Listen: Nick Cave Premieres Exclusive New Tracks, Talks Summer Tour, Eats a Croissant

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Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, photographed by Cat Stevens.

Ed. note: Musician/composer/enigma Nick Cave evidently doesn't believe in taking time off. Less than a year after a sold-out tour with the Bad Seeds in early 2013, he announced Live From KCRW, the band's fourth live album, due out Nov. 29, aka Record Store Day. But thanks to Cave partnering with SF Weekly and a handful of other weeklies around the U.S. for a special invitation-only web press junket, we're excited to help premiere "The Mercy Seat" and "Mermaids," two new tracks from Cave's fourth live album, available for download as of this morning right here. You'll also find a special 24-hour pre-sale for tickets to the band's summer 2014 tour, including the July 7 show at the Warfield. Yet another result: this first-hand account of the event from SF Weekly's Sam Lefebvre.

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Premiere: Brasil's Shouty, Infectious, Guitar-Soaked "Drunk at the Controls"

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Brasil IS a band!
Brasil is a new rock band from Oakland whose members are alumni of scrappy, weird, and delightful guitar outfits the Myonics and the Symbolick Jews. We dig those bands, but Brasil looks to be even hookier, based on the opening salvo "Drunk at the Controls." The song seems all shambolic at first, but if you listen closely you'll notice it's deftly played. Then it gets to that chorus, and oh man -- you just might have that "Drunk at the Controls" line stuck in your head for days. (At least, we have.) So here, with suitably quirky and mask-featuring visuals, is the band's "Drunk at the Controls" video, which precedes a Tiny Telephone-recorded debut album out this October and a release show at Brick and Mortar Music Hall on Monday, Oct. 14. Watch and enjoy:


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Premiere: Watch 18-Year-Old S.F. Songwriter Andrew St. James Perform in a Redwood Grove

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Peter Ellenby
Andrew St. James
"The Lost, the Vain," might seem a pretty world-weary title for an 18-year-old singer-songwriter, but that's Andrew St. James for you. The San Franciscan models himself on all sorts of jaded, sensitive troubadours here on one of the early tracks from his upcoming debut album, Doldrums, out Sept. 24: You'll hear a little Ryan Adams, and definitely plenty of Dylan, as St. James wonders whether being rich and famous is all it's cracked up to be. His lyrics aim for Bob-style second-person specificity, and strike a few false notes along the way (the lines about "hip alternative street folks" and "your summer home in the Hamptons," are awkward, for example). But "The Lost, the Vain" is a promising opening salvo for a dude and his guitar, especially considering the age of the principal involved. We're premiering the video for "The Lost, the Vain" below, in which St. James sings in a redwood grove in Nicasio, Marin. It's pretty:


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Hear the Wrong Words' Catchy New Power-Pop Single, "And It's Not So Pretty"

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The Wrong Words
The Wrong Words are one of Oakland's most tuneful young power-pop bands. We dug the charming, jaunty tunes and funny videos of their self-titled debut, and are excited to premiere the first single off their upcoming second album, "And It's Not So Pretty." The tune is still very much in line with the group's energetic guitar-pop, but with stronger melodies and sharper hooks than what we heard on the debut. "And It's Not So Pretty" will be on Everything Is Free, the Wrong Words' second album, which Chicago label Trouble in Mind will release Sept. 17. Hear and download the new song below, and catch the band performing in S.F. Friday, Aug. 16, at the Verdi Club with comedian Kurt Braunohler, the Business, and more.


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Video Premiere: Tony Molina's Taco Bell-Loving Fuzz-Pop Single, "Don't Come Back"

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Tony Molina in "Don't Come Back"
Bay Area native Tony Molina is unabashedly fond of confessional pop, brooding hardcore, and Taco Bell. As principle songwriter of prolific San Francisco group Ovens, he recorded hundreds of poignant, brief pop songs with thick guitar riffs and blistering leads. But Molina simultaneously fronted a number of ferocious hardcore bands like Lifetime Problems and, currently, Caged Animal. "Don't Come Back" is the lead single from his solo debut LP, Dissed and Dismissed, which continues Ovens' basic, hook-laden guitar pop. But the acoustic intro heard in this video is actually a separate, 12-second track on the album entitled "Sick Ass Riff." The video is directed by Hannah Lew from San Francisco post-punk trio Grass Widow, whose resume also includes videos for the Mallard and Wax Idols.

