Dirty Beaches, Skybar at the Mondrian, 8/18
By Greg Smith, Staff Writer
I got to chat up Dirty Beaches recently before his poolside set at the Mondrian.
Unassuming save his slicked back pompadour, Alex Zhang Hungtai squashed his cigarette and told us, “I think it’s time.”
His monochromatic backing tracks are all shading and layers, providing a charred canvas with which Hungtai howls onto.
His rockabilly throwback style (recalling the likes of a moodier Roy Orbison) is more homage than derivative; a niche that no one knew needed filling until his set was fin.
Pacific Festival Continued, Oak Canyon Ranch, 8/13
By the end of an epic day of jams, it looked like three artists were neck and neck and neck when it was time to crown the “Best of Pacific Fest 2011.” Let’s break it down, shall we?
When it came to Most Pleasantly Surprised, Bag Raiders took it and ran. I knew less of their songs, however, so I might’ve been a teeny bit less invested.
Oh Snoop Dogg, you’re an icon (apologies to Greg Crosby). You bring me unabashed joy; you’ve got hits for miles and are a true showman. Can I call you next time I’m in Long Beach?
I was looking forward to seeing new wave revivalists and closers Cut Copy for their synthified anthems. Aussies are taking over the world! But alas, all I could think about was how long it would take to get out of the parking lot.
Winner: Snoop by a nose — sheer bucket list status!
[Next week: Bilal gets funky; Sunset Junction either happened or it didn’t.]