Tom Mitchell

Photo by Jeanne Rice> Electric Warrior by T. Rex, Queen II by Queen, and The Colour and the Shape by the Foo Fighters. "If I were stranded on a deserted island, these are the three albums I'd want to have with me. All the vocals are melodic and out front, and the songs are hook-laden and well-crafted. All three bands share another common characteristic . . . dead guys!

"All right, Dave Grohl came from a famous band with a dead guy in it, but it still shows that there are only two types of successful bands: ones with dead guys and ones that are going to have dead guys."

> Dharma Tribe. "A five-piece OC band consisting of vocals, keyboards, drums and two guitarists. The thing that makes them unique is that both guitarists play acoustic guitars. I've read a few articles about them, and when the writers notice the guitars, they erroneously stick the band into pigeonholes they don't fit into. 'Power folk?' I think not! They just plain rawk, and they don't sound like anyone but themselves."

> The Fire Ants. "This Fountain Valley trio are also unique and can't really be compared to anyone else. To me, a Fire Ants show is performance art set to an edgy, intense soundtrack."

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> Jumbo Size. "Long Beach punkers who play the kind of punk I listened to way before you could walk into a store as a geek—armed with Mommy's platinum Visa—and walk out as an instant cookie-cutter 'boutique punque.' This is raw, fun, piss-and-vinegar punk in the spirit of the Weasels, Black Flag and the Dickies. And I'm not just saying that because Mikey Meier and all his friends bring their amps to me for repair."

> Coffeehouses. "The best places to see live music. Many teens and twentysomethings realize that coffeehouses are the ultimate no-cover/all-ages venues. They are the polar opposite of bars and nightclubs: they are well-lit, serve beverages that are legal stimulants (it's still legal to drive after three cups of coffee), and have sound levels conducive to carrying on conversations without having to scream into another person's ear. Plus, an acoustic guitar reduces a song to its core—just six strings and one voice. Or, in the case of the Over-Reactors, 10 strings and two voices."

> The Lava Lounge in Long Beach. "Hands down, the best noncoffeehouse venue. Sometimes you just have to see a loud band and chug a few beers."

> This Is Spinal Tap. "My absolute favorite movie. I'm really stoked to hear that it's coming out on DVD with about two hours of additional stuff. I spent over six years on the road doing concert tour production, and I have to tell you that the thing that made Spinal Tap hilarious was that everything in it happens for real! We used to watch it on the tour bus after shows, and we'd usually be saying things like, 'Yep, that happened today.'"

> KIEV-AM 870. "The SoCal radio market just plain stinks! KNAC and Y107 estn muerto, and I don't want to listen to musically impaired, white-boy, hardcore pseudo-rappers telling me where to stick my cookie. I've rebelled: now I only listen to talk radio on KIEV. I admit it: I'm a flaming right-winger! I used to be rather liberal until I got married, started my own company, and had a child."

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