Music

On the Rise: Nu Dekades

"Sometimes the beat has a life of its own"

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"If Rakim and MC Lyte had a baby" is the short version, when you ask the Oakland duo Nu Dekades -- made up of writer-emcees RyanNicole and K.E.V., for Kickin' Every Verse -- for a description of their sound. But the longer version is worth hearing, too.Read more »

On the Rise: Tony Molina

Teenage Fanclub-inspired pop from a Bay Area hardcore veteran

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Hedonistic breakdowns and riffs similar to Thin Lizzy? Check. Songwriting and vocal delivery reminiscent of Guided by Voices and Weezer? Double check. These traits (along with a few other things) are what make for the musical genetic makeup of Tony Molina's bedroom pop solo project.Read more »

On the Rise: Annie Girl & the Flight

"Slow, hypnotic folk and/or loud, trance-inducing art-rock"

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The first time I saw Annie Girl & the Flight play, I started thinking about what it is, exactly, that makes a frontwoman: Annie Girl's voice is a disaffected sing-song (Mazzy Star meets Kathleen Hanna?) that belies a dark, jagged well of feeling at the heart of the music; that's surely front and center, layered over bandmate Josh Pollock's slow-building wall of guitar. Read more »

On the Rise: Useless Eaters

"Angular punk"

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"On the Rise" almost feels inappropriate for Useless Eaters, since it began in 2008 as Seth Sutton's bedroom recording project in Memphis, Tennessee. On the scene (now that its founding and creative force relocated to the Bay Area last year) and ready to take over might be a more appropriate description.Read more »

On the Rise: CATHEDRALS

"Electronic pop with a healthy dose of R&B and indie rock"

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Without a doubt, the award for "most buzz generated from the most modest amount of music that's actually out in the world so far" goes to CATHEDRALS, an electro-pop duo that has about 4000 fans on Facebook at the time of this writing...and all of two (excellent) singles on SoundCloud, the most recent of which, "Harlem," was released three weeks ago and is approaching 180,000 plays.Read more »

On the Rise: Meklit Hadero

"Jazz, soul, folk, art rock...I walk the road of hyphens"

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How to describe a Meklit Hadero performance? Warm, bluesy upright bass; bright trumpet and saxophone. Elements of classic '60s folk by way of acoustic guitar, a lean toward R&B and soul, lyrics that blend personal and political, the intimate and the universal. The unmistakable influence of the music of Ethiopia — the singer's country of birth — shapes her music as it darts between genres. Read more »

On the Rise

Spaced-out electro-pop, Ethiopian-influenced jazz, feminist hip-hop, and a string quartet partial to Radiohead: 11 Bay Area artists who will keep you on your toes this year

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Year of the Workhorse

Different Fur Studio owner Patrick Brown saddles up for 2014

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Photos by Erin Conger

arts@sfbg.com

Patrick Brown, sound engineer and owner of the Mission's Different Fur Studios, is a busy guy — both literally a man about town, as well as on the internets. I've started calling him the Santa Claus of social medias — always watchin' his friends' web behaviors, good, bad, whatever. He's consistently first to like posts and favorite tweets, while simultaneously pulling off epic shifts in the studio.Read more »

Find some poetry

Sun Kil Moon's Mark Kozelek grapples with life and death on his rawest, most intimate album yet

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All together now

With Burn Your Fire For No Witness, indie-folk It Girl Angel Olsen embraces a full-band sound

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arts@sfbg.com

As she stares down the remainder of what's sure to be the busiest year of her career, Angel Olsen's new digs are helping calm any potentially frayed nerves.

"It's so mellow here, and people just don't give a shit," says the indie-folk singer about her new home of Asheville, N.C. "They build campfires and go to softball games or DJ nights. It's nice after so much traveling to go somewhere that's not a huge city."Read more »