In anticipation of FYF Fest, we’ve compiled a list of the artists we can’t wait to see, either for the first time ... More
An Issue Guide
In anticipation of FYF Fest, we’ve compiled a list of the artists we can’t wait to see, either for the first time or again and again. FYF has been an LA favorite for years, shedding its venues for larger sites since its inception in 2004, when it was held over one day at the Echo and Echoplex in Echo Park. Moving to Chinatown’s dusty LA State Historic Park in 2009, FYF eventually spread over two days and, in recent years, transitioned to Exposition Park (which, for an idea of size, has hosted the Summer Olympic Games twice).
It’s clear that FYF has seen so much success by choosing its lineups with integrity—collecting the year’s best artists across genres, and supporting emerging talent alongside the established. We are so excited to see our favorite albums of 2015 and 2016 live, including (alphabetically) Beach House’s Depression Cherry, Blood Orange’s Freetown Sound, Chelsea Wolfe’s Abyss, Father John Misty’s I Love You, Honeybear, Julia Holter’s I Have You In My Wilderness, Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly, Tame Impala’s Currents, Vince Staples’ Summertime ’06 and Young Thug’s countless mixtapes.
Below is our Issue staff’s guide to the festival, including the above acts and more. FYF will be held on Saturday August 28 and Sunday August 29, 2016. Tickets and more information on the full lineup are available here.
With the release of two new albums in 2015, Depression Cherry and Thank Your Lucky Stars, Beach House will be showcasing new material this year. We’re excited for their always-atmospheric set, and to hear old favorites from their breakout records Teen Dream (2010) and Bloom (2012).
Devonte Hynes’ new album Freetown Sound is clamoring with messages of racial and civil rights, calling us to attention in the spirit of 2015 releases by Kendrick Lamar, D’Angelo and Kamasi Washington. Following 2011’s Coastal Grooves and 2013’s Cupid Deluxe, which reverberated with ’80s synth and Hynes’ lovely voice, Freetown Sound is more complex, both thematically and in its genre-hopping sound from funk to poetry to R&B.
Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires
67-year-old soul singer Charles Bradley was pulled from obscurity in 2011 when Daptone Records released his breakout debut No Time for Dreaming. This year the nicknamed “screaming eagle of soul” released a third album Changes with his band The Extraordinaires. No doubt one to see live.
With a tonal darkness that borders on infernal, Chelsea Wolfe’s music has been creeping from a cult following into the mainstream—her track “Feral Love” off 2013’s Pain Is Beauty was featured on Game of Thrones. Wolfe’s 2015 album, Abyss, takes a quote by designer Yohji Yamamoto as its talisman: “Perfection is ugly. Somewhere in the things humans make, I want to see scars, failure, disorder, distortion.” Read her Issue interview with journalist and Punk Elegies author Allen MacDonnell.
Father John Misty
This year’s I Love You, Honeybear follows Josh Tillman’s critically acclaimed 2012 debut as Father John Misty, Fear Fun. Between Fear Fun’s nihilistic LA storytelling and I Love You, Honeybear, Tillman fell in love and married. He comes to terms with this and his formerly raucous, reckless lifestyle through some of the most inventive love songs in memory. Also go for the dancing, strut and swagger of Tillman’s Father John Misty alter-ego.
Is the Is Are was the long-awaited follow up to DIIV’s 2012 debut Oshin, and it succeeded in taking their brand of guitar-driven psych-pop to the next level. The five-piece band formed by Zachary Cole Smith, formerly touring guitarist for Soft Black and Beach Fossils, is currently touring Is the Is Are, which released this past February.
Jamaican actress, singer and model Grace Jones has spent the last year revisiting her ’80s pop career, touring with the likes of Blood Orange, and we’re excited for a revival of her disco, funk and New Wave compilations. It’s a great opportunity to see the Grace Jones: Bond Girl, muse and incredible performer. If you’ve never heard of Jones, she is the inspiration for Kim Kardashian’s ‘internet breaking’ photograph in Paper Magazine this year taken by her once-lover, photographer John Paul Goude.
