On its 10th year, Afropunk is returning to festival grounds and bringing Trash Talk, Lianne La Havas, SZA, Bad Brains, DJ Sliink and many more for a perfect celebratory weekend that’s coming up on August 23rd and 24th.

Afropunk is a cultural movement that gathers a strong community of alternative minds and the festival began in 2008. Recognized as the “most multicultural festival in the US” (New York Times), we are all invited to meet at Commodore Battery park to enjoy a great selection of live music, delicious food vendors and a police free skate zone. You can RSVP on their site and even purchase fast passes for an easier access into the park.

To get ready for this weekend, we asked a few artists performing about what Afropunk means to them. Check out what Cakes Da Killa, TECLA, UNIIQU3, Shabazz Palaces had to say and listen to the playlist we made of who you should see!

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“Afropunk to me is a no-holds-barred pilgrimage for those who live life on the other side black experience; an experience and way of thinking that isn't always showcased in the media or appreciated by outsiders but is typically appropriated.” - Cakes Da Killa


“To me Afropunk represents the evolution of change, creativity, rebellion, and innovation created by people of color in music. It has become more than a platform for people of color to share their art with the world, but rather a way to highlight the musical revolution to which we have contributed since the first negro spiritual melody was born, the first beat was spit out of someone's mouth rather than a drum machine, the first improvisational solo to a once structured song form, the first DJ scratch, the first skat, the first stage dive with mic in hand, and beyond. These acts of rebellion are now all musical staples, and we, the afropunk family, will always strive to create the unimaginable.” - TECLA


“What's great about Afropunk is that it gives you the other black experience that you don't get to see on the media. We're the rebels with a cause and it's amazing how people of all ages, races and sexual preferences can come together for the sake of art. Afropunk has always encouraged people to embrace being THEMSELVES and I'm really happy to be apart of the movement!”- UNIIQU3

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“What it means to me: the kindred of any time always naturally find each other. Colluding to participate in revery. Proving sacred spaces still exist.”- Ishmael from Shabazz Palaces

About the author: Briana Cheng has a lot of feelings that she sometimes writes about but mostly she takes twitter screenshots of online dating apps, follow her @banacrisp.

So, youve got your wristband on and youre counting down the days until the FYF Fest at LAs Exposition Park. Sure Interpol, Chet Faker and Mac DeMarco are must-sees, but how 'bout some of these other names? Is it worth it to go early to catch some of these other acts? The answer is yes. 

Here are some not-to-be missed acts playing FYF Fest:

DarksideSunday, August 24th


Electro mathletes got their panties in a bunch when Psychic, the 2013 album from Darkside - a collaboration between Nicolas Jaar and Dave Harrington hit the decks. With an album of protracted beats challenging the bounds of patience, the current tour was an opportunity to see this super duo perform. The recent announcement that this will be the last time the two will tour as Darkside, has made their set a must see. 

Slowdive - Saturday, August 23rd


It makes sense that a band known for 1990s shoe gazing might re-emerge to play festivals at a time when the selfie/navel gazing generation is ready to see them perform. Slowdive's gorgeous lushness is a perfect accompaniment to their gauzy vocals, a fitting threesome with the warm night in Los Angeles. Look forward to swaying to songs from 1995s Pygmalion as the band shreds through their fuzzy riffs on stage, never once looking up.

Benjamin Booker - Sunday, August 24th

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Benjamin Booker is a rock and blues troubadour with a mouth full of marbles. Obviously raised on a healthy diet of punk rock, Booker doesnt shy away from singing about the drudgery of living. Channeling an almost gospel vibe at a place where it might intersect with rock guitar, blues vocals and punk drums, his first television performance made David Letterman proclaim, “My God!” (And you know, Letterman has got to be an atheist.) Hard to argue with that type of endorsement.

Kelela - Sunday, August 24th


Kelela has an ever morphing voice that weaves stories for the listener. Accompanied by beats, blips, chimes and bass lines by turns, her pulsating R&B mesmerizes. Last year, under stars in Pioneertown, she took an audience for a brief sojourn into the Joshua Tree desert, punctuating the darkness with her ethereal vocals. This time, shell have a bigger stage to fill and more people to pull along, but with a hometown advantage, her performance is sure to shine.

Julian Casablancas + the Voidz - Saturday, August 23rd

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Familiarity breeds nonchalance and Julian Casablancas is written into our collective unconscious as the voice of The Strokes. Which makes the decision to perform with his solo project, Julian Casablancas + the Voidz, as well as with The Strokes at the same festival is a stroke of genius (bad pun intended). Curiosity and comparison will abound, making the audience the winner because Casablancas gives it his all. Lucky for us, this time, it means double.

