The busiest concert season in recent memory continues this week. With so many great shows around town, once again, there's no way to fit them all in here—which means you should check out our listings section for lots more great stuff.
First up is the usual pimping of one of the Tucson Weekly's flagship events (and for good reason): the Spring Club Crawl®. You know the drill by now: 100 or so bands in just about every genre you can imagine line venues and stages all along Fourth Avenue and downtown, all for one very reasonably priced wristband, which you can pick up for $8 in advance at both Zia Records locations; you can also buy them at the gates for $10 while they last.
Keep in mind that the layout for this Crawl will be a bit different than in years past due to the modern-streetcar construction. You can read all about that—and everything else Crawl-related, including descriptions of all the performing acts—in the insert you'll find in this very issue. Fold it up, and stick it in your pocket; it'll come in handy. Or, if you prefer, use your smart phone to go to clubcrawl.net for a complete schedule.
Thanks to all of our sponsors. Be sure to drink responsibly, and whatever you do, do not drink and drive. Taxicabs are there for a reason.
Have fun, y'all!
IN DEFENSE OF THE TCC ARENA
When it was announced that Bon Iver was returning to Tucson, with no less of an opening act than Feist, the show was originally scheduled to take place at AVA at Casino del Sol. An on-sale date for tickets was announced, then rescinded. It was confusing.
Here's what happened. The show was indeed booked at AVA—but that was before the first date of the Beach Boys reunion tour was booked there for the following night. No problem, right? Except that there was: The Beach Boys wanted a day before the show to work out the kinks on a real stage, in a real venue, and that date just happened to fall on the same night as the Bon Iver show.
The promoters scrambled to find a replacement venue, and the only one they could find large enough was the Tucson Convention Center Arena. (After all, Bon Iver had just won a pair of big Grammys, for Best New Artist and Best Alternative Music Album, so who would turn down the show?)
The problem is this: People seem to have a certain aversion to the venue. (It's old, in need of upgrading, etc.) So, while most of the shows on the tour have sold out in advance, the Tucson one hasn't come close.
So, I come to praise the TCC Arena, not to bury it. It's certainly not my favorite place to see a show—nor would I stay away from a show there. I've seen tons of great shows there over the years, and not once did I say to myself, "This venue sucks," or, "This show would be so much better if it were at Venue X." No, I simply enjoyed the show.
I bring this up because I've heard several people in recent weeks say that they'd love to see Bon Iver and Feist, but not there. Frankly, I think those people are just being silly. If you want to see the show, go see the show. The TCC Arena is not as bad as some would have you believe. Trust me.
Bon Iver and Feist perform an all-ages show at the TCC Arena, 260 S Church Ave., on Monday, April 23. Tickets are $30 to $40 in advance for general admission, or $35 for reserved seats on the floor. For more information, call 740-1000, or head to rialtotheatre.com.
BOB BARKER WOULD BE PROUD
It's critter-breeding season out there, which means a lot of dogs and cats are roaming the streets looking for food and a mate to procreate with—which, of course, means even more critters roaming the streets and ... you get the idea.
On Friday, April 20, Plush will be the site of a mega-event, which is split into two portions, meant to aid these issues.
Starting at 8:30 p.m., it's Tempest Broog Productions presents Night of the Dog Star! The night begins with a burlesque show featuring birthday girl Pisa Cake, Rosie Provocateur, Scarlotta Sparkle, Poetically Poised, Free Jane, Foxy Trot and others. Lots of goods will be for sale, too, so bring a little extra dough.
After the burlesque, you will be treated to performances by Ensphere, The Modeens, Fish Karma and The Pork Torta.
Admission to the whole shebang is a donation of $6, with all proceeds benefiting Tucson CARES Animal Rescue, which is, according to its website, "a nonprofit and no-kill, no-cage organization saving animals' lives in the Tucson community. Your donation helps Tucson CARES end the cycle of unwanted litters, and stops the killing of homeless cats and dogs. The event's admission of $6 ... funds services, like spay and neuter, and our Pet Pantry, for animal guardians facing hardships."
Trust me, these people are doing God's work.
It all goes down at Plush, 340 E. Sixth St., with doors opening at 8 p.m., Friday, April 20. Again, admission is a $6 donation. Questions? Call 'em up at 798-1298, or head to plushtucson.com.
We're running short on room, so here's a bit of info about some fantastic shows that deserve your attention.
Remember the days when some record labels were so reliable in their good taste that you'd buy any album they released, whether you'd heard it or not? There are very few of those labels left, but at the top of that list is Burger Records—and if you were at the Burger Records Showcase at La Cocina last month, I'm sure you'll agree. And if you missed it, consider yourself lucky to get a second chance at catching a trio of the bands that performed there. Lenguas Largas, Cosmonauts and Feeding People will all be performing at The District Tavern, 260 E. Congress St., starting at 9:30 p.m., Tuesday, April 24. Oh, and did I mention that admission is free? Call 791-0082 for more info.
Washington, D.C.'s Dead Meadow have a sound that combines heavy rock riffs à la Sabbath, guitar buzz à la a more-melodic Sonic Youth, and singer Jason Simon's gorgeous croon on top of it all. It's heavy but not hard, psychedelic but not annoying—and it's killer. Add Spindrift, a Los Angeles-based band that specializes in taking the instrumental soundtracks of Ennio Morricone and drugging it up with layers of reverb; and up-and-comers Strangers Family Band, and you've got one hell of a triple-bill on your hands. This one takes place at Solar Culture Gallery, 31 E. Toole Ave., on Monday, April 23. It's all ages, and $10 gets you in the door. For more info, call 884-0874, or go to solarculture.org.
Boasting a huge, uplifting sound that will no doubt be compared to that of Arcade Fire, Grouplove formed only a couple of years ago, but you'd never know it listening to them, so fully formed is their sound and concept. Head to grouplovemusic.com; sample the tune "Tongue Tied"; then go pick up your tickets for their all-ages show at The Rock, 136 N. Park Ave., on Tuesday, April 24. Doors open at 7 p.m., and Company of Thieves opens the show. Tickets are $15. For more info, head to rocktucson.com.
ON THE BANDWAGON
Big Freedia at Club Congress on Friday, April 20; Cannibal Corpse at The Rock on Monday, April 23; The Mission Creeps and the Electric Blankets at Surly Wench Pub on Friday, April 20; Mr. Boogie Woogie farewell party at Boondocks Lounge on Sunday, April 22; Some of Them Are Old, The Cordials and The Please, Please Me at Plush on Saturday, April 21; Diane Van Deurzen and Lisa Otey at Harlow Gardens on Saturday, April 21; and for a full schedule of performers at the Pima County Fair, head to swfair.com.