San Diego Shows–Tuesday, December 1
PLAN A: J. Tillman, Pearly Gate Music, Joel P West @ The Casbah. Not to be ridiculously obvious, but success can be a funny thing. Take J. Tillman, who’s been releasing some solid records for years, but became the drummer for Seattle-based folkies Fleet Foxes, whose self-titled debut became one of the most talked-about indie releases of last year. Now that he’s “one of the guys from that band,” the music press seems disingenuously interested in talking with Tillman about his solo material, which has made him a bit stand-offish when it comes to interviews (see Carissa Casares’ great piece from this week’s issue). But whether you’re interested for the right reasons or not, Tillman’s newest record, Year in the Kingdom, is a gorgeous exercise that balances meditative lyrics and startling voice which at times can make you all but forget what other bands he plays in. To use a ridiculously obvious analogy: CSNY is great, but Neil Young’s pretty damn good on his own, doncha think? It’s also very much worth showing up early for local troubadour Joel P West. I still get goose bumps when I think about his performance at Sezio’s Live @ Luce Loft series in March (see video below). Come to think of it, I don’t think I’ve ever seen this guy give a bad performance, and what’s more, I probably listened to “28th and NE Davis” (off his 2008 album, Dust Jacket) more than any other local song last year. PLAN B: “Too Cool For Karaoke” Benefit for Rick Lyon @ Ruby Room. In case you’ve been living under a rock, someone stole Imperial House pianist Rick Lyon’s signature sign. Tonight’s karaoke session will also serve as a benefit to buy the man a new one so you can belt out “Welcome to the Jungle” and know it’s going toward a good cause. BACKUP PLAN: Hans Fjellestad, G.E. Stinson @ Sushi Performance & Visual Art. Electronic musician Hans Fjellestad’s compositions have been described as “aural graffiti”—apt, given that his music is subversive, not always pretty and has more going on than what’s on the surface. For the third part of Sushi’sFresh Sound Series, Fjellestad will be accompanied by G.E. Stinson, a longtime innovator in L.A.’s experimental / underground music scene. We’re not going to even try to describe what the show might be like and instead leave it up to Fresh Sound’s curator Bonnie Wright: “Fjellestad and Stinson create lush and pixelated textural frequencies that defy classification.” –Kelly Davis
OTHER COOL STUFF:
Distilled Spirits, Kera and The Lesbians, Danica and The Dusty Highway Band @ Tin Can Ale House.
Gilbert Castellanos Quintet @ Onyx Room
Izzy & The Kestronics, Peg Leg Love @ Beauty Bar.
Blue In The Face, The Otisturbine @ Radio Room.
Hey Ho, Let’s Go! @ Stage.
Zimbeat @ Soda Bar