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by Greg M. Schwartz

31 Jul 2015


Photo: Debi Del Grande

It was a beautiful night in the summer of 2015, but the harmonic convergences taking place had some feeling like it could have been the mid-’90s. Both the Smashing Pumpkins and Veruca Salt were launching summer tours in the Golden State during the week, lending 2015 an appealing retro vibe harkening back to the alt-rock glory days of the late 20th century.

Smashing Pumpkins bandleader Billy Corgan even had old pal Jimmy Chamberlin back in the mix on drums, leading to a renewed anticipation for the sonic power of the Pumpkins in their prime. The mercurial Corgan may not have made all the right moves over the years, but he always seems to make up for any missteps. Breaking up the Pumpkins in 2000 was an extremely disappointing move. But putting the band back together in 2007 even with only 50 percent of the original lineup was a great move for rock ‘n’ roll, as was mending fences to get Chamberlin back on board this year.

by Sachyn Mital

30 Jul 2015


As a fan of Guster since the late ‘90s, I’ve got a special place in my heart for the band. Their album Lost and Gone Forever remains their standout for me even as I have found gems on newer albums, like this year’s Evermotion the group’s first for Nettwerk. So when I they came around New York to perform at Summerstage in Central Park, I figured it would be an enjoyable show. And, despite the heat, it was.

by Sachyn Mital

29 Jul 2015


Hot off the release of his album Delilah, on producer Dave Cobb’s first release on his new imprint, Anderson East’s performance at the Mercury Lounge in July was full of vim and vigor. Though to be honest, East’s normal performance mode is already so fiery the set show is framed by his friend and guitarist Scotty Murray’s wild preaching.

East was in New York City from Nashville for his, at least, fourth time this year in the build up to Delilah and at this headlining tour stop, Icelandic band Kaleo opened for him. Kaleo don’t perform the typical moody or ethereal music that often comes from the island nation; their music is more folksy and Americana-esque which served as a perfect warm up for the rowdy performance that was to come. Kaleo’s actual set ended up shorter than what was written on the setlist in front of them but I was left curious enough to check them out again (the song “All the Pretty Girls” is a particular standout).

by Greg M. Schwartz

29 Jul 2015


Photo: Tommy Cahill

It was not just another Wednesday night at the Soda Bar, a dive with a tiny stage that rarely hosts a band with platinum album sales. Veruca Salt was launching their first tour with their original lineup since the 20th century, a cross-country trek that will take them to a number of more venerable venues. But San Diegans were thrilled to have a chance to help the band kick off the tour and word even had it that some hardcore fans had traveled many a mile to witness the tour opener.

by Sachyn Mital

24 Jul 2015


A rare live performance from UK electronic duo Basement Jaxx, packed in as much wild fun as they could before a 10pm curfew in Central Park. Apparently the band hadn’t performed live in New York for at least ten years (though they have come around for a DJ set at least). But unfortunately, for whatever reason, three openers (Fei Fei, Masters at Work and the Internet) were allotted time before Basement Jaxx, cutting into what could have been a longer set from the duo. When they finally went on around 8:45, Basement Jaxx had the crowd going crazy (one woman in the front row wore a unicorn horn). But for all the craziness offstage, there was more on stage, with outlandish costumes (including multiple gorillas at the end) and multiple kinds of dancers (including a ballerina) instead of the standard, trippy projected visuals other acts use.

//Mixed media
//Blogs

Smashing Pumpkins Rock for Revolution at Irvine Meadows

// Notes from the Road

"You know Corgan isn’t just going to play a greatest hits set and that’s to his credit, for a formidable catalog of deep cuts the Smashing Pumpkins have.

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