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Swingin' Utters Premiere "Stuck in a Circle" and Talk New Album and Tour Plans

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Swingin' Utters
We're excited to premiere "Stuck in a Circle," a new song off Poorly Formed, the forthcoming album from S.F. punks Swingin' Utters, out Feb. 19 on Fat Wreck Chords. Written by vocalist/guitarist Darius Koski, "Stuck in a Circle" is a wistful, reflective tune that leaps from acoustic choruses into bristling, racing verses. Its mood is a striking contrast with "The Librarians Are Hiding Something," the soaring first single off Poorly Formed, which was co-written by the vocalists and guitarists Johnny Bonnel and Jack Dalrymple. We recently got in touch with Bonnel and Koski to talk about the new album and the run of Northern California shows Swingin' Utters will be playing in celebration of the new record, which includes a stop at Slim's on Feb. 24. Check out our conversation -- and hear "Stuck in a Circle" -- right here:


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Premiere: Hear Nicki Bluhm and the Gramblers' New Song, "Ravenous"

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After a breakout year in which Nicki Bluhm and the Gramblers got lots of attention online, played a monthlong residency at the Rickshaw Stop, and toured seemingly nonstop, the S.F. folk-rock singer and her band are back with a new single, "Little Too Late." We're thrilled to premiere "Ravenous," the second song of the new release, right here on All Shook Down. Built on a pulsing bassline and an eerie, repeating organ riff, "Ravenous" showcases the warm power of Bluhm's voice, sounding like some long-lost Fleetwood Mac hit. The digital single sees official release tomorrow, Jan. 15. Check it out here:


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Hear This: Maus Haus' Slow-Rumbling "Hey Jean"

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Dark-hued S.F. electro-rockers Maus Haus are back with Light Noise, a brand-new record on brand-new local indie-electronic imprint Lavis Habits. And today we're premiering the song "Hey Jean," a slow-boil of monolithic bass, streaking guitar lines, and Maus Haus' eerie multitracked vocals. Oh, and tambourine. Tambourine is key.

See also:
* Om Records Celebrates New Lavish Habits Imprint with Maus Haus and Blackbird Blackbird


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Maus Haus

Premiere: Shady Blaze and Young Gully's Breezy, SMKA-Produced "Greatness"

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Dropping in October, new mixtape Darkest Before Dawn will see a fresh line-up of Bay Area rappers hopping on tracks crafted by Atlanta production unit S.M.K.A. As a teaser for the project, which will include input from Roach Gigz, Mistah F.A.B., and DaVinci, All Shook Down is proud to present the premiere of "Greatness," a slick and slinky future anthem that features Shady Blaze and Young Gully flowing over a hypnotically breezy production. To complete the listening experience, we also checked in with Shady Blaze and S.M.K.A.'s Mike Walbert to get their own thoughts on the song.

How did the Darkest Before Dawn project come about?
Mike Walbert: We reached out to a popular blog in the Bay Area [Thizzler On The Roof] that covers the music and asked about sorting out this project. We're from Atlanta but we've always been fans of Bay Area music.
Shady Blaze: Matt Werner [from the blog] hit me on Twitter saying he wanted me and Young Gully to collab. That's it right there.


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Premiere: Hip-Hop Crew 40Love Share "Tiki Tiki," Talk Working With Zion I's Zumbi and Their Crazy Animal Masks

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40Love lookin'... wild.
The hip-hop troupe 40Love is currently in possession of the most famous animal masks in modern Bay Area music history. Having made their debut in the video for Wallpaper's "#Stupidfacedd," the plastic faces are now being sported by three-quarters of the group in promotional pictures for upcoming album Dreams Don't Sleep. It's a project which Miss Haze, the non-masked member of the group, promises will be hooked around the relationship between dreams, reality, and the power of "raw spiritual energy."

Ahead of Dreams Don't Stop's July 24 release, All Shook Down got its hands on an exclusive premiere of the new 40Love song "Tiki Tiki." A ferocious, electronic-tinged blast of Bay Area hip-hop funk, it also happens to feature a cameo from Zion I's MC Zumbi. It also seemed like a great excuse to check in with Miss Haze, G-OFF, and producer Mikos (sadly DJ Whooligan was AWOL when we tried to reach him) for a chat about ancient Chinese tales, getting remixed by Bassnectar, and the raw and undiluted power of animal masks.

What's the meaning behind the song title "Tiki Tiki"?
Miss Haze: It's a children's story set in ancient China about a kid who has too long of a name. The whole album is really a mission statement for the power of harnessing visions to transform reality. It's just a raw energy track.

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