They're two to three times pricier than a show at the Sunshine, but don't let sticker shock keep you from experiencing New Mexico's independent music festivals. You can get passes to two of the best in the West at an attractive discount—but you've got to buy them within the next two weeks.
Star Tattoo blows out the candles on seven years in the pain-for-pleasure biz this Saturday, May 31. Starting at 3 p.m., there'll be free cheese from Little Anita's, crawfish from Copeland's and beer-soaked rawk from eight bands at Elliot's (Alameda and Coors Bypass). It's the Star kids' way of saying, "You could have picked any of Albuquerque's 373 tattoo parlors to give you ass antlers, but you chose us. Thank you." No, Star Tattoo. Thank you. (LM)
A band on the verge of adulthood comes home for a backyard fundraiser
By Simon McCormack
He was barely out of his teen years, but Beirut's Paul Collins recognized a budding star. "The first time I heard Zach [Condon] sing, I knew he was going to be more than just a local musician," Collins says. "I've never seen someone play where I just knew they were going to be something amazing."
Arm's Way only fails when compared to Islands' debut. Return to the Sea was a multi-genre fever dream of bright melodies juxtaposed with death-themed lyrics. Arm's Way is a stellar record in its own right. Singer-songwriter and Unicorns founder Nick Thorburn is still able to conceive precise guitar rock interrupted at just the right times with string interludes or steel drum jam-outs. But Arm's Way is darker and almost gothic compared to Return, and most of its tracks follow a simpler path to where they're going. Islands' directionally obscure endeavors are few and far between on the new release, and that was part of the band's initial charm. (SM)
Drug Church • alternative, hardcore punk • The Coma Recovery • metal • Boyfriend Armada
By August March
Hey man, do you, like, wanna go to drug church? How's does Coma Recovery suit you after a night out and is there a Boyfriend Armada awaiting you in the stormy waters of the Rio Grande? Ask yourself these and other relevant questions on Thursday, May 25, when the fine folks over at ye olde Launchpad bring some of the bestest rocanrol music—made by some of the most archly named musical units in Satan's legion—to our humble, though not quite innocent little town by the river. Get ready to mosh until you melt down when the aforementioned Drug Church, a hardcore quintet from Nueva York, hit the stage. They'll be joined in brutal, sonic ritual by two of this town's loudest and louchest acts, the Coma Recovery and Boyfriend Armada, of course. It'll be fun and maybe you'll even have a bruise or broken bone to show off afterwards … you know, after your parents trundle off to bed and Snapchat is getting hot. This 13+ show is only $8; that should hopefully help the Dark Lord's recruitment efforts for the evening—it begins at 8pm, by the way.
Wiggle on over to Downtown this Friday, May 26, to see the extraordinary, world-class electro house musician, record producer, DJ and music executive, Steve Aoki at Downtown's Memorial Day Weekend Block Party. The booty bumpin' party will be held in the parking lot across from the Historic El Rey Theater (technically at Park It Place) and festivities get goin' at 6pm and end at 11pm. General admission costs $49 and VIP tickets (which include a commemorative lanyard, express entry, and access to the VIP area with the best view) cost $83. Supporting the Grammy-nominated DJ are notable musicians in their own right, Slushii, Ookay and K?D.