To Do List

TO DO LIST: Listen Local First Showcase at the Red Palace TONIGHT!!!

While the rest of the universe survived last week’s Mayan End of Days predictions, the District did not emerge unscathed as the Red Palace is slated to shutter on January 1.  Fortunately, the venue is not going into that good night with a whimper, but with a series of sonic cacophonic kabooms – and on the docket for Saturday are local favorites Paperhaus, Mittenfields, and Dance for the Dying.  All three will be taking the stage to help rock the bastard child of the Black & the Red and the Palace of Wonders right on out of existence.


Paperhaus emerges from their 3rd Street rowhouse to deliver multi-instrumental RAWK, with a splash of punk and a dash of psychedelic for flavor.  The members of Paperhaus are known for their hospitality to other bands and local music fans alike, and after you hear them you’ll understand why everyone flocks to their open-door house parties:


Do you like guitar?  How about two guitars?  Wait, you think you can handle THREE guitars?  Then Mittenfields is the band for you - delivering dramatic, grandiose shows that fill all your headholes with wonderful noise, their local shows are not to be missed:


Need another reason to drag yer butt down to H Street on Saturday night?  Dance for the Dying may cause uncontrolled hair flinging, spastic fits of joy, and vocal entrancement.  Touring on their new dancelicious EP, they promise to help you burn off several thousand of the calories you ingested over the past three weeks:

So don’t sit around crying in your corn flakes about wasted 2012 resolutions and the loss of the Red Palace – come join us for a three-prong attack on your senses destined to rescue the weekend from becoming the taint of the year (it ain’t Christmas and it ain’t New Year’s Eve). 

 We’d love to let you win some tickets, but this one is $10 day of show only, so get down there early and get your RAWK on

TO DO LIST: Wanda Jackson TONIGHT @ The Hamilton LIve!!!

The Hamilton has excelled at finding living legends to grace its stage. Tonight is no different as the “first lady of rockabilly,” Wanda Jackson, takes the stage. The Oklahoma City native has been a relentless musical force throughout her career, which now spans nearly 57 years, including a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction in 2009. There’s not much Jackson can’t do and she keeps on doing it well.

Her most recent album, Unfinished Business, produced by Justin Townes Earle, is a showcase of all her formidable skills in country, blues, and of course, rockabilly. The album kicks off with a fantastic version of Freddie King’s “Tore Down,” (a more famous version was done by Eric Clapton on his From the Cradle album), and the 73-year old Jackson rips it up. The album flows through nine more wonderful numbers, all featuring Jackson’s hard-edged but lovely voice, which has that “lived in” sound she’s enjoyed since her youth and which has been emulated by countless of her modern admirers. One of those admirers was the late Amy Winehouse, whom Jackson honored with a cover of “You Know I’m No Good” on the  Jack White-produced 2011 album The Party Ain’t Over. The album ends with a soft version of Woody Guthrie’s “California Stars” which, while clearly nodding towards the Billy Bragg/Wilco version, becomes all Jackson’s.

There aren’t many artists around who have worked with Jack White, Cyndi Lauper, The Cramps, Buck Owens, and both Elvises (Presley and Costello), not to mention be a part of a biopic about Johnny Cash. They don’t get more legendary than Wanda Jackson, and you can expect those years of experience to be on display tonight.

TO DO LIST: Ryan Montbleau Band @ The Hamilton

The day after Thanksgiving is an interesting time to be in the District. Some people work, some people don’t. Lots of tourists, but nothing close to summer levels. Overall it’s pretty quiet. And quiet is no fun. That’s why the Hamilton will be the place to be Friday night for a funky performance by the always entertaining Ryan Montbleau Band.

Montbleau’s mixture of funk, folk, and blues was given a jolt of N’awlins soul on For Higher, the band’s most recent album (which was financed by a wildly successful campaign). The band entrenched themselves in the Big Easy and got help from such luminaries as Ben Ellman (of legendary New Orleans funk jam band Galactic), Ivan Neville, Anders Osborn, and George Porter, Jr. of the Meters. While Montbleau didn’t set out to make a “New Orleans” record, with a group like that a dash of bayou soul couldn’t be helped. The end result is a wonderful gumbo of funk and soul which – like all of Montbleau’s songs and indeed all New Orleans-influenced music – is served better live.