We’ve been waiting for the follow-up to Claire Elise Boucher’s amazing Visions (2012), and it came in the form of last year’s bubbly Art Angels. Her solo project Grimes is a pastiche of musical styles and influences with accompanying album art by Boucher, and her shows promise to be equally eclectic.
British electronic artists Hot Chip have released six albums since 2004, with their newest Why Make Sense? in 2015. During each live performance, the band reinvents their in-studio songs to create new, improvised versions and a singular, energy-driven crowd experience—it’s a good time every time.
Australian trio Jagwar Ma released their debut album Howlin in 2013 to critical acclaim, and are set to release their sophomore album Every Now & Then this October. While they’ve released two singles from the upcoming record, FYF should be an advance preview of their newest material and a great dance party regardless.
Julia Holter’s fourth album, Have You in My Wilderness, is a pronounced conversion from her academic roots to a more pop-accessible venture. Holter has been featured in the work of fellow musician and friend Ariel Pink and formed Nite Jewelia, a collaboration with musician Nite Jewel, who interviewed her for Issue last year.
The Memphis, Tennessee singer-songwriter released her sparse, beautiful debut Sprained Ankle last year.
Kendrick Lamar flipped the script with To Pimp a Butterfly, the follow-up to his acclaimed debut good kid, m.A.A.d city, shifting from mainstream rap success to a politically conscious fusion of jazz, funk, soul and poetry that reached right to the core of American racial tensions. Lamar is the best rapper around right now, and we’re excited to feel the energy of To Pimp a Butterfly live.
A constant FYF favorite, Mac DeMarco released two 2015 mini-albums following his hit 2014 release Salad Days: Another One and the instrumental summer-BBQ-themed Some Other Ones. We’ve seen Mac play many festivals past, and never tire of his shows.
Tame Impala’s long-awaited follow-up to 2012’s Lonerism, Currents (2015) is the poppiest, most accessible venture we’ve seen from frontman Kevin Parker. The Australian band’s live shows do justice to their incredible music, and we’re excited to see how Currents manifests live.
Tame Impala’s drummer, Julien Barbagallo, recently interviewed the band Motopony for Issue.
Ty Segall & The Muggers
Ty Segall’s prolific musical output most recently took form in II, the sophomore album from his band Fuzz. Emotional Mugger is the follow-up to 2014’s Manipulator and Segall’s tenth solo album, which he formally announced by sending a VHS to media outlets and releasing a cryptic short video explaining ‘emotional mugging.’ His new backing band The Muggers includes frequent collaborators Mikal Cronin, Kyle Thomas, Emmett Kelly, and Cory Hanson and Evan Burrows of the band Wand.
Vince Staples’ breakout debut album, Summertime ‘06 is raw with integrity, poised between his hood credo and sharp defiance of racism, inequality and its fallout on the streets. The album’s stripped-down flood of percussion and lyrical inventiveness highlight Staples’ clear vocals and cool-mannered restraint. The Long Beach native is Cutthroat Boyz rapper, Odd Future collaborator and has guest versed for Ghostface Killah, Earl Sweatshirt, Mac Miller and Common, but doesn’t really pledge allegiance to anybody. If you’ve missed his tour this year like we have, Staples will certainly be an FYF highlight.
We’ve missed Wolf Parade in the six years since 2010’s Expo 86, and of course their 2005 classic Apologies to the Queen Mary, reissued by Sub Pop this year. We’ve been following Spencer Krug’s side projects the last few years, including Sunset Rubdown, Swan Lake and Moonface, who just released My Best Human Face with Siinai. .
