Category Archives: Reviews

“This Is All Yours” Review: To Nara and Back

Featured image: (pictured, from left to right): Gus Unger-Hamilton (piano, keyboard, vocals), Thom Green (percussion), and Joe Newman (guitar, vocals)

Alt-J‘s debut album An Awesome Wave surprised audiences when it won the British Mercury Prize in 2012, the album having been dismissed by experts as “just a fad.” But as alt-J’s distinctive folk-and-electronic rock blend gripped the hearts of music lovers, the English four-piece (now three) began to receive a new kind of recognition across the globe.

Since then, alt-J has only increased in popularity, making their sophomore effort, This Is All Yours, one of the most anticipated studio album releases of 2014.

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“Bring Us Together” Review: The Asteroids Galaxy Tour Returns

The very first time I heard a song by The Asteroids Galaxy Tour, it was as background music for a Coca-Cola commercial on TV—you know, Coke, that completely safe-to-consume soft drink that doubles as an effective toilet cleaner? Anyway, the song that the ad played was “The Golden Age,” a single off their debut album, Fruit.

(EDIT: My memory is flawed, who knew? Apparently it wasn’t a commercial for Coca-Cola, but in fact Heineken. Oh well, both disgusting).

Now, this was a time when I didn’t know Shazam existed (much less could say the word with a straight face), but that wasn’t a problem. The song’s hook was just so catchy, that it took only one Google search of “I wished I lived in the Golden Age . . .” to find it.

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San Diego Symphony: A Taste of the Final Frontier

WARNING: THIS REVIEW IS MY LONGEST YET.

The wonder of hearing ̶ and watching ̶ a full orchestra bring these scores to life is something I will never forget. I am so happy that you get to experience this, too. I could not be more grateful to Michael, to all the brilliant musicians who originally brought these scores to life, and to those equally astounding artists playing here, live, tonight.”

–J.J. Abrams

Well. Hullo again. I confess my energy level isn’t quite back up to par yet. What my brother said is true: our San Diego excursion has ended. How was it? Honestly, our suffering in San Diego this past weekend remains heavy on our hearts. (Hey, YOU try wandering around the city surrounded by those lucky bastards people with their Comic-Con badges shining upon their bosoms while you remain the wishful outsider.)

All right, all right. Perhaps I exaggerate.

Being there was . . . smile-inducing, at the very least. The atmosphere alone during our jaunt around the Gaslamp Quarter had been enough to invigorate the soul. Rivers of people, dressed in sundry fan-driven regalia, flowed across the streets. Some stopped and bunched around the cosplaying stars for photos. Others rushed past, urged onto the next event (i.e. dinner). Everywhere were superhero T-shirts, faux wings, wigs, capes, and colored contacts. For a person who has always loved Halloween, cosplay is a god-send (because why wait for October 31 to walk around in disguise?).

Ah, but what this post must focus on now is the event we attended on Saturday evening, July 26, 2014 at the Embarcadero Marina Park South.  For those unfamiliar with the area, the park is connected by a thin land bridge to the shore that the (gigantic) Convention Center dominates. On three sides of the park lies rocks, water, and boats. Arriving at 6:45 pm and watching the sun set right before the show began at 8:00 pm was a beautiful start to the night.

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