Wednesday, June 9
PLAN A: DJ Penny Nelson, DJ Kool Won, Mr. Brady, Black Mikey, Forey, Polo, Charley Mac @ Dream Street. If you're into local gangsta rap—or, for that matter, local rap history—then this is the show for you. Black Mikey was spitting rhymes as a teen in the late '80s, when the scene in San Diego was just coming together. Track titles like “Guns, Drugs, Bitches & Music” and “Fuck You, Pay Me” make it clear what he's all about. PLAN B: Wendy Bailey, Mouse Fire, DJ Morgan Young @ Beauty Bar. Locals Wendy Bailey make sugary-sweet indie-rock that could easily be the opening theme of a suburban TV drama. As for Florida rockers Mouse Fire, quirky songs like “Silly Boy from Tampa Bay” and “True, I May Have Lost It” seem lifted straight from daytime television. But, somehow, it works. BACKUP PLAN: Incomplete Neighbor, A Scribe Amidst the Lions, Boombox Renaissance @ Che Café.
Thursday, June 10
PLAN A: Lou Barlow, Sarah Jaffe @ The Casbah. As a member of bands Dinosaur Jr, Sebadoh and Folk Implosion, Lou Barlow produced some of the best indie rock of the '90s. But his solo work, much of it acoustic, singer-songwriter fare recorded on four-track tape recorders, is just as raw and emotional as his best '90s output. Don't miss Sarah Jaffe's hearty acoustic folk. PLAN B: Miyavi @ House of Blues. With his striking hairdos and makeup, Miyavi looks like Japan's very own Lady Gaga. But this self-described “samurai guitarist” has serious chops to back up his look. BACKUP PLAN: Robert Randolph & The Family Band, Jonathan Tyler and Northern Lights @ Belly Up.
Friday, June 11
PLAN A: Diplo @ House of Blues. Best known for his collaborations with ex-girlfriend, M.I.A., Diplo performs in the dancehall-tinged group Major Lazer and has worked with everyone from Philadelphia underground rappers Spank Rock to French electro band Justice. But he also puts down sick beats of his own, bridging the gap between Brazilian baile funk and auto-tuned R&B. PLAN B: Greg Laswell @ Anthology. Local singer-songwriter Laswell is famous for being a sad sap, but today he celebrates the release of a new album, Take a Bow, that's by turns angry and happy. (See our feature on this page.) BACKUP PLAN: Barrington Levy @ Sound Wave.
Saturday, June 12
PLAN A: Thou, Moloch, Ghost Limb, Abandon, Dangers, Soul Control, Another Breath @ Che Café. Of all the doom-metal bands with their oceans of droning riffs, Louisiana's Thou offer up especially colorful muck with unpredictable guitar changes and a mystical outlook. (And those raspy screams are to die for!) The U.K.'s Moloch is more straightforward, but their huge riffs certainly induce cowering. PLAN B: Writer, Cuckoo Chaos, Trouble in the Wind, Knorphus @ The Casbah. Arts nonprofit Sezio.org celebrates its two-year anniversary with some great local indie music, ranging from Writer's innovative rock to Trouble in the Wind's languid alt-folk. BACKUP PLAN: The Skatalites, The Devastators @ Belly Up.
Sunday, June 13
PLAN A: Los Tigres del Norte @ Del Mar Racetrack. Hailing from Sinaloa, the drug capital of Mexico, norteño legends Los Tigres del Norte know a thing or two about modern life. Over plucky bass and accordion, they're as likely to sing about love and heartbreak as drugs and immigration. PLAN B: Tortoise, Das Boton @ The Casbah. “Post-rock” sounds like a nonsensical term, but it really does apply to Tortoise's spacey grooves, which feel indebted to rock even as they transcend it. BACKUP PLAN: Sting and the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra @ Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre.
Monday, June 14
PLAN A: The Dragons, Transfer, Furious IV, Ziggy Shuffledust and the Spiders From Mars, Wirepony @ The Casbah. Aside from the fact that the lineup includes longtime garage-rockers The Dragons and local heavyweights Transfer, there's good reason to go to this show: Ticket sales will benefit Bob Bennett, a longtime Casbah bartender and business partner who's about to undergo alcohol treatment and is saddled with medical bills from a recent knee surgery. I'll be disappointed if the lead man in Bowie cover band Ziggy Shuffledust fails to wear a multicolored leotard. BACKUP PLAN: Brier Rose, The Smart Brothers, The New Limb, Meseta @ Soda Bar.
Tuesday, June 15
PLAN A: Mattson 2, The Shade, Duchampion @ Soda Bar. Things will be getting heady tonight. In addition to the twin brothers of Mattson 2, who offer cool jazz with languid guitar and subtle drums, there's a self-described “post-classical post-rock Americana conglomerate” (The Shade) and a band whose name seems to reference Marcel Duchamp. PLAN B: Shellshag, Dan Padilla @ The Casbah. Shellshag have a '90s Northwest indie-rock feel, but I'm guessing that they picked up the irony inherent in the noisy jam “Shut Up” from their hipster friends in Brooklyn. BACKUP PLAN: Of Sons and Ghosts, The Delta Mirror, The Shimmies, DJ Skullcrusher @ Tin Can Ale House.