On paper, the music on For Higher seems like a departure for a guy from Peabody, Massachusetts who’s opened for Ani DiFranco and whose previous album, 2010’s Heavy on the Vine, was produced by folk star Martin Sexton. But for Montbleau, the funk and the folk are never that far apart. Known for playing more than 200 shows a year, he and his band have reached a level of tight that other performers can only dream of.

Opener Nathan Moore also knows a thing or two about crowdsourced performing – for more than two years the highly skilled folkie traveled the country without any booked shows, instead playing only where invited by fans. Moore and his manager webcast themselves 24 hours a day and were helped out by fans who lined up gigs at homes, parks, and rec centers. While the room might be a little bigger than Moore is used to, his charming brand of folk will fit right in at the Hamilton.

Tickets are still available here. We'll see you at the show tonight!

TO DO LIST: Turquoise Jeep @ U Street Music Hall TONIGHT!!!

In 2009, Flynt Flossy along with co-riders Whatchyamacallit, Pretty Raheem, Yung Humma, Slick Mahony  and Tummiscratch Beats had  dream: Make music that they love and deliver it to the masses. That’s not really a success or failure proposition, nor one that needs validation,  but the fact that their video for  “Lemme Smang It” has racked up over 10 MILLION hits on Youtube since its release in 2010 might be at least a small indication that this mysterious collective is onto something.  Is it ridiculous? Hell yes it is. But it, along with the rest of the songs in the Jeep’s ever expanding catalog are delivered with such skill and conviction that it’s impossible to deny. Laugh if you must, how many artists do you know of who can fearlessly rhyme “smash/bang fusion” with “coochie contusion,” all while busting dance moves that would do the King of Pop proud?

They’ve delivered acclaimed sets at the likes of SXSW and more recently Fun Fun Fun Fest (both in Austin) and tonight it’s our turn DC, as Jeep will at long last roll into town to spread the love (and other things) all over U Street Music Hall. Fans of the Jeep no doubt already have their tickets in hand, but there’s always room for more. So suit up, hop in, and get ready to experience a night of music unlike anything you’ve ever seen before – it’s going to be a wild ride. 

Tickets are still available HERE. Come prepared to smash and bang this joint. 

TO DO LIST: Jeremy Dubs @ Galaxy Hut TONIGHT!!!

“Go inside your dream world…it’s a lot like here except not here.”

So sings Northampton, Massachusetts’ Jeremy Dubs on “The Worlds” (hear it below) from his forthcoming album Words. It’s a wonderful track, a dream world unto itself, as if They Might Be Giants and Wall of Voodoo had a child who staged a Broadway musical. “The Worlds” is a fantastic introduction to Dubs’ music, and his personal story is worth telling as well as it’s the stuff of most music fans’ dreams.

In 2000, Dubs was in a band called the Bennies. He contacted Pixies front man Black Francis (who was then playing solo) to see if the Bennies might secure a gig opening for him. Francis was so taken with the young musician that he gave the Bennies numerous opening gigs (including one at our very own 9:30 Club) and even allowed them to open a few shows for the reunited Pixies.

Dubs was subsequently signed to Francis’ new record label, The Bureau Records, and released Speak!, a sorta kinda Harry Nilsson tribute album which features Nilsson originals, songs Nilsson covered, and Dubs originals that were inspired by Nilsson. The end result is a beautiful, pulsating collection of 8-bit analog synth songs that despite their simplicity are alternately playful and heart wrenching. Dubs displays a masterful ability to lay track upon track of his own unique voice (probably can’t be helped when your name is Dubs) which, when paired with the spare electronic music makes for something truly unique.

Watching Dubs bring this creation to life with his band is a pretty amazing experience. And with a new album on the horizon, Monday night’s show at Galaxy Hut will be a memorable one.

Kicking off the show is Home Body, another Northampton export (and no relation to the Capitol Hill furniture store of the same name). The electronic duo plays haunting electronica that calls to mind the Knife and Portishead.

