East Los Angeles is about to pop off hard this weekend with the return of Echo Park Rising! The three-day neighborhood festival will take place August 17- 20th throughout Echo Park and trust, it’s not to be missed. And did we mention it’s FREE!
As we’ve done the past few years, we’ve selected our top recommendations for must-see acts at Echo Park Rising! Each act below has been featured on Grimy Goods. Read excerpts from past Grimy Goods coverage to find out why these bands grabbed our attention in the first place! And be sure to stream our Echo Park Rising playlist which features music from all 13 must-see acts!
Lauren Ruth Ward
Now her music is spreading through LA like wildfire. She only moved to the west coast from her hometown of Baltimore two years ago, but has already played all the underground venue staples across the city. She has been promoting her eponymous EP for the past few months, demonstrating to all Angelenos that she and her wonderfully gritty voice are here to stay.
Comprised and led by couple María and Josh Conway, The Marías have no qualms about making music that is a sultry, midnight rendezvous of their many tastes, which include jazz, funk, psychedelia, and lounge. With only one song out but their debut EP titled Superclean Vol. I staged for release in the fall, the only real morsel one can get of the band right now is from the members themselves or those who’ve caught them live.
After hearing Twin Temple’s soulfully wicked single “Girl Trouble” and catching the stunning duo live at the Bootleg Theater, we were kind of enamored by the band. That, and we’re sure they put their sultry spell on us. The married couple made up of Alexandra and Zachary James are a striking pair, and we’re not just talking about how easy on the eyes they are. With a soulful vocal prowess, Alexandra charms you with her powerful croons, while Zach keeps laying down the witch’s brew with his slick guitar skills and style.
After years of touring with a variety of other bands (Goldroom, The Moth and the Flame), LA-native Michael Goldman’s newest project NONA was inspired by the need to create something uncompromisingly true to himself. Employing a lush indie-rock tone complete with jangly surf guitars, Goldman’s rugged crooning bounces around melodically on his first single for the project, “Fathers Day.” Buoyant with its hooks but affectionately off-kilter enough in its melding of synths and grumbling riffs, the song marks a choicely unpolished rebirth for Goldman and his sound is all the better for it.
Los Angeles alt-rocker, Liv Slingerland has premiered her anthemic new single “Hold On To.” Self-described as “energetic, angsty, yet optimistic” — the new song has a catchy hook and sound reminiscent of the 90s. While the vibrant number begs for you to sing-along to its buoyant melodies, the lyrics “tell a story about searching for a safe place or person in the midst of feeling predominantly stressed, anxious, and lost.”
Joel Jerome is the reigning king of LA’s underground music scene. You have probably heard about him recently for his work producing for some of the city’s brightest up-and-comers, such as Cherry Glazerr, La Sera, and LA Witch, among others. In a little under a month, we can expect to hear Cosmic Bear Jamboree, a full length record from Jerome, named after his current backing band.
Alice Bag a staple in the Los Angeles punk scene celebrated her debut solo album record release show at The Echo. Recognized as a punk music legend, author, educator, feminist and all around positive inspiration, fans from all over came to experience her new tunes and live performance. It wasn’t just a concert, but a motivating performance with an inspiring message.
Wrought with emotion and a beautiful blistering of guitars and drums, the LA-based band have come together quite nicely. You may recall Leon and bandmate Nick Perez from their past project, Sad Robot — together, the two have rebirthed with Holy Wars and it sounds amazing.
Fans of the indie rock groups Ex Cops and Hymns, rejoice! Brian Harding, the man behind these bands will soon be lending his talents to a solo musical project. He has announced a full-length album due out next year under the name Blond Ambition and just released the new sun-drenched single “Shasta.” Originally from New York, Harding was greatly inspired by his new home of Los Angeles in writing the track.
Rudy De Anda
De Anda is part of a budding Los Angeles artist group called Qvole Collective (Chicano Batman, Cutty Flam, etc.) who represent and celebrate progressive Latino music. If you haven’t noticed, Latinos in underground and indie music has been totally on the rise the past few years with more and more Latino acts coming together to showcase music in non-mainstream genres. Rudy De Anda is at the helm of that epic rise.
It’s all about their stand-out track Mr. Bloom! Led by the vocal prowess of Soraya Sebghati’s bewitching croon, “Mr Bloom” wraps you in an anthemic blanket of sounds. From Sebghati’s classic vocals, heightened by the steady roar of Cris Arteaga’s drum bravado and the cryptic bass of Josh Arteaga, Night Talks rounds out a bold, yet inviting sound for “Mr. Bloom.” Not to mention, Jacob Butler’s ripping guitar solo gives the song a sharp edge to its 80s alt rock tone.
Los Angeles native, mini bear (aka Lauren Kop) is serving up yet another 80s synth pop gem titled “Clique.” The new single follows “Prophecy Girl,” mini bear’s previous song reveal, and is one of five delicious electro tracks heard on her forthcoming Mind Control EP. With a dark electronic flavor doused in analog synth and vibrant breakbeats, “Clique” sounds as though it came straight out of an underground English disco (circa 1983).
Frankie & The Witch Fingers
Closing up the night were LA garage band Frankie and the Witch Fingers. These guys are always a raucous treat. The band picked up the speed with their fast paced performance. Dylan Sizemore (vocals, guitar) is a powerhouse and is always exciting to watch with an acid light show illuminating the stage.