In 1993, Noise Pop started as five bands in one venue on one day. It soon spread to 21 bands in three venues over four days and continued to expand from there. February 20 marks Noise Pop’s 23rd year. This year the festival highlights nearly 100 bands in 18 venues over nine days.


Oakland-based Les Sins will play The New Parish at this year’s Noise Pop.

The best thing about Noise Pop continues to be its emphasis on stellar local talent. Cathedrals, Giraffage, Blackbird Blackbird, Tony Molina, The Bilinda Butchers, K.Flay, Thao, Les Sins, Geographer, The She’s, Mondo Drag, Bells Atlas, Night School, Cold Beat, Waterstrider, RZN8R, The Younger Lovers, and the list goes on.

Along with this outstanding local lineup, 2015 continues Noise Pop’s expansion into Oakland. What started with shows at The Fox Theater has spread outwards and this year will include Leo’s Music Club along with The New Parish.

“There’s just a general reimagining of what the Bay Area is, I think,” said Dawson Ludwig, Noise Pop’s general manager. “It’s a less and less of an us versus them mentality and it’s started to reflect in the more borough feature that New York has.”

Now if only our transit system ran 24 hours a day, and our bars stayed open till 4 a.m.

There are a lot of exciting shows to see during Noise Pop 2015, so check out the full schedule. Here we give a rundown on the headliners for the four shows happening in Oakland.

Les Sins, DJ Cali, DJ Dials
February 26
The New Parish
$20, all ages, 9 p.m.
Les Sins is the electronic dance and DJ moniker for Chaz Bundick, better known by the name Toro Y Moi. Experimental and beat-heavy, Les Sins’ debut album came out Nov. 4. Check out the second single off the album featuring Nate Salman of Waterstrider, then try not to move your feet.

Geographer, K.Flay, Empires, Bells Atlas
February 27
Fox Theater
$25, all ages, 7:30 p.m.
Geographer is set to release their third full-length album, Ghost Modern, on March 24. For anyone in the Bay Area who listened the EP Animal Shapes, it wasn’t a surprise that Geographer took off nationally when the album Myths dropped. Their danceable electronic sound has a twinge of melancholy, but in a heart-mending, not heartbreaking, way.

Mick Jenkins, Kirk Knight, Saba, Noname Gypsy
February 27
Leo’s Music Club
$13 advance, $15 door, 18+, 9 p.m.
Mick Jenkins is an incredible lyricist in the best musical tradition of social commentary through music. His name has been mentioned along with Kendrick Lamar when discussing hip-hop artists who are on top of the genre. This is a chance to see Mick Jenkins in a small venue before he explodes.

The New Pornographers, How To Dress Well, Nick Diamonds of Islands
February 28
Fox Theater
$35, all ages, 7:30 p.m.
The New Pornographers are royalty of indie rock, an indie-rock supergroup that includes Neko Case, Dan Bejar, and A.C. Newman. Brill Bruisers was one of the best power pop albums of last year, full of harmonies and hooks. This show is sure to be high energy.

About The Author

Katie is the Music Editor at OL. She's a music geek, culture junkie, massive A's fan, and Oakland native. When she was six, she stood for five minutes with a felt pennant stuck under Chris Mullin’s armpit. Check out her Oakland music listings at, follow on twitter/instagram as @craziesthawk, or contact at

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