About the author: Based in SF, Mai deeply obsesses about music, fashion, art and social justice. Chances are high she's photographed someone you know for her seven year old street style site, More info than necessary can be found about her, here:

From the underground to the inescapable, our roundup of new music that must be heard. This week, Pharmakon, Interpol, and the roughneck costume drama of Jason Feathers... 

Album: De Oro - Jason Feathers

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De Oro
, the debut album of alter-ego supergroup Jason Feathers, opens with a sinister drum beat and Future-style auto-crooning that quickly give way to dark synths and a chant-rap refrain. It’s a jarring transition, and “Leave Your Stain,” the track that follows, is busy enough to make you close all your browser tabs. Get used to it. De Oro -- the project of Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon (appearing here as a rapper called “Ephasis”), S Carey (“Toothpick”), and rapper Astronautalis (“Creflo”) -- is pure id from start to finish, weaving its creators’ stray impulses into a compelling portrait of the American low culture. Two years ago, De Oro would’ve made an Oscar-worthy score to Spring Breakers. (Maybe it’s not too late to be dubbed into the sequel?) For now, you can satisfy your visual curiosity about Jason Feathers with the liner-note slide deck that accompanies their album’s advance stream on Pitchfork.

Song: “Body Betrays Itself” - Pharmakon

Face-melting noise manipulator Pharmakon (also known as Margaret Chardiet) has a single out in advance of her sophomore full-length, Bestial Burden, which arrives October 14th. As the title suggests, “Body Betrays Itself” locates Pharmakon’s atmospheric dread -- which won raves for last year’s brilliant debut, Abandon -- in Chardiet’s recent ordeal of a harrowing, tour-derailing emergency surgery. Check it out at the Sacred Bones portal on SoundCloud.

Song: “Break the Rules” - Charli XCX

Does anyone right now know her way around a hook better than Charli XCX? Her line on Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy” has proved to be the summer’s defining sound, and she’s just come out with a new single, “Break the Rules,” that promises to be a balm on the back-to-school angst of preteens everywhere (and, for that matter, the many grownups who can already see the end of Summer Fridays up ahead).

Song: “Ancient Ways” - Interpol


Interpol is just out with new single “Ancient Ways,” showing the New York veterans in full command of the sleek downtown melancholy they developed more than a decade ago. Check out the band’s new record, El Pintor, when it drops in September. 

About the author: Spencer Shawcross is a freelance writer in San Francisco. He hearts the TL and its many music venues. 

Whether you're a born and raised local or a lost Bay Area transplant looking to find the best tunes in the city, we've picked out this week's best live shows in our home town of San Francisco for you to check out.

Fucked Up + Tijuana Panthers + The She's at The Independent (Tuesday)


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In the event one ever begins a career in wrestling wild bears, Fucked Up would be the soundtrack of choice. The Toronto punk band unleashed a killer album this year that will cause your ears to ring for about six months. Also fresh off a 2014 release, Tijuana Panthers may not scare you straight but still have enough kick to lead you into battle with their gritty garage rock.

The Fresh and Onlys + The Tambo Rays + Hot Flash Heat Wave at Elbo Room (Wednesday)



Have you heard the terrible news that the mission's Elbo Room will be closing down to make room for more housing? Here's a dose of good news. Hometown faithful The Fresh & Onlys have a 'cheap' show with The Tambo Rays filled with bouncy indie rock. Members of the Tambo's have been running around with Waters recently and are continuing to find their way on to some of the best party lineups so don't miss out.

Benjamin Booker + Burning Curtains at Leo's (Tuesday) & at Brick and Mortar (Wednesday)


Tuesday Tickets & 
Wednesday Tickets

Get in on the ground floor before ticket prices for the New Orleans buzzing act get to Jack White levels. You may have recently seen his name on the lineup for a few of the more massive US festivals or caught the full throttle performance on Conan. If not, throw on the sweat inducing track "Have You Seen My Son" to mentally and physically prepare. You have two options on either side of the bridge, one being the latest East Bay venue Leo's still in it's first month and the sister venue to Brick and Mortar and The New Parish.

Joanna Gruesome + Manatee at Rickshaw Stop (Thursday)


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It's always difficult not to include a Popscene show on any weekly list of shows. This installment takes a break from the standard electro-rock and gifts you with the punk troupe via Wales that were able to figure out how to produce the antithesis of Joanna Newsom's Disney princess serenades. Do a quick search for their live show and see how the seemingly pop group lures you in before their sonic assault.

