CVIndependent

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Last updateWed, 27 Sep 2017 1pm

Reviews

02 Aug 2017
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Lionel Richie made one thing clear on Friday night at the Fantasy Springs Special Event Center: He didn’t like the weather. “It’s too hot outside to be moving like this inside!” he told the audience at one point. Sure, it was a scorcher outside, but that didn’t stop a near-sell-out crowd on Friday night from dancing and clapping along with the former Commodores singer and ’80s R&B hit-maker. There were ample references to the infamous “Hello” meme that has circulated around the Internet—on homemade T-shirts people were wearing, on the video screen during the show, and even on an officially licensed sweatshirt that could be yours for the low, low price of $80 from the merchandise booth in the lobby. Make no mistake: Richie remains relevant in the music industry today; his most-recent album, Tuskegee, went platinum and hit No. 1 on the Billboard Top 100 chart in 2012. The…
17 Jul 2017
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When Nile Rodgers and CHIC performed at Fantasy Springs on Saturday night, he expressed concern about the setup inside the Special Events Center. “It’s weird to see everyone sitting; it feels like being in a classroom,” Rodgers told the crowd about a quarter of the way into the band’s set. “CHIC is a dance band; feel free to move around.” Sadly, CHIC did not perform to a sold-out crowd on Saturday night, but those who were in attendance savored the chance to enjoy the legendary disco-era band responsible for a slew of hits, such as “Le Freak” and “Everybody Dance,” which have earned front man Nile Rodgers a place in rock ’n’ roll history, and led him to collaborations with artists such as Daft Punk. Some fans who showed up early got the chance to meet the man himself when he stepped out from the backstage area and began to…
03 Jul 2017
About three weeks ago, I ran into Stiles, the always-cheerful manager at a Arkansas-based big-box store who sports some of the best tattoos in the High Desert. He’s one of my music compasses, always guiding me to great music, and he reminded me of the Black Lips show at Pappy and Harriet’s on June 24. I decided to go, trusting that Stiles would be standing next to me—because at the last Black Lips show I attended, I almost suffered a tib-fib (tibia fibula) fracture. The Black Lips were in Pioneertown promoting the band’s eighth studio album, Satan’s Graffiti or God’s Art?—but the lineup ran deep, with Starcrawler as the first of two openers. From stage right, Starcrawler guitarist Henri Cash entered with guitar in hand, letting a riff echo through the early crowd, followed by Arrow de Wilde, wearing a hospital gown, acting like an escapee from sanatorium—imagine a female…
15 Jun 2017
The three-day party known as Splash House returned to Palm Springs last weekend for the first of two stints this summer, opening Friday night with a celebration at the Palm Springs Air Museum. “Yo, Splash House, right now, this is LondonBridge,” said one of the opening-night DJs. “You are all going to kiss someone you’ve never kissed before,” he predicted as he laid down the beats that got the early birds dancing. Some in attendance partied a little too much, too early, as I ran into some first-year osteopathic medical-school students who created a technicolor yawn near the picnic area that needed to be mopped up. However, not all in attendance were bound to be doctors, as I overheard a bleached-blond surfer dude make a profound statement: “I think that’s an airport.” His companion, a human version of a Barbie doll, replied: “Yeah I think it is.” Malaa, a rumored…
23 May 2017
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When U2 released The Joshua Tree in 1987, the album was an unparalleled success, both financially and critically. Now that three decades have passed, the album is a timeless classic—and to celebrate, U2 is currently touring to promote its re-release, and performing the album in its entirety. On Saturday and Sunday night, U2 returned to the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. While the production of the Joshua Tree Tour 2017 was not as epic in terms of scale as some previous U2 tours, the 200-by-40 foot-stage featured the largest high-resolution LED screen ever used in a touring show. The main part of the stage featured a joshua tree on it, and the stage’s extended catwalk was supposed to be part of the tree’s shadow. Openers The Lumineers took the stage as the sun was beginning to set, and the band’s folk anthems were a nice, calm warm-up to the anticipated high-energy…
16 May 2017
As I waited for Le Butcherettes to take the stage at Pappy and Harriet’s, I had a flashback to the 2014 show at the Observatory where I first laid eyes and ears on Le Butcherettes. Le Butcherettes are on the road with At the Drive-In; this was a side gig in between supporting dates. Teri Gender Bender, aka Teresa Suarez Cosio, never disappoints—but I was a little worried, because this Mexican dynamo has surplus energy that potentially meant I would be squeezed like a grape against the stage as she drenched her powerful spirit on the crowd. I again thought of that 2014 show. A pit barrier then kept my camera and me free of slamming admirers. But this show at Pappy’s was not sold out, so I was not too concerned about flying bodies. I ran into to Michael Reiter, a music super-fan who is always a few steps…
16 May 2017
I go to a lot of music shows—and I still can’t predict an audience’s arrival time. Saturday, May 6, was an unseasonably cold and windy night in Pioneertown—definite sweater weather, but not even a sweater was enough to keep a person warm. Ty Segall’s outdoor show was sold out—yet fans merely trickled in, taking shelter by the new patio area. Except for a few die-hard fans, everyone missed a great opening performance by the punk band Audacity, out of Fullerton. The band was also the opener for Joyce Manor at Pappy’s recently; it is good to see promoters are booking real punk rock instead of the bubblegum pop-punk offerings that are so common these days. Ty Segall let it be known that it was OK to wear white before Memorial Day, which made me feel a little bit under-dressed for the show. He thrilled the audience with genres ranging from…
11 May 2017
Opening for Mac DeMarco’s Cinco de Mayo show at Pappy and Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace was a band called Drugdealer. One could describe the group as quirky and fun … but a little strange. “My name is Mike, and I write songs with my friends the Drugdealers,” said front man Mike Collins, before quipping: “Joshua Tree, the entrance to heaven.” Drugdealer offers ’70s-style pop, performed by guys who are riding high via a cannabis-fueled airline. Introducing the single “End of Comedy” off of the band’s debut album by the same name, Collins said: “This time, the band rehearsed twice!” Drugdealer did a great job of setting the mood for the rest of the night. Mac DeMarco came to Pappy and Harriet’s to celebrate the release of his new album, This Old Dog, via Captured Tracks. Once known for larks onstage—which have even gotten him arrested—this old dog has learned new tricks,…