Monday, October 24, 2016

Now Playing @ The Listening Station: Goth Tropic, Hot As Sun & Thee Commons

By Marni Epstein & Nathan Solis

Welcome to The Listening Station, The Eastsider’s dose of must-listens from local bands. Get to know your community by getting to know the music they are making. Feel free to let us know what Eastside bands or performers – in any genre- you are listening to by sending an email to [email protected] Follow Eastsider Music on Twitter for more stories and sounds from the Eastside music scene.

Flesh Dance – Gothic Tropic

Los Angeles breeds a hodgepodge of bands, groups with colorful bottoms and faded tops, a place where the skeezy guitar can visit the fruitful percussions and no one bats an eye.

Gothic Tropic is a love note to the Los Angeles milieu of influences and motivations, that old-world guitar noodling celebrated with tribal drum work, a real special type of vocal harmony pitched into the miasma, all of it just dripping with humidity and friction.

Cecilia Della Peruti does the blues finger strut along her guitar, while bassist Daniel Denton keeps rhythm with drummer Lia Braswell’s abrasive approach to keeping time, although it’s all relative in the end. This Echo Park outfit makes it worth the trek into the next neighborhood where there might be another genre budding from a tree branch. – Nathan Solis

“Mother I’m Alive” – Hot As Sun

Hot As Sun’s 2013 album “Night Time Sound Desire” – which sounds like they just threw some darts at a bunch of words on a dart board – was written and recorded in their Glassell Park basement. From top to bottom, its 13 songs are made for those Saturday nights that deliriously turn into Sunday mornings. A blinding dose of indie incandescence.

One such track, “Mother I’m Alive,” shares more than title similarities with Metric and their tune “Help I’m Alive.” Musically, both offer an ominous backdrop whose beats pulsate with a heavy heart. Yet still, on either track the aching female cries amid such a backdrop of despair ( Hot As Sun’s Jamie Jackson, in this case) project a brilliantly misplaced feeling that salvation, is indeed, within reach. Having opened for the likes of Gotye and Foster the People expect big things from this Eastside trio. – Marni Epstein

“Rabbit and Rattles” – Thee Commons

“Rabbits and Rattles” from Boyle Heights’ Thee Commons is raw California garage rock tinged with early Rhythm and Blues. Their lo-fi recordings were released earlier this year on their Sunburn at Midnight EP, which also highlights their cumbia chicha leanings as well.  However, on “Rabbits and Rattles,” in particular,  Thee Commons show just how little pretense there is surrounding their music in this riff-heavy piece of folklore. – Marni Epstein

Marni Epstein is a freelance writer and music journalist who has also worked in both the film and digital media industries. Nathan Solis is a Highland Park resident who writes about and photographs the L.A. music scene. You can find more of Solis stories, reviews and photos at Smashed Chair.

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