Galaxy Hut doesn’t immediately spring to mind as a music venue, but the fun Clarendon bar features some great shows on Sunday and Monday nights - normally not big live music nights in DC. Get your introduction to Galaxy Hut and two great bands tonight.

TO DO LIST: Cold Specks @ Jammin' Java THIS SATURDAY!!!

Whether you like it or not, sunshine and summer fun are long gone, and it's time to buckle down for the winter - and that means some seriously heavy, seriously intense music, possibly with a bourbon back.  If this week’s election didn’t satisfy your itch for powerful female performances, then join us tomorrow night at Jammin’ Java for Cold Specks, a tremendous new vocal talent in one of the area’s most intimate venues.

Cold Specks is 23-year-old Al Spx on vocals, surrounded by a revolving cast of musicians and instruments, and she’s touring to support this year’s debut effort I Predict a Graceful Expulsion.  If you missed the album when it came out in early summer, you can read our review here, but don’t take our word for it - the album was recently short-listed for Canada’s Polaris Prize (and in case you’ve been living on the Moon, Canada’s been exporting a lot of pretty decent artists these days).

So if your hipster arms are still sore from all the Rocktober fist-pumping and your ears are raw from all the stormy summer noise, bring your weary body parts on out to the suburbs for a late show that promises to deliver a packing wallop of soul-melting vocals and some pretty amazing musical back-up to boot.  Tickets are available HERE.

TO DO LIST: The Asteroids Galaxy Tour TONIGHT @ The Black Cat!!!

No, that’s not Asteroids Galaxy Tour in that new Heineken/James Bond commercial that’s played incessantly throughout every sporting event you’ve watched lately. You’re forgiven for thinking that, however, as it looks similar to a popular and incredibly elaborate 2011 ad that featured the band’s track “The Golden Age.” (The song in the new commercial, by the way, is “Man Like That” by Gin Wigmore).

But there’s only one Mette Lindberg, and the sultry blonde singer of the Danish psychedelic dance-pop group is hard to miss and impossible to ignore.  When the band played in late January here in DC, they didn’t play like a band that had only been together a few years and had just two albums under their belt. They put together a loud, kinetic, ultra-high energy dance party with Lindberg vamping and dancing for the duration, leaving the crowd sweaty and delighted, with ears ringing for days. They’re a band that plays pop music absolutely riddled with toe-tapping hooks and the added bonus of a rock-solid horn section, and that show illustrated why artists like Amy Winehouse scrambled to secure the band as an opening act.

With another year of touring under their belt, the band has just gotten tighter – songs from their debut album Fruit, including the funky “Sun Ain’t Shining No More” and jumpy “Around the Bend” (which you also may have heard in an iPod commercial) take on a whole new life in front of an audience. Couple that with songs from their stellar 2012 follow-up, Out of Frequency, and Friday night is primed for an amazing night of music. The band played at DC9 in 2009, and their show in January was at the Rock and Roll Hotel. Friday’s show is upstairs at the Black Cat. You’ve seen the pattern before, DC music fans – the venues will keep getting bigger, and you’ll want to say you saw them first. 

TO DO LIST: Miike Snow TONIGHT @ The 9:30 Club!!!

Rocktober’s been very good to us, so help us usher it out in style, dignity and grace with a special performance by the National Sympho -- Whaaaaaa-huh-huh?  TO HELL WITH THAT - we’re going meteoric from now til Halloween, starting tonight with Miike Snow at the 9:30 Club.  You’ll get a bunch of guys sharing one name, an entrancing idea for a last-minute costume - just add roadkill antlers to that rabbit suit your aunt got you last Christmas - and enough Scandi-pop and synthesizers to fill the couch section of IKEA, all in one sweatastithon of a night. 

Miike Snow uses everything from barking dogs to marching bands to give their tracks a fullness uniquely their own, and they are rolling in tonight for not one, but two shows.  Will they be bringing the Grambling State Marching Band and a pack of wild dingoes?  These Swedes are nuts, so it’s entirely possible -- but even if they can’t swing it due to space limitations and health code regulations for the cupcake kitchen, you can guaran-damn-tee that MS will have enough sound packed into their keyboards to make you think you’re seeing a marching band.  And dingoes.

