My kid turned me on to my new favorite band - Lord Huron - their debut album is "Lonesome Dreams" and it's on IAMSOUND Records. If you dig the Avett Brothers, Mumford & Sons, the Head & The Heart and other smart folk rockers, then these El Aliens may be your new favorite band as well. Stellar strumming, heavenly harmonies - it's so old, it's new, but it's also so well done, you'll be a fan by the halfway point of the first song, "Ends of the Earth." There's also a delightful denial to the end of the world - "The Man Who Lives Forever;" the title tune is a keeper as is "The Ghost On The Shore." This a Top 10 album for 2012. As good as it's going to get for us for the time being: Lord Huron at the Museum of Natural History on 4 January in Hell-A.
Superstar DJ Steve Aoki's latest is "Wonderland" and it's on his own Dim Mak Records. A rich kid from Newport Beach, Aoki left the Orange Curtin and moved the 805 and UCSB, where he not only earned two degrees but was the life of the party - and party is life in Isla Vista. Aoki is the top money making DJ this year and it's easy to hear why. He builds the beat and gets some famous vocalist to do their thing, resulting in instant hits and plenty of them. Then again, everything is just a little too everything - too loud, too predictable, too by the numbers - but for mindless dancing fool action, Aoki is A-OK.