Punch-drunk poet Phil Alvin brings his barroom-rocking Blasters to Soda Bar Thursday night. Alvin and his younger brother Dave gave L.A. a taste of American Music in the early ’80s, a record that pricked ears for its punk’d spit and grit on “pre-war” blues and country roots music. When Downey Dave left the group to pursue a career as leader of Guilty Men, Phil took the time to earn a PhD in math and artificial intelligence. So, yeah, his re-formed Blasters are wicked smaht. Check the proof in the puddin’ of 2012’s Fun on Saturday Night, a trad blues-rock triumph nodding to cats such as Creedence and Cash, with a dash of that Alvin-branded mariachibilly. With like-minded locals Nena Anderson & the Mules and Rip Carson opening the show, you’re sure to sweat and get your recommended daily allowance of raw roots.... Best of the rest: from L.A., “Balkan prog” six-piece Atomic Ape swings into Til-Two with their brand-spanking new deal, Swarm, under their big hairy arms. They have a bouzoukist and a flugelhornist. Our own sonic experimentalists Innerds and Trash Axis open the show...rust-belt punk quartet the Menzingers will play the Ché Café behind their critical hit On the Impossible Past. That throwback set garnered an A-rated 93 from the very mathematical metacritic and was named record of the year by the experts at absolutepunk.net and punknews.org. Now on the back of Epitaph, the Menzingers’ stock is on the rise. Off with Their Heads, Broadway Calls, and Days of Light Gravity up first...Nashville-via-Brooklyn indie-pop five-piece Wild Cub plays from their debut Youth across campus at the Loft...while up at Belly Up, the Dave Good Of Noted Wood Brothers (as in Medeski, Martin &...) take the Solana Beach stage in support of their trilling Americana set The Muse.
Sooo, y’know by now that Rocket from the Crypt, closing out the monthlong run of 25-year anniversary shows at the Casbah, sold that sucker out in about a minute. No ticket? No problem, Til-Two’s got you covered, as Mighty Manfred of the Woggles brings his band the Magnificent to the City Heights hot spot Friday night. These seven Hollywood rock-scene vets specialize in “skull-slamming rhythm and blues with a show so savage it’s been banned in 13 states.” And with our own psychedelic rock-rollers the Loons opening the show and DJ Tony the Tyger spinning ’round sets, go get your retro jones sated.... Brooklyn bassist/drummer/singer/strummer Frankie Rose (Dum Dum Girls, Vivian Girls) is at the Soda Bar behind her third solo set (and first for Fat Possum), Herein Wild, by all accounts a misfit sequel to her stellar Interstellar — Ms. Rose has left the garage. Dream Boys, Soft Lions, and DJ Mario Orduno round it out.... Need a little more roll in your soul, skate-punk god squad MxPx plays the Irenic with old-school Chicagoans Allister and Kris Roe of the Ataris.... Black Hippy Herbert Anthony Stevens IV, better known as Ab-Soul, will rock the mic at Porter’s Pub on the heels of his first Grammy nomination (Album of the Year for his part in Macklemore’s The Heist).... And out at the casinos there’s a buncha good bets for the classic-rock radio set, as Blue Öyster Cult hits Sycuan, Foreigner’s at Harrah’s, and Wilson Phillips plays Pala.
Woodsist label wunderkind Kevin Morby of indie hits Woods and the Babies plays Soda Bar behind his solo debut Harlem River, a folk-inflected letter to New York City as he closes out that chapter of his life for the sunny climes of L.A. Lend an ear to album opener “Miles, Miles, Miles,” and then go welcome Mr. Morby to Southern California, because with English folk-pop chanteuse Cate Le Bon headlining the show and our own globby fuzz-rock goodness Octa#Grape filling the bill, these’d be the sets to see Saturday night.... Else: Operation:Mindblow’s 5th annual Winter’s Womb psych-rock show at Til-Two features SanFran band Glitter Wizard, ’70s-style jam band Astra, and Joy off-shoot Artifact...horror-punk ’Zonies Calabrese visit the Ken Club with similar-sounding Stellar Corpses, Blackjackits, and Zombie Barbie...from Athens, GA, psychedelic-country sextet Futurebirds land at the Griffin behind their first Fat Possum set, Baba Yaga. Recommended for fans of the Drive-By Truckers brand...right ’round the bend, O.C. skate-punk perennials Guttermouth join San Antone’s mojado punks Piñata Protest as well as our own O’side Sound System and them drunken punkin’ idiots D.P.I. for a mosh-filled bill at Brick by Brick...and Irish alt-rock act Ash drifts into Casbah with a 20-year cache of gold and platinum platters, including their first proper, the Star Wars–referencing 1977, and one of the 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die. I heard it. Guess I’m good to go.
Follow the Crawler into next week.