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The Agenda: Salva album release party at Low End Theory
Pliny the Younger coming to the Surly Goat, Verdugo Bar
In print this week: Valentine's Day issue
The Shots: The Nerves tribute at Origami »
3:03 PM PT, February 9, 2011
The crowd watches Audacity perform at a tribute show to the Nerves at Origami Vinyl in Los Angeles on Saturday, February 5, 2011.
Power-pop loving Angelenos crammed into Echo Park's Origami Vinyl to watch garage rockers Audacity and Tijuana Panthers play a tribute show to the seminal L.A. songsters the Nerves. All photos credit Cheryl A. Guerrero for Brand X; more after the jump >>
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Brand X Files: Mark Sanchez's 17-year-old fling? Josh Bowman's Valentine. Jamie Oliver in Santa Monica. »
12:04 PM PT, February 9, 2011
Mark Sanchez's 17-year-old fling? According to a surreal Deadspin story, the New York Jets quarterback allegedly "hooked up" with a 17-year-old high schooler. (The article does not include a response from the NFL star.) Apparently that's legal in New York -- don't tell Brett Favre. [Deadspin]
Josh Bowman, Miley Cyrus' new man? It must be those Valentine's Day vibes in the air: the tall, dark and yes, handsome English actor is the latest co-star to be linked to Cyrus. Can she get cast on "Gossip Girl" already? [E! Online]
Capcom offering $1 iPhone/iPad games: Among the sale list? "Street Fighter IV" and "Resident Evil IV," which happens to be this blogger's favorite game ever in its original console edition. [Touch Arcade]
How to take Ecstasy: For those ravers choosing to indulge in the illegal drug, the L.A. County Department of Public Health has whipped up a helpful flier on how to do so (relatively) safely -- which has already earned pushback from county supervisor Michael D. Antonovich. Harsh, bro. [L.A. Now]
Jamie Oliver heading to 3rd St. on Saturday: The celeb chef will be holding a cooking competition with L.A. high school students. Let's hope he doesn't bring them in on a bus full of sand. [Eater]
-- David Greenwald
Photo: Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez. Credit: Christopher Polk/Getty Images for PepsiCo
More in: Around the Net
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Film review: 'Gnomeo & Juliet' »
9:00 AM PT, February 9, 2011
You know how on Christmas, if you've been a bad child, your big present is supposed to be a lump of coal? I've often wondered what the Valentine's Day equivalent would be: rancid chocolates? Snapshots of your loved one snuggling with someone else? Your warm, still-beating heart, apparently torn from your chest through a huge, gaping wound you only now notice in those last moments before all fades away?

I have discovered the answer: free passes to “Gnomeo & Juliet,” possibly the worst animated feature ever to be distributed under the Disney banner. We must all have been very, very wicked this year, indeed. Continue reading >>
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Cover story: Five Los Angeles power couples »
8:00 AM PT, February 9, 2011
For this year's Valentine's Day issue, we got intimate with five of L.A.'s hottest heavyweight couples from the worlds of dining, comedy, night life, fitness and music. How do they balance work and play? Who's the boss at home? What's the most romantic thing they've ever done for each other? These questions and more, answered after the jump >>
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Tonight's music pick: Friendly Fires @ Roxy Theatre »
7:30 AM PT, February 9, 2011

Although it’s been a few years since indie dance-rock’s reign, with a new album coming down the pipe Friendly Fires are well worth your attention. Unlike fellow 80’s cribbing British dance-rockers the Klaxons, this trio is more New Wave than punk, all glossy production chocked full of lush synthesizers and soaring vocals. For only three frail Englishmen, Friendly Fires create a shocking amount of sound, with the Rapture-esque basslines and drumming smothered in cowbell and woodblock hits, handclaps and plenty of reverb. Ultimately, Friendly Fires tracks are remarkably catchy, anthemic enough for the arena but intimate enough for dancing alone in your bedroom.
Roxy Theatre, 9009 Sunset Blvd.; 8 p.m.; $20
-- Daniel Siegal
Also Wednesday:
Anna Nalick, Nina Storey, Kim Divine, Josh Smith @ Hotel Café, 8 p.m.
The Apple Sisters @ Largo, 8 p.m.
Meat Beat Manifesto, Not Breathing @ El Rey Theatre, 8 p.m.
Mona, Vanaprasta, Polls @ the Echo, 8:30 p.m.
Crystal Antlers @ On the Rox, 7 p.m.
Black Flamingo, Fake Your Own Death @ Silverlake Lounge, 9 p.m.
Ladycop, One Trick Pony @ Bootleg Theater, 9:30 p.m.
Ferraby Lionheart, Obi Best, Willoughby @ the Satellite, 8:30 p.m.
Photo: Friendly Fires.  Credit: Rebecca Miller
More in: Music, The Agenda
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The Agenda: Salva record release party @ The Airliner »
7:00 AM PT, February 9, 2011
Up-and-coming beatmaker Salva has been building buzz in the scene for his take on U.K. bass music, mixing funky, grime, house and more in a syncopated mess of low end and synthesizers that would be right at home on London’s Night Slugs imprint. Instead, he just moved from S.F. to L.A., bass music’s H.Q. in the States.  Now that he's in the City of Angels he'll celebrate the release of his full-length album, the excellent “Complex Housing,” by spinning a set at the legendary Low End Theory club night at Highland Park’s The Airliner.  Also DJ'ing tonight will be DJ Muggs of Cypress Hill, Brainfeeder's Samiyam and of course residents Gaslamp Killer, Daddy Kev, DJ Nobody and MC Nocando.

