Warm up with CTM’s local music playlist for February

Bounce this month with Dezzy Hollow’s West Coast hip-hop, Golden Hours’ serene jams and Parque De Cometas’ “revuelto pop”

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Earlier this month experimental pop duo Vákoum, which consists of Kelli (left) and Natalia Rudick-Padilla (right), released a live version of their track “A Thought,” from their most recent album Linchpin. Kelli and Shani Rudick photo

Jakob McWhinney and Philip Salata

The world’s pretty heavy right now. I’m not going to qualify that, or try to make some clever joke. It’s just the truth. 

But you’re not here to listen to me wax poetic about geopolitics, or theorize about the rising cost of everything, or complain about the sandwich I accidentally left on the bus today. You’re here for some local music.

So, from the groovy pop of Sunsets to the woozy indie of Ten Bulls to the “icy breeze” of Vákoum, City Times Media is here with a little dose of escapism.

And as always, if you’re a local musician interested in being included on the playlist, send your stuff to [email protected] Please don’t forget to let us know if you’re a San Diego City College alum! 

Band Argument – “Mango Bug”

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Effervescent, bright Indie rock recalls an optimism that harks back to the British Invasion. I mean this in a charming way — we are not really in the most bubbly of times. Hence maybe why the album “Cow Tools” will be a joyous addition to 2022 with its upcoming release in March.


– Philip Salata

Dezzy Hollow – “Bounce” (feat. WC)

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Straight from Oceanside this new release by Dezzy Hollow exemplifies West Coast rap in its new but ever classic forms. Steady, rolling and with a twang of nostalgia. 

– Philip Salata

Golden Hour – “Talking to You”

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Golden Hour, the solo project of South Bay’s Chad Boland specializes in serene, mellow jams. His latest single, “Talking To You,” is no exception. It’s a warm, nostalgic pop song that conjures up visions of sunset beachside drives or pixelated vaporwave visuals. Like cruising through Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas without all the killing.

– Jakob McWhinney

Michael Montano – “Common Sense”

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“Common Sense,” the debut single by Michael Montano, is a driving indie-rock tune. It’s plucky and pleasant, with all of the wiry angular guitar licks one could hope for. A catchy, relaxed track that’s uncomplicated in a self-assured way. 

– Jakob McWhinney

Parque De Cometas – “Felpa”

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Tijuana’s Parque De Cometas has been releasing what they call “revuelto pop,” or scrambled pop since 2018. Their newest single, “Felpa,” is a hazy mixture of strummy guitars, hushed vocals and otherworldly swells of delay. It infuses sweet, expansive indie rock instrumentation with refreshing post-punk sonic grit. 

Catch Parque De Cometas live at Tower Bar on Sunday, Feb. 27.

– Jakob McWhinney

Peymaar – “A Vital End”

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Peymaar’s album, “Peymar,” as the title may hint, is a self-described journey of the self. “A Vital End,” echoes The Doors and sounds of Buddhist prayer. And still, aware of that, it pushes the soundscape into a new threshold. Quotation makes the album no less profound, maybe it even helps us confront our ghosts.

– Philip Salata

Sunsets & Foreignlocal. – “Pull Me In”

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“Pull Me In,” the latest collaboration from San Diego electronic producer Sunsets and singer-songwriter Foreignlocal, is a sublimely groovy pop song. The track is danceable, pulsating and radio-ready. A tinkling, hooky slow burn that makes you want to feel sand between your toes.

– Jakob McWhinney

Ten Bulls – “Virgil”

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Indie dreamers Ten Bulls’ released a video for their new single, “Virgil,” earlier this month and it’s an infectiously woozy display of sinewy pop. Awash in reverb, the band weaves relatively sparse instrumentation into a dense, hypnotic form that propels and immerses.

There are shades of Alt-J here, but luckily for everyone, I’m not referring to the vocals.

– Jakob McWhinney

Vákoum – “A Thought” live recording

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If fjords could exist in a Mediterranean climate you would listen to “A Thought” under a palapa with an icy breeze both numbing and heightening your senses at once. Creative duo Kelli Rudick and Natalia Padilla explore themes of loss and trauma in this electric lament.

– Philip Salata