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Festival Debut: Gathering of The Tribes at Public Works in San Francisco - 9/13

Editor's Note: Jonathan Cárdenas of Pow Magazine and San Francisco Great Society put a lot of time into curating this exclusive peek at the upcoming festival, Gathering of the Tribes. This fest celebrates and works to promote and preserve the spirit of psych music in San Francisco. Founder, Dennis Gonzales is very passionate about his work and his efforts to support psych musicians from all over the US. The Bay Area is lucky to have him and the community of amazing promoters and musicians who help keep the spirit and tradition of supportive, familial music and arts communities alive and well. -je

The Gathering Of The Tribes is a festival centralized exclusively in itself and its own breed of musicians and artists. San Francisco has had other festivals in past years, but this one aims to showcase the Bay Area’s breed of psychedelia and its sub-genres, as well as celebrate its musical and artistic ancestry. The name is borrowed, or you could even say revitalized—resurrected—from the Human Be-In that took place in Golden Gate Park, January 14, 1967. This is when Haight-Ashbury became symbolically immortalized as a counter-culture mecca. Our festival celebrates San Francisco’s past and present, and aims to push forward its music and arts in a positive and progressive direction, preserving it for the good of the Bay Area and to keep things groovy.

“We are the San Francisco Preservation Society—God save the Acid Tests, Beatniks and notoriety.”

Hopefully you got that reference. But no, we’re the San Francisco Great Society. 

Founder, Dennis Gonzales: I've been running Pow Magazine since 1986 and being entrenched in the music community for several years as a social media journalist, I can tell you SF music is not only alive, it is about to explode into a new movement unlike anything seen since the first music scene in 1965. Everything about our Society and our festival is a familial, grass roots effort.  Amoeba is sponsoring the event—they too have promoted it on their Facebook page as well as Twitter. Pow Magazine, Counter Culture Artist Management, and Innerlight Presents are altogether presenting this festival. We have reached out to the best of the Bay, and most have said “yes.”

Clay Andrews of The Spiral Electric and Innerlight Presents: If the festival is comprised of bands that are all touring and far away, and everybody has all their records—that’s great and all; you have to bring people to the event, but at the same time it’s like—don’t just throw a fest where you just bring an import of things because that’s not really doing anything for the local scene. It’s not exposing people to what’s actually happening right now in their backyards.

Derek See SF DJ, musician and music collector: One thing I’m especially excited about is hearing and meeting bands that I don’t know even though they're local. Because of what i do for a living, i have to get up real early in the morning on weekends—I do go out and see live music when I can, but never as much as I’d like to, whereas at this festival I’m just super stoked to be able to experience and hang out with like-minded folks.

Performing at SFGS: Gathering of The Tribes
at Public Works in San Francisco on September 13th

The Gentle Cycle
Buzzmutt
The Spiral Electric
LSD and the Search for God
Down and Outlaws
Cellar Doors
Down Dirty Shake
The Love Dimension
Mark Nelsen
Sea Dramas
California Raga Association
Lee Gallagher and the Hallelujah
The Green Door
Carlton Melton
Mystery Flavors
The She’s
Electric Shepherd
Zodiac Death Valley

Visuals by:

White Light Prism - vimeo.com/user6728976
Mad Alchemy - www.madalchemy.net
Andy Puls - www.videopaws.com

DJs:

Abel Oleson
Derek See
Michael Tarin

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The Fourth Wall unveils single 'Cosmos in the Wall' from upcoming LP 'Lovely Violence'

Originally from Hawaii, The Fourth Wall is a Portland based indie quartet with a sound swimming in post rock and psychedelic influences. Their melancholic melodies and soaring songs are a little reminiscent of a less orchestral version of late Mercury Rev. The band recently announced they will release their new LP, 'Lovely Violence,' on July 31st via Bug Hunt Records. You can catch them live at Mississippi Studios on August 2nd.

We added this song to The Deli's playlist of Best songs by emerging Portland artists - check it out!

