A Year of Concerts: 2013

IMG_3354

Listed chronologically, the most recent show first.

Stevie Wonder | Songs In The Key Of Life | Nokia Theatre L.A. Live | 12/21/13

Shy Girls | The Spare Room and Bootleg Bar | 12/12/13 and 12/13/13

Snoopzilla and Dam Funk “7 Days Of Funk” Record Release Party | Los Angeles Exchange | 12/10/13

Thundercat | The Echoplex | 12/05/13

Moses Sumney | The Echoplex | 12/05/13

Pearl Jam | Los Angeles Sports Arena | Nov. 23-24, 2013

Ben Harper | Walt Disney Concert Hall | 11/18/13

The Record Company | The Satellite | 11/15/13

The Janks | The Satellite | 11/15/13

Nine Inch Nails | Staples Center | 11/08/13

Iron & Wine | The Orpheum Theatre | 10/31/13

Laura Mvula | The Orpheum Theatre | 10/31/13

Hiatus Kaiyote | Skirball Cultural Center | 10/30/13

Moses Sumney | Skirball Cultural Center | 10/30/13

Hanni El Khatib| El Rey Theatre| 10/25/13

Bass Drum of Death | El Rey Theatre | 10/25/13

Tijuana Panthers | El Rey Theatre| 10/25/13

The Secret State | Loaded Hollywood | 10/13/13

Filter Magazine’s Culture Collide 2013 | Echo Park | 11/10/13 – 11/11/13  (Wooster, Tiny Ruins, Maya Vik, Iza, Medicine, Jacco Gardner, Gemini Club and Great White Buffalo)

Fiona Apple and Blake Mills | Walt Disney Concert Hall | 10/7/13

Depeche Mode | Staples Center | 9/29/13

M83, Hollywood Bowl Orchestra and Phantogram | Hollywood Bowl | 9/22/13

The Beach Ball Festival: Soul Revue | Santa Monica Pier | September 21, 2013 (Myron & E, Lee Fields and the Expressions, Maceo Parker, Allen Stone and Aloe Blacc)

Laura Mvula | El Rey Theatre | 9/17/13

IMG_3356

Lobster Festival | Port of Los Angeles | September 14, 2013 (The Section Quartet, Nightmare & The Cat, Deap Vally, Dead Sara)

Girl in a Coma | The Echoplex | September 12, 2013

Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue | Twilight Concert Series | August 29, 2013

The Dustbowl Revival | Twilight Concert Series | August 29, 2013

FYF FEST | L.A. State Historic Park | August 24 and 25, 2013 (Mikal Cronin, Charles Bradley, The Breeders, Devendra Banhart, The Locust, Deerhunter, TV on the Radio, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The Orwells, Pional, How To Dress Well, No Age, !!! (ChkChkChk), Shlohmo, MGMT, Solange, and Holy Ghost!)

Poncho Sanchez and his Latin Jazz Band |Burton W. Chace Park | August 17, 2013

The National | Jimmy Kimmel Live | August 12, 2013

Hanni El Khatib | Twilight Concert Series | August 8, 2013

Hiatus Kaiyote | The Bootleg Theater | July 31, 2013

Geographer | Getty Center | July 27, 2013

Tijuana Tears | The Virgil | July 24, 2013

Savages | El Rey Theatre | July 23, 2013

Alabama Shakes | Hollywood Palladium | July 17th, 2013

Rodrigo y Gabriela | Hollywood Bowl | July 14, 2013

Young, Gifted & Nina: A Tribute to Nina Simone | California Plaza | July 5, 2013

BET Experience | R. Kelly, New Edition & The Jacksons | Staples Center | 6/30/13

BET Experience | Snoop, Kendrick Lamar & J.Cole | Staples Center | 6/29/13

BET Experience | Beyonce | Staples Center | 6/28/13

Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters | Shrine Auditorium | June 26th, 2013

Nina Diaz | Hotel Café | June 9th, 2013

Ink-N-Iron Festival | Queen Mary | June 8, 2013 (Girl in a Coma, Hopeless Jack & the Handsome Devil, Kaleigh Baker, The Fleshtones, Dead Kennedys and Iggy and the Stooges)

Illumination Road | The Roxy | June 4, 2013

Make Music Pasadena 2013 | June 1, 2013 (The Record Company, The Peach Kings, YACHT, Robert DeLong, Youngblood Hawke, Haunted Summer and The Likes of Us)

A Night For Jolie; A Night To Remember | Henson Recording Studios | May 31, 2013

Hanni El Khatib and The Black Angels | Mayan Theater | 5/21/13

What Made Milwaukee Famous | Central SAPC | 5/19/13

Dead Sara | El Rey Theater | May 9, 2013

New Build and No Ceremony/// | First Unitarian Church | April 27, 2013

Coachella 2013 | April 12-14 | Friday (Of Monsters and Men, Passion Pit, Palma Violets, Modest Mouse, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Jurassic 5, Stone Roses and How To Destroy Angels)

Coachella 2013 | April 12-14 | Saturday (Ben Howard, Pucifer, Violent Femmes, Grizzly Bear, Postal Service, Franz Ferdinand and Phoenix)