Extremely prolific Atlanta rapper Young Thug has released five mixtapes in the last two years: Barter 6, Slime Season, Slime Season 2, I’m Up and Slime Season 3. He has yet to release his debut album Hy!£UN35 (pron. Hi-Tunes), but his mixtape Jeffery (which will be released under the temporary pseudonym No, My Name Is Jeffery) is set to drop this Friday, August 26, just in time to hear it live at FYF.
Set in Heidelberg, Germany, Morris From America escapes the trappings of the coming-of-age story by situating the alienation of being 13 against ... More
Film by Chad Hartigan
Set in Heidelberg, Germany, Morris From America escapes the trappings of the coming-of-age story by situating the alienation of being 13 against that of living in a foreign country. Newcomer Markees Christmas stars as Morris who, as the title informs, is from America and the only black kid in school due to the career of his father (Craig Robinson), who is often absent but teaches Morris his love of hip hop. His mother, who is not around, is rarely mentioned. Instead, Morris’ tutor (Carla Juri of Wetlands) helps him to assimilate as Morris makes forays into hip hop and draws the attention of a girl his age who bullies him while stringing him along. Directed by Chad Hartigan, whose film This is Martin Bonner won critical acclaim in 2013, Morris From America is slowly touching, debuting Christmas as a charismatic lead.
Indignation is the directorial debut of industry heavyweight James Schamus, who wrote and produced classics from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon to The ... More
Film by James Schamus
Indignation is the directorial debut of industry heavyweight James Schamus, who wrote and produced classics from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon to The Ice Storm. Based on the novel by Philip Roth, Indignation begins amid the Korean War as Marcus, a Jewish boy from Newark played Logan Lerman, attends a Catholic Ohio college to skip the draft. In the spirit of the 1950s, the sterile facades of the film reveal little about the turmoil underneath. But Lerman is deft as Marcus, an atheist who confronts religious and moral authority, isolates himself from his fellow students and meets a lovely but unstable girl (Sarah Gadon). Repression becomes the seething foundation of the film as Marcus suffocates under the cultural norms of mid-century America, searching for redemption in his own sexual and intellectual freedom.
Viggo Mortensen leads Captain Fantastic as the father of six children raised iconoclastically, off-the-grid in northern Oregon. When their mother dies of ... More
Film by Matt Ross
Viggo Mortensen leads Captain Fantastic as the father of six children raised iconoclastically, off-the-grid in northern Oregon. When their mother dies of illness, the father and children, who range from seven to 18 years old, must leave this wooded idyll and their realm of intellectual ideals, self-sufficiency and independence from social norms. Contact with the outside world, though, makes Mortensen, his charmingly isolated children and their normalized nuclear family vulnerable and uncomfortable. It’s through this lens that Captain Fantastic grapples with the paradigm of modern life versus that of the purist, and if or how a middle ground can exist. The film is directed by Matt Ross, an actor known for roles in Silicon Valley, American Horror Story, American Psycho and Aviator, and received the Un Certain Regard Directing Prize at Cannes 2016.
George Dureau, The Photographs collects the photography of the influential yet often neglected New Orleans artist George Dureau, best known for his ... More
Book by Philip Gefter
George Dureau, The Photographs collects the photography of the influential yet often neglected New Orleans artist George Dureau, best known for his charcoal sketches and black and white portraits featuring male athletes, dwarfs and amputees. Dureau originally began photographing his lovers as research for his lush figural paintings, and only later began to take the medium seriously in its own right. Working out of his studio in the French Quarter or out in the city’s streets, Dureau captured stark, tender portraits with a tangible connection between photographer and subject. These subjects frequently became a part of his ‘extended family’ and were photographed over many occasions. Dureau is often compared with his younger contemporary Robert Mapplethorpe for his erotic male nudes, yet never received such widespread recognition, even as his work predated Mapplethorpe’s. With an essay by author and former New York Times writer Philip Gefter, George Dureau, The Photographs reiterates Dureau’s talent and legacy through one of the first complete collections of his groundbreaking imagery.
