Best shows to see: Meat Wave, the Faint, King Dude, and Starlicker



  • Starlicker
First off, I have to say that if you have even one metal bone in your body and you didn't go see High on Fire on Friday, you done fucked up. They rampaged through the most apocalyptic set I've ever seen from them—which I'm tempted to ascribe to Matt Pike's recent stint in rehab. He definitely played the fancy guitar bits in "Snakes for the Divine" more cleanly this time.

But the Reader's Soundboard page still has show recommendations for you today, even if you don't care about High on Fire. After the jump are some highlights selected by our writers, but I should point out at least a few other interesting concerts first: ShowYouSuck and Super Minotaur on Monday at Schubas, the Polyphonic Spree on Tuesday at the Logan Square Auditorium, and Peven Everett on Wednesday at Reggie's Music Joint.

Mon 12/10: Meat Wave at the Empty Bottle

"It hardly shocked me to notice that local trio Meat Wave lists Les Savy Fav and the Detachment Kit under 'Artists We Also Like' on its Facebook page," writes Kevin Warwick. "Though Meat Wave are a tad, ahem, punker and angrier than either of those older bands, they have the same talent for the kind of hooks that are definitely going to make you feel nostalgic in five or six years—and they’ve got no trace of corniness or sentimentality. The song '15 Years,' with its gloom-and-doom guitar lead and crescendoing choruses, is as catchy as anything I’ve heard from a local act this year." Brick Mower headlines; this show is free.

Wed 12/12: The Faint at Metro

At this show Omaha dance-punk group the Faint will play all of 2001's Danse Macabre, the one album that helped Leor Galil understand what his friends liked about the band—he didn't much care for the first he heard, 2004's Wet From Birth. "Its style isn't all that different in its superficial details (those shrill and dissonant keyboards turn up here too), but the songs are more fluid, lively, and focused, and their sinister undertow doesn't feel mannered and theatrical. Even the string arrangements—such as the cello and bowed bass on 'Ballad of a Paralysed Citizen'—sound great, instead of coming off like out-of-place melodramatic flourishes."

Wed 12/12: King Dude at the Empty Bottle

"By day T.J. Cowgill is the proprietor of and lead designer for Actual Pain, a Seattle-based streetwear line whose designs—based largely on imagery borrowed from occultism and esoteric heavy metal—I am chronically addicted to," writes Miles Raymer. "By night Cowgill transforms into King Dude, a one-man band that's about as dark as any of the T-shirts he's made. This fall he released an album, Burning Daylight, whose songs combine Johnny Cash at his bleakest, Nick Cave at his most archly southern gothic, field recordings of house fires, a baritone croak that sounds like what would happen if Leonard Cohen chain-smoked a dozen cartons of Camel straights, and (believe it or not) a pervasive sense of doom."

Wed 12/12: Starlicker at the Hideout

"No single ensemble could contain the polymorphous creativity of once again local cornetist Rob Mazurek, so he maintains several," writes Bill Meyer. "Starlicker is his venue for kicking out the jams. Every member of the trio plays flat-out, filling all available space with the sounds of distressed metal. Mazurek blows hard, Jason Adasiewicz pounds his vibraphone's keys like he wants to see dents, and drummer John Herndon knocks a continuous surge of high-frequency noise out of his cymbals that breaks over the rest of the music like hurricane surf."

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