If you're a devotee of Depeche Mode, New Order, and The Cure, Wesley Eisold is your man. If you're not, well, he may still be your man. Cold Cave, Eisold's musical nom de plume, is quite a departure from his past endeavors. Having fronted hardcore and noise rock bands Give Up The Ghost and Some Girls, with Cold Cave Eisold dives head first into '80s electronic synth-pop. The opening track, "The Great Pan is Dead," is a high energy Franz Ferdinand-style assault complimented by Eisold's melodramatic vocals, which bridge the small gap between Robert Smith and Dave Gahan. Read More
Fleet Foxes’ 2008 self-titled debut mixed down-home sonic cooking with present-day sensibilities. While the folky band’s introduction was a little rough around the edges, it did garner critical acclaim with SPIN Magazine naming frontman Robin Pecknold the Voice of the Year for 2008. Fast-forward two and a half years. Pecknold remains in SPIN’s good graces (he’s the current cover boy), and Fleet Foxes’ Helplessness Blues (Sub Pop) is a smoother, more palatable offering from the Seattle-based band. Read More
Zola Jesus (aka Russian/American singer Nika Roza Danilova) is a pint-sized powerhouse of operatic enchantment. No, really. She's tiny. And her voice is huge. I know what you're saying. "Jen. Why so dramatic? Please." But Danilova's show at NYC's Bowery Ballroom last Saturday was nothing short of mesmerizing theatrics. I can't just say, "Girl got up on stage and sang like hell." That would just be wrong. The bleach-blonde siren took the stage like a tempest in full force wearing a voluminous orange hooded cape, gray short shorts, and gray leggings sans shoes. (Yes, she was barefoot. Read More

Trust @ Coco 66

BY Jen Hazen in Music

When I arrived at Brooklyn’s Coco 66 last Friday to see Toronto-based synth-wave duo Trust, the stage was empty, but there was so much theatrical fog wafting in the air that the closet-Goth in me became very giddy, very fast. Wait. Goths can’t be giddy. I became very melodramatic. Prior to the show, I had only heard one dark, sparse electrobotic track of white hot gold named “Candy Walls,” from a two-song 7” via Sacred Bones—the band’s only release to date. Yes, I just made up that word “electrobotic. Read More
Brooklyn-based trio Vivian Girls’ music just feels so, well, Brooklyn—a little gritty, rough around the edges, with lots of heart, and lots going on. I love Brooklyn. So much, in fact, that I live there atop the largest oil spill in U.S. history. No, I don't drink the water. Anyway, when I saw the trio of Cassie Ramone, Katy Goodman, and Fiona Campbell (new drummer!) play at New York City’s Webster Hall recently, it was evident that the ladies don't seem to care much about projecting a slick image. It's refreshing actually. No lace, striped tights, or leather. Read More
Sometimes I really hate feeling so much. As a recently divorced lady, I don't want to feel a goddamn thing right now. No, thanks. I'd rather work. That's it. So when I took my seat at Radio City Music Hall to see Explosions in the Sky on April 6, I had no idea that for the next hour and 15 minutes the past several years with my ex-huz would flash in my mind like a dusty old film projector spinning reels of the good, the bad, the end. Yes, Explosions' long-drawn-out epic instrumentals can do that to you whether you like it or not. Read More

Holy Ghost! @ Terminal 5

BY Jen Hazen in Music

  They're young. They're super cute. And they're coming to a dance floor near you. Actually, Holy Ghost! is probably on the verge of taking over every club's sound system around the globe. Okay, not every club, but tons of them. I checked out the five-piece Brooklyn-based band Saturday night at Terminal 5, wondering how their infectious club beats would translate to a live stage performance. All I can say is: Holy shit! Holy Ghost! is one of my fave bands right now.   I'm not a huge fan of club music, but these tracks transcend all of that. Read More
As blue strobe lights flashed and the loud speakers played thrash music from an anonymous metal band, The Mountain Goats stepped onto the stage for their second of three sold out shows at New York City’s Bowery Ballroom. For the uninitiated, this incongruous introduction might prove alarming, but veteran fans will know that the band have made a tradition of introducing themselves in this ostentatious way. This hyperliterate indie rock band—which occasionally adds and subtracts members from many locales—centers around California-born vocalist/guitarist John Darnielle. Read More
Before I went to the Wild Flag show at NYC's Radio City Musical Hall Wednesday night, I checked out the band's Facebook page. Because I "like" them. Not because I enjoy staring at pics of Carrie Brownstein every day or anything. A post from the band read: "Hope Radio City is ready for the rough and the raw." Rough. Raw. Just how I like it. My giddiness jacked up to the 10,000th power. Wild Flag's line-up is nothing short of astounding. Carrie Brownstein (Sleater-Kinney), Mary Timony (Helium), Janet Weiss (Quasi), and Rebecca Cole (The Minders). Read More
Full disclosure: prior to watching British band Esben and the Witch play at Manhattan's Mercury Lounge last Saturday, I hadn't listened to their entire full-length album, Violet Cries. (It released on Matador in February.) This is shameful for 2 reasons: 1. Goth is in my blood; My black, brooding blood. When Esben first released the single "Marching Song" in late 2010 I listened to it for two days straight. This obsessive cycle was only broken by Sisters of Mercy's "Dominion." See? Darkness. Gothness.2. Read More