Monday July 25, 8 pm at The Glove: $7.
If you’re the proud owner of even half a heart, chances are that you’ve been feeling pretty sympathetic for those back-broken rust belters living in Cleveland, a population that’s shown more than a bit of plucky resilience in the face of economic desertification and industrial decline and governor who briefly campaigned for Pres on a platform that can only be characterized as LOL WTF. But the arrival of the Republican National Convention today just piles on the suffering– thanks to the blonde ambition of everyone’s favorite giant-human-mouth with its own reality TV show.
You know who we’re talking about– that dude who, for a time, had the rare ability to spew nonsense that sounded exactly like a character out of Cormac McCarthy’s most brutal novel (which is saying a lot…), Blood Meridian. By now, however, this he-who-must-not-be-named has repeatedly demonstrated such a particular knack for spewing hateful gobbledygook and consequently getting everyone all riled up about un-facts, that he’s graduated to a Nicolae Ceausescu level of moral decay well beyond the worst imaginings that even Mr. McCarthy could yarn out (the Judge’s fashion choices– anyone?). I could make a comparison to someone else, but that’s exactly what this Candidate For Carnage would want me to say. So I’ll just let you say it. In your head. To yourself. Over and over again till he disappears. Please. Help.
But back to those hardworking Clevelanders– let’s show them they’re not alone and come out in support of a show happening next Monday at the Glove that’s blessed with two Cleveland-based artists who are gonna need the emotional equivalent of an extra-large ice cream cone to the face. Lend a hand in stopping the madness, y’all.
Machine Listener is an outfit outta Cleveland whose sound ranges from spooky ambient– the kind of stuff that you’d hear at the outer edges of a sci-fi psychological-horror film– to crushing psychedelic explorations of the Great Beyond. It’s just the ticket to disappear from existence for a moment. (Um, still please stay relatively #woke so you won’t reemerge from the polling station some day very soon to find that everyone’s given up and dyed their hair Barbie-doll blonde, among other horrors.)
Also from Cleveland is Matthew Ryals and his ethereal minimal-electronic compositions. They’re the sonic equivalent of a long, lonely bike ride. And because Cleveland can’t do this alone, the two Ohioans will be joined by Frank Hurricane, that super prolific purveyor of “Spiritual Mountain Psychedelic Gangsta Folk” sounds. There’s also Xuan Rong, a local pop singer/ producer behind some seriously dark electronic mish-mashing that brings together trap, manic techno, cartoon character babbling, even some drum-line bits, and Skeleton Zoo, a jazzy, experimental, a cross-pollination that bills itself as “80 percent Tribal, 15 percent Electrons, 5 percent Tweezers,” which somehow sounds about right.
Putaria Maxima: MC Bin Laden, Total Freedom, Virgil Abloh, Asmara, Venus X, Divine Council, False Witness
Thursday, July 21, 10 pm to 4 am at Aviv: $15 early bird (through Tuesday July 19)/ $20 snooze-lose.
For all you #asthmatics like myself out there, great news! Aviv says you can’t smoke cigs inside anymore, so I guess we’ll just have to do our obnoxious wheezing elsewhere for a change. The change also means that the only smoke we’re liable to find at the Ghe20G0th1k party will be ambient stuff that billows out from a fog machine. Nice! And if that’s something you can’t handle, well, I hate to inform you but maybe it’s time you get outta the #coolpool.
Be aware, that if you do depart from the aforementioned #coolpool, you’ll be missing out on some majorly sick happenings like MC Bin Laden‘s appearance. There’s no guarantee you’ll be able to understand what the Brazilian rapper’s saying, exactly, but judging by his hit “Bololo Haha,” which currently has nearly 14 million views on YouTube, it’s pretty universal stuff anyway. MoMA Ps1 seems to agree– they cast MC Bin Laden in their July 23 Warm Up lineup.
Born and raised in São Paulo, the MC (born Jefferson Cristian dos Santos de Lima) grew up poor, despite the epic name that’s fitting of a duke lording over a few vineyards somewhere in the 1600s. And according to his Brazilian Wikipedia page (which doesn’t come through all that well using Google Translate, but we gave it a shot), the MC survived on nothing but McDonald’s for a time. He’s now a wildly popular figure in Brazil, having shot to some friggin’ serious level of fame (Brazil’s got a lot of people, guys), with his 2015 hit “Tá Tranquilo, Tá Favorável” (Everything’s Fine, Everything’s Cool), which utilizes traditional Brazilian drums as much as it taps the trademark Facebook message ting, and comes standard with a video wherein we get to watch the MC jiggle, with great confidence, across a luscious Brazilian beach, shaking what his mama and McDonald’s (presumably) gave him, while a yin yang necklace bounces to and fro across his chest. You can’t possibly blame him for all this blissful boing-boing– this is catchy stuff.
The rest of the lineup, a Ghe20G0th1k production, is one to reckon with too– featuring a slew of excellent producers like Miami’s Total Freedom whose dance-music mission Resident Advisor described as “weird, confrontational, and totally unique,” and all of them will be led by the inimitable Venus X, Ghe20G0th1k’s founding empress. Please remember that all of this will take place inside the tiny confines of Aviv (!), which is guaranteed to be crazy/sexy/cool, so don’t miss it.
Big Freedia, Cakes Da Killa
Tuesday, July 19, 8 pm at Baby’s All Right: $3 with RSVP, $10 without.
Sometimes it’s hard to admit and I’ve already done it once, so I won’t get too gushy about this again, but Red Bull’s music happenings are not to be taken lightly. That’s especially true when they’re AfroPunk-curated affairs. And seeing as, in order to get into this show for just $3, you won’t have to do much more than sign away your email to occasional promotional stuff (just hit filter: spam or something if it bothers you that much), you have actually zero excuses not to make it out to the Big Freedia/ Cakes Da Killa show happening tonight at Baby’s All Right. Mid-week, shmidweek– it’s summer time, and legit everything about this event is amazing.
At this show, it’s all about the queer/gender-binary smashing hip-hop artists. First up is Big Freedia, the New Orleans bounce legend who’s getting too busy with her hit TV show, promoting other musicians, and sharing her size XXXL-size personality with the world to do enough live music performances to satisfy our urges. Rareness, y’all!
And then there’s Cakes Da Killa, the super talented and super young 25-year-old rapper from New York who’s unabashedly delivering some of the illest lines around, laid out over some of the weirder and party-ist of tracks that hip-hop has going for it today (and hey, you don’t have to look far at all to find cool shit happening in the genre right now– but Cakes is totally up-top). If you’re not familiar, go ahead and take a look-see at what’s on offer from the rapper who’s fond of reminding us that he’s “Ya Man’s Wet Dream.” And my prayers are with you if you don’t realize right away that you better not dare cross Cakes, the Queen of Lizard-Tongued Sass– he’s totally liable to slap a bitch for nothing more than a sideways glance.