Behind the blog: Indie Shuffle

This week we talked to Hannah Simon and Jason Grishkoff, respectively the Editor-in-Chief & President/Founder of Indie Shuffle about music on the other side of ‘the pond’ and places worth looking up if you’re ever in San Francisco.

For any of our readers who aren’t aware of you, can you give us an intro to the blog?

Indie Shuffle is a San Francisco-based music blog that covers indie rock, hip hop, alternative, folk, punk, electronic, and much, much more. We shuffle through piles of independent music, old and new, so you don’t have to.

What prompted you to start a blog around that particular theme?

In September of 2008, Jason sent an email out to a group of friends that included some of the best new music found over a period of only two weeks (bands included Foals, Patrick Watson, and Flamingo Crash). Twelve emails and about 50 bands later, Jason decided created a website to host information about awesome artists in the indie music scene. Since that initial website, Indie Shuffle has come a long way. Today, we are happy to be able to bring you some of the best music we can find in a quick, clean, and user-friendly format. What makes our blog unique is that we have a cool player that generates a playlist of similar artists based on the music you’re sampling on the site, making music discovery all the more dynamic and fun.

Can you tell us who some of the bands/artists you’ve been championing recently are, and why?

Recently, we’ve been featuring MillionYoung a lot, especially since he dropped his newest album, “Replicants.” His chillwave, ambient sound is something that a lot of us Indie Shufflers love. Another artist we’re digging is Sound Remedy is remixing some awesome tracks (like this James Blake remix) and is dropping an EP on April 1st, so we expect to feature him more on the site. Sound Remedy is trying really hard to make electronica that’s different — not the same, redundant beat that everyone uses.

Who would you say are the ‘local music heroes’ in your area?

San Francisco always has some interesting local acts, but in terms of the indie scene, I’d say Girls and The Dodos are two of my favorites. The Dodos just came out with an exciting new album called “No Color” that everyone should definitely check out.

We’re looking for those stores and venues, etc, that you think do an outstanding job. Could you name the top three gigs you’ve ever been to?

Top three gigs: The Flaming Lips, Arcade Fire, and Bon Iver.

I saw the Lips at the Fox in Oakland - it’s a beautiful, majestic theater - and The Flaming Lips are wild in concert. You can check out a review of that show here.

Arcade Fire played at The Greek in Berkeley — their sound filled the entire venue, which was jam-packed with fans. The Greek can be hit or miss because it’s outdoors, but you can’t beat seeing your favorite band underneath the stars.

I saw Bon Iver at The Fillmore in San Francisco — The Fillmore is one of those places that has been around forever. They have a great reputation of handing out free posters for sold-out shows (I definitely snagged one for Bon Iver), and the chandeliers hanging on the ceiling give the place a Victorian vibe.

Any thoughts on who your artist of 2011 might be (or is it too early to tell)?

It’s definitely too early to tell - so many bands are releasing their debut albums this year - but I can say that James Blake has been a favorite of 2011 thus far. His self-titled EP is emotional, beautiful, and experimental… in the best way possible. In a completely different genre, Smith Westerns would be another band to watch. They rocked SXSW and with their badass garage-rock sound, they’re slowly gaining a huge following.