Live Show Reviews

Review: Laneway Festival, Melbourne AU, 02/03/18

View from up the hill. Laneway-Melbourne takes place at the Footscray Community Arts Centre, on the banks of the Maribymong River with downtown Melbourne across the way. It’s highly accessible via public transportation. Photo: Andy Hazel

At a time when so many of the largest festivals have become all things to all people, Australia’s Laneway Festival continues to shun the mainstream in order to present fans with stellar lineups of artists much more on the edge. Typical Laneway crowds might be 15,000 and this traveling extravaganza hit six locations around Australia plus Singapore. I had my second Laneway experience in Melbourne on Feb 3. As with any similar event, one must choose when there are 40 different bands on 5 stages. Here are my highlights in the order I saw them.

It was my second time seeing London’s melodic, punkish Dream Wife. They were good last May at The Great Escape in Brighton, UK and they’re really good now. Their self-titled album has dropped here in the US. Melbourne’s own Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever showed why they’ve been snagged for this years Coachella and Primavera festivals. They blasted a large throng with their propulsive set that reminds of The Strokes and Parquet Courts, among others. I’ve been hearing great things about Sylvan Esso live and they delivered. With their big sound, one might be surprised to see they’re actually a two-piece. They had their crowd shaking their bodies. I’d seen Wolf Alice twice before, both times at B3Sci SXSW parties. They went from good to very good and now this is a band that is arena-ready. Look out for them as a significant headliner if their next album is another winner, and kudos to Mike and Troy at B3Sci on their foresight. I’m not much of a hip-hop guy but Anderson Paak was someone I really wanted to see based on live stuff I’d seen online. What a set! It varied from his straight-ahead hip-hop to his retro r&b to disco. Easily the most excited and largest crowd, and Anderson even played some drums. Mac Demarco added to the mayhem when he jumped onstage to do a handstand. This was the evening I got to finally cross Father John Misty off my bucket list. His powerful set was exactly as expected. Biggest surprise for me was Odesza, who played with far more drive and stage visuals than I anticipated. They even brought out a drum line a couple times, which people buzzed about for days afterwards. Pond played their usual high-energy show and showed us some excellent new tunes. Closing the main stage was The War on Drugs who justified that position with their ace and tight musicianship.
Among the people I was sorry to miss due to inevitable festival conflicts: The UK band Shame who I heard put on a strong early afternoon performance. I’ve played them on my radio show along with Aussies The Babe Rainbow who also have a good reputation for their live show and I hated missing both. I’ve seen the massively talented Moses Sumney a couple times in LA and missed him here. Moses is another veteran of a B3Sci SXSW party where it was obvious a few years ago that he was on the cusp of a major ascension. Mac Demarco played three years ago when I was also on hand, and he was a top highlight. I unfortunately had to miss him this time around.
I can’t recommend this festival enough for anyone having the chance to catch up with it next year. Laneway management, the PR people, and the staff on the ground are all top notch. Then there’s this lineup. Nowadays it’s rare to find such a stellar group with an indie focus, all playing in one day.

Anderson Paak played a set that transcended the hip-hop genre and was real hard not to love. Photo: Andy Hazel.

Hear Bruce Rave’s weekly new indie jams on three stations, with show announcements on his Go Deep With Bruce Rave facebook page. Archived shows available on the KX 93.5 site, where you can also subscribe to receiving the weekly two-hour version as an iTunes podcast at no charge.

Stream the best new songs in emerging music with our Top 12 of the Week playlist

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Photos – SKOTT @ Echo, L.A. on 3/21

B3’s Russ Ramos was on hand for B3SCI Records alum SKOTT’s Tuesday show at the Echo in Los Angeles and snapped a few rad photographs which are available for your perusal below.

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Photos: HANA @ The Lyric Theater, Los Angeles 03/24/16


B3’s Russ Ramos was in the house a couple weeks back for rising L.A.-based singer HANA’s set at The Lyric Theater in L.A. Sample below a few of Russ’s favorite shots from the cool set.






HANA (Soundcloud)

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Photos: Donna Missal @ Bardot, Los Angeles 02/08/16


Photos by Russ Ramos

Our man Russ shot last week’s (2/8) rad Donna Missal show at Bardot and picked out a few of his favorite photos from the set which are available for your perusal below.






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Photos : Elohim @ El Rey Theater, Los Angeles 02/04/16


B3’s Russ Ramos got out to Elohim’s Thursday night show at the El Rey in L.A. where she performed an opening set for BAIO. These rad shots capture Russ’s vantage of the gig.



Elohim (Facebook)

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Review: Flume with River Tiber @ Mayan Theater, L.A. on 11/12


Review: Tony Perkis / Photos: Russ Ramos

Red Bull Sound Select should just run for mayor of Los Angeles this of November as they are already running this town… Thursday’s Mayan Theater edition of RBSS was another stellar showing (topped off with free pizza and cookies to those in attendance, well played!)

