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.
“Friend Detector” – The Mormons
It’s crazy to think that The Mormons can play such a riveting set with a straight face. They crash their gigs in a polite manner, decked out in bicycle helmets, short sleeve shirts, ties, just like the missionaries on bikes that dot the country with their polite smiles and religious teachings.
When the band, not the religious group, begin to play it’s all out mayhem. Think Devo meets a performance exhibition, where lead singer Patrick Jones thrashes about on and off stage, often times shaking hands during a set. Their style of punk reminiscent of, say, Subhumans, unrelenting, drum driven, the splattering of sweat from guitar and bass seeming to fuel The Mormon’s intensity. – Nathan Solis
“Summer Days” – The Reflections
Marching a path into those dog days of summer, we mark the occasion with The Reflections’ ode to the season. Bleached drummer Jon Safley and Darian Zahedi have created the kind of emotional dynamite here that makes the perfect companion to those stifling Los Angeles afternoons. The punchy organ opening quickly transitions into that obsessively aching punctuation that one might find on a track off an album called Limerence. Zahedi’s voice delicately paints their musical malaise with “Dust in the doorway / Dirt on the ground / Am I thinking about you cuz you’re no longer around?”. Ponder that with The Reflections when they play Echo Park Rising later this month. – Marni Epstein
Something I Need To Break” – Olin & The Moon
Somber at times, often smoldering with a story to tell, Olin & The Moon offer a brand of alt-country that has found a comfy niche in Los Angeles. Intensely personal, the group from Sun Valley, Idaho play like a late night house band, guitar solos, pedal steel and deep rooted bass notes lingering long after the night is over. Olin & The Moon now call Silver Lake and Echo Park home and is currently in the process of recording a new album with Ryan Adams.
Brothers David and Travis LaBrel round out the guitar section, while Marshall Vore on drums, Brian McGinnis on banjo and pedal steel and Kyle Vicioso on bass flesh out the sound of the group. Fans come from all across Southern California to see an Olin & The Moon show. Expect plenty of them at their set at Echo Park Rising, August 17 & 18. – Nathan Solis
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.