Tag: Trash Talk

Los Angeles-born and-based singer/songwriter, guitarist, poet, essayist, visual artist, and Dum Dum Records founder and label head Taleen Kali (she/they) has made a career out of crafting romantic punk songs with a cosmic sound that features elements of shoegaze, psychedelia, and grunge that’s simultaneously dreamy and defiant. Kali has also been influenced by melodies and imagery from her Armenian heritage and her parents’ birthplaces of Lebanon and Ethiopia, managing to fuse her cultural heritage and identity with the sounds of the modern countercultures she grew up embracing and eventually exploring as a musician.

Her poetry, essays and visual art have appeared in digital and internationally recognized publications including The OnionSpin MagazineRazorcakeLos Angeleno, and The Bushwick Review.

Kali’s music career started in earnest with a stint in Los Angeles-based band TÜLIPS. After TÜLIPS closed up shop in 2016, she stepped out into the limelight as a solo artist, eventually touring across the US with Ex Hex, Alice Bag and Seth Bogart

Her solo debut, 2018’s Kristin Kontrol-produced Soul Songs EP was recorded at Hollywood-based Sunset Sound Studios and was mixed by Machine’s Brad Laner. The EP, which found Kali’s riot grrl ethos maturing into a polished multifaceted punk sound with elements of noise pop and New Wave, was released to praise from BUST Magazine and Stereogum, who likened her sound to a contemporary BlondieSoul Songs was also included in Pitchfork‘s Guide to Summer Albums and LA Weekly‘s Best Indie Punk Albums. 

Kali and her backing band followed up with an unplugged version of the EP and covers of The Supremes‘ “Baby Love” and Garbage‘s “#1 Crush.” She also recorded a two-song pandemic project called Changing with her TÜLIPS-era producer Greg Katz.

Taleen Kali’s Jeff Schroeder and Josiah Mazzaschi-co-produced full-length debut Flower of Life is slated for a March 3, 2023 release through Kali’s Dum Dum Records. Sonically, the album reportedly sees the rising Los Angeles further cementing her fuzzy and noisy take on psych punk paired with vocals that run the range of femme punk and shoegaze siren. 

Earlier this year, I wrote about album title track “Flower of Life,” a grungy psych punk ripper centered around fuzzy power chords, thunderous drumming, soaring organ chords and Kali’s sneering delivery paired with mosh pit friendly hooks and choruses that sonically was a bit of a synthesis of My Bloody Valentine and riot grrl punk. “‘Flower of Life’ was a spiritual concept I held onto for a long time before writing this song,” Kali explains in press notes. “The flower is a fractal, a cycle, ever blooming, ever decaying. 

“Trash Talk” Flower of Life‘s latest single is a jangling Brit Pop-inspired anthem centered around a chugging motorik-like groove, fuzzy power chords, Kali’s unerring knack for rousingly anthemic hooks and a sneering “fuck off” attitude towards haters, trolls and toxic bullshit that almost anyone can relate to.

“”Trash Talk” is a track that speaks out against haters, trolls, and toxic bullshit in the hope that it gives a voice to anybody who’s been silenced or worn down,” Kali explains. “I wanted to write a song that embodies my favorite jangly Brit-pop songs and the energy of “do no harm, but take no shit.””

New Video: The Chavez Ravine Releases a Darkly Ironic Visual for “Bermuda Triangle”

Comprised of Manny Nieto (vocals, guitar), Phil Guerrero (drums) and Mando Lopez (bass), the indie rock trio The Chavez Ravine may arguably be as Los Angeles as it can get: the trio of grizzled local scene veterans features members, who have played in a number of renowned bands including Distortion Felix, FEAR, The Breeders, and Morrissey‘s backing band — and the band’s name is derived from the name of the Los Angeles that was appropriated by the city in 1958 to make room for Dodger Stadium. “I think our name The Chavez Ravine does mean something, considering we are all SoCal Latinos making music that’s not metal, as a DJ or playing hip-hop,” Nieto says. “Our DNA is more Devo vs. Wipers.” Additionally, Nieto is known for his work at Suplex Audio, where he has produced albums by HEALTH, Trash Talk, The Breeders, Darker My Love, Los Lobos and others. 

