Thursday, November 4, 2010
Thievery Corporation, The Heavy, Nice Nice, and a four day concert series. That's the range of music that has captured the interests of our culture scouts on this edition of the Weekend Preview.
Thievery Corporation, The Heavy, Nice Nice, and a four day concert series. That's the range of music that has captured the interests of our culture scouts on this edition of the Weekend Preview.
Liz Bradshaw is the curator at The Loft at UCSD and has worked in the music industry for many years.
Seth Combs is a freelance writer in San Diego.
Zack Nielsen is the founder of the local arts non-profit, Sezio.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: I'm Maureen Cavanaugh and you're listening to These Days on KPBS. There's lots of music on this weekend preview, some really interesting bands coming to town, plus the showing of a documentary about women surfers, are the opening of a new art space downtown, plus San Diego beer week. I'd like to introduce my guests to guide us through the weekend preview, Liz Bradshaw is the curator at the Loft in UCSD. And has worked in the music industry for many years. Liz welcome back.
LIZ BRADSHAW: Good morning.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Seth Combs is a freelance writer in San Diego, Seth, good morning.
SETH COMBS: Good morning, thanks for having me.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Let's start right off if we can with the Thievery Corporation and Massive Attack at Rimac Arena. Liz can you tell us more about these two bands?
Liz Bradshaw: Yeah, I can. Well, there's so much to say about both of these bands because they've really been around for quite I while now. But I'll try and be brief. I'm pretty excite body this show, I have to say. So I'll start with Massive Attack, I was really just mentioning to Seth earlier, I feel like this is a sound track to my teenaged years in England. And I was always a huge fan of this, and Massive Attack, and portis head, and everything but the girl. Massive Attack, they have been around since the very late '80s. A couple albums of notes are really blue lines, which had this song, unfinished symphony in it, which has been put in so many best of categories I couldn't even name them all. Then all also the blue lines album as well. And then from late to run in the 90s which has the teardrop song, and if you think you don't know that song, think of the House song. And then grand daddy G Marshall, and they've worked with all sorts of people, Portishead, Trick-E, Tracy Thorn from Everything but the Girl, Shara Nelson, Nana Cherry doing vocals. So there's so much to talk about with them. And I want to say that the original teardrop song was actually song by Elizabeth Frasier of the Cocteau Twins. So just across the board.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: And is Thievery Corporation gonna bring you back across the board ?
Liz Bradshaw: I could go on forever. Not really quite as much, but also a really great so I'm looking forward to delving into this evening. And over the past 14 years, they have gone on to write, produce, these numerous studio mix albums, remix albums film sound tracks, I would say Massive Attack are a bit darker than Thievery Corporation of they're both definitely electronic trip hop style, experimental, but I think what Thievery Corporation bring is a different -- is a kind of more of a jazz, reggae, Bossa Nova, slightly more upbeat sound, kind of more chilled out and less intense than Massive Attack.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Let's hear it. Thievery Corporation is the track we have, and the track is all that we perceive from their album, it takes a thief.
That is it you will that we perceive from the album it takes a thief, by thievery Corporation. They will be here playing at Rimac arena with Massive Attack. Is it common these days to have two heavyweight bands like this sharing the bill?
Liz Bradshaw: I think this is a really great example of promoters getting creative these days. It's a tough economy, and I think audiences and music lovers just want a little more bang for their buck. In fact just this weekend also in San Diego, you've got Colbie Caillat and Jewel teaming up and John legend and Macy Gray teaming up. So I think it might be kind of where these larger arena styles are heading more into a kind of radio style or festival style lineup.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Right and it sounds as if the way you describe these bands or when we just heard, this is it gonna be a dance party at Rimac.
Liz Bradshaw: Maybe kind of, like, a slower dance party.
SETH COMBS: A little more bumping and grinding.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Thank you, Seth.
SETH COMBS: No fist pumping.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Thievery Corporation and Massive Attack will be playing at Rimac arena at UCSD's campus, and that is tonight. We're gonna be looking at another show happening over the course of four days of joining us to talk about this item is Zach Nielson from Sezio, and Zach, welcome to These Days.
ZACH NIELSON: Good morning how are you doing?
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: I'm doing just great. You're the man behind this four-day concert series, tell us what will be happening.
ZACH NIELSON: Well, we've basically been taking the last two weeks to turn a warehouse space downtown into a giant tented living room. We've been working with the folks over at sushi art down in east village, and we have eight bands lined up for the next four nights.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: How did you decide which bands to include in this event?
