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click to enlarge Caitlyn Smith - COURTESY
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  • Caitlyn Smith

Thursday, Sept. 27

Art, hip-hop and youth collective Ojalá Systems bring the subversion to Club Congress. With The Trees, Young Davon and Positive Satan... Straight out of Bisbee, the Monkees-influenced punk pop of The Exbats takes you back to the time when going to sleep with your AM radio tucked under the sheets was the only way. At Owls Club. With TWGS... Critics have often likened this artist to the introspective bluesy folk of John Prine and Norah Jones. Be that as it may, "Crooked," off of My New Moon, displays fangs. "I read a crooked headline on a crooked page/There's a crooked leader on a crooked stage/But he seems to think he's standin' tall/Turns out it's all crooked, y'all." Amos Lee at The Fox Theatre with Nashville songwriter Caitlyn Smith... Country/rock/new wave deconstructionists Golden Boots, like the Japanese art of kintsugi, piece together broken shards to create something new. In the bar at Agustin Kitchen... His pristine voice has made reggae sensation Lukie D notorious around the world. With Rockers Uptown, Neon Prophet and Papa Ranger. Jahmar International hosts at The Rialto Theater... In 2017, Baltimore's Creek Boyz exploded onto the hip-hop scene with "With My Team." Witness their ascent at Club Congress... "Capturing a snapshot of the times. You'd be doing yourself and everyone else a disservice if politics were not referenced in some way," says guitarist Joe Langridge-Brown of Broken Machine, the English alt-rockers latest effort. Nothing But Thieves at 191 Toole. With Grandson and Demob Happy...

Friday, Sept. 28

Those of a certain age may remember pop rockers Pet The Fish. They are reuniting to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Btaaaak! at Club Congress... Bluesy roots rockers Southbound Pilot make a precarious landing in the beer garden at Crooked Tooth Brewery... California record collective The Pinebox offers a diverse evening of acoustic folk, funk/jam, indie rock and grunge/blues. Sounds From the Pinebox Tour featuring Phainopepla, Pistachio, Droll and Gregory Richard pulls into The Monterey Court... Refugee Youth Empowerment Concert combines music from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi and Rwanda, storytelling and the screening of the award-winning film Sauti. At Sea of Glass Center for the Arts... Cool Funeral kicks out the jams for C*nts Being C*nts Talking About C*nts Comedy Show at Cans Deli... Still Life Telescope and Killing Sunday swiftly dispatch Friday night at Saint Charles Tavern... Ritual: Resident DJs Plastic Disease and MIJITO spin goth/alt/witch house/industrial/techno/darkwave at R Bar... Spoken word is their first language. Poets Jennif(f)er Tamayo, Julia Kinu and Aura Valdes read at Alliance For Global Justice... In 1986, hit singles "Little Suzi" and "Modern Day Cowboy" propelled Mechanical Resonance (Geffen) to platinum success. Tesla rock hard at the AVA Amphitheater...

Saturday, Sept. 29

click to enlarge Iron & Wine - COURTESY
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  • Iron & Wine

Sam Beam stumbled upon his nom de guerre on a general store shelf in the form of a dietary supplement named "Beef, Iron & Wine." Iron & Wine speak "Bitter Truth" at The Rialto Theater. With "The Real Thing" folk popper Erin Rae... Austin's Ancient River disperse dreamy rock 'n' roll into the night air at Saint Charles Tavern. With Tropical Beach and Silver Cloud Express... The infamy of Texas Trash and the Trainwrecks and Bordertown Devils precede them. A whiskey fueled bacchanal filled with cow-punk, rock 'n' roll and hillbilly Appalachian fiddle punk awaits at Sky Bar. With The Get Right Rounders... Part of the Fall Concert Series, acclaimed singer-songwriter Kevin Pakulis performs soulful Americana on the plaza at Hotel Congress... The Fineline Revisited is a night dedicated to keeping the legend alive. DJ Stubbie spins at Surly Wench Pub... The listening room at Exo Roast Co. will waft bittersweet with the country noir stylings of West Texas Intermediate. With Ryan Warner... Noted jazz drummer/composer Tim Rachbach invokes a sense of unity Under One Moon at Club Congress. With Purple Spectre... Satisfaction: Pride Dance Party at 191 Toole. DJs Shorty, Robertito, Atlantis Moreupset, Mommy1ssues, Sissy Peniston and Daddy Slumber Party (aka Jaime j. Soto) spin...

click to enlarge Kosha Dillz - COURTESY
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  • Kosha Dillz

Sunday, Sept. 30

His rhymes reflect the world as he sees it. Rapper Kosha Dillz will be "Hangin' Out" at Cans Deli. With ZCO, DEVMO, Austin Keyes and Simplistic... The blues-based soul of Miss Olivia and the Interlopers help heat the air on the patio at Che's Lounge...

