If the people’s hip-hop duo Run the Jewels (El-P and Killer Mike) is a march on the Mall in DC, then Hail Mary Mallon, featuring indie-rap duo Aesop Rock and Rob Sonic, is a march on the mall in Anytown, U.S.A. And I’m willing to bet that march is through the food court for some munchies and then on to the video arcade. As far as hip-hop odd couples go (see the aforementioned Run the Jewels), Aesop and Sonic aren’t such strange bedfellows, both coming from the old Def Jux stable, and it’s a rare Rob Sonic read that doesn’t compare his sides to Aesop’s psych beats and head-trippy spits. The pair play the Irenic behind their latest, Bestiary, which dropped in November and I have not yet heard, but if it’s got the gabby gift and warped-vinyl style of their debut, Are You Gonna Eat That?, you better measure your head before stepping into the Irenic Thursday night.... From the “Punk Wing” of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the “Young, Fast, Scientific” Dictators NYC will stack ’em at Brick by Brick behind Dictators refresher Faster...Louder — The Dictators’ Best 1975–2001. If you prefer your punk with more rock than shock (think Stooges, MC5), then get this set in your earholes and head out to the Bay Park bar, where L.A. greats Motor666 and our own hardcore hits Authentic Sellout and Sculpins will get a pit spinning.... Best of the rest around town finds Olympia punk trio RVIVR headlining sets by hardcore border bands Western Settings and DFMK at Til-Two...the Nickel Creeky singer/songer Sean Watkins splits a bill at Casbah with solo folkie Lauren Shera...and West Coast hip-hop pioneer Too Short’s at Porter’s Pub at UCSD.
From Flint, Michigan, and the bad-ass Bloodshot label stable, honky-tonk heavies Whitey Morgan & the 78’s play Casbah behind their brand-spanking new Born, Raised, & Live From Flint, which I’m guessing would be a pretty good preview of what to expect after Jake Loban and Joe Fletcher warm the stage at the Middletown mainstay.... Up in the Heights: Soda Bar sets up indie-rock Canada band Hooded Fang, whose latest, Gravez, leaves the dance floor for something heavier, according to Allmusic, which says their latest has a “raw-and-ready sound that threatens to overload circuits and frazzle speakers.” We like that. And we really like local openers Flaggs and Splavender...for a change of scenery and soundery, head over to the Hideout, where local psych-n-soul five piece Amerikan Bear headlines sets by Loom and the Burden...alt-rock acts Bangladesh and Marqay split a bill at Seven Grand in North Park...from Long Beach, acoustic pop-punk duo This Wild Life hits House of Blues behind last year’s well-received Clouded CD...eerie industrial-metal heads Squirrely Arts take the stage at Brick by Brick...while “Mr. Telecaster,” the Grammy-winning country-blues guitarist Albert Lee, slings his thing at Ramona Mainstage.
With their inclusion on the new British comp Millions Like Us — The Story of the Mod Revival, the revived power-pop band Manual Scan will cram into Record City in Hillcrest for a 2 p.m. instore. Frontman Bart Mendoza, a frequent Reader contributor, also penned the new Tim Pyles/Loudspeaker intro you’re hearing on 91X, which was played/recorded by Manual Scan. Maybe the Scanners got comfy in the studio and’ve got something more in the works.... Then it’s resurrection Saturday at Casbah as “sludgy SoCal punks” Olivelawn (featuring the San Diego supergroup line-up of singer Mike Olson, Fluf’s Otis “O” Bartholomew on guitar and Jonny Donhowe on bass, and Eddie Glass of Fu Manchu on drums) headline sets by the scariest band on the planet, Deadbolt, and that two-headed rock-roll hydra from L.A., White Murder. But that’s not all, Crawler follower, meet me in the Atari Lounge between sets where — you sitting down? — Uncle Joe’s Big Ol’ fucking Driver plugs into the back bar for a couple of wallbangers.... If you miss the door in Middletown, still lots of shizz with fizz around town, as Bauhaus/Love & Rockets bassist David J plays the Hideout after sepia-toned folkies Midnight Pine...Brick by Brick bills sludge-metal duo Jucifer with our own industrial-grade noisemaker Author & Punisher...melodic hardcore burners Ignite light up the Soda...bomp-n-stomp blues rocker Chango Rey’s at Til-Two...while that natty funk-n-soul band Stevie & the Hi-Staxx will be tearing it up at Seven Grand.
Follow the Crawler into next week.