Wednesday, June 10
PLAN A: Agalloch, Helen Money @ The Casbah. Portland metal outfit Agalloch has a catalog that ranges from blistering black metal to atmospheric, beautiful instrumental pieces. They're a bit like the Godspeed You! Black Emperor of the metal world. If breathtaking, heavy epics are your thing, you need to be here.
Thursday, June 11
PLAN A: Joey Bada$$ @ Observatory North Park. Joey Bada$$ is still pretty young, but he's grown a lot as a rapper in the last couple years. His new album B4.DA.$$ heavily recalls the best of the '90s hip-hop renaissance. Oh, and Malia Obama is a fan, so that's an impressive endorsement. PLAN B: Fool's Gold, Glass Spells @ The Casbah. On paper, Fool's Gold doesn't make a lot of sense—Afro-beat influenced indie rock, with lyrics occasionally sung in Hebrew. But they know how to bring the jams, so their curious, eclectic mix actually works. BACKUP PLAN: The Warlocks, Shake Before Us, Shady Francos, Vowws @ The Hideout.
Friday, June 12
PLAN A: Goatwhore, Black Breath, Ringworm, Theories @ Soda Bar. I'm not a huge Goatwhore fan (that's a great conversation starter; say it to a stranger at a bar), but Black Breath does classic thrash metal and death 'n' roll the way I like it. That's good enough for me. PLAN B: Birdy Bardot, Mittens @ The Balboa. Birdy Bardot has performed in bands like The New Kinetics and The Rosalyns, but she's got her own solo thing now, including a backing band of all-star locals. She's releasing her debut album soon, and you can get a preview here. BACKUP PLAN: Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Teen Men @ The Casbah.
Saturday, June 13
PLAN A: Ceremony, Tony Molina, Uniform, Cursed Graves @ Legend Records. Read my recent feature on Rohnert Park punks Ceremony, who have matured gracefully from power-violence miscreants into a more sophisticated post-punk outfit. And get to the show a little bit early to hear Tony Molina's fuzzy, concise pop. PLAN B: 1349, Necrophagia, Vattnet Viskar, Early Graves, Helsott, Gravespell, Luna Okkulta @ Brick by Brick. I'm impressed at how often black metal legends seem to blast through our humble city, but I'm not actually recommending this show for 1349. They're fine, but Vattnet Viskar is the real treat here, and their new album Settler (out June 16) is one of the year's best metal releases. BACKUP PLAN: Hamilton Leithauser, Jack and Eliza @ The Casbah.
Sunday, June 14
PLAN A: UK Subs, The Executives, Sculpins, Homeless Sexuals @ Soda Bar. It's not just black metal legends that have San Diego on their radar—old-school punks have been making the rounds of late. The most recent to drop in are the UK Subs, who are one year shy of their 40th anniversary. They've had about 8,000 members over the years. Who knows what the lineup is like, but it should be fun either way.
Monday, June 15
PLAN A: Le Chateau, Kingdom of Lights, DJs Jeremiah BZ, Mike Delgado @ The Office. Read my feature on local trio Le Chateau, who combine a diverse array of influences into an impressive and eclectic dream-pop sound. PLAN B: Lupe Fiasco, Charles Hamilton @ Observatory North Park. I'm conflicted over Lupe Fiasco. He has a tendency to be insufferably preachy; then again, he recorded some hip-hop classics like "Kick, Push" and "Hip-Hop Saved My Life." I'm cautiously optimistic he'll bring the jams. BACKUP PLAN: Motopony, Gunkadeit, Bruin @ The Casbah.
TuesdAy, June 16
PLAN A: Jonathan Richman @ Belly Up Tavern. You might know Jonathan Richman as the frontman for legendary proto-punk band The Modern Lovers. Or, perhaps you know him as a solo artist with a rich catalog of classic songs. Either way, the man knows his way around a tune, and this "A night with" show should prove that. BACKUP PLAN: And And And, Soul-Junk, El Consumption @ Soda Bar.