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Winter Break

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Live Review: Diners at Bridgetown DIY 1/28

Alyx Poska is from Orange County, CA. He likes weird show locations, #smoothmusic and critique of the capitalist wasteland. He's the founder of diy4lyfe records & zine and co-founder of OC DIY as well as local cult leader. He is a strong proponent of genres like bummer punk, yacht rock, new weird americana and smooth music.

Diners came through Southern California multiple times in 2015, each show gathering larger and larger crowds to watch their smooth desert pop jams. With the departure of drummer Tristan Jemsek to Seattle, frontman Tyler Broderick began 2016 with a “solo” tour that featured intimate performances throughout the great state of #Kali. I was lucky enough to catch him at Bridgetown DIY in La Puente, as well as in Orange County. This show, booked by Aaron Kovacs from Lauren Records, featured three locals that tended toward the indie rock and bummer punk side of the spectrum, and all three were quite loud in Bridgetown’s boomy but narrow space.

Panoramic started off the night with two bass amps but no bass player in sight. They were one of the two power trios playing, and by the time their set started a small crowd had formed. Heavy hitters Settling played second and pushed the limits of people’s eardrums with songs from their digital single “Ava/Pretty Dream” and their demo EP. Diners was a welcome relief for the ears as people crowded around Tyler’s guitar amp and keyboard. Tyler treated the crowd to old favorites (even tracks from their first EP “Throw Me a Ten”), and songs from the latest Diners 7”, “It’s All True”, put out by Asian Man Records. His subtle musical showmanship was captured in the different performance stunts like medley-ing short songs together, grand pauses, continually rising key changes, and repeated chordal motifs that would show up randomly in other songs. The crowd was enchanted and definitely left wanting more of his unique brand of smooth ‘60s and ‘70s pop music.

The band members of Winter Break were visibly under the weather but they still delivered a tight set of songs at the end of the night from their 2015 self-titled release, and some new songs. The anticipation is building for the new Diners LP, tentatively titled Diners III according to Tyler, which will be out on Asian Man Records before the end of the year! - Alyx Poska, photo credit: Ryan Mo

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Live Review: Media Jeweler at VLHS 1/10

"I wanna do Passport. I wanna do Passport."

The harmonics and bass loops of "Looking Glass Reprise" drowned out Sam Farzin's cries, and he relented. Christmas lights and butcher paper cutouts shuddered with each strum. The nondescript DIY space VLHS —cousin to recording house/makeshift venue The Palisades— has been a musical hub for Pomona and the greater Inland Empire for four years running. On Sunday night, over 40 warm bodies packed themselves inside the walls, resting on the half-pipe, offering bud and new friendships as the tremors of Media Jeweler rattled their skulls.

The atmosphere was loose, and it smelled like Red Forman's basement.

Earlier, Jack Connor of opening band hit me, Harold joked about his goatee before burning a hole in our stomachs faster than you can say Rafa's Tacos. DOCKS frontman Ranier Tinkelenberg broke a string, but still slayed the crowd with Jack's honeyblonde Tele. Winter Break (ex- Summer Vacation) let out the most luscious screams as Mark Chen and Aaron Kovac gazed into each other's eyes. And to top it off, Hillary Chillton spoiled us at the end of the night with a new song (as of now un-named), going overtime with closer "Sad Dad/Rad Dad".

Everyone knew the lyrics by heart. And everyone sang. Long live VLHS. 
- Ryan Mo

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Media Jeweler plays VLHS tonight with DOCKS (on tour), Winter Break, Hillary Chillton, hit me, Harold

While we were complaining about 50 degree weather in Los Angeles, Santa Ana's Media Jeweler reportedly spent the last few weeks in Arizona while also helping to raise money for a friend's stolen projector, which definitely made us feel like sloths. Sam Farzin (guitar) had this to say about the band's foray into the wilderness:

"After a winter's hibernation traveling between yurts along the floor of the Grand Canyon, we are four souls more aligned than ever before. We are excited to present our escapist song cycle in the flesh for the first time in almost two months."

The rock band (full stop) plays a DIY show with DOCKS, who are on the last stop of their EP Release Tour— their six-track album Misdirected comes out January 15th via Open Door (CDs) and Bad Break (cassette). Media Jeweler's 2015 debut album $99 R/T Hawaii is expected to release in vinyl early next February. Check the Facebook event page for location details; act set times below. - Ryan Mo 

hit me, Harold - 8:30 PM

Media Jeweler - 9:10 PM

DOCKS - 9:50 PM

Winter Break - 10:30 PM

Hillary Chillton - 11:10 PM


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