We’ve already been to, like, 50 shows in 24 days, so step it up with us as we grind out the rest of the month, and let’s see you shaking your sprocket tonight - Tickets for the early show with Nikki & the Dove are sold out (but ever hear of Craigslist?) - luckily for you there are still a few tickets available for the 10:30 show HERE.  

TO DO LIST: Ben Sollee @ U Street Music Hall - 10/20/12

At this year’s Newport Folk Festival, singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Ben Sollee got a reputation as the guy who would, and did, sit in with anyone and everyone. No stage was left un-graced by the 28 year old Lexington, Kentucky native, and many were better for it. Beyond Sollee’s virtuosity on the cello, he has an uncanny ability to shuffle though genres and styles as if they were all sides of the same coin and if you couldn’t pick up on that live (though, how could you not) then rest assured, this musical chameleon’s ever shifting colors are on full display on his latest effort Half Made Man.

Trading idiosyncrasies for a sound that leans closer to pop than he has ever before, Man is Solee’s most focused effort to date and one that leans heavily on the more jam friendly sounds of fellow Kentuckians My Morning Jacket to deliver the same soulful tales of love, life and social consciousness that his fans have grown accustomed to. Whether it’s in anthemic lilt of “Whole Lot To Give,” the jazzy optimism of “The Healer” or the stadium rock by way of Andrew Bird chorus of “Unfinished” Sollee is utilizing everything in his rather sizeable bag of tricks on Man, and the result is an undeniably soulful record that will please without fail on first listen, but will reward greatly the more time one spends with it.

This Saturday Ben will bring the songs of Half Made Man, along with songs from the rest of his ever impressive, and ever expanding, catalog to U Street Music Hall in Washington DC, and tickets are still available right here! So come find out for yourself why so many people are honored to share the stage with this remarkable musician. It’s going to be a great night of music. We’ll see you at the show!


TO DO LIST: The Be Good Tanyas @ The Hamilton TONIGHT!!!

It will be a slightly downsized but no less brilliant Be Good Tanyas that take the Hamilton stage this evening. Founding member Sam Parton was involved in a car accident early last month, and she was forced to drop out of this leg of the tour as she continues her recovery in the band’s home town of Vancouver.

While Parton will be missed, the other two Tanyas, Frazey Ford and Trish Klein, are a formidable musical presence on their own. The band’s three albums, Blue Horse, Chinatown, and Hello Love are superb, and the highlights were assembled on this year’s Collection 2000-2012.

The Tanyas make some of the most understated and beautiful acoustic music out there – a mix of folk, country, and bluegrass that revolves around the harmonies and interplay of the band members. While some folk bands aspire to sound “old-timey,” the Tanyas’ music transcends that kind of label – it’s simple, well-constructed, and a joy to listen to. Drummer John Raham and bassist Mark Beaty will join Ford and Klein to fill out the sound, but really, the two could show up sans instruments and still put on a fantastic show.

To put the Tanyas’ musical output into perspective, they’ve released just three albums in 12 years; show opener Dan Bern has released three albums since May, beginning with Drifter, a wonderful roots-rock travelogue that illustrates why he’s one of the best singer-songwriters in the business. Bern’s live shows are always fantastic, blending serious subjects and surreal stories with the skill of a juggler.

One missing Be Good Tanya won’t detract from a night of wonderful acoustic music.

Get your tickets HERE. We'll see you at the show. 

TO DO LIST: Primus TONIGHT @ The Fillmore Silver Spring!!!

A smart writer once said that talking about Primus is like trying to stuff a baboon into a paper bag; you don’t know where to begin. For the purposes of this preview, let's just say Primus is one of the most creative and unique bands of the last 30 years, an insane mixture of funk, punk, and experimental music centered around Les Claypool's fantastically innovative bass riffs.

