILLIAMS, J.P., CHRISSIE & THE FAIRGROUND BOYS AT QUEEN MARY EVENTS PARK
The Pretenders' Chrissie Hynde is having a fascinating midlife crisis on Fidelity!, the new album by her latest project, J.P., Chrissie & the Fairground Boys. She found herself both falling in love and starting a new band with the Welsh singer J.P. Jones, describing him in song as "my perfect lover/but he's only half my age." Although the romantic union apparently didn't last, Hynde was so smitten with Jones that they've made a sideline out of musically documenting their relationship. Even with a hot new band, the Fairground Boys, Hynde still sounds much like she does with the Pretenders, but with the added thrill of twining her majestic voice with a male partner's. There are some wonderful moments on Fidelity! (whose title references Fidel Castro's Cuba, where much of the album was written), including the charmingly heartfelt title track. J.P., Chrissie & the Fairground Boys make their local debut at the Grammy Museum on Monday with a short set and a Q&A, but tonight they stretch out with a full acoustic set, opening for Lucinda Williams, whose own bittersweet country-rock songs are a simpatico match with Hynde's and Jones' tangled romanticism. (Falling James)
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