Friday, May 30, 2008

Return of the Bay

When I first moved to San Francisco four years ago, and attempted to integrate into the music scene, I was not all that impressed with what I saw. There was a good band here or there, but most of what was getting attention just seemed derivative of the latest trend. Furthermore, Bay Area bands just weren't getting attention from the national indie media. But something interesting has happened over the past few years, building up and finally coming to a head in 2008. A number of bands have come up from the Bay, found audiences around the country, while having praise heaped on them from the likes of Pitchfork and Stereogum.

Listening to a new Scenecast compiled by Cokemachineglow and The Bay Bridged, I was struck by just how good and exciting the music in the Bay Area has gotten. The Bay Bridged also recently pointed out that a number of Bay Area bands have been showcased by Daytrotter sessions. Among those receiving the well-deserved national attention - the Dodos, Port O'Brien and the Morning Benders.

I saw the Morning Benders play an in-store at Virgin a couple weeks back, and I kind of like to think of them as our answer to Vampire Weekend. Like Vampire Weekend on the East Coast, the Morning Benders emerged from a prestigious California university, armed with catchy pop tunes that generated blog buzz and a quick label deal. Their is also something decidedly West Coast about their sound.

It is a very exciting time to be involved in music in the Bay Area - I just hope we haven't reached our peak yet.
MP3 - "Crosseyed" - The Morning Benders
MP3 - "I Woke Up Today" - Port O'Brien
[There are 3 different versions of this song. This is the most recent.]

1 comment:

Adrian said...

I saw that Scenecast and was pretty surprised--that's not the fourteen bands I would have picked at all to represent the bay area.

But to come in a full circle, I believe I first heard Port O'Brien (that same song, an earlier version) when you posted about them a year and change ago over on the old New & Used Records music/ pop culture blog thing.