ZACH NIELSON: We really went for some of our favorite bands in the countries. Headlining the event is the Do-Dos out of San Francisco, those guys have been to basically every huge music festival over the summer, and really excited to get them down here. They're right in the middle of recording their fourth Record and are basically coming down for a one op show. And a band called Avi Buffalo who is brand new coming down from Long Beach, then we have a handful of some of our favorite local San Diego acts too.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Seth, this is the second year for this event, you went last year. What are some of the things people should look forward to?
SETH COMBS: Yeah, well, they did something similar last year. It was a five night -- five successive nights called live at loose lost. And it was two bands a night, all local bands and I, you know, I went in, going like oh, I'm gonna go, to like 1 or 2 of them. I went to all five because they were so good. It was really intimate. You know, there was chairs set up for everybody and a couple of the same performers, local performers are performing at these ones as well. Joel west and tree ring stand out. They were the best out of that lineup. I would just tell people to expect, like, a really cool intimate concert. Not like, you know, there's not gonna be any hooliganery or anything like that.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: A new word. I love it. And tree ring, we had them performing on These Days, will they be performing, Zach, new material do you know.
ZACH NIELSON: Yes, definitely, they just got finished recording their new record up in Idlewyld. And Joel's been over in Iceland mixing that for the last week, so they are fresh back from that and have basically a whole brand-new record they'll be debuting tonight.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Wow, we have a clip from one of their older songs. This is the tree with rings where I am sleeping.
That's the tree ring performing dreams where I am sleeping. The tree ring is one of eight bands what are going to be performing at Sezio which begins tonight. Now there is the music side of this event, but Zach, you also have a pop up shop and art installation. Of tell us about that.
ZACH NIELSON: Well, we've worked with artist Wes Bruce on basically the whole, entire space. Beyond the initial gallery space with the pop up store which I'll get to, but more importantly the living room space and this kind of like giant gypsy tent that we've created, Wes has been down there sleeping at the space, probably, really. And we've been loading in all of our couches and our friends' living rooms and everything. So I mean, it's definitely a homey kind of warm feel to it. And that's really the point. We go to see so many of these bands that we love at really, bars that happen to have a sound system. And what's great about sushi space is we can kind of separate any drinks or anything, socializing, leave that, you know, out in the front area, and really have, like, a music focused event. And that's definitely what you'll be coming down to see.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: And what is -- what about the pop up shop? What is that?
ZACH NIELSON: Well, sushi has a great little gallery space in the front. So we wanted to create this kind of interactive retail experience that will not only have merch from the bands that are playing, but also Sezio has a decent artist series that we've amassed over the years, local artists' work that we've put on T-shirts and we also teamed up with a local humanitarian based clothing company called Jedediah that has quite a few of their fall and holiday line down there, and Wes also sculpted that whole space as an art exhibit.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Well, Zach Nielson, thank you so much for telling us about it.
ZACH NIELSON: Yeah, thank you for having me.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: And I want to let everyone know, Sezio's four-day weekend begins tonight at sushi performing arts in the east village. Let's move on, Liz, to the screening of a documentary, it's about women and the waves. A female centered surf film. Tell us more about that.
LIZ BRADSHAW: Yeah, so the women in the waves, it was released originally in 2009, and the first time I heard about it, I think when I came on here back in March, I talked about a women's surf exhibition at the California surfing museum, when I went to check out that exhibition, that was when I became aware of this film. So it's a documentary surf film that explores the lives of ten female surfers who over the past decade have really carved a space for themselves in a predominantly kind of male focused sport. They range in age from 17 to 66 years.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Wow.
LIZ BRADSHAW: They feature big and small waves, long boarding, short boarding, huge wave riding, completely different styles. The film is produced we a surfer called heather Hudson. And I think what I love about this film most of all is that these women are so real. I've actually watched it a few times. Bit of a nerd. But they're not super flashy like bronzed beach babes with tiny bikinis, these are really, you know, mostly California women who can surf and are just completely stoked and really want to share that with everybody, and want to talk about what being alive and being in the ocean means to them. I just made it sound really cheesy.
SETH COMBS: There are bikinis, right?
