Kero Kero Bonito – Tickets – The Casbah – San Diego – San Diego, CA – April 15th, 2019

Kero Kero Bonito

Casbah presents

Kero Kero Bonito

Jaakko Eino Kalevi

Mon, April 15, 2019

Doors: 8:30 pm / Show: 9:00 pm

The Casbah - San Diego

San Diego, CA

$20.00

Sold Out

This event is 21 and over

Kero Kero Bonito
Kero Kero Bonito
KERO KERO BONITO
(Sarah Midori Perry, Gus Lobban, Jamie Bulled)
The sophomore full-length from Kero Kero Bonito, Time ‘n’ Place is an album ineffably shaped
by the subconscious. Lead singer and chief lyricist Sarah Bonito (who was raised in the suburbs
on the Japanese island Hokkaido) found herself rattled in recent years by recurring images in
her dreams: a water park from when she was little, a hallway in her primary school. After those
dreams started , she also received an unexpected photo from her brother: a picture of a plot of
bare land that once held her childhood home, the house now demolished. (“I felt like I’d lost
something, even though I didn’t know I needed it,” she says.) And in another heartbreak for
Sarah, 2017 saw the death of her beloved childhood pet, a boy budgie named Nana whom she
received soon after moving to the UK at age 13.
At the same time, Sarah’s fellow KKB members experienced some life-changing upheaval,
including the loss of several close family members. So when the London trio began writing
again, they felt compelled to diverge from the carefree sensibilities of their early work (a form of
kitsch electro-pop that jumbled up lo-fi dance music with bilingual lyrics, British TV references,
and stories about animals). Resuming a very teenage and visceral approach to making music,
KKB effectively morphed into a band, with Sarah on vocals, Jamie on bass, Gus on drums, and
their friend James Rowland on guitar. Their debut for Polyvinyl, Time ‘n’ Place is a document of
that band finding its voice, a coming-of-age story told in warped guitar solos, shining melodies,
unnervingly tender lyrics about yogurt and seafoam and feral parakeets.
Though much of Time ‘n’ Place was self-produced in Gus’s bedroom in the London suburb of
Bromley, it was also partly recorded by Jimmy Robertson (Arctic Monkeys, Fuck Buttons) and
Stereolab drummer Andy Ramsay (King Krule, Wire) at Ramsay’s Press Play Studio in South
London. Along with Rowland, the album features contributions from noise/electronic musician
Jennifer Walton, a string arrangement by composer Calum Bowen (aka bo en), and a three-part
choir made up of Cecile Believe, Oscar Scheller, and Crying’s z (aka Elaiza Santos). Built on the
same volatile energy that’s made KKB’s live shows famously mosh-heavy, Time ‘n’ Place
collages those elements together in a sound that’s both chaotic as punk and symphonic as ’60s
pop.
For KKB the urgency of Time ‘n’ Place was imperative—they needed to process their pain and
confusion in frantic, kinetic movements, and bashing away on drums and guitars felt more fitting
than assembling songs on a laptop. It’s also much more true to their upbringing as musicians,
back when Gus and Jamie were growing up in the South London suburbs and played in garage
bands together all during their school days. With the added vision and otherworldly voice of
Sarah—who spent her adolescence in the UK town of Kenilworth, and met Gus and Jamie on a
web forum five years ago—the classically dissident music of their indie-rock forebears takes on
weirder and more wonderful textures and colors, giving way to something dreamy and
transcendent but not without its nightmare moments.
While loss of innocence is an overriding theme on Time ‘n’ Place , the album is weighted with
existential reflections of all kinds. “Make Believe” is partly about lucid dreaming, but it’s also
about self-inflicted anxiety, and the danger in slipping into fantasy as a way to escape fear.
“Time Today” is about waking up early and feeling determined to make the most of the day, and
the sad/sweet naïveté of that optimism in the face of self-sabotage. “Only Acting” follows a
social-media-age identity crisis, the song itself coming unhinged as its narrator spins out of
control. And on “Dear Future Self,” KKB examine their worries about the state of the world,
bending time by including a line about global warming in a song styled toward Brill Building pop.
Elsewhere on Time ‘n’ Place , KKB look into multiverse theory (on “If I’d Known,” a Randy
Newman-inspired song featuring a verse rapped by Jamie) and the shift in perspective that
comes with getting older (on “Swimming,” a bittersweet tribute to singer-songwriter Yumi
Matsutoya). Recorded with a gang of their dearest friends, all singing together in a ragtag
chorus, “Sometimes” is a tear-jerkingly hopeful song about pushing through depression. An
album concerned with the sanctity of physical space in an increasingly virtual world, Time ‘n’
Place also speaks to the thrill of going outside (on “Outside”), the tranquility of the town dump
(on “Dump”), and the surreal stillness of a deserted rest stop (on “Rest Stop,” a track that
finishes the album in a beautifully glitched-out non-ending).
Within the cartography of Time ‘n’ Place , the most important space is the suburbs, an aspect of
their shared past that KKB find infinitely formative. As kids, each member quickly learned the
need to invent their own wildness and excitement, embracing misfit status in a place where any
form of self-expression could be seen as aberrant. That iconoclastic spirit has carried over to
KKB’s current role in the musical landscape, with Time ‘n’ Place partly conceived as a reaction
against the sterility of playlist culture. It’s a sublimely untidy album, anarchic but balletic in grace,
music born from willful imagination and a sense of purpose best captured in the band’s own
words: “More than ever music needs to be set free, because it can be anything, so we just
decided to do whatever the fuck we wanted.”
Jaakko Eino Kalevi
Jaakko Eino Kalevi
n this age of constant connectivity, switching off has become one of the great luxuries of modern life, and it’s one of the reasons Jaakko Eino Kalevi has called his new album Out of Touch. He explores what he calls this “essential, blissed out” state on this second album for Weird World – his first since 2015’s self-titled release – as he meditates, in classic Jaakko fashion, on the merry-go-round of the daily grind.

