Echo Park Rising is once again upon us. The musical event that boasts concerts in numerous clubs and storefronts – including Lot 1 Cafe, Fix, Little Joy, Taix, and more – across the neighborhood will be taking place this Saturday and Sunday, August 17-18. Tickets to the event are free with RSVP or you can grab VIP tickets for an extra charge.
Echo Park has risen indeed; zeroing in on a schedule with this year’s lineup is practically like Sophie’s Choice. I’m tearing my hair out just thinking about it. Olin & the Moon or Mt. Ossa? The Happy Hollows or Moses Campbell? Neighborhood staples who can practically call The Echo home, playing alongside wide-eyed indie neophytes.
This years’ tour de force of Eastside music isn’t making life easy, but we here at The Eastsider will do what we can to help you craft your schedule for this weekend. Here are our top picks for each day.
Mt. Ossa @ Echoplex
3 pm. – 3:30 p.m.
Straight from the heavens comes, Mt. Ossa and their kaleidoscopic dreamscape. Self-described as experimental, you can practically see the trails passing in your field of vision with each note. And with their single “Love Jam”, the band even dabbles in some ‘70s funk. If it sounds crazy, well that’s because it is. But if you get the chance, build your own mythology this weekend with Mt. Ossa as your soundtrack.
Charlie Clark @ Fix
5:45 pm – 7 pm
Venture up into leafy Elysian Heights for the calming folk music of Charlie Clark. A hybrid of Damien Rice and The Decemberists, Clark explores themes of love and drink through dark metaphors. With Clark, the macabre is beautiful.
Jungle Fire @ The Echo
7:30 pm – 8:10 pm
This 11-member Afro-Latin funk ensemble is all the flair and explosion of The Dap Kings with the flavor of Ray Camacho & The Teardrops. A ripe patina on their sound, adds vintage funk charm.
Big Black Delta @ Taix Outdoor
8:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Much like a jaunt into the great unknown, Big Black Delta will take you on a musical mystery tour courtesy of the sounds of Mellowdrone frontman Jonathan Bates. Bates will hit you with an onslaught of synth effects, yet he never loses focus on his crisp, dance-ready beats. Even his robotically staccato beats unfurl, and morph into beautifully elongated selectro-tring progressions like on “Money Rain Down”.Sunday, August 18
Hot as Sun @ Taix Outdoor
2 pm – 2:30 pm
Their 2013 album Night Time Sound Desire hardly faltered in its 13 songs. Hot As Sun make the kind of songs your 16 year old self wishes it could have been angsty to in high school. It’s emotional pop; and with the kind of catchy hooks you won’t mind running through your head all day, its all the pop without all the guilt.
Kera & The Lesbians @ The Echo
3:40 pm – 4:10 pm
The dry and brooding vocals of Kera Dominque are at the center of this gritty Americana rock band. Like a phoenix from the ashes, there is a dark romanticism that emerges in their desolate tunes. Kera & The Lesbian’s latest blues-inspired single “Nailbiter” features a dirty virtuoso horn straight out of the saloons of a bygone era.
Marni Epstein is a freelance writer and music journalist who has also worked in both the film and digital media industries.
* Correction: A previous version of this post said that Charlie Clark would perform on Sunday. That’s wrong. He will perform on Saturday.