She’s a little bit folkie, and he’s a little bit roots ’n’ roll. Los Angeleno siblings Rachel and Rob Kolar and the glam-folk circus known as He’s My Brother She’s My Sister last year dropped their Park the Van debut Nobody Dances in This Town. Well, nobody except Lauren Brown, the bass-drumming tap-dancer — no kidding, she turns a bass drum on its side and dances on it — who keeps this toe-tapping show buoyant, joyful. The record crackles with old-timey production and scans from rockabilly to rustic Americana to twist-and-shout pop that’s been described as “a time machine of sound.” All aboard at Casbah after Kera & the Lesbians and Jenny O....
Afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti’s London-based, sax-bapping and singing son Femi Kuti and his funk’d-up band, Positive Force, will be at Belly Up behind their latest, No Place for My Dream. With Wolfgang Von Cope, featuring Juju Namjai, these sets are worldbeat dance jams that’ll connect your hips and your heart.... And Ché Café at UCSD stages Folk Yes Fest, featuring SanFran string band the Parmesans and San Diego’s bluegrass punks Sledding with Tigers. Midnight Parade, Bogsy & the Argonauts, Jon Maurer, and Jonathan Barefoot round out this riot of acoustic rockers.
LOUD and proud locals Joy, Harsh Toke, and Primitive Noyes take the stage at Tin Can Ale House. Shred-rock cave punks Joy have a better-than-seven-minute jam called “Save My Soul” up on YouTube, so go take the taste guaranteed to melt your face. Funnily enough, these are three bands I was meaning to see in 2013 — birds, stone — thank you, Tin Can.... Miss the door in Bankers Hill, bomb Laurel to Casbah, where Burning of Rome, Nervous Wreckords, New Kinetics, and Okapi Sun fill a locals-only bill at the Middletown mainstay.... Else: punk-rawkers Oddball and the Natives join forces to take down the Shakedown on Midway...Badd Co. and ZZ Too ape classic-rockers at Brick by Brick in Bay Park...and Stevie Harris and his soulful “dance devastation” the Styletones funk up Bar Pink in North Park.
Saturday is STACKED, as powerhouse soul band the Magnificent (feat. members of the Woggles and the Bellrays) tear into Tower Bar after local faves the Baja Bugs...Eleven pulls a pour of Hot Toddies, that all-girl ditty-bop band from the Bay Area...brass-punks the Atom Age — think RFTC — blast off at Soda Bar after Grand Tarantula, Bloody Mary Bastards, and Subsurfer...greazy beat keepers from the O.C., Cadillac Tramps, roll into Casbah after like-minded locals the Creepy Creeps and the Widows...and Gilbert Castellanos kicks off this year’s trio of tributes at 98 Bottles, with a celebration of the works of Nancy Wilson and Cannonball Adderley, featuring local vocalist Melissa Morgan. Keep your eyes/ears peeled for future Back Room bills honoring Thelonious Monk and Dizzy Gillespie.
Chicago-based band Gemini Club will visit the Griffin on Sunday. The indie-tronica three-piece boasts “a specially designed rig that allows for on-the-fly remixing of their own songs, meaning each Gemini Club show is different from the last.” Listening to their EP Here We Sit as I type — clubby, catchy. Check it: geminiclub.fm. Social Club and Foreign Film set the stage.... Outta Barrio Logan, the grass-roots arts collective Roots Factory (therootsfactory.com) celebrates three years of the voodoo that they do at Casbah, with Buyepongo (Los Angeles), Cumbia Machin, Revival, Piracy, Bumbklaatt, Batwings, Odessa Kane, Scatterbrain, and more.... From Long Beach, psych-punk big band Wild Pack of Canaries invades Ché Café with its cross-cultural mash-up of nu-math and tropical pop. Hit up their Souncloud site and check out “Rain Brain.” St. Ranger, the Frights, and Throne are also on the bill.... Across campus, Porter’s Pub is holding the King’s Supper, celebrating Martin Luther King’s birthday with a fundraiser for African-American scholarships. Sassy sax phenom Grace Kelly will provide the entertainment.
Alt-radio staple Muse brings the big gig to town Monday night, when it packs the Valley View Casinorena behind recent chart-smashing Grammy winners The Resistance and The 2nd Law, both of which have vitalized electronic rock with prog-pop hooks and frontman Matt Bellamy’s engaging vocals. Muse wowed the world during the 2012 London summer games with supersonic hit “Survival.” I almost never turn the dial when it comes on the radio. English alt-rock trio Band of Skulls up first.... Best of the rest: psych-surf beast Barbarian continues its Monday residency out at Soda Bar, this week with the Abigails, Idyll Wild, and Golden Beaches for one solid four-course bill of fare...Casbah’s Anti-Monday team tags San Diego’s fuzz-pop faves the Schitzophonics, who will follow Family Wagon, Rusty Maples, and Jupiter...and FM 94/9 is hosting an invite-only after-Muse afterparty that they’re calling “holiday hootenany” at the Griffin, with Beware of Darkness, Hit Dog Hollar, and DJ Keith Sweaty spinning ’round sets. I wasn’t invited. You?
“Coda Reactor is a band from the future, sent back in time to save rock and roll,” reads their bookface page. It’s future primitive, then. Hardcore for my kids, who both dropped their cereal spoons when my laptop speakers started pissing “Brain Rape.” Fans of Danzig, the DKs, and Black Flag, Coda Reactor plugs in at Casbah after Fuzz Bombs and Oddball.... And borderland ska-punk band Eskera joins the Chain, Trash Axis, and Beekeeper out at Tower Bar for a boozeday Tuesday showcase.
The following show was canceled a couple of months back, so I’m just going to plagiarize myself, if that’s cool with you: David Eugene Edwards was the biblical, baritoned bard behind Denver-based big band 16 Horsepower. When that alt-country powerhouse called it quits in ’05, Edwards dedicated himself to turning the Testaments into American-gothic songs as Wovenhand. More teacher than preacher, DEE, armed with a deep, dark croon and driving new quartet, comes off as the Cormac McCarthy of rock ’n’ roll, an Americana Nick Cave, and I don’t use them there comps lightly. A Wovenhand show is like an invitation to incantation, some dark Native American ceremony that’ll either save you or deprave you... Wovenhand’s touring in support of this year’s The Laughing Stalk; hands down, their heaviest set yet, in rock and talk. They’ll be at Soda Bar with our own psyched-out roots-rockers Heart Beat Trail and Octa#Grape for the gig to get to tonight.... Miss the door, there’s a hella buncha hardcore happening nearby at Til-Two, featuring locals Systematic Abuse, Sociopathic, D.E.A., and Nerve Control, and from Nebraska(?!), Relentless Approach. Children of the Korn.
— Barnaby Monk