I dreamed I was in a Hollywood movie...and that I was the star of the movie. War comes to town with a new name, the Lowrider Band. Four of the five surviving L.A. ghetto blasters that brought you “Spill the Wine,” “Cisco Kid,” “Why Can’t We Be Friends,” etcet etcet, including original singer-guitarist Howard Scott, appear at Anthology. They may have lost the rights to the three-letter name (apparently the White House has a patent on it), but these cats are still that damn-fine funk-n-roll band. So, take that pearl!... Around the bend on Kettner, there’ll be a skanky affair at Casbah, featuring L.A. big band See Spot with like-minded locals the Unsteady and the Fabulous Rudies. Formed in 1992, “San Diego’s mutated ska collective” Unsteady hasn’t seen the light in years, but they were one brassy blast back in the day, invoking “bordertown radio-to-jump” to move your shoes.... Up the big hill, at Tin Can Ale House, spook-pop dude John Paul Labno, aka Vegetarian Werewolf, will drop his debut cassette collection The Blood Count Step. Former Grand Ole Partier Labno is a busy-bee multi-instrumentalist with his stinger in Hot Moon and Mr. Tube’s Flying Objects. The Night Rocker splits the Banker’s Hill bill.... Bar Pink wrangles up country skrunks Screamin YeeHaws and Behind the Wagon.
Coupla capital-r Rawk shows in town Friday night, as alt-radio rulers Kings of Leon fill the Cricket and the Steve Miller Band antes up at Pechanga. Kings are kind of like the Steve Miller Band of today. Let’s check back with them in 40 years, though, right? Wrong. Time keeps on slippin’ for Miller, who 40-some-odd years into his career’s got a critical hit with classic R&B covers collection Bingo! Just noticed that Built to Spill opens for Kings of Leon. What the f--k is going on in the world?... Best of the rest: folk-rockin’ bad girl Mary Gauthier will play the AMSD showcase behind her new one, The Foundling...funk’d-up jazz cats Pocket jam ’em in at Bar Pink...the Pete Escovedo Orchestra, featuring Sheila E., Juan, and Peter Michael, checks into Anthology for two nights to celebrate Uncle Pete’s 75th...punk-pop poster boys Lower Definition have a homecoming to headline their No Bummer Summer tour at Soma...Burning of Rome rocks the Casbah with Black Hondo...and Ché Café stages Sleeping Peep Kenseth Thibideau with Nothingful and Soul-Junk. Where’ve those dudes been?
Garage-pop trio Harlem hits Rumble San Diego at Bar Pink this week. Caught the Austin-based act at Casbah a couple months back because I wanted to get my hands on their home-spun Free Drugs ;-). (I’m not winkin’ at ya, that’s part of the record title, hophead.) Anyway, co-front guy Michael Coomers (he switches off drums, guitar, and singing with Curt O’Mara) tells me the discs are in a box by the door, “Leave whatever you can, preferably foldin’ money.” It’s a great listen, but it isn’t a patch on this year’s Matador debut Hippies, which runs punk’d R&B through a taffy-pulling machine for some chewy-sweet poppy treats. There were, like, eight people at the Casbah gig, I expect them and all their friends and anyone who’s read Harlem's press to fill this one fast. These guys kill it live, even for an audience of eight.... Else: Harrah’s casino has a good bet with classic-rock radio staples Yes and Peter Frampton. (Did you catch Brizz’s rock-nostalgic “T.G.I.F.” last week? It’s where the funny is: sandiegoreader.com/news/2010/jun/30/tgif-yes-and-frampton/).... Home-grown barroom rockers Joey Harris and the Mentals will light it up at P.B. mainstay Tiki House.... Downtown, ya got ’60s singles singer, the o-riginal “Oogum Boogum” man, Brenton Wood at 4th&B...and Donkeys and Red Pony Clock clopping into Casbah.... While uptown, it’s experimental rockers SecretFunClub at Radio Room with L.A. hardcores It’s Casual...and Danish rockers Foreign Resort check into Ruby Room with Dirty Legs and Dream Tiger.
Bar Pink has got the gig to get to Sunday night, too, with Brooklyn psych-poppers Golden Triangle. Sure to be the sexiest, sweatiest set of the week, anyway, according to contributor Ms. Leary: sandiegoreader.com/news/2010/feb/24/double-jointer/. Didn’t realize former El Cajoné/GoGoGo guy Jay High was the hippie-wristed cat whacking the traps on GT’s wicked new disc Double Jointer till Stampone wrote me from Philly saying he had a “Blurt” interview with Jay for me, which he never sent, the d-bag.... Whatever. If you miss the door in North Park, SanFran pop-rock band Bad Astronaut with Joey Cape will land at Casbah after In the Red’s Mike Hale does his solo acoustic thang.
Hungry Monday has schizo instrumentalists the Non from Oklahoma joining folksy experimentalist Wols from Texas at Tin Can Ale House...and Casbah’s Anti-Monday thing, with multi-instrumentalist Ilan Rubin’s group — himself — the New Regime. His bio says he played with Nine Inch Nails once. Stop rolling your eyes.
Hous-town’s rapid-fire rapper Lil’ Flip rolls up on 4th&B Tuesday behind his new t’do Ahead of My Time.... And Casbah’s waging Drug Wars with Sleep Lady, who play “the soundtrack you never heard to a movie that was never made about people you don’t care about.” Huh.
You ready to dance? I mean, Are you ready to dance?! Shine up your shoes and grease your knees, as Brooklyn-based Afro-beat big band Antibalas plays Casbah with their friends and neighbors the Sway Machinery. Antibalas is touring in support of the rerelease of their 2004 critical hit Who Is This America?, a platter of Fela-style grooves infused with some funky chunky salsa. Mmm.... Other hump-night highlights include techno show La Roux at 4th&B. Since last year’s smash s/t debut, the London-based synth-pop duo haven’t seen home.... L.A.’s “regional-Mexican” electro-pop trio Signals reaches Bar Pink behind their new seven-inch “Silverfish”/”What Dreams.” Cool sides, like, the Cars covered in queso, guac, and hot sauce.... Utter mentionables: Soda Bar sets up ex–Von Bondies the Vicious Guns with Beat Panther...and the Ché plays at poetry, pairing psych-folkies Big Tree and the Shade.
— Barnaby Monk