Last year’s best music, next year’s good vibrations

Peek-a-boo, I see you 2012!

Peek-a-boo, I see you 2012!

Back to the future You might assume, and you would be right, that the Energy Dome on Arts DEVO’s head is a conduit for a great many vibrations and frequencies from across the universe. It’s like a freakin’ Orgone Accumulator in there!

I do, however, tip my dome to the real psychics like Margaret VanLaanMartin when it comes to tapping into energies of the future. Tonight, Jan. 12, 6-8:30 p.m., at Age of Aquarius (852 Manzanita Court, suite 155, behind Holiday Inn), VanLaanMartin and her fellow psychics are holding a Prediction Party to answer questions for audience members about the year to come. (Call VanLaanMartin at 520-1900 to reserve a $20 seat, and visit

I called VanLaanMartin to get a taste of what to expect, and she was kind enough to answer a few questions:

Any big predictions for 2012? No big prediction, just slow growth coming out of the recession. And more people finding ways to do what they love and having it support them!

Who will be the next president of the U.S.? Obama will be continuing for the next four years.

V. Bozeman and Timothy Bloom.

What does the new year have in store for Arts DEVO? The addition will be bringing in the international music scene with input from your readers. I see an interaction where a reader will find a new artist on YouTube or other social media and you will share that link in your column.

You heard her, future, get online today. I am ready to link to a new adventure.

One more toast to 2011 I’ll keep this as short as possible. But, it’s gonna be tough since, thanks to the aggregating power of the Internet, 2011 turned out to be another amazing year for music. It’s taken me until the second week of the new year to completely sort through it all and some up with my top 100 songs of the year—by far the largest year-end list in my archives. Go “friend” Arts DEVO on Facebook to get your mitts on every tune (for a limited time only).

A lot of stuff making waves—Jay-Z with Kanye West, EMA, PJ Harvey, Lady Gaga, The Decemberists, and a massive influx of electronic music—didn’t resonate with me. And some popular stuff that I sorta liked (Gillian Welch) paled in comparison to less-popular and much more interesting options (Hurray for the Riff Raff).

A ton of local musicians had songs making the cut: West by Swan, Surrogate, Clouds on Strings, and a number of artists on the Thank You Chico, Goodnight compilation—Chris Keene, Kirk Williams and Phil Anker (aka “Red Bluff Phil”).

It’s so hard to choose my absolute faves (unless I’m getting 100 choices), but I will say that I really dug three dance-friendly numbers (“Party Rock Anthem,” by LMFAO; “Elle me Dit,” by MIKA and Pit Bull’s “Give Me Everything”); one nasty rap (“212,” Azealia Banks); the most chill R&B jam in the world (“OG Realness”) from a seemingly improbable Canadian R&B duo (OG Melody); a couple of goose-bump-inducing soulful vocal performances (the sexy “’Til the End of Time,” by the sexy Timothy Bloom and sexy Veronika Bozeman; and Brittany Howard on Alabama Shakes’ slow groove “Hold On”); a couple of spirited indie-rock rave-ups (“I Told You Once,” Howler; “Under Cover of Darkness,” The Strokes) some big indie noise (“Rubber,” Yuck); the pristine sweetness of Youth Lagoon’s “Afternoon”; and most especially the otherworldly sound of Zoo Kid’s voice (and guitar) on “Out Getting Ribs” and the perfect blend of noisy with bouncy pop on “Tongue Tied” from the debut album (Never Trust a Happy Song) by the eternally summery GROUPLOVE.


After Hours Poetry: Some of the poets from Grass Valley/Nevada City’s Six Ft. Swells PressJulie Valin, Todd Cirillo and Marilyn Souza—are bringing their after-hours poetry to Café Coda Saturday, Jan. 14, 8 p.m.