Given the dark, shadowy melodies by New York City's Phantogram, a concert at a cemetery was fitting for New York duo. Friday night, Phantogram performed in front of a sold-out crowd at Hollywood Forever Cemetery.


Perez calls Kiesza his favorite singer of 2014. Nominated for an MTV VMA for her video "Hideaway" for Best Choreography Kiesza video has already amassed over 92 million views!


Fans at the packed Echoplex on Sunday and left sweaty and exhausted after Shiny Toy Guns played for over an hour and fifteen minutes for their hometown crowd.


It's usually rare to see a venue packed very early for an opening band, especially for a band that was only peforming their second show ever.


Samsaya was on tour supporting her recently released self-titled EP (via BMG) that echoes her Bollywood heritage and her love of hip-hop and pop. It's a fusion of all the music she grew up with and when you listen to how she melds all the genre's together it's catchy as hell and will be hard to get out of your head.

Sunday, September 14, 2014


Brodie Jenkins and Johnny Hwin of Cathedrals

It's usually rare to see a venue packed very early for an opening band, especially for a band that was only performing their second show ever.  Cathedrals did just that last last Wednesday at The Echo in Los Angeles.  

Consisting of Brodie Jenkins and Johnny Hwin, Cathedrals have been together for about a year. Their social media footprint is basically non-existent except for a Soundcloud page and a Facebook page that (at this writing) has only 7,110 likes.  

Cathedrals' Brodie Jenkins and Johnny Hwin
Cathedrals' Brodie Jenkins and Johnny Hwin perform their first Los Angeles show at The Echo.
photos by picksysticks
Yet, their debut EP, recently released September 8th, has been generating a lot of buzz on the blogo-sphere.  It spawned synth-pop singles "Harlem, "Unbound," and "Want My Love."

Wednesday's show, you can say, felt like an spiritual experience. Their songs does so much with its sheer simplicity before soaring into a wall of ethereal soundscapes.  Hauntingly beautiful and layered with Jenkins' powerful and sultry vocals, their melodies are as colorful as sunlight shining through a stained glass window. 

Listen to their EP below. 


Thursday, September 11, 2014


Shiny Toy Guns' Chad Petree and Carah Faye Charnow

Fans at the packed Echoplex on Sunday left sweaty and exhausted after Shiny Toy Guns played for over an hour and fifteen minutes for their hometown crowd.  It began earlier in the day when their loyal following began lining up hours before the doors opened, a line that eventually stretched around the corner by the time doors opened well past 8pm.  That's quite an accomplishment for a band whose last album was released two years ago.  But if that seemed so long ago, it seemed like their fans didn't care.  

Carah Faye Charnow of Shiny Toy Guns
All that really mattered this night was the music which Shiny Toy Guns gladly offered up to the hungry crowd.  They stormed out of the gates kicking fast and heavy with dance-heavy beats like "Speaking Japanese," "Ricochet" and their one of their most famous hit singles "Le Disko."  

And with their onslaught of roaring guitars, driving drums and pulsating synths in songs like "Ghost Town," "Carrie" and "Starts with One" the night  saw singer Carah Fay Charnow and Chad Petree sharing vocal duties and peppering their set with covers like with Depeche Mode's "Stripped" and "Major Tom" by Peter Schilling.

But some of the highlights of the night was when the group slowed down, flaunting their softer, melodic side with rock ballads like "If I Lost You," "Don't Cry Out" and "Fading Listening" that showcased Petree's crooner vocals.   

Also led by the sparkplug of a front-woman Charnow, Shiny Toy Guns performed nearly 20 songs old and new from their 2006 breakthrough, Grammy-nomited debut album We Are Pilots, 2008's Season of Change to their most recent /// which was released in 2012.

Chad Petree of Shiny Toy Guns
Chad Petree of Shiny Toy Guns performs at Echoplex
photos by picksysticks
After touring for over a year, most recently with Paramore on their "Parahoy!" four-day cruise which also featured Tegan and Sara and New Found Glory, Charnow mentioned to the crowd that she was glad to be home.  "I love playing Los Angeles. It's home," she said. "It's very dear to me. This is my home."  

After over an hour playing, they returned to the stage for a three song encore and finished off the night with "Rainy Monday" and "You Are The One."  