Noisepop's 20th St Block Party at Public Works (Saturday)

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Yes, another major free show this week. The 20th St Block Party returns for its sophmore year as the latest addition to the growing list of NoisePop events. Nine acts make up the full music lineup joined by a legion of prime SF based restaurants and vendors. From 12 to 6pm you can catch Rogue Wave, Cayucas, Melted Toys, Ray Barbee and the Mattson, The Bilinda Butchers, Myron & E, 8th Grader, 1955, and The San Francisco Rock Project.

Which show will we see you at this week? Did we miss a show? Let us know in the comments.

About Mike: Habitual Bay Area show-hopper and new music junkie. Currently Artist Relations at DeliRadio and occasional DJ at KALX. Follow the music based ramblings on Twitter.

Ah, college. It’s perhaps the only time in your life when irresponsibility and mistake-making is not only permitted, but encouraged. With childhood in your rearview mirror and adult decisions looming in the distance, these four years are your time to experience independence, connect with others, and discover who you are in the process.

One college rite-of-passage? The humble dorm assignment. And by humble, we mean basic, monastic, and cramped (unless you’re one of the lucky ones who scored more modern digs). Either way, you want your space to reflect who you are, rather than feature a random collection of posters.

A few ways to deck your dorm in style:

Try removable wallpaper or decals. Just like some of the relationships you’ll have in college, you want the one with your dorm room to be commitment-free. Removable sheets of wallpaper and decals are an easy and affordable way to transform your space into something unique. There are even cool vinyl headboard decals if your room is bunk-free.


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Poufs are good. Okay, we get it—the name isn’t. But round floor cushions make it so that friends don’t have to stretch out on the floor when they drop by.


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You’ll get more use out of washi tape than you will out of your anthropology class. This stuff is a dorm room staple. Use it to frame photos, edge bookshelves, create wall designs—the possibilities are as endless as they are cheap.

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Don’t forget function. Try lofting one bed and using the space underneath as a study area. And make sure you have a system to wrangle cords, or they’ll take over the room.

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No space is complete without music. Your college experience should have a soundtrack. The dorm room will be the site of late-night pizza binges, shared laughter with friends, and bleary-eyed study sessions. None of these experiences are complete without music. Our DECK wireless speaker features HEIST MODE™, which allows up to 5 friends to control the music. That means you can share your favorite finds or stop your buddy’s stream of Air Supply. Just like college, music connects people—and DECK is the ideal conduit. 


Music from this week that channels your feelings and speakers from 0-100 like the famous words from your boy, Drake.

“Ride Slowly” (Prod. Mel DeBarge x MNTN)  - Boy/Friend ft. Fat Tony and Tom Cruz


“Started with a meeting for a drink, now we at brunch” -- Rapper Fat Tony begins describing how his relationship formed with a girl, which is relatable to most of our love stories as R&B Singer BOY/FRIEND takes The-Dream like falsettos convincing us that this romance is worth investing in. Premiered Monday on VOGUE, this collaboration with Fat Tony and Tom Cruz with New York’s beloved BOY/FRIEND is the second single off his upcoming EP titled Low Key.

“Nebulous” - The Underachievers


Brooklyn, Flatbush rappers The Underachievers’ put out their third record this week, The Cellar Door. “Nebulous” is the eighth track on the album and with a provided video of the lyrics, you enter their conscious minds and stories of everything they stand for. Follow the experimental production as AK and Issa Gold rap about touring with Flashbush Zombies in a dollar van leading to inspirational words of “so you can do it too, you can see the truth, seek it through”.

“Strong” (Evian Christ Remix) - London Grammar

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Tri-Angle Record
’s hit producer Evian Christ gave a sinister twist to UK trio outfit London Grammer’s “Strong”. Adding adrenaline with an empowering yet healthy dosage of drum and bass to the the bitter sweet sentiments in the track, this remix elevates you to a god level in dance music that requires a tight grip in able to keep up for the next three minutes. 

“Tuesday” - ILOVEMAKONNEN ft. Drake


A couple weeks ago, we brought you a song from Makonnen about how he doesn’t sell molly anymore but much more exciting things has happened to Makonnen since. Our boy Drake posted a new version of Makonnen’s “Club Goin Up (On A Tuesday)” where he delivers a verse similar to Makonnen’s high-pitched swag to Sonny Digital and Metro Boomin’s soft hypnotic productions. This swoony collaboration guarantees to turn up every Tuesday for the following Summer even Fall weeks. 

About the author: Briana Cheng has a lot of feelings that she sometimes writes about but mostly she takes twitter screenshots of online dating apps, follow her @banacrisp.