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Friday, October 24, 2014

Jonathan Rado (left) and Sam France of Foxygen. - PHOTO BY CARA ROBBINS
  • Photo by Cara Robbins
  • Jonathan Rado (left) and Sam France of Foxygen.
Sam France doesn't want to talk about any “rebound record.”

“It’s not a rebound. Stuff was never that bad.”

France doesn't sound particularly hostile, or even mildly annoyed. If anything, he sounds like a teenager explaining to the teacher why his homework isn't done.

“We both were young, certainly,” he admits. “But people were writing things about us for their own motives.”

France and childhood friend Jonathan Rado are the two horns on the rampaging bull that is the psych-rock duo Foxygen.

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  • Courtesy of Roadrunner Records
  • Slipknot
Dark clouds barraged nine-piece metal behemoth Slipknot in the wake of their 2008 release All Hope Is Gone. The death of bassist Paul Gray in 2010 from a drug overdose nearly derailed the group permanently. The band regrouped two years later for live shows, but then longtime drummer Joey Jordison left the group under nebulous circumstances at the end of 2013. (Members of the group are not legally allowed to discuss his departure.)

As 2014 heads towards the finish line, the clouds are lifting. The band has returned with a new drummer and bassist for their first album in six years, .5: The Gray Chapter. The group is bringing their powerful and physical live performance to Southern California as headliners of Knotfest, a three-day heavy metal festival, October 24 to 26 in San Bernardino.

We spoke with Slipknot frontman Corey Taylor about the band’s return, who he’s looking forward to seeing at Knotfest, and the proposed “Scent of Slipknot” permeating the air at the festival.

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Nothing says Halloween like a McDonald's themed Black Sabbath cover band - PHOTO COURTESY OF MAC SABBATH
  • Photo courtesy of Mac Sabbath
  • Nothing says Halloween like a McDonald's themed Black Sabbath cover band
Most of the biggie boo-gie nights are next weekend, but this week sure has some wicked warm-ups. Here are three very different but equally terror-ific events to break in your costume, sample bewitching brews and have a bloody good time.

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Fanatic! Hello from raining Antwerp, Belgium. I have some film work out here for the next few days. I have to be on set soon so this might be a bit brief

This is our last show for October. We are working away on our November shows and I think you will like them. We will be getting into the Scott Walker / Sunn 0))) collaboration album, the Fugazi Demos album to name but two. I was at Dischord the other day when the CD version of that one came in. Very cool to see it.

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Thursday, October 23, 2014

Thursday, October 23, 2014

L.A. Stories

In Battles of the Bands, The Slightlys Keep Winning (VIDEO)

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Thu, Oct 23, 2014 at 8:56 AM

Could L.A. Teen Rock Band 'The Slightlys' Be the Next Big Thing? from Voice Media Group on Vimeo.

Since forming just two years ago, L.A.-based pop/rock band The Slightlys have already won three "Battle of the Bands" competitions and played both the Warped Tour and the Santa Monica Pier Twilight Concert series. Pretty impressive, right? But here's the even more impressive part: They're all still in high school.

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Studio 69. - LINA LECARO
  • Lina Lecaro
  • Studio 69.
Two full weekends of Halloween madness? What's a party monster to do? We say, suck it up (like a vampire) and become a full blown creature of the night.

Trying to keep up with the scary surplus of clubby creep-a-thons and dress-up events in L.A. might kill you, but these parties are worth it! Here, our picks for the best bashes in town. No rest for the wicked indeed...

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[Look for your weekly fix from the one and only Henry Rollins right here on West Coast Sound every Thursday, and come back tomorrow for the awesomely annotated playlist for his Sunday KCRW broadcast.]

It’s 0607 hrs, which wouldn’t be so bad if I weren’t in Washington, D.C., having just arrived from Los Angeles yesterday afternoon. I am operating on about three hours of sleep.

I’m sitting in the Starbucks at 1810 Wisconsin Ave., just blocks from the hotel where I am staying. This particular one distinguishes itself as the place where three employees were shot and killed in a robbery attempt in 1997. There is a sculpture on the wall with their names.

