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TVOTR at the Hollywood Bowl

Last Friday may have been the first day of autumn, but the last day of summer was a couple of days later on Sunday. That’s when TV on The Radio and Arctic Monkeys co-headlined a killer show at the Hollywood Bowl. The historic venue was built on classical and jazz, and typically only books rock shows on special occasions. People still talk about The Beatles, Stones, and Doors gigs there back in the ’60s. Nowadays it’s Radiohead and Pavement, so it was a big deal when a gang of mostly younger bands took the stage to close out the season.

Smith Westerns, Warpaint, and Panda Bear/Sonic Boom at the Hollywood Bowl

Smith Westerns kicked off the show at the super early hour of six. A tough slot since most fans were probably picking up picnic food at Trader Joe’s on the way to the venue, but the Chicago band powered through a 20-minute sampler of their short-but-solid catalog of proto-glam lo-fi. Pretty cool, but I need to see them at a smaller venue for a real take. Warpaint was next and jammed from the moment the Batcave-like stage spun them to face the crowd until it spun them back. The hometown band was great in it’s trademark folk-meets-goth manner with heavy drums that are as spectacular as the Siouxsie-esque vocals. (I hope the drummer gets a little extra love on the next release…) I caught some of Panda Bear’s set at FYF last year, and this set was way, way better. Two guys behind a table is at least twice as interesting than one to watch, but what if the extra guy is Sonic Boom from Spacemen 3? It was like a passing of the torch from one indietronica/stoner music god from the past to the present. The gorgeous sunset, trippy lights, and post-Beach Boys, dub-infused, analog-tronica made every stoners’ night.

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