Wednesday, Feb. 25
PLAN A: Tijuana Panthers, Teenage Burritos, The Soaks @ Soda Bar. Get your week off the ground with some catchy Southern California punk and garage rock. Yeah, I know I rag on the ubiquity and predictability of it sometimes, but that doesn't mean it's not a lot of fun when it's done right. PLAN B: Charts, Kids in Heat, Swift Beats @ The Hideout. As it turns out, there's a lot of surf-inspired garage rock happening along El Cajon Boulevard on Wednesday night. Charts hail from Portland, so their reverb-heavy jangle might have a little heavier cloud cover, but it's tuneful, layered and fun in a melancholy sort of way. BACKUP PLAN: Terokal, Nerve Control, Slums of the Future @ The Tower Bar.
Thursday, Feb. 26
PLAN A: GZA @ The Observatory North Park. The greatest solo album ever to come out of the Wu-Tang camp is GZA's Liquid Swords. I'm not really interested in accepting any other answer, though there are some strong runners-up. In any case, it turns 20 this year, and it's being performed in its entirety here. Amazing. PLAN B: Deap Vally, Muscle Beech, Wild Wild Wets @ Belly Up Tavern. I still don't know what's up with the spelling of Deap Vally's name, but the Los Angeles duo rock pretty damn hard, and that's all that matters. Get there early to catch local psych-rockers Wild Wild Wets, whose album 14th Floor is still on regular rotation for me. BACKUP PLAN: The Dabbers, No Promises @ Seven Grand.
Friday, Feb. 27
PLAN A: Griever, Kodiak, Ghostlimb, Deep Sea Thunder Beast @ Soda Bar. Griever are playing a record-release show for their new album, Our Love is Different, which I reviewed in last week's issue. It's an impressive slice of hardcore and sludge metal, so come down to this one and see how San Diego does heavy. PLAN B: Metalachi, Madly @ The Casbah. If you saw Brown Sabbath or Mac Sabbath earlier this month, then you might be tapped out on clever heavy-metal cover bands. But maybe you aren't, in which case Metalachi is the band to catch. They put a mariachi spin on songs by Ozzy Osbourne and Iron Maiden, among others, which is an absolute hoot to hear.
Saturday, Feb. 28
PLAN A: Six Organs of Admittance, Elisa Ambrogio, Dominick Joseph Gambini @ Soda Bar. Six Organs of Admittance is the project of Ben Chasny, whose catalog ranges from American primitivist folk to noisy freakouts. His latest album, Hexadic, is definitely the latter, so bring earplugs and hear the aural equivalent of a bad acid trip firsthand. PLAN B: Craft Spells, The Bilinda Butchers, Meishi Smile @ The Hideout. Seattle's Craft Spells play a melody-heavy style of indie pop, but it's the layers of effects and dreamy aesthetic they blanket over everything that makes it so mesmerizing. The Church sold out their show at The Casbah tonight, so here's a good alternative if you need to get your dreamy, jangly fix.
Sunday, March 1
PLAN A: H.R. of Bad Brains, Willie Psycho, Inconsiderate Jerks @ Brick by Brick. I saw hardcore legends Bad Brains at South by Southwest a few years back, and it was absolutely nuts. I'm not sure it'll be quite the same without the other three members, but the group's leader H.R. is doing a solo thing, and I'm going out on a limb and saying it's still worth checking out. BACKUP PLAN: Theophilus London, Father @ Belly Up Tavern.
Monday, March 2
PLAN A: Crocodiles, Colleen Green, Keepers @ The Hideout. Crocodiles have long since left San Diego, but they've got roots here and, at this stage, a fairly rich catalog of music to their name. They've got another new record on the way, so it should be fun to hear which direction the noise-pop duo is taking in this installment of The Hideout's first-anniversary shows. PLAN B: No Joy, Heavy Hawaii, Scruffles @ Soda Bar. Montreal's No Joy make a whole lot of beautiful noise. They're, for lack of a better term, a shoegaze band, heavily stacking up distortion and effects over pretty pop melodies. It's not a new idea, necessarily, but it's one that gets me every time.
Tuesday, March 3
PLAN A: Milk Music, Gun Outfit, Teenage Burritos @ The Hideout. Milk Music are a little bit Hüsker Dü, a little bit Dinosaur Jr. and a little bit Creedence. It's classic rock for people who like a little more feedback and distortion—tuneful and ass-kicking at the same time.