Tweak Bird bird bird, bird is the word... Now that you’ve got that stuck in your head (you’re welcome), I’ve got to tell you, Crawler followers, we have got one wicked week of shows ahead, kicking off Thursday night when Tweak Bird alights on the Soda Bar stage. From Carbondale in Illinoise, the sometimes psych-pop, sometimes stoner-rock duo drags ’90s alt-rock through the desert (think Melvins meet Meat Puppets) and leaves a trail of happy face stickers all along the way. Drop your needle anywhere on last year’s Any Ol’ Way and hold it...hold it in. There it is, yeah? Cheech and Chong with amps. Local radness Ghetto Blaster and Kids in Heat get this one going.... Brick by Brick stages the 25-year-strong Norwegian “extreme metal” heads Enslaved with our all-time favorite doom-metal trio Yob! Oh, hell yes, with Ecstatic Vision and Griever setting it up, fans of the very metal brand are stoked on Bay Park.... Miss the doors at those shows, SanFran art-rock band Happy Fangs and likeminded locals Viva Apollo split Dave Good’s Of Noted bill at Hillcrest hideaway the Merrow...proggy jam band Umphrey’s McGee plays the HOB in advance of this year’s London Session (“recorded in one day in Studio 2 of the famous Abbey Road Studios”)...while NYC’s pianist-slash-mad-sound-scientist Marco Benevento will be conducting magic carpet rides around his warped Wurlitzer at Winstons in O.B.
Your favorite alt-weekly’s annual readership par-tay, Reader on Tap, takes over the Observatory North Park Friday night, featuring local rock-rollers Shady Francos, Flaggs, Burning of Rome, Blackout Party, and Nervous Wreckords for your best nickel-per-note value this weekend. Me and my music crew will be there talking rawk and quaffing crafty brews with you. (You’ll find me at the tap of Ballast Point’s Habanero Sculpin. That beer is the ballz of fire!) Should be an absolute blast.... Not into industry confabbing? That’s cool, as the Fiery Furnaces’ Eleanor Friedberger is at Whistle Stop, like, right down the street! Ms. F. takes her favored ’70s-style AM pop to school, infusing the goo with a cruciverbalist’s take on love (and not love) songs. We love (and not love) last year’s Personal Record so hard, we may have to sneak away from Reader on Tap for an hour. (Psst, I’m not really one for the gossipy side of rock, but did you know Eleanor Friedberger’s dated and dumped both Britt Daniel and Alex Kapranos?).... Best of the rest Friday night finds the Crawdaddys, New Kinetics, and the Bassics filling a triple killing at Casbah...the hard-rocking Joy and Harsh Toke will play till two at Til-Two with a liquid light show by Operation: Mindblow...while from Louisville K-Y, post-hardcore bangers Coliseum hit the Hideout in advance of this year’s Anxiety’s Kiss.
The gig I’ve had marked in Sharpie since I cracked the wrapper on my 2015 Onion News calendar, “Viet Cong @ Soda Bar!!!,” is finally freaking here. I could tell you that the post-punk Canada band has players from another awesome Canada band (Women), and that this year’s self-titled long-player will knock a minute-per-mile off your running pace, and that the pros at Pitchfork saw fit to score it an 8.5 and “Best New Music,” but you didn’t leapfrog the boldfaced Viet Cong, so you know all this and are probably listening to the disc right now. You want something fresh, so, I give you the Onion News headline for Saturday, March 7: “Deep Orange Sun Slowly, Beautifully Setting on Topher Grace’s Career.” In other news, another very capable Canada band, Freak Heat Waves, will open the show.... Else: Lansing, Michigan’s “drunk punk” trio Cheap Girls and Philly five-piece Restorations split a bill right down the street from the Soda at the Hideout...Casbah stages the O.C.’s classic skate-punk trio Agent Orange with local punk-rock throwbacks Death Eyes and Sculpins...and something called “Sleaze Fest” takes over Til-Two Saturday night, starting at 6p and featuring, among others, Gunner Gunner, Chica Diabla, the Seks, Focke Wolves, etcet etcet. Hit up the Til-Two web address (tiltwoclub.com/events/sleaze-fest/) for the whole enchilada.
Follow the Crawler into next week.