By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
Sounds like the perfect record store employee to us. —Noah W. Bailey
Gorilla Vs. Bear(gorillavsbear.net)
It's not exactly a secret: If you're the kind of person who longs to know about the coolest music months in advance of everyone else, Chris Cantalini's Gorilla Vs. Bear blog is about as much a must-read as any other outlet. The thing is, that's not the case just for locals. Pretty much anyone hoping to get a pulse on the newest of the new has long been well aware of Cantalini's discerning, hip-beyond-compare tastes.
That much explains why burgeoning web media giant BuzzMedia recently invested in Cantalini's music blog and why Pitchfork Media came running his way when looking to set up a new, alternative site called Altered Zones for readers looking for a more cutting-edge perspective than the one it already provided.
In return, Cantalini promises he isn't selling out—or selling anything at all, really.
But he is reaping some benefits: With BuzzMedia's backing, Gorilla Vs. Bear just earned a slick re-design that also makes its site load much faster. Considering that his blog even has a genre named after it (GorillaVsBearcore), we say the maintenance was well deserved. —Pete Freedman
Best Radio Show/Podcast
The Local Edge with Mark
Every Sunday night, sometime Observer contributor Mark Schectman takes over KDGE-102.1 FM The Edge's frequency and dutifully plays local music during his allotted 60 minutes of airtime.
But not since the early days of Josh Venable's The Adventure Club has an Edge jockey done so much with so little. Schectman scours the scene with a constant grin on his face, constantly searching high and low for the next band he hopes to play on his show. And he does so with a very respectable goal in mind: He hopes that, by showcasing the region's best in his hour-long slot, he can help convince the Clear Channel bigwigs to add their songs into the station's regular rotation. He's gotten close a few times so far, and the man who pays his bills by working as a marketing coordinator for Gold's Gym during the nine-to-five is confident that sooner than later his dream will come true.
And when it happens, you can bet he'll be proudly listening with a laugh and a smile.
"My gosh," Schectman says when asked his thoughts on the local music scene these days. "My local music pants are super tight right now." —Pete Freedman