It's Halloween! Yes, that magical holiday that encourages children to take candy from strangers. For one night, it's acceptable for anyone to dress like "slutty" versions of Disney characters, and let us not forget the clever jackasses all across the country who will dress in blackface and woefully proclaim, "But I'm not racist, I swear!"
All Hallows' Eve is going down whether you love it or not, so just give in and throw on your clever last-minute (and culturally relevant) costume. We've laid out a great list for not only tonight, but for Saturday and Sunday as well, so read on and plan for the weekend ahead.
Friday, October 31
Avi Buffalo October 31 Old Rock House 8 p.m. | $20 The somewhat surreal, somewhat folksy band Avi Buffalo had a surefire plan to avoid the sophomore slump from the start. Its 2010 Sub Pop debut offered plenty of quirky sing-alongs, but in its indie-pop-centric modesty the music was hardly mind-blowing. This year's At Best Cuckold is simply that album plus studio savvy and a trumpet-muted love for the Zombies. Avi Zahner-Isenberg writes with charming mirth -- "Memories of You" juxtaposes pop grace with some of the goofiest lyrics of the year -- but he also knows that opting out of the race to the indie-rock bottom is the best bet. By just letting beautiful melodies lead the way, Avi Buffalo might just win the audience it deserves. (CS)
CaveofswordS w/ Pat Sajak Assassins, Superfun Yeah Yeah Rocketship October 31 CBGB 10 p.m. | Free Vocalist Sunyatta McDermott leads CaveofswordS with a powerful voice, bringing together a hot fever dream of shoegaze and indie pop. The group connects so well onstage you'd think they're psychically linked. Pat Sajak Assassins has played on Halloween for the past ten years or so. For whatever reason, that band has a love affair with the holiday, but don't expect covers like most of the other shows on the same night -- this concert keeps things original. (JH)
Halloween Covers Show w/ So Many Dynamos (as Devo), Demonlover (as Prince), Trauma Harness (as Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark), The Humanoids (as the Damned), Escalade, Shaved Women (as Rudimentary Peni), Mark Willey and Friends (as Roxy Music) October 31 Melt 9 p.m. | Free Halloween is all about dressing up and pretending to be something else, so fittingly, this All Hallows' Eve will see entire bands dressing up and pretending to be completely different groups. The yearly event always brings out a big crowd, and this year it will attempt to fit a large chunk of the south-city music scene (and their costumes) into Melt. The lineup features sets from So Many Dynamos as Devo, Demonlover as Prince, Trauma Harness as Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, the Humanoids as the Damned, Shaved Women as Rudimentary Peni and Mark Willey and friends as Roxy Music. The show also promises unannounced surprise performances and guest stars (including Escalade as an unknown performer). It's a free show, but just like last year, organizers will be accepting donations for a charity cause at the door. (JL)
Hallow-WEEN w/ Fattback and Dock Ellis Cooper: A Tribute to Alice Cooper October 31 Off Broadway 8 p.m. | $10-$13 With Gene Ween now living the sober life and leaving the band behind him, Off Broadway's annual Hallow-WEEN tribute show may be St. Louis' only chance to see the group's music performed in a live setting. This year features Dock Ellis Cooper -- it shouldn't take you a lot of effort to figure that one out. Exciting! (DH)