Drawing inspiration from time spent in Athens, on Out of Touch the Finnish songwriter broadens his horizons while focusing on his inner self. “Everyone knows the meaning of out of touch and it usually has negative connotations, such as lacking the latest information,” he says. “But to be out of touch can be the most ideal state.”

Written and produced by Jaakko Eino Kalevi in 2017 in studios in Helsinki and Berlin, where he lives, these ten new songs are among the richest he has composed. Ranging in style from the Gerry Rafferty swagger of ‘China Eddie’ and Motown psych of ‘This World’ to the Aegean dub of ‘Conceptual Mediterranean Part 1’ and continental pop of ‘People in the Centre of the City’, each song is characterised by that familiar JEK warmth and melodic flair. This album – his fifth solo set – feels like a natural step forward for an artist whose all-round skills have led him down some intriguing paths in the time since his last full-length. Notably, he played on David Byrne’s recent ‘American Utopia’ album, and in 2016 he was invited to join the line-up of Crammed Discs’ cult Belgian new-wave band Aksak Maboul for a run of shows. Last year, Jaakko’s synth act Man Duo released their debut album Orbit.

Much of this new record, he says, was inspired by the hazier elements of human experience: childhood recollections, nocturnal adventures, dreams and chance encounters. “When I was a kid, the things I was most afraid of were junkies and aliens,” he says of ‘Emotions in Motion’, one of the album’s many standout cuts. “I lived in the countryside and I was always happy to visit my cousin in the city because you’re more likely to get kidnapped in the countryside as there are fewer people for the aliens to choose from.” ‘You were afraid of junkies and aliens, but that is no more… those days are gone’, he sings in the chorus, looking fondly at a more innocent time.

For his lyrics, JEK seizes on the brief moments of lucidity that emerge from those situations. “The chorus on ‘Fortune Cookie’ is from a fortune cookie,” he says. “Songs work in the same way as those messages: you interpret them based on your own situation.” On ‘Outside’, which slides from a syrupy groove into a cosmic rush of Pink Floyd wig-out, he was inspired by a stranger outside a coffee shop. “This guy came out from the park and asked me if I would like to have the ‘perfect formula’ for the day,” he recalls. “I said yes, and he wrote something on this piece of paper. I used those words for the lyrics of ‘Outside’. He made me feel like his words were from exactly that moment, about the colour of my shirt or the sky at that time, but then I met this guy one year later and it was exactly the same.” In Athens, another chance encounter inspired the record’s opener ‘China Eddie’, where the titular Eddie appeared from nowhere to lead the musician home, lost after dark in the city following a late night in a bar.

As far back as 2011’s Töölö Labyrinth LP, named after his former Helsinki neighbourhood, a sense of place has been pivotal to the Finn’s artistic output. Although based in Berlin since 2014 – “sometimes I wonder what I’m doing in Germany” – his birthplace still wields some influence. On ‘People in the Centre of the City’, he recalls his time as a tram driver in Helsinki. “I began to notice that sometimes people in the city would have so much perfume on that the whole tram would smell really strongly but so perfectly. It’s so stupid I had to make a song about it.” For the record’s spellbinding closer ‘Lullaby’, he looks back even further, reconstructing a barely remembered song he first heard over 15 years ago, assembling the pieces from memory alone. “I made my own version just trying to remember it. I’m sure it’s not the same, it’s my best guess.”

He plays every instrument on his new record, including the gliding lines of saxophone that lace the record’s lush grooves. Aside from a lead saxophone part on ‘People in the Centre of the City’ by Jorja Renn (Bryan Ferry’s regular foil), additional vocals by Kari Jahnsen of Farao (also a collaborator on 2015’s ‘Everything Nice’ single) and consultation with his producer friend Sami Toroi when it came to mixing, the product is entirely Jaakko’s own. “I write and record at the same time, it’s easier,” he says. “I don’t have to communicate and explain my ideas, I can keep control and it all fits better that way. For the first time I was recording in a real studio. Before, I would always record at home and do the drums in the rehearsal room. Now I have this studio in Berlin and I always go there to push things forward.”

Having arrived on Weird World in 2013 as the first Nordic artist to sign to the Domino stable, Jaakko Eino Kalevi has continued to enchant and surprise with a string of otherworldly jams. From his ‘Dreamzone’ EP’s serene cut ‘No End’ to a street-smart disco EP for Beats in Space and a collaboration with DJ Sotofett on Honest Jon’s, not to mention the baroque pop of 2015’s self-titled album, whatever style he turns his hand to is guaranteed to raise a smile and radiate warmth.

On Out of Touch, a record that drifts beautifully from one misty, elusive sensation to the next, Jaakko Eino Kalevi offers a reinterpretation of that phrase. “You don’t always have to be in touch with the feed,” he says. “To be out of touch is to switch off, to not follow, to be in touch with the essential and the blissed out.” In our strange modern world, this is advice we should heed.
Venue Information:
The Casbah - San Diego
2501 Kettner Blvd.
San Diego, CA, 92101
http://www.casbahmusic.com