Freshly minted signee to Boysnoize Records, Taskforce brought the beats to start the night off. The Minneapolis drum machine wizard conjured the crowd into a dance party highlighted by personal favorite, “Police Brace For Violence”.

Heading up north, Toronto native, River Tiber, hit the stage next. Vibey and chill, this Canadian (liked by BADBADNOTGOOD and Drake) laid an emotional haze out and over the packed Mayan.

Finally, Aussie DJ/producer Flume (Harley Streten) who is no stranger to B3SCI or myself (seeing him 4 times now). Flume’s 2013 self-titled LP was outstanding and considered widely one of that year’s best. For the set, Flume played all the hits, some new stuff and a delivered a very special guest; bringing out Andrew Wyatt (of Miike Snow) for an incredible performance of new single “Some Minds”. Flume always brings it (light show, mix, overall production). It was one giant party in DTLA.






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Photos: Tei Shi @ The Roxy, Los Angeles 10/02/15


B3’s Russ Ramos caught Friday’s Tei Shi at the Roxy in West Hollywood and snapped a few rad photographs of the set which are available for your perusal below.





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Bruce Rave reviews Nathaniel Rateliff @ the Regent Theater, Los Angeles 09/10/15


Review by Bruce Rave

To say that Nathaniel Rateliff’s LA show was a hot ticket would be to put it mildly. Originally slated for The Echo, the concert was relocated to The Regent Theater in downtown LA to handle a larger sold-out crowd. A few short weeks had passed since Nathaniel and his Night Sweats broke the buzz meters with their Jimmy Fallon performance. The throng was psyched for this show, with a huge roar going up when the band took the stage. With the crowd knowing what the band are capable of, the set delivered on its hype. The guys are tight and they have a good time. Nathaniel surprised the country with his slick dance moves on TV, but those moves were more limited through the course of a full show. Their “S.O.B.” radio hit started to blow up after Fallon, and the band wisely saved it for the set’s final tune. Yes, they nailed it and when the band left the stage a recording continued with drums and the “oh oh oh oh” hook the song is known for. With the crowd singing along, fists pumping, the band returned and in the same tempo broke into their cover of The Band’s “The Shape I’m In”. What happened next was masterful. Nate Rate and his gang hit us with a reprise of “S.O.B.” without skipping a beat. One of the most effective encores I’ve seen in ages. Almost the entire set scored, and a personal fave was their “Howling At Nothing” from the band’s self-tltled August album. There was a slight momentum loss about two-thirds into the set. I turned to a friend and said what they really needed at that moment was an uptempo-super familiar cover that highlighted their stellar horn section. What came next was the opposite, a slower track that didn’t resonate. Of course the show ended with a tremendous bang. “Nate Rate” are blowing up in a hurry and only a few minor adjustments are required as they play larger and larger venues.

Check out Bruce’s weekly “Go Deep” radio show; air dates and times for “Go Deep” as well archived past shows can be found on Bruce’sblog. Don’t forget to follow Bruce on Twitter too!

Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats (Official)

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Photos: Ryn Weaver @ El Rey Theater, Los Angeles 07/13/15


Photos by Russ Ramos

Our man in L.A. Russ took a sharp set of photos of last night’s Ryn Weaver show at the El Rey in L.A. that are available NOW for your perusing pleasure.









Ryn Weaver california (Twitter)

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Photos: Gallant & Verite @ The Echo, Los Angeles 07/09/15


Photos by Russ Ramos

B3’s Russ Ramos was on had at the Echo on Thursday to catch live a pair quickly rising indie stars, Mind of a Genius innovative R&B man Gallant and pop charts force in waiting Verite. Sample Russ’s excellent set of photos below.










Gallant (Soundcloud)

VÉRITÉ newyork (Soundcloud)

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Photos: Best Coast & Bully @ Wiltern Theater, Los Angeles 06/27/15

WIltern Best Coast Bully by Russ Ramos Marquee

B3SCI’s Russ Ramos recently had the chance to photograph Best Coast and Bully performing at the Wiltern Theater in L.A. Here’s some exclusive shots from the show below.

WIltern Best Coast Bully by Russ Ramos Best Coast 2

WIltern Best Coast Bully by Russ Ramos Best Coast 1

WIltern Best Coast Bully by Russ Ramos Best Coast

WIltern Best Coast Bully by Russ Ramos Bully

WIltern Best Coast Bully by Russ Ramos Bully 3

WIltern Best Coast Bully by Russ Ramos Bully 4

WIltern Best Coast Bully by Russ Ramos Bully 2

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Photos: MISUN, Hidden Charms & Rachel Goodrich @ Lyric Theater, Los Angeles 06/08/15


B3SCI’s Man in Los Angeles Russ Ramos caught Monday’s Lyric Theater show featuring L.A. via DMV band MISUN, UK upstarts Hidden Charms and Miami-bred songwriter Rachel Goodrich. Peep the rad photo set below.











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