Phantogram Turn Up Oakland’s Fox Theater

 

Photos by Kola Shobo
Words by Brandon Diaz

Hot off the presses with their second full-length release entitled Voices, the Upstate New York duo brought that boom to a sold out room.

The night kicked off with a mild dose of dream pop by opener White Sea. Fronted by the sultry M83 vocalist, Morgan Kibby, their 80’s-esque tunes wafted through the theater as the cool kids piled in quickly, eager to be close for the headliners. The trio played a near seamless set of agreeable tunes, including “Mountaineer,” just mellow enough to classify as chill, but gallant enough to command attention through bold falsettos, and confident drumming.

But even with garnering fair attention from an audience eager for the main event, the showstopper of White Sea’s set wasn’t their nocturnal, yet dancy “Cannibal Love,” but rather Kibby’s gold Wonder Woman belt and midnight purple pants-gown that drew eyes to the stage.

…and then there was that one group.

With her donning a cropped black and white leather jacket and him sporting crisp white button up and classic Fender guitar, Sarah Barthel, and Josh Carter, better known as Phantogram, brought their unparalleled sound machine to a very excitable Oakland crowd.

Read the rest after the jump

Mayer Hawthorne Brings the Soul Brigade to Oakland + Photos

 

Photos by Kola Shobo
Words by Brandon Diaz

As if Oakland needed any more soul, they sure got it from Mayer Hawthorne‘s stellar performance at the Fox Theater in Oakland’s Uptown district.

The evening began with a brief but lively performance from curly-haired songstress, Gavin Turek, who strode about the stage with Tina Turner flair in a stunning lavender dress. As the theater filled, Danish soul duo Quadron stole swoons from the packed house as vocalist Coco O. took center stage with a stunning sequined ensemble and ruby red lips.

Their 45-minute set was filled with lively songs from 2013’s Avalanche, all ears clinging to Coco’s angelic voice, eyes affixed to her striking pant-suit dress and tasteful fingerwaves. Sans producer Robin Hannibal (technically one-half of the band), Quadron held attention as they ran through a set that included “LFT,” “Sea Salt,” and a breathtaking cover of Lauryn Hill’s “Ex-Factor.”

And as that sweet perfume of soul music washed the crowd, Quadron finished, allowing Mayer Hawthorne and his backing four-piece band to bring the funk.
Emerging from a glowing broken heart at center stage, the Detroit-area native brought a convivial night of neo-Motown to the Fox. Sporting a royal blue two-button suit and a pair of Nike Air-Max sneakers, Hawthorne lead his band through a nonstop set of grooves that kept hands in the air with continuous jams from his sing-a-long songbook.

Read the rest after the jump

New Release: Shortcircles – ‘Shortcircles’ EP

 

Shortcircles (Matt Tammariello) is an Oakland based producer recently signed to Plug Research. In celebrating his new journey, he’s released his self-titled Shortcircles EP, a woozy, buzzing mash of soulful electronic tunes. Think a melange of Teebs, DJ Shadow, and 50s jazz records.

Purchase Shortcircles EP on iTunes

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Drunken Monkey ft. Chrys-Anthony – ‘Diggin’ Pony’ EP

 

Oakland producer Drunken Monkey and San Francisco vocalist Chrys-Anthony have combined forces to create a dazzling work with an inimitable sound. The title track, “Diggin’ Pony,” explodes with Chrys-Anthony’s signature primal scream and Jeff “DJ F” Straw’s saxophone blasts. Jazzy, funky, and soulful, the Diggin’ Pony EP (released through Splintered Tree Records, August 1st) boasts a force to be reckoned with. Drunken Pony’s production pulls you out of your seat and Chrys-Anthony’s stylings hold a gripping depth similar to Cee-Lo Green’s.

Drunken Monkey ft. Chrys-Anthony – “Diggin’ Pony”
 

Purchase the Diggin’ Pony EP on Splintered Tree Records

Splintered Tree Records

Artist Spotlight: Anais Aida + Videos

 

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The Senegalese and French vocalist, Anais Aida, has journeyed from Toulouse, France to Oakland to New York City to develop her skill and pursue her dreams as a musician. Above we share with you a gorgeous cover of Janelle Monae’s “Say You’ll Go” that she’s put together with Queens-based producer, DannyBe. Currently at NYU, Anais and her partner, Alejandro Ghersi, are crafting their debut with a single and video called “Love Can Burn” planned for this summer. Anais has also announced she’ll be releasing four covers this month, the first being Anthony David’s “As Above So Below,” which you’ll find after the jump. New talent is always so inspiring!

watch Aida’s Anthony David cover after the jump