I could be the captain of your submarine/ That's my dream, cause we're a team/ I could be the subject of your neck tattoo/ Just for you, it's overdue/ We could burn our bags when we graduate/ That'd be great, it's a date!—“Sophisticated Side Ponytail” by Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head (later known as Brite Futures).
There’s gotta be some sense to the clumsy, chaotic and sometimes narcissistic grandeur so wantonly and wondrously displayed in this interwebz-mythic, IRL one-hit wonder. It’s from a band that saved up a huge amount of pop culture cred and then let it colorfully and casually spill out all at once. Even after a name change, they somehow managed to disappear back into the obscurity that’s always possible in the woods of the Pacific Northwest.
Anywho, after much research and some drinking, the experts at the Alibi music department decided the aforementioned cultural artifact is really about enjoying the wealth and variety of experiences available to hairless apes on planet Earth, something we’re not only very much in favor of, but also a thing which we can help you achieve. In a tip of the hat to such glorious expression, we suggest the following musical diversions to add to your own rockin’ repertoire.
Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head: “Sophisticated Side Ponytail”
The retreat of rocanrol from American popular culture has not been without some well-deserved teeth gnashing—mostly from the press I might add. This evolution away from a ubiquitous form also has had some benefit, including the ascent of other genres. Bar scenes once dominated by heshers, head-bangers and other devotees of rock are now filled with curious listeners devoted to exploring a globe of new sounds and sensations. Very Be Careful, an El Lay band specializing in a particular form of Columbian cumbia—vallenato music to be exact—have a gig at Sister (407 Central Ave NW) on Thursday Sept. 28. These masters of infectious rhythm and celebratory cowbell will be supported by Lone Piñon, a trio of Norteños (Jordan Wax, Greg Glassman and Noah Martinez) who are doing their utmost to revision and grow a twangy style of Chicano folk music that once flourished in these parts. Their recent release on Living Music Duplication, Días Felices, is indeed an indication of a sonic phenomenon that is happy and alive. That result is something that sounds totally now and totally tuneful. Check it out for between $15-$20 and a 21+ ID, beginning at 8pm.
George Thorogood and the Destroyers are having a “Rock Party” at the Route 66 Casino’s Legends Theater (14500 Central SW) on Friday, Sept 29. Before I send you off to this show for explicitly educational purposes, I must admit that, in high school, I loathed Thorogood and his brand of beer-swilling boogie-rock. But after I had the opportunity to hear the man handle his guitar at Popejoy Hall, I had to reconfigure my attitude. Additionally, Thorogood’s done much to keep the work of his predecessors (read: Bo Diddley or the Woolies) alive and kicking. Plus this is the dude who once performed 50 concerts in 50 states in 50 days. Not too shabby. Okay, millennials, I see you out there in Alibi-land rolling your eyes. But I’m a gonna tell you anyway. Put aside your preconceptions and get thee to the casino. It’s for realz rocanrol. All Ages • $29 to $65 • 8pm.
Can afficianados of rock music, especially those terminally tuned into the guitar, find a sense of completion—or gather up similar experiential jewels—by beginning to dig North Indian classical music? I dunno, ask George Harrison. For my part though, I certainly gained much by taking time to listen to Georgie One’s work in this genre as well listening to some of the source material itself when I traveled to the subcontinent for extended stay in the ’90s. Now you can have your turn at this traditionally rewarding, west meets east experience. Sarod masters and brothers Amaan Ali Bangash and Ayaan Ali Bangash perform at the Outpost Performance Space (210 Yale Blvd SE). Transcendent, jangly, droning, slyly melodic and based on musical scales many Americans are unfamiliar with, North Indian classical music offers listeners an elusive path to another place in time and space. Take my advice on this one, listeners: Just go for Shiva’s sake, go! All Ages • $15 to $20 • 7:30pm
Amaan Ali Bangash and Ayaan Ali Bangash in concert
If you haven’t ever been mesmerized, molded and met with a curiously mad experience involving the Melvins, then I do not know what the fuck you are waiting for. Hell, I’m not even going to tell you all what they are really about, since you already ought to know. Anyway, Melvins, a band from the dark reaches of the legendary Pacific Northwest comprised chiefly of King Buzzo and Dale Crover—and lately including former Red Kross guitarist Steven Shane McDonald—have a goddamned gig at Launchpad (618 Central NW) on Monday, Oct. 2. I sure as hell hope you will go and say what’s up to these high priests of our country’s rocanrol underground. They’ll probably say hi right back, but may also flip you off in the process. It’s okay, remember it is the Melvins we’re talking about here. Post metal doomgaze magicians Spotlights open. You can see them all in action at about 9pm, for just a Jackson, a 21+ ID and a brain that you are willing to leave behind forever afterwards.