My word of the day calendar says that today's word is "skirl", which conveniently is defined as a musical term. Unfortunately, it is one that typically involves the act of bagpipin', and none of the bands listed this week feature that particular instrument. MISSED OPPORTUNITIES.
Alberta Cross plays Off Broadway on Tuesday -- no room for skirlin' in it's big rock and roll sound. Nelly is doing a free show at Soldier's Memorial on Saturday, but none of his hits are particularly bagpipe-heavy, I don't think. I guess Old Crow Medicine Show is the act that would most likely actually use the instrument out of this list, but Motorhead is the one I'd most like to see. I'd bet Lemmy can skirl the fuck out of a bagpipe -- after all, he's Lemmy. The rest of our skirl-free picks follow.
Black for a Second Mon., 10:00 p.m. July 16 w/ Cutthroat Shamrock, Sink the Bismark @ Lemmons - $5 By RFT Staff Not enough can be said about this town's hardworking, blue-collar ethos and the impact it has on the music scene. The band Black for a Second is living, breathing, screaming proof. Singer/guitarist Joey Jordan's soulful grit -- spiked with humor and despair -- pours through his searing vocal delivery, leaving any semblance of pretentiousness behind. As far as Jordan's concerned, those jaded kids in Brooklyn and Silver Lake can keep their hipster pastiche. He'll be sitting on the back of his pickup truck with a Budweiser, writing songs about real shit. Tim Pinkerton's propulsive, precise-as-hell drumming steers you through post-hardcore and punchy punk intersections. And the noodling bass dances around a nervy duo of crunchy Les Pauls. Black for a Second offers a blend of rootsy punk rock that can only be found in the Midwest.
Alberta Cross Tues., 8:00 p.m. July 17 w/ Everest @ Off Broadway - $10/$12 By Roy Kasten Alberta Cross is but the latest example of a promising rock band to meet a crashing, burning, big-advance-blowing fate in L.A. One need have no sympathy for the devil in the details of Petter Ericson Stakee's flame-out, but one need only cue up the flamboyantly embittered forthcoming release Songs of Patience to hear a rock band cut through the accursed comparisons to Oasis and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and find the psych-rock sweet spot. So what if the money for the weekend party is long gone? The guitars and harmonies and hooks still rage on, a little wiser, but still wild in the sound of big, vividly-imagined rock & roll. Don't Miss: ATO label-mate Everest starts off the night with new material from its excellent, play-very-loud third album Ownerless.
Tone Rodent Wed., 9:00 p.m. July 18 w/ Catholic Guilt, Pillow Talk and Violations @ El Lenador - $5 By Joseph Hess The thrilling use of controlled chaos amidst down-tempo rhythm spells truth for Tone Rodent's cult of noise. Blistering feedback merges with milky synthesizer, and the swarm of whirling guitars tug at the innards. Vocalist Adam Watkins beckons with lyrical mysticism, while guitarist Jeff Robtoy plays with electric fire. Tone Rodent is a band to be felt, for the wall of melody mates with a keen sense of texture. The use of repetition bathes each song in aural solitude, and with time the parts grow familiar and singular. Ashley Hohmann works in a double layer of percussion and voice, working as the auxiliary for deliberate pieces of psychdelia. Tone Rodent sweats a contemporary sound through the heavy pores of rock music.
O.A.R. Thurs., 7:30 p.m. July 12 @ The Fox Theatre - $36.50 By Cole Haddon From this 2005 show preview: When grassroots heroes O.A.R. decided to hit the studio and record Stories of a Stranger -- their latest album of infectious, island-influenced pop -- Lava Records told them to take their sweet, sweet time. Seems the label wanted these Ohio boys to get their sound right, because O.A.R. (Of a Revolution) has always struggled to nail their live sound in a studio. They come closer to hitting the mark this time around, although bringing in super-producer Glen Ballard adds an unwanted slickness. O.A.R.'s live show is still the real attraction, though, two hours of what bassist Benj Gershman likes to call "structured improv."
Motorhead, Slipknot, Slayer & Anthrax Fri., 1:30 p.m. July 20 @ Verizon Wireless Amphitheater - $41-$80 By Daniel Hill If one was tasked with the forming of a metal super-group, one could easily pull most of the members of said group from the lineup for this show. Dave Lombardo on drums (no-brainer; sorry Charlie), Scott Ian on one guitar (as long as he doesn't say anything), Jeff Hanneman on the other (better) one. Let Kerry King ghost-write the lyrics for that truly evil feel, and finally place both Lemmy and Tom Araya on bass and lead vocals, because it is hard to imagine either one doing anything else. The entirety of Slipknot could serve as the opening act that fans boo in anticipation of the (much, much better) headliner. Slipknot Objects: The members of Slipknot would argue that this band is only half constructed, and needs about seven more members to bang on trashcans and shit and to superfluously repeat instruments. My god, Slipknot is awful.
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