Best Bets This Week in Live Bay Area Music, Fauxchella Edition


Faux·che·lla. Noun.

Definition: The time of year when the music biz’s best acts march west to the massively influential festival just outside of Palm Springs. As a result, surrounding regions such as the Bay Area are incidental benefactors, as bands typically tour up and down the west coast before and after their Coachella performance.

In other words, it's time to soak in all of the glorious Fauxchella shrapnel this week and next. Let's all go broke trying to keep up with the onslaught of kickass show after kickass show.

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Bill Graham Civic Auditorium, Tuesday

Nick Cave concerts are generally considered religious experiences. Cave, the A-type pulpit man, directs traffic and channels ghosts from his storied past on the regular, as he did over the weekend in Vancouver. If you were an punk rock kid of the ‘80s, Cave lived in your radio and taunted your subconscious. Here's Cave at his weirdest and darkest (warning: Major time suck below. Do it anyways): 


Alt-J, The Fillmore, Wednesday

Here’s everything you need to know about the humble beginnings of Alt-J’s brilliant debut album An Awesome Wave, courtesy of Alt-J bassist Gwil Sainsbury:

“The first thing we thought was that it sounded so (expletive) weird that we weren’t going to release it. We figured if we did we’d get dropped by our label. But we felt that at least we achieved the goal of making an album—one of my goals was wanting to release an album at some point in my life. So given all that, to have had the response to the record that we’ve had is something that we never would have ever predicted.” (courtesy of

Modest Mouse, Fox Theater, Wednesday

Truly genius songwriters — the poets who twist words and phrases into heartbreaking, soul-validating commentaries on the human condition with regularity — only come around once or twice a generation. Modest Mouse’s Isaac Brock is certainly in that elite discussion. Minding-screwing is what he was put on Earth to do, and we’re all better for it. Few albums will ever touch the metaphysical enlightenment of The Moon & Antarctica, and here’s just one example of many from that still-uber-relevant masterpiece:


Foals, The Fillmore, Thursday

Respect comes easy for this Oxford quintet, which garnered the famed NME award six years ago for its stunning breakthrough album Antidotes. But widespread attention has been less steady over the band’s brief three-album career. That’s starting to change thanks to their 2013 entry Holy Fire, a modern, hyper-thoughtful ode to ‘80s indie pop rock of yesterday. Their font size is growing on festival marquees across the country, Coachella included. Booking the Fillmore is an equally impressive feat for this artistically forward act.      


Knife Party, The Warfield, Friday

Australian house duo Knife Party currently resides in that nether region between “Next Big Thing” and “Really Big Deal” status (production note: physically they reside in the UK now). When their Haunted House EP drops, they’ll be even closer to RBD status. Put this self-described “Seizure music / death electro / derpstep” act on your radar and claim you saw the next Swedish House Mafia before they became the next Swedish House Mafia.

Super duper honorary Fauxchella mentions:

Sigur Rós, Bill Graham Civic Auditorium, Sunday

The Airborne Toxic Event, The Warfield, Thursday

Portugal. The Man, The Independent, Friday

Yeasayer, Mezzanine, Friday

Johnny Marr, The Fillmore, Saturday

Band of Horses, Fox Theater, Saturday

Poliça, Mezzanine, Saturday

Bat For Lashes, The Regency Ballroom, Sunday


For more words like these, follow @ChrisTrenchard

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