Monday, September 8, 2014


Screaming Females

They shred with precise efficiency under the blinding, siezure-astic strobes. Ordered chaos with laser sighting concentration.  Tormenting punk-rock melodies sewn with sharp, Van Halen-like riffs, pint-sized front-woman Marissa Paternoster screams and thrashes without abandon.  But although it seems like they're raising anarchy onstage it's Screaming Females' sense of control that impresses most, like a well trained knife juggler, you cant' take your eyes off them - sooner or later they may draw blood. 

If you haven't seen Screaming Females live yet, you are definitely missing out.  The New Brunswick trio just announced they're heading out on a national tour with PUJOL beginning in October.  Over 30 dates in one month that will take them to both coasts taking them to major cities like Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Brooklyn, New Orleans and Philadelphia.  

Check out the raucous live “Boyfriend” video below filmed during the “Live At the Hideout” performance, for a taste of what to expect on tour.

"Boyfriend" by Screaming Females

Screaming Females Tour Dates with PUJOL
10/03: Baltimore, MD @ Ottobar (U+N Fest)
10/04: Brooklyn, NY @ Knitting Factory*
10/05: Pittsburgh, PA @ Mr Roboto Project*
10/06: Columbus, OH @ Ace of Cups*
10/07: Chicago, IL @ Logan Square Auditorium*
10/08: Minneapolis, MN @ Triple Rock Social Club*
10/09: Spearfish, SD @ Back Porch*
10/10: Denver, CO @ Lost Lake Lounge*
10/11: Boise, ID @ The Crux*
10/13: Portland, OR @ Holocene*
10/14: Olympia, WA @ Obsidian*
10/15: Seattle, WA @ Black Lodge*
10/17: Oakland, CA @1234 Go!*
10/18: San Francisco, CA @ Hemlock Tavern*
10/19: Los Angeles, CA @ Los Globos*
10/20: San Pedro, CA Harold's*
10/21: Tucson, AZ @ The Flycatcher*
10/23: Austin, TX @ Red 7*
10/24: Houston, TX @ Walter’s Downtown*
10/25: New Orleans, LA @ Community Records Block Party*
10/26: Cleveland, MS @ Green Room (Delta State University)*
10/27: Birmingham, AL @ Seasick Records*
10/28: Nashville, TN @ The Stone Fox*
10/30: Ybor (Tampa), FL @ Pre-Fest 2
10/31: Gainesville, FL @ FEST 13
11/01: Atlanta, GA @ 529 Bar*
11/02: Raleigh, NC @ Kings Barcade*
11/03: Richmond, VA @ Strange Matter*
11/04: Washington, DC @ Black Cat*
11/05: Philadelphia, PA @ Johnny Brenda’s*
11/06: Cambridge, MA @ TT The Bear’s Place*
11/07: Providence, RI @ Spark City*
11/08: Asbury Park, NJ @ Asbury Lanes*

*=with PUJOL



With the announcement of their new EP dropping this January, LA's Monogem just premiered their newest single "Stay With Me" on Noisey.  "Stay With Me" is a dreamscape of shimmering synth-pop that'll make you believe that dreams can come true, as front-woman Jen Hirsh tells Noisey the song  "was inspired by that magnetic love that tends to hit you like a bus."

Listen and read the rest of the article at Noisey right HERE.


Sunday, September 7, 2014

PHANTOGRAM @ Hollywood Forever Cemetery

Phantogram's Sarah Barthel
Phantogram's Sarah Barthel performs at Hollywood Forever Cemetery.
photo by picksysicks
Given the dark, shadowy melodies by New York City's Phantogram, a concert at a cemetery was fitting for New York duo. Friday night, Phantogram performed in front of a sold-out crowd at Hollywood Forever Cemetery - a site that's fast becoming one of Los Angeles' best venues for nightly concerts and film screenings given throughout the year.

Phantogram performs "Bill Murray"during their show at Hollywood Forever Cemetery.
photos by picksysticks
Known for their visual and electric live shows, Phantogram has slowly built their loyal following since the release of their debut album Eyelid Movies in 2009.  Shimmering guitars that pave the way for diamond-laced, synth-pop was showcased with an even extravagant light show in front of the sold-out crowd willing to brave sitting a few feet from tombstones.  One of the highlights was during "Bill Murray" when Sarah donned a floor-length throw covered with diamond-shaped mirrors as golden spotlights bounced off her like shooting stars.

