Wednesday, March 23
PLAN A: Polica, Clara-Nova @ The Irenic. Polica plays a synth-based sound that's sophisticated with a jagged edge. Their new single "Wedding" is a jam, and its Sesame Street-inspired video juxtaposes some fucked-up looking muppets with themes of racial injustice. PLAN B: Reverend Horton Heat, Unknown Hinson, Cadillac Tramps, Viernes 13 @ Belly Up Tavern. I haven't kept up with Reverend Horton Heat that closely over the years, but the man's released enough great psychobilly records to earn my endorsement. BACKUP PLAN: Bayonne @ The Hideout.
Thursday, March 24
PLAN A: Weedeater, Author & Punisher, Today is the Day, Lord Dying @ Brick by Brick. Your best bet on Thursday is this lineup of heavy bands. And it's pretty diverse, too, featuring industrial metal architect Author & Punisher and noisecore heroes Today is the Day. PLAN B: Eerie Wanda, Las Piñas, Abjects @ Soda Bar. For a more laid back evening, seek out Eerie Wanda, whose sound blends ethereal dream pop and folky textures, with more than a touch of '60s French ye-ye influence.
Friday, March 25
PLAN A: Napalm Death, Melt Banana, Victims, Netherlands @ The Casbah. UK grindcore legends Napalm Death have an incredible track record of high-speed, hyper-intense metal and hardcore. Do some calisthenics, limber up and get in the pit. PLAN B: Freddie Gibbs, Chaz French @ Observatory North Park. Indiana emcee Freddie Gibbs has released two excellent hip-hop records in the last two years, his 2014 album Piñata being one of the best rap albums of the half-decade. The dude's one of the best in the game. BACKUP PLAN: TEEN, Hills Like Elephants @ Whistle Stop.
Saturday, March 26
PLAN A: Abbath, High on Fire, Skeletonwitch, Tribulation @ Observatory North Park. Yes, you're seeing that right—three metal Plan A picks in a row. I admit it's a lot of metal, but when you have sludge titans High on Fire, black metal legend Abbath and Swedish dark metal masters Tribulation in one show, there's just no topping that. PLAN B: Murder by Death, Tim Barry @ The Casbah. Murder by Death's dark, twangy gothic Americana tunes are the perfect alternative to the crimes being committed in the name of roots music. BACKUP PLAN: The Foreign Resort, PRGRM, The Slashes, Blood Ponies @ Ken Club.
Sunday, March 27
PLAN A: Rob Crow's Gloomy Place, Vertical Scratchers @ The Casbah. If you didn't catch Seth Combs' interview with Rob Crow last week, go back and give it a read before hearing the Pinback frontman's new band.
Monday, March 28
PLAN A: Dreadnought, Nio, Old Man Wizard, Garth Algar, Nic Nassuet @ The Merrow. Colorado's Dreadnought make ethereal, yet heavy progressive rock with mystical and psychedelic elements. Monday night has never felt so epic.
Tuesday, March 29
PLAN A: Santigold @ House of Blues. Read Scott McDonald's cover story this week about Santi White, better known as Santigold. Her new album 99 Cents is another solid collection of eclectic pop jams, sure to translate to a fun live show. PLAN B: Night Beats, San Pedro El Cortez, Dream Joints @ Soda Bar. The name Night Beats suggests the kind of thing youíd hear at a chic discotheque. That's not the case at all, as it turns out. This is trippy, garagey rock 'n' roll by scruffy dudes with guitars.