Six-piece jangle-pop band CalicoLoco, posing with bouquets of flowers in their hands
CalicoLoco Credit: Tracy Conoboy

Since 2019, local jangle-pop six-piece CalicoLoco have been dropping singles whose smart, rigorous songwriting sensibility reminds Gossip Wolf of 80s UK indie-pop masters such as Prefab Sprout and Aztec Camera. Last month, the band released their sharpest single yet, the emo-tinged, radio-ready “The Bad Hair Day”—and it has to be the catchiest jam about fringe haircuts and depression ever recorded! On Friday, March 11, CalicoLoco play at Cafe Mustache on a bill with California indie singer-songwriter Porkboii, with whom they collaborated on the dreamy 2021 single “Spoken Word,” and locals the Velcro Lewis Group. This wolf is keeping paws crossed that they’ll team up for an all-star live performance!

Two of CalicoLoco’s recent singles, including a collaboration with Porkboii

Last week, Variety broke the news that veteran music publicist Cary Baker will retire this month after 42 years in the biz. Variety’s tribute to Baker details his contributions in Americana, blues, and rock, but it overlooks the first piece of published music writing he ever did: Baker grew up in Chicago, and as a high school junior in fall 1971, he sent the Reader a story about slide guitarist and Maxwell Street regular Blind Arvella Gray. Baker’s piece ran in the 11th issue of the paper on January 7, 1972, and he’d shortly help Gray find a label for what would turn out to be his only album (Baker would also reissue it on his Conjuroo imprint in 2005). Baker’s last day as a publicist will be Friday, March 18; he’ll close Conqueroo, the PR firm he launched in 2004. After a little rest, he plans to focus on writing books about music history.

Gossip Wolf has been obsessed with local dance trio Purelink since they dropped the engrossing ambient EP Bliss / Swivel last spring. On Friday, Purelink producer Tommy Paslaski, aka Concave Reflection, dropped a full-length called The Best People Are Like Water, whose serene beatscapes stay cozily inside the Purelink comfort zone. The album came out via Australian label Theory Therapy, which augmented the digital release with a cassette edition of 50 copies.

On the Bandcamp page for The Best People Are Like Water, Tommy Paslaski of Concave Reflection describes his creative process: “Layering and layering until I have a cohesive thought.”

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Cary Baker’s 1972 Reader Story