No doubt one of the busiest groups in music today, Phantogram, consisting of Sarah Barthel and Josh Carter, have been touring constantly since their sophomore release of Voices earlier this year.  Their busy touring schedule also had them performing at some of the biggest music festivals this summer including Firefly, Lollapalooza and the upcoming Austin City Limits.  And starting in November, Phantogram will take their tour overseas for their European tour with stops in Germany, France and the UK.

Phantogram's Sarah Barthel.
photo by picksysticks

Thursday, September 4, 2014


Check out the cool new video for the even catchier song by Canada's acclaimed pop, multi-instrumentalist singer Lights.  The song "Up We Go" is the first single off Lights' third studio album Little Machines which drops Septebmer 23rd via Warner Brothers Records.  She begins her fall tour next month.

Shot in one long three and a half minute take set inside an elevator, the video for "Up We Go" seemingly takes Lights up 16 floors where, at each floor, unique characters come and go. But it isn't until the end when we realize that the entire video is entirely done with a little movie magic!!!  Watch towards the end to see the surprising reveal!!!

"Up We Go" official music video from LIGHTS.

Lights Fall 2014 US Tour Dates:
10/24 Portland, ME - Port City Music Hall
10/25 Boston, MA - Paradise Rock Club
10/29 New York, NY - Irving Plaza
10/31 Asbury Park, NJ - Stone Pony
11/01 Baltimore, MD - Rams Head Live!
11/02 Philadelphia, PA - Theatre of the Living Arts
11/04 Detroit, MI - St. Andrews Hall
11/05 Chicago, IL - House of Blues
11/07 Denver, CO - The Summit Music Hall
11/08 Salt Lake City, UT - The Complex
11/11 Los Angeles, CA - The Fonda Theatre
11/13 San Francisco, CA - Grand Ballroom at Regency Center
11/14 Portland, OR - Aladdin Theater
11/15 Seattle, WA - Showbox At The Market

Wednesday, September 3, 2014



One of my favorite albums this year was About Last Night from Sleeper Agent - the six-piece band from Kentucky. With sixties pop-beats that channel the Liverpool-esque era, Sleeper Agent, who also captures the height of the MTV, pop-80s vibe that defined a music generation has forged a sound all their own. 

In a new video posted yesterday, Alex Kandel's usual powerful vocals is toned-down to an almost delicate whisper on Sleeper Agent's fragile rendition of "I Wanna Get Better" by Jack Antonoff of Bleachers. Check it out below.

"I Wanna Get Better" cover by Sleeper Agent

Tuesday, September 2, 2014


Smoosh perform at SXSW in 2011.
Sisters Asya and Chloe who make up Chaos Chaos are somewhat of legend in the music blogosphere, championed by music taste-makers who gush in wonderment at their raw talents. 
Only in their early 20s, they've already toured with Death Cab for Cutie, Sleater-Kinney, Cat Power and Pearl Jame.   We first saw them when they performed as Smoosh at SXSW.  Now, the siblings, who tout a cult-like following just previewed their synth-pop single "Breaker" and it's easy to see why they have so much buzz surrounding them.  It premiered today on Noisey and you can listen to the single and download for FREEE below or right HERE.  "Breaker" is off their upcoming EP Committed to the Crime which is expected to drop on October 7th. 


Thursday, August 28, 2014


Zola Jesus
Zola Jesus performs at 2012's Culture Collide.
photo by picksysicks
Zola Jesus just debuted her new video on  Her new video for "Dangerous Days" is surprisingly very pop-centric which is a contrast to her usual calming melodies which are peppered with delicate synths painting a rustic and industrial landscape.  According to Vogue, Zola Jesus (aka: Nika Danilova) experiments with pop music for her upcoming album Taiga which drops October 7th. 
 Check out the video below.

"Dangerous Days" official video by Zola Jesus

Wednesday, August 27, 2014


Recently, Pitchford named Grimes' song "Oblivion" as the best song of the decade so far beating out powerhouse bands like Daft Punk's "Get Lucky" with Pharrell, Kanye West's "Monster," Nicki Minaj, Beyonce and Frank Ocean.  

That song was off her third studi album Visions which dropped in 2012.  Currently, she's working on the follow-up to Visions with a reported release date of Sept 9th. Today, she released a new video for "Go" featuring Blood Diamonds.  Check it out below. 

