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
9009 Sunset Blvd.
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Region: West Hollywood
9081 Santa Monica Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Region: West Hollywood
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Los Angeles, CA 90012
It sounds like bolts of pure liquid sunshine pouring out of the sky when the Rebirth Brass Band's horns start blowing together. The New Orleans icons take their high school marching-band roots and blast them to the heavens, mixing jazzy insinuations within their nimbly funky rhythms on their latest album, Rebirth of New Orleans. No matter how blue you might be, the group's busily effusive, celebratory horn retorts will clear away the cobwebs and get your lifeless limbs moving again. Whether the Frazier brothers and crew are playing in a swanky nightclub or falling in line during an impromptu Crescent City street parade, their music has a compulsively funky drive that will literally cure whatever ails you. —Falling James
FREDRIK, TWILIGHT SLEEP, DRUG CABIN at Bootleg Bar; SWELL SEASON at McCabe's.
A fearless artist and performer whose voice inhabits a room like a choir of ghosts, this Echo Park native cuts an unexpected swath through the respective oeuvres of Tom Waits and Nina Simone. Many will have witnessed Dorian Wood as the accordion-toting soul of L.A.'s finest left-field street orchestra, Killsonic, while others may know him from his commissioned theater works for arts organizations like Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, but even in an intimate venue such as this, the man's work is imbued with both bleeding rawness and dramatic flair. His most recent release is the haunting Glassellalia, whose eight-minute title track is a tautly beautiful contemplation of hardship, featuring an unforgettable turn by local songstress Angela Correa. Wood will be accompanied at this show, but his warm vibrato and mastery over anything keyed (pianos, accordions) would be more than enough. —Chris Martins
THE PITY PARTY at Bootleg Bar; MILO GREENE, FAMILY OF THE YEAR at the Satellite; ELECTRIC GUEST at Echo; JOHN DAVERSA SMALL BAND at Seven Grand; ANNIE TROUSSEAU at Vibrato; CHILDREN OF BODOM at Yost Theater (Santa Ana).
As their name implies, the Asteroids Galaxy Tour have a glittery, sparkling sound, with their euphoric pop songs glazed with a stellar shine. On the Danish band's just-released second album, Out of Frequency, sleek keyboards and a festive horn section pump up singer Mette Lindberg's kittenish exhortations. Producer and chief songwriter Lars Iversen layers giddy, new-wave tunes like "Heart Attack" with circus-y arrangements and psychedelic whooshing sounds, stopping just short of making things too slick and plastic. Even when Lindberg chirps, "You got me head over heels on gasoline," the mood is always exuberant and never really dark. —Falling James
Audra Mae and the Almighty Sound
Though still a fresh-faced young'un, Audra Mae has an old-soul rock & roll voice. She belts like she could be the spawn of Janis, but Audra Mae is actually the great-great-niece of Judy Garland. From Oklahoma and complete with a hardscrabble past, Audra Mae came to L.A. seven years ago with $20 and has since written lyrics for Susan Boyle and had her cover of "Forever Young" on the TV series Sons of Anarchy. A new album comes out today with her killer deviled-roots band, the Almighty Sound — stand-up bassist Joe Ginsberg, guitarist Jarrad Kritzstein, pianist Frank Pedano, drummer Kiel Fehercame and backup vocalists Brent Kyle and Chelsea Butts (Audra's sister). Audra Mae's chilling version of Dolly Parton's "Little Sparrow" is a soul-tingler. I'd bet the farm on this one. —Libby Molyneaux
"I miss my wife," wails Nick Thorburn on "Can't Feel My Face," an organ-blaring standout from A Sleep and a Forgetting. The latest album from Brooklyn-based Islands, to be released on this same Valentine's Day, is most certainly a breakup record, but rather than dwell in minor keys and melancholia, Thorburn sounds like he's celebrating something. Quite possibly, it's his own imminent emotional implosion, but the music (and hence the listener) suffers none of that. Instead, we're treated to bouts of barroom blues, swooning soul, plinking piano, and what might be the only heartfelt sentiment Thorburn's committed to wax since the unfortunate implosion of his legendary quirk-pop project the Unicorns. Truth be told, it's the best material to rise out of those hallowed ashes yet, and fans of 2003's Who Will Cut Our Hair When We're Gone? would be foolish to pass up this opportunity to witness it live. —Chris Martins
You Me at Six
These perpetually wounded, well-known-at-home Anglos are tackling two major career crossroads simultaneously: Three albums in (and now firmly out of their teens), they're gingerly transitioning from boyish pop-punk to "credible" rock and attempting — as all serious U.K. bands must at least once — to "break America." On paper, YMaS are an irresistible proposition. They're an almost laboratory-created fusion of sunny SoCal punk-lite and post-emo angst with camera-friendly frontman Josh Franceschi's tremulous Brit-pop. They have robust melodies and are nuanced musically, but the route to stateside stardom is littered with equally worthy over-there casualties (from Manic Street Preachers to Stereophonics to Ash), and You Me at Six may have outgrown the youthful bloom that was once their most persuasive passport. —Paul Rogers
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