Art + Music = MUSEing

Art + Music = MUSEing at LACMA w/ Saint Motel & The Silent Comedy
By: Trina Green

Ladies and gentlemen, the summer is here…upon us like a fine sheen of sweat on our sexy skin. You like that visual? Yeah, us too.

It’s official: museums are fun! Especially when there’s a summer music series involved. Oh yes, it’s a beautiful thing here in LA because it’s an opportunity to celebrate visual art and auditory tunes, things that many of us love above and beyond reason. Thursday night kicked off the Los Angeles County Museum of Art Muse Concert Series in conjunction with the Tim Burton exhibit (holy vroom, vroom Batman!) and it was a hella blast.

With a stage set in front of the lit and luminous piece “Urban Light” by Chris Burden, Muse paid homage to art and the thriving and lively music scene of Southern California. One museum, one stage, two bad ass bands equaled bringing some high quality and unique versions of common genres to new eyes and ears. Saint Motel and The Silent Comedy just jumped off their co-headlining Summer Sweat Tour and stop #3 was here at LACMA.

Folk music has its place in the world and, more often than, not tends to soothe the spirit rather than raise the roof. Enter the San Diego quartet The Silent Comedy who are Joshua (vocals/bass), Jeremiah Zimmerman (piano/guitar/vocals), Chad Lee (drums/percussion), and Justin Buchanan (banjo/mandolin/guitar) who are all about kicking your musical ass with their incredible, must-be-seen-to-be-believed live show where they tell tales of the human condition and make your soul and body move in the process. It’s folk and it’s rock and it’s one of the best (and freshly unique) things to come on the music scene in years. Ever seen a dude head bang with a banjo? It’s epic on a whole other level. They were accompanied by the live painting from artist Mike Maxwell who prettied up Justin’s keyboard base. Now The Silent Comedy had a healthy number of fans in tow at LACMA and a fair crowd when their set kicked off, but approximately 1 1/2 songs in and that “fair” crowd grew deep with fascinated folks sucked into their sound, their feel, and retro aesthetic they project. That’s just how irresistible The Silent Comedy is and how they roll. And a finer dressed bunch of good-looking guys, you’d be hard pressed to find.

But wait, there’s more!

LA has no shortage of really good bands to choose from and Saint Motel sits high on the “Best” list and the ladies love them. Love them! They are AJ Jackson (guitar and vocals), Aaron Sharp (lead guitar), Dak Lerdamornpong (bass) and Greg Erwin (drums), all former film students and it was more than appropriate that they be a part of the inaugural Muse concert series because the nature of their powerhouse music and fiercely electric live shows is highly artistic an stimulating. Even though they were sans the full package and impact of their usual background imagery, they still created a sonic landscape that’s as visual as it is audible. Kicking off their set with the shamelessly pop nod towards hedonism “Do Everything Now”, the hands started clapping, the feet started dancing, and the museum was once again rocking. These Saint Motel guys are young bucks but they’re creativity and intelligence show through their badass musicianship and unconventional song structures. We dig what they do and even have to tip them for boldly going where not everyone dares to go: covering a song by The Who. The majority of the room may not have known the acid trip Saint Motel slipped under their tongue, but it was a playful and damned good version of “A Quick One While He’s Away” and if you felt even the faintest urge to do a guitar windmill, well then here’s a “m/” for you!

Good times, boys and girls.

Check the photos by Genie Sanchez:

The Roxy at LACMA

The Roxy is jumping into the art world with music! On July 7, LACMA & The Roxy present MUSE Concert Series featuring Saint Motel & The Silent Comedy.

The bands will be playing in front of Chris Burden’s Urban Light that you have, no doubt, seen while driving down Wilshire Blvd.

The Silent Comedy live experience will be alongside live painter Mike Maxwell.

