The iconic L.A. ‘X’ punk band – The Unheard Music: Silver Edition [short film]

The X Band

‘X’ the band

“…a vivid collage of sound, image and style […] that match the X band’s music: fast, dense, provocative, uncompromising.” – Richard Harrington, Washington Post

The iconic L.A. band X changed the face of punk music with their vibrant, original style. We see the band at its peak in this legendary film, which took five years to make. As vital today as the day it was released twenty-five years ago, X: THE UNHEARD MUSIC, preserved by the Sundance Collection as a “seminal independent film,” provides an indelible record of underground America in the Age of Reagan. This innovative and unconventional film puts us inside the world of X using a striking, visionary style reflecting the uncompromising passion and raw energy of their music. Includes seventeen X classics from their critically hailed first four albums: “Los Angeles,” “Wild Gift,” “Under the Big Black Sun” and “More Fun in the New World.”

X: The Unheard Music takes long, detailed, and often funny look at the LA music scene of the late 70s and 80s and focuses on the group X that critics had singled out as the leader of the underground pack. The Unheard Music is a documentary that combines live footage of the band and interviews with the four members (as well as their friends and families) with surreal music videos and montages of newsreel footage and vintage television commercials which help to illustrate X’s uphill struggle against the music industry. Their story rings true even today. Bonus interviews and more.

Legendary punk band X play Under The Big Black Sun at the Paradise Nightclub, Boston MA on May 26, 2009.  Watch video below:

X (the band) – Under the Big Black Sun

X LosAngeles (1980) FULL ALBUM

X: The Unheard Music [Trailer]

Cast & Crew

GENRES

Ryan Adams & The Cardinals – Blue Sky Blues

Ryan Adams is one of the most underrated, prolific, talented, and versatile musical artists that has come along in the last 20 years. He is typically given the alt-country label but he has dabbled in many different genres over the years from country, to rock, to folk, and even heavy metal.  Unfortunately, he retired from recording and left NYC for Los Angeles. He currently lives in fancy West Hollywood.  Ryan is now a music producer and has his own recording studio. If you haven’t heard his music before I urge you to take a listen. It will be well worth the effort.

Jim James of The Morning Jacket at The Fonda Theatre in L.A.: Concert Review

jimJames_MMJ_may112013

Spiritual ruminations meet perfected jam sessions during the My Morning Jacket frontman’s two-hour set, May 11.

Jim James @ The Fonda Theater – Concert Review

The My Morning Jacket frontman goes track-by-track through his solo effort before switching gears to an encore that included a caped cameo by Bright Eyes’ Conor Oberst.

Jim James‘ hair is gloriously alive. During solos where the My Morning Jacket frontman hunches over his guitar, the enormous mane overshadows everything else, giving the impression that strands of hair are furiously strumming the instrument.

The opening of James’ set Saturday at the Fonda Theatre in Los Angeles, however, began in a more composed manner. The multi-instrumentalist and singer, attired in a suit and tie, led the evening with songs exclusively from his ambitiously titled solo album, Regions of Light and Sound of God, released Feb. 5.

Beginning with “State of the Art (A.E.I.O.U),” the bass-grooving album opener, James went track-by-track through Regions. The dense solo album’s spiritual inclinations were previously stated by the singer to be inspired by the “hazy dream” of a robot and 1929 graphic novel God’s Man. And the reflective interludes, chants and saxaphone solos  initially were a stark contrast to the Southern alt-rock sensibilities of My Morning Jacket.

“I use my state-of-the-art technology/Now don’t you forget it: It ain’t using me,” he crooned.

“Know Til Now,” the first single released from the album, featured a sound akin to material that producer Brian Burton (Danger Mouse) could’ve conjured for James Mercer‘s Broken Bells project or Beck‘s Modern Guilt. “Dear One,” a standout track on Regions, was punctuated by two precisely executed drum solos that drew cheers from the standing crowd at the packed venue.

Like the album, the songs transitioned seamlessly into one another, and James didn’t see the need to break up mood by adding any topical comments. His first words were a cryptic introduction to the fourth song, the sparse “A New Life.”

At times, the expanded live versions of the Region tracks took stabs at grand gestures. The bleak solos of Pink Floyd’s “Shine on You Crazy Diamond” and the manic tone of Radiohead’s “The National Anthem” appeared to be influencers.

Jim James @ The Fonda Theater

Jim James @ The Fonda Theater

Throughout the set, James ambled about the stage in a playful mood. He snatched what looked like a bronze ornamental bear prop and playfully twirled around before returning it to its proper place. And, periodically, he would freeze in position, stare out at the audience and smile as if there were some joke that the crowd was missing.

At the conclusion of album closer “God’s Love to Deliver,” James only briefly stepped away from the stage before starting the encore with acoustic tracks. His rendition of the latter-day My Morning Jacket song “Wonderful (The Way I Feel)” was helped by stripping the string accompaniment that made the track sound rom-com syrupy on the album.

From there, the evening finally switched gears to head-nodding rock jams when James broke out material from his supergroup side project, Monsters of Folk.

During “Dear God,” the most notable track from the self-titled album, the hirsute frontman was joined by fellow Monster of Folk, Conor Oberst, for a cameo verse. The Bright Eyes singer appeared on stage wrapped in black cape and added his voice to a few lines before unfurling the cape with arms outstretched for the remainder of the track. At the end of the song, he covered his head and vanished offstage.

The set ended with three more Monsters of Folk tracks — “His Masters Voice,” “The Right Place” and “Losin Yo Head” — before ending with a rousing song from his contribution to New Multitudes, a Woody Guthrie tribute album, called “Changing World.”

Then, James inexplicably snatched the ornamental bear once again and appeared as if he were going to toss it into the audience. He seemed to offer it a prayer before setting it aside and leaving the stage for good.

Set List: 

State of the Art (A.E.I.O.U)
Know Til Now
Dear One
A New Life
Exploding
Of the Mother Again
Actress
All Is Forgiven
God’s Love to Deliver

Encore:

Wonderful (The Way I Feel)
Dear God (with Conor Oberst)
His Master’s Voice
The Right Place
Losin Yo Head
Changing World