“I stopped an old man along the way/ Hoping to find some long forgotten words or ancient melodies/ He turned to me as if to say, ‘Hurry boy, it's waiting there for you.’ ”—Africa.
Perhaps you picture Toto—not from the Wizard of Oz, but the band from El Lay, pendejos—when the above lyric floats by you. If you came up with Wild at Heart, that’s two points; good job. Anyway listeners can now add the vaunted second generation new wave band called Weezer to the list of associations that come up when any of the previous aspects of reality are lumped together and handed out by the media.
After a fan implored that one band with that one decent album (it’s blue, yo) to re-record a classic American pop tune—made famous by a band that featured three brothers that were mainly hell bent to outdo the choptastic yacht rocking proclivities of Fagen and Becker—Rivers Cuomo and company did just that. Their fuzzy rendition cleared up a couple of things for me, like mostly cementing the idea that Weezer is decent but they’ll never be a Pixies or Radiohead. Much like their vaunted predecessors, they’ll also remain right outside the orbit that contains the bigger planets, but continue to chase them joyfully anyway.
What does that have to do with this week’s concert line-up? I dunno; maybe you can ask your favorite local band to cover something atypically grand yet vacuous. I don’t recommend it, though. You’re better just going out and listening to the great music that’s playing here in the next few days. Or you can stay home and listen to Countdown to Ecstasy. Your choice.
Silver String Band
courtesy of the artist
On flyers found ’round the Downtown area, it’s advertised as a “Summer Get Down.” Another appropriate word might be hootenanny, which is a reference to the American folk music and dance scene of the late 19th century, appropriated for modern audiences in Califas who wanted to jam to folk music in the early ’60s but didn’t know what to call the subsequent spasmodic sequences. Whatever you wanna call it, they’ll be doing it American-style, roots bared and all, on Friday, June 8. That’s when Silver String Band, The Porter Draw, Dirty Brown Jug Band and The High Desert Playboys will be picking and grinning until oblivion—or 1am the next morning, whichever comes first, at Burque’s premier rock club, Launchpad (618 Central Ave. SW). As you may recall, these bands feature some of the best players in town, including Emily Anslover, the fiddle player for SSB, an outfit that took a number one award away in the folk/Americana category of our yearly BoB music reader’s poll. In addition, the Porter Draw (the inverted, ghostly alter-ego of Lousy Robot) has one of the cleanest, purest, tinged with darkness alt-country sounds in the hood and will play a set. Dirty Brown Jug Band still adheres to a philosophy based in booze, cigarettes, dope and guitar pickin’, so they are worth hearing and dancing to as well. I haven’t heard The High Desert Playboys, but Clark Andrew Libbey fronts this new classic country outfit so I reckon they rock too; they’re fine if you got the time, as I recall. 9pm • $7 • 21+.
Dirty Brown Jug Band: “Road to Nowhere”
courtesy of the artist
For metal heads who like your Plutonic stew to be thick as the sludge on the floor of the kitchen in Hades, have I got news for you. Ufomammut, one of the darkest, most droning and deliriously hypnotic power trios to ever come outta Europe (unless you’re all about that black Norwegian blend, in which case, excuse me) is playing at Sister (407 Central Ave. NW) on Saturday, June 9. Known for esoteric and complex rocanrol music that evokes ancient religious rites and personages while also indulging in the heavy synth sounds abundantly explored by other continental metal and prog bands, Ufomammut is a singular entity. Their serious approach to music and to metal aesthetics should make this a must see show for anyone interested in what the dark frontiers of rock music sound and feel like. New acolytes are encouraged to indulge in masterworks like Lucifer Songs or Ecate but there still should be a sign preceding or framing said experience that reads “Abandon all hope for melody, ye who enter”—except it should be in Italian, just like in the Divine Comedy. Legendary Nueva York experimental psych outfit White Hills open. Their record Frying on This Rock still thrills, six years out. Damn. 9pm • $13 • 21+.
courtesy of the artist
Sleep is playing at Sunshine Theatre (120 Central Ave. NW) on Sunday, June 10. I am telling you that at the beginning of this rant so you will have an idea of how important the whole damn thing is to me. I am convinced that this trio—comprised of Al Cisneros, Matt Pike and Jason Roeder—is one of the most influential rocanrol outfits in the world today, one of the reasons that the genre continues to skate along blithely while the forces of EDM and hip-hop circle about like hungry birds waiting for this trio in particular to drift off past somnolence and into oblivion. That may never happen now that the trio’s new album, The Sciences, has finally dropped. The quintessence of stoner rock taken to an exponential level accessed through communion with the plant spirit dwelling within marijuana, this work has everything. A downtuned bass, druggy drums, meditative vocalizations, winding, trespassing guitars, the bubbling sounds of smoky victory and cannabis-based references to Dune make The Sciences more than a comeback effort. It’s a mind-blown victory lap about how high and far away space really truly is, that can be listened to an infinite amount of times as any one of us circles the sun in the star-strewn emptiness that surrounds the world. Jet City minimalists Bell Witch and Burque’s own brilliant bassist, James Whiton open. Go see this show, ese! 8pm • $20 • 13+.