It's an incredibly busy week in Tucson music. I'll see how much of it I can cram in here—and be sure to check out our listings sections for all the great stuff that didn't make it.
RED ROOM REVIVED (SORT OF)
It was just last week that Grill, and with it the beloved Red Room, closed its doors, leaving a gaping hole in local-music happenings—and leading to unfulfilled cravings for tater tots and pesto sauce. But this week brings some good news: Another local venue is stepping in to pick up some of the slack and fill that niche.
Alas, La Cocina doesn't serve tots, but they do have a full menu, a lovely courtyard and a lounge for escape when it's too cold outside. And this week, the joint, along with Acorn Bcorn's Marina Cornelius—who booked the last month of Red Room shows—begins a series of late-night shows dubbed RR Nites. (The RR stands for both Red Room and rock 'n' roll.) The idea is that some of the shows scheduled for the Red Room, as well as some shows whose bills would have normally found a home there, will now take place at La Cocina on Wednesday and Thursday nights. ("I'm ... motivated to help find a good new clubhouse and venue for our music and social scene that has a little of the Red Room magic," writes Cornelius in a message to Soundbites.)
If you've picked up this issue early, or are reading it online shortly after it's posted on Wednesday, you're in luck: On Wednesday, Nov. 30, La Cocina will feature a triple bill of Young Hunter, Otherly Love and Brass Tax; and on Thursday, Dec. 1, the lineup will be Mustanottas ("a new guitar-heavy folk/pop/psychedelic rock 'n' roll band"), Page of Cups ("a gently rocking acoustic quest through two part harmonies") and Matt's and Alix's Little Gems Vinyl Show. As of right now, the only other scheduled show in the RR Nites series takes place next Thursday, Dec. 8, a bill featuring Canadian female dream poppers Peach Kelli Pop and our own Lenguas Largas—but keep your eyes peeled for similar Wednesday- and Thursday-night bookings there.
Some of the rules are slightly different at La Cocina: While there is no cover, shows start at 9 p.m., but become 21-and-older at 10 p.m.; the kitchen closes at 10 p.m. as well. But as long as folks show up to these shows, La Cocina will continue to book them.
La Cocina is located at 201 N. Court Ave., in Old Town Artisans. For a full schedule, head to lacocinatucson.com; for info about RR Nites, go to facebook.com/RRnites. And call 622-0351 with questions.
HELP THE KOOL
While I don't profess to know what's going on with KXCI FM 91.3 DJ Marty Kool, host of Blues Review, and his wife, Mary, something seems to be going on, according to a press release sent to the Soundbites desk: "In these economic times, plenty of Tucson families are walking an economic tightrope without a net; local musicians and those who support them often bear the brunt of unexpected health-care and employment issues. As always, our music community is ready to provide a fun and friendly night for a good cause, and you are invited!"
To that end, on Saturday, Dec. 3, from 5 p.m. to midnight, Boondocks Lounge, 3306 N. First Ave., will host a Blues Benefit for Mary and Marty Kool. Though some other acts will surely be added to the bill as it gets closer, at press time, confirmed performers include Tony and the Torpedoes, Sabra Faulk and Heather Hardy, the Bryan Dean Trio, Mitzi Cowell and the Valiants, Grams and Krieger with Nancy McCallion and the Tall Paul Band. The night will end with a Blues Benefit Jam.
Admission is a suggested donation of $10, but no one will be turned away. The event is all-ages until 9 p.m., and 21-and-over after that. For further details, head to boondockslounge.com, or call 690-0991.
CELEBRATE OUR EARTHLY DEMISE
The twisted fuckers over at Powhaus Productions are up to their old tricks this week, doing what they do best: throwing a big ol' dance party.
In keeping with the nutjobs who are constantly predicting the end of days, the theme this time around is Prophecy. From a press release: "War, poverty, greed and natural catastrophes run rampant. It is time for humanity to return to the counsel of the gods. Expect gods and goddesses, mutants and morals, kaboom-boom and doom, sacrifice and salvation, all in one evening. Channel your inner immortal, and join us!" Translation: Wear a fabulous costume, and dance your ass off.
