July 3 2012 08:34 AM

Valient Thorr, Weird Al' Yankovic and Western Scene are some of the acts we're stoked about this week

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Bass Drum of Death
Photo by Marjolein Hoornaert
Wednesday, July 4

PLAN A: "Weird Al" Yankovic @ San Diego County Fair. Nothing says Independence Day quite like a curly-haired, accordion-pumping goofball doing pop parodies in a nasally voice. In addition to novelty standards like "Eat It" and last year's Lady Gaga send-up "Perform This Way," expect fireworks and a performance by the Navy Band Southwest. BACKUP PLAN: Pirito Cordova @ Kava Lounge.


Thursday, July 5

PLAN A: Andy Clockwise, Schitzophonics, The Yawmen @ Soda Bar. L.A.based songwriter Andy Clockwise crafts huge pop hooks with anything he can get his hands on—rocking guitars, honky-tonk piano, dreamy synths, soulful gospel choirs, you name it. Don't miss local rockers Schitzophonics, who channel the spirit of Iggy Pop and Jimi Hendrix with their wild live show. PLAN B: The Makeup Sex, Los Loaded Saints, Focke Wolves, Grampadrew @ The Casbah (free). You can always depend on The Makeup Sex for some solid indie-rock, but make sure to see Grampadrew, the project of local singer-songwriter Drew Douglas. He recently dropped an album of lush, reflective folk-rock that features contributions from a bunch of great San Diego musicians.


Saturday, July 7

PLAN A: Bass Drum of Death, DZ Deathrays, Wild Wild Wets @ Soda Bar. If you hate retro, feel-good garage-rock as much as I do, you'll love Bass Drum of Death. Giving the vintage music style a swift and utterly necessary kick in the balls, the Mississippi duo delivers infectious pop hooks with tough beats, nasty riffs and sneering vocals. PLAN B: Dead Feather Moon, Revoltaire, The Paragraphs, DJ Man Cat @ Belly Up. Dead Feather Moon aren't exactly breaking new ground with their radio-ready brand of working-class, Southern-tinged classic rock. But if you're into local bands like Little Hurricane and Low Volts, you're bound to dig this popular North County outfit. BACKUP PLAN: Meat Loaf @ Harrah's Rincon Casino.


Sunday, July 8

PLAN A: The Silent Comedy, Little White Teeth, Rob Crow, Stephen Rey and Friends @ The Casbah (3 p.m.). Local Americana mainstays The Silent Comedy always put on a wild, sweaty live show, and they're bound to be just as passionate when they go acoustic at this matinée—they'll just be a little quieter this time. Folk-rockers Little White Teeth, meanwhile, are always sublimely subdued. BACKUP PLAN: Reverend Horton Heat, Dave Alvin, Supersuckers, Goddamn Gallows @ House of Blues.


Friday, July 6

PLAN A: Libyans, BDP&T (Broken Dreams and Parker & The Numberman), Fantasy Arcade, Aki Karmichael @ The Tower Bar. As you'll read in Quan Vu's feature, hip-hop trio Parker & The Numberman go bananas when they step onstage. Tonight, they'll join forces with Broken Dreams in the latest installment of the Hip-Hop vs. Punk Rock series. PLAN B: Valient Thorr, Royal Thunder, The Kickass, Coda Reactor @ The Casbah. Pretty much everything about Valient Thorr rules, from the North Carolina band's awesome name to its cheeky music videos to its gnarly, head-banging metal riffs. PLAN C: Western Scene, Italian Japanese, Christian Taylor & The Hollerin, Ladylike @ The Ruby Room. It's no coincidence that Western Scene's sleek 'n' breezy song "Listening" sounds like something off Radiohead's In Rainbows. The new L.A. band—which features a member of defunct local pop-rockers Dynamite Walls—has been working with In Rainbows engineer Hugo Nicolson lately. BACKUP PLAN: Mates of State, Stepkids @ House of Blues. 


Monday, July 9

PLAN A: Spray Paint, Bagdad, Shiva Trash @ Soda Bar. Channeling the weirdo mentality of bands like DNA and Arab on Radar, Austin no-wavers Spray Paint offer up a manic mix of herky-jerky guitars, thumping drums and distorted yells. If you're looking for something a little calmer, though, head to: PLAN B: Marius, Autumn Electric @ Tin Can Ale House. Hailing from the Faroe Islands off the coast of Northern Europe, Marius specializes in the kind of gentle, emotive, wonderfully nuanced folk-pop that goes well with a bottle of wine and a bespectacled love interest.


Tuesday, July 10

PLAN A: Open Mike Eagle, Verbs of Swimteam, Preacher vs. Choir, Kechup @ Kava Lounge. L.A. rapper Open Mike Eagle showcases his eccentric, innovative style on his new album, 4NML HSPTL, offering up vivid rhymes in a restrained flow on singles like "Universe Man" and "Cobra Commander," which features Detroit star Danny Brown. BACKUP PLAN: Cory Branan, Audra Mae, Noel Jordan @ The Casbah.


Email peterh@sdcitybeat.com or follow him on Twitter at @peterholslin.

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