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Thee Commons at Ivywild School

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Garage-rock has a long history of band names that begin with “Thee” instead of “The,” a practice that goes back to ‘60s East L.A. Chicano-rock band Thee Midniters. In subsequent decades, the UK’s Thee Headcoats, San Francisco’s Thee Oh Sees and, of course, Japan’s Thee Michelle Gun Elephant, have all followed suit. But only the upstart Thee Commons, who also hail from East L.A., can lay claim to being the first “cumbia-punk” band to do so. And while that infectious Latin American rhythm may not be immediately evident on more surf-inflected Thee Commons tracks like “Work It Out,” the cumbia party feel is undeniable by the time they reach the instrumental break. According to their hometown L.A. Weekly, the group is the best live band in Los Angeles, or at least very close to it. Hopefully, this current two-month, 40-city tour (somebody must have given up their day jobs) will spread that reputation beyond the group’s city limits. And since their Ivywild appearance is just five dates in, we’ll have the advantage of catching them well before the onset of tour fatigue.

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