777 Valencia Street San Francisco, CA 94110 - Map
The Aislers Set

(((folkYEAH!))) Presents

The Aislers Set

Cold Beat, The Mantles

Sun, September 28, 2014

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pm

The Chapel

San Francisco, CA

$18 adv / $20 door

Limited Tickets at the Door

This event is all ages

The Aislers Set
The Aislers Set
The Aislers Set occupy an enviable place in the pop pantheon. Brimming with drunken romanticism, sharp pop sensibilities and timeless melodies, The Aislers reveled in the history of great POP, spiking their classicist 60s-tinged tunes with pure post-punk energy and originality of bands like the Fire Engines and The June Brides. Every song is a meticulously constructed sound world, where the arrangement and instrumentation sublimely, uncannily bring each tune to completeness.

The Aislers Set began in 1998 as a vehicle for the songs of Linton, who had most recently co-led San Francisco's legendary Henry's Dress and drummed in Go Sailor with her pal Rose Melberg. With Henry's Dress she had helped guide the band from it's noise/drone beginnings to the explosive mod/punk fusion that made them such a force to be reckoned with. With The Aislers Set the original goal was just to write, record and document.

The result was the first Aislers Set album, 1998's "Terrible Things Happen." Not content to merely (!) write some of the most sublime pop tunes this side of Ray Davies, Linton got busy in her garage studio and recorded and produced almost the whole record by herself. It's a remarkable feat, and a love for such producers as Phil Spector and Brian Wilson shines from each and every groove. This is no shameless 60's pastiche, though, with the echoes of classic pop past filtered through a totally 90's aesthetic. It's a beautiful, multi-layered record and a genuinely great achievement of home recording.

During the course of recording TTH, Linton was joined by some friends who became the full-band Aislers Set line-up: Alicia Vanden Heuvel on bass, Yoshi Nakamoto on drums, Wyatt Cusick on guitar and Jen Cohen on keyboards. It's this fantastic line-up that toured in 1999 and put together the second album, 2000's "The Last Match." Where "Terrible Things Happen’s synthesis of 60s mod-pop, 70s punk and 80s/90s indie flavors provided an end-of-the-century summation of where pop had been and where it was heading, "The Last Match" upped the ante even farther.

More ambitious in conception, "The Last Match" expanded the band's sound into more orchestral areas. While the songs are still driving and catchy as a fish hook, the arrangements are far more sophisticated. The instrumentation has been augmented by a Jen's vintage keyboards/organs and various horns, giving the tunes the timeless feel of classic groups like the early Bee Gees, The Zombies and The Millennium. Still preferring to record in the garage where they are allowed unlimited time for experimentation, the band had no problem crafting an amazing sounding album that could have sprung fully-formed from the hallowed studios of Gold Star. This is no murky lo-fi production, but a fully-rounded and rich-sounding recording with a warm, analog sound.

"The Last Match" was a roaring success, garnering fantastic reviews and spurring the band to tour the US, Japan and UK multiple times, with bands (and fans) including as Belle & Sebastian, Black Dice, The Gossip, Erase Errata, Comet Gain and Sleater-Kinney. The band even achieved the ultimate badge of indie honor, recording a session for the legendary John Peel. Even more, "The Last Match" established The Aislers Set as one of the most beloved indiepop bands of their generation. It was a must-listen album, one that fueled fond memories, sparked love affairs, set off spontaneous dance parties, and reminded us all of the power of songs and song-craft and POP. It's chiming guitars and indelible melodies were heard everywhere from London to Tokyo, from Glasgow to Malmo: The Aislers truly came into their own with "The Last Match."

2003 saw the release of the band's final album, "How I Learned To Write Backwards." At once more baroque and edgier than its predecessor, "How I Learned To Write Backwards" expertly wound together so many strands of pop history with such personality, atmosphere and style that there's never any doubt that you're listening to a band with vision. Far from being a "name the reference" game, The Aislers used the past as inspiration rather than a blueprint, so the echoes you might hear of, say, Phil Spector's Wall of Sound or Laura Nyro's soulful lyricism are so well-integrated into the Aislers' sound that they're more akin to the spice in the stew rather than the stock of the soup.