Thus, it makes sense that such a unique band would put on a unique show, and on paper they don't get more innovative than this: at the Fillmore Silver Spring on Monday night, Primus will put on what is likely the first 3-D rock concert. Concertgoers will be presented with 3-D glasses as they enter the hall, which are utilized as the band jams along to images projected on a screen behind them. The images pop off the screen and float above the audience creating what the band calls a "fully immersive psychedelic experience." The concert will also be presented in quadraphonic Surround Sound - at least one speaker is placed in each corner of the concert hall so the music comes from all directions, much like the 3-D imagery. At various times, the band will turn around and "jam" to the images their "visualist" projects on the screen.

All of which would simply be smoke and mirrors if the music was no fun, but this is Primus. The evening's two sets will be culled from last year's Green Naugahyde (which features the amazing Meters-on-acid jam “Lee Van Cleef”) as well as 90s classics such as "My Name Is Mud" and "Jerry Was A Racecar Driver," to mention the improv and random covers the band does so well. This could be the future of concert going, and you can say you saw it first.

Tickets are still available HERE. We'll see you out sailing the sea's of cheese tonight at The Fillmore.

TO DO LIST: The Temper Trap TONIGHT @ The Fillmore Silver Spring!!!

Melboune’s own The Temper Trap is coming to town tonight and we’re pretty sure you should be there, mate.  After winning Best Band of 2010 in their native Australia, Temper Trap was nominated in Britain for Best International Breakthrough Band in 2011, and 2012 finds them with a dreamy new self-titled album (released in June) and coming to visit the Fillmore in beautiful downtown Silver Spring tonight.  If you haven’t heard “Sweet Disposition,” their most popular single and a song that is both gorgeous and pervasive in a Sigur-Rosy kind of way, you must have been traveling on the Mars Rover for the past two years.  Since the Snallygaster Beer Festival at the Yards ends at 5 p.m., that gives you plenty of time to Metro on up for an evening of Aussie chillaxing.

Blending soaring, hypnotic vocals with driving bass lines and shimmery synthesizers, Temper Trap promises to grace the stage with some space-rock cool, so come on down to see what the best band in Australia sounds like.  Hopefully they’ll toss in a lot of banter in that killer accent.  Tickets are still available HERE.

TO DO LIST: Calexico w/The Dodos TONIGHT @ The 9:30 Club

Are your brain, ears, and eyes still recovering from the 9:30 Club’s Matt & Kim double freak-out on Tuesday and Wednesday? Or does tension from your shitty job and the odd guy sitting too close to you on the Metro have you on edge and feeling like you need a vacation south of the border? Then slide on down to the 9:30 Club tonight for the lush desert sounds of Tuscon’s Calexico and give your body a much needed mini-break. Formed almost 20 years ago from a collection of ridiculously talented musicians, Calexico combines textured melodies with Latin instrumentation and flair, and what results is a smooth, smoky sort of cool floating on top of raw tension building underneath. The band plays a mixture of alt-country and Tejano-twinged folk, with a raucous horn section, accordions, occasional bells, and a bunch of other stuff you probably haven’t seen on stage before. D.C. is privy to only the second night of their latest tour, so don’t miss out.

Calexico’s new album Algiers is multi-layered, multi-instrumented, and multi-awesome, and tickets for tonight are still available HERE.

It’s going to be a swaying, grooving, let’s-go-sit-in-the-desert-and-look-at-stars kind of night. 

TO DO LIST: Public Image Limited TONIGHT @ The 9:30 Club!!

In a recent interview, Public Image Ltd. (PiL)frontman John Lydon said, "I made a bloody big noise when I began, and I don't expect that noise to die off anytime soon. I'm very proud of that. But that's where I learned to write songs. And here's the fruit of that tree. PiL." That fruit, as it were, will ripen the 9:30 Club tonight on a rare U.S. tour which they've dubbed "No Shit Now Rock."

