Reviews

CatSynth regularly features reviews of music and art. The focus is on modern, contemporary or experimental work in a variety of media. We primarily cover the San Francisco Bay Area, but occasionally find ourselves in New York or such far away locales as an electronic music show in Tokyo or an underground club in Shanghai.

Check out the featured review below as well as other recent reviews. If you are interested in having your event or work reviewed on CatSynth, please contact us or leave us a suggestion on Facebook. Note that with a volunteer staff of one human and one cat, we probably won’t get to all of them.

Featured Article: William Leavitt, Boyce/Greenlief duo and Karl Evangelista trio

I continue to work through the backlog of art and music reviews by presenting some of the openings and performances I saw on the particularly busy and fun evening of February 19 here in San Francisco. Although the evening included both musical performances and exhibitions of visual art, music was present as a central theme […]

Wayne Shorter Quartet at SFJAZZ

This spring the Wayne Shorter Quartet returned to the SFJAZZ center, and we at CatSynth returned to see them. [Wayne Shorter Quartet at SFJAZZ. Photo by Bill Evans. Via SFJAZZ on Instagram] In addition to Mr Shorter, the quartet included Danilo Perez on piano and John Patitucci on bass. Terri Lyne Carrington sat in on […]

CDP at the Make-Out Room, San Francisco

Today we look back at the May 1 performance by Census Designated Place (CDP) at the Make-Out Room in San Francisco, as part of the monthly Monday Make-Out series. We were all very excited to play this show. And then things started going awry. First, our synth player Tom Djll was ill an unable to […]

jean-Michel Jarre on stage

Jean-Michel Jarre at the Greek Theatre, Berkeley

This past Friday, we at CatSynth had the chance to see electronic-music pioneer Jean-Michel Jarre perform live at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley, California. It was part of his ambitious “Electronic World Tour”, which includes his first North American tour in…well, a long time. Jarre is perhaps best known for his innovative albums in the […]

Maryam Farnaz Rostam

KSW Presents Means of Exchange: Program Launch

We at CatSynth have a special place in our hearts for art about our home neighborhood in San Francisco, South of Market (SOMA). Means of Exchange is a new project presented by Kearny Street Workshop that teams up artists Weston Teruya and Kimberley Arteche with local businesses in the neighborhood to create storefront artworks that […]

Earspray

Hardly Strictly Personal 2017 Day 1: Vacuum Tree Head and More

We conclude our reverse-order look at the Hardly Strictly Personal 2017 Festival that took place at the Finnish Kaleva Hall in Berkeley about two months ago. This day featured Vacuum Tree Head among several other acts. [Photo by Karen de la Cuesta] This was among the best Vacuum Tree Head shows I have experienced since […]

Oa

Hardly Strictly Personal 2017 Day 2

We continue with our temporally reversed coverage of the Hardly Strictly Personal 2017 Festival that took place at the Finnish Kaleva Hall in Berkeley in March. Today we look at day 2. The evening began with Oa, the voice-and-electronics duo featuring Matt Davignon and Hugh Behm-Steinberg. Oa’s music involves the processing and manipulation of vocal […]

Hardly Strictly Personal 2017 Day 3: CDP and More

We finally catch up on the remaining show report in our backlog: the Hardly Strictly Personal 2017 Festival that took place at the Finnish Kaleva Hall in Berkeley about two months ago. We will be presenting it out of order, with Day 3 first. This day featured my band CDP (Census Designated Place) among many […]

Don Buchla Memorial Concerts in San Francisco

This past weekend, April 22 and 23, a series of concerts and panels took place at the Gray Area Foundation for the Arts in San Francisco. It was in the midst of a busy and event-packed weekend (including the March for Science which we have already written about), but as Don Buchla was someone that […]

The Amy X-Perience at the Jewish Community Center, Berkeley

As we are in the middle of Passover, it seems like a good time to look back at a Jewish-themed show in which I participated earlier this year. The Amy X-Perience brought together a mix of artists in solo, duo and ensemble sets at the Jewish Community Center in Berkeley, California. The evening was curated […]

SFCMP Performs Peter Evans and Igor Stravinsky

We continue to catch up on the many concerts we have enjoyed this year. Today we look at an intriguing performance by the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players featuring Peter Evans’s Lover’s War and Igor Stravinsky’s L’Histoire du Soldat. What made this concert unique was the way Stravinsky’s L’Histoire du Soldat (The Soldier’s Tale) was […]