Tag Archives: the oh sees

It’s finally that time, y’all and we’ll start rolling out all our end of year coverage and this year we’re starting with my top 10 gigs of the year. I saw a lot of great music this year, and practically no shitty music, which I think is a decided improvement upon 2009′s showing. 2010 brought me to shows in four states, two countries, seven cities and while my list features predominantly California bands, not one of my favorite shows of this year happened in Los Angeles. Here’s to the greatness of 2010 and the probability that 2011 will put it all to shame:


10 The Entrance Band @ Red 7, Austin, TX | March 18, 2010

Crazy acid rain haze Friday of SXSW ended with a smoky, incendiary set that did half justice to anything Jimi Hendrix started and that’s probably the best compliment I could give. Real psychy.

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09 The Jim Jones Revue @ Komedia Downstairs, Brighton, UK | October 6, 2010

A too-small-for-them, but, perfect-for-the-gig room echoing with real, dirty, sweaty, down home blues rock with spastic keys and the most magnetic front-man I’ve seen in, well, maybe ever. Older dudes showing us young kids how to fucking do it.

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08 Pavement @ The Fox Theatre, Pomona, CA | April 15, 2010

Pavement. Two hours. Three encores. Everything I wanted to hear except ‘Harness Your Hopes’. Does anything more need to be said?

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07 The Soft Pack @ The Freebutt, Brighton, UK | February 14, 2010

Some of LA’s best garage rippers came to Brighton to brighten (pun intended) the most horrible day of the year and cemented in my mind the fact that they get tighter and catchier every time I see them.

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06 Happy Birthday, Residual Echoes @ Tin Can Ale House, San Diego, CA | August 10, 2010

Tiny bar on a beautiful San Diego night, 30 people jumping madly for some of the best pop songs of the entire year. Best Happy Birthday show of the year. Subliminal Message!

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05 The Strange Boys @ Emo’s Jr., Austin, TX | March 17, 2010

Was a little nervous about hearing material from the 2nd album, which is definitely a grower — The Strange Boys wowed me as usual, converting me to a fan of Be Brave, and played the best material off their perfect first album. Also, this was one of the greatest dance parties I’ve ever had in my life to ‘Woe Is You And Me’.

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04 Happy Birthday, Fergus & Geronimo, Sex Beet, Thee Oh Sees @ Santos Party House, New York, NYC | September 20, 2010

Gig that wins the award for furthest traveled to see. Fergus & Geronimo were a bit meh, but still have at least two excellent songs; Happy Birthday ripped through some of the most underrated, gold pop songs. Sex Beet converted the sizable crowd of their first ever US show with their noisy and fuzzy as fuck jams that refuse to leave my head. And Thee Oh Sees. Hardest working, if not best live, garage band on the planet ruled the night playing fast and furious through tons of their best.

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03 The Black Lips @ Village Underground, London, UK | October 29, 2010

Typical crazy Black Lips show featuring a rowdy moshpit, tons of shoving and about a million stage invasions causing the PA to be turned off atleast once. London’s hipsters couldn’t even manage to be a blight upon the Black Lips though, as their countrified new material was the star of the show.

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02 tUnE-yArDs @ The Freebutt, Brighton, UK | February 9, 2010

There’s not many gigs where I know nothing of the artist, and end up walking up the wrong stairwell, grinning because of the fantastic showing. tUnE-yArDs wowed Brighton with her simulatenously tender and incredibly powerful voice, altogether homegrown brilliance, and intense and utter modesty. It was moving stuff.

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01 The Growlers @ Kung Fu Saloon | March 19, 2010

Even on the coldest day of South By, the Growlers set the brick patio of Kung Fu Saloon on fire after a spectacular 5 other showings at SXSW. ‘Sea Lion Goth Blues’, ‘Underneath Our Palms Blues’, ‘Mean People Suck’, fistpumping party, ski ball and cheap ass rum and cokes made this the only 12/10 showing of the entire year, cementing the Growlers are my absolute favorite band in the world.

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Vice is teaming up with some great LA people including LA Weekly, to bring us Los Angelinos what will probably end up being one of the top 3 gigs of December. Headliners OFF! will be supported by the ridiculously awesome Thee Oh Sees, who I adore retarded amounts and the fantastical/disugsting Nobunny. It’s also FUCKING FREE so there’s no excuse not to be there. It’s gonna rule. See you there.

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You guys, I’m crying of joy. As we all know, I’m trapped in probably the worst place ever where it’s freezing as fuck and it’s only going to get worse (I heard maybe SNOW on Saturday so consider this my suicide note) so the second wave of bands announced for SXSW 2011 is making me so goddamned excited for March. I can’t wait to don shorts and tank tops and skip through the streets of Austin seeing the following AMAZING bands which practically made me tear up out of joy, and the knowledge that I’ll be getting a 7 week spring break. Booyah.