Saint Motel – Puzzle Pieces
SAINT MOTEL – Puzzle Pieces by saintmotel

The Silent Comedy – Gasoline
Gasoline by The Silent Comedy

There is a $25 ticket that will, not only, get you access to this awesome show but the brand new Tim Burton exhibit as well! For more ticket information click here

LA Vegan Beer Fest

By: Brent X Mendoza

TOMORROW: Get your beer tasting on at The Roxy’s 2nd Annual Vegan Beer Festival. With over 40 craft beers, a half-dozen food trucks, and four kick ass bands, there will be enough excitement to send your vegan head spinning.

Helping us pre-game before tomorrow’s big day, we spoke with members of The Stripminers, The Silent Comedy, and The Mowgli’s, testing their knowledge of vegan beer, and testing their sampling memories. Here are the facts…

Any vegan band members? If so, how strict are you with your veganism?

Joshua Zimmerman (The Silent Comedy): My brother (Jeremiah Zimmerman) and I have been vegetarian for seventeen years, and vegan on-and-off for different sections of that time. Our parents are raw food vegans.

Matt Di Panni (The Mowgli’s): I tried going veggie once…I figured it wasn’t going to work out when I realized I wanted a cheeseburger tattooed on me.

Katie Earl (The Mowgli’s): No vegans… we probably would be, but there are no McVegan options on the McValue menu. This event is actually a great way to explore vegan options though, and it makes me realize that there are plenty of awesome alternatives.

What do you know about vegan beer? What kind of animal product would you imagine they put in beer?

Brett Anderson (The Stripminers): Hops come from bunnies, right?

Holland Greco (The Stripminers): I think most breweries put fish farts in beer. That’s an animal product, right? Thank goodness for vegan beer!

Paul Stinson (The Stripminers): I’m probably one of those people who thought that all beer was vegan before. I can’t really imagine what sort of animal might end up in beer, ick! Unless it’s deer; is there deer beer?

Joshua Zimmerman (The Silent Comedy): I know that some fish-derived products can be used in the filtration process of certain beers, but I am not exactly sure which beer companies are making vegan, or non-vegan, products. I have also heard that they add pink elephants to beer in volume, which seems to be a clear violation of veganism.

Most looking forward to sampling: Firestone Hemp Ale, Lagunitas Hairy Eyeball, Woodchuck Granny Apple Cider, or Dogfish Head’s Festina Peche (fermented with peaches)?

Holland Greco (The Stripminers): Lagunitas Hairy Eyeball, because Lagunitas made a few varieties of delicious Frank Zappa beer that I loved.

Joshua Zimmerman (The Silent Comedy): Dogfish Head always has interesting beers, so I am curious about the Festina Peche.

Mike Vincze (The Mowgli’s): I love the smell of fermented peaches in the morning!

Any good “beer goggles” stories?

Brett Anderson (The Stripminers): Doing dishes wasted is fun, but frequently they don’t look as shiny in the morning, much like people.

Paul Stinson (The Stripminers): I’ve actually had “beer contacts” specially made so I can keep them in all the time.

Joshua Zimmerman (The Silent Comedy): We have many, but probably none we should share in public.

Matt Di Panni (The Mowgli’s): I don’t go to Mexico anymore. That’s as much as I am willing to divulge.

Katie Earl (The Mowgli’s): Yeah, one time I was drunk and a bunch of boys asked me to join their band. Over a year later, here I am. Le sigh…

Most anxious to stuff your vegan face at: the Seabirds Truck (“O.C.’s Original Veggie Truck”), Fresh Fries Truck, Mandoline Grill Truck (Vietnamese cuisine), Dosa Truck (South Indian street food), Doomie’s (vegan taqueria), The Frankenstand (vegan sausage and franks), or Luscious Vegan Desserts?

Brett Anderson (The Stripminers): Doomie’s! Tacos are the best! And so many places won’t make veggie tacos, which makes no sense, so the history of exasperation, and the scarcity, increases the value even more.

Paul Stinson (The Stripminers): I think I’m gonna bring my Hairy Eyeball over to the Frankenstand and see what emerges.

Joshua Zimmerman (Silent Comedy): It’s got to be Frankenstand! There is nothing better than an awesome vegan sausage after some beers! Brings back good memories of the street-dogs in Seattle and Austin.

