Archive for April, 2010

This week in GO! Magazine’s music section

Friday, April 30th, 2010

Bend faves Head for the Hills return to town to play their biggest gig yet, a headlining slot at the Domino Room. My colleague Alandra Johnson talked to bassist Matt Loewen to find out how working with a very famous producer affected the band’s new, self-titled album.

The album also marked the first time the band worked with producer Drew Emmitt of Boulder jam band Leftover Salmon.

“He’s an incredible musician and a really great singer,” said Loewen.

The band also found Emmitt was skilled at helping them get the live feeling they all wanted to achieve on the new album.

Loewen said Emmitt had the ability to “hone in on that energy and sound.”

You really should read the whole thing right here.

Also in this week’s music section: the heavy, industrial rock of Powerman 5000 returns to Bend, local metal combo Kleverkill plays a CD-release show, California pop band Lakes headlines the Blues Amuse and Brews fundraiser, the new Jade’s Jazz Lounge celebrates its grand opening in La Pine, the Central Oregon Songwriters Association holds its annual Song of the Year show, and an update on the big Last Band Standing battle happening each Thursday at Boondocks. And you can always find much more in our complete music listings.

[Video] Leif James, “Here I Go”

Thursday, April 29th, 2010

This just came across the world-wide intertubes from Tim Cash of Bend’s FARfromEARTH Films: Check out the brand new, sharp-lookin’ video for Bend-based roots/blues singer-songwriter Leif James‘ tune “Here I Go,” filmed yesterday at Leif’s house.

Barenaked Ladies, Michael Franti headed to Les Schwab Amphitheater (separately)

Wednesday, April 28th, 2010

Barenaked Ladies — the cheeky Canadian band best known for their hits “One Week,” “If I Had $1000000″ and “Brian Wilson” — will perform July 17 at Bend’s Les Schwab Amphitheater. The date popped up in the past few days on the band’s website and tour-date database Pollstar, and this morning, Monqui Presents confirmed the show to me in an e-mail. No word yet on when tickets will go on sale. Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. on May 8, available through Ticketmaster and The Ticket Mill in the Old Mill District.

Also, since I never actually mentioned it here on the blog: Michael Franti & Spearhead will return to the Schwab on Aug. 5. Tickets are $37 plus service charges in advance, available through the same outlets as Barenaked Ladies.

I’m hoping to have Franti tickets to give away very soon, so become a fan of Frequency on Facebook or follow on Twitter to be in the loop!

[MP3] Download “Los Angeles” by El Salvador

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

We’re still taking advantage of Ben’s absence by posting stuff on the blog without his knowledge. That’s what you get for having babies!

Today, it’s a song from Portland rock band El Salvador. The band is working on booking a Central Oregon show, or so guitarist Nick Krautter says. This would be a good thing. El Salvador is a three-piece that combines alternately pretty and gutsy guitar work with Krautter’s compelling vocals, not to mention some fine songwriting. Check out this song from their EP “Into the Night,” out in June:

Download El Salvador’s  “Los Angeles.”

In the meantime, we hear a Father’s Day weekend show might not be out of the question for the members of El Salvador, one of whom is former Central Oregonian Joel Barker. We’re keeping our fingers crossed.

Frequency’s music will blow your mind

Monday, April 26th, 2010

With Ben away (presumably trying to string more than 20 minutes of sleep together at one time — we hear babies are a real drag on the old sleep cycle), we’re still posting whatever crazy stuff we feel like here on Frequency. Chaos!

But here’s a warning: Today’s content could potentially waste hours of your precious time today, so proceed with caution.

This cool site (hat tip: The Word Weevil) will algorithmically translate any url into mindblowing music! Frequency’s sound is pretty harmonious — appropriate, I suppose, for a music blog. Other blogs I tried sounded less pretty and more like a battle of sitars between two tone-deaf 4-year-olds.

Click on the “Play this page” button below to see what Frequency sounds like if you convert its characters into synth notes and drum loops.

Warning: Science content

Sunday, April 25th, 2010

Hello out there!  We’re still hijacking Ben’s blog while he’s home changing diapers or something. In honor of the glorious weather this weekend, here’s a song created by actual rocket scientists from NASA (The Chromatics, a group formed by employees at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center). Who says nerds can’t sing? Enjoy the sun, people!

We love babies. And The Ramones.

Friday, April 23rd, 2010

Happy Friday, Frequency fans! Ben’s out today, proud papa of a brand new baby girl. In honor of the happy occasion, his colleagues at The Bulletin are hijacking the blog!

First up is this classic cover from The Ramones, in honor of Baby Salmon. Congrats, Ben!

