Cosmic Angel

MYKKI. BLANCO. That’s all an entire page of my notebook says. Blanco repeated her name a lot when she played Comet Ping Pong in March, like a mantra. And now her new EP “Betty Rubble: The Initiation” is out, its NSFW cover radiating her sexy, transgressive glory. Blanco’s been making a name since her 2012 […]

Beyond Just Pushing Buttons

Daft Punk helped lead the charge for the EDM (electronic dance music) genre. Being one with the machines is kind of the point of being an EDM DJ/producer. It’s a quest that begat Girl Talk and Skrillex. But is that making music? Isn’t being a DJ or producer just pushing buttons? Daft Punk’s new album,“Random […]

Sheila E.’s Glamorous Career

Sheila E. combined glamour and drumsticks decades before Meg White. If the name Sheila E. is new to you, great! You’ve got a hot new favorite song to YouTube ahead of her show at the Howard Theatre on Thursday. If you remember her from back in the day, you’ll be psyched for this rare solo […]

Picking Up History

There’s a little old lady partial to cardigans who has earned a place in rock history. Her stuff goes for hundreds of dollars on eBay. She retired two weeks ago, and Los Lobos played her goodbye party at work. Abigail Ybarra, “The Queen of Tone,” started hand-winding guitar pickups for Fender in 1958. Fender figures […]

Guitar Hero

“How Soon is Now?” The Smiths cryptically wondered on their self-titled 1984 debut. I can name that tune in one shimmering, echo-pedaled guitar note. So when ex-Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr performed the song last week on “Late Night With Jimmy Fallon” in support of his first solo disc, “The Messenger,” I witnessed both greatness and […]

Kill Yr. Idols

Sonic Youth was born in 1981, three years after I was. We did not grow up together, however: While I was learning to walk and read, they were recording album after album of drone-and-pedal-effects-laden insanity that changed that course of indie music. I discovered them as a teen with 1992’s “Goo.” One song by Kim […]

Memorial Music

My partner, Jaime, lost her dad on Holy Thursday. Her family lives in Los Angeles, and I’m writing this riding down the Pacific Coast Highway so we can put his ashes in the ocean at the beach they’d camp at when she was little. There’s been a lot of music around us this week. A […]

Let the Record Show

Saturday is Record Store Day, that hallowed annual event when record stores say, “Hey! Remember us?” Vinylheads line up at the coolest stores (Jack White’s Third Man Records is popping up a poolside shop in Palm Springs, Calif.) for special releases. Not a frothing new-vinyl purist? That’s fine. If you’re cheap like me, browsing the […]

Wobble-dy Whaaat?

California rapper Big Sean broke huge after signing to Kanye West’s G.O.O.D. label for his 2011 debut, “Finally Famous.” That disc’s Nicki Minaj-assisted club hit, “Dance (A$$),” brought us Sean’s most memorably weird mutterance to date on one of his favorite topics — butts: “Wobble-dy wobble-dy wa/ Wobble, wobble.” Ahead of Big Sean’s Saturday show, we […]

It’s Complicated

Lil Wayne lives! For a while, we were worried. When the sizzurp-loving rapper was hospitalized two Fridays ago following seizures, fans — myself included — were on Twitter vigil. As I followed the drama, my (male) DJ friend, who used to spin at the lesbian club Phase 1, asked with exasperation, “Why do you guys […]