While the band had stopped playing and recording together by 2004 thanks to life commitments, their reputation has only grown and sporadic reunion shows and mini-tours have met with rapturous response. Now Slumberland and Suicide Squeeze are proud to join hands to re-release these fantastic, seminal albums in remastered form, and on vinyl LP again for the first time in over a decade. All three albums will feature new liner notes, updated art and sharp sound. Further, the band will play a select set of shows this Fall, and a new album of singles and rarities is being prepared for release in early 2015.
Cold Beat
Cold Beat
Following the release of COLD BEATS Worms/Year 5772 EP via bandleader HANNAH LEW’s (GRASS WIDOW) Crime on the Moon imprint, Over Me is the Bay Area act’s debut album. Propulsive and taut performances from guitarist KYLE KING and drummer BIANCA SPARTA (ERASE ERRATA) bely Lew’s glassy vocal melodies. A cathartic album, Lew sourced difficult personal experiences to create an immersive lyrical world sometimes fraught with paranoia, anxiety and impending doom, and also an exploration of hope and imagination—themes felt ever more acutely by a native San Franciscan artist in the midst of tech boom cataclysm once again. Over Me was recorded by PHIL MANLEY at Lucky Cat Studios in San Francisco, and mixed and mastered by MIKEY YOUNG in Australia. As a Crime on the Moon release, a percentage of sales benefit Charity: Water, an organization committed to eliminating privation in developing nations.
A meditation on the duality of identity, “Mirror” rides tear-drop guitar leads into a buoyant chorus, then cascades mightily towards an exalted outro. It is the first of three album tracks to receive music videos created by Lew. Elsewhere, the menacing “UV” couples fetishistic imagery with instrumental vigor, while the dystopian subject matter in “Out of Time” finds Lew’s vocals entwined in the sky, on a swift ascent to space with only glistening notes in their wake. Seething with circuitous anxieties, even teetering at times towards terror, Over Me ultimately marvels in the face of staggering unknowns.
The Mantles
The Mantles
What makes the Mantles the Mantles? Maybe it’s the idiosyncratic motion and energy of Michael Olivares’ vocals, the way they alternately stroll and hop assuredly over the music. Or maybe it’s the band’s sound itself, familiar and classic yet increasingly distinctive, and growing-with acoustic texture; keyboard hooks and licks; and resonant and representative drumbeats-to its deepest, warmest, fullest, and most colorful on their third album, All Odds End (out October 16th on Slumberland Records), a record that is quintessentially Mantles from the sheer sonic splendor and elation-and biting words-of the album-opening “Island” on through to the final harmony of “Stay.”

The album exits with “Stay,” so you can loop right back and listen to it all over again, and live for a bit within songs that capture those heightened moments when you (and Olivares’ lyrical portraiture often favors a perceptive “you” over a needy. greedy “I”) are at the threshold of change. It’s right there in the snapshot-vivid lyrics of “Doorframe”: “Ooh nothing like standing in a doorframe all day.” While it’s tempting to see these transitional vignettes-marked by characters who are simultaneously coming and going-as reflective of day-to-day tumult in contemporary Bay Area, Olivares brushes off the idea: “We would have written the same songs even if we weren’t here.”

Still, the theme even extends to the making of All Odds End. The band reunited with Jason Quever, song-smith of Papercuts, and master of vintage audio production who recorded The Mantles’ much loved early single, “Don’t Lie”. Quever had all his boxes packed for a move to L.A. while recording and mixing the album, with his equipment his only belongings out of storage. The situation meant an already attentive, sound-romancing producer had an even more heightened focus on the song’s ingredients, and appreciation of how they form a greater whole. It spills right off of the layered “Island,” which grows as it goes along, motored and punctuated by the playfully assured interplay between Olivares’s vocals and Virginia Weatherby’s steadily propulsive, detailed (yes, that is a Vibraslap) drumming. It’s apparent in the stark, bracing “Lately,” where acoustic guitar has the sharp-to-blind beauty of morning sunlight.

For this album Olivares, Weatherby, and lead guitarist Justin Loney were joined by Matt Bullimore on bass, a New Zealand native and member of Oakland’s Legs, and Carly Putnam on keyboard. These two new members energize the band into exploring territory that ranges from the staccato bursts and messy wisdom of “Police My Love” (which draws from a crazy variety of lyrical inspirations), to the country lilt of “Undelivered,” to the casually anthemic SF-to-LA tilt of “Best Sides.”People move, bands fall apart, cities change, but the Mantles abide and grow stronger, embodying their many-faceted name-planetary core-deep; incandescent; enveloping-a bit more with each new day, year, song and album. The Mantles are more and more the Mantles, and listening with dedication is like getting gifts. All Odds End, but the group continues to bloom.

Michael Olivares: Guitar and Vox
Virginia Weatherby: Drums
Justin Loney: Lead Guitar
Carly Putnam: Keys
Matt Bullimore: Bass
Venue Information:
The Chapel
777 Valencia Street
San Francisco, CA, 94110
http://www.thechapelsf.com