This week in GO! Magazine’s music section

Friday, April 23rd, 2010

Hey there, folks. Shorter update this week than usual because I’ve got a brand new baby at home and am a tad busy. For that same reason, it may be a bit quiet around here for a little while. This is our first, so I expect a sharp learning curve and reduced time for blogging.

Anyway, the cover story in GO! Magazine this week is about the Procession of the Species parade happening in downtown Bend Saturday, but it’s worth noting that this week’s local live-music opportunities are a veritable procession of the species, too.

We’ve got sweaty punk-blues (Hillstomp, Cicada Omega), a gathering of sweeping, celestial rock bands (Empty Space Orchestra, Hypatia Lake, Water & Bodies), cosmopolitan folk-pop artists (Bruce Cockburn, Catherine Feeny, Anastacia), garage-y indie-rockers playing for charity (The Autonomics, We Are Brontosaurus), a collective of electro-thump DJs celebrating a birthday (Slipmat Science), a couple of big-name Christian pop-rock acts playing worship songs (Phil Wickham, Leeland) and local hard rock (Stillfear, Audiolized), plus hip-hop (Afroman) and a roots-rock guitar hero (Tony Furtado).

Whew! Think about it — that’s kind of an abundance of riches for little ol’ Bend in the middle of April, don’t you think?

So go poke around the music section until you find something that sounds interesting. And if that doesn’t work, you can always check out our complete music listings. (Also, if you search this blog for Cicada Omega, Empty Space Orchestra, Water & Bodies, Catherine Feeny, Anastacia or The Autonomics, you’ll find more about each. There’s a little search box in the upper left-hand corner. Try it!)

Just for fun, here’s a video of Hillstomp in action.

And here’s one of Hypatia Lake.

[Review / video] Rootdown, Reed Thomas Lawrence at Bend Spring Festival

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

Frequency contributor Ethan Maffey checked out the Bend Spring Festival Saturday night and filed this report. Be sure to read all the way through and then check out the video Ethan shot of Eugene’s Rootdown:

This past weekend, the popular Bend neighborhood NorthWest Crossing hosted a scaled-down version of the typical seasonal downtown festival. From the looks of things on Saturday, the smaller festival seemed to be a complete success, and possibly the best indicator was the scheduled music that evening.

First to take the stage was local singer-songwriter Reed Thomas Lawrence, in one of his final Bend shows before his planned relocation to Los Angeles this summer. Still hanging on to a bit of the reggae-pop sound from his last album, the man they call RTL has clearly begun to incorporate more blues and traditional rock into his catalog. New and unreleased material was featured throughout much of his set and, though it was performed with a band put together only days earlier, easily Lawrence is ready for the big city.

After a free-verse introduction by RTL during his final song and a quick stage change-out, Eugene’s reggae/pop/rock band Rootdown — fronted by former solo artist Paul Wright — was ready to finish off the festival crowd and did so with surprising prowess. During Lawrence’s set, Rootdown bassist Jackson Michelson ventured in front of the stage and joined a lady who was enjoying the music with her own brand of dancing. Unsure of whether this represented the headlining band as dorky attention-grabbers or simple lovers of life and fun, I reserved making that call until their set … and it didn’t take long for me to get an answer.

While Rootdown’s music hasn’t pushed any envelopes or carved out brand new sounds, what it has done is present the genre with thoughtful accuracy and brilliant honesty. The performance of tracks from their latest album, “Summer Of Love,” delivered such upbeat messages and rhythms, most festival goers couldn’t help but jump in the air with pumped fists or split index and middle fingers, resonating the peaceful and yet energetic feel of the music. The members of Rootdown are genuine guys who love what they do, communicate that to the audience with every smile and perform each song with the kind of energy found at a Michael Franti concert. Their stage direction is tightly executed and they engage the crowd with charisma that shows off their charm. By the end of the night, I had become a big fan and unashamedly asked them autograph my CD.

If you missed this show, you can still catch an acoustic performance from Rootdown May 9 at The Kilns here in Bend, before they venture as far away as Alaska on their college campus tour … and I suggest you do.

I’m on KPOV’s “Right Here, Right Now” in an hour

Friday, April 16th, 2010

A few weeks ago, I participated in a panel discussion about culture in Central Oregon for “Right Here, Right Now,” a program on Bend’s community radio station, KPOV.

Also on the panel were Maralyn Thoma, owner of 2nd Street Theater, Linda Spring, who’s active in the local alternative arts scene, and Bob Woodward, who’s been involved in Bend’s creative culture for more than three decades.

That discussion was recorded and will air at 5 p.m. (or shortly thereafter) today on KPOV, which is 106.7 FM on your radio dial. You can also stream it at That’s about 45 minutes away; sorry for the late notice.

It was a good, fun discussion, and I hope you’ll give it a listen.