I don’t know how I overlooked it last year, but I learned in 2012 about “Fauxcella” the phenomenon that occurs in between and immediately preceding/following the two Coachella weekends, in which every band in the universe schedules dates in the Bay Area. Although I didn’t cough up half my budget to travel down the peninsula to see Radiohead, I did catch the following shows:
Jeff Mangum at Fox Theater: Disappointing due to the fact that this was a bad venue/artist match. The Fox is just too big for a very intimate singer/songwriter. With no seats on the floor, and Mangum sitting on the stage, you couldn’t even see more than an occasional glimpse of a pageboy cap between the crying hipsters. No doubt he’s an extremely talented artist, and we probably wouldn’t have The Decemeberists without Neutral Milk Hotel, but not a memorable show for me.
Mazzy Star at Regency Ballroom: I wish I could tell you how awesome this show was. I’m sure it was. I, unfortunately, was kept distracted by two extremely rude and socially inept British tourists the entire night. Hope’s still got it though, and I’d totally go see them again, but hopefully with different company.
Pulp at The Warfield: OMG. OMG. Seriously. I love Jarvis Cocker. This was the most amazing show EVAR. Heart heart heart! Like like like! No, really, I cannot even begin to tell you how amazing Pulp was. They didn’t ride off nostalgia, they actually rocked it. Hard. And Jarvis IS one of the best frontmen in rock. He possibly humped every item on the stage. Someone also legitimately threw a bra up there. In the running for my show of the year.
Wild Flag at The Fillmore: Carrie Brownstein is probably the coolest person on the planet. Is there anything that woman can’t do? I saw Sleater-Kinney at the end of their days, so awesome to catch a female supergroup at the height of their powers. Rawk.
Tune-Yards & St. Vincent at Fox Theater: Caught this the night after the SFIFF performance. Tune-Yards always kills and even brought adorable children on stage with them, but Annie Clark (St. Vincent), holy shit, stole the show. Ingrid remarked that she reminded her of a female Prince, and I have to agree. I saw her with Wren a few years ago in Milwaukee, and she’s truly transformed into a rock STAR. Definitely up there with the best guitarists I’ve ever seen. I will be adding St. Vincent to my NOT TO MISS show list henceforth.