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Walter Nichols

Here's something fairly different. It's not indie, it's not psych, it's not electronic (except in the most technical sense), hip-hop or beat: it's the compositional music of multi-instrumentalist Walter Nichols. It's fascinating stuff, music that is both obviously deeply technically advanced and that comes at you in forms and lengths and with style that is far from typical radio-ready pop-structured songs, but which also manages to be not overindulgent, tedious or impenetrable. It pulls the fun side of pop and modern music, not shying away from less stereotypically "classial" instruments but instead including things like synths, looping machines and saxophone (and much more), but it ditches the typical "song" rulebook and also pulls from the focus on technical mastery and experimentation and the willingness to use lengthy, complex structures that composed music tends to have. It's a best of both worlds scenario, really.

I can tell when I listen to Nichols' pieces that there's a lot going on here that, as someone with what's obviously much more limited music theory knowledge than the composer, I'm not fully comprehending or being totally aware of, even while I can still point out to particular elements that seem singularly complex or impressive. Yet, as a student of music history and the relationship between the so-called "high" arts and popular art, I know that what Nichols pulls off here is not easy to do at all, this walking easily between the two worlds of technical composition and music that's modern and fun for anyone to listen to. .

As a plain listener, playful and rich are the words that come to mind when listening to Nichols' latest work, the succinctly titled W, which you can hear below in full. Moods are built and played with and never overdone or hammered too hard home, one track is very much a new flavor from the last and yet all work together conceptually and stylistically. It's glimmering and beautiful at times, harsh and nicely grating at others, and in all a real work-out for the brain.

If you want to push your boundaries a bit, or are already the type to be intrigued by music that isn't tailor-made to slide right into your preconceptions of fun, modern music but which still has the ability to find its way into that part of your brain (rules be damned), give Nichols a try with W below. It's well worth a little time to see if it clicks, because if it does, you'll have some quite nutritious new brainfood to get yer noggin' snacking on.

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Gracie and Rachel open for Porcelain Raft + work on debut release

A mountainous piece of shrill piano presses, thick string plucks, and violins that skitter only to soar... “Go” by Gracie and Rachel is simply beautiful. Apparently a song off a forthcoming album of the same name by the Berkeley-raised, Brooklyn-based duo, “Go” awes in its ability to make technical mastery into something moving and potentially transcendent. “It’s okay, it’s okay/To let your heart race, heart race,” goes a silky-voiced lyric, wondrous assurance sliding through. Gracie and Rachel will open for Porcelain Raft this Thursday (6.25) at TT The Bear’s Place Inc. in Cambridge, Massachussetts and will perform at Rockwood Music Hall on Monday, 6.29. In the meantime, listen to “Go,” and watch its ponderous black-and-white music video, below.

We added this song to The Deli's playlist of Best mellow songs by emerging NYC artists - check it out!

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Mother Falcon Does the Big Band Thing with Grace on "Kid"

Mother Falcon is Austin’s premier big numbers band, which you likely already knew, but they’ve just released a new track whose strength comes from its efficiency and its singular elements, rather than from the amount of noise that a big group can make. A lot of the energy in the just-released single “Kid,” in fact, comes from the lone female voice doing the largest portion of the singing, which is all lightness-leaking breathy tones that kick the track off with just a few strummed chords and an egg shaker beat in accompaniment.

This being Mother Falcon, however, layers and instruments are quickly added, tossing in at some point everything from horns to chanting to some really nice background drones that waver from right in pitch to just off to completely dissonant and give the song a lovely off-kilter texture. There are moments where MF does do the Arcade Fire/Broken Social Scene pioneered “all of our giant band playing at once” thing, but the restraint they show as a group throughout the song and even in these moments, and the benefits that each piece in the group adds to the overall song in these cacophonous parts has Mother Falcon resembling those other influential big bands at their thoughtful song-engineering best.

Speaking of seminal 2000s bands, MF also seems to be channeling something that was going on at that time in North American music (and is much murkier these days), which was a sense of just wanting to get together with other weird kids and have a lighthearted, happy time. “Kid” has that same kind-of “temporary refuge from the suburbs,” sunny-day in the park flying kites and drinking stolen vodka in plastic cups with your also-loner friends kind-of feel to it. In this age of endless online outrage clashes and what seems like just a whole damn lot of divisions between people, this is a feeling that’s nice to see it not only expressed in MF’s newest work, but downright nailed.

The track sits here below for you to get your feel-goods from, and you can keep up with the MF at their Facebook here. This is music that’ll help you remember that sometimes it actually does stop raining, which even some of us Texas storm-lovers might need right now, and it precedes the full album release on 8/14.

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