Seeing experimental, avant-garde music in Los Angeles nearly always used to mean a trip to either REDCAT or a semi-legal warehouse in some remote industrial park, with few options between those two extremes. But since opening in April, Zebulon has offered a blessedly civilized, unpretentious middle ground, with a spacious, finely tuned listening room, two full bars, a patio and a menu of Moroccan-themed dips, salads and small plates. Transplanted from Brooklyn to Frogtown by its original owners, with help from L.A. label Everloving Records and local singer-songwriters Jesse Peterson and Mia Doi Todd, Zebulon has already booked numerous genre-defying artists who hadn't played L.A. in decades, or ever, largely because there was nowhere for them to go: Japanese noise-rock legend Keiji Haino's Fushitsusha, Suicide's Martin Rev, Tuareg electro-blues guitarist Mdou Moctar, Spanish/Indonesian electronic duo Drapetomania. This month, it hosts two of its coolest events yet: a metal-jazz night, co-presented by Angel City Jazz Festival, and a rare U.S. appearance by Krautrock pioneer Hans-Joachim Roedelius. What the Zebulon team will book next is anyone's guess, which is what makes their place such an exciting addition to L.A.'s live-music landscape.
Credit: Danny Liao