Today will be slightly blurred. Thankfully, I am not responsible for much besides being semi-coherent for some meetings a few hours from now. I have X-Ray Spex’s perfect, I mean without flaw, Germfree Adolescents album at a heroic volume in my Shure SE846s keeping me wired.

I will, over the next two weeks, drag you with me through different time zones and obligations, all filtered through varying degrees of sleep deprivation.

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See Friday: Ariana Grande at We Can Survive - PHOTO BY TOM MUNRO
  • Photo by Tom Munro
  • See Friday: Ariana Grande at We Can Survive
Be sure to check out our constantly updated concert calendar!

Friday, October 24

We Can Survive with Taylor Swift, Pharrell
Even with the change of seasons (however subtle that might be in Southern California), the Hollywood Bowl hosts one more big outdoor spectacle as if it were still summer. The main appeal of We Can Survive — an annual benefit for the Young Survival Coalition and Living Beyond Breast Cancer — is that it brings together a bunch of pop’s biggest names, including several who could fill the Bowl on their own. Important questions abound. Pharrell Williams’ breezy “Happy” was the perfect, if ubiquitous, summertime song — will it maintain its charm despite overexposure? Will Taylor Swift ever run out bad boyfriends for songwriting fodder? And who’s Iggy Azalea feuding with this week? Meanwhile, Azalea’s “Problem”-matic pal, pint-size powerhouse Ariana Grande (who won’t be back in these parts until April), continues to impress with her soulful vocal acrobatics. —Falling James

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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Electro-rap quartet Far East Movement have been MIA from L.A. for nearly three years. The hometown boys scored a number one hit, "Like a G6," back in 2010, which quickly spiraled into world tours with everyone from LMFAO to Rihanna.

But now it's time for a homecoming, and the Koreatown natives know just how to do it.

Their new six-song EP, K-Town Riot, also comes with a five-minute mini-documentary of the same name. The video explores the infamous 1992 riots through first-hand accounts from Angelenos on the ground (and a dose of Roy Choi, because when you've got a Roy Choi, you don't waste him).

L.A. Weekly is premiering the mini-doc right here. K-Town Riot, the EP, drops October 28. We spoke with Far East Movement's Kev Nish about both projects, as well as the group's memories of those terrifying days in 1992 when the Rodney King riots spread like wildfire through his neighborhood.

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  • Photo by Chapman Baehler

The time has arrived for a changing of the Elvis at Pink Duck Studios. The velvet painting on the wall just isn't cutting it, and Joshua Homme wants it replaced. "That velvet Elvis sucks," Homme tells his studio manager. "It's truly awful." So down it comes, switched with a more regal portrait of Presley as a younger man, microphone in hand, dressed in a steel-blue prom tuxedo with a sky-high '70s collar to remind us who we're looking at. The Big E, the Hillbilly Sinatra, The King.

Homme hangs the painting directly above a rack of custom electric guitars, his tools of choice as leader of the band Queens of the Stone Age, where he crafts an eccentric hard-rock roar of elegance and brutal swing. Trent Reznor calls Queens "the best rock band in the world" and extols their ongoing tradition of bravado, vulnerability and authenticity, adding, "And they could kick your ass if you ran into them in a bar somewhere."

That happens less often these days, as Homme at 41 is a committed family man, with two little kids and a punk-rock wife (Brody Dalle, of The Distillers and Spinnerette) at home in the Hollywood Hills. He remains a sturdy redhead with tattooed knuckles, standing 6-foot-4 in lizard-skin boots.

Someone once called Homme the "Ginger Elvis," and it stuck; gifts of Elvis ephemera have been arriving from friends and family ever since. You can see the affection on Homme's face as he stands in his private recording studio in a quiet industrial corner of Burbank, taking in Presley's sainted image and the moment in time depicted in oils. "That to me is post-'68 comeback," Homme says, looking at the painting with a smile, "where he's feeling good, he's back on top, and he's just starting to dress funny."

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