It’s the first week to get back out there and prove you’re an actual human being, not a ghost or a witch or even Sexy Donald Trump. Take off your mask and get back into the swing of things with two record release shows, a band of metal dads, and enough Trip Metal to make you quit Instagram forever. Find your trip outta here below.
Wolf Eyes Record Release with Yellow Eyes, Dreamcrusher
Saturday, Nov. 7, 8 pm at Trans-Pecos: $13 – $15
Mysterious Michigan trip metal band Wolf Eyes have been revving their engines for the arrival of their new album, I Am A Problem: Mind in Pieces (Third Man Records). LOL this band is not to be confused with Lazy Eyes— something that’s apparently easier to do than one might ever believe. Tired eyes can inflict great harm, you see. Onward… To prove just how unbridled they are, the band made use of an Instagram-takeover opportunity to make fun of dad (aka Jack White, the big boss man over at Third Man) and troll the record label’s apparently humorless bunch of followers by uploading some deeply offensive posts like this Woody “GG” Allen, a rather flattering likeness of one benevolent DJ Trump, and an alert for a show happening at a lil’ music co-op in Ann Arbor. Apparently a good chunk of disapproving followers had never heard of Wolf Eyes, let alone Arbor Vitae. People were actually, hilariously pissed.
Heavens! Some of these pearl clutchers even tried to tattle on Wolf Eyes by tagging Jack White and being all, “If this is a TMR artist then I’m embarrassed.” About 1,000 or so people demonstrated their incurable constipation (which leads to irritability and intolerance of ungrateful “crusty punks [who] think they’re interesting”) by unfollowing Third Man. Wow guys, unfollowing is a pretty brutal response to something called “humor.” Guessing you taught those punks a serious lesson. Then again, it seems Jack White reaped some pretty sick benefits from Nate Young’s lil amp update, so cool it with the social media retaliation.
Anyway, Wolf Eyes’ Instagram antics are only mildly entertaining compared to the band’s live set which– need we even tell you?– is really trippy and really metal. Who knows, maybe Woody Allin / GG Allen will make a cameo appearance at the show? There’s one thing we do know for sure, however, and that’s the rest of the lineup. Two super sick acts from NYC are joining the show: Dreamcrusher (self-described “nihilist queer revolt music” that threatens to flatten your ear drums into useless, floppy pool noodles– you can sort of get a feel for this artist’s live set right over here) and Yellow Tears (another noise outfit with a special thing for piss).
Deafheaven, Envy, Tribulation
Thursday, Nov. 5, 9 pm at Webster Hall: $20
Black metal can sometimes seem monotonous or old hat. I mean, in a lot of ways the sub-genre hasn’t changed much since the ’90s. But Deafheaven offer a bit of a fresher sound. Don’t fret coz you’ve still got the endearingly cheesy operatic buildups, the hissy vocals, the amphetamine-fast double bass flutters. But there are some sonic outliers, too: a notably melodic guitar that unwaveringly launches into solos that soar above everything else, and even brief excursions into shoegaze territory. There’s a good chance you’ll scream, “What is happening here?!” But go ahead, no one will be able to hear you over the pummeling sound.
Envy is all about a looser, nearly punk-informed (emphasis on nearly) Japanese prog-metal, another sound that defies what maybe you thought you knew about metal. There are moments where they seem to throw structure and typical constraints to the wind, only to settle back down to Earth– something they always do, after all this is metal music we’re talking about.
And because a metal show always seems to need a Dad figure to bring the wayward, boundary-pushing sons back into line, Tribulation (death metal from Sweden) is sliding in to crack a beer, hole up on the couch, and watch the kids play pretend. But instead of Dad wearing a college sweatshirt and a pair of aviators, he’s got this cool floor-length black robe your mom picked up for him at Kohl’s (he’s obligated to wear it, or she’s obligated to dump out his beer) and some leftover face paint from last Halloween. He may be a goof sometimes, but Dad really knows his classic death metal sound better than anyone.
Stove, Dog Island, Vagabon, Glueboy, Tessa Skara
Friday Nov. 6th, 8 pm at the Silent Barn: $8
Stove‘s sound is informed as much by Beat Happening’s Calvin Johnson as it is by Pavement, which results in kind of a dramatic swing, and the band manages this not just through Steve Hartlett’s impressive vacillation between baritone gurgles and angelic soprano squeaks, but also through a charming twang that co-exists alongside simple pop-isms. Aw.
Dog Island is apparently a newish outfit, so much so that they don’t even appear to have an interweb existence yet. Wow, talk about fresh meat. For a hint of what you can expect from their set, sop up some Japanese Breakfast, who share some bandmates with Dog Island. They’re a real squeaky dream pop outfit that we imagine burns incense and bake cupcakes to place at their very own Ariel Pink altar.
If earnest power pop punk is your thing, then boy oh boy is Glueboy the band for you. We’re super hoping their name is a reference to huffing glue, because newsflash: glue sniffing isn’t sad at all, it’s maybe one of the most hilarious behaviors a human being can engage in.
And in case you never thought such a thing was possible, this show brings comedy and bands together into not-at-all-Jimmy-Fallon like fusion of music and chuckles. Tessa Skara a standup comedian from Pop Roulette is gonna do her very distinguished routine thing before all these music kids start writhing around like pomeranian pups on acid, as they are want to do.
Coke Weed, Prince Rupert’s Drops, Savants, Steep Leans
Sunday, Nov. 8, 8 pm at Baby’s All Right: $8 – $10
In case you don’t get enough Wolf Eyes in you on Saturday, that’s too bad because I don’t think they plan to play again this weekend. BUT there’s at least one more record release party happening, which is excellent news if for some reason that’s what compels you to go to a show. (Apparently bookers’ logic goes something like “record releases will entice the naysayers and early-to-bed crowd to come out because how else do you grip a record these days sheesh.”)
But actually, Coke Weed is pretty cool despite not being Wolf Eyes, exactly, and anyway Sunday’s the perfect day for a groovy, benzo-soaked slow-dance party thanks to this band’s commitment to invoking a psyched-out disco funk revival and hypnotic art pop. At this point in the weekend you’re only really capable of hip-swaying and half-smiles anyway. The party’s over, or maybe it never is.
On the occasion of the release of their new record Mary Weaver, a reference to either marijuana or the woman who spent a long-ass time in jail after being wrongly accused of inflicting shaken baby syndrome on the kid she was babysitting (rude, but she didn’t actually do it– so, not rude). In a perfect world, Mary Weaver acknowledges both jazz grass and our twisted justice system.
Prince Rupert’s Drops represent a blessed trend in indie rock: tripping back to ’90s college rock. It’s a nice change from overly laptop-ified rock that’s been beaten so hard by Garage Band or whatever the kids use these days until it sounds like every car commercial you’ve ever heard. Bless this simplified, chill yet not-anesthetized return to indie roots without being cheesy or unbearably derivative.
Speaking of trips, Savants engage in an unabashed ’60s time warp back to the Monks and the 13th Floor Elevators. It’s all bongos and weed before there were crystals and mounds of industrial-strength THC globs on the stuff, back when it was actually much like a weed. There’s nothing groundbreaking happening here, but it’s still super duper fun. I’d say the same goes for Steep Leans— it’s pleasant driving music and a kind of songwriting any love-worn bbs can lean on.