The Bellrays (Los Angeles CA)
Demon’s Claws (Montreal CANADA)
Fergus & Geronimo (Brooklyn NY)
Grass Widow (San Francisco CA)
The Happy Hollows (Los Angeles CA)
J Mascis (Amherst MA)
JEFF The Brotherhood (Nashville TN)
La Sera (Los Angeles CA)
Quintron and Miss Pussycat (New Orleans LA)
The Strange Boys (Austin TX)
Thee Oh Sees (San Francisco CA)
Turbo Fruits (Nashville TN)
Ty Segall (San Francisco CA)
The Vaccines (London UK-ENGLAND)
Voxhaul Broadcast (Los Angeles CA)

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I just spent the past 25 minutes of my life checking out this fucking radical video that Vice is putting out in three parts over the next two days, and then will air in it’s entirety on the 25th. It’s called New Garage Explosion: In Love With These Times and it’s basically most of my favorite bands talking about other bands that I really like. You get to hear about/from Jay Reatard, Black Lips, Thee Oh Sees, and Ty Segall (well, and many more, but I love them!). It’s focusing on the garage communities in San Francisco, Oakland, Detroit, New York, Memphis, Atlanta and Portland. Notably, and sadly, excluded is Los Angeles. This is absolutely worth 25 minutes of your time. Watch it.


Photo Courtesy of | Chris Becker Jr

So last week, I went to New York for a few days out of mainly spite for this English weather that I completely forgot about, but also out of decadence withdrawals. However, this show at Santos Party house last Tuesday was also a big draw. Hi, do you see the lineup? It’s fucking amazing. It’s been a while since the show and I was pretty hammered (who does $7 for whiskey shot/beer?) so this is probably going to be (like everything else I do) the most unprofessional review ever.

Fergus & Geronimo was the only band on the bill I hadn’t seen before and I want to like them very much due to the fact that they hail from Denton, TX. I obviously didn’t know that they underwent some lineup changes (two added members, if I’m correct) and moved to Brooklyn. I wasn’t sure if it was just because they were the openers and hardly anyone was there, or if they had an off day — but the set was pretty meh. ‘Girls With English Accents’ was one of my favorite songs of the summer and is such a total sweet jam — it ended up being the best song of the set, and the total highlight for me but the rest didn’t work.

Happy Birthday are one of my favorite bands of the year. I think it’s because King Tuff is the epitome of cool and two of the best songs of 2010 are on that record. Live, Happy Birthday are give and take. In big venues, where nobody is super fucking excited to see them (see: Galaxy Room Backyard at SXSW, this night @ Santos Party House) they’re just medium. I think they’re one of the best live bands in a small, sweaty bar made to fit no more than 50 (see: Tin Can Ale House, San Diego). Unfortunately this was not one of the times. King Tuff is probably one of the most enjoyable performers that I’ve seen in quite some time — he just is a hot mess of awesome. ‘Girls FM’ is a lot less enjoyable when one person is pogoing around, ‘Perverted Girl’ is just flat out one of my favorite songs of the year and set-closer ‘Subliminal Message’ always leaves things on a better note than when they started. Looking forward to seeing them next month in London.

Sex Beet are probably the best band in the UK right now. This was their first ever show in America, but from the looks of it, things will probably go well. The whole crowd went into grateful punk spasms during their obviously not-long-enough-set. Super highlights include the two incredibly titled ‘I’m In Love With You (So Shut The Fuck Up)’ and ‘Nice Hair/Nice Titties’ which are as raucus and dirty as you can imagine. Best part of the set was for sure my favorite song, ‘Stay’ which if you haven’t heard already — get as soon as possible. Good things are coming to this band if not in the UK, then for sure in the US.

The Oh Sees. Ah. What do I even say about the Oh Sees? Both times I’ve seen them play have had the strangest sense of time – like, it feels like they play forever (in the best way imagineable) yet by the time they’re done you always end up wanting more. John Dwyer is a crazy motherfucker. They ended up playing to an extremely packed, sweaty crowd who just went pretty much wild for them. Apologies for the worst couple reviews ever, I got pretty drunk. Basically, this show was completely worth the 7 hour flight it took to get me there.

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Photo Courtesy of | Chris Collins

It’s getting very, very close to FYF Fest this year, and while most of these bands have been playing LA for quite some time over at the Echo/Echoplex/Spaceland, this still seems like a super dope event that, if I could, I would be attending. On this basis alone, I have concocted a schedule in which you can see the festival through my eyes. Though, why you would want to do that, I don’t know. Consider it our preview and listen to our recommendations and you’re guaranteed a good time.

12-O’clock Hour
Definitely get to the festival before 12:15 so you can catch England’s awkward, noisy lads, Let’s Wrestle 12:15-12:40 @ Sequoia Stage. Having seen them earlier in the year at Bootleg Theatre, I can tell you that earplugs are necessary, but their finely crafted pop songs sung in a completely distant, awkward tone really rule. Leave Let’s Wrestle a few minutes early to catch uber-buzzy, The Magic Kids 12:35-1:05 @ Oak Stage. Their debut album just dropped via True Panther and I’m loving their 60s pop, completely hook laced tunes.

