April was a great month for concerts in Phoenix. Give credit where credit's due -- Coachella's proximity had a lot of great acts like Broken Bells, Sleigh Bells, Lana Del Ray, and others coming through the Valley. If you missed any of these shows, that's really too bad, but you can always live vicar ... More >>
2014 was a year of Coachella firsts for me -- it was my first time camping and not going as press. It was a series of highs and lows all bundled up into one fun, yet exhausting weekend. I'm still coughing up dust, but I can say this was one of the most fun Coachellas I've attended yet. I learn som ... More >>
Round one of Coachella is over and damn, was it a good one! We're all soar, sunburned and smiling. For those of you heading to Cali for Round 2, here's the best of what we saw during the festival's first weekend.
Let me speak on behalf of everyone by saying "whoa, the 2014 Coachella lineup came out early." The news is still pretty fresh--Coachella sent out the lineup email a little after 9 p.m. last night, causing the internet to blow up as usual. It's tough to see beyond the headliners--though you should be ... More >>
Mickey Avalon is constantly loaded. He's loaded with clever rhymes and catchy hooks, played by DJs to writhing Hollywood club kids who don't understand that half of the dark memories Mickey shares are actual experiences. When he started out around 2004, he was loaded with the burden of family memb ... More >>
What better way to celebrate the nation's birthday than taking a day off. Or, as Homer Simpson would agree, "Celebrate your country's independence by blowing up a small part of it" (we mean fireworks, duh). You've probably earned a day off, so have a beer or five, eat some barbeque, and watch some f ... More >>
"Will you still love me when I'm no longer young and beautiful?" asks Lana Del Rey in the chorus of her latest song, "Young and Beautiful" -- the first single from The Great Gatsby's soundtrack. Del Rey teamed up with the film's director, cowriter, and co-producer, Baz Luhrmann, to bring us another ... More >>
Phoenix! It's our top five must-see shows this week.
Once again, it's a sort of apprenticeship with Woody Guthrie that's drawn Billy Bragg into a new realm. Thirty years since his debut, the seven-song Life's a Riot with Spy Vs Spy, Bragg is back with a new album, Tooth & Nail, which came out Tuesday, March 18, on Cooking Vinyl. Bragg calls the albu ... More >>
By Brittany Spanos At what point did teen girls suddenly just become wrong? "Serious" music fans seem to have universally accepted a critique of quality that befalls any artist who willingly sells to the rabid teen girl market and stigmatized the fans who dare to sometimes be male or at least above ... More >>
Our sister paper, the Village Voice's annual Pazz & Jop music critic's poll is live, and the results are in: Frank Ocean's neo-neo-soul record channel ORANGE is the album of the year, and Carly Rae Jepsen's infectious (and impossible to escape) "Call Me Maybe" is the single of the year. This yea ... More >>
Lana Del Rey's "Cola" put some interesting visuals in our heads, especially that line about the particular flavor of her labia - "My pussy tastes like Pepsi Cola," she sings. As we've already gone into, local pranksters MAN-CAT took the vulgarity one step further, creating their own ad campaign, com ... More >>
Are you a musician? Is your group having issues? Critic Jessica Hopper has played in and managed bands, toured internationally, booked shows, produced records, worked as a publicist, and is the author of The Girls' Guide to Rocking, a how-to for teen ladies. She is here to help you stop doing it wro ... More >>
The late, great and totally irreverent comedian Bill Hicks once predicted the ultimate television commercial, describing it as such: "Here's the woman's face. Beautiful. Camera pulls back. Naked breast. Camera pulls back, she's totally naked, legs apart, two fingers right here and it just says 'Dri ... More >>
Let's face it, the Mayan Calendar thing is kind of silly, but I'm still obsessed with it because I often ruminate on The End. It's an important scenario to consider, no matter how unlikely, because it makes us ask the Big Questions and wonder how meaningful/meaningless our lives truly are. One of m ... More >>
Yeah, yeah, yeah...we get it. Mondays suck (we've read Garfield). But it means the start of a new week, which means a bunch of killer shows in and around Phoenix. And here are a few of the coolest -- our top five must-see shows this week.
One man band basement recordings continue to grow in popularity. Due to its minimalist approach, songwriting is key. Perfume Genius, the moniker of Mike Hadreas records songs about homophobia, pedophilia, and suicide that are strangely warm and therapeutic. We caught up with Hadreas to discuss hav ... More >>
Curious about what's going on around town this weekend? Need some suggestions where to rock, dance, or krump in the Valley of the Sun? Don't fret: These are our Five Shows to See This Weekend.
If you've ever felt like all music on the radio is the same, you're not alone. Your grandmother felt the same way once. It's an old complaint that has always bugged me, because sure, the latest Rhianna single is a pile of dogshit, but I hate blanketing all music with this strain of despair. There ... More >>
Editor's note: Occasionally, Up on the Sun contributor Christina Caldwell chimes in on local music, tackling topics like "how to get press" and asking questions like "What makes the ideal music venue?" This week, she addresses a topic we've looked at before -- the concept of local clubs doing month ... More >>
Saturday Night Live is ending its 37th season with a bang. Last week, classic alum Will Ferrell hosted the show, reprising his parody of George W. Bush, and the 100th SNL Digital Short was aired. Things look to get even bang-ier with this Saturday's season finale, featuring Mick Jagger taking the ... More >>
Alt-country stumblers Deer Tick know how to keep up the pace. Songwriter John McCauley started the band back in 2004, and since then it's morphed from a solo project into a full-fledges rock 'n' roll machine, spitting cheap domestic beer and rangy Americana fury. Back in October they released Divi ... More >>