Stream the Crawler podcast for June 19-26! Barnaby spins the column with music clips, extra tips, and more!
The U.S. men’s soccer team plays Portugal at 3p on the big screen at Whistle Stop Sunday. As I type this we’re still a few days away from their opener against Ghana’s Black Stars, but from what I’ve seen of the 2014 tune-up matches (three wins!) and the Brazil-hosted Cup so far, if the ref can keep the whistle out of his mouth, the U.S. has as good a chance as any team in the tournament. I know, I’m a homer, but I’m also for Mexico and Italy and Holland, so I’m pretty much covered to enjoy most of, if not the whole shebang.... After the match, head over to Normal Heights where Birmingham, Alabama’s raucous Southern rocker Lee Bains III and his Glory Fires light up Soda Bar with their new deal, Dereconstructed, a mixed bag of big dumb (if totally enjoyable) barroom rock songs and intelligent (and equally enjoyable) plaints about what it means to be a modern Southerner. You can check out the title track on this week’s podcast. Local indie-rock act Oh, Spirit opens the show.... Else: Scranton, PA punks the Menzingers are out to tout their very well received Rented World record. They play the all-ages Irenic in North Park after Lemuria...while Argentine singer-songwriter Federico Aubelle delivers this year’s CD, Five, to Casbah after L.A.’s dark R&B artiste Gallant.
The Monday mentionable’d be Spanish Gold at Soda Bar. The “groovy yet muscular” super-trio features drummer Patrick Hallahan (My Morning Jacket), guitarist Adrian Quesada (Grupo Fantasma), and guitarist/singer Dante Schwebel (Hacienda), touring in support of this year’s critical hit South of Nowhere, a keys-heavy collection that Schwebel tells Paste magazine, “[is] a nod to Michael Jackson, Dr. Dre, Madonna, the Beastie Boys, and Tom Petty, all with a Texas bordertown setting,” Nashville rock-roll quartet Clear Plastic Masks on first.
The brothers Bird, Caleb and Ashton, are the heavy, happy duo Tweak Bird, which lands at Soda Bar Tuesday night behind their brand new record, Any Ol Way. Take a hit of its stinking, sticky lead single “Greens” on this week’s pod. Gloomsday and Gods of Science are also on the bill.... While ’round town, clubby TJ diva Ceci Bastida’s at Casbah...roots-rocker Jackie Greene (Black Crowes) plays Belly Up...and blues-rock supergroup Winery Dogs take the Ramona Mainstage.
Portlandian punk trio the Thermals heat up Casbah after Barbarians and Soft Lions. Making waves in indie world with 2006’s The Body, the Blood, the Machine (not a desert-island disc, but still one of my all-time faves), the Thermals have been sonic constants, serving a steady diet of consistently tasty punk-pop platters. They killit onstage too, making this your humpnight gig to get to.... If you miss the door in Middletown, though, post-hippie chillwavers Pure X play the Hideout...while the Lollipop Records Tour stops right up the road at Soda Bar, featuring, from the Nuggets stacks, garage-rock throwback acts Mystic Braves, Corners, Burning Palms, and Electric Magpie.