The Airliner, 2419 N. Broadway, Los Angeles; 10 p.m. - 2 a.m.; $10; www.lowendtheoryclub.com
-- Daniel Siegal
 
Correction: A previous version of this post stated that Salva was planning to move to L.A. He already has moved. 
Photo: Salva. Credit: Space Cat
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Gaming: Galactus lands in 'Marvel vs. Capcom 3' »
1:06 PM PT, February 8, 2011
Fanboys and girls will remember that Galactus, the purple, planet-eating elder of the Marvel universe, got kind of a raw deal in Fox film "Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer." Instead of being depicted in his full, admittedly goofy glory, he appeared as a super-sized dust cloud. But the cosmic comic book favorite gets his due in "Marvel vs. Capcom 3: The Fate of Two Worlds," in which he stands as the final boss. Judging by the above trailer, even seasoned 2-D button-mashers may have trouble with this one -- where's an Ultimate Nullifier when you need it?
The game drops for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 next week. Head over to Hero Complex for an interview with several of the creators behind the game, the latest in the long-running series.
-- David Greenwald
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What's your favorite under-the-radar cocktail bar? »
12:23 PM PT, February 8, 2011
When we're in the mood for a pretension-free cocktail with a price that won't make our dinner blush, we head over to our (now formerly) secret spot: Santa Monica's Tlapazola Grill, where head bartender and general manager Edwin Cruz shows off his mind-blowing and mouth-watering mixology skills. We know he can't be the only one flying under the radar, so we're looking for L.A.'s best-kept cocktail secrets: brilliant bartenders and the lounges that love them. Got a tip for us? Drop it in the comments or whisper it to us at brandx@latimes.com​.
-- David Greenwald
Photo: A range of Cypriot cocktails with names such as "Wet Noon", "Fire and Forget" and "Rose Ecstasy" are seen on display at the island's first pan-Cyprian Original Cyprus Cocktail Competition in Nicosia January 22, 2011. Credit: Reuters/Andreas Manolis
More in: Food and Drink
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Brand X Files: Keith Olbermann going Current. Kim Kardashian's royal fumble. Osteria Mozza gets fancier. »
11:34 AM PT, February 8, 2011
Keith Olbermann getting Current: The former MSNBC host will launch a new show on the less-known cable network. Hey, it worked for Conan, right? [Wall Street Journal]
Prince kicks Kim Kardashian off stage: Literally moments after having the reality star join him at Madison Square Garden, the Purple One said "get off," presumably the first time Kardashian's ever heard that phrase in her life. [Vulture]
See Meryl Streep as Margaret Thatcher: The first image from presumably serious biopic "The Iron Lady" already has us laughing, which we'll take as a promising sign. [Movieline]
Waka Flocka Flame to be PETA's new face: The gangsta rapper will go hard in da paint that PETA protestors throw on people wearing fur, we guess. [BlackBook]
Man-purses invade China: Men represent 45% of the designer handbag market in China, a trend we can't wait to see replace raw denim and Red Wing boots on our favorite men's style blogs. [L.A. Times]
Osteria Mozza doing $1,000 wine tasting dinner: Want to really impress your significant other next week? Skip Valentine's Day and throw down for the famed restaurant's very limited, very expensive wine-tasting dinner on Feb. 16. [Just Luxe]
-- David Greenwald
Photo: TV host Keith Olbermann, counting down something, no doubt. Credit: Reuters/Fred Prouser
More in: Around the Net
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Gaming: Don't let 'Time Crisis: Razing Storm' waste yours »
11:00 AM PT, February 8, 2011
At its core, “Time Crisis: Razing Storm” is nothing more than a collection of arcade rail-shooters ported over to the PS3 to take advantage of the light gun capabilities of the Playstation Move. The disc contains “Time Crisis: Razing Storm” (the titular game), “Time Crisis 4” and “Deadstorm Pirates” (which has nothing to do with “Time Crisis”).

“Time Crisis 4” and “Deadstorm Pirates” are nothing more than ports of their arcade versions, though they're actually decent game despite not being worth the cost of the collection. Unfortunately, they are rather short games designed to throw enough damage at you so you'd have to continuously pump money into their machines in to keep playing. I would have enjoyed them more had the developers decided to lose the credit system for continuing, because, unlike the machines these games were designed for, my PS3 lacks a slot where I can insert quarters. That being said, I would still gladly play either of them if it meant I didn't have to even touch the steaming pile of crap that is “Time Crisis: Razing Storm.”

Game developers have learned a lot over the years about what goes into making a great console shooter. Shooters on the Wii started off somewhat pathetically with games like “Red Steel,” but then grew and improved until we had some great titles like “Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles.” So I was quite surprised to find that apparently the developers behind “Time Crisis: Razing Storm” had completely ignored all of the lessons of the past four years and instead opted to produce a product of the same superb quality usually only seen in Chinese baby food.
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Recent Posts
The Shots: The Nerves tribute at Origami
February 9, 2011, 3:03 pm
Brand X Files: Mark Sanchez's 17-year-old fling? Josh Bowman's Valentine. Jamie Oliver in Santa Monica.
February 9, 2011, 12:04 pm
Film review: 'Gnomeo & Juliet'
February 9, 2011, 9:00 am
Cover story: Five Los Angeles power couples
February 9, 2011, 8:00 am
Tonight's music pick: Friendly Fires @ Roxy Theatre
February 9, 2011, 7:30 am
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