Interviews

Interview

HAROLD BUDD: SHOW ME WHERE I BELONG

August 21st, 2016

Harold Budd may be known to the world as an ambient "soft-pedal" piano playing collaborator of Brian Eno and the Cocteau Twins, but in plumbing the depths of his multi-faceted four-decade career, I discovered first hand perspective on everything from East L.A. in the 1940s to the pretentiousness of the minimalist avant garde movement of the 1960s to the celebration of artistry in 1980s Europe. Harold is playing his first show in his native Southern California in twelve years tonight with Bradford Ellis, Veda Hille and visual artist Jane Maru at Whittier College. This interview by Christina Gubala.

Interview

WYATT BLAIR: ONLY THE STRONG SURVIVE

August 3rd, 2016

If you don’t know Lolipop Records’ Wyatt Blair, here’s a simple introduction: if you like things like rock, pop, fun, guitars or being alive, you already have (or you need!) a copy of Blair’s Banana Cream Dream, which finally came out on vinyl last year after original issue on (of course) cassette. And if you liked Banana Cream Dream, you better strap on your fingerless gloves and tighten up your headband because Blair’s coming album Point Of No Return is gonna take you somewhere you’ve never been before. Point of No Return is out Friday on Burger and Lolipop, and Wyatt Blair performs all over Southern California this weekend. This interview by Chris Ziegler.

Interview

RICHARD HELL: ART IS ALL MISTAKES

July 29th, 2016

Richard Hell was the co-founder of Television, the original bassist in the Heartbreakers with Johnny Thunder, founder of the Voidoids—who introduced the world to singular guitarists Bob Quine and Ivan Julian—and of course one of the most recognizable faces (and bare graffiti-ed torsos) in New York City punk. But he was a writer before that and became a writer after that, as well, and his recent autobiography I Dreamt I Was A Very Clean Tramp is a deliberate and unsparing outsider coming-of-age story that fits nicely between Ed Sanders’ Tales of Beatnik Glory and Bob Dylan’s Chronicles Vol. 1. He’ll be reading a brand new work—inspired in part by the brutal noir of Jim Thompson—this Saturday at the Broad, with original musical accompaniment by the extremely appropriate Haxan Cloak. This interview by Chris Ziegler.

Interview

DEATH VALLEY GIRLS: HOLD HANDS WITH AN ALIEN

June 30th, 2016

(Before you read this interview, listen to Iggy Pop’s The Idiot—I’m not kidding! Do it!) Death Valley Girls are the resilient few who believed in rock ‘n’ roll in a way reminiscent of New York’s 70s punk scene and Patti Smith, Television, Dead Boys and Johnny Thunders and the Heartbreakers. (Who were all and still are my music heroes.) Their new full-length Glow In The Dark is available now from Burger and Death Valley Girls' record release show is June 30 at the Echo. This interview by Jacquelinne Cingolani with Kristina Benson.

Interview

MARTHA DAVIS: NOT TIED TO THE EARTH

May 20th, 2016

Martha Davis—the original ‘it girl’ of the New Wave—has been at this for 40 years. She’s still single-tracking her vocals, and writing music that can cut you. To hear her voice over the phone brings chills: L.A.’s ultimate femme fatale, one of the most gorgeous and enigmatic lead singers of all time, is talking to you. The girl who wrote “Total Control” and “Only the Lonely” is there, just a whisper away across a landline. In 1979 as L.A. punk was breaking, her band the Motels famously held court at Madame Wong’s and then shot to stardom. It only took them eight years on the Sunset Strip. The Motels perform Fri., May 20, at the Canyon Club and Sat., May 21, at the Yost Theater. This interview by Marion Belle.

Interview

HOLY GRAIL: METAL WILL ALWAYS BE THERE

May 11th, 2016

Pasadena’s Holy Grail wear their influences like a raggedy old back patch, deploying vocals as sharp and bright as polished steel and solos that sound like miniature symphonies in support of an uber-metal spectacle that owes its deepest debt to the New Wave of British Heavy Metal. But these dudes care at least as much about preserving metal’s hallowed past and they do about pushing their music forward: their long-anticipated new album Times of Pride and Peril shows a band balancing the sheer tonnage of their riffs with a focus on songcraft, and casting off a lot of baggage in the process. They perform on Mon., May 16, at the Regent. This interview by Chris Kissel.