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When things get weird: X-Day, Weird Al, and more

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Today is weird. It’s in that black hole gap between a nationally recognized holiday (er, Fourth of July) and the actual weekend, which begins for many traditional workers around 5pm on Fridays. So with this weirdness, we celebrate both X-Day, a parody of cult holidays, and the more literal, Weird Al -- he shines down on the Alameda County Fair tonight with a beam of frizzy light. Read more »

Instrumental duo Silian Rail includes 'every/one'

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Do artists need vocals and lyrics to demand audience attention in a place like the Bay Area, where there are new musicians popping up left and right? Eric Kuhn and Robin Landy, better known as instrumental duo Silian Rail, have found the answer to that question to be a resounding “no.” Read more »

Breathe Owl Breathe's newest project is a dark, DIY children's book

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Breathe Owl Breathe, the ethereal, off-folk-band from the Lower Peninsula of Michigan, is on tour promoting its recent project, The Listeners/These Train Tracks — a children’s book with accompanying two-song record. Fans familiar with the band will not be surprised to hear it made a book for kids, or that the two stories are surreal and odd. The Listeners is about a mole and an ostrich – one blind, the other only technically a bird –  that find each other in the darkness and form a band. Read more »

Mark Sultan (BBQ) on vitamins, 'Seinfeld,' and the death of rock'n'roll

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Mark Sultan is an embattled crusader for true rock'n'roll. Though in prose, he'll have you believe that it must be destroyed – to save it from itself. Read more »

We love the sound: Wild Flag will play the Great American Music Hall

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Back in 2010, when the members of Wild Flag initially started playing music with one another, whether a band would be forged or not wasn’t altogether clear. Carrie Brownstein, Rebecca Cole, and Janet Weiss (all from Portland, Ore.) had been writing the score for art documentary !Women Art Revolution when they tapped Mary Timony, who lived in Washington D.C., to record vocals. One project naturally led to the other. Read more »