The "bloody big noise" Lydon referred to is of course The Sex Pistols, an association Lydon will never escape (nor does he seem to want to). Even though the Pistols were only together for three years (not counting post-Sid Vicious reunions) and released just one album, their influence on music is incalculable and has largely overshadowed everything Lydon has done since. Which is a shame, as PiL's output has been consistently solid. Their second album, Metal Box, is considered a post-punk classic. In May they released their ninth album and first in 20 years, This Is PiL, and it was a surprisingly effective return. This is PiL continues their unique fusion of rock, pop, electronica, and dub, which should make for a fantastic live performance. But of course it's not just the music - you go to a PiL show to see Lydon. Even at 56 the former Johnny Rotten still gives it everything he's got when he performs, and he certainly isn't shy about keeping his unique opinions to himself. One can only imagine what he'll say while addressing a DC crowd.

Tickets are still available. Get em while they're hot folks!

TO DO LIST: STTPfest 2012 - Friday 10/5 - Sunday 10/7

Hey guys...just wanted to let you in on something (like you didn't know.) There's this thing going on this's freakin' HUGE. No I'm not talking about VirginFree Fest - though that is pretty killer. I'm talking about a city wide, veritable EXPLOSION of music that is this years Sweet Tea Pumpkin Pie - STPP for short - music festival.

Now in its third iteration, the brainchild of zomghowdoesheevengetanysleep musician/promoter Dave Mann is taking over more venues, with even more bands decending on our fair city, all with one thing in mind: To rock your f@#@in' face off. How can you get in on the action you ask? Simple. SHOW UP. 

All day long at venues across the city, bands will be doing their thing and the only thing they ask in return is that you come rock with them. Sure a few of the venues will be charging a cover, and it's HIGHLY recommended that if you see a band you like you find a way to give them your hard earned cash, but in the end, they love music, you love music and everyone wins this weekend.

Check out the press release below for more details. We'll be out all weekend long live tweeting and uploading photos to our stream, so stay tuned for links to that and head off into this incredible weekend of music knowing this: For those about to rock, WE SALUTE YOU!

See you in the trenches kids!

Here's your press release.

TO DO LIST: Peter Mulvey @ Jammin' Java TONIGHT!!!

Many musicians have written about getting “in the van” to head out on tour, and by and large they don’t make it sound like a pleasant experience. Perhaps they should roll out on a $3,500 German-made black HP Velotechnik Grasshopper foldable touring bike, as that’s Peter Mulvey’s choice of ride, and it sounds like he’s having a fun time. Traveling around the country on his bike, Mulvey is, in his own words, “turning American into a European Socialist dystopia one folksinger at a time.” He’ll ride his bike into town this evening and do his best to communize Jammin’ Java. (Alright, in point of fact he’s riding from Union Station, but still…)

Originally from Wisconsin, Mulvey spent time honing his skills in Boston subways (as did Tracy Chapman before him). He now has more than a dozen albums under this belt, ranging from contemporary folk to acoustic rock to an all-instrumental album with longtime collaborator David Goodrich.

On his latest album, The Good Stuff, Mulvey focuses on a wide array of covers, from Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk to Tom Waits and Joe Henry. The songs are all linked by Mulvey’s fantastic ability with an acoustic guitar, which seems to be tuned a different way on every song. (His website’s discography lists the tunings for each song, which has no doubt caused many a guitar player to say “wait….what?”)

His original material is fantastic as well, particularly 2007’s solo acoustic Notes From Elsewhere, which best reflects his live performances – witty, insightful songs sung with one of the best voices this side of Leonard Cohen.


TO DO LIST: Blondie @ The State Theater TONIGHT!!!

In the indie rock world, Blondie’s self-released 2011 album Panic of Girls may have garnered more attention for its use of Beirut’s Zach Condon than for the fact that it was the band’s first record of new material in eight years. Condon played trumpet on one of the tracks, and the album featured a cover of Beirut’s “Sunday Smile.”

But the album stands up under its own rights – a fantastic effort for one of New Wave’s best bands, who have been splitting up and coming back together for 37 years.  In fact, Blondie’s last three records -including 2003’s The Curse of Blondie and 1999’s No Exit - are highly underrated. It’s not surprising the records haven’t gotten more notice – any new Blondie material is going to be compared to the 1978 classic Parallel Lines (which made Rolling Stone’s list of the best rock records of all time) and likely bring with it a discussion of the band’s internal politics.  On Monday, however, you can judge for yourself as Blondie brings their entire catalog to the State Theater in Falls Church.

