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Artist of the Month
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Welcome to the new Deli Charts, organized by genre and scene.

To rank the artists with the star system go to the Top 50.


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Having Stephen Brunner, known for his stage name of Thundercat, at the Lawn stage of this year’s festival made perfect sense. The six-string bass maestro brought his peculiar brand of avant-garde jazz to what was suitably the chillest of all the stages, and though a good few of us were standing up, you could sense that the majority of relaxed attendees - most of them laying face up and letting the sundays hit - were letting his improvisational psychedelic arrangements sink in. Brunner plays with crisp sophistication, letting his masterfully precise fingerpicking speak for itself with the backup of top-shelf musicians who each add their own improvisational grit with seamless momentum. It was a welcome respite from the bustling activity going around the festival grounds, all of us nodding in unison with casual ease as the sun began to make its descent. - Juan Rodriguez

 

August 25, 2014
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One of last year’s surprises was Kelela’s startling mixtape Cut 4 Me, a fine collection of experimental R&B featuring a who’s who of producers that shined the light on a bright and exciting young voice. Glowing in a darkened arena inside the LA Coliseum during a mid-afternoon scorcher, the MacArthur park resident caught the attention of a modest amount of attendees who were instantly drawn by her dark, yet inviting dance music. Kelela’s voice shimmered and soared above a series of perturbing, icy synths, demonstrating a great deal of overpowering versatility even when the samples she plays against are so commanding. She also gave one of the most genuine call-outs in the festival’s two days, thanking her fans for supporting her mixtape with an affable glee after mentioning how she was working at a call center in the Valley just a year ago. Kelela may be a fiery, even threateningly seductive on stage, but her warm radiance and humility outside of it makes it easy to root her. She enter a new stage in her rising career, proving that her journey to megastardom is just getting started. - Juan Rodríguez

Photo Credit: Carl Pocket for FYF Fest

 

August 25, 2014
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Slacker rock foursome LA Font continue their prolific streak with the video for the track "Onshore", a ramchackle lo-fi romp that finds them echoing the straightforward hooks of Robert Pollard. As for the visuals that accompany the track, well, imagine if the band takes the concept of "loose lips sink ships" into literal terms; the band members play guitar heroes as they fend off a flying army of vicious, computer animated lips causing havoc around Echo Park, Hitchock style. LA Font is currently touring the East Coast, but they'll be back soon enough. I mean, seriously, haven't you seen them yet?

August 22, 2014
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Kayla Cohen, otherwise known by her moniker, Itasca, is set to release her first full-length album, entitled "Unmoored By The Wind", on October 14th under Matt Mondanile's (Real Estate) label, New Images. Originally hailing from New York, Cohen moved to LA in 2012, the same year she released "Grace Riders on the Road". Almost two years later, the growth in Unmoored's standout track, "Nature's Gift", is apparent. Cohen has a distinct and slightly ironic mix of influences past and present. Her unique and wandering vocals have the ancient, other-worldly sound of a Gregorian chant, but the new age melancholy of modern day powerhouses Lana Del Rey and Sharon Van Etten. There's an ethereal exoticism to her lyrics that is both captivating and sensual. She invites you into her world; a vulnerable, dream-like setting that's hard to say no to. - Jennifer Mergott

August 19, 2014
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Former Riverside residents Francisco The Man play a finely-tuned brand of indie rock that is instantly timeless, bringing to mind a large number of late 90s, early 2000s bands that primordially relied on a catchy hook and a driving melody when alterna-pop was still especially all the rage. A tiny whiff of atmosphere accompanies the urgent beat in "Progress", the first single from their upcoming debut full-length Loose Ends, which could've lightened up a number of early-afternoon festival slots this summer had festival curators been truly paying attention. Singer-guitarist Scott Cantino's high-ptiched, yet luminous vocals are refracted against an explosion of twinkling guitars and airy synths, accompanied by a dense, yet bouncy charge that's smartly accesible. Loose Ends comes out on September 30th via Small Plates.

August 18, 2014
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Youth Code's electro-hardocore mash is an industrial assault. Their recent single, "Consuming Guilt," off their new EP, A Place to Stand, is an intense collection of heavy synths, pounding back beats, and plenty of noise. Ryan George and Sara Taylor make up the complex duo; their use of samples and sonic manipulation create strange fusions of 80's hardcore claustrophobia with synth noise chaos. Their EP is out on Da Is Records, and stream the single below . - Jake Saunders

August 14, 2014
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