"GO" feat. Blood Diamonds by Grimes



Singer Elliphant is the latest musical sensation to come out of the Swedish pop scene.  Influenced by London's urban music environment, Elliphant (aka: Ellinor Olovsdotter) fused those urban sounds with her dance/ dubsteb background to create a sound all her own. And it's those imaginative and catchy melodies in songs like "Ciant Hear It" that  has brought the attention from Diplo, Dr. Luke and even Skrillex who all, have since worked and written songs together. Her tunes, like her live shows, are filled with attitude and  struts in your face unabashadly.   Recently, she released the official music video for "Only Getting Younger" which was produced by Skrillex.  The video shows Elliphant reacting to anesthesia  during a dentist visit where she wakes up to demented visuals of dancing doctors and a rave-plagued dentist office. Check out the video below.

This week, Elliphant launched her fall tour supporting Charli XCX.  21 cities which will take her through major cities like Boston, New York, Toronto, Miami, Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

"Only Getting Younger" by Elliphant feat. Skrillex.

Elliphant Tour dates w/Charli XCX
09/26 Orlando, FL - The Social *
09/27 Miami, FL - Culture Room *
09/29 Jacksonville, FL - Freebird Live *
09/30 Charlotte, NC - Amo's Southend *
10/02 Washington, DC - 9:30 Club *
10/03 Philadelphia, PA - Theatre of Living Arts *
10/04 Boston, MA - Royale Boston *
10/07 New York, NY - Webster Hall *
10/09 Montreal, QC - Cabaret du Mile End *
10/10 Toronto, ON - The Hoxton *
10/11 Detroit, MI - St. Andrew's Hall *
10/13 Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall *
10/14 St. Louis, MO - The Ready Room *
10/16 Houston, TX - Fitzgerald's Downstairs *
10/17 Austin, TX - Emo's *
10/18 Dallas, TX - Tree's *
10/20 Phoenix, AZ - Crescent Ballroom *
10/21 San Diego, CA - House of Blues *
10/24 Los Angeles, CA - El Rey Theatre *
10/25 San Francisco, CA - Slim's *
10/27 Portland, OR - Wonder Ballroom *
* with Elliphant, FEMME

Monday, August 25, 2014


Perez Hilton's "One Night In"  music series had it's early beginnings in L.A. in 2007.  A year later, he took it for the very first time to Austin's SXSW Music festival where it has now become an annual event. And since then Perez Hilton has taken the series and branched it out to cities like Brooklyn and Los Angeles where it has sold out in mere minutes even before an actual lineup has been announced.    

Saturday night, a star-studded event returned to Los Angeles at The Troubadour boasting a star-studded guest list and some of the music industry's hottest musical acts. 

Kiesza headlined "One Night In Los Angeles" hosted by Perez Hilton.
photo by Picksysticks
Perez, a self-confessed music junkie, has been responsible for breaking the biggest artists in the past - Lily Allen, Regina Spektor and Amy Weinhouse to name a few.  And last Saturday was no different, curating a music lineup of his favorites, who if history holds true, will become the most buzzed about acts this year.  Performing this night were Kiesza, Tove Lo, Rixton, Echosmith, Matthew Koma and Bebe Rexha. 

Tove Lo
Perez calls Kiesza his favorite singer of 2014. Nominated for an MTV VMA for her video "Hideaway" for Best Choreography Kiesza video has already amassed over 92 million views!  If you watch it you can see why.  

The video, shot in one complete 5 minute take shows Kiesza walking down the streets of Brooklyn dancing and singing with a cast of other dancers during this catchy dance tune.  Kiesza performs this Tuesday at the sold out Roxy.  

With a highly anticipated debut album Queen of the Clouds dropping on September 30th, Swedish sensation Tove Lo stormed onto the music scene with her critically acclaimed EP Truth Serum, an album that launched worldwide dance hits  "Not On Drugs" and "Habits" which was recently certified RIAA Gold and currently approaching Platinum status.  

Give it to the Swiss to write the soundtrack to our weekend.  Tove Lo is yet another, in a string of recent Scandinavian acts, to bless this world with super catchy, anthem-esque choruses to dance and sing our hearts out to.  