The band does a fantastic job of mixing the old with the new, and revamping their songs so that they’re recognizable, but not rote.  In recent shows, for example, the famous rap in the middle of the disco classic “Rapture” has been replaced with lyrics from “No Sleep ‘Til Brooklyn.” And of course there’s Debbie Harry who, even at 67, can still command your attention as well as any female performer.

Tickets are still available, and you never know when it will be your last chance to see these fantastic performers at work so don’t miss your chance on Monday when they rip up the ‘Burbs. 

TO DO LIST: Crocodiles @ The Black Cat TONIGHT!!

Sounds Like: Jesus & Mary Chain, Ravonettes, Vivian Girls, Every bad-ass fuzz band on earth.
Why You Should Go: Because gorgeous sunny Saturday activities should be followed with a scorching dose of dark reality and noise.

Dreading Monday, when you slog back to work and make up something to say you did over the weekend to hide the fact that you spent 48 hours in your basement with a case of cheap beer, playing Dungeons and Dragons with your hamsters?  Black Cat is here to save you from ignominy and disgrace, by bringing Crocodiles to the mainstage for all the 80’s throwback distortion your face can handle.

If you’re not familiar with Crocodiles, think of every song the cool kids in your college dorm listened to, then multiply that by a thousand dark lyrics and three more layers of reverb.  Hailing from San Diego, where the weather is perfect and the beaches are free, Crocodiles beats back comparisons to California happy distortion bands like Best Coast by dressing like the Ramones and singing songs with titles that include “I Wanna Kill” and the brilliant “All My Hate and My Hexes are For You,” off 2010’s Sleep Forever.  The band thrives on delivering dark and gloomy lyrics on a big old platter of fuzzy, skunky pop, and you can even dance to it if you’re so inclined.  

They’ve collaborated in the past with members of The Slits and Dum Dum Girls, and are touring to promote the most excellent new release Endless Flowers, so drag your butt out of the basement and down to the Black Cat on Saturday and see what turns up.  Be sure to bring your earplugs, cause it’s about to get LOUD up in here.  Tickets available HERE.

TO DO LIST: Allen Stone w/Sister Sparrow and the Dirty Birds TONIGHT @ The 9:30 Club

Looking at Allen Stone, it’s unlikely the first thing you’d think of is “soul singer.” His J. Mascis-Meets-Todd-Snider appearance and Billy the Kid sneer do a fantastic job of disguising the spectacular voice inside. It’s a voice that’s perfectly made to sing R&B, landing somewhere between Jamiroquai at his Stevie Wonder-invoking best, a soulful Jason Mraz, and a less depressed Ray Lamontagne.

Stone developed his voice singing in the same suburban Washington state church where his father was a preacher. Though he’s still just 25 he sounds like an old soul on his two records, 2010’s Last to Speak and his 2011 self-titled album – or at least as much like an old soul can when singing about Facebook status updates as he does on “Contact High,” one of the standout tracks on Allen Stone.

To Do List: Corin Tucker Band TONIGHT @ The Black Cat Backstage

In 2006, Sleater Kinney, one of the most influential punk bands, never mind all girl punk bands, of all time either called it quits or went on “extended hiatus” depending on who you ask. The vacuum that the Corin Tucker, Janet Weiss and Carrie Brownstein’s exit created in the music scene was sizeable and pretty much remained that way until a couple of years ago when all three musicians returned to the stage, only this time in different bands. You all know how Brownstein and Weiss’s adventures have fared with Wild Flag, but Corin Tucker has been just as busy.

The Corin Tucker Band’s 2010 release 1,000 Years was met with widespread critical acclaim, and the shows in support of that record were raucous affairs that got back to the roots of her riot grrl history with Sleater Kinney. This week saw the release of Kill My Blues, the groups second album, and tonight the foursome will bring their new noise to the Black Cat Backstage for you to experience the new songs (and maybe a Shiela E cover or two) first hand.

Check out the video below and get ready to get sweaty and loud, because in a few hours it's gonna be time to ROCK!

Tickets are still available HERE! We'll see you at the show!