LIZ BRADSHAW: There are bikinis, yeah. A couple of women of note in the film, Linda Benson, winner of over 50 first place competitions between the years of and 1059 and 69, some great footage of her surfing back in the early 60s, and then some great footage of her suffering now. At 64 just looking so graceful and wonderful, and you know, a lot of it was shot in California as well.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Well, you've sold me. I don't think it's nerdy. Tell us a little bit about this waves of change studio where this documentary's gonna be shown.
LIZ BRADSHAW: This waves of change studio is in Solana beach. And it's founded by a local called Mary McKibbins Craft who is currently president of the San Diego Surf Ladies group. It's locally owned and operated. And offers all sorts of, kind of like unique fitness and life balance programs around surfing and yoga and wellness and just kind of promotes healthy fun living and sunshine.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Is there gonna be any Q and A or anybody featured in the film --
LIZ BRADSHAW: Yes, there's actually two screenings of the film, and before the screenings heather Hudson will be there answering some questions, and of course beverages and food, yummy organic healthy snacks and beverages will be served at both screenings.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: That will make you want to did out and surf.
LIZ BRADSHAW: Yeah, and I should quickly add, I actually checked the website this morning. And spots are really filling up fast for this. So if you're interested in going, then get to the website, I think it's waves of change dot U.S., and you can register on line there.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Terrific, the new surf documentary, the women in the waves, it screens this Saturday night at Waves of Change Studio in Solana Beach. Seth, the opening of Sudden Art Gallery is this Friday. Why are you excite about this new gallery Seth?
SETH COMBS: I'm excited in eligible in what is sort of a rejuvenated downtown art scene, over the last year, it's really kind of blossomed up around the clubs and the restaurants that just never end. SDSU gallery, Alexander Salazar fine art, and a few one off shows, and it's just getting cool in the east village. This one in particular is in the gas lamp. I really like this one because it's very unique. In that it's in a space called the industry show room. Essentially it's a shared office space. I think they actually used it originally to -- when they were opening the hard rock hotel to bring press people in and say, here's what our rooms are going to look like. So it looks like a really cool designed room like a hotel is. And then they just kind of, like, when they were done, they built the hotel and they abandoned it. This guy, Rex, down at the industry show room turned to into, like, this communal office space where people -- you know, who want to, like, open and take that next step with their little indie retail business can come and have this shared show room with all their products as well as like an office space. But there's all kinds of stuff down there, there's like a yoga studio as well, and some artists working down there, there's a photography studio.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Right, and on the website it also boasts you'll see a lot of designee things down there.
SETH COMBS: Yeah, it's a lot of designee stuff. As I mentioned, there's a lot of clothing, there's a lot of people down this who are designing their own fashion lines and they have a space to work out of, a lot of them do, and they also have, like an actual show room in the heart of the gas lamp where there's tons of foot traffic because of the hotels and restaurants and people come by there, and they're like oh, what's this?
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: So these shops are gonna be open Friday night as well for this event?
SETH COMBS: Yeah, I should talk about the art a little bit. There's, like, over 20 artists at this show that they're having in the back. But what they're gonna do with the actual retail space is, you know, it's actually all out this on the floor, and just as you walk in, they're gonna move it over just a bit, and it's still gonna all be there, if you want to buy something, you can totally do that. And then the art is just gonna be all around the place, and it's gonna be, like, you know, your -- definitely your cool artsy crowd are everybody schmoozes in the middle, maybe goes over, wanders, looks at the clothes and looks at the art as well.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Any particular artists you want to mention they're gonna want to be showing?
SETH COMBS: I don't know his real name, he goes by the name Exists 1981, and I'm a big fan of his. You've probably seen his work around town because he works primarily in street art. And he has this thing plastered on signs all over town that looks -- nobody really knows what it is, but it looks to me like Tim Curry from -- what's the -- sweet transvestite --
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Yes.
SETH COMBS: Rocky horror picture show. Yeah, thank you. And it looks like his face and it's plastered on signs all over.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: I've seen that.
SETH COMBS: Yeah. He's gonna have some of his work there. And, God, there's so many. I know we're kind of on a time limit here.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Okay. And I won't make you stretch your time there too much. I'm just let everybody know that sudden art gallery will be opening in the gas lamp this Friday night and there are lots of reasons to check it out. It's beer week, it's San Diego beer week, what happens during beer week?
LIZ BRADSHAW: Well, what happens during beer week. Well, this is actually the second annual San Diego beer week, and it rule is in honor of the many, many wonderful craft beers that are produced here. It's actually a ten-day celebration from November 5th to the fourteenth. And it's a county wide festival, celebrating and fostering knowledge of the local beer heritage. And it really provides a platform for all of San Diego's great breweries restaurants and pubs.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Now you're particularly excited about some of the events going on at stone brewery right.
