Tonight, Tonight: GWAR at House of Blues, Of Montreal at the Granada Theater, Lifehouse at the Palladium Ballroom, Jacob Metcalf at City Tavern
Another Tuesday rolls around and it's another intriguing collection of musical options. A great night to drown those baseball sorrows.
GWAR, The Casualties, Infernaeon, and Mobile Deathcamp at the House of Blues
What a truly ugly quadruple-bill of metal, theater and punk tonight at the House of Blues. Seeing that Virginia's GWAR has been around since 1984, one might assume that the band and its graphic stage performances might have faded away like so many other fads. But, lo and behold, here we are some 26 years later and GWAR are still wearing those silly outfits and spraying the crowd with all manner of fluids. It hardly matters what GWAR sounds like--this second-generation KISS took it all to another level and didn't stray from that locale for the next two decades. For that, at least, the band deserves credit. New York's The Casualties (old-school punk), Tampa's Infernaeon (death metal) and Toledo's charming Mobile Deathcamp (speed metal) provide support for a show that will need one hell of a clean-up crew.
of Montreal and Janelle Monae at The Granada Theater
With its tenth full-length effort, the funky and charming False Priest, Athens' of Montreal continued its fascinating growth and scope of vision. Over 14 years, of Montreal's leader Kevin Barnes has gone from a lo-fi, indie pop stylist to a full out pop wunderkind. Helped out immeasurably by the guest vocals of one Janelle Monáe, False Priest is one of the more remarkable releases of the year. And, speaking of Monáe, that gal is turning some heads: The singer-songwriter and dancer from Kansas City could well serve as the headliner of this bill. Supposedly, this funk/hip-hop diva believes in time travel. Such might explain how she's influenced by both Aretha Franklin and 1920s sci-fi director Fritz Lang. Anyway, tonight's bill is as fascinating as it is downright weird.
Lifehouse and Kris Allen at The Palladium Ballroom
It's rather easy not to like Lifehouse; the Los Angeles band takes the worst aspects of alternative rock (the pretension, the posturing and the endless use of clichés) and has somehow parlayed such into massive hits, like 2001's "Hanging by a Moment." Slightly rocking, but mostly sappy, the songs of Lifehouse practical define the term guilty pleasure. The band's most recent effort, Smoke and Mirrors, ought to get the 2010 truth in advertising award. But perhaps such unflinching honesty is what makes Lifehouse listenable. These guys know what they are doing and they know that those mall-rats out there aren't downloading music to think about. Calling Lifehouse an alternative band is like saying McDonald's is an alternative restaurant, but Jason Wade and crew know a thing or two about moving those units. Arkansas native and American Idol winner Kris Allen opens up what should be squeaky clean evening of harmless pop.
Jacob Metcalf, The Migrant, Spooky Folk at City Tavern
Local folk favorite Jacob Metcalf is back in town after a trip away, and he's bringing back with him Denmark's The Migrant, whose lo-fi folk leanings aren't all too different from what Metcalf and his pals in the Dallas Family Band are trying to do. The Family Band's Denton cousins, Spooky Folk, shares a mention in the bill, and serves as--easily--the most rocking outfit on the lineup.