This week you can catch piano adventures, spacey freaks, free DJ nights, scratchy 1960s garage veterans, Jem's truly outrageous husband, and more. But before all that, pour out a Brass Monkey for fallen brethren and pioneering music-maker Adam Yauch, also known as the Beastie Boys’ MCA.
It’s a loss felt hard. License To Ill, Paul’s Boutique, and Check Your Head, these records appealed to the masses because they were made for the masses; hip-hop built by punks, fun and smart, they were the nasty tracks we spun at high school parties and adrenaline-filled drives to the nearest music venue, speeding out of the ‘burbs with abandon.
It’s cliched, but it seems to take something as dire as a death to reignite a passion. And this past weekend, I’ve seen the flicker of recognition from folks who'd forgotten how much the Beasties, and all innovative music, once meant to them. Once your burly cocktail has been poured, take a moment of silence, and then get back out there, champ.
Here are your must-see Bay Area concerts this week/end:
An equivalent to listening to Denver’s Gauntlet Hair: leap off a glittering cliff into bouncy blue waves and listen to the reverberating vocals of smiling Lisa Frank dolphins slowed down to stoned speed.
With Dana Buoy, Minot
Wed/9, 9pm, $10
Bottom of the Hill
1233 17th St., SF
“Adventure Piano Night”
Is attack-piano a thing? I guess it’s more commonly referred to as “dueling pianos” but this event will feature aggressively talented bands playing mostly solo. No direct showdowns (per say) but lots of punch from buskers extraordinaire the John Brothers Piano Company, experimental maestro Dominique Leone, and more.
With Major Powers & the lo-fi symphony, Sit Kitty Sit
101 Sixth, SF
JD Samson & Men
Last time JD Samson (of Le Tigre) and her danceable pop protest group Men came around these parts, the mustachioed spark plug rallied hard, twisting about a laptop and throwing her spindly hands up to rile a warming crowd as the opening act for CSS. This time, the main stage is gold glittered hers.
With Myles Cooper
Fri/11, 9pm, $14
155 Fell, SF
Push the Feeling: With shortcircles (live)
Woozy, pulsing hip-hop with spacey looping beats and effects, shortcircles has been compared to the following: Clams Casino, Tycho, and the space between Bonobo and Four Tet. Sounds about right.
With Chucha Santamaria y Usted (live), YR SKULL & epicsauce DJs
Fri/11, 9pm, free with Facebook RSVP
424 Haight, SF
Facebook: Push the Feeling
Portland Oreg.’s experimental rock act Ramona Falls is the relatively newer musical branch from Brent Knopf (of Menomena). More delicate, with twinkling keys and dramatic floating strings, debut release Inuit (Barsuk, 2010) could be the soundtrack to a sepia-toned love-lost motion picture. Check new album Prophet (Barsuk, 2012) for a slightly darker edge.
With Social Studies, Churches
Fri/11, 9:30pm, $12
Café Du Nord
2170 Market, SF
Dean Wareham (half of Dean and Britta, with wife Britta Phillips a.k.a the singing voice of Jem) reaches back to his earlier roots, playing select songs from his first band, late ‘80s meandering alternative rock group Galaxie 500, during two thoughtful sets tonight.
Fri/11, 7:30 and 10:30pm (two shows), $20
With Tortured Genies
1131 Polk, SF
Should you want to catch true part-of-the-action forefathers of scratchy ‘60s garage rock’n’roll, best catch the Sloths live and “back from the grave” this weekend at the Stork Club.
With Wounded Lion, Dukes of Hamburg
Sat/12, 8pm, $5
2330 Telegraph, Oakl.