In addition to a DJ'ed dance party, the night will also include performances by Mr. Free and the Satellite Freakout, Jaime J., and The Fiestacles, as well as video art and Tarot-card readings. Oh, and there is a "human sacrifice" at midnight. (For more information, see this week's City Week Pick.)
Powhaus Presents Prophecy begins at 9 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 3, at the Rialto Theatre, 318 E. Congress St. Admission is $5 and open to those 18 and older. For more info, check out the event's Facebook page or rialtotheatre.com, or call 740-1000.
AND OVER AT SOLAR CULTURE ...
In addition to the Ocote Soul Sounds show Gene Armstrong writes about in this week's music feature, Solar Culture Gallery will be the site of what should be three other great shows this week.
First up, at 9 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 3, is Chicago's Cave, who have not just studied, but have fully absorbed the motorik propulsion of krautrock bands like Neu! While earlier releases felt a little not-quite-fully formed, the songs on the band's latest, Neverendless (Drag City, 2011), tend to keep a steady groove, while other elements—synths, distorted guitar—drift in and out of the arrangement. It's riveting stuff.
The show costs $7 and is open to those of all ages.
On Monday, Dec. 5, the San Antonio-based Girl in a Coma will return to the venue for a benefit show for Voto Latino, "the leading national Latino-youth civic-engagement organization," according to a press release. The female trio (two sisters and a friend) has a story that's pretty remarkable. Named after a Smiths song, the trio sent a tape to Morrissey musical director Boz Boorer, who then invited the band to London, where he produced a demo for them. Not long after that, the band was being filmed at a show in New York as part of a documentary on emerging Latino bands. Joan Jett, who happened to be in the audience, signed the women to her Blackheart label on the spot. The rest, as they say, is history, and last month, the label issued the group's latest and most-accessible album, Exits and All the Rest.
Girl in a Coma performs an all-ages show at 8 p.m., and the suggested donation is $8.
And on Wednesday, Dec. 7, Solar Culture welcomes back David Bazan. For a decade, Bazan was the creative force behind the spiritually minded and successful indie act Pedro the Lion. By the time of that band's demise, he found himself with, according to his bio, "a crisis of faith and a growing drinking problem." In 2006, as he exorcised those demons, he began a solo career that has yielded an EP and two albums, the latest of which is this year's excellent Strange Negotiations (Barsuk), which finds him struggling to make sense of things in the aftermath of losing his religion. (Trust me: It's not the bummer it sounds like.)
Kaia Chesney opens for David Bazan at 9 p.m. The show is all-ages, and cover is $10. For more info about any of these shows, check out solarculture.org, or call 884-0874.
ON THE BANDWAGON
The Supersuckers and Three Bad Jacks at the Rialto Theatre on Friday, Dec. 2 (note: The Blasters are no longer on this bill); The Wailers, Lee "Scratch" Perry, Duane Stephenson and Spirit Familia at the Rialto Theatre next Thursday, Dec. 8; Red Fang, Vanish Twin and God Hunter at Club Congress on Tuesday, Dec. 6; Kiss and the Tells, The Project (a Motown-inspired hip-hop band that features members of Holy Rolling Empire) and The Aces at Plush on Saturday, Dec. 3; Scott Kelly of Neurosis, Jay Munly of Slim Cessna's Auto Club and Bob Wayne at Club Congress on Wednesday, Dec. 7; The Dollyrots, High Horse, Apocalipstick and The Cosmeticators at The Hut on Friday, Dec. 2; Sweet Nasty Band, The Tangelos and The Tryst at The Hut on Saturday, Dec. 3; Mannheim Steamroller at UA Centennial Hall on Sunday, Dec. 4; Gary Allan at Desert Diamond Casino next Thursday, Dec. 8; Ricky Gelb and Leila Lopez at La Cocina on Saturday, Dec. 3.