LIZ BRADSHAW: Right. That's right. There were two that caught my eye.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Okay.
LIZ BRADSHAW: Food and beer events. Excellent. The first one is tomorrow morning. It's the rare beer breakfast. At stone brewery. It starts at nine AM. If you're interested in getting an early start to beer week. And so basically, and I promised this is not part of my normal breakfast routine, but there's 45 beers too choose from.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: That's a good breakfast selection.
SETH COMBS: It's like a beer buffet.
LIZ BRADSHAW: You get 15 tastes and a lavish breakfast buffet and live jazz on the patio. And if the weather stays like this, what a wonderful way to start the weekend.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Yes indeed.
SETH COMBS: A lot of stone beer it is I'd like to point out are like a meal in and of themselves. Their beers are very hearty.
LIZ BRADSHAW: Right.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Yes. Now I want to ask you if I may about this beer and chocolate event. That I feel is amazing.
LIZ BRADSHAW: Yes, that's excellent too. And so it's all local chocolatiers, there's Charal chocolate, the wonderful Eclipse Chocolatier, over on El Cajon Boulevard, and I am I pronounce this right, it's Guanni Chocolates as well. So they'll be pairing. If you go on line to the stone brewery website, there's a whole kind of tasting menu for both of these. And it tells you what all the food is, and also what the beer is as well. So I think there's, like, 4 or 5 different courses for the beer and chocolate tasting and you taste two beers with one chocolate from each of the chocolate ears.
SETH COMBS: I've actually been to one of these. It was a while ago. But the sentiment was similar. It's really cool. For me, and I know this is somewhat blasphemous to say this. I don't really like chocolate, crazy right in but this chocolate is so good. And when you taste it with the beer, it's pretty -- it's like your palette explodes in your mouth.
LIZ BRADSHAW: Right. And this chocolate, it's the real deal. It's proper chocolate, it's not, you know, like mass produced like eating a Mars bar and having a pint.
SETH COMBS: It's not a bad pairing at all.
Q. I want to tell everyone to visit stone brewery this weekend to start the San Diego beer week festivities. Now, we have a number of music acts that we're gonna talk about, but we are up against the clock here. Let's try to talk about transam and nice nice. They are playing the casbah tonight?
SETH COMBS: Sure, Trans-am is a bands originally from Bethesda Maryland, who'd been around since the early 90s 2010, I think marks their 20 years together. They're one of those bands who have really developed a cult following for their mix of cool electronic textures with instrumental or kind of hard post rock which nowadays is very popular. But back when they started doing this, it was just kind of unheard of. And there's a lot of more popular acts nowadays that kind of really owe them a debt of gratitude. Like there's rat tat immediately comes to mind. In my Monday, Ratatat wouldn't even sound the way they do if it wasn't for Transam. And as far as nice nice goes, they're originally from Baltimore, if I'm not -- oh, no no they're actually from Olympia Washington. That's not Baltimore at all. But they're now in Portland. And ah, geez, they are amazing. They have been around for ten years and they are yet to settle on a sound. I can't even describe them.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: I think the best thing for us to do is hear a little bit from nice nice when we are going out because we're really, really up against time right now. So I just want to let everybody know that transam and nice nice play the casbah tonight. And the heavy plays the Casbah this Sunday night. Liz, if you could encapsulate the heavy for us just a lot bit.
LIZ BRADSHAW: Yeah, sure. Actually also from the southwest of England just like Massive Attack, the heavy is a real, dirty soulful, plus filled funky rock band. Hip hop reggae influences for sure. Even sometimes think of, like, the specials and that kind of ska, when I'm listening to them. Funky horns just really awesome and fun rhythm and blues.
MAUREEN CAVANAUGH: Again, the Heavy will play the Casbah this Sunday night. And the things we didn't get a change to talk about, I just want to let people know they're happening, prohibited light is an art display that will be on display at Voz Alta gallery in Barrio Logan Saturday night, and the rumble show will be at bar pink on solid night. If you want to read more about these events, please go on-line to KPBS.org/These Days. I want to thank you both so much. Thank you Liz, thank you Seth, for coming in and speaking with us.
LIZ BRADSHAW: Thank you. Good to see you.