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Twenty years after his breakout film Welcome to the Dollhouse, writer-director Todd Solondz revisits its protagonist, the middle-school geek Dawn Wiener (nickname ... More
Film by Todd Solondz
Twenty years after his breakout film Welcome to the Dollhouse, writer-director Todd Solondz revisits its protagonist, the middle-school geek Dawn Wiener (nickname Wiener Dog). She is now a lonely vet technician played by Greta Gerwig and one protagonist in a series of piercing vignettes connected by the shifting ownership of a dachshund.
Wiener Dog progresses through three other humans from various walks of life: a young boy and his frenzied mother (Julie Delpy); a tired film professor (Danny DeVito) wrangling his Hollywood manager; and a grandmother (Ellen Burstyn) visited by her drug-addled granddaughter (Zosia Mamet). Expertly helmed by Carol cinematographer Edward Lachman, the film aims straight for the grittier aspects of human nature. Each story finds the dachshund sadly overshadowed as its owners grapple with mortality and regret, all underpinned by Solondz’ dark, absurd humor.
Told Slant is the project of Brooklyn-based Felix Walworth, a lyricist, producer and founder of The Epoch arts collective. Walworth returns with ... More
Album “Going By”
Told Slant is the project of Brooklyn-based Felix Walworth, a lyricist, producer and founder of The Epoch arts collective. Walworth returns with his ambling, melancholy songwriting on Going By, the follow-up to his 2012 self-released debut, Still Water. With quavering falsetto and banjo twanging over faraway guitars, there is a requisite comparison to Modest Mouse, yet Walworth incorporates this sound into part of something updated and fresh. Lyrically, Told Slant takes on anxiety and isolation in simple phrasings like, “I want to be a good sky on a bad day” and “I don’t know how to talk to you without a can in my hands.” The album is largely written and recorded as a solo project, but Told Slant’s raw and dynamic live shows feature fellow Epoch members Emily Sprague of Florist, Oliver Kalb of Bellows and Gabrielle Smith of Eskimeaux. Also featured on Going By are Cleo Tucker & Harmony Tividad of Girlpool.
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From first-time Venezuelan director Lorenzo Vigas, Desde Allà (or From Afar) garnered the top prize of Golden Lion at the 2015 Venice ... More
Film by Lorenzo Vigas
From first-time Venezuelan director Lorenzo Vigas, Desde Allà (or From Afar) garnered the top prize of Golden Lion at the 2015 Venice Film Festival. The film is co-written by Vigas and Mexican novelist Guillermo Arriaga, whose past work with Oscar-winning director Alejandro González Iñárritu includes screenplays Amores Perros (2000) and 21 Grams (2003). Chilean actor Alfredo Castro plays an introverted 50-year-old man who cruises the poor, gritty neighborhoods of Caracas watching boys from afar and later paying for their company. He hones in on the 17-year-old gang leader Elder, played by newcomer Luis Silva, who is aggressive, volatile and becomes more and more attracted to the older man’s quiet persistence.
Detached and observational in style, From Afar was shot by Sergio Armstrong, who often works with Chilean director Pablo Larrain (No, The Club). The camera’s understatement and neutral palette work to heighten the slow build of emotion between the two men, capturing even minute body language with tight closeups against the bustle and grit of Caracas.
American Apparel takes pride in the philosophy “Made in the USA.” With the launch of the new initiative “Made In,” the company ... More
Contest by American Apparel
American Apparel takes pride in the philosophy “Made in the USA.” With the launch of the new initiative “Made In,” the company will support small US manufacturing projects by giving them the chance to be carried in the 200+ American Apparel stores worldwide.
The contest focuses on accessories: leather goods, canvas goods, footwear, jewelry, paper goods, fragrances, small home furnishings and more. To enter, submit a new or existing video up to 60 seconds in length that displays your “Made in the USA” product and company. Submissions will be selected based on voting as well as advisors on the expert panel, which includes us at Issue Magazine.