Playing their entire new album from start to finish, The Hazards Of Love has a refreshingly hard and gritty feeling that we’ve yet to see out of the upbeat reigning indie-pop royalty, The Decemberists. Theatrical folk ballads fall gracefully upon what singer, Colin Meloy describes as “heavy metal thunder.” Not exactly a new theme for the Portland quintet, the first half of the album was written in constant succession, while the second half is a mismatched thematic continuation of the folktale with a very openly interpretable ending. Vicious stories of love forlorn, forest queens, rage, murder and everything in between told through double entendre lyrics add up to an experimental album that the masses can still relate to.
Summer festival season is well underway, and luckily for us, most of the big names are stopping by the Bay Area before taking to the big stages. If you can’t make it to Sasquatch, Bonnaroo, Rothbury or our very own Outside Lands this summer, check out some of this summer’s must-see artists this week:
John Vanderslice, Rickshaw Stop, 5/19: Making the second stop on his tour for his new album Romanian Names (his first album under Dead Oceans record label) John Vanderslice’s album release party at the Rickshaw Stop featuring special guests, The Morning Benders will be a Bay Area-native filled delight.
Chances are you've seen one of Oakland designer Jason Munn's music posters, especially if you went to the Treasure Island Music Festival (the whole ship/island concept was his idea). Or , perhaps, you've spun a CD with his art on it. Munn's SF-based design studio, The Small Stakes, has created posters, magazine graphics, CD art and book covers for bands like, Beck, Modest Mouse, The Decemberists, Death Cab for Cutie, and locals Rogue Wave.