Katie Earl (The Mowgli’s): I’m all about the deserts so I’m stoked to try Luscious, but the Frankenstand looked and smelled awesome and so did Mandoline, so I might have to try it all!

Favorite L.A. vegan restaurant?

Brett Anderson (The Stripminers): Cafe Gratitude is an oasis, and Cru smells like heaven’s kitchen. Oh, and Sage is a future favorite.

Joshua Zimmerman (Silent Comedy): I’m a big fan of Native Foods. For a chain-restaurant, they make some really tasty dishes that feel like a lot of care is put into them.

Katie Earl (The Mowgli’s): Follow Your Heart in Canoga Park, CA. Amazing lasagna, even if you aren’t vegan, and great vegan milkshakes!

Who will be the first member of the band to go nuts with samples?

Holland Greco (The Stripminers): Paul Stinson because he’s so enthused about Vegan Beer!

Paul Stinson (The Stripminers): Not possible, we’re professionals

Joshua Zimmerman (Silent Comedy): Our alcohol tolerance is so high, I don’t think any of us will. But we will definitely have a designated driver taking us away from the show!

Mike Vincze (The Mowgli’s): Me or Katie? I am allergic to most alcohol, two drinks and I’m red as a tomato and twice as drunk as your uncle on New Years.


The 2nd Annual Los Angeles Vegan Beer Fest will take place at The Roxy Theatre. Tickets will be available at the door and the event is 21+.
For more information & a full list of breweries click here.

SXSW Round Up

This year, The Roxy packed up and went to Austin for our biggest year at SXSW. The 2011 AUSTINROX, presented by MiO, featured two nights at the Rusty Spurs with some of the biggest acts around including Neon Trees, Fitz and the Tantrums, AWOLNATION, Lenka and more.

Before day one even began, we were handing out band survival kits with ChinaShop and Fox. The bands were so stoked to get some awesome swag including shirts, magazines, Red Bull, condoms, koozies, guitar picks, MiO liquid water enhancer, and just about everything they would need on the road.

Night one had a line around the block hours before doors. By the time 7:30 rolled around, people flooded in and stayed for the entire night. The Tender Box opened the main stage and Olin & the Moon in the lounge. Vanaprasta warmed up the crowd just in time for everyone to lose it during AWOLNATION. Night one featured one of our new favorites, The Silent Comedy, who killed it in the lounge. We also had amazing sets from, the legendary, Linda Perry’s new band Deep Dark Robot, Brite Futures and many others. By the time night one ended, we couldn’t believe we had another day to go all over again, but little did we know, night two would be even more out of control than the first.

Andy Grammer opened the main room and we had very special guest, Nick Jonas, hanging to watch! The amazing heartfelt, Lenka, took the stage after Andy and got the dance party good & ready for Fitz and the Tantrums. Fitz was quite possibly, THE band to see at SXSW. They got the crowd sweaty and moving. If you weren’t dancing at least a little bit during this set, you probably didn’t have a pulse.

Neon Trees was the most anticipated band of the whole show and they went off without a hitch. The room had barely calmed down after Fitz when they took the stage and sent the audience into a tizzy. We got a chance to hang out with them before their set backstage and you can check the photos here. Saint Motel was a quick fill-in for Semi Precious Weapons and we couldn’t have had a better sub than one of our favorite LA bands. Wicker closed the party with a bang and awesome dance party.

The MiO and Popchips ladies were in the house providing everyone with deliciously flavored water and chips for days. Check out what everyone did with the Popchips photobooth here. We were streaming live on Ustream and Hipstamatic even showed up to feature night 2!

Big, big thanks is due to Swinghouse Studios for working their butts off producing the night, Wavaflow Studios for doing an amazing job filming both days, and our amazing sponsors MiO (if you haven’t already do yourself a favor and checkout their hilarious videos with Sassy Gay Friend), Popchips, and WoWee One.

Check out photos by the Sunset Strip’s, Genie Sanchez.

For the full set of photos click here.