1-O’clock Hour
You’re a complete fool if you miss The Growlers 1:20-150 @ Redwood Stage. You’ve been reading this blog long enough to know that I consider them to be the best band in the world and they have written some of the most perfect songs that I’ve heard. The kind where you hear it and go “Oh, I love this one!” after every single song. If I need to sell them to you any more, I’ve got an awesomely special post coming up which will introduce you to the best band ever.

2-O’clock Hour
The 2pm hour is a complete toss up. Well, no, I’d go see The Blow 2:15-2:45 @ Sequoia Stage. Khaela doesn’t tour very much, and I haven’t been able to see her since SXSW 2008, but her album ‘Paper Television’ is basically one of the best things ever. A truly intimate portrait of a tender, sweet singer with an incredible outlook on life and love. Although she won’t (probably) make this into the song-writing workshop that it was back in 08, where you could get a visual into what was going through her head as she wrote these songs, she won’t disappoint. Her voice is crystal clear and incredible live. If I wasn’t busy seeing that, I’d catch the weeded out Best Coast 2:15-2:45 @ Oak Stage.

3-O’clock Hour
PR’s Davilla 666 3:10-3:40 @ Oak Stage are guys I’ve been meaning to catch for ages now and just haven’t. Selling point: their on In The Red. That’s pretty much as strong of a recommendation I can give to a band I’ve never heard, but they rip, I’m sure.

4-O’clock Hour
I’m hoping Wavves 4:00-4:30 @ Oak Stage lacklustre performance at the Glasshouse a few weeks ago was just that — a one off. I’d still mosey down and try and catch his newly minted pop-punk, mall-rat stuff in the hopes that he’d play old timey stuff.

5-O’clock Hour
Ew! Super toss-up! I’d probably spring to go see The Soft Pack 4:50-5:25 @ Redwood Stage mainly because they’ve never, never disappointed live (and seeing them like 10 times would make me an expert, right?) and their album released earlier this year was excellent. The last set I saw on Valentines day ruled. LA pride, baby. However, The Oh Sees 4:50-5:25 @ Oak Stage were great at KSCR Festival down at USC earlier in the year, so that wouldn’t be a haphazard choice, either.

6-O’clock Hour
Off

7-O’clock Hour
Off

8-O’clock Hour
Off

9-O’clock Hour
Off

10-O’clock Hour
I have no clue how Panda Bear 10:20-11:15 @ Oak Stage sounds live, but Person Pitch has been on my stereo a lot this year and I’d wait my ass around FYF for four hours of boringness to see this cute little bear perform. Seeing ‘Carrots’ live would be an excellent highlight to the festival…


11-O’clock Hour

And finally, I’d probably stay for a little bit of my favorite weirdo hobbit Ariel Pink’s Haunted Grafitti 11:10-11:50 @ Sequoia set. His new album didn’t strike a super chord with me, but I love his old stuff.

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From our friends over at Stereogum: John Dwyer deserves a star on the underground garage-punk walk of fame. The San Francisco (via Providence) guitarist/vocalist brought the Pink to Pink And Brown, the fuzz and yelps to Coachwhips, and plenty of attitude to the Hospitals, Landed, weirdo faux-German duo Zeigenbock Kopf (with Iran’s Aaron Aites, now best known for the black metal documentary Until The Light Takes Us), etc. Outside of all of this, he started Thee Oh Sees (also once known as The Ohsees, OCS, etc.) as an outlet for his quieter home recordings. It was just a matter of time — and a few records — before it became another full-on band. The prolific quartet’s new album Warm Slime opens with a 14-minute title track earns its name, standing as one of my favorite single songs of the year, Dwyer and co-vocalist Brigid Dawson battling it out amid the epic, viscous ’60s psychedelia, rockabilly, and noise-rock haze. It’s easier to find your way into the punk garage with the briefer, also effective “Castiatic Tackle.” In 2009 they put out 10 releases of varying size and aesthetic on a bunch of different labels. It’s hard calling Warm Slime a followup to any single collection (or single), but think of it as Help’s amped-up, reverb-drenched older sibling.

Warm Slime is out 5/11 via In The Red. You’ll also find “I Was Denied” on it.

DOWNLOAD -> The Oh Sees – I Was Denied
DOWNLOAD -> The Oh Sees – Castiatic Tackle


And boy howdy, will you want to be there…..

3.20 – Austin, TX @ Mohawk Bar [Panache Booking SXSW Showcase ] Past Lives, Surfer Blood, Dam-Funk, Oh Sees, The Intelligence, Turbo Fruits, Small Black

Download -> The Intelligence – San Francisco (Pictured above)