Sydney of Echosmith
Sydney Sierota of Echosmith performs at Perez Hilton's "One Night In Los Angeles" at The Troubadour.
photos by picksysticks
Earlier in the night, Echosmith had a lot to prove after being one of the most buzzed about bands this summer. Their debut album Talking Dreams has rocketed them up Billboard's 'Emerging Artists' chart and the iTunes Alternative Chart with their infectious summer tune "Cool Kids."   With rave reviews from music tastemakers like MTV, Entertainment Weekly, Filter Magazine and Seventeen Magazine, Echosmith is having a breakout year.  Consisting of siblings Sydney, Jamie, Noah and Graham, this SoCal band just will head off on their headlining tour this November. Earlier this year, they recently finished off Van Warped Tour where they were a featured band, performing every single date on the summer tour.  And this October, it was announced, they will be touring Neon Trees and then with American Authors for the Honda Civic Tour.  

Echosmith heads out on their headlining tour this November.
photo by picksysticks
The night was also a benefit for VH1's Save the Music Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to restoring America's instrumental music education programs and raising awareness to the importance of music as part of children's complete education. 


Chloe Chaidez joins Charli XCX onstage at The El Rey.
photo by picksysicks
As an ode to high school cult films like "Carrie" and "Jawbreaker" Charli XCX's new video for "Break the Rules" is her vision of living out her high school fantasy of getting high, skipping class and breaking all the rules.   Rose McGowan, who starred in "Jawbreaker," makes a cameo as an uptight chaperon for the prom.  And Los Angeles' own Chloe Chaidez of KITTEN also stars as one of Charli XCX's bad girls.  Also making cameos are Otto the bus driver from The Simpsons and Cherri Bomb's Miranda Miller playing the guitar.

It's been a banner year so far for the 22 year-old, performing at this weekend's pre-show for the MTV VMA's where she was nominated for five Moon Man trophies which included her hit song "Fancy" which she co-wrote with Iggy Azalea.  Now, with the release of "Break the Rules," Charli is set to release her sophomore album Sucker on October 21st.  
Check out the video below.  

"Break the Rules" official music video by Charli XCX

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


Charli XCX has officially announced October 21st as the release date  for her sophomore album Sucker which will be her first full-length via Neon Gold/Atlantic.  

Known for writing breakout hits for Icona Pop and Iggy Azalea,  Charli XCX's upcoming album 
has already spawned the infectious singles "Boom Clap" and "Break the Rules" and next month will launch her North American tour beginning in Orlando on September 26th.  The tour will take her through major cities like Washington DC, Philadelphia, Boston, NYC Austin, Los Angeles and will close out in San Francisco on October 25th.  

You can begin pre-ordering Sucker right HERE


9/26 - Orlando - The Social 9/27 - Fort Lauderdale - Culture Room 
9/29 - Jacksonville - Freebird Live 
9/30 - Charlotte - Amos' Southend 
10/2 - Washington DC - 9:30 Club 
10/3 - Philadelphia - Theatre of Living Arts 
10/4 - Boston - Royale Boston 
10/7 - NYC - Webster Hall 
10/9 - Montreal - Virgin Mobile Corona Theatre 
10/10 - Toronto -  The Hoxton 
10/11 - Detroit - St Andrews Hall 
10/13 - Chicago - Lincoln Hall
10/14 - St. Louis - The Ready Room  
10/16 - Houston - Fitzgerald's 
10/17 - Austin - Emo's 
10/18 - Dallas - Trees 
10/20 - Phoenix - Crescent Ballroom 
10/21 - San Diego - House of Blues 
10/24 - Los Angeles - Mayan Theatre 
10/25 - San Francisco - Slim's 

"Boom Clap" official music video by Charli XCX


Set in a daytime talk show set starring SNL's Vanessa Bayer as the host for "Dallas Murphy Show,"   HAIM's new video for "My Song 5" echoes the tabloid talk show like Maury Povich and Jerry Springer where guests reveal their darkest secrets to their loved ones.  

Also starring is A$AP Ferg who finds out his girlfriend has a girlfriend, KE$HA who really really loves her cat Mr. Boots and Este Haim who's sexually into mimes as well as cameos from Grimes, Big Sean and Vampire Weekend's Ezra Koenig. the song is off their debut album Days Are Gone which is out now. Check out the new video below. 

"My Song 5" by HAIM