The Los Angeles-based trio recently took part in Dangerbird Records‘ MICRODOSE monthly single release and live event series, which celebrates new music from the city’s Eastside neighborhood — and beyond.  And their contribution is the 90s grunge rock-inspired “Bermuda Triangle,” a muscular and insistent track centered by fuzzy power chords, a steady backbeat, down-tuned bass and a hook that subtly recalls Social Distortion (at least to my ears). 

The recently released video stars Richard “Cully” Roberts as a distraught lover, who desperately attempts to bring his dead girlfriend, Chloe Diaz with his car. Once brought back to life, Roberts takes Diaz out to dance at a quiet bar, where the members of The Chavez Ravine are playing the song. While heading to the car, a distracted Roberts gets hit by a car and dies; however, instead of attempting to bring her lover back to life, she gleefully kills him. Darkly ironic, indeed. 

New Video: The 80s Crime TV Show-Inspired Visuals for Swimsuit Issue’s “Look Now”

Fronted by founding duo New York-born, Los Angeles, CA-based duo Miles Garber, who’s best known prominent male model and Dave Gagliardi, who’s best known as a member of renowned punk act Trash Talk, Swimsuit Issue can trace their origins to when the duo met outside of an art show on the Bowery back in 2014. And instead of quickly rushing to put out material, the duo, along with a rotating cast of collaborators spent the next two years honing and refining their sound with the end result being their anthemic, 120 Minutes-era MTV meets contemporary indie rock- like debut single “Look Now,” complete with jangling and fuzzy power chords, a propulsive backbeat paired with Garber’s crooning vocals, in a song that manages to balance earnest emotionality with a deliberate attention to craft.

The band’s self-directed video draws from 80s cop movies, crime documentaries and crime TV shows — and a little bit of Trading Places as the video features Dave Gagliardi as a blatantly corrupt and thieving inside trader, who’s investigated and then arrested by his bandmate Miles Garber. Filmed in a series of flashbacks, the video features a number of talking heads, along with the video’s villain and protagonist singing along to various points of the song in a way that reminds of one of Magnolia’s many surreal turns. Interestingly, the video manages to emphasize the song’s aesthetic and vibe, with each miserable character seeming to be yearning for something more than what they have in front of them.

Comprised of New York-born, Los Angeles, CA-based duo Miles Garber, who’s best known prominent male model and Dave Gagliardi, who’s best known as a member of renowned punk act Trash Talk, Swimsuit Issue can trace their origins to when the duo met outside of an art show on the Bowery back in 2014. And instead of quickly rushing to put out material, the duo spent the next two years honing and refining their sound with the end result being their anthemic, 120 Minutes-era MTV meets contemporary indie rock- like debut single “Look Now,” complete with jangling and fuzzy power chords, a propulsive backbeat paired with Garber’s crooning vocals, in a song that manages to balance earnest emotionality with a deliberate attention to craft.

 

 

New Video: The 120 Minutes-era Sounds and Visuals of Neaux’s “LUV”

With the release of their full-length debut, the indie rock duo Neaux, comprised of Versa Emerge’s Sierra Kay and Trash Talk’s Nick Fit received attention across the blogosphere for a sound that the duo says is influenced by the likes of Sebadoh, Mudhoney and Sonic Youth — while nodding at the likes of Slowdive and Swirlies. Building on a growing profile, the duo’s sophomore effort Chain Up The Sun was released earlier this year, and as you’ll hear on album single “LUV,” the duo further cements their reputation for crafting a sound that to my ears reminds me quite a bit of 120 Minutes-era MTV, complete with fuzzy power chords, rousingly anthemic hooks, driving rhythms and gorgeous pop belter vocals giving an otherwise aggressive bit of shoegaze it’s vulnerable and aching heart. And fittingly enough, the recently released visuals for the single also manage to nod heavily at 120 Minutes-era MTV, as it features the duo goofing off and lounging about  while superimposed with psychedelic imagery.