• King Tuff at the SPIN House / Photo by Jake Giles Netter

    King Tuff on How Jimi Hendrix Broke His Mind and Early Oi!

    Given his irresistibly raucous, slovenly anthemic songcraft, it'd be easy to think King Tuff frontman Kyle Thomas' favorites skewed towards trashcan kitsch and belching rock'n'roll. In person, though, Thomas comes across as friendly, thoughtful, and low-key, a far cry from his wild rock'n'roll sound — heard in budding form on the upcoming King Tuff Was Dead reissue, out May 28 on Burger Records. We caught up with the guitar-slinging Vermont native at the SPIN House at the Ace Hotel + Swim Club in Palm Springs during Coachella's first weekend to talk about his favorites, from cult authors to psychedelic touchstones. Jimi Hendrix"I think the first person who kind of broke my mind was probably Jimi Hendrix. Listening to him opened my mind up to where you can take music, and how far you can take rock'n'roll.

  • Justin Vernon chilling at the Haus Party / Photo by Jakob N. Layman

    Levi's Haus Party Brings Raucous DJ Sets From RZA, Odd Future's Taco to L.A.

    An unassuming white house, directly off Sunset Blvd. near the Chateau Marmont, was ground central for what was surely the best party in Los Angeles last week. The invite-only, Levi's hosted Haus Party was a mashup of high cocktail culture and straight-up house party. Upon arrival through the front door, guests walked into the living room/dance floor, and were immediately bombarded with jeans-related art installations. Front and center was a pile of clear trash bags filled with plastic bottles. Levi's Waste<Less jeans (eight plastic bottles can be recycled into a single pair of jeans) swung from cables tethered to the ceiling in front of the bags, with a very Warholian placard stating, "These jeans are made of trash."The 1984 classic Breakin' was silently projected on a wall opposite the laptop DJ table, and once the party got jumping there wasn't much space to move inside.

  • Antwon/ Photo by Jake Giles Netter

    Antwon Riffs on Martin Lawrence, Danzig, and Sex Marathons

    The electrifyingly eclectic Antwon is a pop culture obsessive whose grab-bag interests — from thrash metal to avant-garde film to Fox sitcoms — are well suited to his alternately raw and sensitive avant-rap. That freewheeling sensibility, delivered in a deep, unhurried voice over shifting beats, and showcased on the Fantasy Beds and End of Earth mixtapes as well as the recent In Dark Denim LP, have won widespread acclaim for the San Jose MC. SPIN sat down with Antwon to discuss his jones for Martin Lawrence, Meatloaf, and Kid Rock. Danzig and Ozzy Osbourne"For singers, it's probably a tie between Danzig and Ozzy. I love rock'n'roll. The guitar is an African instrument, and it's black people music. I grew up feeling that, and later knowing that. But music is music and it all has feeling. With Danzig and Ozzy, it's the voice and the writing.

  • Chrome Sparks / Photo by Jake Giles Netter

    Chrome Sparks on Loving Stereolab, Downing Absinthe Shots

    Prolific wunderkind DJ Jeremy Malvin has recorded under the names Professor Purple, I So Garden, Roommates, and DJ Norf Pole. But with his Chrome Sparks project, it appears the 22-year-old musician has finally found a sound in which to settle. The Sparks EP, released in March, serves as a mission statement: ambient pop with a cinematic, futuristic grandiosity.The Brooklyn resident and avid crate-digger took some time to speak with us at the SPIN House at the Ace Hotel + Swim Club in Palm Springs during Coachella's first weekend about some of his favorite things, from obscure disco records to Absinthe-fueled blackouts.Stereolab's Dots and Loops "I don't really have one favorite album that has lasted through the ages. Currently, it's Stereolab's [1997 album] Dots and Loops. I got into it maybe a year ago, which was very late, because it's many years old at this point.

  • Nite Jewel / Photo by Jake Giles Netter

    Nite Jewel on Aaliyah and a Bedroom Music Obscurity

    In 2012, Nite Jewel mastermind Ramona Gonzalez took her project out of the bedroom and onto the dance floor with One Second of Love — metaphorically speaking, anyway. (She recorded at a friend's house.) Formerly known for her wispy romanticism, One Second sashayed towards pop with its brassy, R&B-tinged vocals and glitchy hooks. With help from her husband and co-producer Cole M. Greif-Neill, Gonzalez is making sophisticated, sexy grooves for the post-everything generation. We gabbed with the Los Angeles-based Gonzalez at the SPIN House at the Ace Hotel + Swim Club in Palm Springs during Coachella's first weekend about idolizing Aaliyah, make-out songs and dive bars.   Aaliyah's Age Ain't Nothing But a Number"It was one of my favorites which came out when I was a wee lass. I was so obsessed with that record. R.

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