Two Weeks In Rock: Palmer Kisses Perry, Dolls Kick Ass & Take Names

from Metblogs contest winner OtterFreak

It’s been a brilliant last few weeks in rock here in LA, and I though I’d post some pics taken by friends of LA Metblogs / winners of LA Metblogs ticket contests.

From Metblogs contest winner Burns!
From Metblogs contest winner Burns!

To the left, Amanda Palmer of the Dresden Dolls in her powerful solo show, introduced by Neil Gaiman (“Amanda Palmer is dead”) and joined at the end of her performance (after a rendition of Rihanna’s “Umbrella,” complete with real rain) by a (possibly faux?) Katy Perry and a very real Margaret Cho, who conspired with Palmer to ensure Perry actually really kissed a girl, and not just for record sales (plus a gay wedding!).

From Friend of Metblogs Michael Chavarria

A few days later came the Cracker / New York Dolls/ X show at the brand-spankin-new Club Nokia, where Cracker (one of my fave bands) delivered a solid set and a slam-bang version of “Lonesome Johnny Blues” (crossing my fingers they’ll do their Campout again next year).

From Friend of Metblogs Andy Sternberg (LAist)

Then the New York Dolls came on with what could only be termed as a triumphant powerhouse of a performance, egging the audience on until bleach-blond waifs were wilting like flowers in the front row and disaffected emo kids were spazzing out dancing. Seeing bands like this, who’ve survived through so much, return to the stage and just KILL–it makes my little black heart glad. X followed and tore through everyone’s faves, with a dash of X-mas (har har har) spirit thrown in (and here‘s a report by Metblogs contest winner Chez Shoes).

If you have pictures, you may want to post a link in the comments as well. Thanks, everyone, for playing, and keep the entries coming! More shows will be posted in the next few days.


Hotel Cafe releases holiday album

Only women are featured on a new Christmas CD.

Fiona Apple singing “Frosty the Snowman?!” That’s about as believable as Cindy McCain sharing her brownie recipe. But Apple is indeed one of the females-only singer songwriters on the Hotel Cafe’s new holiday album, Winter Songs, released this week. It distinguishes itself with a mix of standards and original holiday songs from a slew of artists who have performed at the intimate Hollywood venue.

Since its opening in 2000, Hotel Cafe has grown in size and stature, doubling in size from the original narrow coffee shop footprint it originally occupied on Cahuenga, as well as distinguishing itself as  one of the premier singer songwriter venues in the country.

Apple’s “Frosty,” aside from being frosty,  is more Maria McKee than Doris Day, no real surprise. While Sara Bareilles’ and Ingrid Michaelson’s opening “Winter Song” is exquisite and sad, Lenka  delivers  her Feist-like “All My Bells Are Ringing” as if it’s xmas year round, and I mean that in a not-scary way. Katy Perry (yes, she of “I Kissed a Girl”) sings a boozy “White Christmas” like it’s the end of the night in the loneliest bar in LA and Meika’s “Maybe Next Year” could fit into year round chill playlists– something attested to by her inclusion in two recent Grey’s Anatomy episodes.

The original songs’ moods and styles balance the old stand-bys, all of which have hand-tailored arrangements– a good thing if you’re like me and equate most versions of Christmas carols with fingernails scraping on a blackboard.

And might I add, there are only 70 shopping days until…

OMG! Freekin’ Warped Tour!…Still!

you get what you pay forYes, the Warped Tour is still happening! After all these years! Year after year, it still happens!

Wow!

We’ve got tickets to give away to their shows in Pomona (6/20) and Ventura (6.22)! You could see Against Me!, The Aggrolites, Angels & Airwaves, As I Lay Dying (Playing 6/20-7/18), The Bronx, Cobra Starship, Fear (Playing 6/22), Gil Mantera’s Party Dream, Gym Class Heroes, HorrorPops, Katy Perry, Pennywise (Playing 6/20-6/29 and 7/15-8/3), Reel Big Fish, Relient K, Say Anything, Shwayze, Skeet Skeet, Story of the Year and too, too many more. Too many.

But I plan to make it difficult for you, or perhaps at least counterintuitive. Because I’m a pain in the ass.

To win, you have to tell me your LEAST FAVORITE BAND on the bill, and you have to give me a good reason why you hate them with every fiber of your being. Vitriol. Rage. Bile. Ad hominem attacks. Go on. Impress me. Be a hater.

If ya don’t win, and you still want tickets, buy ’em for Pomona (6/20) or Ventura (6.22)!