Our second offering of prizes comes from two great bands playing on Tuesday night at the Independent: Great Northern and Loney, Dear. For a long time we had an irrational aversion to the name "Loney, Dear" because our internal copy editor (who never shuts off) kept recoiling at the misspelling of "lonely". Once we accepted the strange stage name of Swedish singer-songwriter Emil Svanängen, we listened to the record with an open mind and really liked it. The music on Loney, Noir is upbeat, dreamy and moody and Emil has an exuberant falsetto that reminds us a little of Sigur Rós. Opening the show is Great Northern, a band that mixes things up from grandiose and glum to cheery and bright, first the boys singing and then the girls. Two winners will receive Loney, Dear's Loney, Noir album, and one winner gets a Great Northern T-shirt and a copy of their brand new album Trading Twilight For Daylight. Enter to win below (Contest ends 5/30; winner will be notified via email.):

We saw several great shows last week. On Thursday night we headed to Hotel Utah to see Birds & Batteries for the first time, and thankfully they lived up to our hopes that they could pull things off live. The digital/analog, organic/synthetic (birds/batteries) themes made total sense as the guitar, bass and drums were enveloped in samples and synths. Saturday night we saw The Knitters once again at Great American where the packed audience danced and hooted all night. We wrapped up the weekend at the Mission Creek Music Festival closing party at Thee Parkside on Sunday afternoon. Things started off slowly, perhaps because the afternoon show competed with the aftermath of Bay to Breakers. We came to see Birds & Batteries again, but stayed to hang out with our friends Dan from the Rickshaw Stop and Will from New & Used Records, and some new friends including the guys behind The Bay Bridged. Check out The Bay Bridged's massive coverage of the Mission Creek Fest.

spoon_splashjpg.jpgOn to this week's show recommendations! Tonight Popscene presents a special performance by the one and only Spoon at 330 Ritch. The longstanding show series rarely lands such seasoned artists - usually it's up and comers or buzz bands - but Spoon seem to be on a warmup west coast jaunt leading up to the Sasquatch Festival this weekend. And of course any buzz on their forthcoming record, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga out July 10th, can't hurt.