Category: Fool's Gold

KCRW holiday concerts slated for Dec. 2, 3 at the Orpheum

Sam Beam-Iron & Wine 
KCRW-FM (89.9) has enlisted a cadre of acts that have been championed on its airwaves for a pair of holiday shows Dec. 2 and 3 at the Orpheum Theatre in Los Angeles to help support the station’s programming costs.

The Dec. 2 lineup is topped by reggae star Jimmy Cliff, and also includes pop singer Brett Dennen, world music group Fool’s Gold, psychedelic-funk band White Denim, Oklahoma chamber pop group Other Lives and L.A. singer-songwriter Mia Doi Todd.

The following night’s show will feature headliner Iron & Wine, L.A. indie pop band the Belle Brigade, English rock-noir singer-songwriter-guitarist Anna Calvi, Malaysian pop singer Zee Avi and retro country-folk duo the Secret Sisters.

“When envisioning a holiday concert to celebrate KCRW, I wanted to bring it back to basics and create an event that resonated with the spirit of the season,” station music director and “Morning Becomes Eclectic” host Jason Bentley said in a statement.

Tickets will be $55 to $200 and go on sale Tuesday to KCRW subscribers at www.kcrw.com, and a week later to the general public.

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-- Randy Lewis

Photo of Sam Beam, lead singer of Iron & Wine, during a concert in January at Los Angeles' Wiltern Theatre. Credit: Michael Robinson Chavez / Los Angeles Times

Producer Lewis Pesacov helms L.A.'s sounds of summer

Fools300 Inside Lewis Pesacov's recording space, on the first floor of the Bedrock rehearsal complex in a dodgy stretch of Echo Park near the 2 Freeway, there is an oil portrait of the entire team of his production company Black Iris. The mostly bedraggled-looking staff is depicted with mock-Victorian splendor. It's hung next to a gigantic mounted marlin. The decor is a hilarious vision of winking, masculine mock-self regard.

And yet it might not be wholly unwarranted for the Fool's Gold and Foreign Born guitarist to begin preparing wall space for accolades.

In the last few weeks, his work behind the boards for Best Coast’s excellent upcoming debut, "Crazy For You," and a trunk-rattling rap remix of Local Natives' "Wide Eyes" have unexpectedly vaulted him to the center of L.A.'s 2010 summer-sound zeitgeist. 

Continue reading »

Local Natives unveil 'Wide Eyes'(Fool's Gold Remix)'*

Wideeyes3-1 Despite its sunny-day-in-California sound, "Wide Eyes,"* by Local Natives, tackles sinister and spiritual terrain. Lyrics about evil spirits, fear and questions of faith balance the celestial harmonies of the Silver Lake-based band.

Yet on his "Wide Eyes" remix, Lewis Pesacov of the Black Iris collective finds a way to mirror the song's uneasy subject matter, burying the Natives' pretty boy coos under an industrial coat of grime.

Crafting a beat reminiscent of El-P, buzzing with claustrophobic synths and snapping drums, Pesacov displays his versatility, having been previously best known for the Afro-pop-infused guitar lines in Foreign Born and Fool's Gold.

Enlisting rapper Aristotle Pop a Bottle to jump-start the track with a 16-bar rap, the new version fulfills the old-school definition of a remix: something that provides a fresh twist on the original, rather than just blank-check raps from big names. 

The "Wide Eyes" remix is the A side of the limited-edition 7" vinyl that Pesacov's Black Iris imprint will be releasing in the near future. A track from Philadelphia's Free Energy will be on the B-Side. In the meantime, it's summer and this jams.

-- Jeff Weiss

Download:
MP3: Local Natives -- "Wide Eyes (Fool's Gold Remix)"

*Correction: The original version of this post got the name of the Local Natives song wrong. It's called "Wide Eyes," not "Eyes Wide." We have fixed it above.


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Fool’s Gold is the real thing in world music

Fool'sgold600

A residency at the Echo helped the band lock into its strengths while building its fan base.

In April, Fool's Gold, the Afropop-influenced outfit led by singer/bassist Luke Top and guitarist Lewis Pesacov, played a weekly residency at the Echo that burns bright in their memories.

"Those were our best shows ever," Top said on the phone from Eugene, Ore., a stop on the band's current  North American tour with fellow buzz act Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. "We got to design our own bills, our own lighting and DJs. Every week we packed it with our people. It was an amazing awesome dance party."

The residency also spurred Fool's Gold into action. The L.A.-based group, which can swell to include as many as 15 players in concert, acquired a manager in Troubadour booking head Brian Smith and decided to record their long-gestating, self-titled debut album, which was released in September.

Comprising eight warm and sprawling songs, the collection amalgamates Ethiopian folk, Ghanaian Highlife, the Malian desert rock of Tinariwen, roller-skate rink R&B and the early '80s punch of Adam Ant and Duran Duran. Anchoring the brew is Pesacov's squiggly lead guitar lines and Israel native Top's melismatic vocals, nearly all in Hebrew.

"Singing in a foreign language," Top said, "is a personal journey for me. It's allowed me to express my singing in a grander way than before."
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Fool's Gold gets ready to face the nation

Even in Los Angeles, it’s a rare week when music fans are treated to the grandeur of Thom Yorke and Fever Ray. So it was easy to miss Tuesday's low-key album release party for the L.A. rhythm rebel band Fool’s Gold at the Masonic Temple at the Hollywood Forever cemetery. But for the crowd of taste makers and mavens that made it, the show was a quick look at one of the most promising new acts currently emerging from this city.

Delving into the moodier side of their recently released debut full-length on the IAMSOUND label, the percussive, pan-ethnic soul of songs such as “Nadine” created a dreamy atmosphere in the ornate setting. Ending with a celebratory take on “Ha Dvash,” the band members kept the song going as they filed from the stage and back into the room with the bar, where the party continued.

It was a fitting warm-up as the band prepares to embark on a nationwide tour with another buzzed-about L.A. band, modern hippie heroes Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros.

Fool's Gold perform with Metronomy and Destructo at the Roxy, 9009 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood on Friday, Oct. 9. Doors are at 9 p.m.

-- Scott T. Sterling
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