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A stompbox inspired delirium: The Stargazer Lillies, play The Echo on 06.12

Listening to the brand new album 'Door to the Sun' by PA via New York trio The Stargazer Lillies is an experience comparable to getting lost in the fog. The fog, in this circumstance, is of the aural kind, created by an over-abundance of guitar effects employed (very unsparingly) by guitarist John Cep, formerly of Soundpool. The trio will be performing at The Echo on June 12 and then the following day at San Diego's Hideout.

Check out our sister blog's Delicious Audio Q&A with The Stargazer Lillies about their favorite guitar pedals!


Higuera share their hidden gem “Always Have a Secret Plan”

Bringing back the raw alt-rock tunes from the early 2000’s, Higuera’s genuine passion for creating fresh sounds and heart-wrenching lyrics transpires in all 4 tracks of their EP “Always Have a Secret Plan.” The 5-piece band showcase a flair for writing honest and relatable lyrics, the kind we lay in bed listening to late at night because they simply pierce the heart like a double edged sword. Their most notable track, “Pieces”, starts and ends with a steady beat that evokes a feeling of anticipation, while vocalist and founder Valley Taylor melodically unravels the many stages of love and life. Natives to sunny Southern California, Higuera unveil memorable tracks that show their love for creating music for the sake of the art. - Yesenia Carvajal

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Live Review: Litronix at Alex's Bar 6/02

The low lights, the simultaneously nefarious but comforting red walls and the general atmospheric qualities that Alex’s Bar exude were appropriate for the mind-altering ambient session that took place on Thursday night. Breatherrr took the stage first, delivering a mesmerizing, spacey sequence of songs. The instrumentals tended to lull you into a state of transcendence before bringing you back to reality with the unexpected. I/O’s dreamy, darkly bohemian songs each built up with intriguing layers and their set was truly dynamic, incorporating upbeat, dark, dreamy and aggressive elements.

Litronix closed the show with their interesting blend of psychedelic electronica, which created an enigmatic, energetic atmosphere reminiscent of a cult meeting (in the best way possible). Absorbed, the audience danced along to the beat and enthusiastically participated when the singer came offstage to dance with some and stare penetratingly into the eyes of many in the crowd. When the bright lights came back on, it took some time to adjust to the absence of other-worldliness that ambient music provided, and for a few moments we stood blinking, as if woken from a trance. - Lauren Weiherer


Live Review: Secret Garden at Harvard & Stone 5/25

Last Thursday night saw voodoo surf thrashers Sunshine Mind, the proggy serotonin fueled semi-locals Deep Fields, and an angsty Matryoshka doll of chaos and boozy guitars called Secret Garden bring their own very different sounds and concoctions of influences out to Harvard and Stone. From opener Sunshine Mind's sprinkling of screamed vocals that irreverently tear apart any false assumptions of conventional SoCal surf band tropes to Secret Garden's swampy, somber quietness giving way—rather violently—to nervous, sinewy guitar improvisations. And that's to say nothing of Deep Field's brilliant ‘70s inspired Rhodes piano odyssey that set the whole of Harvard and Stone on fire three-quarters into their set. Sunshine Mind ripped through groovy and pummeling (yet still very surfy) tunes with gusto. Think Misfits if they traded in corpse paint for plaid and California "good vibrations". Singer Henry Lopez peppered in energetic screaming vocals to break up melodic "ooh-ahh" lines that never let you get too comfortable in your expectations. A menacing undertone permeates their more-aggressive-than-your-average surf pop songs, torn apart and reassembled with ‘60s voodoo menace.

Next up were the brilliant Deep Fields hailing from Orange County. Their lush songwriting and layered piano accompaniments is a shot of serotonin to the proverbial arm of Harvard and Stone. Kaleidoscopic, Rush-reminiscent arrangements and a genuinely fun energy pulses alongside ‘70s Rhodes piano lines that are at once elegant and yet bursting like rays of light shining down on grooving flower beds of vocal and guitar melody. If 12-string electric guitar and Rhodes piano don't make the most pleasant sounding musical combination, I don't know what does. Secret Garden finished out the night with a set of swampy, troubled, mercurial jams laced with a "fuck-it-all" ethos. Singer Dani Evans was full to bursting with gravitas as she commanded a strong stage presence both fearless and fierce, going from skate punk ferocity to genuinely somber moments of singer-songwriter affectation. Ultimately, they got cut off early (and not entirely without reason) but this band—and Evans especially—has some serious heart. - Andrew Mendoza

 


Prison Escapee shares new single "Gunslinger", debut LP out 6/16

"Gunslinger" is a pensive meditation that ruminates on taking love with you to a new place. Blanketed with a soft layer of minimal synths, lo-fi bedroom recorder Erik David Hidde, who goes by Prison Escapee, sings with a calm demeanor, with a slightly indistinct delivery that only adds to the song's shimmering dreamscape. There's a certain uncertainty lingering through his mind, though he's more so eager and expectant of what is to come.

This is the second reveal off of Prison Escapee's forthcoming album Disappearing Mountaintop, which will be self-released on June 16. Take a listen to "Gunslinger" below.

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