TVD Recommends: Culture Collide Los Angeles, 10/16–10/18

This year for its fifth anniversary, Culture Collide, “a convergence of inspiration,” will not only be invading our fair city but also our sister to the north, San Francisco, as well as New York City with a series of stages and even more bands than years prior.

The festival’s name reflects its international line up and the bookers have searched far and wide to bring some of the most interesting underground scenes from around the globe to converge in one arena. It’s a rock ‘n’roll United Nations—and these are but a few of the bands we have our sights set upon.

THURSDAY
MØ – 10:30PM at The Echoplex
There is something in the water in Scandinavia that is turning out perfecto electropop. I do love these songs and although some of MØ’s album can be thrown into the indistinguishable electronic pop pile—there is LIVE music going on here, including a horn section, which gives anyone an automatic 7, sight unseen in my book.

I have never seen her live, but anyone who can rock a side ponytail, a sports bra, and leggings, has a horn section, and is known to crowd surf on a regular basis may catapult themselves to an 8.5—sight unseen.

Rock n’ Roll Radio – 11PM at The Champagne Room
Having a song called “Shut up and Dance” is like having me at hello. Dance inducing rock from of all places—South Korea—and played by the most unlikely crew of characters.

FRIDAY
Dune Rats – 8:10PM at the Echo
A Super Man song to make you forget about Three Doors Down. If you are up for a dose of of rock that sounds like the Orwells on a surfboard among what is bound to be a rowdy crowd, this is something to see. I can’t promise anything but you will most likely walk out of there having been sufficiently crowd surfed and drenched in beer.

Bad//Dreems – 3:15PM at the Echo
From their bio: “Adelaide. There’s no time to wallow in the mire. If you do you’re just gonna get sucked away. Bad//Dreems know this. That’s why they got together the summer before last. Scratch the surface here and you find another world, far removed from the leafy inner suburbs. The empty jail on the edge of the city. A decade long bikie war. The Family. This is the weird murder capital. The weed capital. It is this world, constructed or not that Bad//Dreems attempt to capture in their debut EP, Badlands.”

Enough Said. GO SEE THIS.

Cloud Nothings – 9PM at the Ernie Ball World Stage
Punk bands are not necessarily known for being incredibly tight musicians, but Cloud Nothings possess a punk rock maturity where even their most sloppy and aggressive songs feel completely cohesive and incredibly tight. The word maturity was thrown around in numerous reviews of Here and Nowhere Else and you know a band is the real deal where you are almost more excited about where their sound will go than where it is now.

SATURDAY
Level & Tyson – 4PM at the Ernie Ball World Stage
I stumbled across these guys while researching this preview and was pleasantly surprised to find this gem! Describing themselves as noise rock—but like my theory about Scandinavia and having catchy songs and pop perfection teeming in the water—there is noise here, but some poetic noise that I want to hear more of.

A Million Billion Dying Suns – 7PM at the Church
If their name alone doesn’t draw you in, the exceptionally high level of musicianship this group possesses as individuals and collectively should be enough. They have been described as “Shoegaze shredding” but there is nothing about them that will make you want to look at your shoes. The only involvement your shoes may have is picking up splotches from your face melting.

Gateway Drugs – 8PM at the Champagne Room
These guys describe themselves as drug pop, have a video called the “Death of Kim Jong Il” and have played with Source Family members in a tribute to Ravi Shankar. Sold! If you are craving what could possibly be some sludgy Brian Jonestown Massacre B-Sides, this is how you should spend the 8 o’clock hour.

The complete Culture Collide schedule can be viewed here. Los Angeles Festival info can be gathered here.

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