After a relatively quiet December, January brings a wide variety of quality events to the City. Some picks below:
January 8: The term "lo-fi" gets tossed around to label a lot of music these days, even though it (often inaccurately) describes a production aesthetic more than any particular sound. Three young SF bands under the lo-fi umbrella join together for a show at Hemlock Tavern on Friday, January 8th. Young Prisms are a quintet that released their debut 12" EP last year on Mexican Summer, coating West Coast pop in a reverb-induced haze. Labelmates Weekend craft noisy, winding songs that are both abrasive and ear-catching. Dominant Legs recently toured with Girls and bandmember Ryan Lynch now splits his time between the two projects. Recent demos from Dominant Legs showcase a Brit-influenced strain of otherworldly pop.
January 20: The Yummy Fur may be best known for once including Franz Ferdinand's Alex Kapranos and Paul Thomson, but the Scottish group's mid-90s tenure spawned a durable cult following. It's difficult not to liken the band to The Fall, particularly given John McKeown's wordy shout-singing, but stateside audiences will be able to judge for themselves on the reunited group's upcoming US tour (their first), which coincides with the January release of a "best of" compilation on What's Your Rupture. The US trip includes a January 20th stop at Cafe Du Nord with two great Bay Area bands, The Mantles and Sonny and the Sunsets, opening the show. Both released strong debut full lengths last year; while the eponymous The Mantles spotlights one of the Bay's best garage pop bands, the Sunsets' Tomorrow is Alright has an eye toward primitive rock and roll and an offbeat sensibility.
January 29: San Francisco's Citay transform classic rock and psychedelic sounds into compositions of sweeping ambition. Bandleader Ezra Feinberg began Citay as a studio project (with producer Tim Green), but the band benefits from a plethora of talented musicians. Dream Get Together is their third album of original material, out January 10th on Dead Oceans. With killer guitar leads abounding, the new album won't be terribly shocking to Citay fans, but it definitely feels like the group is pushing to reach new anthemic heights. Citay joins The Fruit Bats and Extra Classic at Slim's on January 29th.
Also worth seeking out:
Mostly non-musical, but SF Sketchfest starts January 14th and continues through February 2. Plenty of great Bay Area acts go toe to toe with a bunch of excellent LA/NY comedians.
Atlanta's The Black Lips bring their frenzied psych-punk to the Great American Music Hall on January 21st, with two of the Bay's catchiest garage punkers in tow. Show up early to see Nobunny and the Ramones-influenced Personal and the Pizzas.