Coachella 2013 | April 12-14 | Sunday (Alex Clare, Rodriguez, Vampire Weekend, Nick Cave, Wu-Tang Clan and Red Hot Chili Peppers)

Toddchella | Part I | Tijuana Tears

Toddchella | Part II | The Record Company

Toddchella | Part III | We Were Indians

The Weeks | Three Clubs | 3/29/13

Nik Kai | 12 Year Old Guitar Prodigy | The Future of Shredding

The Night Hiatus Kaiyote Blew My Mind At The Del Monte Speakeasy 3/23/13

Jose James | The Del Monte Speakeasy | 3/13/13

Morrissey | Staples Center | 3/1/13

Orange Tulip Conspiracy |El Cid | 2/22/13

Soundgarden | The Wiltern | 2/16/13

The Robert Glasper Experiment | The Roxy | 2/8/13

Social Distortion | The House of Blues (Sunset) | 01/26/13

IMG_3360

Savages | El Rey Theatre | July 23, 2013

Savages | El Rey 2013

I wanted to catch Savages‘ set at Coachella in 2013. From what little I knew about them at the time, they were an all-female, loud, punk band based out of the United Kingdom. They didn’t have a lot of music out, but from what I was able to hear and watch online, they definitely piqued my curiosity. As fate would have it, I wasn’t able to get to the festival grounds in time and they became one of the many bands that I had to add to the list of band casualties.

But as fate would also have it, a few months later, a buddy of mine emailed me letting me know he had a couple of extra tickets to catch them at the El Rey, July 23, 2013. By that time, tickets for both of their shows had already sold out, so I jumped at the opportunity.

When I got to the venue, the opening act was already onstage performing: Johnny Hostile. Johnny Hostile is a co-founder, along with Savages lead singer Jehnny Beth, of Pop Noire Records and one of the producers of of Savages’ debut album Silence Yourself.

DSC02196

Alone on stage, accompanied for the most part only by a drum machine and guitar pedals, he set the mood right for what was to come. His music was moody, ethereal and heavy. Part synth-pop and part punk, with industrial drums. His set was accented with special appearances by Gemma Thompson (Savages’ guitarist) and Jehnny Beth for various songs. It was truly a perfect appetizer to the main entree of Savages. I ended up purchasing his 7” single that was for sale, and even got him to autograph it after the show. I would have taken a picture of it, but I can’t find it at the moment as it’s lost in my vinyl stack that need to be organized (and listened to).

Dressed in their trademark all black, Savages took the stage to a rousing and wild applause. I was up front about three rows from the stage. I kept my fingers crossed that a crazy mosh pit wouldn’t ensue like the last concert at the El Rey I attended, but as fate would have it, they played their most popular, and aggressive songs first. Yup, there was a mosh pit. I really wanted to get some video of “City’s Full” and “Shut Up”, but I wasn’t going to take a chance at having my camera knocked out of my hand.

DSC02205

Savages are about as intense as a band can get. Jehnny Beth sets the mood with her deep stare that almost makes you nervous to watch her. It’s a threatening stare that intimidates and fits the music that the band creates. Her stage presence is almost menacing, but that only adds to the effectiveness of the show.  Ayse Hassan was steady on bass, and Fay Milton was relentless on drums, but I was particularly impressed with the playing of Gemma Thompson. Gemma Thompson was absorbed in her guitar play, creating her own “wall of sound”. Amazing.

DSC02208

DSC02214Drenched in sweat after the fourth song, I had to leave the front to get some air and dry off. As I pushed my way through the crowd, I noticed that Jehnny was wearing pink pumps. With their all-black apparel, the brightness of the shoes caught me a little off guard but at the same time screamed “punk”. Yup, I had to take a picture of her shoes. I do not have a shoe fetish.

With only one album under their belt, their set was relatively short, but powerful. The set list for the show was a follows:

  1. City’s Full
  2. I Am Here
  3. Shut Up
  4. Give Me A Gun
  5. Strife
  6. Waiting for a Sign
  7. Flying to Berlin
  8. No Face
  9. She Will
  10. Hit Me
  11. Husbands
  12. Fuckers (new song)

When the set ended, I met up with my friend and we both shared our excitement for the show we just witnessed. I hung out front for a minute in case any of the players from the evening popped out to greet fans, and lucky enough I was able to get Johnny Hostile, Gemma Thompson, and Jehnny Beth to sign their respective vinyl releases. I was able to get a picture with Gemma, but was thwarted in my efforts to get a picture with Jehnny as another fan scared her away. I swear that Gemma was all smiles before the picture was taken. Savages sure do take their image very seriously.

DSC02234

I had a brief conversation with Johnny Hostile and I noticed that he had an accent. Slightly confused as I thought the band was UK based, he explained that both he and Jehnny were originally from France. Having studied French growing up, and never having the opportunity to use it, I started a conversation in my broken French and concluded the conversation by saying that Gemma was “tres jolie”. He told me that he would tell her that. Please do, Johnny. Please do.

IMG_2218