Monday, Oct. 1

This duo shrug off the vibe captured on Treehouse, their first album, to "lots of craziness. It sounds like our lives." Sofi Tukker stop for a "Drinkee" at 191 Toole. With LP Giobbi and Crush Club... Can you feel it? Terror will sweep through The House of Bards. With Harm's Way, Backtrack, Year of the Knife and Candy...

Tuesday, Oct. 2

click to enlarge Hocico - COURTESY
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  • Hocico

Out in support of their third album, Golden Age, Houndmouth travel From the Hills Below the City to unleash their mix of roots and alternative blues at The Rialto Theater. With Family Of The Year... Seattle's Origami Ghosts (anti-folk) are still folded spirits that will have you "Seeing Elves." At Cans Deli. With Logan Greene Band and Glacier... Club Sanctuary presents Vampire Ball. Featuring Mexican hard industrial pioneers Hocico. At Surly Wench Pub... As the gitanas dance and mesmerize, "The Prince of Spanish Guitar" Benise will light The Fox Theatre en fuego... Forever "Young at Heart," cinematic indie-poppers Milo Greene "Move" at 191 Toole. With Sharaya Summers...

Wednesday, Oct. 3

Seeing "Visions," reggae rockers Dirty Heads come up for "Oxygen" at The Rialto Theater. With Jukebox The Ghost and Just Loud... Out touring in support of Hardly Electronic, their first release in twelve years, neo-psychedelic poppers The Essex Green cast retro-pop splendor through sheets of color at Club Congress... Surf/soul/psych/synth/lo-fi pop is what's on tap when San Francisco's Spooky Mansions and Albuquerque's Sun Dog meld with Tucson's Liquid Summer and Tropical Beach at Cans Deli... What started in the underground as a monthly dance night at L.A.'s The Lash Social Club has expanded to sold-out shows in Las Vegas and Mexico City. DJ David Parley (one half of electronic duo Prayers) brings Cholo Goth Night to 191 Toole. With DJ Plastic Disease...

Thursday, Oct. 4

Along with multiple Juno Award nominations, songwriter Afie Jurvanen counts successfully landing a kickflip in front of Jack Johnson (earning a "right on dude") as an accolade. Bahamas at 191 Toole with the gentle voiced, transnational folk of Bedouine... Garage band revivalists Mystic Braves and Creation Factory are at Cans Deli. With The Desert Beats... The guitarist for L.A.'s Feels, Shannon Lay, performs solo works from Living Water. Her finger-picked guitar lines and the strength in her downplayed voice capture ears. At Club Congress...

Shout Out...

At the point where two curves meet. Capturing the subtle rush of something about to happen, avant-garde jazz guitarist Gabriel Naim Amor commemorates the release of Moments Before (Sweet Dreams Press) on Friday, Sept. 28 with a soiree at Wooden Tooth Records.

In the Flesh

Shonen Knife

At 191 Toole | September 22

Not entirely unlike Gamera, the giant monster, the indomitable Shonen Knife fed on fire, blasting off mighty plasma fireballs from their mouths, successfully fending off Barugon's rainbow death ray all the way.

In 1981, before Bikini Kill and the Riot Grrrl Movement, when sisters Naoko and Atsuko Yamano formed Shonen Knife, all-female bands were an anomaly.

click to enlarge The Shirelles - COURTESY
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  • The Shirelles

Heavily influenced by 1960s girl groups The Shirelles and Martha and the Vandellas along with 1970s punk rock bands such as The Ramones and Buzzcocks, Shonen Knife embraced the DIY ethos and began to craft stripped-down songs with upbeat melodies sung both in Japanese and English, thumbing their noses at the burgeoning J-pop movement.

This Saturday past, at 191 Toole, Shonen Knife's 75-minute set ranged from pure pop confection to furious blender-beat-backed punk rock that had the crowd headbanging and bopping. The trio encouraged revelers to "Jump Into The New World" and play with "Rubberbands." They cautioned against the horror of "Flying Jelly Attacks" and of intaking too much "Wasabi." They glorified the "Rock 'n' Roll T-shirt" and sang of the inherent joy in eating at "All You Can Eat" buffets and "Riding on the Rocket" with abandon.

At one point, lead vocalist/guitarist Naoko Yamano introduced "I Am A Cat." "This is a song about a cute animal." And like a free-roaming feline, these veteran rockers went from a purr to a wielding a chainsaw with agility, proving that after 37 years, Shonen Knife remain Osaka's reigning pop punk queens.

click to enlarge Wynton Marsalis - COURTESY
  • Courtesy
  • Wynton Marsalis

On The Horizon...

Friday, Oct 5 sees Jazz at Lincoln Center with Wynton Marsalis at Centennial Hall... Legendary singer-songwriter Bob Dylan & His Band play the Tucson Music Hall, also, on Friday, Oct. 5... Karma Chameleon Boy George and Culture Club are at the Desert Diamond Center on Sunday, Oct. 7... Finally, from the "Streets of Bakersfield," Dwight Yoakam brings his stripped down honky-tonk to the Tucson Music Hall on Thursday, Oct. 18...

Until next week, XOXO...

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