Naomi Punk, PC Worship, Maria Chavez
Tuesday February 21, 7 pm to 11 pm at the Park Church Co-Op: $12
If this one’s news to you, throw down your laptop (yeah, like, on the ground), pick up your feet and hurry get a move on– this one starts, like, now.
Attraction numero uno is an Olympia-based band called Naomi Punk, returning from a bitty recording hiatus, presumably with an album in the works. And their name doth not betray– Punk’s stripped-down, dusty-beer-can styling tacks a refreshingly chill vibe over garage-rock tradition, which can often veer toward needless broey BS. In other words, these cats put some much-needed “punk” in garage punk.
Which brings us to the next guys in line: PC Worship, Justin Frye‘s shiftshaping, ever morphing troupe of anti-rock (and other times totally pro-rock) psychedelic noise enthusiasts. We’re just gonna go ahead and guess that the band will spend the extent of this show flexing some tracks off their new release, Buried Wish, out February 24. (Check back here for something on that one. Probably.)
And yeah, this music show is happening inside a church, which understandably might be a bit difficult to swallow for those of you still wrestling with religious trauma of some sort. But based on what I’ve heard, you don’t have to worry about any holy-water waterboarding sessions between these hallowed walls, just lots and lots of nasty hymns.
The Pizza Boys, Jim Lucid, The Wants, Shining Mirrors
Wednesday February 22, 8 pm at Alphaville: $8
It’s been a tough week already, starting out with Presidents’ Day and all. So a hump-day pickup is definitely in order, I’d say. Enter The Pizza Boys, who play the fun kind of rock n’ roll that once upon a time rang out from the city’s now-bygone grubby clubs and filthy downtown bars. Of course, the only thing that’s stuck around from grit’s golden era is the stank of pee, which keeps on flowin’ through the gutters as strong as ever, and serves as a humbling reminder that, aren’t we all just bedbugs in the wind?
The Za Boyz–as their most dedicated fans undoubtedly call them–will help you get back to a time when smiling in public was socially acceptable. And, hey, live for the present moment while you’re at it why don’t cha? Grab a $1 slice. Treat yo self. Just try not to choke on a wayward cheese dribble while you’re chanting, “Be here now.”
Horse Lords, The Dreebs, Leila Bordreuil
Thursday February 23, 8 pm at Alphaville: $10
Where have all the weirdos gone? What I’m inclined to say is, the way of the wild horses, that’s where. OK, since I’ve only seen a pack of wild horses once in my life (and they may or may not just have been drug-running horse mules concealing Los Zetas tattoos under their hippie-long manes as they pranced across the Rio Grande)– but usually I take that idiom to mean, approximately, “pretty much dead and gone.” Which makes that a just slightly over-the-top, way too wistful assessment of our most venerable and tremendous Millennial generation and the grip that we have, or rather don’t have, on the cool things that supposedly made all of these grumbling and graying ex-young people so much more edgy and authentic and, and, and… cool. I’m willing to admit this namely because bands like Horse Lords are still around.
These mathy, experimentalish drone dudes have been around the block, and have done so in the absence of lyrics or played-out rock tropes whatever else bands get by on these days, occupying a sound-space continuum located somewhere between Lightning Bolt and Glenn Branca.
I’ll spare you from the band’s self-devotional tome in its entirety, but I will tell you, in their own words, these guys are all about music that’s “chopped and screwed and stomped and smothered and dissolving to bells and then suddenly (as if through a flung-open door) back into some room where Horse Lords is playing at full flight.”
Wait, these horsies fly?
Let’s not get ahead of ourselves here just yet. Up first at the show are some dreamy “dreebswave” sounds courtesy of who else but the The Dreebs. Their muted psych-pop could be the soundtrack to your next psychedelic therapy session, just you wait.
Shadow Band, Pat Noecker, Boon, Olden Yolk, John Markowski
Friday February 24, 8:30 pm at Alphaville: $10
Probably at least everyone can agree with me on this one: Philly friends are always the grooviest. At least it seems that way to us New Yorkers, who are grinding our foreheads into the ground, day after day, presumably until there’s nothing left but brain scum and a lingering sense of barely-holding-it-together panic (aka finally feeling “settled” with 2.5 rad-dad approved kids who picked out their own kid-sized converse and are just the sweetest little things/well-trained enough to know that they can’t go potty all over the designer-furnished brownstone, and an Airbnb that “takes care of itself” when the maid’s not around). Our Philly counterparts are always eating great Vietnamese food that’s just sooo cheap and, like, micro-dosing after work (yeah, even on school nights) and just straight chillin’. How do they do it? Why aren’t we doing it?
Take it from Shadow Band (full disclosure, I know a few of these guys pretty well, as in they are what you might call my friends), Philly is a great place to plant down roots and sprout some art, including a new album, out now on Mexican Summer. And they do it all without an industrious “maker” in sight. In Shadow Band’s case, “art” means fully fleshed-out psychedelic rock (yeah, they’re deserving of the entire word, not just some “psych” short stick, ok?), relayed to the finite world from the beyond by an impressively tight crew of supremely talented musicians. Together, they pull off an orchestral effort that is guaranteed to be way more stimulating than the laser light show you were planning to check out. Skip it, dollface.
Friday February 24, 8 pm at Bizarre Bushwick: $8
One of the easiest ways to spot a new New Yorker is, duh, look for the kid fumbling with their Supreme MetroCard and smiling too much. Save a life by setting them straight. Next time you spot one of these in the wild, creep up behind while they’re Snapchatting a busker and explain that, in fact, subway performers– starving artists who go home to a dingy tenement teeming with their fellow makers, dreamers, and they-said-we-couldn’t-make-it believers, wholly convinced that they are just two dead girlfriends (TB, of course… tragic) away from The Voice– are not exactly the last authentic street musicians around. In fact, they need a permit to play down there with the rats. Earth shattering, am I right?
If you’re not a total sadist who enjoys telling random children that Santa is a fraud, you can go ahead and introduce your newfound friend to the Pinc Louds who, yes, are a busking sort of folk, but they’re also an “imaginary band” with all sorts of skills including writing a musical about “the wonders of eating from the garbage.”
These anti-folk/folk-freak types plan to jam out at Bizarre Bushwick this week in celebration of their new album. And if you ask us, that sounds like a whole lot more fun than lurking around the cold and dank-as-heck Lorimer stop in search of the next Taylor Swift, am I right or am I right?