How is it already today, today? I mean, how is this week already so present? Long weekends really mess with that standard five in, two out routine, flipping the days on their side, and giving you enough time to buy new shoes and clean out the sock drawer (literally) without feeling like you’re missing out on all that day-drinking at the park. It’s already time to slip on those fresh kicks and catch Kurt Vile, Wet Illustrated, Xiu Xiu, and Mogwai live in venues around this city and its outlying counties.
Last weekend, we as a community fêted the Golden Gate Bridge and all its 75-years-of-burnt-orange glory with super loud fireworks, hidden only partially by rolling fog. We danced in the streets of the Mission for Carnaval. We celebrated tiny sonic explosions with SF Pop Fest. We barbecued tofu and waved flags with the best of ‘em.
And next weekend, friends, is only so close. And there are a whole lot of worthy shows in that short time period in between, up to, and including. Here are your must-see Bay Area concerts this week/end:
Kurt Vile and the Violators
In asking a friend to recount his recent experience at a Kurt Vile and the Violators show last week up north on this current tour (taking the mumbly, guitar-slinging troubadour and his killer rock'n'roll backing band to SF tonight), I was treated to this concise description: “loud epic jammy amazingness.” Yeah, what he said.
With Black Bananas
Wed/30, 8pm, $22.50
1805 Geary, SF
Bay Area garage rock band Wet Illustrated — which features members of Ty Segall’s band, and Lilac — clears a path to so many throwaway descriptors: weirdo, homegrown, pop, punk ethos. Okay, a few more: swirly, moody, silly, psychedelic, Nuggets box set-esque, hip-shaking good times. I’m out of adjectives and buzz phrases. It’s everything.
With the Mallard, Swiftumz, Chris Thayer
2424 Mariposa, SF
The video for Xiu Xiu's “Honeysuckle” off recently released LP Always is a rather representative bid into the decade-old Jamie Stewart project. It's airy and dreamy, art-pop and creepy as hell. Watch the blood pour out of current bandmate Angela Seo's forbidden fruit and try to eat an apple any time later in the day, I dare you.
With Yamantaka Sonic Tita, Father Murphy
Thu/31, 9pm, $14
Bottom of the Hill
1233 17th St., SF
For some seriously evil, reverb-drenched surf guitar riffs, try this early Aughts-born UK garage trio, lead by Primal Scream guitarist Barrie Cadogan . And if you’ve yet to catch the Little Barrie wave, check it out recorded pre-show; the band released jangly new full-length King of the Waves — with horrorcore-lite single “Surf Hell” — this spring on Tummy Touch Records.
With Mamas Cookin’
Thu/31, 9pm, $5
201 Broadway, Oakl.
Classic '90s post-rock act Mogwai makes ample use of distortion and effects, layering endless swelling guitar instrumentals in a hypnotic, uneasy curtain of fog – maybe rock'n'roll is actually cyclical, because the Scottish quintet still sounds up to that modern-retro slow, pulsating speed. Once upon a time it made for great studying-with-headphones ambiance, tonight it makes for the perfect stoney date.
Fri/1, 9pm, $25
1300 Van Ness, SF
Named “Best Lord of Metal” in last year’s Best of the Bay awards, Slough Feg’s Mike Scalzi is still at it, still raising classic metal hell, much to the delight of Bay Area metal fans and beyond. All hail the Lord Weird.
With Cormorant, Young Hunter
Sat/2, 9:30pm, $8
1600 17th St., SF